Monthly eMagazine of the International Vedanta Mission
In This Issue
Atma Bodha - Shloka-40
Is Time an Obstacle?
Freedom from Likes & Dislikes
Mission / Ashram Progs
From Poojya Guruji
Vedanta Sandesh Spreading Love & Light
Monthly eMagazine of the International Vedanta Mission Sharing the message of Vedanta and Sanatan Dharma
Mar 2012 On the Net since 1995
Poojya Guruji Sri Swami Atmanandaji
Vedanta Ashram E/2948-50, Sudama Nagar Indore-452 009, India
Hari om! Getting happiness (Sukh-Prapti) and getting rid of sorrow (Dukh-Nivritti) is a natural & universal motivation of every living being. No one teaches this to anyone, yet everyone - humans or animals, rich or poor, young or old, educated or the uneducated, all seem to be propelled by these motivations alone. So intrinsic & deep-rooted is this drive. A child smiles & cries because of these factors, seeking of pleasures & gratifications are expressions of these alone. A devotee prays for this alone, a yogi too meditates with this wish alone. The world is busy working, fighting or dreaming, all for this sukh-prapti & dukh-nivritti. Our success & failures too are measured by these criterias alone, yet very few people have gone into the secret of what is happiness & what is sorrow. Strangely, the very existence of such a drive reveals that the person is not aware of the truth of either happiness or sorrow. A truly wise man is one who does not have this motivation at all. In fact a Brahma-Gyani has no desires whatsoever. They have neither suppressed their desires, nor effaced them, nor even fulfilled them in the worldly sense of the term; but because of some deep insights into life, all desires just drop, just as darkness disappears when sun rises, and all that remains is an infinite ocean of bliss - as their very self. Whoever pursues happiness or tries to insulate oneself from possible sorrows have some common premises. One, they are basically devoid of real happiness, (that is why they need to acquire it); and two, happiness lies outside in the world, apart from them, somewhere yonder in some acquisitions, situations or gratifications. Every person thereafter imposes happiness in some personal cordiality, and anything which creates the opposite scenario is associated with sorrow. These are our very own personal projections & conclusions, which even our near ones may not share at all. Others may have their own sets of likes & dislikes. Ignorance of the truth of happiness & sorrow, leads us to these inevitable delusory & baseless conclusions & conditionings - of likes & dislikes. Once likes & dislikes come, then lo, we enter the world of happiness & sorrow. Anything which is as per our like gives us happiness, and anything which comes under our dislike gives us sorrow. So first 'we' create happiness & sorrow, and then keep dancing to its tune. Happiness & Sorrow have no objective existence whatsoever. No one can name even one thing which can be universally associated with happiness or sorrow. That which gives happiness to A, may not give joy to B at all, and vice-versa; and this alone proves their relativity. Furthermore the object which appears to give happiness to A at one time, may not give happiness to the same person at a different time. So it is all in the mind alone. The conclusion of our self being limited & devoid of happiness too is a baseless conclusion of our mind alone, and so also the association of sukha & dukha in things around. The moment anyone truly realizes this mind game, then that very moment the mind is effortlessly free of all these projections, and becomes effortlessly quiet. Then there are no likes & dislikes, and thus obviously no sukha or dukha at all, just pure infinite being. Timeless, unfragmented, all-embracing, blissful. That which had appeared to be away & far, is discovered as our own essence & self. That alone is the meaning of statements like 'I am That'. Love & om,
Atma Bodha - Shloka 40 Vedanta Section
Jivanmukta revels in Infinite In the previous sloka as a part of nididhyasan the Acharya explained that the wise man should by his intelligence dissolve the entire objectifiable universe within the atman itself and incessantly contemplate on that one Atman. Elucidating further the idea of the previous sloka, herein is described the attitude of the realised one. Such a description does not make any difference to a Man of steady wisdom, but yet the scriptures and Acharyas go on to explain the state of the realised one as an inspiration for aspirants of this knowledge.
