March 7, 1993
Bhagavan signalled for all the boys to come to the front and sit. Once there, all the boys prayed that Swami bless the hostel with a visit.
Swami : You are now going to have your exams. Why do you want to have this programme now? But the boys persisted. Then, Swami called an elderly devotee and told him that the boys were praying that Swami should come to the hostel.
Devotee : Boys, you are now having exams, and it will not be right for Swami to come to the hostel now. Anyway, you must develop the feeling that Swami is with you wherever you are. Bhagavan stopped him here and asked him…
Swami : These boys want to know that if you have already developed that feeling, then why have you come here at all? (There was mild laughter at Swami's comment)
Devotee : Swami, what I meant was that I discharge my responsibilities wherever I am, with the full knowledge that Swami is in my heart.
Swami : Is Swami in your heart or are you in Swami? If I am holding this kerchief in My hand, My hand is bigger than the kerchief. In the same way, if I am in your heart you are big and I am small. (The elderly person saw the point as all the boys again burst into laughter.) Yes, Duty is very important. Today the X class boys had a couple of questions that are out of syllabus. None of the boys could write that answer. But then, this will be the same case at all other examination centres too! Our boys got worried.
Devotee : Swami, our boys do not panic. They have Swami’s blessings.
Swami : Yes. (To the students)What is the meaning of Awareness?
Swami then summoned the teacher who taught that course and asked him the meaning.
Teacher : Swami, it is total knowledge. It is to be aware of everything about a situation and behave in the right way, in the right time, at the right place, in the right circumstances.
Swami : Yes it is to concentrate on the Absolute always. Are you concentrating? No one can really concentrate on one’s work, not even in Dhyana, though one may claim to do so. It is only in doing some work that one may concentrate. Awareness is Truth. It is not the ‘truth’ that is referred to in the worldly sense. That ‘truth’ is only ‘half-truth’. The Absolute Truth is changeless and is beyond the mind.
Student : Swami, how do we then end this mind so that, we may realise that Absolute Truth?
Swami : The mind has no end. It will be there with you throughout and will end only when your life ends.
Student : Swami, in this world, must we concentrate on that Absolute Truth and ‘half-truth’?
Swami : Real Truth is not there at all in the world. It is beyond the mind. To get to that state, one must still the mind - make it changeless. What is there in the world is only the transcendental truth - also called ‘half-truth’. This is also called ‘Ruta’, ‘Mithya’, ‘Nijam’ or ‘Sadasat’. For example, a Brahmin who cooks is called a ‘cook-Brahmin’. One who does Poojas is called a ‘Poojari-Brahmin’ and so on, though a Brahmin is still a Brahmin. It has been said, ‘Brahma Satyam, Jagat Mithya.’ This Mithya is Sadasat and is neither the truth nor falsehood. It varies with the situation. It is not absolute. The Absolute Truth is Brahman and it is beyond the mind and senses.
Student : Swami, how to arrive at this changelessness of the mind that you have just mentioned?
Swami : This state can be arrived at by thinking that everything is God. God and society are not separate entities. Both good and bad must be viewed as God only.
Student : Swami, how to see God in everything?
Swami : God is always there. You cannot catch the wind or smell or touch it either. Can you then deny that wind exists? In a similar way, though you cannot touch or feel God, you must not deny God’s existence. He is there everywhere.
Student : Swami, who is a true devotee?
Swami : In My view, there must not be anyone called a devotee. All are one. There is no God, no disciple, no master and no devotee. All are one. I AM I. If you say ‘He is Master, I am disciple’, you are seeing two individuals. You must believe that all are one.
Student : Swami, how to come over this delusion of ‘I am the body’?
When Jesus Christ was being crucified, He found some devotees hurling abuses at those they felt were responsible for their Master’s agony. Jesus called them and said, "All are alike My son. Be alike to everyone.” Life and death are like dresses to this body. When you give your clothes to the dhobi for washing, do you cry? So why think so much about the body? This is called Mimamsa in Vedanta. It means constant enquiry. Who am I? I am not the body; I am not the senses; I am not the mind; ‘I am I’. Mind and senses are only servants. You are the Master.
Student : Swami, how to purify ourselves?
Swami : Do Good, See Good, Be Good. That will help you purify yourself, and enquire about your True Self.
Student : Is it an internal enquiry?
Swami : Yes, it is. Outside enquiry is only by mind and senses. It is useless. Don’t follow the body. It is like a water bubble. Don’t follow the mind. It is a mad monkey. Follow the Conscience. That is, B-Being + A-Awareness + B-Bliss + A-Atma. [Sat] + [Chit] + [Ananda] + [Atma] = BABA
Student : Swami, several times, we pray. We are apparently satisfied. But our prayers go unanswered. Should we take it as something wrong with our method of prayer?
Swami : Prayer is itself a wrong word to use. “Be in Atma. Live in Atma. ”
Devotee : Swami, this is all a very high state…
Swami : Yes that is why you must start with that goal in mind now itself. Will you say, Oh! Delhi is so far away, I cannot go, and quit going? Start early with the goal in view. That is what is meant by ‘Aim high. Low aim is crime.’ In Telugu, there is an idiom which says, ‘‘It is better to aim at a tiger and miss rather than chase and hit a lame jackal.’’ You must aim for a 90% or 80% and then write your exam, If not 100%. Then your results will be high. But if you aim for just pass marks of 30% or 40% your results will be even lower. You must hence aim high.
Student : Swami, we are enquiring… (Swami interrupted him and said…)
Swami : What are you enquiring? You are only contemplating. First ask yourself, who am I? The answer comes instantaneously, from within—that you are the Atma and not the body, mind or senses. Vedanta is very easy to follow. It gives a simple solution. Hold a hanky, and it remains in your hand. Leave it and it drops down at once. This is the essence of all Vedanta - namely, Vairagya also called detachment. If you have ₹10,000 with you, you are assaulted by worries. Deposit it with the bank and your problems are solved. You feel relieved. In the same way, Vairagya means total surrender to God. Give up everything to God. He will then take care of everything.
Source: Students with Sai: Conversations (1991-2000)
Source: Students with Sai: Conversations (1991-2000)