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Do You Want Something Valuable or Worthless

Date: Sat, 30 May 2009 23:08:26 -0600 To: AM-GLOBAL From: "Paul Paltrow" Subject: Do You Want Something Valuable or Worthless Baba "Toma'r ka'che ca'i na' kono ma'n, ca'i na' kono yash..." (P.S. 825) Purport: Baba, by Your grace I am not asking for any name, fame, or prestige from You. These type of desires I do not have. By Your grace, I do not want to plunge myself into the vanity of all those worldly things. Rather I want to keep my mind exclusively focused upon Your lotus feet. This devotional longing I have. Baba, since the crimson rays of the dawn, You have colored my days with the rainbow color. You have decorated everything. It is Your grace. When evening falls, then I feel Your proximity and Your divine dance. I see Your liila in the form of countless stars shining in the sky. Baba, all the time You are with me-- in all the spheres of my life. You make everything charming and colorful. What You have graciously done for me, that is enough. You have granted me everything. By hearing the chirping of the birds, I listen to Your songs. In this way, I feel Your blissful presence. And when the sky is covered with clouds and by the dance of the peacock, You create beauty in my life. Baba, everywhere I feel Your divine grace-- Your eternal presence in this divine liila. You are behind each and every expression of this universe. You are in every form. Everywhere I feel Your presence. I am never alone. In my good days and bad times, always You are with me. And in this way everything becomes meaningful and joyful. Baba, it is Your grace...
Namaskar, Baba wants what we should be successful and do something great in this human life. In so many discourses He reminds us about what is the aim of life as well as how we can achieve it. Of course every human being wishes to find greatness - lasting peace and happiness in life. Baba says, "There is in the living being a thirst for limitlessness." (A'nanda Sutram, 2-5, Purport) Everyone wants to do something great and create one permanent footprint on this earth. All want to do something lasting and be remembered forever. But, in this material world, it is very easy to get side-tracked and caught up in mundane, fleeting allurements like a big house, money, prestige, etc. We become blinded and think that crude objects can satisfy our longing of greatness. That is why Baba repeatedly warns us about the impermanence of mundane gains and vigilantly reminds us that we should be focused on the permanence of spiritual attainment. That is how we are to utilise our human life. In one Hindi discourse, the last chapter of AV-26 (H), Baba gives us a graphic example of the extreme temporary nature of worldly things. By this way we may again orient our focus to the Supreme and do something of eternal importance while on this earth.
The bulk of people on this earth chase after mundane fancies thinking this will be their heart's delight. Money, tasty treats, sexual escapades, fancy vacations, new cars - all these things dominate people's quest in this world. We see evidence of this every day on every street corner. But Baba categorically states that such things will not last . In His discourse, Baba says that getting mundane treats is like writing on the surface of water. Before one even finishes that task, the satisfaction or effect of that endeavor is gone. For instance, when former President Bush first came into office and attacked Afghanistan, then his approval rating was 90% and he was sitting on top of the world. Yet a short while later in that same presidency, he had the lowest approval ratings in history. Likewise, the so-called great financier Bernard Madoff held the accounts of the world's most famous people, and now he is living in infamy in prison. Similarly, Mrs Indhira Gandhi was thinking that she was unbeatable and that no worldly power could knock her from her perch, only to be later assassinated by her own body guard. And it is not just with famous people, everyone experience such things. People do everything for their physical beauty only to have that one day wither away. People find new mates thinking it to be heaven on earth. They think it will be long lasting and that they will never separate or quarrel. Yet then they suffer when they and their mate fight or kill each other, or their mate betrays them. If someone thinks that their relationship is good and will be a lasting force in their life, then all they need to do is wait for tomorrow. Because nothing mundane is permanent in this world. And there are so many examples that crop up. Baba says, "Today a hungry person may get relief from hunger with the help of money, but tomorrow the hunger will again return and the person will require more food. Liberation with the help of money can never be permanent." (AV-4) Baba says, "People run after money for the only reason that they believe they can maintain their lives under the shelter of money; that is to say, money alone can save them. But they do not know that money can provide them neither permanent stability nor a securely-founded shelter. Even during the span of their lives, money will come and go several times. At times its glamour will dazzle their eyes, and sometimes it will make them cry, hunger-stricken. Not to speak of money alone, all finite objects have this characteristic." (SS-1) Although money is needed, but it is not the goal of life - one should not dedicate themselves solely to earning money. That is why Baba says that although we have to live in this material sphere we should not take that as the summum bonum of life. Because those achievements will not last long - they are like writing in water, the epitome of impermanence, vanishing before our very eyes. It you want to have something permanent, spiritual sadhana is needed.