40 Roopa varnadikam sarvam vihaaya paramarthavit Paripoornachidanandaswaroopenaavatishthate Roopavarnadikam: form, color and the like; sarvam: all; vihaaya: having given up; paramarthavit: one who has realized the Supreme Brahma; paripoornachidanandaswaroopena: with undivided consciousness and Bliss Absolute; avatishthate: remains. That one who has realised the Supreme Brahman gives up all forms, colors and the like and rests in his own intrinsic form which is all contentenment, consciousness and Bliss Absolute. Roopavarnaadikam sarvam: The Acharya says that the one who has realised the Supreme Brahman as his very own Self , for him all the distinctions of Naam (names), roopa (forms), varna(Caste) and the like are all dropped off. All Roopa or forms are created with the five elements by the power of Maya and a name is given to that form to describe its essential properties. A name reflects the distinct nature of every creation making it easy to recognise the object. Being created of Maya all Names and forms do not have a substantial existence by themselves. Their existence is like a dream world and is constantly changing and is ephimeral. Moreover all that is manifested does not have an independant existence of its own, but is dependant on Parmatma. Maya does not have an independant existence and is not potent to create independantly. All creation of Maya from the gross to the most subtle is like a dream world which apVedanta Sandesh - Mar 2012
pears to be real as long as the dreamer identifies with himself as the dreamer and considers the dream to be real. When the dreamer awakens into the reality there is no dream world and no dreamer. Just as waking up negates the existence of the dream world. So too when a person awakens into his own reality, he drops off all the identifications with distinct forms and their aptitudes i.e their caste and color etc. This happening is like the breaking off of a ripened fruit from its branches. As soon as the fruit is ripe it drops its attachment to the tree and falls off effortlessly. An awakened person on seeing the substantial nature of the self castes off all his identifications. The attitude towards all the plurality too reflects a fragrance of divinity where the vision towards the outside world, its people and objects is not that of personal likes and dislikes but he sees the Supreme divinity in everyone and is able to have universal love and compassion for one and all.
Vihaaya Paramarthavit: The Parmarthavit i.e. the Wise Man who has realised the Sureme Brahman, one who is beyond the limitation of time, space and object. Such a realised one having dropped off all differences of the world of Maya revels in his blissful self. The word ‘Vihaaya’ used in this part of the sloka for giving up or dropping off is worth contemplating upon. Here the nature of dropping off all attachments or identifications is not that of an effortful nature. Neither it is any kind of suppression nor it is any kind of physical detachment from the world altogether. This dropping off is a fruit of seeing the unsubstantial and unreal nature of all things and worldly experiences. In the world as long as we consider something to be real and thereby being a source of happiness so long the sense attachment will continue to exist. As long as I continue to give importance to something as being real it will continue to be there for me. Hence the nature of giving up by a knowledgable person is casting of a sense of reality towards it. Just as in childhood the attachment to the rattle is given up as we grow up and see its insignificance. Today as a grown up if somebody was to give me a rattle to play with just because i was very attached to it in childhood, it would not be of any attraction to me. The detachment to the rattle is not a painful and effortful one, but it comes in gracefully when one no more sees it as a real source of joy. This kind of a detachment is a mental discrimination and does not require the physical absence of things. This mental discrimination at the spiritual level is done by seeing that everything in the world comes into existence because the Self- ‘I’ give it existence. If I do not give importance to some-
thing it does not exist for me. This kind of understanding of the truth is liberating. We come to realise that any kind of happiness, sorrow, bondage, comes to me as long as I give it existence and value. Otherwise by itself the world is inert and imaginary. This knowledge alone is thundered by the Vedantic philosophers. Paripoornachidananda Swaroopena avatishthate: The last two parts of the sloka describe the state of existence of the Realised One. He revels in his state of Self-contentment, pure consciousness and Blissful nature. Paripoorna: In the Gita Lord Krishna describes the nature of a Man of steady wisdom as one who is contented within the Self and by the Self. Until this realisation has not dawned, an individual considers himself to be a limited being and imposes the sense of fulfillment on worldly experiences. There is no sense of lack within and such a person is happy in all kinds of situations. his contentment does not depend on conducive situations, on name, fame, wealth etc. For him satisfaction is not inspite of something but inspite of everything. Infact such a person is not only a source of joy for himself but he also spreads this happiness wherever he goes. Chidananda: He revels in his state of pure consciousness and pure bliss. He is aware of the fact that he is the source of light that gives existence to everythig and who is not dependant on any other source of light. He is the witness to all his roles and therefore can play anykind of a role and yet be untouched by the plurality of all the roles. He enlightens all the play by his mere presence. He is Blissful by nature. Unlike the false notion that an ignorant man lives with, that joy is in the objective world, he is able to see his own self as a source of all bliss.
Greetings to all our readers on the colourful occassion of HOLI Holi is not only about colors and sweets. It reminds of the divine and eternal love of Krishna and Radha. It also reminds one of the devotion of Prahlad, of the compassionate incarnation of God as Narashima, Hiranyakashyapa and thus the fact that ‘Truth and Humanity are invincible forces in the Universe’. Happy Holi!
