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What Word to Use

From: "Vinay Deva"
Subject: What Word to Use
Date: Fri, 19 Aug 2011 21:41:05 +1000


"Tumi saba'r bha'loba'sa' peyecho..."   (P.S. 1383)


 Baba, everyone loves You. And You receive everyone's heartfelt love. You look upon all with the same eyes-- with no differentiation. You always think about everyone's all-round welfare. You are concerned with one and
all; everyone is Yours.

In the burning heat when life is becoming unbearable, then You shower us with Your grace. And You take away all our pains and sufferings. Baba, You are ever-gracious.

When the heart starts bleeding due to the blow of different negative samskaras from the present, past, and future, then You saturate those suffering hearts with the divine nectar of Your love. In that way You graciously take away all their problems in the showering of Your divine compassion. 

On the dark amavasya night when it is pouring rain all around, even that time You bring effulgence through the medium of firefly. Like this You provide the solution to each and every situation. It is Your grace. 

Baba, You love all and You know how to love. You give utmost importance to human life. And everyone is looking towards the path of Your arrival. Those who are crying and suffering, You have given them shelter at Your lotus feet. 

Baba, You are granting boons and blessings to everyone. You are grace personified...


We all know that Baba's pristine & perfect teachings of Ananda Marga are 100% dogma-free. So everything Baba has given is itself dharma. And that includes all our various practices and forms of salutations including doing namaskar.

However there are some who have their own view and are involved in mixing 'namaskar' with other things-- like 'giving thanks', 'giving salute' etc.  That is what happens: People confuse our dharmic AM teachings with local dogmas.

To gain perfect clarity of the matter we need only to consult Baba's divine guidelines.


Specifically, in one special chapter of Caryacarya, Baba Himself outlines the beauty and uniqueness of the various salutations used in AM-- including doing namaskar.

Baba says, "There are three methods of salutation: (1) sa's't'aunga pran'a'ma [prostration], (2) ca'rana sparsha pran'a'ma [touching the feet], (3) namaska'ra." (CC-1, '95 Edn, p.16)

Thus in our AM there are three different grades or levels of salutation. And each has its own speciality and use. Yet one common feature among them all is that they all involve doing something-- they all incorporate mudras (postures).


For example, as we all know our namaskar salutation is one special type of performance or action where 'doing' is involved.

Baba says, "Namaska'ra is done by bringing the palms together and touching the a'jina' cakra [the midpoint of the eyebrows] with the thumbs, without bowing. It can be done to all regardless of age, because this mode of salutation is used with the ideation that everyone is the manifestation of the Supreme Being'. (CC-1, '95 Edn, p.16-17)

So, as we have all experienced in our daily life, with full heart and mind we follow  various actions and mudras (postures) in order to do the namsakar salutation.

First we have to fold our hands and raise them to the ajina cakra, close our eyes, touch the trikuti (spot between the eyebrows), take our ideation, and then bring the hands down to the level of the heart (anahata cakra), and finally we say, 'namaskar'.

So as per Baba's system, namsakar is something that is done using certain specific mudras and movements.

Whereas in the common society the mere passive expression of 'giving thanks' etc is not like that. Because 'giving thanks' does not incorporate any sort of doing or action. It is basically static in nature.

Whereas namaskar is a distinctly active salutation wherein the sadhaka has to do something because the active science of mudra (posture) is involved.


And similar is the case with caran'a sparsha pran'a'ma. As is commonly understood, caran'a means 'feet' and sparsha means 'touch'. So this salutation also involves doing something. Means it is not just the passing of words like when one gives thanks.

Rather in this special mudra or posture known as pranam one has to bend down, extend the hands and touch the respected person's feet, and bring the hands up to the ajina cakra and touch the trikuti, and then and with full feeling and admiration bring the folded hands to the heart and say, 'pranam'.

So just like in the namaskar salutation, also when doing caran'a sparsha pran'a'ma various mudras are involved. Here below Baba specifically describes the process.

Baba says, "Caran'a sparsha pran'a'ma means to touch the feet of a revered person with one's hands and then to touch one's forehead with those same hands. This pranam should only be done to those who command high regard from the worldly or spiritual viewpoint. As far as possible, do not do caran'a sparsha pran'a'ma except to persons such as these. Never to caran'a sparsha pran'a'ma to people whom you do not regard, whoever they may be." (CC-1, '95 Edn, p.16)


The third system of salutation in the AM system is sa's't'aunga pran'a'ma. And in this mudra or posture one also has do many things.

With full reverence first one has to lie down, then extend the hands in full prostration, touch all the eight limbs, and arouse the feeling of surrender, and after surrendering then rise up half-way from the ground and shift the body to the kneeling position, and while kneeling then fold the hands and bring them up to the ajina cakra and touch the trikuti and then bring the hands to the level of the heart (anahata cakra)-- all the while mentally surrendering to Baba.