The next level up is in the intellectual plane or psychic pursuits. In this sphere of life, people learn new things, get university degrees, study other languages, gain mastery in physics or chemistry, become scholars etc. All these stand as psychic achievement. And they think that this is of permanent nature. This is their delusion. Because this type of learning and respect will not last forever. According to Baba these things also do not last long - here today gone tomorrow. Although they may not be as temporary as physical pleasure or comforts, intellectual learning will not stand the test of time. Baba says, "For example, after reading 200 pages of a book you will surely forget 199 of them. You cannot remember even one complete page, not even one full sentence. You are likely to confuse this word with that." (AFPS-7) Thus we can hardly retain anything that we learn. And not just that, we may engage our entire life in a particular profession only to one day become ignorant of that very topic. For instance, a Supreme Court justice may learn all there is to know about the law, only to then suffer from dementia later in life such that they cannot even remember their own name or who their sons and daughters are, let alone understand the first thing about the constitution. And what to speak of dementia, most adults in good health cannot even remember the nuances or fundamentals about they studied in university. So here again we see that intellectual achievement is also fleeting.
Rather than writing one's greatness on the surface of water as in the case of physical pursuits, or writing one's glory on the surface of sand as in intellectual pursuits, our approach should be writing in stone as in cultivating more and more devotion and reaching toward Him. As we know, that is the central approach for human beings because only devotion is permanent. Devotion, of course, means decreasing the radius or distance between oneself and Parama Purusa. And that progress is the only lasting progress in this universe. It stays with us not just throughout this life, but from one life to the next. For instance, most who come onto the path of Ananda Marga have good samskaras. They did some puja or spiritual practices in their previous life and that is why in this life they got Brahma as the Guru. Baba says, "Vaedikii diiks'a' is to request God, request the Lord, to show one the right path. And after a long time, when the Lord is satisfied, He arranges for Ta'ntrikii diiks'a'. Ananda Marga diiks'a' is Ta'ntrikii diiks'a'." (AV-3) Thus our spiritual endeavor and resultant devotion is lasting and stays with us up to our merger with Him, by His grace. Without our prior sadhana from past lives, in this life we would just be involved in dogmatic forms of prayer like idol worship, namaj, going to confession in the Catholic Church, doing deity puja, or visiting tiirtha sites and fake holy lands etc. While in this human body then we should engage the maximum amount of time in spiritual sadhana as that will have a permanent effect on our growth and development. That will lead us unto Him and the attainment of lasting peace and greatness on this earth. That is why in comparison to mundane and intellectual engagements, spiritual practice is like writing in stone. Devotion is lasting and will never leave us and with this quality all kinds of great things can be done - such sadhakas are remembered for ages and ages. Baba says, "This blended devotion enables spiritual aspirants to attain the pinnacled goal of their lives. It is this devotion that human beings have been seeking since time immemorial. When they finally attain the guru and get initiation, then they begin to walk on this path of devotion. And those who have started on this path realize that they are sure to reach their destination, that to reach their goal is the sole reason for their birth. You should remember why you have been born. Following the path of devotion, you will have to ultimately reach Parama Purus'a. This is the pinnacled point, the supreme point of human glory. You should always remember this, during your lifetime and even after your death." (YP)
So no one should waste their time on this earth chasing after material and mundane things, lest their life pass in vain. In the end, in the face of death, one will merely cry thinking that I have done nothing lasting on this earth. Baba says, "The worship of Brahma should be done scrupulously, or else you will later regret and bemoan the futility of your life with the last drop of your tears at your last hour. You should make your life worthwhile through your sa'dhana'. How much can your worldly friends and relations do for you? After your death your relatives may perhaps ask, “How much money has he left behind?” Your friends may go to the crematorium and indulge in flattering reminiscences about you. Your husband or wife may cry for you for about ten or twelve days and then regain their normal composure. Your lot will be only a profound sigh – a record of the futility and frustration of your life. So do not waste your time lest you later have to repent." (SS-3) None should face this predicament and the only escape is to engage wholeheartedly in spiritual life.
By Baba's grace He has given the path and the way to achieve lasting greatness on this earth and beyond. Baba says, "The goal of dharma is the attainment of Brahma; its base and its movement are Brahma-centered. Brahma is the Absolute Entity independent of time, space and person; He is permanent. Brahma sa'dhana', therefore, is the sa'dhana' for the attainment of the permanent entity." (SS-6) Namaskar, Punya'tman
Baba says, "People may ask, “We are ordinary people. If we always keep ourselves absorbed in the thought of Brahma, can we properly attend to our worldly duties?” To this my reply is, of course you can, and you will do them still more beautifully. In the worship of Brahma there is a method by which easily and perfectly every worldly duty can be performed." (SS-3)

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