The Spiritual Journey of a Sai Student – Part 2

Sri Sathya Sai at the entrance of the Hostel that day...
Students! Your hearts are very sacred. Sacred feelings alone should arise from such sacred hearts. The delight you derive in life is in consonance with the feelings that arise from the heart. Each one of you lent expression to your feelings in different ways in different languages. The languages in which you uttered your poems are different, but the essence of joy in all your hearts is the same. The love that you nourished in your hearts burst out as showers of love in the form of these verses. Love alone is real and hence do not be lured away by the miasma of the physical and the material. We should cultivate love. The Gopikas sang the song of love thus: 
Sing O! Krishna, sing!
Sing on the flute the ecstatic song of Love.
Sow the seeds of Love in the desert sands devoid of Love.
Let there be rain of Love.
Let the seeds sprout into seedlings of Love.
Sing O! Krishna, sing!
Sing on the flute the ecstatic song of Love.
Let the streams of Love flow
From the heart and rush out as rivers of Love. 

The rain of love flows as a stream of love and becomes a river of love. It is all love from the beginning to the end. In the middle, all sorts of feelings may arise and go. But love neither comes nor goes like these feelings. Love is an eternal reality. You should nourish love in your heart every moment of your life. You should not harbour hatred against anyone, for your hatred for others is the reflection of the hatred in your heart. The love in your heart should grow day by day, become broad, and never narrow. It all depends on how you direct your love. If you are narrow-minded, your love too will flow narrowly. Even though the stars in the sky are far away from us, we can see their reflection in a tiny mirror. Your heart should reflect the Divinity in you, for the Lord resides as the indweller of your heart. 

The Lord in your heart, who exists as the Atma in you, is the very embodiment of Ananda. But sometimes, you entertain the notion that there is no joy in you. The cause for this is your own thinking. The Ananda is always in you; it neither comes nor goes. Suppose you are coming from the Ashram after Bhajans in the evening. While walking on the road in the dark, you think that there is a snake on the road. Then you switch on the torch light and find that you have mistaken a rope for a snake. The rope neither came nor vanished. It was there all the time. It was your imagination and mistaken notion. The beauty neither comes nor goes. It is the imaginary and transient feeling that comes and goes. Hence, you should nourish in your heart the eternal and not the transient. 

Students! All the learning that you have mastered was already there in you. How can you learn something that was not there in you before? All the learning latent in you manifests itself with time. It takes some time for a blossom to become an unripe fruit and an unripe fruit to become a ripe fruit. The unripe fruit that tastes bitter becomes sweet and delicious when it is completely ripe. Similarly, your heart is now like an unripe fruit, which, with the fullness of time, becomes sweet, as you cultivate love in it. This love, in course of time, fills your heart with the sweetness of peace. This peace has not come from outside. It has been there in you always, for you are the embodiment of Satya (Truth) and Dharma (Righteousness) as well as that of Shanti (Peace). But you are ignorant of your innate reality as you have been deluded by the physical and the external. For the waves in the ocean, the water in the ocean is the basis. Without water, there will be no waves. From the waters of love in your heart, the waves of Kama, Krodha, Moha, Mada and Matsarya (desire, anger, attachment, pride and jealousy) may arise now. Remain calm and quiet, without becoming hasty, for haste makes waste. Take your time. Suppose you have lost your temper, you should not act impulsively on the spur of the moment. You pause and ponder. When you start enquiring about the cause for your anger, your anger will abate and you will be peaceful. This kind of enquiry may cost you some time. But, it is highly rewarding. That is why I often say ‘Haste makes waste’.

Start early, drive slowly, and reach safely. You should start your spiritual journey in the early part of your life. You earn your degree only after completing your college education. But before that, you have to complete your education in the Primary School and the Higher Secondary School. Then, you have to complete your education in the college to be eligible to receive a degree. No degree is conferred on you during your Primary School and the Higher Secondary School days. Similarly, you have to go through the Karma Marga (Primary School), the Upasana Marga (Higher Secondary School) and the Jnana Marga (University). It is only after the successful completion of the course in the Karma Marga, Upasana Marga and Jnana Marga will you be eligible to earn the degree of Moksha – liberation. This degree of liberation will make you eligible to earn anything in the world. But, how will you earn this liberation? It can be earned essentially by going through the High School course of Upasana (Love). 

