Sri Sathya Sai On: Lessons from the Mahabharata – Part 2

The Five Fingers Fight

If the five fingers are united then you can achieve anything. With unity you can achieve anything. But one day, the five fingers started quarreling with each another. They started saying that one is greater than the other. The little finger said, “If you have to advice somebody then I am in the forefront. Thus I am the biggest. My height may be less, but in advising, I am in the forefront.” Then the second finger said, “I am great. Whenever a ring has to be put on, it is put on me first. The first offering is always to the king and not for others. Therefore I am greatest.” After sometime the middle finger laughed aloud and said “I am the tallest among all of you. I have 2 bodyguards on either side. Thus I am greatest.” Then the forefinger said, “Whatever you say is futile. I am the greatest. I am the decision maker. I show which is good, bad, right and wrong then only you will act. I demonstrate the truth. I demonstrate the right thing. I am the greatest.” The other four had to accept this. Finally the thumb laughed aloud. It said, “You can’t do anything without me. Without me you all are just pieces of decoration. Thus I am the greatest of you all.” When we look at it from the worldly point of view, each of them was right. But from the Divine view nothing is right. When all the five get together it is right.

When you are united you can do as much work as you want. The Pandavas were united. Therefore they conquered many kingdoms. Unity is strength. We have to develop unity first. Worldly enjoyments are not important. Unity is most important. What is unity? It is not just getting together. It is realizing that all have equal rights. The Atma in you, is there in Me also. Ekam Sat Viprah Bahuda Vadanti (Truth is one, the wise refer to it in different ways). God alone exists and that Divine principle is present in everything. It is God who is doing everything, and He is the one who is getting everything done. He is the one who shows, as well as sees everything. God is the witness for all. The Pandavas always obeyed the Divine command. They followed the Divine command throughout their life. Hence they were victorious.

Give up Vices

Lord Krishna rescues his devotee Draupadi from being humiliated by the Kauravas
When Duryodhana was humiliating Draupadi, Dhritarashtra and all other elders were present there. Bhishma was also present there. Why did a person like Bhishma keep quiet when such a thing was happening? Draupadi was Agni’s own daughter. She knew the truth. She went running around and pleading for help. She then questioned Bhishma, “Did Dharmaja lose himself and then lose me or was it the other way round? First he lost himself and then he had gambled me. He had no right to keep me as a wager when he had already lost himself. What Dharmaja did was wrong. He lost the game, then he lost me. That is why I am subjected to this humility. I have five husbands. Did he take the consent of the other four husbands while keeping me as a wager? No.” It was over on this occasion that Dharmaja did something against Dharma. Because of his love for the game of dice he did it. Love for such hobbies masks the power of discrimination between good and bad. Because of such hobbies man commits grave mistakes.

King Dharmaraja losing the game of dice to Shakuni
The game of dice, anger and sadness are very bad. Never grieve over anything. Here is an example. Many people say that they are suffering so much. Where did this grief and suffering come from? Does sorrow have a body? Sorrow does not have any organs. How can a formless thing trouble you? It is your imagination. The sorrow is coming from within you. The good and bad of every person come from within. It is a reflection of your heart. It is not the reflection of the other person’s thoughts and heart. It is your reflection, reaction and resound. You are the one who is responsible for it, not God. You are able to recognise others’ faults, but you are not able to recognise your own faults. People have become blind and are not able to see the inner truth and the auspicious form of God.

Students are looking at the whole world. They also see what is happening around the world. Through science and technology they are able to see everything. But is man looking at himself after looking at everything else? No. Such education is useless. What is the use of such an education if you don’t look at yourself? First recognise your own mistakes. Recognize your good qualities. But you are recognizing everything else. Such a person is a blind person, worse than Dhritarashtra. It was Tyagaraja who said, “What is the use of the education and scholarship of a person, if he is a slave to his senses?”

What is all this education for? Is it just for becoming a slave of your senses? This type of education is ruining the country today. You may think that you are doing a great job. But what is your greatness? Greatness lies in recognizing and following the path of truth. Demonstrate it to others. But today’s man is not able to recognise all of this. You have to study, to know yourself. It is not just studying the books. Anybody can read books. You don’t need teachers also for such an education. The true education and books are within us.

The whole world is a great book. Man’s true friend is also there in this book. He is God. The permanent friend is God. He has been removed from man’s life. You are developing unnatural and false friendships, and finally becoming like monkeys. Not just a monkey, but a mad monkey. We should not become such mad monkeys with ‘monkey minds’. You should become ‘man-kind’. You must develop kindness. It is only then that you become a man. With such a monkey mind, if you say that you are a man, then even a monkey will laugh at you!

Source: Mahabharata: Divine Insights, Discourse 16, My Dear Students Volume 5, Divine Discourse at Trayee Brindavan on May 27, 2001.

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