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Posted on: Oct 20, 2015
Sathya Sai Speaks
CELEBRATING 75 YEARS OF AVATAR DECLARATION
20 October is a historic and momentous day. Bhagawan would often refer to this day as ‘the day the change happened’. Recollecting that day Bhagawan would recount how on the way to school He lost a collar pin that was gifted by the Municipal Chairman of Bellary. With the pin the last strands of worldly connections dropped away, He would say. And for our redemption and thousands like you and me, He declared Himself to be Sathya Sai Baba. This day is even more special this year as it happens to be the 75th year since that grand declaration. As part of this special Sathya Sai Speaks Series, we have been offering discourses Bhagawan gave as part of the 50th Birthday Celebrations. But for this month of October, to commemorate this special occasion we bring you the divine discourse Baba delivered on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Avatar Declaration Day, on 20 Oct 1990.
On that day Bhagawan spoke extensively about HIi childhood with sweet details and profound messages. We are not presenting those nectarous anecdotes as part of this Sathya Sai Speaks article. We strongly recommend that you watch the 'Sathya to Sai' video series in which all these incidents are covered in great detail. For the children, and the children in us, there is the ‘
His Story - Comics Series’, which presents all these episodes pictorially. You could also listen to the entire discourse Bhagawan delivered on that day, 20 Oct 1990, by following this link. In this article we wish to place before you a few profound points Bhagawan made about the Avatar, His role and relationship with the rest of creation. Let us begin as always with the short but profound poem.
On the basis of time everything happens in the world. The coming and going happens on the basis of time. It is again the time which is responsible for the prosperity or poverty. For all living beings time is the primordial cause. There is no one, who does not bend before time. There is no one who is not conquered by time on this planet.
In this plane of existence that is bound by the dictates of time, the One who is beyond Time manifests. We refer to this phenomenon as the Avatar. Though He adorns the limitations of Time, He is ever beyond it too. Though He appears and disappears, comes and goes, He is ever present. Bhagawan elucidates:
All the bodies, heads, eyes and legs are only the reflections and limbs of God. Every being is only the reflection of God. When this is a matter of Truth, there is nothing like coming and going, birth and death for Divinity. This body has been given in order to sanctify it, through time and action. ‘Salutations to the One who is Time; Salutations to the conqueror of Time; Salutations to He who removes pain inflicted by Time; Salutations to the one who transcends Time; Salutations to the embodiment of Time; Salutations to the one adored by Time’ – these various approbations are used to indicate the close relationship between Time and Divinity. God cannot be comprehended by any measure. There are three methods of proving or measuring an entity - the direct, the inferential and by words. All these proofs are applicable to the people who are bound by the world and the creation. But as God transcends all these things, He has been described as Aprameya (The Unfathomable).
If such is the inseparable connection between us and God, if we are mere limbs of the Divine, what makes us fall and wilt under the might of Time? What makes us impure when our source is Purity itself? Bhagawan explains beautifully in the clip to follow. He also hints at what has to be dispensed with if we wish to return to the state of the absolute again.
One who goes by what is merely seen is an animal. Man has got the outer vision, whereas God has inner vision. Only when man develops inner vision, he would be able to experience Divinity. Man’s heart which should be pure like the ocean of milk, has today become polluted with attachment and hatred. When man transforms his heart which is the ocean of milk, into a sacred, pure and pristine one, then alone God will come and dwell there as Sesha Sai. The colour of milk is pure white. The whiteness is a symbol for Satwik nature. The ocean of milk (Ksheera Sagaram) is a symbol of man's pure heart. God dwells in such hearts that have transformed into the Ksheera Sagaram. When the tortoises and sharks of attachment and hatred enters the ocean of the heart, it begins to collect impurities.
