Volume 8 - Issue 09
July 2011
Other Articles

 

Discourse Quiz on

‘TALES TO TRANSFORM – DIRECT FROM THE DIVINE'

Part-3

Right answer on your 1st attempt
3 Points
Right answer on your 2nd attempt
2 Points
Right answer on your 3rd attempt
1 Point

 

 

For the past eight decades, the only mission Bhagawan Baba has been engaged in is to raise the level of awareness of man from the mundane to the divine. And He has done this through His own life as well as His Teachings. Every discourse of Baba is charged with powerful messages delivered in a manner that is simple and lucid, practical and penetrating. Almost on every such occasion, Bhagawan begins with a poem and ends with a bhajan which is sung en masse. And the main message is conveyed through the elucidation of deep insights ably supplemented and illustrated with interesting and inspiring anecdotes; each of these tales is fascinating and worth ruminating over repeatedly.

It is for this reason that we have culled out 85 such stories from the huge treasure of His divine discourses to present them in the form of quizzes. The first part had 21 questions and the second nine, this part contains 10 more; making it 40 simple and subtle stories to ennoble our life's sojourn.  We hope this will serve you in revisiting and reminiscing His message.

 

 

31. During the 1973 Summer Showers, talking about how great traditions can carry on if parents support and appreciate good behaviour of their children Swami narrated a small story:

“On a Saturday, a father was engaged in worshipping the Lord, so he called his son and told him to get some plantains for a rupee. The obedient boy did as told, but on the way he saw a hungry mother and son standing on the road. Seeing the plantains, the emaciated boy ran towards them. His worried mother followed him to stop him and finally did catch him. But once this happened, both of them collapsed out of fatigue.

“The boy with plantains thought it was much better to feed these hungry people than take the bananas home. And that is what he did. In fact he also brought water for them. The mother and son expressed their profuse gratitude through tears of joy. The boy went home empty-handed.

“When his father asked him about the bananas, he replied in the affirmative. When queried as to where they were, the son replied that the bananas he brought were sacred, they will not rot but at the same time cannot be seen.

“The son then explained that he fed two hungry souls with the bananas; and the fruits, which he brought home, are only the sacred fruits of his action.”

Bhagawan says hearing this his father reacted like an ideal father. What did he exactly do?


32. During a divine discourse delivered in 1992, Bhagawan narrated a story on the secret to success while undertaking the journey of life: “A rich man bundled up all the necessary luggage in his bed-holder and started on a pilgrimage. He visited Kasi (Benares), Prayag, Haridwar and other such holy places. Although tired with the journey during the day, he could not sleep well at nights.

“During the daytime, he had the darshan (the holy sight) of the beautiful images of Gods and Goddesses and bathed in the sacred waters of holy rivers. He was happy that by these religious deeds his sins were being washed away. However when he investigated into the reason for his sleeplessness during the nights, he found that there were many bugs in his bedding. He had to get rid of them if he wished to have a sound sleep."

Bhagawan later compared the rich man's bed to his body. Then how did He explain the 'bugs'?

 

33. During a divine discourse given in 1969, Swami narrated an enlightening story: “There was a beggar who once wailed before a rich man's house for alms. The master, reclining on an easy chair, drove him out with harsh abuse. But the beggar persisted. He asked the man for some stale food at least!

“On hearing this conversation, the daughter-in-law who was having her meal inside replied, 'My dear fellow! We are at present eating stale food. The fresh dishes are being cooked now.' The beggar understood what she meant.”

What did the daughter-in-law mean by the above statement?

 

34. During a divine discourse given in 1987, Swami narrated a story to explain how man regresses spiritually due to bondages – past, present, or future: “There was once a man who had a cow which was a source of income for his family. In course of time, all his kith and kin passed away and the cow also died. He began to think what for he had striven all these years, and so went to a guru to seek advice on his predicament.

“The guru asked him whether he had done any spiritual sadhana in his life. The man replied he hadn't and that whenever he sat for meditation the image of the cow, on which he had lavished great affection, appeared before him. This was because of his intense attachment to the cow, the guru explained.

“The guru advised him now to look upon the cow as a manifestation of the Divine and to regard it as an expression of ‘Sat-Chit-Ananda’ (Being-Awareness-Bliss) - the triune nature of the Divine.”

As the story goes, the guru told the man to meditate on the cow. But how do you think this will help the man in bondage? What is the spiritual significance of this command?


 

35. During a divine discourse given in 1967, Swami narrated a story which conveyed a profound lesson: “Man alone is endowed with the ability to establish mastery over the senses. Birds, beasts and other species have no such capacity to discriminate and renounce. They act on instinct or impulse; they cannot argue, assess, accept or reject.

“A hermit was one day bathing in the Ganga, when he saw floating on a piece of wood downstream a scorpion. 'This is God encased in the form of a scorpion', he felt and wanted to save it. So he took it on his palm; but when it stung him, he dropped it into the waters. Then he was stricken with remorse and so, he lifted it up again. And the scorpion stung him one more time.

“This happened five or six times; but he persisted in his mission of mercy and at last managed to drop it on dry land so that it could go its way, alive and happy.

"Many people watched his efforts and laughed at him for his stupidly exaggerated sympathy. The hermit told them that the scorpion had taught him a lesson and he was thankful for it. They asked him what it was.”

What lesson did the hermit learn that is useful to all?


36. During a divine discourse given in 1968, Swami narrated a story that teaches us the secret of spiritual success: “In Venkatagiri there was an orthodox Brahmin, who performed his sandhya (rites laid down for performance during dawn, midday and dusk) regularly. During these rites, he had to take in small spoonfuls of consecrated water thrice, one spoon after another, a number of times.

