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Story: When Baba was 12 Yrs Old

From: "Shantatma Kerketta" To: Subject: Story: When Baba was 12 Yrs Old Date: Sun 23 Aug 2009 10:38:48 +0530 Baba "Ke ghumiye a'che tumi ja'n, d'a'k diye ya'o..." (P.S. 2179) Purport: Baba, as the Savior and Controller of the whole universe, You are well aware about who is sleepy and drowsy, and who has lost the path of divine effulgence. Baba, You know everything. Those who have lost the Goal, You always call them and show them the right path. Those who are crying bitterly after facing their defeat, with Your divine compassion You graciously show them the proper path for their forward journey-- and help them move ahead. Baba, You are the Sadguru. Hence those who remain forgetful about You as well as those who are always calling You with deep adoration full of longing and tears, with both these two opposite types of people, You shower Your divine grace on all-- without any differentiation. Baba, Your grace is for everyone. But crude people are not realising that You are gracious on them also. Whereas devotees realise. That is the difference. Baba, You grace everyone; Your greatness & glory is beyond explanation…
Namaskar, One day when Baba was around 12 years old, He was sitting in front of His house when one middle-aged man appeared on the road. The man was standing silently on one leg with his palms together.
(Note: This is one-legged stance is a particular body posture or mudra used by so-called brahmins to show deep reverence when they pray to their god. However, this person in the road was not a "brahmin", but rather a so-called harijan or untouchable. The man was standing in this position to show his own lowly status and express great respect to the landowners.)
The place where Baba was sitting was slightly higher than the level of the road, as the front yard of the house and entryway were raised up. The man looked at Baba and said, "Where is the respected master of the house?". The man was referring to Baba's esteemed father. The young Baba eagerly called to the man and asked why he was standing in the road. Baba then graciously invited the man to come up and sit next to Him on a mat that had been placed on the ground. The man replied, "That higher ground is not my place. I am a harijan so I cannot sit up there - on a mat on higher ground." Baba politely responded, "I am inviting you. As long as I am here there is no problem. You are welcome to come sit here. Please come." The man became very scared and said, "I am not going to do that." Baba gently pleaded, "What is going to happen (wrong) if you come and sit here - it is my request." The man replied, "If I sit there I will be beaten." Baba kept insisting and pleading for the man to come up and take a seat and He promised that He would not allow any harm to come to the man. Baba said that my father will be back in one hour and you are welcome to wait here with me. Ultimately, the man refused and left the scene.
The young Baba was unhappy seeing how this aged man was totally bound and shackled by caste dogma. The caste system had made the man believe that he was sub-human, inferior, low, and worthless. It was on that day that Baba took the strong vow to remedy the situation and create a human society based on universality where all are treated as equal human beings. That moment Baba decided to eradicate all caste distinctions.
As we all know there are so many horrors, injustices, and humiliating aspects of the caste system that have been entrenched in Indian society for thousands of years. Today, by Baba's grace, things have improved a lot. But in that pre-World War II era when Baba was still a boy, most caste distinctions were thriving. Baba says, "The evils of the caste are nowhere better known than in India." (AFPS-7) Note: We all know that similar evils exist in the form of racism, communalism, and overall hatred in all parts of the globe, whether it be genocide in Africa, gang rapes in Los Angeles, or street violence in France etc. Some examples of caste denigration in India include: So-called low caste people would wear a degrading cow-bell around their neck so as to warn others that an "untouchable" was coming down the street. Then general citizens would be sure not to touch that low caste being and not even let their shadow touch them. So-called low caste people were also made to wear a broom attached to their backside so that the dirt or mud road would not be polluted by the feet of those so-called untouchables. And here Baba points out other horrors about the caste system: (A) In this below quote, the so-called low caste people were brutally punished and tortured if they heard vedic chants. Baba says, "The Antyaja Shu'dras, if they even heard the Vedic chants, or the controlling Vedic mantra aum, or the Savitr Rk mantra, would be committing a great sin and molten lead would be poured into their ears so that their hearing would be destroyed forever." (NSS, Disc: 5) It goes without saying that it was absolutely forbidden for such so-called lower caste people to go to any temple and worship etc. (B) Here Baba points out how the caste system deemed shudras to be the lowest of the low. Baba says, "Even the Supreme Entity, that formless omnipresent Parama Brahma who equally belongs to all, who is the light of all light, the dearest and nearest One, is also denied. It has been said in the above shloka that the Vipras [Brahmans, intellectuals] have been born out of the mouth of Brahma' [the Creator]; the valorous Ks'atriyas [warriors] have emerged out of His hands; the Vaeshyas [capitalists] out of His thighs; and the Shuudras [labourers] out of His feet." (APH-5) (C) In this below paragraph, it is shown how low caste people were not even allowed to get their own water from the well if they were thirsty, for fear that they would pollute the water. They had to wait and hope to be given water by others. Baba says, "The prince alighted from his horse and, saluting him, asked, “O Brother! Are you in difficulty”? Before the man could answer, the prince understood from his countenance that he was thirsty and, as he had not drawn water even though he has a bucket and rope by his side, he must be a so-called “untouchable”. So that prince himself raised a bucket of water and said to him, “Methinks you are thirsty. Drink this water and then tell me of your needs”. The man drank water to his heart’s content." (GL) (D) Here below Baba further points out the humiliation thrust upon the so-called lower caste people. Baba says, "Hundreds of dogma were imposed on people: “Do not do this, it is prohibited. If you do it you will go to hell.” The effect of such a statement was to inject a fear complex into people’s minds. According to mythology, the so-called upper castes were born from the mouth of god. It was stated that the so-called low caste people were not entitled to wear shoes on their feet or carry umbrellas over their heads in upper caste neighbourhoods." (APH-5) More about cast distinctions have been cited in the notes after the signature. Suffice to say here that casteism struck deep into the psyche of the people. Baba says, "For centuries so-called low caste people have lived a life of humiliation and insult, and consequently their minds have become inert. Tragically, they accept this condition as the result of their fate." (PNS-17) By Baba's grace He has taken the vow to remove all caste distinctions, and this has been a tremendous boon for our human society.