Students, you have a pure, tender, and stainless heart. But, you must keep this heart pure and free from pollution always. Evil feelings will pollute your heart. But, how does this evil enter into you? It is the evil company, which makes you evil. It is said, “Tell me your company, I shall tell you what you are”. Good company makes you good and bad company makes you bad. Hence, it is said,  

Satsangatve Nissangatvam, Nissangatve Nirmohatvam
Nirmohatve Nischalatatvam, Nischalatatve Jeevana Mukti
(Noble company nourishes detachment; detachment nourishes non-infatuation;
Non-infatuation nourishes steadiness; steadiness confers liberation.) 

You have come from different places with different backgrounds. After enjoying the noble company in Sathya Sai Institute, you have imbibed sacred feelings, which manifested itself as sweet poetry that you composed. Do you think this would have happened had you joined elsewhere? You are on the royal road now. Shine as pearls by standing as ideals to others. Be happy and share that happiness with your parents. You should not live for Swartha (selfishness), but for the Parartha (selflessness). Many a people strive only for their happiness and betterment. But selfishness is not the mark of a true human. Humans who are endowed with light, purity, and sanctity would not sink into selfishness. Purity secures unity and unity in its turn secures Divinity. 

Students, noble feelings will grow in you by leaps and bounds. You have recited verses full of sacred words. Plant these sacred words deep in your heart. But, beware of worldly temptations and associations.

Lord Govindaraja in the Ancient Temple at Tirupati
Once, there lived in Karnataka a poet called Ramana Shastri. He would visit Tirupati every month. During one of his monthly pilgrimages to Tirupati, he noticed that Lord Govindaraja was in a reclining posture keeping a vessel under his head. He addressed a verse to Lord Govindaraja in which he said, “Oh Lord, You are seen always sleeping. If You go on sleeping always like this, who will get rid us of our troubles and travails? Wake up from Your sleep and give joy to Your devotees. I will come to You next month. If I find that You are still sleeping I will go away from You forever and will never come back to You”. He visited Tirupati in the ensuing month and found that the Lord was still sleeping. He became furious and started going back to his town. On the way back, he repented for his folly and said in another verse, “Forgive me, Oh Lord! Steeped in worldly life, I have succumbed to the worldly tendencies and feelings. Being a worldly man, I attributed worldly passions to You. The fault is mine and not Yours”. 

There were many great poets like Ramana Shastri, who took birth in this sacred land of Bharat. Potana (1450-1510 AD) and Tikkana (1205-1288 AD) were great poets of this land. They experienced the Divine joy and shared it with others. It is My hope that you should become sacred poets like them and lend joy and ideals to others. You must keep the cloth of your heart always clean and pure. In case it has become dirty, apply the soap of Karma Marga, wash it in the water of Bhakti Marga and squeeze it dry with Jnana Marga. This is the way to clean your heart. Nurture these sacred feelings in the days to come and delight others with your feelings. 

The programme, which you have put up today, was extremely delightful. The way different speakers stood up from different places was very much enjoyable. Someone mentioned that I had come here only three years ago. But I have always been with you. I have come today for your sake and not for the sake of the Hostel. You mentioned that this is Your (Swami’s) Hostel. That utterance pained Me. You should say that it is ‘Our Hostel’. Use ‘our’ in every avenue of life. Our Mandir, our house, etc. ‘My’ and ‘Your’ signifies selfishness and narrow-mindedness. Rise above this and become broad-minded. 

You said that I had come three years ago. In fact, I came to Hostel many a time. Do not consider My physical being as the basis for your Sadhana. Take the eternal and the real as the basis for your adoration and worship. In fact, I did not want to speak. I wished to see more of your cultural activities. I wanted to hear more from you. Since you wanted Me to speak, I spoke. (Mentioning a Research Scholar’s name) He spoke a few words and asked me to speak. So I came here and spoke. My sweet Love for you flowed through My words. 

There is a direct and inseparable connection between you and Me. No one can break this bond. Wherever you may be, the same Sai is here, there and everywhere. You may go to distant places and work in different places, but I will be with you, in you, around you, behind you and above you. I follow you wherever you go. I follow you as your shadow follows you always. But I am not the shadow. I am the very being in you, the indweller. Firmly install in your heart the feeling: “I Am You. You Are Me.” 

Sri Sathya Sai Hostel for Senior Students, Prasanthi Nilayam
Given below is a short clip from Swami's Divine Discourse that day:

Excerpt from the Divine Discourse

Bhagavan was very happy with the students. After the Divine Discourse, the students requested Swami to have dinner with them. Although Swami hesitated in the beginning, at last He agreed to have dinner with the students. Swami also visited the kitchen. Swami left the Hostel around 6.35 pm. Before leaving, He fed Sai Geeta who was standing at the entrance of the Hostel. 

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