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Date: 9 Aug 2006Occasion: Athi Rudra Maha YajnaPlace: Prasanthi Nilayam

Athi Rudra Maha Yajna fosters the divine nature of humans
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba


The day when people were engulfed in fascination for English language,
Knowledge of one's own religion and language declined.
When knowledge of one's own religion and language declined,
The cultural outlook disappeared.
When cultural outlook disappeared, righteousness declined on the earth.
When righteousness declined and disappeared from the earth,
The exalted position of Bharat was shattered.
Oh! Bharatiyas! Open your eyes and be alert to the situation, at least now.
Oh! Men of noble qualities!
What more can I explain and exhort?

(Telugu poem)
The land of Bharat is very sacred. It is the land of sacrifice. It is a holy land. It is the land where a number of chaste women took birth.

Savitri, who brought her deceased husband back to life,
was she not a chaste woman of Bharat?
Chandramati, who by her power of truth could extinguish the wild fire,
was she not a chaste woman of Bharat?
Sita, who to establish her chastity entered the fire and came out unscathed,
was she not born in this great land of Bharat?
This great land of Bharat is surrounded by an ocean of sathwic (pure) quality.
The Bharata Jathi is resplendent with chastity and purity.
Bharat is an extremely fertile land of noble feelings.
Is it not true that this great land of Bharat is a world teacher?

(Telugu poem)
Is there another country in the entire world where a chaste woman could bring her deceased husband back to life? This land of Bharat (India) gave birth to many such chaste women. In the Ramayana, the demon King Ravana abducted Sita, the chaste wife of Rama, and kept her in confinement under a tree in Ashokavana in Lanka, guarded by the demons. He used to entreat her daily to come under his fold. But, during the 10 months of her confinement  in Lanka, Sita never raised her head and looked at his face even for a second. Such was her purity and chastity.

The land of Bharat is like a teacher to all the countries in the world. Though not all men in this country are suffused with great and noble feelings, every woman here is certainly chaste, truthful, and righteous. Even when their husbands return home, the women in Bharat would greet them only submissively. Where else would Lord Shiva incarnate, except in such a sacred land as Bharat?
God cannot be manifested merely by offering worship, performing vrathas (oaths), or by conducting rituals like yajna. Only by developing purity of heart and noble qualities can one have the vision of God. All the objects in the world are created by the omnipresent and omnipotent Lord, who is the creator, sustainer, and destroyer of the universe. Every object in this universe is a gift of God. God is immanent in every object.

It is said, Easwara sarva bhutanam (God is the indweller of all beings) and Isavasyam idam sarvam (the entire universe is permeated by God). Hence, whatever object you come across, consider it as an embodiment of Divinity. People say, this is a cloth (showing a handkerchief). It is not really so. It is a piece of cloth made by wearing together a number of threads. But that is also not a correct description. It is a manifestation of cotton. From cotton come the threads and the threads are woven together to make a cloth.
What is the nature of Divinity? Nirgunam, niranjanam, sanathana niketanam, nitya, shuddha, buddha, mukta, nirmala swarupinam (attributeless, pure, final abode, eternal, unsullied, enlightened, free, and embodiment of sacredness).

Divinity is given different names by different people, but God is beyond name and form. He is all names and forms. He is all-pervading. That is why He is described as Sarvatah panipadam tat sarvathokshi siromukham, sarvatah sruthimalloke sarvamavruthya tishthati (with hands, feet, eyes, head, mouth, and ears pervading everything, He permeates the entire universe).

You are concerned with the human body. But it is like a water bubble. The mind is a "bundle of thoughts". Hence, one should not lead one's life reposing full faith in the body and mind. No doubt, the human body is a gift of God. In fact, we are born to offer everything that has been given by God to God Himself. Lord Krishna in Bhagawad Gita declared, Mamaivamsho jivaloke jivabhuta sanathana (the eternal Atma in all beings is a part of My Being). He said, You are all My amsa (You are part of me). Hence, you are not a mere human being.

The name given to you in this objective world is the one that is given by your parents. In fact, at the time of your birth you had no name at all! Humanity is associated with Divinity, which is pure and sacred. It is only to foster such a sacred nature in human beings that God incarnates from time to time. Whenever righteousness declines, God incarnates to uphold dharma (righteousness) in keeping with His declaration:

Yada yada hi dharmasya glanir bhavati Bharata,
Abhyutthanamadharmasya tadatmanam srujamyaham

When there is a decline in dharma and rise in adharma,
I incarnate Myself for the establishment of dharma.
In today's world, righteousness has declined and truth has gone into the oblivion. The whole world is filled with injustice, indiscipline, and evil behaviour. In such a chaotic state, faith in God is the only lasting remedy. Truth is the only refuge, for truth is God. Love is God, live in love. Devoid of love, one cannot live. Hence, one has to love God to receive the gift of love from God. It is only by love that God can be attained.
As stated by the pundit who just spoke, the "Athi Rudra" consists of many Namakas and Chamakas. They sustain human life. From where did this power come? The Namaka and Chamaka are taken from the Krishna Yajur Veda. It is an all inclusive Veda, from which the other Vedas, Sastras (scriptures), Ithihasas (ancient legends) and Puranas emanated.

Unfortunately, today, the Vedas have lost their pre-eminent position due to poor patronage. People who take to a serious study of the Vedas and chant the mantras contained in them regularly have become rare. A regular study of the Vedas and practice of Vedic injunctions confer all forms of wealth on the human beings. The fundamental principles governing human life and destiny are contained in the Vedas. The Vedas are the gift of God for the welfare of the entire humanity. The Vedas make no distinction whatsoever on the basis of religion, caste, nationality, etc. The Vedic mantras can be chanted by one and all. (Swami then called two boys from abroad studying in Prasanthi Nilayam and asked them to recite Sri Suktam).
It is Swami's wish that the Vedas be spread to every country, so that every human being, irrespective of religion, caste, nationality, etc., learns Vedas and chants them. Some people from Iran and Iraq have come to Puttaparthi, the day before yesterday. The devotees from Iran are still here. We are making efforts to teach Vedas to all people. The Vedas remove all types of sorrow.

The yajna that is being performed now is different from other rituals like Puthra Kameshthi yaga or Aswamedha yaga. It is for the welfare of the entire humanity.

A few fortunate ones are learning the Vedas and propagating them. But, unfortunately, many people are making no efforts to teach the Vedas, though they have studied them. Today, all the students in the Sri Sathya Sai Educational Institutions are being taught Vedas. As a prelude to the learning of the Vedas, one has to acquire knowledge of Sanskrit, the language of Vedas.
Nowadays, people of every country are making efforts to learn Vedas, especially the Rig Veda. Along with it, they are also learning the Yajur Veda, Sama Veda, and Atharvana Veda. Vinay Kumar has been appointed as the youth leader of Karnataka State. He is entrusted with the responsibility of bringing together all the youth in Karnataka on one platform and make them learn the Vedas and spread the message of the Vedas. Similarly, youth leaders have been appointed in all the states of India like Andhra, Kerala, etc. Not only that, youth leaders have also been appointed in the Sathya Sai Seva Organisations in all the countries of the world for the propagation of the Vedas and Vedic chanting.
The Vedas are not to be neglected. The secret of the entire creation is contained in the Vedas. The Vedas establish the goal and purpose of human life. Everything concerning creation, sustenance, and dissolution of the universe is contained in the Vedas. The brahmacharya (celibacy), grihastha (householder), vanaprastha (recluse), and sanyasa (renunciant) asramas (stages of life) are rooted in the Vedas. People are able to realise the glory of the Vedas now.

Wherever you go, even in the villages, you will find the ladies also chanting the Vedic mantras. There may be difference in the body structure between the males and females; but, as far as the Vedic learning is concerned, there is hardly any difference.

The Veda is very sacred. Especially, the Athi Rudra part is a very important section. Rudram is generally understood as a synonym to Lord Easwara. In fact, it is the essence of all the Vedas, namely, Rig, Yajur, Sama, and Atharvana Vedas.

Another important feature of Rudram is the Ekatwa (Oneness) between the two parts, namely Namaka and Chamaka. The Namaka emphasises the aspect of detachment whereas Chamaka stresses the aspect of desire. But the essence of both aspects is one. What is to be discarded, and what is to be desired? The evil is to be discarded, and good is to be desired. Both are essential. Whereas Namaka lays stress on virakti (detachment), the Chamaka speaks of desires for this and that.
People generally think that giving up of family life, house, land, and other forms of wealth as thyaga (sacrifice). But that is not a sacrifice at all! This can be done easily. What is required is sacrificing the resultant desires. That is the real sacrifice.

One has to realise the purpose of human life. We are not born merely to eat, drink and make merry. The human birth is given to us to help our fellow human beings. Help Ever, Hurt Never. We should not cause harm to anybody. We should not speak harsh words. In fact, such noble qualities are inherent in us. The human body is panchabhouthika (made up of the five elements, namely, earth, water, fire, air ,and space). It consists of panchendriyas (five senses) which crave for fulfilling desires. However, there are also certain values like sathya (truth), dharma (righteousness), santhi (peace), prema (love), and ahimsa (nonviolence) hidden in the core of our personality. These have to be brought out and manifested in our daily life. This process is called "educare".

Today, the knowledge that is acquired from the study of books is termed as "education". This is not the real education that we have to acquire. Real education is "educare", by which the noble qualities that are inherent in us are manifested in our daily life. This can be done by self-effort, without someone spoon-feeding us with some externals. Thereby one can lead a sacred life. It can be attained only by God's grace and by no other means. In keeping with the saying Sarvada sarva kaleshu sarvathara Hari chinthanam, one has to constantly contemplate on God. That is the real devotion. Ornaments are many, gold is one; cows are of many colours, milk is one.
Divinity is one, by whatever name we call (Rama, Krishna, Yesu or Allah). These are all the different names ascribed to God. It is said, Ekam sath viprah bahudha vadanthi (truth is one, but the wise refer to it by various names). Hence we should never make any distinction in respect of God. If one desires to know the secret (essence) of God, one should develop an "open heart". You may contemplate on God by any name of your liking. There is nothing wrong in it. But, it is wrong to worship one name and form while reviling other names and forms ascribed to God.

Some people like the name "Narayana". They don't like "Shiva". This is wrong. "Easwara" and "Narayana" are different names by which the same God is worshipped. The one God is worshipped with many names and forms. He who realises this oneness will have peace of mind. To love one form of God and hate another form is not good. You will not be able to fulfil your desire, by doing so. Not only the youth, everyone (young and old) have to realise and follow this principle. In fact, only Divinity is protecting the world now.

The name of God is more powerful than the nuclear bombs. God's name protects the good and punishes the evil. Hence, if you continue to worship God, surely the world will be protected.
This Yajna is being conducted for the welfare of the world. There is a very important aspect of this Yajna. The Athi Rudra Maha Yajna protects and fosters the divine nature in the human beings, while rejecting and diminishing the demonic qualities. Thus, it works for the welfare of humanity. This Yajna can be undertaken by anyone interested in the welfare of humanity.
The material and other resources for conducting this Yajna have been arranged by the efforts of Vinay Kumar alone. He undertook the job lovingly and performed it almost single-handed. Several people came forward to donate rice, fruits, vegetables, and other materials, but, he did not agree to their requests.

The expenditure for conducting this Yajna involves a large amount of money. He went round all alone and arranged for the materials for conducting this Yajna. I wish that every state should have such dedicated sevadal leaders. He is doing a lot of service. I am very happy about his service. He spurned all offers of help for conducting this Yajna saying "Sai is with me; He alone will help me."

He was married ten years ago. Both he and his wife are in the service of Swami. When the proposal to conduct this Yajna was placed before Me, I asked them,"Dear ones! You propose to conduct this Athi Rudra Yajna in Prasanthi Nilayam. Do you wish to have a son?"

They replied in one voice that that was not their desire and motive for their prayer.

Then I asked what else they wished to have.

Their reply was "Swami! We want you only!"

I have not heard such a reply so far from any couple. True to his name, Vinay Kumar is doing a lot of good work, with love and humility. His father was an Income Tax Commissioner. He was a colleague of Laxminarayana. Even now, Vinay is associated with Laxminarayana. Vinay Kumar treats him as his own father. There should be many more such souls, which should be increasing.

When the leaders are good and competent, the whole world will run smoothly. Unfortunately, today, the world has come to this sad state due to lack of proper leadership. There should be good leaders in all fields --education, politics, religion, spirituality, etc. But, nowadays, you rarely find good leaders in any field. Wherever you see, every human endeavour is polluted with the craze for money. Everything is business.

However, the Sri Sathya Sai Organisations have no such problems. Everything is free in our organisations. Education from 1st standard to the PhD level is totally free. The same is the case with our hospitals. Our general hospitals and super speciality hospitals are providing medical services totally free of cost. The hospitals outside charge three to four lakhs of rupees for performing a heart operation. How can the poor people mobilise such a huge amount? It is beyond their means. The medical services including the specialist services are totally free in our hospitals. The poor people come to our hospitals for treatment, having not even a rupee in their pocket, and return to their places completely cured of their diseases. We should render all services free of cost. I wish that all our sevadal and college students should render free service. Then only they will be able to attain Swami's grace. A word of caution: you may forget anything, but never forget chanting the divine name.

Embodiments of Love!
The Athi Rudra Maha Yajna is great, most sacred and highly efficacious. The lives of the people who perform this Yajna will be sanctified. There will be eleven ritwiks performing the rituals at each Homakunda. There are eleven such Homakundas. Thus, there will be 121 ritwiks in all performing the various rituals in this Yajna. For each Homakunda, there will be one person in charge, who will look after everything concerning the rituals. Thus, all people connected with the Yajna work in unison to make the Yajna a success.

It is only by unity, anything can be achieved. From unity comes purity, and Divinity manifests from purity. Hence, all should conduct themselves as brothers and sisters. If, for any reason, you get angry on a particular occasion, consider anger as your enemy and get rid of it. Kama (desire), krodha (anger), lobha (greed), moha (delusion), mada (pride), and matsarya (jealously) are the six enemies that trouble the human being.

Embodiments of divine Self!
You are not ordinary human beings, you are Embodiments of divine Self, verily. Each individual is given a particular name for the purpose of identification. But you are all Embodiments of divine Self, not mere human beings. I wish that all of you should lead a happy, peaceful, contented, and blissful life. You will not be able to lead such a life if you are not really devoted. Hence, develop devotion, bangaru (golden ones)! You must be immersed in devotion, not deep ocean. It is only such devotion that takes you to the Divine.

Date: 10 Aug 2006 Occasion: Athi Rudra Maha Yajna Place: Prasanthi Nilayam

Association with sacred company confers mental purification and bliss
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba


Ritwiks, the Embodiments of Sacredness, Devotees and Students!
Bharat is the land of abundance. It is the sacred land that has given birth to number of great scholars, musicians, and women of chastity. It is a great misfortune that, having been born in this sacred land, people are not able to realise its ancient glory and rich cultural heritage.

The rituals performed by the head priest this morning have a profound significance and a great inner meaning. People observe the performance of the rituals, but they are not able to experience philosophy underlying the rituals.

Whatever we hear from our elders, we should try to experience them in our heart. It is said,"Manasyekam vachasyekam, karmanyekam mahatmanam; manasyanyath vachasyanyath, karmanyanyath duratmanam (Those whose thoughts, words, and deeds are in perfect harmony are noble ones; those who lack harmony of these are wicked)."