So the whole process of doing sastaunga pran'a'm is one big thing; and while doing it one is deeply involved. In comparison 'giving thanks' is one paltry vocal expression whereas doing sastaunga pranam incorporates all the limbs, indeed the entire body is involved, and on the top the sadhaka mentally surrenders to Marga Gurudev.

Here following is Baba's pointed guideline:

Baba says, "Sa's't'aunga pran'a'ma is a symbol of simplicity. It is to be done only to Ma'rga Guru. It signifies surrender to ideology. Women can do salutation by touching the ground with the forehead instead of full prostration." (CC-1, '95 Edn, p.16)

Hence our dharmic AM salutation system is three tiered: Namaskar, Pran'a'm, and Sa's't'aunga Pran'a'm. And they are all linked together in that all the salutations involve doing various mudras etc. So it is *not* that we "do sa's't'aunga pran'a'ma" and we "do caran'a sparsha pran'am" but that we just "give namaskar". No, this is not our way.

Rather just as we "do sa's't'aunga pran'a'ma" and we "do caran'a sparsha pran'am" in the same way we "do namaskar".

Hence all the three salutations are done in a complementary spirit of using specific ideations and their own particular mudras etc. And each is based in dharma. So we should be vigilant about not allowing dogmas like 'giving thanks' or "giving salute' to sneak into our practices. About this more is told in notes 1-5 below.

Here following is Baba's gracious blessing on one and all.

Baba says, "You are all sadhakas; you are all spiritual aspirants...I certainly know you will be successful in your mission. Kalya'n'amastu-- [May you all be blessed]. (AV-33, p. 11)



Because certain Wts and Margiis are accustomed to using the expression 'give thanks' then in their habitual or narrow way of thinking they applied this 'give' term to our namaskar practice also. Thus they established the dogma of 'give namaskar'. And they themselves got mentally habituated with that. Their minds got stuck in that dogma. But not only that, if they would have had a little more opportunity they would have instituted other dogmas such as referring to our AM sadhana practice as 'prayer' or 'namaz'. This type of dogma they also would have created. And furthermore they would have labeled our Guru Puja practice as 'kneeling down posture for prayer worship'. In this way when given a little scope people end up creating all sorts of dogmas and that is what has happened in the case of 'give namaskar'. So we should all be conscious and alert about this and we should be strict in following Baba's system.


Not only that but this 'giving namaskar' dogma degenerated even one step further. Because some confused type of persons have even started writing in their books and articles that, 'Baba came on the dais and gave namaskar'. But this is just their terrible misunderstanding because we all know that Baba never gives namaskar-- rather He blesses us with folded hands. So those who have an iota of common sense will never say or write that Baba gave namaskar. Devotees only can understand this, others not.


Everyone is aware that when Muslims perform their namaz then it is their normal practice to ask for things from the god. They ask for money, good jobs, husbands for their daughters, and other types of worldly things. One time a very new person from the Muslim tradition was taught our introductory sadhana lesson then he had not yet learned Guru Puja. So when he saw various margiis doing Guru Puja for the first time he immediately became very happy. Because the Muslim namaz posture looks identical to our Guru puja pose. From the outside both look the same. So when he saw margiis doing Guru Puja then he approached them and said, 'Oh when you do that type of namaz then what boons and gifts do you ask for from the god?'. Then the margiis told that, 'Actually, in our Guru Puja we offer ourselves-- we do not ask for anything.'. Hence although from superficial view namaz and Guru Puja are looking similar but actually they are completely different-- worlds apart. Same is the case with 'giving thanks' and 'doing namaskar'. One has nothing to do with the other. In all these cases we have to remember that Ananda Marga is the only dharma and all those religions etc are grounded in dogma.

In this regard we should never forget Baba's eternal guideline:

Baba says, "A'nanda Marga alone is dharma and all the rest are sectisms." (SS-1 p. 63)


Here Baba gives us one special guideline for doing namaskar.

Baba says, "You should always make an effort to do namaskar to others first." (AMIWL, p.827)


Here Baba reveals what happens - i.e. the unique effect - when we do sastaunga pranam to Sadguru.

Baba says, "When you do sastaunga pranam to a Great Personality...the blessing will have a positive effect on your whole being." (YP)

Health Guideline

BABA says, "Mu'lashodhana: After defecating, insert the middle finger of the left hand as far up the rectum as possible and clean that area." (CC-3, Point #3 of 'Different Yoga Practices')

Note: Those who are not doing this may suffer from digestive tract disorders and rectum diseases like piles.

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