Sri Sathya Sai Baba inspired millions of people around the world to love everyone selflessly, without any boundaries or prejudices. In every discourse and in every interaction, He urged those who flocked to Him to love all and serve all. And Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai has been repeatedly reminding us about this greatest lesson – Divinity is nothing but absolute selflessness.
Speaking to a group of active sevā volunteers Sri Madhusudan Sai once said, “Whoever serves selflessly, whoever helps those in need, is an angel in this world today. This is the need of the hour, and this can really solve the problems of the world. From ‘mine’ and ‘thine’, move to ‘we’ and ‘ours’. We need men and women, with selfless love for all creatures and selfless love for fellow beings, who will dedicatedly serve them. Only such people can really give true light to society and also to the world.”
Excerpt From a Book
The Wise Cartman and his Royal Disciple (chāndogya 4.1, 4.2)
jānaśruti was a pious and kind king, who looked after his subjects with love and generosity. He had established resting places and community kitchens across his kingdom, providing free shelter and food to the public. However, he was a bit egoistic and believing that he was a very great patron of his subjects, he measured his merit by the magnitude of gifts and money he gave away in charity. With his efforts on the spiritual path, he had also learnt the languages of birds and beasts.
One night, when jānaśruti was resting on the terrace of his palace, he heard the dialogue of two swans, which were flying above. One of the swans said, “Look at the brilliant radiance emanating from the body of king jānaśruti due to his benevolence. Be careful! If you cross it, you may be burnt! None can be greater than him as far as charity is concerned.” The other swan replied, “Do you mean to say that king jānaśruti is greater than raikva, the cartman? I do not believe so. This king hankers after name and fame, and it is this desire that drives him to engage in charitable activities. Look, in spite of all his charity, his mind is not at peace!”
The king was rudely shocked to hear the conversation of the swans and became very restless. He desperately wanted to find out who this cartman raikva was and the secret of his inner peace. Next morning, he sent his servants to find the cartman. After a long and tedious search, the servants were finally able to locate raikva. He was sitting, seemingly idly, under his cart in the remote corner of a village and scratching his body to relieve himself of itching! They reported this information to the king.
Next day, king jānaśruti went to meet raikva along with six hundred cows, many gold ornaments and a chariot with horses. He offered them all at the feet of raikva and said, “Revered Sir, be kind to accept all these and teach me spiritual knowledge.”raikva was highly displeased and irritated; he gruffly replied, “Please take away all your gifts and leave me in peace. Spiritual wisdom cannot be purchased with wealth!” The king was humiliated and disappointed; helpless, he returned to his palace.
The king could not rest in peace but developed great reverence for the cartman who had no desire for wealth. After a few days, the chastened king went to meet raikva again. This time, he took a thousand cows, a chariot with horses, gold ornaments and even offered his own daughter in marriage to raikva. He prostrated at the feet of raikva with great humility and prayed, “Revered Sir, be kind enough to accept these humble offerings of your disciple. This village, where you are dwelling, shall also be yours. Please bestow your mercy on me and teach me the higher truths of existence.” Again, raikva was not at all impressed by the bounteous gifts; but he was touched by the king’s humility, sincerity and determination, the qualities that mark an ideal śiṣya (disciple).
The wise raikva proclaimed, “O royal one, in this creation there are many entities which are worshipped as gods. The wind has the ability to sweep away all the things it encounters. The fire has the ability to reduce to ashes everything that it touches. There is also the prāṇa (vital breath), without which no creature can stay alive. However, there is someone higher than everything else in this universe and He creates and propels these entities; He is ātman – the Supreme Self within. He was not created by anyone; He was never born and will never die. And yet He brings forth and sustains the entire creation with a mere command!
O king, you have to forsake the pride and vanity that you have developed on account of your charitable deeds. Combine charity with humility. Give abundantly, but not with arrogance. Give freely, but not with an eye on name and fame. All the wealth you possess is bequeathed upon you by the Self for giving to others. All this is through the Self, by the Self and for the Self. He who knows this truth becomes a knower of the Self; he has no wants, yet he becomes the enjoyer of all things!” The king returned to his palace a wiser and humbler man and led a sacred and selfless life thereafter in pursuit of the Self.
An excerpt from the book – Sanātana Dharma, authored by Mr B N Narasimha Murthy, Pg no. 86,87 and 88.
My Life, Tuned By The Divine
By Ms Tamilarasi Krishnan
As the lyrics of the song is tuned so too my life is tuned by the Divine…
Down the memory lane, as a Secondary school student, a drastic change occurred in my inner self. I became attached to my divine Master, I felt his presence at all times, at any circumstance, he revealed to me His glory in all situations and He looked after all my needs. The change in me brought pleasant and strenuous experience, as I realised that my beloved Swami was the breath of my life. Indeed, I am privileged as Sai Ananda āśrama is at walking distance from my home. I have to express that I grew up in the divine abode, where Swami and I are very close physically and mentally. I realised the inner joy and satisfaction in me whenever I am at the āśrama.
