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Only Mixture of East & West?

From: "Geoff Turnham" To: Subject: Only Mixture of East & West? Date: Mon, 11 Aug 2008 23:36:28 +0000 BABA "Tumi yadi na'hi ele more ghare ye keno alas prahare..." P.S. 4485 Purport: Baba, You are the most loving One. Yet if even in Your spare time, You have not blessed me by coming to my home, then what is the need for me to go on living on this earth. What is the use of my life. Why I continue to remain here. For whom should I continue to live. Please tell me. Baba, in the dark as well as in the light, always I look towards the path of Your arrival. I go on searching You in the garden, in the forest, in the mountains, hillsides, and on the seashore-- everywhere. Baba, days are coming and going; every morning my day starts with the hope to have You and every night it ends in hopelessness. The stars and planets are moving in their path and they are telling Your tales in my ears. With my heartfelt longing for You, in all the various ways whatever I know every moment, I request You to please grace me by coming. With my mind, heart and body I do sastaunga pranam to You again and again. Baba please come. Baba my life is for You, otherwise it does not have any value-- no meaning. Baba You are the Essence of essence; You are my everything...
Namaskar, We all know that Baba has made our AM as a special synthesis of east and west. However, care should be taken to understand exactly what aspects of east and west have been synthesized in this process. Because a few in their hasty and overzealous approach have taken the matter entirely in their own direction and indiscriminately mix and match all kinds of dogmas from the east and the west-- all along justifying that this is AM, or something similar thereof.
For example some of our avadhutas from the east come to the west and become enamoured by the glitzy and showy scene of western modernity. And in their thrill to pick up on some of the tricks of the west, they begin indulging in numerous dogmatic and unhealthy habits such as only using blotting paper (toilet paper) to clean themselves after clearing their bowels. Or certain of our Indian margii sisters upon reaching the shores of the US dress up in everything from high heels to layers of lipstick and make-up in order to join the tantalizing world of western professionalism. Hence in their desire to keep up with the superficially fast-paced corporate scene, they plunge themselves in various cosmetics and other pseudo-culture products. All the while feeling pretty good that they have made the grade. When in fact the overwhelming reality is that they have gotten sucked up into the myriad of western materialistic values. And some of our Indian Dadas get hung up on company-made, chemically-filled, tasty snack items from the west and other allurements which many say brings their demise like the tragic result of the former SS Dada who was befallen with Parkinson's disease. While another high posted Indian Dada places orders from his camp office for more "cheez doodles" to be brought by the caseload into India by visiting acaryas-- all because when he himself was in the west he got addicted to this snack item. Unfortunately this type of thing is typical when the movement is from east to west. Whereby some fall prey to western dogmas in their search to live a life based on a synthetic approach. Or at the very least they justify it like that.
Likewise some margiis from the west upon coming in AM start thinking that all eastern philosophies are great. And hence without a second thought they become die-hard advocates of the dogmatic ways of Buddhism or Hinduism etc. The mere mention of Buddhist teachings and they become googlie-eyed when in fact Baba Himself has shown countless aspects of Buddhism to be nothing but dogma. Or some of our overseas margiis and Dadas start making dogmatic pilgrimages from one ashram to another when visiting the east. No doubt they stop in on AM somewhere along the way but the bulk of their trips get filled with stops to this or that ashram like Sai Baba, the dogmatic wandering monks of Rishikesh, or any number of crude so-called saints like "the mother". While some even rush to take holy dips in the Ganges during the outrageously dogmatic gathering of the Khumba Mela. Here we are not talking about all Ananda Margiis-- but unfortunately some do like this. Even one of our overseas global AMURT Dadas never fails to make a trip to India without taking a few days of so-called spiritual refuge at the Yogananda (SRF) centre in Ranchi. And upon leaving their gates he begins propagating their ideals-- lost in the confusion that all eastern teachings are great, no matter which dogmatic guru they came from. No doubt, some few go for purely purposes of tourism, but many go for the attraction and fascination of that dogma. Otherwise what is the need to run from one ashram to the next when this globe is filled with so many other tourist attractions. But instead they go to those dogmatic centers and leave giving hugs of thanks to one and all and basking in the empty blessings of those dogmatic monks who have gotten fat off their donations. So like that the whole scene is taking shape whereby some totally misunderstand Guru's direction about synthesis of east and west & therefore they just foolishly jump that blindly into the mud. However, needless to say-- whether from east to west or from west to east-- this kind of dealing is all leading in the wrong direction.
