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One Must Not Incur Debt

From: ramakrishna@geo-tech.....
Subject: One Must Not Incur Debt
Date: Fri, 25 Jan 2013 21:06:27



With finances a key issue nowadays, this below Baba story is very relevant.

Capitalist exploitation has reached such a height that they not only dictate what is sold but also how people purchase. Their concept of consumerism has reached deep into the human psyche. This entire letter contains real life scenarios, personal experiences, and one grand Baba story for how to escape the capitalist strategy of pushing everyone into debt.


A while back, one sincere margii family was short of the needed amount in order to purchase a large and expensive item for the home. Unsure what to do, the margii consulted with one Acarya as to how to proceed. As he was sincere and hoping to become tattvika in the near future so the margii did not want to disobey - rather he abided by Baba's guideline to seek the permission of an acarya before taking a loan or going into debt.

And when he asked, then straight away Acaryaji turned down the margii's request - stating that it is not good to take loan unnecessarily on this point because this is not Baba's system nor our way in Ananda Marga. Because in Prout Baba gives open permission for people to go into debt only on the point of constructive industrial production. In contrast, on superficial business affairs or on personal luxury items, best is to avoid taking a loan. That is Baba's teaching.

In response, the margii replied with a second proposal: I will not borrow money from any bank or outside institution but perhaps one of our Ananda Marga jagrtis or Ananda Marga cooperatives has the needed capital in which case they can transfer some money to me, temporarily. But this too was denied.

Like this the discussion was going on back and forth in a gentile manner and it culminated with Acaryaji recounting his own personal experiences watching Baba and by telling the ensuing Baba story on this very point of taking loan.

And by hearing these experiences and stories everyone got the pathway as to how to solve the problem.


Acaryaji began: 'According to my understanding and Baba's teaching that I received in so many reporting sessions which I attended from 1975 to 1990. Taking a loan is completely prohibited, against the rules. Baba is very strict that if anybody is found guilty of taking loan, then the consequences are serious punishment'.

He continued, 'I do not know any occasion when Baba has appreciated someone going into debt. Or taking loan for any work: Relief, or building construction or jagrti, anything. And, if anybody took a loan then they were scared and they did not reveal anything about their loan / debt because of fear of punishment by Baba.'


Then he told that this following BABA story will shed more light on this matter. And he read to us the following as recounted by one Dada.

     "I received a lesson I will never forget. We were in Ranchi in 1969. It was then our camp headquarters. I was general secretary and attending a never -ending sessions trial in Midnapur, West Bengal, on the horrific murder of five of our monks (at Anandanagar, 5 March 1967) and a huge amount of money was being drained out of our treasury to pay the ongoing legal costs. Much would depend on the verdict of the court; we were fighting the case heart and soul.  Our funds were almost exhausted, but we were only halfway through the case. I was at my wit's end when an idea occurred to me. One of the mission's departments had deposited about ten thousand rupees in the central treasury. They had planned to buy a car to use for social service. Left with no other way out, I sent a special messenger to Ranchi and fetched that money. We heaved a sigh of relief as we escaped the crisis for the time being.

      The case came to a finish at last. The court sentenced eight of the culprits to life imprisonment and others to rigorous imprisonment for different terms. There was no denying it: the verdict vindicated dharma and demoralized those who had masterminded the heart-rending massacre at Anandanagar.

     A few days later the workers from that department began to urge me to repay their money. I was on the lookout for resources, but my efforts were taking a long time. Eventually Baba heard of the entire affair.

     When He came to know of it, He took exception to it. He came to the office that day and called all the central workers of the different departments. He demanded an explanation from me.   

Baba asked, 'Don't you know the policy of our mission about lending and borrowing?'.

     'Yes, Baba,' I said.

     'If that is so', Baba continued, 'why didn't you get permission from the president (that is, Baba Himself) before siphoning the money from one department to another?'.

     'We were in extreme need at the time. I felt we had no other option than taking this loan.  It was an emergency'.

     'You ought to have informed the president of that emergency. Moreover, you could have taken the permission of the departmental head before spending the money.'

     Baba's displeasure was extreme, and He scolded (see note 1) me severely for breaking the rules of financial propriety of the organization. My discomfiture was writ large on my face. I admitted my guilt and promised not to do it again in the future.

     Decades have passed and much water has passed under the bridge since then, yet even now I can visualize the unrelenting image of that strict administrator - our loving Baba. That scolding is etched into my memory. That lesson has made me stand firmly on my feet and I have never thought again of borrowing money though the mission has scraped through countless difficulties over the years. Want of money was - and is, and always will be - there, but the virtual ban on borrowing has never stalled my work. For that matter I have never had to compromise on principles. His grace has helped me through every time." (My Days with Baba)


After reading this dramatic story Acaryaji shared some further points.