Therefore, it is necessary for all those who observe the performance of these rituals and hear the Vedic mantras being chanted therein, to experience the divine feelings in their heart. In Bharat, wherever you see, you will find excellence in the fields of music and literature.
Sravanam (listening), kirtanam (singing), Vishnusmaranam (contemplating on Vishnu), padasevanam (serving His lotus feet), vandanam (salutation), archanam (worship), dasyam (servitude), sneham (friendship), Atmanivedanam (self-surrender). These are the nine forms of devotion for attaining God, which have been propagated since ancient times.

The intense devotion and steadfast faith that are seen in Bharat are not seen anywhere else. It is only in Bharat that people are able to overcome their trials and tribulations and lead a peaceful life by contemplating on God all the time. Such sanctity and sacredness is not found anywhere else in the world. All over the world, wherever you go, you find only misery and suffering. It is the good fortune of the people of this country that they are born in this sacred land.

We do not find the performance of sacred rituals like yajnas and yagas anywhere else in the world. People think that offering oblations in fire is yajna, but true yajna is offering oneself to God, please God and to become worthy of His love. Yajna should not be performed for attaining selfish ends. It should be performed for the welfare of the entire world.
In Bharat, people have been performing yajnas and yagas since ancient times. Yajnas and yagas were performed even in Treta Yuga, but demons tried to disrupt the yajnas because they did not understand the significance of the Vedas. With the advent of Dwapara Yuga, people made an attempt to understand the truth and significance about the performance of the yajnas and yagas.

King Janaka did not attain satisfaction despite performing many yajnas and yagas. Being educated, people should understand the meaning of yajnas and yagas. In fact, it is necessary that everyone should involve himself in the performance of the yajnas and yagas. It only means that whatever actions one does should be to please God. We should have the firm conviction that whatever we do, we do only to please God.

In fact, the very purpose of human birth is to please God. Human life is not meant to be wasted on eating and drinking. The purpose of human birth is to attain liberation. Man should try to recognise his true nature.
Whomsoever you come across, you keep on enquiring, "Who are you?" and thus waste your time. But you never enquire, "Who am I?" Once you know the truth about yourself, you will know the true nature of everybody. Do not waste your time trying to know about others. The prayer goes,

Kalaya Namah,
Kala Kalaya Namah,
Kaladarpa Damanaya Namah,
Kalateetaya Namah,
Kalaswarupaya Namah,
Kalaniyamitaya Namah

Salutations to time,
to the one who is beyond time,
to the one who has conquered time,
to the one who transcends time,
to the one who is the embodiment of time, and
to the one who ordains time.
Therefore, do not waste even a single moment in our life. People today strive to attain materialistic gains and intellectual growth and to satisfy the senses, but nobody is making an effort to attain self-realisation. How long do the sensual pleasures and bodily pleasures last? They are all momentary and fleeting. Only what is heartfelt is lasting. Therefore, make efforts for satisfying your conscience. This is possible only by associating yourself with good company.

Satsangatwe Nissangatwam,
Nissangatwe Nirmohatwam,
Nirmohatwe Nischalatattwam,
Nischalatattwe Jivanmukti.
(Sanskrit Sloka)
You become bad by associating with bad company. Tell me your company, and I shall tell you what you are, so goes the saying. The type of qualities you acquire depends upon your company. Therefore, you should associate with noble and spiritual-minded people. The people gathered here form a great spiritual company. This type of company is not available anywhere else. When you associate yourself with such noble company, you get noble feelings. When water evaporates, it forms clouds. But all clouds do not bring rain. Rain depends upon the type of clouds. Today we are not getting good rains. Man's life depends upon water. Pure water ensures good health and long life.
Many diseases are caused by polluted water. Similarly pollution in the environment is the cause for many diseases. Therefore, we should keep our environment clean and pure. It is also necessary that we should consume only pure water. Then only can man become healthy and blissful. Happiness is very essential for good health.

Students! Boys and Girls!
You are all young. It is essential for you to have your environment and food clean and pure. You should always have good company. Speak good words, have healthy entertainment, and engage in good activities. Life is a game, play it. Engage yourself in the welfare of others, and lead a life in such a noble way that it leads to liberation. Anyone you talk to, always speak in a calm tone, in words of empathy and compassion. Avoid harsh words. Your harsh words will hurt the feelings of others. Speak such words that touch the heart of others. Help Ever Hurt Never.

Saha Navavathu
Saha Nau Bhunakthu
Saha Veeryam Karavavahai
Tejaswinavadeetamasthu Ma Vidvishavahai

May the Lord protect and nourish us both.
May we grow in intelligence and valour working together.
May we live in friendship without any conflict!
Develop friendship with others by speaking good words. Good company will make your heart filled with good feelings. When your thoughts are good, your actions will also be good. And when your actions are good, their result is bound to be good.

The tongue, which is the gift of God, should therefore be used to speak softly and sweetly in a sacred way. It is a noble tradition of Bharat that people here speak sacred words. When some elder person comes to your house, treat them respectfully and offer them a proper seat. Never use improper and disrespectful words while talking to elders. Your being good or bad depend mainly upon the words you use. When you speak politely, you will have respect in society and others will also speak to you politely.

Never be proud of your education. If you develop pride at this stage, you will become egotistic in life. When your words are good, your heart will also be good. When the heart is full of sweetness, all your feelings will also become sweet. Therefore, make your heart pure, soft, and sweet.

During the forthcoming days, many learned persons will address you. You will have the opportunity of listening to their sacred talk. See that these sacred words are imprinted on your heart.

Embodiments of Love!
Lead your lives with compassion, kindness, and love. Suffuse your life with love. Love is nectarine. It has unmatched sweetness. Therefore, always use polite words. Even if you come across an enemy, offer your salutations to him. Do not turn your back upon even your enemy. Be friendly with everybody. The Vedas declare that we should live and work together and achieve noble goals with unity.

Let us all move together, let us all grow together,.
Let us all stay united and grow in intelligence together.
Let us live together with friendship and harmony.
(Telugu poem)
This is the foremost teaching of the Vedas. God has given you a soft tongue. You should not speak harsh words with your tongue. The soft tongue should always speak soft and sweet words. Harsh words will make you hard-hearted. If you speak politely, you will have good results. On the other hand, harsh words will always bring bad results.

Embodiments of Love!
The chief priest has given a talk on a very good spiritual topic. You should try to understand the meaning of the subjects dwelt upon by him during this yajna.

Do not limit your education to what is taught by the teachers in the classroom. Bookish knowledge is artificial. This type of artificial education is of little worth. What is important is not artificial but "heartificial".

In the coming days, you will listen to talks by many learned speakers on valuable subjects, which will enhance your knowledge and purity. Sravanam (listening), kirtanam (singing), Vishnusmaranam (contemplating on Vishnu), Padasevanam (serving His Lotus Feet), vandanam (salutation), archanam (worship), dasyam (servitude), sneham (friendship), and Atmanivedanam (self-surrender) are the nine forms of devotion. Among them, sravanam is the first one. So, listen to good things and try to assimilate the goodness contained therein. Move away from the place where unpalatable words are spoken. Let everything bad dissolve in thin air.
Accept only all that is good. Then good only will remain with you for ever. All that is related to God is good. Only that is eternal and sacred. Absorb all that is sacred and base your life on these eternal values. God's teachings are full of sweetness. His words are nectarine. One should never ignore the teachings of God. You may even give up the body, but not the teachings of God.

The human body is made up of five elements. Nobody knows when it meets its end. It is bound to fall one day or the other. Do not give importance to the body. Life is not meant merely to sustain your body.

Associate with this type of sacred company for mental purification and attainment of bliss. It is not enough if you merely associate with the sacred company; suffuse your heart with sacred teachings of such an exalted company.

Date: 11 Aug 2006 Occasion: Athi Rudra Maha Yajna Place: Prasanthi Nilayam

Constantly contemplate on God and attain Divinity
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba


The Lord of Kailasa has manifested his Divine form
     with the crescent moon adorning his head,
     with the cool water of the Ganga flowing between the matted locks,
     with his radiant third eye in the middle of the forehead, and
     with the purple neck gleaming like the sheen of a blackberry.
He wears serpent bracelets and a snake belt;
     his entire body is smeared with vibhuti;
     his forehead is adorned with a kumkum dot;
     his ruddy lips aglow with the juice of the betel.
Diamond-studded gold earrings dangle from his ears, and
     his whole body glows with divine effulgence.
Telugu poem

Embodiments of Love!
The entire universe is permeated by Lord Dakshinamurthi. The world is the reflection, reaction, and resound of Dakshinamurthi. Dakshinamurthi is young in age. Then, now, and forever, He is youthful. However, His disciples are hoary with age. They are venerable and steeped in sacred learning. They used to spread His message in ever so many ways. It is impossible to describe the true nature of Lord Dakshinamurthi.

The stories of the Lord are amazing.
They purify the lives of the people in all the three worlds.
They are like the sickle that cuts creepers of worldly bondage.
They are like a good friend who helps you in times of need.
They are like a shelter for the sages and seers doing penance in the forest.
(Telugu poem)
How can anyone describe the glory of Dakshinamurthi? His nature defies all descriptions. He is silence personified. His silence itself teaches all wisdom to the seekers. From that silence emanate sujnana (discriminatory knowledge), vijnana (higher wisdom), and prajnana (constant integrated awareness). He is resplendent with divine wisdom. He always has a sweet smile dancing on His face. It is not possible to describe the nature of Dakshinamurthi. He is nirgunam, niranjanam, sanathana, niketanam, nitya, suddha, buddha, mukta, and nirmala swarupinam (God is attributeless, pure, final abode, eternal, unsullied, enlightened, free and embodiment of sacredness).
Any amount of description and dilation cannot fully explain His true nature. His form is effulgent and blissful. How can anyone describe such an embodiment of Love! He is the embodiment of Truth!

The creation emerges from truth and merges into truth,
Is there a place in the cosmos where truth does not exist?
Visualise this pure and unsullied truth.
(Telugu poem)
There is no place in this world that is not permeated by Truth. Truth is changeless. Any object in this world may undergo a change, but Truth will not!
The famous musician, the late M.S. Subbulakshmi, used to invoke the blessings of Lord Dakshinamurthi before she commenced her musical concert. No one can achieve even a small task without invoking the blessings of Lord Dakshinamurthi. It is only by His divine will that everything is possible. All divine forms have emerged from Dakshinamurthi. He is a youth. Yet, all divine powers are immanent in Him. Where can you find such an omnipresent, ever young Dakshinamurthi?
Sarvatah panipadam tat sarvathokshi siromukham, sarvatah sruthimalloke sarvamavruthya tishthati (with hands, feet, eyes, head, mouth, and ears pervading everything, He permeates the entire universe). Lord Dakshinamurthi is present in our eyes that see, the ears that hear, and the nose that breathes air. All the words that we speak belong to Him. In fact, He is the prime mover of all our activities during the waking, dream, and deep sleep states. Hence, we must lead our lives with constant awareness about the nature of Lord Dakshinamurthi.
Divinity is all-pervading. There is no place in this universe that is not permeated by God. There is no object in this world that is not divine. Every object, every individual, nay, even the insects and bacteria are embodiments of Lord Dakshinamurthi. It is the one divine principle that manifests itself in different forms.

Jewels are many, but gold is one.
Cows are many, but milk is one.
Beings are many, but breath is one.
Forms are many, but God is one.
(Telugu poem)
Everyone has to recognise this truth. You may sing the glory of God by any number of names like Rama, Krishna , Govinda, Narayana, etc. These are all names ascribed to God, by man. God, however, has no particular name or form. All names and forms are His. The Dakshinamurthi principle permeates all beings. He is Chaitanya swarupa (embodiment of consciousness). Wherever consciousness is, there is Dakshinamurthi. The Dakshinamurthi consciousness is present in all human beings.

But man is unable to realise this divine consciousness due to attachment to the physical body. The effect of the body-mind-intellect-chitha-ahamkara complex covers the Dakshinamurthi principle. Added to this, the arishadvargas (the six enemies of desire, anger, greed, delusion, pride, and jealousy) come in the way of realisation of the divine principle. These are like the dark clouds that cover the resplendent sun. We think the sun is not visible. But once the dark clouds clear after some time, the sun appears with all the effulgence. Similarly, when you are able to remove the "clouds" of ajnana (ignorance), ahamkara (ego), and the arishadvargas, you will be able to realise Dakshinamurthi as the Self-effulgent divine consciousness present in you.
Every human being should strive to divest the arishadvargas. If you chant the divine name and constantly contemplate on Divinity, it is possible to get rid of these dark clouds of the arishadvargas. In fact, the arishadvargas are not the inborn qualities of a human being. They are acquired only during the course of one's life. They are self-acquired. They come one by one and settle as thick clouds on the psyche of a human being.

For example, a single bangle worn in the hand does not make noise. When the second bangle is added, they start making noise. A human being starts his life as a single individual. Gradually, he develops illusive needs like family, etc. That is kama (desire). Due to this desire, he marries and gets a wife. Thus, they become two. In the course of time, the two multiply themselves into many, that is, children, grandchildren, etc. Thus, the size of the family goes on growing. All this human bondage is of one's own making; it is not God's gift.

Hence, one should make efforts not to entangle oneself in this bondage right from an early stage of one's life. This is the message taught by Lord Dakshinamurthi by His own example. Since He did not entangle Himself in bondage from the beginning, He always looked young and fresh.
A human being should not degenerate into an animal. One should lead the life of a human being. Then only does one deserve to call oneself a human being. Otherwise, there is the danger of degenerating to a mere animal.

It is only in the animals that the qualities of kama (desire), krodha (anger), lobha (greed), moha (delusion), mada (pride), and matsarya (jealousy) manifest in large measure. We should always live like the two-legged human beings, not like the four legged animals. Every individual has to constantly remind himself that he is a human being, not an animal. One must develop the faith that one is not merely a human being but is verily an embodiment of Divinity. The mind, intellect, chittha, senses, and ego come in the way of a human being in realising this truth.

You say, "This is my handkerchief." Hence, it follows that you are different from the handkerchief. Similarly, you say, "This tumbler is mine." It follows that the tumbler is separate from you. In the same way, you say, "This is my body." The implication in this statement is that you are not the body. When you say, "my mind", it means you are different from the mind.

Then, the question arises, "Who are you?" Since you are different from all these things, you are able to say, "My body, my mind." Is it not? The result of this enquiry establishes the truth that you are yourself and not the body, mind, intellect, chittha,, senses or ahamkara (ego). However, by association with these vestures and appendages, you develop various qualities.
A paan can be made ready by mixing three ingredients, namely betel leaves, nut powder, and chunnam (slaked lime). When it is chewed, your mouth and lips turn red. It is the lime content that is responsible for this red colour. But lime should be added in a very small quantity; otherwise, there is the danger of the mouth being affected with inflammation.

Similarly, man should set reasonable limits to his activities. Only when man confines himself to limits can he lead his life as a human being. The moment he crosses his limits, he becomes a demon. A human being should live like a human being only. There are three letters in the word "manava" (human being) "ma" means maya (illusion or ignorance); "na" means without, and "va" means conducting oneself. Thus, a "manava" (human being) is one who conducts himself without illusion. Lord Dakshinamurthi taught such a sacred jnana (wisdom). He taught that in spite of one donning the human body, one should not develop any attachment to the body.