At many times, Swami reminded me putting a thought in me, “If you take one step towards Me, I shall take a hundred towards you.” Ever since then, my heart melted. Hence the journey of my transformation began. My dearest Swami hears what is not spoken and understands what is not explained, for His love is a thousand mothers love. His love doesn’t work with words or in the mind, but it emerges in the heart of all who have firm faith in his divine mission. It was in the year 2017, that I was given the opportunity to attend a divine pilgrimage to Kodaikanal along with Him. It was the most memorable trip in my life. During a satsang at Kodaikanal, our beloved Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai asked the crowd seated, “Who is a teacher?” A few members including myself raised our hands to answer. Sadguru looked at me, and lovingly replied, “Very happy.” He then distributed sarees to all teachers, at that time I sought His blessings for my further education. Swami blessed me and said “Start your further education.” I was overwhelmed and thus, my postgraduate education began. With His grace, I am completing my postgraduate studies focusing on ‘Educational Psychology’ this year. I know Swami has crafted my life which sometimes looks like a puzzle, but yes, He is the one who is fixing it gracefully. I firmly believe that He has guided me in all situations right from the assignments, the presentations, and will complete the degree too with flying colours.
During the peak of the pandemic, I used to regularly encounter unpleasant days. My monkey mind, became restless more often than usual. I experienced something unusual, which drained me both, mentally and physically. There were times that I lost my focus towards work and study. I used to over think on minor issues which created complications and raised unfavourable thoughts leading to unwelcoming actions. Yet, our loving Sadguru gave me the greatest solution through His divine message from the ‘Master the Mind’ series. Sadguru reminded all of us to practise whatever He has taught us. I have realised that the ocean of thoughts that we keep pondering upon should be controlled and channeled to the feeling that ‘we are one with God’. Good thoughts will create positive energy and benefit us at individual level and also the people around us. Upon listening to few episodes from ‘Master the Mind’ series, I became calm and eventually the anger in me reduced. With a clear mind, I am able to control my thoughts and able to make decisions wisely. Sadguru taught me how to withdraw and control my thoughts even in worst case scenario. Now I have decided to withdraw myself from my thoughts and control my five senses. Keeping my mind calm and always thinking that ‘I am divine’ is my daily sādhana. This made a huge impact in me and now I am able to support my students aptly and appropriately. Today, I know that my faith in Swami has tuned the lyrics of my life which is leading its way to the Divine.
To help reach Sri Sathya Sai Baba’s human values-based education to the world, and to resuscitate the humanness of humanity, the Sri Sathya Sai University for Human Excellence launched a unique, first-of-its-kind Institute of Human Values, to offer tailor-made courses totally free of any charges, curated by experts from around the world. The Vision of the Institute is to make better humans in their personal and professional spheres, by making them more sensitive towards society’s needs and exploring ways of their contribution to society in a meaningful and selfless manner, thereby creating a sense of global citizenship and responsibility.
The courses will help an individual balance the inside and outside, while progressively being a better human being, that will ultimately help him or her unravel the true meaning and purpose in life.
Learning from the heart is spiritual awakening, Baba would say. The Institute of Human Values is the first step to help lead the world into the beautiful awareness of its heart – a heart that operates from the universal human values of Sathya, Dharma, Shanti, Prema and Ahimsa.
Arise, awake; having reached the great, learn; the edge of a razor is sharp and impassable; that path, the intelligent say, is hard to go by. This is the clarion call of kaṭhopaniṣad. Every jīvātmā (individual soul) should be awakened to this call, rise up and work towards realising its true nature. It should never give up this goal of mergence with paramātma (Supreme soul), the sole reason for someone to take birth on this planet.
Do not settle down for anything less just because the journey seems difficult and impossible. This is not the trait of a serious spiritual aspirant. As it is said by a famous philosopher Jalāl al-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī, “What you seek is seeking you.” Focus and fixate upon the ultimate and keep seeking for it. Perseverance and patience will definitely reap a good, developed and sweet fruit.
In episode 43, Sadguru Sri Madhusudan Sai further elucidates the infinite potential of a mind when merged with Divinity. Come and receive the highest wisdom in the simplest way possible!
INSPIRATIONAL QUOTE FOR THE WEEK
“A journey of thousand miles must begin with a single step.”
– Lao Tzu
(Welfare of the World)
With the beginning of new year 2022, the sevā for the needy continued with much love and compassion.
In Sai Krupa, Penang, every Thursday, the homeless were served with hot and nutritious dinner. The Sai youth and devotees prepared food and hot drinks for 50 individuals. In addition, monthly rations for six families and financial support for two needy families were provided by the Sai youth.
In Sai Ananda, Kuala Lumpur, this year kicked off with providing daily lunch meals for 50 individuals. The Monthly provision camp, which is conducted every single month without a miss, provided provisions to over 100 families in need.