'Under no conditions then is it justified to take a loan. In this above story one worker was facing an extraordinary situation those days in Ananda Nagar regarding the lawsuit against the communists about those murder charges. And the court case was going on-- money was needed to save the situation. So much urgency. Even then Baba strongly objected the action of taking loan and Baba scolded Dadaji.'

'Given the circumstances what can be more a critical situation for taking loan than this murder case? Yet you see how Baba disapproved. So I think that there should not be any doubt or confusion about Baba's teaching on this policy of incurring debt or taking loan etc.'

'If Baba would have allowed or appreciated taking loans then it would have created the biggest problem or hazard all around. Many Wt's who left would have gotten loans and then the major portion of that money they would have taken with them when they left the organisation. Then the new Dada who was posted to that place would have faced the serious problem of paying back the debt which was incurred by his predecessor Dada who left. So in Ananda Marga Baba did not allow any WT to take loan. This is not limited with Wt's alone. This the rule is for all.'

Hearing all this the margii got convinced in the core of his heart that he should never unnecessarily incur any loan or debt. And he understood that to make such purchases he should either increase his income or consciously live within his present financial means.


Here is a very short addendum to this topic where one Dada posed the following query to Baba.

Acaryaji, "Sometimes a really good man may fall into trouble and sincerely need help. In that case, what is to be done?"

Baba said, "Instead of lending him money, you should help him according to your capacity. Suppose he is asking for five thousand rupees. Tell him your attitude about lending money and let him know your financial condition. Then help him with an amount that's within your means. It may not be as much as he demands, but he will get consolation that you tried to share his difficulties." (My Days with Baba)

Below is a short review.

If someone is really in a terrible situation - such as their house burned down or became drastically flooded - and the government is not helping, then what is to be done? If one cannot take a loan then what is to be done.

At that point, those who are friends and well-wishers of the victim can offer financial contributions - not loans but gifts. That money is not to be paid back. The victim might be in need of and asking for thousands of dollars etc. Those offering that financial support must not give beyond their means. When offering their economic gift to the victim, explain your financial situation to the victim and he will understand and appreciate whatever amount you are able to offer.


Baba says, "Not to consult anybody at the time of spending money but to ask for help from all when in debt, is not a good practice. Such a mentality cannot be encouraged. To purchase, by incurring surely against the principle of aparigraha." (1)

   "It is often noticed that individuals incur debt because of their violating the principles of Yama and Niyama, especially due to their extravagance – and as a result, they approach the society for relief. In this connection I must point out that just as the society is duty-bound to give relief to individuals by combined efforts, so also it must have control over the conduct of individuals, over their practice of the principles of Yama and Niyama, and also over their expenditure. Not to consult anybody at the time of spending money but to ask for help from all when in debt, is not a good practice. Such a mentality cannot be encouraged.
   "To purchase, by incurring debt, serge where tweed will do, or gaberdine where serge will do, is surely against the principle of aparigraha. Similarly, people should take food which is nutritious but not rich. They have to give up the practice of feeding others with money taken on loan. That is why social control over the individual’s conduct and expenditure is indispensably necessary. Hence, all Ananda Margis, when they see other Margis acting against the principles of Yama and Niyama, must make them shun this habit either by sweet or harsh words or by dealing even more strictly. Thus they will have to make the society strong. Henceforth I direct every Ananda Margi to keep strict vigilance on other Ananda Margi to make them practise the principles of Yama and Niyama and also to accept calmly directions of other Margis in this connection."
   "I am also giving one more advice in regard to aparigraha. If any Margis have to spend on anything in addition to the fixed expenditure (for example, expensive clothing, ornaments, articles of furniture, marriage, building, etc.), they should, before incurring such expenditure, obtain a clear order from their ácárya, unit secretary or district secretary, or any other person of responsible rank. Similarly, permission is to be obtained before taking loan from any businessman or money-lender. Where one’s own ácárya or any person of responsible rank is not easily available, consultation or rather permission is to be obtained from any other ácárya, táttvika or any right-thinking member of the Marga. Every member should follow this instruction strictly." (2)

"Arranging the feast by taking a loan or incurring a debt is prohibited." (3)

"For the celebration of this ceremony the arrangement of a social feast depends entirely on the desire and the financial position of the guardians concerned. Taking a loan or incurring a debt for this purpose is forbidden." (4)


Here below Baba exposed the modus operendi of moneylenders. This type of scenario can happen to anyone who takes a loan - theirs will be a miserabele fate.