Embodiments of Love!
The most important and innate quality in a human being is love. It is an inborn gift from the mother. Love is God, live in love. You must lead your life with love. Whomever you come across, consider them as embodiments of God. Even when you come across someone who hates you, offer your salutations to him. Then only can you be considered a real human being.

Be constantly aware of the fact that Swami is the eternal witness to everything that goes on in the world, and He is watching you. Do not associate yourself with divisive groups. It is only when you join such warring groups that differences of all sorts grow. There are several such groups in the world today.

Not one individual is to be found who is not a member of some group or the other. The only difference is the extent up to which one involves oneself in such groups. The one who constantly contemplates on God is the noblest of all human beings. Sarvada sarva kaleshu sarvatra Hari chintanam (everywhere, at all times, under all circumstances, contemplate on God). Hence, one has to spend one's time constantly in the contemplation of God. Even your body has to be engaged in God's work. Your entire life must be filled with Divinity.

It is only when one leads a divine life that one's intellect blossoms. Life will become divine only when devotion to God is developed. Humanness will be sanctified and one's life will be fulfilled. First and foremost, live like real human beings. Then only can you attain Divinity.

Sri Rama in Treta Yuga was considered as an ordinary human being in the early stages. It is only when He killed Ravana and destroyed the demonic forces that He was extolled as God by the people.

Embodiments of Love!
You cannot experience bliss as long as you are afflicted with the arishadvargas (six enemies).

God is the embodiment of bliss
Nityanandam, Parama Sukhadam, Kevalam Jnanamurtim, Dwandwateetam, Gagana Sadrisham, Tattwamasyadi Lakshyam, Ekam, Nityam, Vimalam, Achalam, Sarvadhee Sakshibhutam, Bhavateetam, Trigunarahitam (The Atma is the embodiment of eternal bliss, wisdom absolute, beyond the pair of opposites, expansive and pervasive like the sky, the goal indicated by the Mahavakya Tattwamasi, one without a second, eternal, pure, unchanging, witness to all functions of the intellect, beyond all mental conditions and the three attributes of sathwa, rajas, and thamas). To experience this, one should always try to be happy and eliminate the six inner enemies.
You have to lead your lives in a state that is beyond duality, the pair of opposites. It is only when you lead such divine lives that you can be considered real human beings. If, by chance, some evil qualities develop in you, remember God's name to get rid of such qualities. When you constantly contemplate on God, you will yourself become God.

Embodiments of Love!
You are all embodiments of Love in the true sense. You cannot live even for a second without love. You are expressing this love in many ways. Develop love. Live as embodiments of Love. Gradually attain Divinity. This is the important message I am conveying to you today. I will dilate on the subject more in the coming days.

Date: 12 Aug 2006 Occasion: Athi Rudra Maha Yajna Place: Prasanthi Nilayam

Develop Love for God and Experience Happiness in Prakriti
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba


The body is made up of five elements and
    is bound to perish sooner or later,
But the indweller has neither birth nor death.
The indweller has no attachment whatsoever and
    is the eternal witness.
Truly speaking, the indweller,
    who is in the form of the Atma,
    is verily God Himself.
(Telugu poem)
The body is like an iron safe, which encases the precious jewel of the Atma and values like sathya (truth), dharma (righteousness), santhi (peace), and prema (love). If there are no jewels inside, what is the value of the iron safe? It has value only when there are jewels in it.

Sathya is one of the most important and precious jewels. Dharma is another valuable jewel, like a diamond. Peace is essential for every human being. Even when a millionaire comes to Swami, he says, "Swami, I have everything, but I have no peace." There can be no happiness in life without peace. Only a person who imbibes the qualities of sathya, dharma, santhi, and prema can lead a life of detachment and renunciation. Who is a true renunciant? One who renounces the fruits of his desires and actions can be called a true renunciant. There lies true peace. As long as one has desires, one cannot have true peace.

Bereft of truth, righteousness, love, and peace,
    the value of all your education is zero;
Bereft of truth, righteousness, love, and peace,
    the sanctity of all your acts of charity and kindness is zero;
Bereft of truth, righteousness, love, and peace,
    the utility of all your positions or power is zero;
Bereft of truth, righteousness, love, and peace,
the result of all your good deeds is zero.
These four values are the very foundation of one's life.
(Telugu poem)
The precious jewels of sathya, dharma, santhi, and prema are there in every human being. It is the duty of every human being to safeguard these jewels. Without these values, the body is like an empty iron safe which has no value. What is truth? Truth is that which does not change over time and is eternal.

Everyone knows about truth. Yet, people try to keep away from truth. Man resorts to untruth in order to escape from difficulties.

Sathyannasti paro dharmah (There is no dharma greater than adherence to truth). What is dharma? Dharma truly is the very foundation of the mansion of life. You may build a multi-storied building, but without the foundation, it will not last long. So, dharma is the very basis of man's life. Dharma is of two types: laukik (worldly) and adhyatmic (spiritual). Worldly dharma is subject to change, but spiritual dharma is eternal. When the foundation is weak, the walls of the mansion will collapse in a short time. Dharma is therefore the true path for everyone to follow.

Prema (love) is the roof of this mansion and santhi (peace) is life. Man cannot live in a house without a roof. Unfortunately, nowadays, sathya, dharma, santhi, and prema seems to have completely disappeared. Today, even a wealthy person lacks the spirit of sacrifice. The life of such a person is like a roofless house that will be exposed to the sun and rain. Therefore, it is necessary to have a proper roof.
It is love that sustains man's life. Right from the time of birth, a child loves its mother and the mother loves the child. It is difficult to describe in words the depth of the love between a mother and child.
During the World War II, for the liberation of Rangoon from the Japanese, many people died due to bombing. A mother and her son somehow managed to reach by foot a village near Chennai, having lost all their near and dear ones. They had no shelter or food to eat. They took shelter under a tree. The mother would go begging for alms from house to house, give most of it to her son and partake of whatever little was left. When she did not get enough, she would give the entire quantity of food to her son and would herself go without food. Consequently, she became weak day by day.

One day the son, unable to see her suffering, told her, "Mother, from today, you take rest and I will fetch food for both of us." From that day, he would go begging from house to house, give most of it to his mother, and partake of whatever little was left. Sometimes, he would lie to his mother that he had already taken his food. Consequently, he too became very weak. The son had no strength to look after his mother, nor did the mother have any strength to protect her son.
One day, he stood in front of the house of an officer and begged for alms. The officer was relaxing in an easy-chair in the verandah reading a newspaper. He took pity on the boy, went inside, and brought some food on a plantain leaf. He told him to sit and eat it there itself. But the boy said that he would take it home. The officer said, "I don't think you are really hungry; otherwise why should you take it home?"

When the officer was uttering these harsh words, the boy felt giddy and fell down. The officer heard him mumble the words, "First to my mother, to my mother," in a faint voice. Saying so, he breathed his last.

When this sad news reached the mother, she was immersed in grief. Unable to bear the grief of the tragic death of her dear son, the mother also breathed her last. Both the mother and her son sacrificed their lives out of love for each other. This was the depth of love between the mother and child in those days.

Today, due to selfishness, there is a decline in love even between the mother and the child! A life without love is not worth living. Love is life. The mother should love her son and the children should love their mother. In this manner, the mutual love between a mother and her children should grow. Even a monkey carries its offspring wherever it goes. Love is a necessity. This precious jewel of love is present in the iron safe of the body. Where there is love, there is peace. Where there is peace, there is nonviolence. Contentment is peace.
Buddha renounced his kingdom, left his wife and child, and propagated the principle of nonviolence. He propagated the ideal, "Ahimsa paramo dharmah" (Ahimsa is the highest dharma).

We should develop sathya, dharma, santhi, prema, and ahimsa, which are the five life-breaths of man. One can be called a human being only if one has these five values. Man should undertake all such activities which can foster the five values in him. Yajnas (holy rituals), yagas (sacrifices), japa (soft repetition of the name), tapas (austerities), etc. are meant only to develop these values in man. One who possesses these five values is a man of merit, and his life is redeemed. One's life is a waste if he lacks even one of them. First of all, man should lead a life of truth and follow the path of dharma to achieve progress on the path of spirituality.

Embodiments of Love!
Today wherever we go, we find only craze for money. Even old people who are nearing the end of their life are crazy after money. Today, man's desires are multiplying. The age in which we live is not Kali Yuga but kalaha yuga (age of conflict). Money is the root cause of all this. We give too much importance to the body, which is like an iron safe. Instead we should give more importance to the precious jewels of human values within. Without these jewels, the iron safe has little value.

Values should be the prime concern of human life. Without values, human life does not serve any purpose. Birds and animals have love in them, but they have no desires. They are contented when their hunger is satiated. But man is not like that. He wants everything. Even if he owns five buildings, he wants ten more. Why does he require so many houses? Is one house not enough for live comfortably? But he wants many residences. He is deceived by his own limitless desires. Today man's desires are excessive. He has to reduce his desires. Less luggage more comfort make travel a pleasure.

We are doing a lot of work for others without any expectation. I don't own even a single house. Wherever I go, I stay in the houses of devotees. People should reduce their desires in the same manner. Once you control your desires, you can live in peace. But never reduce your love for God. Develop more and more love for God. When you have love for God, you will have everything.

Embodiments of Love!
Today you have listened to the talks given by the elders. Put into practice all that you have heard. Install the values of sathya, dharma, santhi, and prema in your heart permanently. If you have peace and love, you can achieve anything in life.

If you ask any of our students, you will find that none of them has any desires. All these boys are highly qualified. They have postgraduate degrees like MA, MBA, MSc, and PhD. They have no desire to go to their home. If they go out, they can earn very high salary. An MBA boy can earn a salary of one to two lakhs per month. But they do not want to go. "What can money give us? Can it give us happiness?", they ask. They want to work here. They consider work as worship and duty as God. They are highly duty-conscious. The students should have such strong faith.

Wherever you see, you will find that people who are full of desires. What do they achieve by having too many desires? Ultimately, they ruin their life. So, it is necessary for us to control our desires. With heavy luggage on your head, how far can you walk? Reduce your luggage to make the journey of your life more comfortable.

As a bachelor, how happy and carefree you are. When you get a wife, you have virtually four feet. When you want to go out, you will be worried that your wife is alone at home. After a year, you will have a son. Now you have six feet instead of four. As the number of feet increases, you will become slower. Thus, the pace of your life's journey is slowed down.

Embodiments of Love!
Treasure the love in your heart. Love all. But do not unduly burden yourself with too many responsibilities. This will add to your worries and difficulties. Our teachers know pretty well what these difficulties are. You can lead a happy life if only you reduce your burden. Then there will be less scope for difficulties and suffering.

Dakshinamurthy also gave the message of sacrifice to drive home this truth. Dakshinamurthy imparted his teachings through silence. He always had a smiling countenance. The reason was he had no worries and responsibilities. (Here Swami reminded everyone about the story of the mother and son who gave up their life out of love for each other and emphasised that we should not give up love even if we have to give up our body.)

Death is certain some day or other. We may keep the body fit for now, but we have to drop it one day. We should earn a good name even at the cost of our life. Consider earning a good name as your very life-breath. Good name will remain even if the person departs from this world. Therefore, earn a good name in society. There is no point in earning a great name, but you should have a good name.

A millionaire may be considered great, but he also eats grains and cereals in his food and not gold. As long as you are alive, you have to depend upon food to nourish your body. At the same time, reduce your body attachment. Share your love with everyone. Do not limit your love to only your family and lead a selfish life. Even a fish is better than a selfish person. A fish moves freely and happily in water and leads a comfortable life. On the other hand, man has burdened himself with too many responsibilities and attachments. Because of this heavy load, he has sunk so low.

Therefore, reduce your burden and spend more and more time in the contemplation of God. When you develop love for Paramatma (God), you can experience happiness in prakriti (nature).
Duty is God. Work is worship. Follow these twin principles in life. Do not put undue burden of responsibilities on yourself. God is there to shoulder the responsibility of everyone (loud applause). Where is the cause for worry, when God is there to take care of us? You keep on worrying because your understanding of this truth is only theoretical. You should not be like that. Once you offer everything to God, you should be free from worries. You can experience peace only when you are free from worries.

You may perform any number of yajnas and yagas and undertake any number of spiritual practices, but all these are useless if the underlying meaning is not understood. You may forget anything in this world, but never forget God. Keep your mind always focused on God. This is My message for you today (loud prolonged applause).
Bhagawan concluded His Discourse with the song, "Bhaja Govindam, Bhaja Govindam, Moodha Mathe".

Date: 13 Aug 2006 Occasion: Athi Rudra Maha Yajna Place: Prasanthi Nilayam

Cultivate humanness and be an ideal to society
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba


The day on which all the devotees gather and sing the glory of God melodiously,
The day on which the sufferings of the poor are lovingly removed and
    all people live like brothers and sisters,
The day on which groups of dasas (servants of God)
   who constantly contemplate on God are served a sumptuous feast,
The day on which noble souls visit us and
   narrate the stories of God lovingly,
Enjoy that day as the real day.
All other days are mere death anniversaries.
Do I need to say more, oh noble souls?
(Telugu poem)

Embodiments of Love!
Our All India President of the Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organisations, Srinivasan, has just now stated that Vinay, who made excellent arrangements for this yajna is a very bright and educated young man. I am very happy about it. Though Srinivasan did not specifically make a mention about youth in general, it is necessary for Me to add that the youth are also responsible for the unrest and agitation in the world today.

In spite of his education and intelligence,
A foolish man will not know his true Self, and
A mean-minded person will not give up his evil qualities.
Telugu poem
No doubt, the youth today are highly educated, having obtained graduate and postgraduate degrees. Though they are occupying high positions, instead of realising the essence of education, they are inflated with pride thinking, "we are highly educated, we have obtained high academic degrees." Due to this pride, they are forgetting the culture and traditions of their own country and religion.

The day people were engulfed in fascination for English language,
    knowledge of their own religion and language declined.
When knowledge of their own religion and language declined,
    the cultural outlook disappeared.
When cultural outlook disappeared,
    the righteousness declined on the earth.
When righteousness declined and disappeared from the earth,
    the exalted position of Bharat was shattered.
Telugu poem
Wherever you see, there is unrest and chaos in the world today. Respect for elders and their own country has become extinct. Basic humanness has been lost. This lack of respect and lawlessness has spread to every field —moral, physical, secular, and even spiritual. From a millionaire to a pauper, everyone is becoming a beggar. The pauper is begging for alms; the millionaire is also begging. Who is big and who is small in this profession of begging?

To speak the truth, the poor who do not have a square meal a day and therefore beg for alms seem to be a little magnanimous, for they even share food with fellow beggars. On the other hand, a millionaire does not throw even a coin in charity. The rich do not even come forward to extend a helping hand for sacred, noble, and charitable purposes. Yet, they pretend to give munificent donations for such purposes and get their pictures printed in the newspapers with headlines for publicity. When it comes to action, they are far away. If you actually see their activities, you find they are most despicable and worthless.