When this ocean of pure milk is polluted with such impurities it eventually becomes an ocean of salt. Human life has emerged from this ocean of milk. We see countless waves rising from the vast ocean. Not one wave looks similar to another. Each wave looks unique in comparison to another. Although each wave appears unique, the basis for all these innumerable waves is ocean itself. What really exists in all waves is the ocean water. In the same way, in the ocean of Sat-Chit-Ananda (Truth-Consciousness-Bliss), the Divine Principle whose very nature is Sat-Chit-Ananda takes these many forms as unique entities and miniature aspects (Amshas).
Names and forms may appear varied but the origin, source and substratum for everything is Sat-Chit-Ananda. Every human being is the embodiment of Sat-Chit-Ananda. But swayed by attachments and hatred, enslaved by worldly and outward desires, we have forgotten our real and essential form.
Bhagawan explained how this entry of these feeling of like and dislike, attachment and hatred leads us away from the state of Divinity to impurity. But in everyday life this impurity manifests itself as restlessness. Swami would often say, “Shanti (Peace) is my Swabhava (nature).” When we move away from this state, we become targets of restlessness and agitation. But there is a way to work back too. Bhagawan explains in the following clip.
Every man aspires for peace. Peace doesn’t exist elsewhere. We must inquire into the reason for this restlessness. If we can find the reason for restlessness, peace automatically dawns. There are three members in a house - father, mother and son. As long as there is mutual cooperation, faith, love and understanding among the three of them, there will be peace with them and at home. If there is no harmony amongst the three, if they cannot relate to each other and there is hatred, jealousy and misunderstanding, they will have to experience agitations and restlessness in the house. What is the reason for this peace and restlessness? Since there is no unity and there is hatred, there is restlessness. The principle of our mind, the meaning of the words we speak and the actions we do (these are three entities). Here Mind and Words stand for Mother and Father. Actions are like the Son. When these three are united, then we need not search for happiness. Today we find restlessness among people because of the disharmony between thought, word and deed. Every person who unites these three aspects will be filled with peace.
We cannot hold someone else responsible for our restlessness. No one is responsible for this. Your own efforts are the true cause. It is said, “The one who has unity of thought, word and deed is a noble soul (Mahatma). That is true Peace. As these three are not in consonance with each other, today’s man suffers restless. We tend to think, ‘So and so is responsible for my restlessness, this action or that event was the reason behind my losing peace.’ But it is foolishness to think so. You alone are responsible for your restlessness. Only when we recognise and understand the reason for it, we can get rid of this restlessness. When we develop this Trikarana Shuddhi (Unity and purity of thought, word and deed) and nurture love, we will become one whose lamp of life (Jivana Jyoti) shines forth and gives light; not only to us but also to those around, dispelling the darkness of ignorance.
What is the need for an Avatar then? If we are essentially Divine and to bring out that Divinity we have to work on ourselves, what is the role of an Avatar or for that matter the role of worship itself? Members of the Sri Sathya Sai Organisation, Andhra Pradesh, celebrated the 50th year of declaration by taking around a lamp lit by Bhagawan to different villages. Referring to that event and alluding to the analogy of a lamp, Bhagawan explains to us the answer to that question.
There is no object in this manifest world that is greater than Jyoti (Light). The power immanent in light is not to be found in any other object. Light has the power to dispel darkness. This ability is not to be found in any other object. Hence the prayer, 'Tamasoma jyotir gamaya (Lead us from darkness to light)'. Light has yet another power too. Light (or flame) always moves upwards. Even if you keep a lamp in a pit, the light will only spread upwards. Dispelling darkness and moving higher are the two remarkable characteristics of light. However, if the light has to shine incessantly as Akhanda Jyoti it needs a certain prerequisites. First of all, the Jyoti (lamp) needs a container. There must be a wick (to light the flame). There must be oil in the wick and in the container. These three are still not sufficient to make the jyoti burn. A match-stick is needed to light the lamp.
Can you make a light burn merely with a container, a wick and oil?
Can you make jewels if you have only gold and gems?