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True Love It was a busy morning, about 8:30, when an elderly gentleman in his 80’s arrived to have stitches removed from his thumb. He said he was in a hurry as he had an appointment at 9:00 am. I took his vital signs and had him take a seat, knowing it would be over an hour before someone would too able to see him. I saw him looking at his watch and decided, since I was not busy with another patient, I would evaluate his wound. On exam, it was well healed, so I talked to one of the doctors, got the needed supplies to remove his sutures and redress his wound. While taking care of his wound, I asked him if he had another doctor’s appointment this morning, as he was in such a hurry. The gentleman told me no, that he needed to go to the nursing home to eat breakfast with his wife. I inquired as to her health. He told me that she had been there for a while and that she was a victim of Alzheimer’s disease. As we talked, I asked if she would be upset if he was a bit late. He replied that she no longer knew who he was, that she had not recognized him in five years now. I was surprised, and asked him, and you still go every morning, even though she doesn’t know who you are?’ He smiled as he patted my hand and said, ‘She doesn’t know me, but I still know who she is.’ I had to hold back tears as he left, I had goose bumps on my arm, and thought, That is the kind of love I want in my life.
Vedanta Sandesh - Mar 2012
Letter of the Month
Is Time an obstacle for ending Thoughts Hari om !
Knowledge is all about being aware of the truth of what Any Yoga endeavor is, while and which aims at Bhakti aim to change the mind for ending the thoughts the better, so will just keep you in technically they fall a never ending 'ad in the category of infinitum loop', karma, working to because the very change something. For knowledge even motivation of a sankalpa to ending the thoughts change anything is is some other an impediment, thought, so our the because then thoughts still priorities change from knowing what continue to exist. is to workingGuruji for - Poojya what should be. - Poojya Guruji
While too much botheration with time, in terms of obsession with regrets of past, anxieties of present or dreams for future does turn our energy & focus in the wrong direction and thus increases the darkness within, but just being in the state when time has as though stopped is not synonymous with awakening. In states like deep sleep / laya / drugged state / moments of quietitude etc. also we are in the realm of timelessness, yet we come out and continue with our endless seekings with all its associated problems. One needs to understand thoughts per se, and also go into the very cause of thoughts and all its fragmentary consequences. That which sustains the thoughts are some other subtler thoughts alone, which in turn are borne out of the ignorance of the truth of thoughts and of ourselves. If I may ask, why do you want to end a thought? Any endeavor which aims at ending the thoughts will just keep you in a never ending 'ad infinitum loop', because the very motivation of ending the thoughts is some other thought, so the thoughts still continue to exist. Thoughts by themself have no independent existence, they are just our awareness of things which matter to us; we create thoughts because of some of our such conditionings. You are the very Brahma, Vishnu & Mahesh of your thoughts. It is this ignorance of the truth of thought which is responsible to give us the notion of independent existence and the subsequent importance to thoughts. Pl go into that. Realize your glory & truth and also the baselessness of the conclusions which bring about such a fragmented state of mind. Then there wont be any thoughts for you to handle. Think. It is right knowledge of what is, which liberates us, rather than any conditioned, action-oriented, endeavor. Upanishads too say â€˜Gyanat eva tu kaivalyamâ€™, Knowledge alone liberates, not action. Love & om, Swami Atmananda Page # 7
Freedom from No Cause For Grief Likes & Dislikes VedantaSandesh Sandesh- -Mar April2012 2009 Vedanta
All of us live in a confined world of personal likes & dislikes. Anything which gives us pleasure is what we call as ‘Likes’ and an anything that gives us unhappiness comes into our category of dislikes. A mind with a set pattern of likes and dislikes is a conditioned mind. A conditioned mind does not see the world, its people, objects and experiences as they are, but rather sees everything as per one’s conditioning of their present and past impressions. One may have a liking for a rose and dislike for a sunflower. Although a sunflower has not committed any sin. Infact both the flowers are unique in their own ways, yet as per my mind set a rose becomes very good and a sunflower not so good. Once a conditioned mind, it reflects in all aspects of a person; in his relatioships, in his food habits, in his experiences, in his work etc. Everything in the world is colored by a definite pattern of likes and dislikes. It is like wearing a particular colored sunglass. Wearing brown sunglasses the whole world appears to be brown. A conditioned person lives not in a universal world where everything has its own beauty and can be appreciated for its unique goodness, but he lives in an individualistic world of personal whims and fancies. Likes & Dislikes make you a Puppet: All persuits of this entity are govered by ‘I like this & I dont like this.’ We seem to live with the notion that we are modern liberated people but unfortunately we are tied up with more subtle chains than just any physical, social, political or economical bondages. We are like puppets in the strings of ‘Likes & Dislikes’. A person can be made uncomfortable by merely a change of pillow or some vegetable. One can end up starving simply because he doesn’t like brinjals. What an irony it is to then say that we are free people. We are actually pupets in the hands of likes and dislikes. A Conditioned person’s happiness is fluctuative: The desire to be happy is the driving force to acquire anything in the world. But if this is governed by our fancies of good and bad, then our happiness too is a see-saw ride. Come things of my choice I get elated with happiness and come any situation against my preferances then my happiness too comes down. A conditioned person’s happiness is therefore uncertain because it depends on the success of one’s persuits; and further more the happiness of such a person becomes even more uncertain because the preferances of the same person are also not constant and keep on changing in various conditions. Today I may like ice cream but another day I may not like it if my mood is not good or even if I dislike the person offering me an ice cream. An object of love today can become an object of hate tomorrow, an object of hate today can become an object of love tomorrow, or an object of indifference can become an object of
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preferance in the tomorrow. In such a case it will be perfectly right to say that if such a person feels cheated in the world it is not because the objects, people, or situations are good and bad but the truth is that we have closed our doors to discovering eternal happiness. Even God cannot make such a person happy when someone lives in a shell of Likes & Dislikes. An open minded person enjoys every moment: On the other hand a person with an open mind, an unconditioned mind sees things objectively, as it is; and is therefore able to see beauty and Godâ€™s blessing in everything. An open minded person lives in the present moment, has a positive attitude and is able to greet everything with a smile. For him there is nothing like good & bad food, good & bad people or convinient or inconvinient situations. He can enjoy the sunshine as much as he can enjoy the rain. He is a free person for whom happiness awaits at every step of life. â€˜Likes & Dislikesâ€™ An obstacle in knowledge: A person who wants to gain knowedge that brings freedom from sorrow, ignorance and mortality, likes and dislikes are his biggest obstacles. The prerequisite for this knowledge is a pure, balanced, unconditioned and non-reactive mind. One has to be highly objective in order to see the Real nature of the Self as beyond the body, mind and intellect. Any kind of conditionings takes away the freedom to see the truth as it is. even if one is able to understand it intellectually it will only be informative knowledge wherein one will fail to abide by it subjectively. Hence it is of utmost impotance to have a mind neutralized of all likes and dislikes. Tuning oneself to the Will of God neutralizes Likes & Dislikes; The only way one can neutralize the conditioning of likes & dislikes is by tuning oneself to the will of God. Believing in the existence of a Cosmic power who is the creator and sustainer of this world. One who is all knowledgabe, all powerful and all pervasive. Having love and devotion towards a Divine entity and surrendering all expectations unto him frees the mind of all sense of individuality. Our conditioned and stubborn expectations borne of ignorance alone are the cause of all sorrow and bondage. Therefore having one altar where I can give up completely my sense of inividuality liberates me from all shackles of individual conditionings. In the Gita Lord Krishna prescribes to Arjuna that even though Knowledge alone liberates and one should aim for this redeeming knowledge in life but this knowledge and liberation is not possible untill one purifies the mind of all conditionings. For this Bhagvan Krishna gives one of the most perfect medicine of Karmayoga to Arjuna and all who are aspiring for the same. Tuning oneself to the will of God and selflessly serving him in all forms frees the mind of all impurities. make your field of action the pure yagna wherein all impurities are sacrificed to gain the nectar of immortality and eternal bliss. One cannot own up to the teachings of the Upanishads that one is limitless and bliss absolute until likes and dislikes are not neutralised. Page # 9
Power Of Optimism Like the shining stars and glimmering moonlight turning devilish night into a beautiful sight optimism inside us can reignite ashes of hope spreading its flares far and bright it's like a boat stuck in the sea believing one day it will be on it's spree with optimism we can overcome any difficulty merrily because i know during my fall god is there to carry me those twittering birds flying around no shelter and food still they never frown optimism teaches us that happiness is not a crown but having the ability to look beyond our imperfections will never keep us down like the constant flow of a stream overcoming the hurdles in it's realm optimistic mind can aid us to redeem by reminding us "Dare To Dream" kudos to the man who discovered optimism it has rescued many from cataclysm now i believe i can be the reason to bring someone a happy season!