The youth must come forward with enthusiasm to remedy the situation. The youth are the right people to bring about a change for the better in the country. The physical energy, acuteness of the senses, and intellectual sharpness present in the youth are not to be found in the other section of people in the society. If they take a firm resolve, they can achieve anything. The youth should take a pledge to utilise their strength of senses, mental energy, physical energy, and intellectual and Atmic power for the benefit of society. They have to conserve the divine energy of their senses and strive for the welfare of society. They have to protect the country. Then only do they deserve to be called real human beings.
Unfortunately, today, youth are becoming weak by succumbing to trivial attractions. Even a sixteen-year-old boy who is supposed to be physically strong is seen to be lean and emaciated. It is not due to lack of food and nourishment. It is due to the misuse of his senses that he becomes weak. It is a great mistake to weaken one's senses by misusing them. When the senses become weak, man becomes weak.

Unfortunately, today the youth are misusing the vital energy of their senses. Added to this, their parents are encouraging this abuse by giving them too much money. Thus, the parents are also committing a great sin by their support. In fact, it is they who are responsible for their wards taking to wrong ways. The children, no doubt, should be given freedom, but only to the extent necessary. Excessive freedom breeds permissiveness. This permissiveness coupled with unlimited money in the hands of children will spoil them. Too much money causes many wrongs. Money has to be used properly. Don't waste money, misuse of money is evil. Don't waste food, food is God. Don't waste time; time waste is life waste. The present-day youth are wasting money, food, and time. Thus, they are getting spoiled.
How is the vision of the youth today? They do not have a steady vision even for a second. Their restless eyes are wandering all around. The vision of the present-day youth can be likened to that of a crow. Whatever they see, they develop a desire for it. That too for what? For undesirable things.

First and foremost, the youth have to control their vision. The eye teaches a big lesson to us. As is the vision, so is the creation. Hence, do not look at anyone with an evil design. Do not develop a desire for everything that you see.

I would like to be frank. Please do not take me amiss. Students will be going to the college on bicycles. When they see some girls passing by, they would stop and stare at them. It is only due to such irresponsible behaviour that several accidents are taking place nowadays. Accidents involving two-wheelers are also on the increase. They stare at everything going on in the bazaar and every lady walking on the street while riding the motorcycle especially when they pass a girls college, their eyes are glued to the college. Is this the purpose for which God has given you eyes?

Do you know the purpose for which the eyes are given to you?
Is it to look at anything and everything that you come across?
No, no; you are endowed with eyes so that
     you may attain the vision of the Lord of Kailasa.
Do you know the purpose for which the mind is given to you?
Is it to wander in the lanes and bylanes?
No, no; the mind is given to you to experience bliss
     by contemplating on the beautiful form and name of God.
Telugu song
Today, the youth, especially the young men, have poisoned vision. Their speech is evil. Their behaviour, language, and conduct — everything is bad. They gossip on the looks and character of passersby. But they have no time for discussing about Atmananda (Atmic bliss). In fact, bliss is beautiful. Nothing can match such beauty.

If you want to enjoy such Atmic bliss, you (especially the youth) should control your vision. Whenever your vision falls on undesirable objects, you must caution yourself, "Watch out! I am born as a human being, not an animal. God has given me eyes to see the wonders of His creation and not the external beauty of individuals."

If three boys gather at a place, all that they talk about are useless topics. In fact, how sacred is our tongue!

Oh tongue, the knower of taste!
You are very sacred.
Speak the truth in the most pleasing manner.
Chant the divine Names of Govinda, Madhava, and Damodara incessantly.
This is your foremost duty .
Sanskrit verse
Our tongue is a gift of God for the purpose of speaking sweet words. Hence, never speak bad words. The tongue must always be used for sacred purposes. You have to witness the beautiful form of God with our eyes. There are some young men who visit the temples. But, instead of seeing the divine form of God, they fix their gaze on the ladies visiting the temple. Is this the vision expected of a human being? Man becomes a demon by faulty vision, useless talk, behaviour, and listening to such gossip. The youth especially must be very careful today. They must exercise proper control over their senses. If such restraint is exercised, there will be no possibility of erring.

Embodiments of Love!
I am telling all this out of love for you. You may conceal all your bad intentions and put up an angelic face outside, but I cannot do so. I have to call a spade a spade. I have to speak the truth. Parents and elders have also to be careful in this aspect. Some parents exhibit too much of indulgence in their children's craving, "My darling son!" You may show your love and affection on your child, but not on bad behaviour. If the child is spoiled on account of your blind love, who gets the discredit? Only the parents!
The Vedas declare Matru Devo bhava, pitru Devo bhava, acharya Devo bhava, athiti Devo bhava (revere your mother, father, preceptor, and guest as God). The parents have given you life. They are responsible for your birth. Hence, you have to love your parents wholeheartedly under all circumstances. You have to realise the truth that first and foremost your mother is God and next your father and that they are protecting you constantly.

Of what use are your achievements in life if you forget the very embodiments of divinity (that is, father and mother), who are right in front of you? Our seva dal and youth wings shall propagate such teachings and try to arrest the degeneration in society. You may encounter any number of obstacles in this task; but you should overcome them and march forward. You may even stake your life in this task of restoring the society to right path.
The youth should not waste money or their words. Keep silence. Maintain poise under all circumstances. It is said mounath kalaham nasthi (there will be no quarrel if you maintain silence). Our Srinivasan, All India President of the Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organisations, advised the youth that they should receive proper training in technology. But what you learn today is not technology but "trick-nology". Man is getting spoiled only on account of his "tricks".
Students! Members of the youth wing! You must all be very careful. You must uphold the dignity of your family. You have to realise the intimate relationship that exists between the individual and society and conduct yourself accordingly. Prahlada, the young lad, was sent by his father Hiranyakasipu to his teachers, Chanda and Amarka, to learn various sastras (scriptures). The teachers taught him several subjects. After some time, the father called Prahlada and made him sit on his lap and enquired, "Dear son! How is your education going on? What did you learn?"
Prahlada replied,

The teachers have taught me many things.
I have understood the four objectives of life —dharma (righteousness),
     artha (wealth), kama (desire), and moksha (liberation).
I have studied many things.
In fact, I have understood the very essence of education.
Telugu poem
Hiranyakasipu then asked him, "Look! Can you explain to me one topic which you have studied?"

Prahlada replied, "Character is the most important thing for every individual. A man without character is equivalent to an animal."

Father Hiranyakasipu got very angry at his son's reply. Even the members in the royal court were dumbfounded by Prahlada's words. Hiranyakasipu called one lady and asked Prahlada, "Who is this lady?" pointing to her.

Prahlada replied, "She is my mother."

In fact, she was not his real mother. She was only a servant. Then Hiranyakasipu called all the ladies and made them to stand in front of him and asked Prahlada, "Who are these ladies?"

Prahlada gave a beautiful reply saying, "All those who are younger to me are my younger sisters and elder to me are elder sisters."

 The father was aghast at his reply. He was very angry with his son's replies. He called the teachers and chided them, "Is this the education you are imparting to the children? When they grow up, they naturally follow these principles." The father warned them, "Do not teach such things to the children." He commanded the teachers to restrain Prahlada from contemplating on Hari Nama (the divine name of Lord Vishnu).

The teachers, Chanda and Amarka, were terribly afraid. As soon as they returned to the Gurukula, they tried to dissuade Prahlada in so many ways from repeating the Lord's name. They reprimanded him orally and even gave him physical punishment. But Prahlada did not yield. He told them frankly, "Respected teachers! Is the one that dissuades the pupils from contemplating on the divine name of Hari a guru in the real sense? Like the true father who advises the child to attain Hari (God), the guru also should teach his disciple to contemplate on Hari. Instead of teaching such sacred things, you are trying to push me into worldly matters. I don't want such education."

Thereafter, he left the Gurukula and set out on his mission of singing the glory of Lord Hari. He began teaching his fellow students, "There is none higher than Hari."

Devotion to God is essential for everyone. Divinity is immanent in all beings.
It is said, "Easwara sarva bhutanam (God is the indweller of all beings)." I wish that you too, like Prahlada, encourage one and all to worship and contemplate on divinity at all times. When you undertake propagation of such ideals, you can bring about a wonderful transformation in society, quickly. Before you embark upon such a mission, make a beginning in your own house. The parents can give you only the physical body. But who sustains the Atma Tattwa? God is the only refuge. Hence, parents should set an example by instilling in the children the urge to realise divinity.

The body is made up of five elements and
Is bound to perish sooner or later,
But the indweller has neither birth nor death.
The indweller has no attachment whatsoever and is the eternal witness.
Telugu poem
However much you nourish the body, it is bound to perish sooner or later. Nobody seems to know whether it is proper for a human being to spend time merely indulging in eating, sleeping, and procreation like the animals, birds and beasts. No, not at all! Man has to sanctify every moment of his life by contemplating on God. That is what the parents have to teach their children. That is what remains with us and follows us beyond death. It is the foremost duty of the parents to teach such a sacred path to the children. The gurus (teachers) have also to teach such noble things to the students.

Today, the gurus are imparting mere textbook knowledge to the students. The children also seem to have taste for such knowledge. Hence, each one of you should visit some school and teach noble things to the students.

Born as human beings, is it proper for you to make obscene comments against womenhood? If you harass ladies with your vile words, will others keep quiet? Will they not harass your own family members? Will they spare your own wife and children? Hence, first and foremost, you have to respect others. Then only will you receive their love and respect.

At present, especially the youth have to cultivate humanness. It is exactly for this sacred purpose that we started the youth wing in Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organisations. The youth have to set an ideal to others in society. Those who roam about in the bazaar aimlessly are verily donkeys. They cannot be considered as human beings. It is not such a life that the youth have to lead. The donkeys wander in the streets, braying. You are not a donkey. You are God, truly. Hence, stay firm in your sacred humanness. Keep up your prestige. This is the foremost duty of the youth.
There are yet other youngsters who secretly read trashy books. They keep such trash between the pages of their textbooks and read them without being noticed by others. What they actually read are trash novels, but they pretend to be reading textbooks. Thus, they try to deceive even the teachers. This is unbecoming of a human being. Whenever any bad thoughts arise in your mind, that very moment, remind yourself that you are a human being and not an animal. Your behaviour should be befitting that of a human being. Then only do you have the right to call yourself a human being. It is only when you nourish and nurture the human values does your education acquires value.

Embodiments of Love!
I have great love toward you. None can measure My love or compare it to this and that. My love is uniform, without any bias or preference. My love can match only My love.

I am not concerned with what people may think about Me. Some people accuse Me also. Some people write several things about Me in the newspapers. They also publish the "nuisance" coming from abroad. In this context, I would like to ask one question. Can a person copying such a nuisance and publishing it in the newspaper be called a journalist? Not at all! A true journalist will never indulge in such slander. He will rely on the news gathered by him personally and on his personal experience. He will never give importance to some "nuisance" published by others somewhere in London or America.

Those who listen to such trash and propagate them are like dogs. Whenever a dog barks in some corner, another dog in a nearby street hears it and starts barking. Thus, those who imitate others are like dogs, not human beings.

Whatever people may think, we are wedded to Truth. We are embodiments of Truth, verily. Hence, do not give credence to untruth. If people say some nonsense about you, let them do so. The dogs bark. We are not concerned with them. Those who criticise us with an evil intention are to be treated as dogs, not human beings.

Many people come to Swami. Did we send any invitations to them? Not at all! Some people are jealous of the recognition that Swami's great humanitarian service is getting all over the world and try to slander His name. I would like to say this much to such people: Let them attract people from all walks of life in such large numbers from all over the world, if they wish. It is impossible. Not even ten people will gather around them. Why? Goodness and helping nature is not in them. That is only to be found in Divinity. Only that attracts all people.

Embodiments of Love!
We see and hear so many things in the world. But, let us not be moved by such things. You stay firm in your love for Swami. You have no reason to hide your love; continue to shower your love on one and all. Then only will your mind become pure and sacred and will your birth as a human being be sanctified. Then only do you deserve to be called human beings. Otherwise, you will degenerate yourself into demons. Do not be misguided by others' words. Whatever you listen to in this sacred Yajnasala, preserve it carefully in your mind. Install God in your heart.

Embodiments of Love!
You may feel that Swami is using harsh words.Do not feel upset about it. On the other hand, you must feel happy that Swami is speaking the truth. Divinity is invincible. It is not something to be advertised.

You may go through any newspaper. It is full of advertisements. Most of the advertisements contain false statements. The extent to which their sense of discrimination has degenerated is beyond description. This is sheer foolishness. If they are really human beings, they would not have advertised such false things. If they are so interested, they should come and observe what is going on here and feel happy about it. It is a serious mistake to put up news items and advertisements indiscriminately, basing on hearsay. Readers should also make efforts to realise the truth.

There will be none to punish or subdue you if you are wedded to truth. Hence, uphold truth at all times. Your truth is your witness, and Swami is the eternal witness to everything that goes on in the world. Do not be fools. Become flowers that will be offered to God. Instead, you are living like fools. This is not good.
Dear students! Several things are to be told to you. I am mentioning all these things only to correct your behaviour. Love! Love! Love! Love! Cultivate love! That would be enough. However, this love should not be extended to all and sundry things in the world. It should be steadily fixed on God. Then you will become good individuals. Otherwise, of what use is your education?

Today, education is leading to agitation. If this situation is to be corrected, education must be supplemented with educare. Education can be acquired from textbooks. Educare has, however, to be manifested from the heart. Hence, one has to take up educare also. Educare involves manifesting the human values that are latent in one's own heart. Secular education can be obtained from books. The book is like a mukku (nose), whereas educare is the very breath that is inhaled through the nose. If there is no breath, it amounts to death. Similarly, humanness cannot survive without human values that are to be manifested through the process of educare.
Dear Students!

You are all embodiments of the Divine Self. You are all very good boys and girls. You are golden children, verily! However, you should not be like the 14 carat gold. You must be like the pure 24 carat gold. You should not lose your value. If you thus lead your lives like pure gold, I will extend all possible help to all of you. I will help you financially and spiritually in every endeavour you undertake.

Become good children. Get good name to your parents, to the Institution, and to Swami.

(Swami then called a student from America and another from Russia who are studying in Prasanthi Nilayam campus and asked them to recite Namakam and Sri Suktam).This boy is from America and that boy is from Russia. You see how they are chanting in one voice! These boys can recite several Vedic mantras like Namakam, Chamakam, etc. There are several others from different countries who are learning the Vedas.

However, it is only Indians who are neglecting the Vedas. Foreigners learn Sanskrit and chant the Vedas clearly and with proper intonation. In contrast, what do the Indians learn? "Ding dong bell; pussy is in the well." These are the nursery rhymes we teach to the children from the early age! This is not correct education.

We have to realise the sanctity of Indian culture and spirituality. Morality and integrity are the mother and father in Indian culture. Equanimity is the sister and courage is the brother. Unfortunately, today, people cultivate ephemeral relationships, forgetting eternal and sacred relationships. One should not develop such foolish relationships. Tell me your company, and I shall tell you what you are.

Since there is a lot of time available to us, I will explain to you in greater detail in the coming days. I will teach you what all is necessary for you. I am not afraid of anyone. I am attached to Truth. I don't mind what people may think of Me. Those who believe in Truth will not be afraid of anyone. Hence, I will reveal to you more in the coming days.

