Volume 14 - Issue 07
July 2016
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Posted on: July 02, 2016


Guru Poornima Special Offering
(Daily Episode)

Part - 24

In 2006, eager to start a service which will help everyone to connect with Bhagawan's teachings on a daily basis, Radio Sai began 'Sai Inspires'. All who subscribed to this service, received an email from us which had a concise message of Baba accompanied with His image. This daily offering was received well, and soon the subscriptions grew. Today nearly 100,000 people from all corners of the world wait for this message to help them tide over their day with peace and ease. The power inherent in these discourse capsules is indeed tremendous. How much we benefit from it and how best we harness this energy depends purely on how seriously we ruminate over these words and how sincerely we put our learning into action. To help us in this noble and elevating exercise, Prof. G. Venkataraman has taken time out to elaborate on these messages. His reflections will not only give us a deeper understanding into what the Lord is communicating to us but also give us tips to translate them into our daily practical life with more ease.

The best way to value the Master is to master His values. As we prepare to celebrate Guru Poornima (July 19), when we pay our respects and obeisance to the Divine Master, let us work to offer Him the tribute that the Lord loves the most from us - to make our lives His message, to make His love and wisdom shine in us. To aid us in this endeavour we have this series where Prof. Venkataraman for the next 26 days from June 9, 2016 shares his insights on select Sai Inspires messages. We hope this will help us to understand His teachings better and bolster our determination to walk on the sacred path.

Sai Inspires Message


One filled with Divine Love will be fearless, will seek nothing from others, and will be spontaneous and selfless in expressing his love... There is no need to pray for gifts from God. God will give of His own accord what is good for any devotee... God will decide what to give, when to give, and where. Hence, all actions should be dedicated to God and He should be allowed to decide what the devotee is fit to receive - the devotee should not try to tie Him down with demands. When, filled with Pure Love and Total Faith the devotee leaves everything to God, He will take care of His devotee. The problem is that people today lack such firm faith.

• Divine Discourse, June 20, 1996.


Sai Ram. As most of us are aware, the one theme that dominates most of Swami’s Divine Discourses is LOVE. Now Swami uses the word Prema or PURE LOVE ever so often that we all think we know what it is. Have not millions of books been written on love? And what about the thousands of movies and TV serials and soap operas devoted to the subject? Arguing along those lines, everyone believes that he or she is an expert and really knows what LOVE is all about. Indeed, when students or, for that matter other groups shout, “We love You Swami,” one wonders whether they really understand what they are saying. I do not wish to appear like a spoil-sport or as a supercilious critic who imagines he is an expert on LOVE whereas millions of devotees who are constantly expressing their love for Swami do not know even the A, B, C of it. At the same time, it is absolutely important to understand that what we normally mean by the word 'love' is quite different from what Swami means by LOVE. Few bother to appreciate it, and so this reflection would be devoted entirely to this perception difference, if I might call it that.

The best way of explaining the difference that I just referred to would be to go back to an extensive series of Discourses that Swami delivered in 1984, on the Essence of the Bhagavad Gita. In the course of that, Swami says [this is a paraphrase]:

O man, do you realise that when you say you love a person, you are loving that person for your own sake and not for that person’s sake? Also, that true love does not ever change?

Let me decode this cryptic remark with an example. A little boy says he loves his mother; of course he does, and so do all little boys all over the world, at that age, I might add. But then is it not also a fact that after marriage, hundreds of thousands of young men, if not millions, forsake their mothers because they want to please their wives who do not like their husbands devoting attention to their mothers?

In particular, most of them are dead against being burdened with the old-age problems of their mothers-in-law. I know you would be up in arms with a zillion arguments to the contrary, but please hold on for a second and hear me out! Swami says that it is equally true that when a mother says she loves her son, she means she loves him for her own sake. Swami goes on to add that there is a deep psychological and philosophical reason as well for such attitudes, adding that these issues were explained long, long ago by Sage Yajnavalkya to his wife Maitreyi.

Swami’s point is simply this. Having been born in this world, almost all of us without exception are held back by many attitudes, pre-conceived notions, prejudices, etc., all of which tend to make us selfish and look for the protection of self-interest in anything that we do. Yes, the degree might vary from person to person, but the fact is that there is always an undercurrent of swartham and swaprayojanam as Swami refers to selfishness and self-interest, colouring all our actions. Thus, while it is true that every mother does shower a lot of love on her little children and even makes many a sacrifice for their sake, it is also true that when in her old age these children sort of leave her to look after herself, she does become disappointed and at times even bitter.