"The exploitation by capitalists and landlords is accompanied by the exploitation by moneylenders. In the rural economy they lend money to the farmers and rural peasants, and are present in nearly every village and hamlet of West Bengal. Where the landlords are not physically present, their loyal agents are very active. The moneylenders have nothing to do with the land – they merely give loans to the poor farmers at high interest. Sometimes poor farmers cannot afford to procure farming implements, hence they are compelled to take loans from the moneylenders. If a moneylender gives one hundred rupees to a farmer, the farmer will have to repay two hundred rupees with interest, but the moneylender does not take back the loan in cash. Instead he realizes the amount in kind in the form of paddy, potatoes, etc., at cheap rates at the time of the harvest. The poor farmer, under the pressure of circumstances, has to accept this unwelcome system. He is a double loser – first, he has to pay more than double the amount of the original loan, and secondly, this amount is paid in kind at the rate of the harvest price of the crop, which is naturally very cheap. This whole process is conducted through agents, who also take their profit. Thus, the peasants and farmers of India are deprived of all their agricultural produce in four to five months of the year to repay the moneylenders, so for the remaining seven to eight months they have to approach the moneylenders again for fresh loans. At first they mortgage their implements, and then they are forced to part with their land. When the amount of the loans with compound interest increases to the point where the interest and the mortgage is equal to the price of their land, the moneylenders confiscate the land of the farmers. Consequently, the farmers get evicted from their land and move from village to village, living on the streets as beggars." (5)


Here Baba guides us that only businesses can take loans.

Baba says, "The science of economics teaches that the rolling of money should never be blocked by any sort of non-productive investment. Sometimes people misuse loans to construct an unnecessary building or a new showroom for their business, and thus prevent the possibility of reinvesting the capital and increasing their wealth. Economics teaches that loans taken for business investment should always be utilized for productive purposes, and should never be utilized in any unproductive venture. Foreign loans, for example, should never be invested in constructing large railway stations instead of railway lines." (6)


In this present era, it is critical to follow Baba on this matter of incurring loans. Failing that one will have neither financial stability nor mental peace.

at His lotus feet,


Sentient Anger (Sattivka Krodha): The Propounder of Ananda Marga, Baba - Lord Shrii Shrii Anandamurti ji is the embodiment of dharma. One of the characteristics of a dharmika is akrodha or non-anger. Baba perfectly embodies this quality. Those close to Baba understood that He never became angry. Only He would feign anger or show as if He was angry in order to teach and impress upon others the severity of a particular situation. By this way He would express sentient anger. So never can one truly say that Baba was ever furious or mad etc. Just He would display anger externally in order to lovingly guide His devotees.

1. Guide to Human Conduct, p.29
2. Guide to Human Conduct, How to Live in Society
3. Carycarya - 1
4. Carycarya - 1
5. Proutist Economics, Economic Exploitation of Bengal
6. Proutist Economics, Keep Money Rolling – Excerpt A

My Cousin Got Peculiar Samadhi

   Baba says, "By the way you should know that samádhi does not only occur as a result of a certain realization; other samádhis can occur on indriyas or the five fundamental factors. When the mind is focused on a particular object and becomes intensely concentrated it is called samádhi. According to spiritual science the samádhi attained when the entire mind is pin-pointed on Parama Puruśa is called prajiṋá samádhi."
   "When a sádhaka focuses his or her mind on the solid factor (solid is one of the five fundamental factors) and thinks “I am the earth” he or she attains kśitibhaetik samádhi, losing all practical intelligence in the process. Those who constantly think about rupees or dollars attain a kind of samádhi, too, for they become completely identified with their crude object of attraction. If such people incur heavy losses due to the collapse of their business or bank, they will die an instant death, for the pillars on which their life was built crumbled beneath them. So, once they lost their wealth, they lost their lives too." (Ananda Marga Philosophy in a Nutshell, Ekendriya – 7)

Note: Tragically, my own cousin experienced this type of negative samadhi. During the economic downturn in 2009, he became very worried about his finances. He had an inheritance of 20 million dollars and he thought he was going to lose it all. He experienced a very strange, deep, dark depression and feelings of hopelessness and helplessness.

Finally, his mind just stopped - and he sat there frozen - completely fixated on the prospect of losing all his money. He sat in a comatose state completely engrossed in thoughts about losing money - everything else in his mind vanished. It was just money, money, money. He skipped his food, ignored natural call, and sat in one spot all day long for almost 1 week. He did not die, but he came very close to death. When at last he emerged from this state, he was totaly unaware about what had happened. It was as if he had been in a vacuum.

Baba's warning is that mundane things like money or wealth should never be one's object of ideation. Worldly things are by definition transient. They slip away. And when that happens, people become shocked, even spellbound. This becomes very serious for those who were very attached with those objects. They will fall into a state of terrible misery, and perhaps even death. In state they will become yaksa microvita.

Best is to goad and point the mind to Parama Purusa.

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