Date: 14 Aug 2006 Occasion: Athi Rudra Maha Yajna Place: Prasanthi Nilayam

Consider yourself as part of Divinity
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba


Forbearance is the real beauty in this sacred land of Bharat.
Of all the rituals, adherence to truth is the greatest penance.
The nectarous feeling in this country is the feeling of love
    toward one's mother.
Character is valued far higher than the very life itself.
People have forgotten the basic principles of this great culture and
    are imitating Western culture. Alas!
The Bharatiyas are not aware of the greatness of their cultural heritage
just as a mighty elephant is not aware of its own strength.
(Telugu poem)

Embodiments of Love!
Bharatiyas (Indians) are very rich people. Bharat is a rich country. It is a great land of punya (merit), thyaga (sacrifice), and karma (action). Unfortunately, today, the people of Bharat do not realise the greatness of their country. Just as the elephant does not realise its innate strength, Bharatiyas do not recognise their inner strength. An elephant can knock down a man and throw him three yards away with swish of its tail. However, a mahout with his goad is able to keep the elephant in complete control. Since the elephant is unable to realise its own strength, it submits to the commands of the mahout. Similarly, Bharatiyas today mislead by their vesture of the body are unable to realise their innate strength.

The body is made up of five elements and
    is bound to perish sooner or later,
But the indweller has neither birth nor death.
The indweller has no attachment whatsoever and
    is the eternal witness.
(Telugu poem)
There is tremendous divine power in the physical body of a human being. The power of Truth that is present in this physical body can bind the indescribable and incomprehensible Divinity. None can assess this power of Truth. It is Sathyasya Sathyam (Truth of truths), which no one can visualise by the mind. It can only be experienced, not described. Truth is God, verily. That is why it is said Sathyam jnanam anantham Brahma (Brahman is the embodiment of truth, wisdom and eternity).

Creation emerges from truth and merges into truth,
Is there a place in the cosmos where truth does not exist?
Visualise this pure and unsullied truth.
(Telugu poem)
Wherever you look in this universe, only Truth manifests. That there is something called mithya (illusion) is itself an illusion! However, man relies on the unreal body and considers it as real. First and foremost, man has to realise this Truth. He has to pray to Truth. He has to uphold Truth. It is said, Sathyannasti paro dharma (There is no dharma greater than adherence to truth) . Devoid of Truth, there is no dharma at all! It is only on the foundation of Truth that the mansion of dharma rests.

Embodiments of Love!
You have to make efforts to realise this Truth. Unable to control our senses, unable to give up body attachment, we are neglecting the Eternal Truth. This is the effect of our so-called secular education. What is the nature of Truth? It is nirgunam, niranjanam, sanathanam, niketanam, nitya, shuddha, buddha, mukta, and nirmala swarupinam (God is attributeless, pure, final abode, eternal, unsullied, enlightened, free, and embodiment of sacredness)
Forgetting such an indwelling Truth, we are following the senses of action, senses of perceptio,n and the mind, which are unreal. Do you know the nature of mind? It runs after worldly objects, indiscriminately. It is like a fly. One moment, it rests on a fragrant flower. The next moment it sits on the garbage being carried in a cart. How can you trust such a fickle mind? "Mind is like a mad monkey, body is like a water bubble."

Unfortunately, today, we are leading our lives reposing our faith in such a body and mind. The day you give up attachment to the body, forget the senses and contemplate on the Atma Tattwa (Atmic Principle), you will yourself become an embodiment of the Divine Self. You are not merely a human being; you are God, verily!

Though you are God yourself, you are unfortunately deluded to consider yourself a human being. You have donned the garb of a human being for being in this world. This human form is a garb. As long as you are in this world, you will wear that garb. The moment you return to the dressing room, you will leave that dress. You are enacting a role, wearing this dress. Once you leave this dress, you are your normal self again.
Humanness is sacred and divine. But man today is wasting such a sacred and divine nature by consigning to earth such a sacred and divine humanness. This is utter folly. Instead, one has to sanctify one's humanness. Your education, your intelligence, your physical strength and power —all these are short-lived. You have to strive to realise the eternal Atma Tattwa instead. You are not the body.

Suppose somebody comes and enquires, "Who are you?" You reply, "I am so and so." Thus, you introduce yourself. Taking into account your physical body, your occupation, the place where you live, etc., you say, "I am Ramadas." This is a name given to you by your parents. Whenever someone asks, "Who is Ramadas?", you reply "I". The name "Ramadas" pertains to your body. "I" is your real name. That "I" is real and eternal.
Who is Ramadas? He is the servant of Rama, the son of King Dasaratha. The name Dasaratha in this context does not pertain to the King of Ayodhya. Ayodhya means the place where no armed foe can enter. The human body with the ten senses (five senses of action and five senses of perception) represents Dasaratha.

King Dasaratha had three wives: Kausalya, Sumitra, and Kaikeyi. These three queens represent the three gunas: sathwa (pure, calm, serene), rajas (passion, activity, restlessness), and thamas  (dullness, ignorance, inertia). Kausalya is an embodiment of sathwaguna. Kaikeyi represents rajoguna, and Sumitra, thamoguna.

One has to recognise the inner meaning of these terms in relation to one's own body/mind complex. The great sages and seers realised this Truth. They were not deluded like the present-day human beings. They realised Truth, lived for Truth and propagated Truth.
Forbearance is the natural quality of Bharatiyas. In fact, the one who is devoid of this quality is not a human being at all!

The mother has been given the first and foremost place in Indian culture. The Vedas declared "Matrudevo bhava, pitrudevo bhava (mother is God, father is God)."
You are all familiar with the Suprabhata sloka (verse) sung to Rama, "Kausalya Supraja Rama (Oh! Rama! Son of Kausalya! It is the time of dawn! Get up and perform Your morning oblations)." Even in this Suprabhata verse, Rama is referred to as the son of Kausalya. Her name comes first, since mother is verily the God for a human being.

When Rama prostrated at the feet of his mother Kausalya before accompanying sage Viswamitra to the forest to protect the yajna to be performed by him, she blessed Him, "Son! May the supreme Lord who protected Prahlada, may the Dweller of Vaikuntha who took the child Dhruva into His fold, may the one extolled by the Amaras (immortal Gods), may the Lord who is the refuge for the forlorn —may all these confer victory on You!"

It is only on account of the blessings of His mother that Rama could vanquish the demons and protect the yajna performed by sage Viswamitra. Again it was the mother's words of blessing that was at the back of His success in the swayamvara (festival for the choice of a bridegroom) in King Janaka's court, where He broke the divine bow of Lord Siva.

King Janaka, who was a karma yogi (one who performs all actions as offerings to the divine, with no attachment or desire for the fruit thereof) and a maha jnani (a realised soul) himself, held Rama's feet in full view of the court and said, "Son! There is none greater than You. This is Sita, my daughter. I wish to give her in marriage to you. Please accept her."

But, Rama politely declined his request, saying that he could not do so without the permission of His parents. In contrast, today's youth make a big show of a marriage proposal. They arrange to print expensive invitation cards with costly designs and colours and distribute to all. That was not the way of Rama. He thought, "We are four brothers born at the same time. Hence, whether it is upanayana (thread ceremony) or vivaha (marriage), it should be for all of us together." Till then, Rama did not even look at Sita.

 Today's youth are different. The moment an engagement function between a boy and a girl is over, they go to a cinema together. This is not good. Sita did not come out into the open till the muhurtham (auspicious moment) when the marriage was near. Rama also did not look at her till that time. It is only after His parents came to Mithila and Viswamitra informed them of King Janaka's proposal to give his daughter Sita in marriage to Him that Rama consented to marry her. Even then, He did not look at Sita till the marriage ceremony was over.
The couples were to exchange garlands as part of the wedding ceremony. Rama, Lakshmana, Bharata, and Satrughna were standing in a line, ready to garland their brides. Rama was the eldest among the brothers. Hence, His bride Sita was to garland Him first. Later, the other brides were to put garlands around their respective bridegrooms.

Sita stood in front of Rama holding a garland. But, Rama did not look at her, since the marriage ceremony was not yet complete. Till then, she was a stranger to Him. It is a great sin to look at a "Parasthree", a woman who has not yet become His wife —that was Rama's view and ideal.

Poor Sita! She waited for long. But, Rama did not bow His head to enable Sita to garland Him. Lakshmana then thought of a plan by which Sita could garland Rama. Suddenly, he fell at the feet of Rama and Rama bent down to lift him up. Exactly at that moment, Sita put the garland round the neck of Rama!

Look! How sacred and noble were the intentions of people of those times! How pure and truthful were their hearts! Thus, people gave a lot of importance to character during the Treta Yuga and Dwapara Yuga. That is why those yugas (eras; there is a cycle of 4 of them) became very famous. You should also respect and worship elders like Rama. You must obey the commands of the elders. It is only when you pay heed to their words and follow them diligently that you will be able to experience peace in life.
In accordance with the promise given by King Dasaratha to his wife Kaikeyi, Rama had to spend fourteen years in exile in the forest. Though Kaikeyi was a great queen, she listened to the words of her servant, Manthara, and sent Rama to the forest due to her promptings. There is a lesson to be learnt in this context: we should give weight to the words of the master and not of the servant. Since Kaikeyi succumbed to the advice of her servant, she underwent great suffering and sorrow.

During the journey to the forest, Sita also followed Rama. She firmly informed her decision to Rama, "Oh! Lord! The husband is God to a wife. Wherever he is, she should also be there."

Lakshmana also accompanied Rama to the forest, saying, "Dear elder brother! I cannot live for a moment without you."
Lakshmana and Satrughna were born to Sumitra. True to her name, Sumitra was a woman of noble qualities. She dedicated both her sons to Rama's seva (service). As per her wish, Lakshmana was serving Rama and Satrughna was serving Bharata. Lakshmana's qualities were highly noble.

Sita, Rama, and Lakshmana encountered several difficulties during their exile in the forest. All this is a well known.

Once. while Rama and Lakshmana were walking in the forest, suddenly Lakshmana told Rama in a dejected mood, "Dear elder brother! Why this exile in the forest for us! It is very difficult for us to protect Sita from the demons in this forest. Why should we undergo so many ordeals here? Why should Mother Sita, who was never exposed to the sun and rain so far, encounter so many difficulties in this forest? Come! Let us go back to Ayodhya and lead a comfortable life."

Rama then realised that, what Lakshmana was talking was due to the effect of sthala (place). He took the hand of Lakshmana into His smilingly and brought him out of that place by walking some distance. Then He asked Lakshmana, "Lakshmana! Now you tell Me. Shall we go back to Ayodhya?"

Lakshmana then realised his mistake and felt sorry. He pleaded with Rama, "Dear brother! We need not go back to Ayodhya now. We have to live here in the forest for fourteen years as per the command of our father. I never went against Your wishes nor disobeyed Your command. I do not know why I spoke like that then. I am just not able to understand why my mind had changed like that."

Rama explained, "Lakshmana! I know this is not your nature. This is the effect of the place through which we passed just now. Several demons are moving about in this place. Since you entered a place inhabited by the demons, the demonic qualities entered into you." So saying, Rama helped him regain his poise.

Hence, we have to take into consideration the time and place as also the sthala prabhava (effect of the place) and conduct ourselves accordingly.
No text had ever taught so much about good character, as the Ramayana did. Unfortunately, today, several people are not in a position to realise the greatness of the Ramayana. Ramayana. is verily the heart of Bharatiyas (Indians). Not to realise this truth and act accordingly is the reason for all the difficulties faced by Bharatiyas today. Wherever you reside, you cannot escape from difficulties and suffering. Nevertheless, one has to boldly face them reposing one's faith in God.

God is your sole refuge wherever you may be,
n a forest, in the sky, in a city or a village,
on the top of a mountain or in the middle of deep sea.
(Telugu poem)
Only those who are able to realise the nature of Divinity can understand this truth. Today, all the youth have to cultivate good qualities. You are all the children of God! Lord Krishna declared in the Bhagavad Gita, Mamaivamsho Jivaloke Jivabhuta Sanathana (the eternal Atma in all beings is a part of My Being).
Hence, we have to emulate the qualities of God and lead our lives accordingly. It is only when you consider yourself as the amsa (part) of Divinity that you will become good citizens. On the other hand, if you take pride on yourself as I am the son of so and so, I am the brother of so and so, and I am the brother-in-law of so and so, etc., you will remain as such. You have to realise the truth that you are the amsa of God, verily. Then only will you be able to understand Atma Tattwa (Atmic Principle).

Embodiments of Love!
You are all good children! You are all golden children! But the environment in which you live is spoiling you to a certain extent. There is also the factor of the food you eat. If the friends with whom you associate yourself are good, they will speak good words with you. Otherwise, they will talk bad things and create bad thoughts in your mind. "Tell me your company, and I shall tell you what you are." Hence, you should associate yourself with good friends.

Satsangatwe nissangatwam,
Nissangatwe nirmohatwam,
Nirmohatwe nischalatattwam,
Nischalatattwe jivanmukti.
(Sanskrit sloka)

Good company leads to detachment;
Detachment makes one free from delusion;
Freedom from delusion leads to steadiness of mind;
Steadiness of mind confers liberation.
You should not make your life a "nuisance", listening to the "nuisance" words of others. Join good company and get a good name. "Be good, do good, see good." Then only will you be able to realise Divinity.

Embodiments of Love!
You must lead your lives taking Rama's life as your ideal. Whenever someone questions you, "Where is God?", your spontaneous reply should be, "God is immanent in me as the divine Atma." You are verily that divine Atma. There is none other than Atma.

That Atma is also referred to as consciousness. You should follow your antharatma (conscience). Keep yourself away from bad thoughts. Don't worry when you get such bad thoughts. They just come and go. You should not give importance to them. It is natural that when you are functioning in this objective world with your senses, bad thoughts trouble you.

There are six enemies to a human being in the form of kama (desire), krodha (anger), lobha (greed), moha (delusion), mada (pride), and matsarya (jealousy). These six enemies will lead you into bad ways.

On the other hand, the five human values of sathya (truth), dharma (righteousness), santhi (peace), prema (love), and ahimsa (Non-violence) are your good friends.Develop friendship with them. If you make friendship with good people, you will be called "good boys"; otherwise, you are "bad boys". You should not get a bad name for yourself.

You should get good name for yourself and your parents. Your parents must be having high hopes for you. Hence, make them happy. The Veda exhorts you, Matru Devo bhava, pitru Devo bhava, acharya Devo bhava, atithi Devo bhava (revere your mother, father, preceptor, and guest as God).
Obey the commands of your parents. Then only you will become sacred and your life will be sanctified.

Date: 15 Aug 2006 Occasion: Athi Rudra Maha Yajna Place: Prasanthi Nilayam

No one can escape the consequences of their actions
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba


Karma is responsible for the birth, existence, and death of man.
It holds sway over all stages of his life
    as the very deity of human existence.
It is responsible for the joy and sorrow of man.
(Telugu poem)
What is karma? It is the action that we perform. Karma is the cause of man's birth, his life on earth, and his ultimate death. The very existence of man depends upon karma. There can be no human life without karma? Spiritual practices like yajnas and yagas are also forms of karma. The welfare and well-being of the world depends upon these spiritual practices. The very basis of the world is karma. Therefore, everyone must necessarily perform karma.

You should strive to attain God realisation by doing your duty. As the action, so is the result. No one can escape from the consequences of his actions. Karma does not mean merely the actions that we perform with the limbs of our body; even the process of breathing constitutes karma. Eating, drinking, walking, sitting —all are various types of action that man performs. So, it is not possible to know the consequences of our actions. We should enquire about the nature of karma before performing. Being a human being, we should enquire whether the actions that we perform are befitting a human being or not. If you perform action without proper enquiry, you will not have the desired results.