As one might recall, the first PA in Ananda Marga was PK Chatterjee and he was a brahmin by birth. Those days Baba was still living in his mother's house and when PK Chatterjee would arrive then all the members of the house would come and touch PA's feet, because he was born of higher caste than Baba's loakik family. Then in secret, in that same house, PK Chatterjee would massage Baba's feet, recognising Baba as the Sadguru. Such is the liila of Parama Purusa. Here the point is that casteism touched all aspects of Indian society, even within Baba's own house. Then that fateful day Baba told His mother that casteism was totally unjust and that He would wipe it out entirely. She replied, "Oh my son, in the past so many people have made similar declarations but nobody could change it. In that case what can You really do." Baba's mother was not aware of Who He is, so that was another part of the liila. As Ananda Margiis we understand well who Baba is and how He has graciously set the wheels in motion to eliminate casteism and so many harmful isms from this earth.
Baba step by step tore down the caste system through two distinct methods: His practical programs and by illuminating this world with His spiritual vibration. On the practical side, here are a few things Baba has done. 1. He gave tantric diiksa (spiritual initiation) to all people, irrespective of their birth etc, and made acaryas out of both so-called untouchables and so-called brahmins. Our acarya culture is a mix of all peoples, wherein even so-called untouchables who became acarya receive pranam from others. 2. Baba insisted that no one (i.e. so-called brahmins) entering AM could keep their sacred thread and sacred hair. Those things had to be cut off. 3. Baba instituted inter-caste and inter-race marriages, i.e. revolutionary marriages. This was a huge change because in India even the Muslims adhered to the caste system, whereas throughout the Islamic world caste system is not followed. So by the above programs and more, Baba graced this earth by undoing thousands of years of caste distinctions and injustices. And with His neo-humanism, He has set the stage to wipe out similar injustices all over the globe. Because each and every land has their own issues of hatred and exploitation. Of course the brahmin priests were furious with Baba as they felt He was making attacks on their Hindu way of life. They felt severely threatened, yet Baba did not yield. By His grace He has spread the ways of manav dharma and one human society to all. Thus both through His practical programs and all encompassing grace, He has cleared the pathway to wipe out casteism and all isms and hatred from this earth entirely. And it all began on the fateful day when the simple man stood out in front of Baba's house. That was the way Baba chose to unfold His liila.
By Baba's grace our Ananda Marga is based on the universal sentiment of one human society where are all treated with equal love and respect. This grand idea is reaching every aspect of human life, by His grace. Baba says, "In our Ananda Marga, the entire human race is considered one family, bound by the common bonds of love. In A'nanda Ma'rga, one introduces oneself as a mere living being, so here it is impossible to establish anything but a caste-less society." (TK-2) Namaskar, Shantatma
Baba's below example graphically displays how caste distinctions seep deep into the mind and ruin the human intellect. Baba says, "Repression directly affects the subconscious mind. Gradually the psychic structure is severely damaged, and finally the mind is totally changed. The result is that people are inflicted with a defeatist psychology and an inferiority complex. Let me give you an example. The headmaster of a Harijan school once asked a student to fetch him some drinking water, but the boy did not move. Instead he asked a non-Harijan friend in a low voice to do as the headmaster requested. But the headmaster intervened and asked the boy why he would not comply with the request. The student replied, “Sir, I am an untouchable by caste. How can you drink water touched by me?” This is an example of how repression can bring about a change in the psychic structure." (PNS-17)
Here Baba is showing how even the great Shankaracarya was prone to caste distinctions as he did not want to be touched or polluted by a so-called untouchable. Baba says, "Lord Shankaracharya was an erudite scholar. He has over-thrown Buddhism and revived Brahmanya religion, but there was a lack of full harmony between his principles and practices. Once after having a dip in the Ganges at Kashii, he was returning towards the road and he saw an untouchable walking with a number of dogs. For fear of his body being touched he attempted to bypass them. Then the untouchable said: “O Lord! Is this the result of your principle that there is only Brahma and nothing else? You are known by the name Brahmajina'ni. The feeling of differentiation is developed even by treating a pariah as mean." (SS-1)
In this below example, even small kids were indoctrinated into the superiority of the caste system and older people were forced to bow down. Baba says, "Even a five- or six-year-old boy from the so-called upper caste would extend his feet to accept pran'a'm from an eighty-year-old man of a lower caste. Those young boys did not feel the slightest prick of conscience or humanity. This was the ill result of caste distinctions. But today that opportunistic structure of casteism has already been destroyed, it can collapse at any moment." (SC-11)
********************************************* About the Wealthy
Baba says, "It must always be remembered that the value of money lies in its proper use. If more money is accumulated than what is necessary, it becomes valueless for want of use. To the extent that you keep idle and valueless money with you, to that extent you become responsible for the injustices done to the hungry and the naked. Your valueless hoard will have to be made valuable by providing opportunities for use by others. Those who do not know the right use of money on the basis of the exchange of mundane resources are in fact the enemies of society." (HS-1, p.41)

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