Such feelings of betrayal are quite normal and people would even say that there is nothing wrong in the abandoned mother feeling that way. However, let us leave aside such issues about who is right and who is wrong and instead come back to the word LOVE. The interesting point is that while we understand that word in a particular way, in God’s dictionary that same word has an entirely different meaning. That is what Swami explains to us again and again, and that also is what we simply do not want to hear! Otherwise, why would Swami repeat what God means by the word LOVE?

I know all this would make many of you quite uncomfortable and even angry perhaps. But bear with me for a few moments, while I highlight what God means by the word LOVE. As Swami said in His 1984 Discourses, while humans love God for their own sake meaning they expect God would respond by granting them all their wishes, God loves humans for their sake and not His. This is how Swami explains the difference [a paraphrase]:

O humans! You all say that you love Me. Yes, you do love Me no doubt, but that is not Pure and unselfish Love; rather, it is tinged by selfishness, meaning that you want Me to grant this and that. Sure, I can grant all that you want and might even do it. But are you aware that there is something I really want to give but which none of you are too eager about? The tragedy is that you are not even aware of what I am so eager to give you. And yet I am ready to give you all that you want so that one day you may ask what I am so eager to give!

The question now becomes: “What is it that we all are anxious that God should grant us, and what is it that God is so eager to give but we are not so enthusiastic about?” The answer has been given by Swami Himself. Basically, we want happiness and God also wants to grant us happiness. Believe it or not, the problem lies with the brand we want and the brand He is ready to offer! To put it differently, we want worldly happiness whereas He is more eager to give us Ananda or Bliss which is nothing but Eternal Happiness. Swami says [this is a paraphrase]:

You want happiness no doubt, but all of it connected with things material. Are you not aware that anything material is transient? You buy a brand new shining car. You are proud of it and parade it all over the place, showing off and feeling great. However, soon your car becomes old and a beat-up old jalopy, while others around you are sporting the latest, shiny models. At this stage, you no longer like your car and wish for something better than what your competitor has!

You want happiness, and I fully appreciate that. In fact, Bliss being your nature, deep down that is what you are actually hungering for. However, having lost your way in this world, thanks to Maya I might add, instead of seeking Bliss which belongs to the realm of the Heart, you are seeking worldly happiness which is connected entirely with the mind. I know you are making a big mistake, but out of pity, I do grant many of your worldly wishes but you end up with the cycle of pleasure and pain, instead of Pure Happiness. When you knock on the wrong door, how can you get a proper response? I have cautioned you about this on any number of times; but alas, you hardly pay any attention! I do hope that one day in the future, you would really seek what I have actually come down to give!

Let me put it to you in black and white; what you really want is Bliss and that would be readily available to you if you seek in the Heart, but sadly, you are not doing that.

Keeping this in mind, let us get back to the Sai Quote we started with. Basically, Swami wants us to replace the Love we have for God which is strongly tinged with selfishness and self-interest, with Real Love for God; this is what Swami refers to as Divine Love. At this point, let us go back again to the Sai Quote:

One filled with Divine Love will be fearless, will seek nothing from others, and will be spontaneous and selfless in expressing his love... There is no need to pray for gifts from God. God will give of His own accord what is good for any devotee... God will decide what to give, when to give, and where.

I hope that bit is now easier to understand. Assuming that, let me go back to the 1984 Discourses. As we all know, in life we appreciate reciprocity. If A shows courtesy to B, then B expects a similar response from A. In the same way, if God loves us selflessly, it implies that He would expect selfless love from us too. What does loving God selflessly mean? It means that we have FULL FAITH in Him, and are ready to accept anything that He gives us as Prasadam and nothing else. Let us say we are doing something to please Swami. It does not work out and we feel dejected. We also complain, “Swami, what’s happening? I was doing this to show my love to You, and You are putting obstacles in my way? Is this fair?” By the way, years ago, I used to do this sort of thing quite frequently. It was only much later that I realised that for God success and failure mean nothing; what is important is the quality of our faith and our sincerity.

There is one more thing, and that is the sense of doer-ship. The moment I think I am doing something for God, it means I have forgotten that truly speaking God is the Real Doer! And a reminder about that comes via tough obstacles or even total failure. As an eager beaver in the early days after coming here, I tried to do many things; almost all of them were projects connected with the Hospital, and almost all of them bombed, meaning they flopped. For a long time, I was distraught, until it dawned on me to ‘let go’. After that, things changed; I did my best and left it to Swami. Some did not work out, but to make up for it, things also happened which I did not even dream about. I realised what the Quote says. Just to remind you, here it is again:

Hence, all actions should be dedicated to God and He should decide what the devotee is fit to receive. When everything is left to God out of pure love and total faith, He will take care of His devotee.

I have tried it and can tell you that it really works! Why don’t you too give it a try?

All the best and Jai Sai Ram.

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Radio Sai Team

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