Embodiments of Love!
Karma is verily God. God is not separate from you. God is present in subtle form in every action. God exists in the form of karma in everything right from microcosm to macrocosm. Anoraneeyan mahato maheeyan (Brahman is subtler than the subtlest and vaster than the vastest). Man must necessarily perform action and should offer all his actions to God. Sarva karma Bhagavad preetyartham (do all actions to please God). If you do like this, you will not be bound by the consequences of your actions.
Easwara sarva bhutanam (God is the indweller of all beings). He is present in all beings, be it a human being, a snake, or a scorpion. He performs actions appropriate to the vesture He takes upon Himself. Develop clear thinking and do not spoil your mind by unnecessarily thinking about something that you do not know. Man today ventures into fields about which he has very little knowledge. That is why he faces so many troubles. Therefore, men and women should undertake actions appropriate for them.

In childhood, one develops absorbing interest in play and
    enjoys the company of one's playmates.
In youth and middle age, one is engrossed in
    cultivating worldly relations and earning money.
In old age, one repents for not having this and that.
In this way, man wastes his precious human birth.
(Telugu poem)
Right from birth to death, man should lead his life befitting his human birth. Divinity is immanent in every human being. Man passes through the various stages of childhood, youth, and householder and ultimately grows old. With the advancement of age, man does not think of God and repents about what he has not got in life.

What is the use of worrying at this stage? We should have proper thinking from the very beginning. The youth leader, Vinay Kumar, prayed to Me to tell him what the youth should do. So, I told him that youth should always remain young and energetic. When youth misuse the power of senses, they lose their energy and start growing old. They should always remain young and never grow old with the advancement of age.

You should preserve our energy. Look at My body. I am 81 years old. Can anybody say that I am 81 years old? My body is free from all diseases. Sometime back, My leg was fractured when one boy fell on Me accidentally. That is why I am walking like this. I walk very freely inside My residence. But the doctor advised that I should take the support of one or two boys when I moved among the devotees. On the advice of doctors, I am taking the support of one boy while walking. Since it is My nature to satisfy everybody, I follow this advice for the satisfaction of doctors. All the same, I keep on telling the boys, "Don't hold Me, don't hold Me."

But you may not know that there is a subtle meaning behind whatever I do. Nobody can know the reality of My nature. I have never suffered any ailment whatsoever in My life, be it fever, cold, or headache. I have always been healthy. I am not only healthy, but wealthy also (loud applause).

Nothing escapes My attention. I noticed a couple of young ritwiks (priests) talking to each other during the performance of the yajna. I am hearing all that you speak. But, for Me, both good and bad are the same. I do not find anything bad in this world; everything is good. Similar is the case with right and wrong. Something may appear to be right at the present moment, but, on enquiry, it may turn out to be wrong.

Pleasure is an interval between two pains. We may eat very good and delicious items today, but how long that will remain good? The very next day, it may turn into a different matter. Difference of time determines what is good and what is bad. Therefore, we should understand everything clearly and act carefully in life.
In the Mahabharata war, Duryodhana and Dussasana and other Kaurava brothers fought with the Pandavas due to hatred for them, but they could not defeat the Pandavas because Krishna was on their side. Since the Kauravas were unable to meet the challenge of the Pandavas, they found Abhimanyu, the son of Arjuna, all alone one day and devised the Padmavyuha (an army formation in the shape of a lotus). Then they challenged Abhimanyu to enter it.

Abhimanyu was a young boy then. His father Arjuna was not there; only Dharmaraja was present at that time. He sought the permission of Dharmaraja to enter the Padmavyuha. Dharmaraja told him that it was not an easy task for him.

Then he went to his mother Subhadra and sought her permission and blessings. She tried to dissuade him saying, "Dear son, it is a difficult formation devised by Dronacharya himself. Moreover, your wife is pregnant now. We do not know whether the time is favourable to us or not. Your father, Arjuna, and uncle Krishna are also not here to give you necessary guidance and support. Hence, give up the idea of going to the battlefield."

Abhimanyu was upset on hearing the words of his mother and said to her, "Being the son of Arjuna, I have to accept the challenge of the enemy. Otherwise, my father's name would be in disrepute. Even if I lose my life, I will fight in the battlefield." He was very firm in his resolve and quite confident of coming out of the Padmavyuha successful. Then he told his mother, "I am going to attack the Kauravas like a tiger ready to pounce upon the horde of elephants. You should bless me to come out victorious in this fight by shooting the divine arrows on the enemy. Instead of blessing me, is it proper on your part to prevent me from going to the battle?"

Listening to the words of her brave son, at last she gave her consent.

May the same kind of protection cover you as that which
   Mother Gowri conferred on her son Kumara
   when he went out for battle against Tarakasura;
The blessing conferred by Kausalya on Rama when he was
   going to the forest to safeguard the Yajna of Viswamitra!
May such great and auspicious blessing and, the greatest of all,
    Sri Rama Raksha (the protection of Sri Rama) be with you and protect you!
(Telugu poem)
With these blessings, she sent him to the battlefield. He offered his salutations to his mother and entered the battlefield. He penetrated the Padmavyuha.

While his father Arjuna was narrating all about Padmavyuha to Subhadra, Abhimanyu heard the same being in his mother's womb. When Arjuna was half way through the narration, Krishna appeared on the scene and cautioned him that his son in the mother's womb was listening to all this. Krishna advised him to stop the narration forthwith. In this way, Abhimanyu could know only how to enter the Padmavyuha but did not know how to come out of it. As a result, he was trapped in the Padmavyuha by the Kauravas and killed.

The lesson to be learnt from this episode is that one should never ignore the advice of one's parents and elders. One should listen to the advice of the parents carefully, contemplate on it, assimilate it, and put it into practice. That is why the Vedas declare, Matru devo bhava, pitru devo bhava (revere your mother and father as God). Whatever be the circumstances, wherever you may be, always obey the command of the parents.
When Arjuna returned, he was full of anxiety not to find Abhimanyu, who always ran to the door to receive him whenever he returned home. When Arjuna came to know that Abhimanyu died in the battlefield, he became very sad. Krishna asked him not to lose heart, saying, "Whatever was destined to happen has happened." He also told Arjuna that the Kauravas who conspired against the Pandavas even in the past had again resorted to foul-play and killed Abhimanyu. In this moment of great anguish, Arjuna spoke to Krishna in very strong terms that He had not told him about the death of his son earlier and thus had betrayed him. As was His nature, Krishna heard all this, smiling all the time.
At the time of the death of Abhimanyu, his wife Uttara was in the family way. When the child was still in the womb of Uttara, Aswatthama attacked the child with Brahmastra. As a result, Uttara gave birth to a still-born child, and the Pandavas were grief-stricken. They blamed Krishna for all their misery because Abhimanyu was killed in the battlefield, the sons of Droupadi were slain by Aswatthama, and the son born to Uttara was a still-born child. Thus, there was none to continue the lineage.

Krishna tried to pacify them and advised them to be calm and composed. He asked Droupadi to bring the still-born child before Him. She brought the child in a plate. Krishna saw the child and said, "Look at his eyes, look at his nose, look at his face, he exactly resembles his father Abhimanyu."

When Krishna was describing the child like this, the Pandavas grew very angry. They felt that He was describing the dead child without bothering about their pitiable condition. Krishna then held the child in His hand and patted on its back and stomach. Immediately, the child started crying, to the sheer joy of the Pandavas. Krishna named the child Parikshit, because He brought the child to life after putting the Pandavas to a pariksha (test). Without test, nobody can pass the examination and go to a higher class. That is why God subjects His devotees to test. We should never consider it as a test; rather we should have a taste for such tests. All the tests given by God will be of good taste.
When Parikshit became the king of the Pandava empire, Krishna protected him in several ways. What I am narrating now has never happened anywhere else, in any country, at any time.
After Krishna left for His divine abode, a grief-stricken Arjuna returned from Dwaraka. Mother Kunti, being unaware of the happenings in Dwaraka, enquired of Arjuna about the well-being of Krishna. Arjuna wept inconsolably saying, "Mother, Krishna is no more."

The moment Arjuna told that Krishna had shed His mortal coil, Kunti collapsed and breathed her last. The Pandavas were immersed in sorrow. They thought, "Krishna was our very life-breath. He had been our source of strength and courage. What is the use of our life without Krishna?"

They decided to coronate Parikshit and go to the Himalayas. Dharmaraja instructed Arjuna to make arrangements for the cremation of the body of their mother. At the same time, he gave necessary instructions for the arrangements for the coronation of young Parikshit. Thereafter, he told Nakula and Sahadeva to make preparations for their mahaprasthana (final journey) to the Himalayas.
After the cremation of their mother and coronation of young Parikshit, the Pandavas began their march to the Himalayas, proceeding one behind the other. Dharmaraja, led the march. Bhima, Arjuna, Nakula, and Sahadeva followed him in that order. And Droupadi walked behind all.

Everyone has to face the consequences of his actions,
    whoever he may be.
No one can know what lies ahead for him in future.
But this much is sure that everybody has to reap
    the consequences of his actions.
(Telugu song)
During their mahaprasthana, Droupadi, Bhima, Arjuna, Nakula, and Sahadeva shed their mortal coils one after the other. Dharmaraja continued his march all alone.
Dharmaraja had never uttered a lie in his life. However, during the Mahabharatha war, he did say something that caused the death of Dronacharya. When an elephant by name "Aswatthama" was killed in the battlefield, Dharmaraja declared, "Aswatthama hathah kunjarah". He deliberately lowered his tone while uttering the word "kunjarah (elephant)".

Since Dronacharya could not hear the word "kunjarah", he thought his son Aswatthama was killed. He became utterly dejected and consequently gave up his life. Dharmaraja had to spend some time in the hell as a result of uttering this "lie". People may wonder, how is it that even Dharmaraja, the very embodiment of dharma, had to pay a visit to the hell. The fact remains that however great and noble one may be, one cannot escape from the consequences of one's actions.

When Dharmaraja entered the hell, Droupadi and the other four brothers were already present there. The five Pandavas were like five life-breaths. They were the embodiments of dharma. That is why their mere presence in the hell alleviated the suffering of all those who were undergoing punishment for their sins. They fell at the feet of Dharmaraja and pleaded with him to stay there for some more time.

Dharmaraja replied, "My dear ones! I am not allowed to stay here any longer. I am being sent away by the Lord of hell from here." Thereafter, the five Pandava brothers and Droupadi left for their heavenly abode.
In this manner, even the Pandavas, who were the very embodiments of righteousness and morality and who had acquired great merit, could not escape from the consequences of their karma.

Droupadi was a great pathivrata (woman of chastity). Even she had to face the consequences of her karma. Once, there was a debate as to who was the greatest karma. People expressed various opinions. It was Lord Krishna who gave the final verdict saying,

She dutifully obeyed the command of her husbands.
She would never say to any one of them that she had no time to serve him.
She was satisfied with whatever she got in life.
She was the supreme example of chastity, and
None could match her in this respect.
(Telugu poem)
In this Kali age, women find it hard to obey the commands of their husbands. Imagine the case of Droupadi. She had to obey the command of not one, but five husbands. She never complained. She always had time to serve each of them.

These days, we find women whose demands are much more than what the husbands can really afford. When the husband is drawing a salary of one hundred rupees per month, his wife demands a sari worth two hundred rupees! But Droupadi was not like that. She was always satisfied with whatever she had. That is why she earned a reputation as the greatest pathivrata.

The Pandava brothers were fully aware of her nobility and chastity. They always took her views into consideration and acted accordingly. That is why their name and fame remained firmly etched in the annals of history.
A person is respected even for small acts of nobility. However, while performing any action, there is always a possibility of mistakes creeping in. Whatever may be the mistake committed, one cannot escape from its consequences. Hence, one should always speak truth, follow righteousness, and lead a life suffused with love. This is the foremost duty of man.

One should consider the five human values of truth, righteousness, peace, compassion, and love as his pancha pranas (five life-breaths). One bereft of these five values is verily a living corpse. One should never speak untruth even in a lighter vein. Never make fun of others. It is the worst of sins to criticise others. Hence, however wicked a person may be, never criticise him.

Love all. Love is God. God is love. Love is your very life.
(As per Bhagawan's instructions, the students sang the song "Love is My form, truth is My breath, bliss is My food" Then, Bhagawan continued His discourse.)
Develop love. Wherever you may be, be it in the forest, or in the sky, be it in the city or in the village, be it on the mountain top or in the middle of deep sea, love is your sole refuge. Love even your enemy. If you happen to see him, do not turn your face away from him. Instead, greet him with love saying, "Hello brother! How are you?" Suffuse your life with love. Develop courage and conviction. Only then can manavatwa (humanness) gets transformed into Divyatwa (Divinity).

Propagate this principle of love to one and all. This is My principal message for you today.

Date: 16 Aug 2006 Occasion: Athi Rudra Maha Yajna Place: Prasanthi Nilayam

Desire peace, not wealth
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba


Embodiments of Love!
The speakers who spoke earlier told excellent things. After hearing them, I don't think there is anything further to be told.

There is no charity greater than feeding the hungry.
There are no greater gods than parents.
There is no greater dharma than compassion.
There is no greater gain than the company of the good.
There is no enemy greater than anger.
There is no wealth greater than good reputation,.
Bad reputation is death itself.
There is no ornament more beautiful than the chanting of God's Name.
(Telugu poem)

Embodiments of Love!
We are born out of and dependent upon anna (food). We cannot live for a moment without food. From where does this food come? It emanates from Lord Shankara, whose nature is infinite, who is unique, and whom neither the words can describe nor the mind can comprehend. All the objects that we see in this world are the creation of God. All that is visible —in the past, present and future— is God's creation. Mother Parvati is the only individual who realised this truth. Before she married Shankara, all the Devatas (celestial beings) approached her and questioned her,

Oh! Gowri!
You are very young and Sambashiva is old;
He rides a bull and is constantly on the move;
He is adorned with snakes;
How did you court Him?
Don't you know all this?
He has no house of His own and sleeps in the burial ground.
(Telugu poem)
They confronted Parvati with these discouraging arguments and tried to dissuade her from marrying Lord Shiva.

Parvati replied, "You are all seeing the outward appearance of Lord Shiva and are deluded to think that it is His real form. You are not able to realise His true nature which is abhouthika (beyond the physical form), aloukika (other than worldly), and saswatha (eternal). You are concerned only about the beauty of the physical body and the wealth and prosperity in the worldly sense. Your vision is limited to the body, mind, and intellect. Hence, you are able to see only the physical aspects of Lord Shiva. You are not able to visualise His subtle nature immanent in Him, namely, Divinity. He is neither the body, nor the mind. He is Lingakara (His form resembles that of a Linga). However, that Linga is not visible to anyone. It is located in His kantha (throat). I am the only one who has seen His true form. That is why I want to marry Him. You are able to see only the physical form, that too to a certain extent. But God is not limited to this form. He is Anoraneeyan mahato maheeyan (subtler than the subtlest and vaster than the vastest). When you are able to visualise that cosmic form, you will not at all think about the physical form. You will not be concerned with His age. Lord Shiva, whom I am going to marry, is not the one begging for alms; in fact, He gives alms to all!"

Exactly at that moment, Lord Shiva manifested before her. He appeared as very beautiful and young. In fact, more youthful than Gowri. Lord Shiva and Parvati are a perfect match to each other. The Devatas were dumbfounded.