Vedanta Sandesh - Mar 2012
Stories by Sages
on p u e c n ... O e m i t a
Yayati Emperor Yayati was one of the ancestors of the Pandavas. He had never known defeat'. He followed the dictates of the sastras, adored the gods and venerated his ancestors with intense devotion. He became famous as a ruler devoted to the welfare of his subjects. But as has already bee n told, he became prematurely old by the curse of Sukra- charya for having wronged his wife Devayani. Yayati, who found himself suddenly an old man, was still haunted by the desire for sensual enjoyment. He had five beautiful sons, all virtuous and accomplished. 'Yayati called them and appealed piteously to their affection: "Thecurse of your grandfatherSukracharya has made me unexpectedly and pre- maturely old. I have not had my fill of the joys of life; for, not knowing what was in store for me ' I lived a life of restraint, denying myself even lawful pleasures. One of you ought to bear the burden of my old age and give his youth in return. He who agrees to this and bestows his youth on me will be the ruler of my kingdom. I desire to enjoy life in the full vigour of youth." But to his utter grief the first four sons refused. The king was angry and disappointed that his four sons had declined to do as he wished, but he hoped for better and approached his fifth son,Puru. Puru, the youngest son, moved by filial love, said: "Father, I gladly give you my youth and relieve you of the sorrows of old age and cares of State. Be happy." Hearing these words Yayati embraced him.As soon as he touched his son, Yayati became a youth. Puru, who accepted the old age of his father, ruled the kingdom and acquired great renown.Yayati enjoyed life for long,and not satisfied, went later to the garden of Kubera and spent many years with an apsara maiden. After long years spent in vain efforts to quench desire by indulgence, the truth dawned on him. Returning to Puru, he said: "Dear son, sensual desire is never quenched by indulgence any more than fire is by pouring ghee in-it. I had heard and read this, but till now I had not realised it. No object of desire-corn, gold, cattle or women-nothing can ever satisfy the desire of man, We can reach peace only by a mental poise beyond likes and dislikes. Such is the state of Brahman. Take back your youth and rule the kingdom wisely and well." With these words Yayati took his old age. Puru, who re gained his youth, was made king by Yayati who retired to the forest. He spent his time there in austerities and, indue course, attained heaven.
Vedanta Sandesh - April 2009
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Febâ€™12 VM / VA Programs
Vedanta Mission / Ashram Programs
26.2:ui!Gfc!3123 Vedanta Sandesh - Mar 2012
Check out the detailed Photo Albums of the various functions on VM News Blog at : http://vmissionews.blogspot.com/
Febâ€™12 VM / VA Programs
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Obsbejzb!Ljsubo!Qsphsbn on the occasion of the Sanyas Deeksha of P.Swamini Amitanandaji and the Birthday of Swamini Poornanandaji
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Gita Gyana Yagna, Lalbag, Lucknow: A week long Gita Gyana Yagna of Poojya Guruji will be organized at Hari om Mandir, Lucknow from 13th to 20th Mar 2012. The subject matter of the discourses will be Kathopanishad 1-3 and Gita Chapter 3.
Gita Gyana Yagna, Dehradun: A week long Gita Gyana Yagna of Poojya Swamini Amitanandaji will be organized at Dehradun from 9th to 13th Apr 2012. The subject matter of the discourses will be Kathopanishad 1-3 and Sthitha Pragna Section of Gita.
Gita Gyana Yagna, Hanuman Setu Mandir, Lucknow: A week long Gita Gyana Yagna by Poojya Swamini Samatanandaji will be organized in the Satsang Hall of Hanuman Setu Mandir, Lucknow from 18th to 24th April 2012. The subject matter of the discourses will be Isavasyopanishad and Gita Chapter 12.
Gita Gyana Yagna, Mumbai: A Gita Gyana Yagna of Poojya Guruji will be organized in Mumbai from 30th April to 6th May 2012. The subject matter of the discourse series will be Kathopanishad 2-2, and Gita Chapter 6.
Sadhana Camp, Rishikesh: A Sadhana Camp will be organized at Sw Dayananda Ashram at Rishikesh from 11th to 16th June by Poojya Guruji and Poojya Swamini Amitanandaji. The subject matter of the discourses will be Drg-Dryshya Viveka and Gita Chapter 5. Campers to arrive by 10th evening and leave by 17th morning.
Guru Poornima, Indore: This year the Guru Poornima is on 3rd July. Disciples and devotees can plan their trip accordingly.
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