Om Sri Ganeshaya Namah!
Om Namo Bhagavate Sivanandaya!
Om Namo Bhagavate Chidanandaya!
Om Namo Bhagavate Krishnanandaya!
Knowledge, Meditation And Spiritualising Your Life
by Sri Swami Chidananda
The supreme goal of life has been declared to be brahma-jnana, the ultimate spiritual knowledge that brings about enlightenment and illumination and liberates the individual soul from the necessity of once again coming into this plane of pain and death—putting an end to this unending wheel of transmigration.
Wisdom alone, Self-realisation, Self-knowledge, brahma-jnana, alone can liberate one, not ritualistic worship, outer ceremonials, not sacraments, not pilgrimage, nor vows, disciplines, charity or merits. These are good, but even if you engage in such meritorious, pious religious activity for a hundred births, nay a hundred thousand births, unless you have illumination or gnosis or jnana there is no liberation.
These good actions are to be engaged in so that you may avoid getting caught in the trap of bad actions. That is their value. They keep us going in the right and proper direction and thus become a means of preventing regression. But unless Self-realisation can take place, unless one is illumined with enlightenment—that knowledge which transcends all other knowledge, attaining which one does not come back into this world of pain and death, knowing which everything else is known—then one has not found the only and safe raft that can take one across the ocean of samsara.
Therefore, jnana has this supreme value. Vedanta means jnana. Jnana is the great purifier. Attaining jnana all seeds of past karmas are burnt to ashes. One becomes liberated then and there. And ultimately deep meditation is the one and only sadhana that can bring about illumination. In whatever way one describes illumination, meditation is the ultimate portal, gateway, to blessedness.
All yogas culminate in meditation, whether it is japa yoga, kirtan yoga, kundalini yoga, karma yoga, bhakti yoga, dhyana yoga or jnana yoga. Ultimately, all the angas (limbs) of these various yogas culminate in meditation, and in and through deep meditation alone illumination is attained. The word meditation as such may not be used, but it is deep meditation that is mentioned in the description of all yogas. In the nine modes of devotion, meditation does not seem to be mentioned, but atma-nivedanam (total self-surrender) means nothing but that—becoming a zero, totally losing oneself through concentrated devotion into a state of meditation. It means meditation.
Knowledge and meditation are, therefore, indispensable requirements for supreme attainment in the spiritual life. But then, as long as we are conscious of our body and we are in a state of identification with the body, the relative reality is a reality. Thus when we are living in this world of men, engaged in activity, having diverse human relationships—acting, interacting and reacting—we cannot help behaving in a manner as situations require. So, there is every risk of forgetting our main mission in life, what we are in reality and slipping into a state of unwisdom, of aviveka and avichara, and getting trapped in that state of unwisdom.
We cannot be in a state of meditation for twenty-four hours a day. We cannot keep up that awareness, that jnana, twenty-four hours a day, for forcibly the outer world and things in it will draw us out of our inner equipoise and get us involved in this outer phenomenal world. Even the avataras have to silently bow to their own law.
Many new articles have been posted at Sri Swami Krishnanandaji's site since my last posting. They are:
The 16th Anniversary of the Punyatithi Aradhana of our Revered and Beloved Sri Swami Krishnanandaji Maharaj was on October 28th this year. For this occasion the following have been uploaded:
Yours in the service of Gurudev,
By Swami Sivananda
This Brahmacharya Drama was originally published in the book ‘Sure Ways for Success in Life and God-Realisation.’ It was staged for the first time in Villupuram on 6th April, 1940 by Sri V. S. Sundaram and his friends in aid of the Red Cross Society under the kind patronage and presence of V. N. Kudva Esq., I. C. S., District Collector, South Arcot. It was indeed a grand success. It should be enacted every year by students of all schools and colleges in India and abroad and by the general public, Institutes and temples. This book should also be introduced as a text-book in all schools and colleges. It is the onerous duty of the Headmasters and the Principals to give ethical training to the students. Character is power.
This book is completely revised and enlarged. Many suitable inspiring philosophical songs and soul-stirring Sankirtan Dhwanis are added in this book. In order to place the book within the easy reach of all students and the public, it is brought in a separate book-form. This book contains the essence of Yoga, Bhakti and Vedanta as well.
If there is no convenience for the staging of the Drama, one student can recite the whole Drama within an hour. The Drama can be enacted without the songs and Dhwanis. If you are not able to catch the right tune indicated, you can sing in your own way.
There are seven Appendices at the end. They contain a fund of important information on the subject of Brahmacharya. There are practical instructions also for the attainment of Brahmacharya. Those, who wish to learn the songs and the mode of acting, can come to Ananda Kutir for a week. I shall teach them.
For more information, please see: Brahmacharya Drama
YOUR DESTINY: A certain devotee had written a book entitled, India’s Destiny. A copy was presented to the Master, who thanked him and then asked, “What is your destiny?”
“My destiny ... my destiny ... ?”
The devotee fumbled for words, drawing smiles and muffled laughter all around!
"We have two great problems in life: the senses and the ego. These are our terrible masters, and we cannot satisfy them. They are devils indeed. However much we may feed them, their hunger seems to be insatiable. If we go on feeding the senses, they go on burning more and more, like a conflagration. The more we go on feeding our ego, the stouter and the fatter it becomes, and the more we try to pamper it. We have no other difficulty in life. These are our only difficulties: our senses and our egoism. But these are not what is good for us. The ego does not give us what is good nor promise what is good, and the senses of course are worse still. The great Masters whose revelations are recorded in the scriptures are intent upon the good of man, rather than merely pampering his temporal needs. They are the real mothers and fathers for us. While our physical parents have given birth to this visible body of ours and taken care of it for some time in their own manner, the great sages who take care of our inner life are our real parents, because our life is not exhausted merely by the physical body of social relations." – Swami Krishnananda
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