Thus, people are deluded to think something, but what ultimately happens is altogether different. Not all people can realise the inner Truth.
Worldly people aspire for physical beauty and happiness. But a truthful nature is essential to recognise the embodiments of Truth. No one can describe the nature of Divinity as this and that.

Is it possible to limit the One to a temple who pervades the entire cosmos?
How can one hold a lamp to the One
     who shines with the brilliance of a billion suns?
How can one attribute a form to the One whom even
     Brahma, the Creator, cannot comprehend?
How can one give a name to the One who is present in all beings?
How can one offer food to the One who has the entire cosmos in His belly?
(Telugu poem)
God's form is the subtlest. It is verily a minute form. "That is this." (Swami created a Linga by a wave of His hand and held it out for all to see.) This (the Linga created by Bhagawan)  resembles exactly that Linga (the one being worshipped by the chief priest daily).
The general mass of people are like crows. Blinded by ignorance, they see only the external form. No one can lay down a rule that only such and such material is to be offered to God. Several English-educated and "modern" people today comment, "What is this! When several poor people are starving for food, you are throwing so much paddy and ghee into the fire and wasting it! Instead, you can feed some poor people with that material. Is it not true?"

Our chief priest can explain to such people the rationale behind this ritual thus: "Sirs! Today a farmer sows five bags of paddy in a field. When they sprout, he transplants them in the entire field and waters them. Can anyone say that he is throwing valuable paddy into mud and water? Ultimately, he reaps a harvest of fifty bags. Similarly, the rituals being performed by the ritwiks (priests) confer great benefit on humanity; they are never a waste. Whatever is offered to God today is like this paddy and ghee; they all confer great benefit to humanity at a later date. Just as a bag of paddy sown in a field multiplies itself into fifty bags, similarly all the materials that are offered to Agnihothra (the fire-god) multiply themselves several times."
There is only one thing that is to be offered to God by us. There are several desires, nestled in our heart. All these desires have to be offered to God. Whatever is offered to God with no desire for the fruit thereof will confer great benefit at a later date. Unable to realise this truth, people in general give importance to the external and worldly matters. They formulate their opinions on the basis of what they see outwardly. Whatever is offered to God, comes back to us thousandfold.
The external form is like a package. Unless this packing is removed, the material that is packed inside will not be visible to us. Divinity in nature is covered by the panchabhutas (five elements). We are unable to visualise Divinity due to kama, krodha, lobha, moha, mada, and matsarya (desire, anger, greed, infatuation, pride, and jealousy). Remove this package. Then, the beautiful and blissful form of God will manifest before you.

Do not give importance to the package. The external package may be very beautiful. However, unless you open this package you will not be able to see the object inside and its condition. Several people will be attracted by the external appearance of the package and get deceived. But, this is not the case with Divinity. The physical beauty and the senses will be visible only to the outward vision.

The body is made up of five elements and
     is bound to perish sooner or later,
But the indweller has neither birth nor death.
The indweller has no attachment whatsoever and
     is the eternal witness.
Truly speaking, the indweller,
     who is in the form of the Atma,
      is verily God Himself.
(Telugu poem)
The divine nature of that Lord of the Lords is thus packed in this physical body. Hence, do not feel contented with this external package. Divinity is immanent in you. You are God, verily! God is all-pervading. Hence, you are also all-pervading. Divinity is present in you as well as in all living beings. If you wish to have the vision of God, you must lead a pure, unwavering, and selfless life.

All the diversity that you see in this objective world is a waste! Hence, remove this diversity and develop unity. Where there is unity, there will be purity. Where there is purity, there Divinity will manifest. In fact, you are not one individual. There are three individuals in you (i) the one you think you are, (ii) the one others think you are, and (iii) the one you really are. You are an embodiment of the Divine Atma, verily. Not realising this truth, you are leading your life giving importance to the body, mind, and intellect. All these are bound to perish one day or the other. I will explain to you about this in detail, later. Sing the glory of the Divine name:
(Bhagawan then sang the song "Shiva Shiva Shiva Shiva Yanaraada" and asked the devotees to follow. Thereafter, He continued His discourse.)
The mantra "Namashivaya" contains five letters. It is a glorious and sacred mantra. It is nirgunam, niranjanam, sanathanam, niketanam, nitya, shuddha, buddha, mukta, nirmala swarupinam (God is attributeless, pure, final abode, eternal, unsullied, enlightened, free, and embodiment of sacredness). You have to preserve such a sacred mantra securely in your heart.

People generally think that Brahma is the creator, Vishnu is the sustainer, and Shiva is the destroyer. In fact, they are three rolled into One. If you wish to have a paan, you must procure three items: betel leaves, betel nut, and slaked lime (chunnam). Only when these three ingredients are chewed together does your mouth and lips will become red. From where did this red colour come? From betel leaves? From betel nuts? Or from lime? Not any one of them exclusively. Only when the three items are chewed together does the red colour appears.

Similarly, God is all the three —Brahma, Vishnu, and Maheswara— coming together. The unity of all three aspects is Divinity. Do not attribute diversity to God and spoil your mind. You will surely be able to experience the oneness of these three aspects of God.
Once, it appears that Parvati had proposed to Lord Easwara to build a house for themselves. She prayed to Him, "Oh! Lord! You go about places begging for alms. We have not been able to prepare homely food. We have no house to take shelter. How can I manage this family?"

Easwara then explained to her, "Parvati! Will it be all right if we build a house? The rats will occupy the house even before we move into it. Then, a cat has to be kept ready to kill the rats. The cat needs milk. For that purpose, we have to purchase a cow. To purchase a cow, money is required. It is all a big botheration. You think it is so easy to build a house and maintain it. No, no! We should not aspire for such things. Once you liked Me and married Me, you should leave everything to Me. You should not wish for these paraphernalia."å
All the wealth like money, gold, houses, land, property, vehicles, etc., in this world is transitory and a waste. Alexander set out on a victory march. He conquered several countries in the world and finally set his foot in Bharat. He reached the river Sind. It is near Kashmir. He tried to cross that river. Exactly at that moment he suffered from a "heart attack". The doctors examined him and declared that there were no chances of his recovering.

Then he called his ministers and other officials and told them, "I am not at all worried that I am dying. I am, in fact, happy. However, I have a small desire. After my death, please wrap my body in a white cloth, keeping my empty hands straight facing the sky, and take it in a procession through every street in my village. The people will, of course, enquire why were the hands of the king kept in such a position. Then, you explain to them that Alexander was a great conqueror. He had a big army and a number of friends and relatives. He accumulated great wealth by conquering several countries. Yet, at the time of death, he left his mortal coil with empty hands."

Even King Harischandra, who strictly followed the path of truth,
    had to leave this world ultimately,
    leaving behind his vast kingdom and riches.
Emperor Nala, who reigned over a great empire,
    could not take with him anything when he passed away.
Did King Mandhata, who adorned the Krita Yuga,
    carry any wealth with him when he left the earth?
Even Lord Rama, who built the bridge across the ocean,
    is not to be seen on the earth today.
Many kings have ruled over the earth,
But none of them could carry even a fistful of dust with them.
Oh noble ones!
Do you think you can carry the riches on your head
    when you leave the world?
(Telugu poem)
No one can take even a paisa along with him at the time of his death. Not even a handful of earth. Man considers himself to be great and rich. Recently, a person bought an acre of land in Hyderabad paying rupees 40 crores. While returning from the Registrar's office after registering the land, he suddenly collapsed. Of what use it is accumulating crores worth of wealth?

What is important to a human being is his guna (noble qualities), not dhana (money). Daivabala (the strength that comes from God) is most important for us. If you develop divine feelings, everything will be added unto you. No doubt, money is important for, we have to eat food with the money we earn. However, excess of wealth is bad. It may even lead to losing one's life sometimes. Upi must have enough money to sustain our family.

You must also help the society to a certain extent. You are living in the society. Without society, you cease to exist. Hence, show your gratitude to the society. First "self" and then "help". Humanness can survive only if these two exist. Do not be "selfish". It is said that a fish is better than selfish. You must lead a happy life doing selfless service to the society.
I am always happy and blissful. I do not know what sorrow is, what difficulty is, what pain is.

Once, the President of India visited Prasanthi Nilayam. He asked from Me during an interview, "Swami! Do you also have desires?"

I told him, "I have only one desire. I must be what I am. I should not depend on others. I must give happiness to everybody. It is only when everyone is happy, that I am happy."

What more do I need? Everyone approaches Me with a request, "Swami! I want peace." But where is peace? It is verily in our inner self. All that exists outside is only "pieces". We don't need it. Peace has to be manifested from our own inner self.

It is only when we spend our lives based on this principle that our lives will be sanctified. Whatever sadhanas (spiritual practices) we may undertake, whatever texts we may read, or whatever high academic degrees we may acquire, all that has to be left in this world when the end comes. People do not take even one of these appendages along with them in their journey to the other world.

Hence, I wish that all of you should lead a peaceful life. It is My wish that you should develop a desire for peace. Of what use it is to have wealth if you don't develop a charitable disposition?
The boy who spoke just now comes from a great family. His grandfather's name is Margabandhu. His father is a bank manager. It is three years since he joined our college, leaving the college in Delhi where he was studying earlier. Since then, he is doing a Ph.D. on the teachings of Swami. He never associates with anyone. He will always be alone. He obeys Swami's commands implicitly and performs whatever work is entrusted to him. He gives very good lectures on philosophy. He is studying Sankara's life and philosophy. Everything about Sankara's advaita (non-duality) philosophy is at his finger tips. There are several such boys in our institution. He came to Puttaparthi only for undertaking such tapas (penance). The second speaker today is also our student. All these boys are very great.
You have Vedanarayana here. His name itself is Vedanarayana. Last year, he received the best teacher award from the President of India. While presenting the award to him, the President asked him, "Where do you go, after receiving this award?"

Vedanarayana replied, "I am going back to Puttaparthi. I don't go anywhere else."

The President then advised him, "Dear Son! You are a very good boy. Please stay there itself." The President is a Muslim. Yet, he has great devotion toward Swami. Several such high dignitaries visit Puttaparthi and bless our children.
Every year, about five hundred students join our educational institutions. We do not advertise our academic achievements in newspapers. But all our students get first class only. Two boys from our Alike institution secured first ranks in the Medical and Engineering entrance test. I gave them scholarships. When they go for higher education to America, I will take up the responsibility of educating them in those institutions. I told those boys, "Not only here, you should come out in first ranks in America also."
All our children are like gold, not impure gold, but pure and unalloyed gold! They are prepared to undertake any work that is entrusted to them. These boys go to the villages every year for one month to undertake service. They take rice and other provisions along with them and cook there and serve all the villagers. They serve food to every individual in every family, irrespective of the number of members in the family.

The villagers affectionately greet these boys, "Dear children! Did our Swami send you here!" The villagers feel very happy with the service rendered by our students. On the day of visit of our boys to the village, the villagers keep their houses clean and decorate them with floral designs. They receive Swami's prasadam with great devotion and reverence and partake of it, happily. It is once again time to send our boys to the villages to distribute Swami's prasadam.

Our boys are adepts not only in education but in sports and games, dance and music as well. There is no work that our boys cannot undertake. Wherever they go, whether in the villages or towns, our boys are very careful to keep up their character. Our boys and girls treat character as their very life-breath.
There are 700 girl students in the Anantapur campus. They are also coming out in first class. They also go to the villages to do grama seva. They demolish the old and dilapidated houses and build new houses in the villages. The girls by themselves build pucca houses with stones and cement. They are doing a lot of service to the poor.

When the villagers were asked about the quality of their work (whether they were leaking), we were informed, "No Swami! Your girls did a wonderful job. Our houses are very safe. Even the engineers are happy with their work. They did it all free of cost."

Our boys are also doing great service in the villages. Thus, our students from all the three campuses of Prasanthi Nilayam, Bangalore, and Anantapur are visiting the villages and helping the villagers.
Our boys and girls did not come here merely for education. My sincere advice to any student seeking admission in our Institutions is, "Please do not come here only for education and acquiring academic degrees." You can certainly pursue your education. But the foremost requirement is seva (selfless service). For what purpose did God give you the human body? Only for serving others.

Lord Krishna declared in the Bhagawad Gita, Mamaivamsho Jivaloke Jivabhuta Sanathana (the eternal Atma in all beings is a part of My Being). All are verily the amsa (part) of the same Divinity. Hence, you should serve all. "Service is God, serve all."

Our students are earning a good name only because they put into practice such teachings of Swami. Wherever they go, people show great love and affection toward the students of Sri Sathya Sai Educational Institutions. The moment they see these boys and girls clad in white dress, they shower great praise on them saying, "These boys and girls belong to Sathya Sai, they are all very good." The dress our students wear is of white colour as also their hearts. They are pure and sacred.
You are witnessing every day how these boys are bringing Me into this Kulwant Hall and taking Me back to My residence! These two boys completed their MBA degree. The third boy is studying MBBS. Adikesavulu gave him a seat in the Vaidehi Medical College. He is admitting several such boys. If you want to have a seat in the Medical College anywhere else, huge amount of donation is to be paid. Besides, there is the monthly fee of rupees two to three thousand.

But he did not collect even a paisa from us. He (Adikesavulu) admitted several of our boys in his Institution. He is a great thyagi (man of sacrifice). He lives near the Sathya Sai Super Speciality Hospital in Bangalore. We have built three hospitals in Bangalore itself. There are instruments worth crores of rupees in each of these hospitals. If anyone is to get a heart operation done in any of the Super Speciality Hospitals outside, lakhs of rupees have to be spent. That being the position, several people are coming to our hospitals and getting heart operations done free of cost.
I have resolved to provide education, medicine, and life-sustaining drinking water to the people free of cost. We are supplying drinking water to the upland areas in the East and West Godavari districts of Andhra Pradesh by laying pipes up to the hilltop. There is adequate amount of water flowing in these two districts. But the people living in the upland villages were not getting drinking water. Even after so many years, they were suffering for want of drinking water. Hence, we have taken up a project at a cost of 80 crores to supply drinking water to these people by laying pipes. They expressed their gratitude to Swami saying, "It is years since we drank sweet drinking water. Today, we are able to drink pure and sweet water once again. We are very happy and grateful to You, Swami!

Not only that. We have also provided drinking water to all the people in Chennai city, irrespective of their social strata. The citizens of Chennai came in 50 buses to Puttaparthi to express their gratitude to Swami for this munificence. They conveyed their feelings, saying, "How do we express our gratitude to you, Swami! Words fail us."

I told them, "You need not say thanks to Me. I gave drinking water to My own people." You may not know it, since you are all here. It has been published in the newspapers the day before yesterday that water has been supplied to the Chennai city from the Poondi reservoir. It is only yesterday that water reached Chennai at the right time.
The people of Mahboobnagar and Medak districts approached Me and represented, "Swami! We have no pure water." I responded immediately and arranged for the supply of drinking water from the Krishna river to the people of these two districts.
Thus, we have taken up a number of service projects for the benefit of people living in the villages of all areas, not only in our country, but all the countries in the world. Our motto is, "Love All; Serve All!"

