A Pointing Finger
Sri Swami Chidananda
Worshipful homage to the eternal, Universal Spirit Divine, that Worshipful Cosmic Being who is our source, origin, support and strength, fulfilment and goal-ultimate. May His divine grace be upon you all!
Loving adorations to our revered and beloved holy Master Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj in whose spiritual presence we are all assembled in this early morning spiritual fellowship in this Samadhi Hall of his holy Ashram on the banks of divine Mother Ganga. May his glance of grace, Gurukripa and his hand of benediction be upon you all sincere seeking souls.
The bell rings and reminds by marking the arrival of a certain time for some specific purpose that time does not stand still, it passes. Therefore, beloved Sadhaks and Seekers, Jijnasus and Mumukshus, even as time is ever moving, we have to keep pace with it and also keep moving. Movement is the great law of evolution, nature. Movement is the secret of success. Movement is the one condition of progress. But movement does not merely mean motion. There may be continuous, unbroken motion without any movement. Movement in time and space indicates or symbolises a certain progression. Motion can be round and round and round, and it may be involved in a single location. It may be in the same place, take you nowhere as you say. Upward movement and forward movement, Godward movement, movement upon the path of evolution which constitutes the essence of evolution and progress, does not occur by itself. And this movement has to be initiated, maintained, directed and it has to be safeguarded also. Movement can come to an abrupt stop but it need not necessarily be of the same rate because there are ups and downs in life. All things do not remain the same, all conditions do not remain the same. A person keeps moving forward and a pace is of a certain rate, but it is buffeted by strong winds in the opposite direction. One has to struggle against the winds and the movement is naturally slowed down. As we had occasion to mention when your movement is in the direction of the flow of a stream or a river, the movement requires no special effort and it is rapid. But when you have to move against the stream and you have to swim against the current, then naturally the movement will be slower because it has to overcome opposition, overcome a contrary current. This is to be expected because we are in a world of diversity.
Just as these facts are true about the outer physical universe of ours, they are also, to some extent, true about your inner psychological and spiritual universe within.
Movements, progression in spiritual life means progress of our entire being, of our mind, our emotions, our sentiments, our thoughts, the quality of our thoughts, the direction of our thoughts, the motivations of our thoughts. They are all involved in contributing to the correctness, the rightness, wisdom of any inner movement of your real inner being, your vital being. Even so your higher vital being, the intelligence, the reason dictates, if it is clouded, if it is overcome by strong emotion, passion, sentiment, the reason may start working in a topsy-turvy way justifying that which is not to be justified, supporting that which is not to be supported. Then you create your own spiritual problem, you create your own spiritual situation, problematic situation, complicated situation. There should be a harmony between the higher vital being and the vital being upon the mental level of thoughts, emotions, sentiments, imaginations, memories. There should be harmony—that which harmonises the outer physical manifestations of these inner movements and the inner movements upon the vital mental level and the inner movements upon the higher vital, intellectual level. That which harmonises is your ideal and goal, your philosophy of life, your principles of life, and the living of your life, the principle of your conduct and character. We live by certain principles. We abide by certain time-honoured truths expounded in our scriptures. We live by certain goals and ideals and they have the power and efficacy, effectiveness of bringing about a unification, a harmony, a oneness in all levels of our being. Therein lies the importance of these factors, principles for living, and ideal for life and well-conceived goal for our day-to-day living of our life, our thoughts, words, emotions, moods, motivations, sentiments, actions. The harmony, the unification, integration of your personality depend upon your unified ideal and goal, your principles and your philosophy of life. You must be very very clear about what is ‘plus’ for you and what is ‘minus’ for you. And the source of our wisdom, the material for our deciding, choosing, selecting, rejecting and deciding is our heritage of wisdom we have inherited from our past. Saints, Sages, mystics, men of wisdom have not come and gone in vain. They have left something for posterity and that is our inheritance, our asset, our wealth. Their advent, their life, and even the manner of their passing is for us a permanent endowment, a light upon the path, a pointing finger, a certain directing ideal. If this background is recognised for its value and from time to time you compare your life with the ideals handed down to you, then you have a safe term of reference by which you can direct this movement forward towards the chosen goal which Spiritual Life constitutes both upon the outer plane as well as the vital plane of the mind and the higher vital plane of your reasoning, knowledge, intellect, Buddhi. Ideals co-ordinate them and harmonise them. Certain unswerving eternal principles, values—co-ordinate them, bring about a harmony in them. They integrate them, giving them great force and a shining idea! placed before you always. It becomes of extreme help in times of an inner conflict between the vital and the higher vital, between the wisdom of reason and the waywardness of the mind. In resolving such a conflict, it is these who come to your rescue. Your ideal and goal, your principles you have adopted for life, your philosophy of life, your sense of values, they constitutes the deciding factors, patiently evolved through years of spiritual living, of study, of Satsang, of interacting with wise ones. They can be your real wealth and asset, if constantly you keep turning to them, for that constitutes the inner light, inner guidance. Therefore, the use and meaning of interacting with spiritual people, is the constant going back again and again to these sources of knowledge, of study and reflection. Unless you are reflective, you cannot draw forth the full value of your study. They may make you a well-informed person but they need not necessarily make you a wise person, nor a successful person unless study is backed by reflection. In this way, keep moving. As they say, we have to carefully know the distinction between motion and movement and the spiritual movement within and without and the co-ordinating and integrating factors, goals and ideals, sublime principles, a certain direction, a philosophy of life, with constant alertness and vigilance. They are your friends. These are the ingredients of steady, unhampered spiritual progress, overcoming all contrary movements. May thus the inner spirit guide you. May the all-pervading Cosmic Being be your inner light and guide. May beloved Master Swami Sivananda and the likes of him, grant you success in this sublime quest, in this noble endeavour in this greatest of all achievements, for which you have come here, in both senses, coming into this world of human beings, coming into this Uttarakhand of India, coming into this Sivananda Ashram which is an arena of Sadhana of ‘being and doing’. So, God has been good and He has given more than what could be expected and it is up to the Sadhak to see the value of what God has given you and be wise and put to the highest use this supreme triple value—a human status with the power of reasoning, and understanding, and the spiritual environment of India and the sanctified life in Uttarakhand on the banks of Ganga, and residence in holy Ashram of a Saint, of a Saint who came to proclaim Sadhana to modern mankind. Your life is Sadhana. It is not a passage of time, it is not a pursuit of pleasure, it is neither sense satisfaction nor desire fulfilment. Your life is a Sadhana. It is in this Ashram, holy Ashram of such a being who gave us a new perspective on our life, a new look, and a new understanding, both in depth and sublimity of high vision about our life. Make Sadhana the keynote of your life. Verily, make life itself your key Sadhana, the central Sadhana. Thus admonished and initiated the Holy Master, in whose presence you are all sitting now, in whose presence these words are spoken and in whose presence these words are being heard by you. Heard by you. Whether these words are being listened to or not, that I cannot say, you only know—but this much I can say, they are certainly being heard by you. One cannot help hearing noise but one has to decide whether one will listen to it or just keep hearing and not listening. In that, both God and Guru are helpless and even more helpless is the speaker himself because it is for the hearers to listen. God can call and Guru can speak and a person like me may say something but whatever it is, it comes from God, it comes from the Guru without whom one is nothing, one is a zero. If you take up a book and read wisdom, try to imbibe wisdom, it comes directly from God because He is the source of all wisdom.
Therefore, hear, listen, reflect and keep moving onward, onward towards the Great Goal and bless yourself.
Thus is the sharing, and may God bless you all!