Let us consider the whole issue of combining east and west in this following way. Suppose someone gives the suggestion to eat a mango. It does not mean that one will eat all the peelings of the mango and then ingest the pit. Doing like that is nothing but one mockery as that is not at all the spirit or intention of the suggestion. Rather a balanced minded person will understand that he should eat the pulp. That is the sweetness. Likewise, Baba has given the divine teaching that AM combines certain aspects from both the east and west. But that does not mean that one should blindly follow all the dogmas and misguided ideas of east and west.
Rather, as the majority of margiis realise, Baba is guiding us that we should follow the inherent attitudes or spirit of east and west- not their faulty philosophies or materialistic dealings. Hence, considering the true spirit, we should work industriously in the external world and at the same time give proper importance to spiritual pursuits. That is the attitude or spirit of east and west. Hence Baba has given the teachings of AM which are is based on the special combination or synthesis of subjective approach and objective adjustment. Baba says, "We can build up an ideal society only on the basis of a happy adjustment between the subjective and the objective approaches. Here is the greatness of A'nanda Ma'rga ideology." (PNS-18, p.30) Hence subjective approach and objective adjustment is the special synthesis which Baba is talking about when He references the idea of combining east and west. And from this very synthesis, He has graciously bestowed something entirely new and unique to the humanity. And that new and unique thing is-- the Ananda Marga ideology. Baba says, "Ananda Marga is a revolution. It is not only a spiritual revolution but also an economic, social and mental revolution. The economic system, the social structure, the trend of thinking, and the spiritual practices prescribed in our Ananda Marga are not only new but something quite different from the established ideas and practices in these spheres of life." (AFPS-7, p. 1) Namaskar, Gagan
Baba's dharmic guideline to one and all is that first we are to learn indepthly about Ananda Marga and then only after become deeply grounded in our own teachings of AM then one can begin to review other philosophies. And why review other philosophies? Not to get something from them but rather to use our knowledge of AM to tear down the dogmas of all other philosophies and expose the inherent defects of those crude and dogmatic approaches-- whether they be Buddhism, Hinduism, Zen etc, etc. That is the great spirit of Baba's teaching. To learn the dharma of AM and then with that pointed mind mercilessly expose the dogmas of all other teachings. All done to highlight the greatness of Ananda Marga and lead the humanity on the path of dharma. Baba says, "Ananda Marga alone is dharma and all the rest are sectisms." (SS-1 p. 63) Unfortunately, a few of our Dadas and margiis get stuck in the mud by not first clearly understanding AM teachings. So then with their shallow understanding, they get wonder-struck by the misguided preaching of other dogmatic philosophies. That is the sad result.
Unfortunately one high profile Didi has used various dogmatic eastern philosophies as a means to explain Baba's unique teachings of Ananda Sutram. Needless to say her approach is not at all up to the mark; rather it is inherently flawed and misguided. That is why her interpretation and explanation of Baba's sutras is mostly wrong. Perhaps in another letter someone else can say something further about this.
Baba says, "A correct spiritual ideology is the only solution to the problems confronting the world. From this perspective we can call Ananda Marga ideology the philosophers' stone. Just as the philosophers' stone is meant to transform everything into gold, Ananda Marga ideology can, most definitely, find a just and rational solution whenever it is applied to any problem." (POD, #36)
******************************************** About Channelisation
Baba says, "If people have a healthy body and mind their glandular system will remain balanced and they can easily channelise their physical energy into psychic and spiritual activities. This process of channelisation is the only way to check the mental flow towards crude propensities." (AFPS-9, p.35) Note: Here in His above teaching Baba is indirectly warning us that without doing proper sadhana and the regular practice of asanas, it is virutally impossible to reach towards the higher realms of life. Rather one will get caught up in the crude flow of this mundance world. So to enjoy the sweetness and bliss of spiritual life, kiirtan, sadhana, asana, pranayama, pratyhara, dhyana-- all these practices are needed. Otherwise spiritual realisation will remain as a distant dream only. By Baba's grace may we all be vigilant in this regard.

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