You should also emulate our example. This is what I teach to our children. If you come to know that someone is suffering, whether they happen to be your friend or otherwise, you must serve them. If necessary, apply for leave that day to the college and help thm. I should not praise My boys, but they are doing more than what I instructed them to do. They are helping others, even sacrificing their own self. We are producing such ideal students with a spirit of sacrifice and service. That is why they are progressing in every field in the country as well as abroad.
There are 1200 small children in the Primary School. They are still in the age group when normally they should be attached to their parents. But, once they join in our school, they forget their parents and develop to a stage where they cannot live without us. The parents come here and see for themselves the change that has taken place in their children. They are surprised and also feel happy, "Aha! What a great change has taken place in our children!" In fact, we are showing great love toward the children, more than their own parents.
Thus, I can go on speaking about our children. Don't consider them as ordinary human beings. They are very great. They deserve to be the leaders of our country when they grow up. I only wish that our children should be ideal children. Then only will I be happy.

Date: 18 Aug 2006 Occasion: Athi Rudra Maha Yagna Place: Prasanthi Nilayam

Discard dehabhranthi and develop Daivabhimana
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba


What is the use of all your learning,
    when it does not help you to change your destiny?
When bad thoughts enter your mind,
    all your education and intelligence become futile and meaningless.
(Telugu poem)
You may study a number of subjects and learn many skills. But the value of all that learning is zero if you do not develop devotion to God. Unable to realise this truth, people become proud of their learning. Of what use is all that learning? What should I say in this august assembly about the end result of all such education?

The Vedic dharmas have all declined.
Speaking one's mother tongue has become a sin.
People are diffident to observe morality in society.
Oh! Devotees! It is your duty to protect dharma in Bharat.
(Telugu poem)

Embodiments of Love!
Today, everything is moving very fast, unmindful of the fleeting time. Seconds, minutes, and hours are rolling by, within no time. Sixty seconds make one minute and sixty minutes make one hour. Thus, even hours are rolling fast within no time. What could be the reason for this fast life? It is only man's nature.

Man's mind is changing by the seconds. It is said, Manah eva manushyanam karanam bandhamokshayo (mind alone is the cause of bondage and liberation of man). What is mind? It is a bundle of desires. You have to control these desires to some extent. Man today is able to control everything, but not himself. Of what use it is to control everything, when he himself is moving about without any control?

Embodiments of Love!
First and foremost, our mind has to be dedicated to God. The mind is a gift of God. What has been given by God has to be offered to Him again. Only when you follow this principle will experience total bliss.

When one emerges from the womb of the mother,
    one does not find any garland around one's neck.
There are no jewels made of pearls,
    nor are there glittering gold ornaments.
There are no chains studded with precious stones
    like emeralds and diamonds.
But there is one garland around the neck.
Brahma strings together the consequences of one's past deeds
    into a heavy garland and puts it around the neck at the time of birth.
(Telugu poem)
Lord Krishna declared, Mamaivamsho jivaloke jivabhuta sanathana (the eternal Atma in all beings is a part of My Being). All this creation is a gift of God. We have, therefore, to preserve that gift carefully.

Embodiments of Love!
Man has three qualities: sathwa (purity, serenity), rajas (passion, excitedness), and thamas (indolence, inertia). We have to preserve the sathwic quality. A person of evil thoughts will see evil everywhere. A person of good thoughts will see good everywhere. However, a person with no thoughts at all will become a full man. That person is eternal and peaceful.

A cloth is made of threads woven into warp and woof. From where did the thread called karmaphala (the fruit of one's actions) come? It has come from the cotton of janmanthara samskaras (the vasanas or tendencies acquired from several previous births). A thread is made out of cotton and woven into a cloth. And that cloth is worn by us. The cloth called the human body that we are wearing is a gift of God.
Ubhayabharathi was the wife of Mandana Misra, a great scholar in Vedanta. She was a realised soul. She always used to obey the commands of her husband and perform the duties ordained on her, as a truthful wife.
One day, Ubhayabharathi was going along with her disciples to the river Ganga to take bath. On the way, she observed a sanyasi (renunciant), who was relaxing with a dried bottle gourd under his head. He was using this as a container for storing drinking water, so he was mindful of it. Ubhayabharathi saw this sanyasi's attachment to the bottle gourd and said to her disciples, "Look! This man calls himself a sanyasi, but he is attached to a bottle gourd that he is keeping under his head as a pillow."

The sanyasi heard this comment but did not utter anything then. While Ubhayabharathi and her disciples were returning from the river, he threw away the bottle gourd in front of them in order to demonstrate that he was not attached to it. Observing his action, Ubhayabharathi remarked, Ò"I thought there was only one defect in him, namely, abhimana (attachment). Now I realise that he has another defect also, ahamkara (ego). How can one with abhimana and ahamkara become a jnani and sanyasi?"

Her comment was an eye-opener to the sanyasi. He expressed gratitude to Ubhayabharati for imparting true knowledge of renunciation to him. Ubhayabharathi then explained to him further, "The whole world is illusory. Several objects in this world are attracting man. But they are not outside. They are all the reflection of one's inner thoughts. They are created by man himself. You develop attachment to the physical body. Later on, you yourself will discard the body. You are the one who develops attachment to the body, and you are again the one who will discard the body. Developing attachment to the body or discarding it —both are the result of your delusion. You are developing dehabhranthi (body delusion). Instead, discard dehabhranthi. and develop Daivabhimana (attachment to Divinity). The body is a temple of God. Consider the Indweller in the body as Devadeva (the supreme Lord)."

The body is made up of five elements and
    is bound to perish sooner or later,
But the indweller has neither birth nor death.
The indweller has no attachment whatsoever and
    is the eternal witness.
Truly speaking, the indweller, who is in the form
    of the Atma, is verily God Himself.
(Telugu poem)
All worldly feelings are born out of ajnana (ignorance). They are not true and permanent. As long as there is life, one loves the other. As long as there is life in him, the husband loves his wife, and vice versa. This love relates to the physical body. The two bodies did not come at the same time, nor do they leave at the same time.

Punarapi jananam punarapi maranam,
Punarapi janani jathare sayanam,
Iha samsare bahu dustare,
Kripayapare pahi Murare.

Oh Lord! I am caught up in this cycle of birth and death;
Time and again, I experience the agony of
    staying in the mother's womb.
It is very difficult to cross this ocean of worldly life.
Please take me across this ocean and grant me liberation.

Bhaja Govindam, bhaja Govindam,
Govindam bhaja moodha mathe,
Samprapthe sannihithe kale,
Nahi nahi rakshati dukrun karane.

Oh foolish man, chant the name of Govinda;
The rules of grammar will not come
    to your rescue when the end approaches.
One may be hale and healthy and happy today. But no one knows what will happen to tomorrow. The body is like a car. The mind is its steering. When the mind itself is not in his control, how can the physical body be under his control?

Embodiments of Love!
Each one of these ritwiks (priests) who have gathered here and are conducting this yajna for the last ten days is great. Irrespective of their mental make up, their minds are steadily fixed up on this divine assignment. There are several youths also in this group. The country needs such youths. I feel very happy in the midst of youths. I will give whatever they want. I will talk to them after the Purnahuthi and fulfil their desires. I will spend some time with them happily.

There are several people who tried to develop vairagya bhava (sense of detachment), but they are unable to give up their attachments. I will teach them a method by which they can easily give up this attachment. Our chief priest can guide you all in this regard. He can lead you by his own example. He is a person who puts into practice, all that he teaches to others. When you follow such an acharya (teacher), you can overcome any hurdle and reach your destination.

It is very easy for a human being to attain Divinity. In fact, God belongs to you; you belong to Him. The relationship between you and Me is that of a father and son. Hence, lead a life of happiness, courage, and bliss. I am also feeling bad that you are leaving tomorrow. I will come along with you. We cannot live without one another. You should consider this sacred relationship between us as true and eternal and strive to maintain it. I will come tomorrow early in the morning and see you all again. I will give you a lot of happiness and bliss.

Date: 19 Aug 2006 Occasion: Athi Rudra Maha Yagna Place: Prasanthi Nilayam

Yajnas and the Vedas are for the whole world
Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba


Embodiments of Love!

I am searching, searching, and searching.
I searched then. I am searching now.
I have been searching for a true and righteous human being.
Will the hunger of a hungry person be satisfied
     simply by hearing the names of the delicious dishes?
Will the poverty of those suffering from acute poverty
     be alleviated by hearing the glory of the wealth?
(Telugu poem)

Embodiments of Love!
Before you start teaching anything to others, you yourself must put it into practice. It is most essential to experience it and derive joy therefrom before you teach that concept or practice to others.

All the ritwiks (priests) who took part in the Athi Rudra Maha Yajna are very good. In fact, I could find the ritwiks are to My liking. I am very satisfied with the way they performed the Yajna, as also the sadhana (spiritual disciplines) they did. They did more than what was expected of them. It is a good fortune to have such ritwiks.

Tomorrow, this Yajna will come to a close, but not the mantras. The mantras are eternal. They is not associated with the gunas (attributes). They are nirgunam, niranjanam, sanathanam, niketanam, nitya, shuddha, buddha, mukta, and nirmala swarupinam (attributeless, pure, final abode, eternal, unsullied, enlightened, free, and embodiment of sacredness). Such mantras will always be ringing in our ears.

A ritwik is one who is always associated with the mantras. The ritwik is not separate from the mantras. Devoid of the mantras, the ritwiks have no existence at all!

Mantras like these will be chanted by only a few fortunate ones. Are there not any number of ritwiks in this world! But, only 132 ritwiks could take part in this Athi Rudra Maha Yajna.
"Oh! Vedic Brahmins, who always consider the sastras (scriptural injunctions) as true, how fortunate you are!" The Brahmins lead their lives in accordance with the sastras, reposing full confidence in them. Can you find ritwiks like these anywhere else? Truly, every mantra you chant is crystal clear and with perfect intonation. It is our good fortune to hear the ritwiks chanting the mantras in such a way. Many people are happy that this Yajna is being performed with such ritwiks. Soon similar Yajnas will be performed in Puttaparthi. That is the Veda Purusha Saptaha Jnana Yajna, which is being celebrated every year. That is a Jnana Yajna. A Jnana Yajna is one which is related to the manasika tattwa (mental principle).

You will derive a lot of benefit from your effort for the last ten days. You may not be able to realise it right now. Go back to your respective places and contemplate on it calmly. You will surely experience bliss.

There are a number of youths amongst the ritwiks. This is a welcome sign. It is our good fortune that the youth are participating in such sacred activities like this Athi Rudra Maha Yajna. I told Vinay, "My dear! We are most fortunate to have such ritwiks."

Probably you are all comfortable here; I presume that proper arrangements for your food and residence have been made and that Vinay has provided all the necessary comforts to you. I have been thinking on these lines from morning till evening these days. If you are happy, I shall be happy.

These ten days have passed like ten minutes. You must have enjoyed your stay here for the last ten days. Similarly, I am also happy that you are here. Wherever you go, you must contemplate on this divine experience. These sacred moments must be preserved in your memory. You will come again to Puttaparthi, shortly. Not only that. I have decided to perform this Yajna in Chennai in the near future. I wish that all of you come there and participate in the Yajna.

It is very important that you realise the uniqueness of this Yajna. What is Yajna? Is it physical or spiritual? This is a spiritual Yajna, not a physical or worldly Yajna. This Yajna has provided a physical, mental, and heartfelt experience, which is unique in nature. I have taken care of every minute detail in this Yajna, right from the type of dress (dhotis) you have to wear. Just as a loving father takes care of everything in respect of his child, I have taken care to provide everything needed by you. I am very sad that I shall be bidding you farewell tomorrow, on conclusion of the Yajna. I know you are also feeling sad to leave this place. Such intimate relationship between us is real devotion.

You cannot leave Me and I cannot leave you. I am always with you. Hence, do not spend anxious moments with thoughts like, "Swami is very far from us in Puttaparthi or Bangalore." I am with you, wherever you are.

Our chief priest conducted all the rituals in this Yajna with full faith and devotion. He did all this with the conviction that it is his personal work. Such people are rare in this world.
The most important point I would like to stress is that you must develop a spirit of sacrifice. Man may have several desires. All those desires have to be offered to God to please Him (daiva preetyartham). Do not confine yourself to the self. Help is better than self. Whatever activity you undertake, consider it as something done for satisfying your heart, for the uplift of your Atma. This Yajna is conducted to realise the Atma Tattwa, not with a view to achieve some physical and worldly benefit.
You have participated in this sacred Yajna for your good, for your welfare, and the welfare of humanity at large. This Yajna is not merely for a few individuals, it is for the entire world. The mantras chanted here have mixed in the air and spread to the entire universe. These sacred sounds entered our hearts and purified them. Hence, do not think that the mantras chanted in this Yajna are confined to only this place. They have spread to the entire world. This Yajna is not only for the benefit of India, but to all the countries in the world.

There may be difference in the languages spoken in different countries. But there is no difference at all in the bhava (feelings). People of many countries —America, Russia, Africa, etc.— have participated in the Yajna with a lot of enthusiasm. They are also learning the Veda mantras.

On the 26th of last month, about 80 people from Germany visited Puttaparthi in a special plane. All of them, ladies and gents, chanted the Vedas. They told Me, "Swami! It is only these mantras that are protecting our country. Hence, we chant these Veda mantras from dawn to dusk."

There is not even an iota of selfishness in chanting these mantras. These mantras are for the entire humanity. They are essential for the well-being of every human being. The Veda transcends the individual (vyashti) and concerns itself with the samashtiswarupa (the collective form). Even Westerners are now printing Vedic texts, with an intention to spread the message of the Vedas to people of all countries. No doubt, it is difficult for the Westerners to chant the Veda mantras, for, they have difficulty in pronouncing various syllables. Some of the mantras are tongue-twisting. But, with sincere effort, they are learning to chant these right. One can achieve anything, if only one has a firm resolve.

Having resolved what ought to be resolved,
    hold on to it till you have succeeded.
Having desired what ought to be desired,
    hold on to it till your desire is fulfilled.
Having asked what ought to be asked,
    hold on to it till you get it.
Having thought what ought to be thought,
    hold on to it till you have succeeded.
The Lord with mellowed heart must yield to your wishes.
Persevere, be tenacious, and never give up,
    for it is the quality of a devotee never to retreat or relent in resolve.
(Telugu poem)
This Athi Rudra Maha Yajna has to be performed in several places, in future. This Yajna is everyone's concern. It is not limited to one country, one religion, or one caste. It is performed for the welfare of the whole world. If you continue to perform this Yajna, soon the people of the entire world will become united. Pakistan, Afghanistan, Japan, America, Germany —all countries will be united.

You will now find several devotees in America. There are also several ritwiks (priests) there. There are some Muslim devotees also.

One lady has written a book about Swami. She presented it to her preceptor living in America. He was moved to tears on reading the book. He prayed that he should also be fortunate like her to write such a book on Swami. That book is now being printed and distributed to all.

We must unite the entire world into one. That is "Unity in Diversity".

Look! Even in our country Bharat, there are different regions, languages, etc. The once composite Madras province has split into twoÚ Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. There have been further divisions in the country. There is a clamour for some more divisions. It is no greatness in dividing the country into small regions by fragmentation. To unite the country into one is a great effort. Where there is unity, there will be purity. Where there is purity, there will be Divinity. Hence, we have to strive for unity.

There was a Russian boy, an Iranian boy, and some American boys in the group who chanted the Vedas yesterday. You have to realise and develop such unity. If there is some difference of opinion amongst you, remove it forthwith. Be united. All should live and move like brothers and sisters. Then only will you have value and will your birth as human beings be sanctified.

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