“The son who was watching him laughed and said, ‘Why do you have to sip it so many times? Swallow all the water in a gulp. That will make things easy and quick.'

“The father remained silent; but later when the son was sweating over his homework, and dipping his pen in ink once every few minutes (in those days one had to do this to write), he laughed and said, 'Why don't you pour the entire bottle of ink on the paper and be done with it? Why take all this bother of dipping and distributing it in droplets, line by line, thin, and emaciated?’”

Swami then went on to explain that each rite has a significance and meaning, and it is best to leave it to the person who believes in it and acts accordingly. Later He narrated how one should save oneself by performing sacred actions. According to Bhagawan, what is the secret of spiritual success?


37. During the 1973 Summer Showers, Swami narrated a story to help people who wish to get rid of any bad habit: “One individual got into the habit of eating opium regularly. It was not possible for him to control this habit and due to this he had become weak.

“Once a saintly person visited his city. The opium-eater went along with the crowd to have the darshan of this holy man and seek his advice. The saint told him to stop eating opium as it would  affect his health. At this, the opium-addict said that it was not possible for him to do so and requested for a solution to his problem. The saint asked him how much opium he was used to taking every day and was shown a certain measure.

“The saint then got a piece of chalk, equal to the measure shown by the man and told him that he may continue eating opium but should not take more than the size of the chalk piece each day. The opium eater was quite happy, but he was also told that every day he should write OM three times on a blackboard with that chalk. In this manner, the chalk reduced in size every day and so too the amount of opium the person was consuming. Ultimately this habit was removed.

"The Bhagavad Gita states that if a large number of impure ideas enter your head, it cannot be rectified all of a sudden.” Then, according to Swami, how to get rid of these manifold bad habits?



38. During a divine discourse given in 1974, Swami narrated the story of a compassionate king who had many lessons for all: “Though endowed with power and authority, prosperity and wealth, emperor Sibi was a genuine sadhak (spiritual seeker), having attained a high stage in detachment and the spirit of renunciation.

“God decided to test whether his achievements were deep-rooted and unshakeable. Agni (the God of Fire) and Indra (the God of the Heavens) took on the forms of a dove and a hawk. The hawk (Indra) pursued the dove (Agni) across the sky, until the frightened bird fell into the lap of Sibi sitting on his throne, pleading for protection from the hawk.

“As befitted his dharma (noble nature), Sibi gave word that he would save the dove from its enemy and assured it full protection. At that moment, the hawk presented itself before the emperor and demanded its meal - its legitimate prey. ‘I am hungry, I had secured my food, you have deprived me of my meal,’ it complained. ‘Of what use is all your vaunted spirituality, if you rob me of my nourishment?’ it lamented.”

What did emperor Sibi do that made him famous for his compassionate nature?


39. During the 1972 Summer Showers, Swami narrated a story to explain how one can choose to lead a peaceful life: “A man traveling on a hot summer day stopped under a shady tree by the side of the road. When he went into that cool shade, he was overjoyed.

“He said to himself, ‘I am lucky to be able to find a cool place; how fortunate I will be if I get a glass of cool water too?’ Instantaneously, a tumbler of water came down. After he drank that water he thought, ‘Now I have quenched my thirst, but how happy I will be if there is a good bed here because this floor is too hard and rough to sleep on.' At once, a big soft bed manifested. He then thought, ‘Even in my house I do not possess such a bed and pillow. If my wife comes here and sees, how glad she will feel?’ Immediately his wife too appeared. He saw her and thought, ‘Is she my wife or a demon? Will she eat me?’ The moment he got this thought, she ate him!”

Swami explained further, “The tree under the shade of which he sat was the kalpa vriksha, the wish fulfilling tree. When the traveler sat under it, whatever good things he desired, he got instantly. But when he thought of bad things, they too happened. This world is also like a kalpa vriksha...”

In this scenario, what is the wisest thing to do as directed by Bhagawan?


40. During a divine discourse given in 1995, Bhagawan narrated a story to stress on the lesson 'to forgive is divine’: “Once an ochre-robed person was walking in a bazaar. School boys and college-going youngsters followed him talking flippantly and having fun behind him. However the holy man took no notice of them. He was proceeding from one village to another. The students then tried to provoke him by using abusive language. But the mendicant walked on and sat under a tree on the outskirts of the village. The students went on railing at him and finally exhausted all their stock of abuse.

“When they became silent the mendicant asked them, ‘Children, have you any more words to be used against me? Come out with them now, as I have to go to the next village.’ One insolent youth asked: ‘What will happen when you go to the next village?’ The holy man replied: ‘Child, I will do nothing. Praise or blame attaches only to this body and not to my Self. But there in the next village are a large number of people who have high regard for me. If you indulge in abusing me there, the villagers will trash you. I am informing you in advance to save you from this.’

“On hearing this, the students had a change of heart. They felt: ‘In spite of all the insults we leveled at him, this noble being was totally unaffected; he did not lose his temper and taught us the right behaviour.’ They repented and prostrated at the feet of the mendicant craving for his forgiveness.”

Swami reiterated: “Kshama or forbearance is a quality that every man should possess...”

According to Bhagawan, why is it so important to cultivate forbearance?



Dear Reader, did you like this quiz? Is it too difficult? Is it interactive enough? Would you like more such quizzes? Please help us in serving you better by writing to [email protected] mentioning your name and country. Thank you for your time.

- Heart2Heart Team

 

 

 
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