Can you have a garland with a needle, thread and flowers alone?
You need someone to make the garland out of them. You need a goldsmith to fashion the jewels from gold and gems. Similarly, there is need for someone to light the lamp, even when you have the other four materials. He is God. It is when you seek God, human nature is transformed into Divinity.
After those profound messages Bhagawan reflects on the grandeur in the growth of Puttaparthi and the subtle message therein. After all it was the celebration of the day that would make Puttaparthi the home for many millions from different parts of the world. It was after His momentous declaration that Baba promised His mother that He would make Puttaparthi the centre of all His activities.
What has been accomplished at Prasanthi Nilayam in the past fifty years could not have been achieved even in five hundred years. Although many divine descents (avatars) have taken place, such stupendous changes in fifty years in unprecedented. All this has been accomplished by this single hand. A splendid university has been established here. We have brought a planetarium here. In a small village such as this, even an aerodrome is being constructed. The name of Prasanthi Nilayam is known in all parts of the globe. The whole world exists in miniature in Prasanthi Nilayam. People from all countries are gathering here. Prasanthi Nilayam is now a mini-world! You are going to witness much more of this on November 23. Will people from other countries come here even if they are invited? No! But no invitations, pamphlets or promotional literature have been sent to anyone. I am even advising many who wish to come not to do so. Such supreme attraction is possible only for the Divine! The fragrance emanating from a flower spreads all over. Does the flower invite the bee? No! But the bee rushes to the flower of its own accord to taste the nectarine honey in it. The bee goes to such fragrant flowers; does a bee ever go to a plastic flower? Where is Argentina? It is almost at one end of the globe. In Argentina, Bhajans are being held in every home. In Chile and Mayama, especially in Mayama all the military officers do Nagarsankirtan.
If this is what Bhagawan had to say 25 years ago, one can imagine the growth, crowds and festivities in the past few decades. In the end we conclude with Bhagawan expressing what He expects of us, when we claim to be His devotees and followers.
Embodiments of Love! If you have been able to conduct this festival of lamps (carrying it from house to house), it is not the result of something external, it has sprung spontaneously from within. Therefore more than lighting the lamps outside, develop the Jyoti within you and make it glow with lustre and effulgence by purifying your hearts. All Sathya Sai Organisations should transform into an organisation permeated with love. All differences based on individuality must be forsaken. No room should be given to divisive forces. Differences of caste, religion and creed should be totally eschewed. Morality should be considered our caste. We should consider love and affection as our religion.
The honour of our community depends on Morality;
If there is no morality, the community would come to ruin
The community which has morality is a true community.
To the question, "To which community (or caste) do you belong?" you should answer, “I belong to the caste of the morality." If anyone asks for your religion, declare: “Love is my religion." Develop devotion to God on this basis. Devotion alone protects the entire world and nothing else. No government, no bombs, no tanks can save the world. Devotees alone are the protectors of the world. Nurture devotion, having the well-being of the world in view, and participate in Nagarsankirtan (going round one's village or town performing bhajans).
On that day, 75 years ago, Bhagawan told His shocked sister-in-law, “I have to go, My devotees are waiting for Me.” He seemed to have heard the call of our ailing and pining souls. There was no more time to while away incognito, the sun had to come from behind the dark clouds to fill with light and warmth the devout. But wouldn’t it be a wasted opportunity if we do not make use of this sunshine in our lives? As Bhagawan would say, “The devotee is the cultivator for the field of his heart, who must irrigate the field with the water of Prema, manure it with Sadhana, sow the seeds of the divine name and fence it with spiritual discipline.” Thinking of Him inspires love in us no doubt, but it is indeed important to embrace the Sadhana of going through HIs words with sincerity and following the discipline of practicing the message there in. Hoping we all will take Bhagawan’s words as our very breath and live by it, we conclude with the Bhajan Bhagawan sang after the discourse.
- Radio Sai Team
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