Thursday, December 31, 2015

A Call to the Youth – Shri Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari

So the message I have to give is nothing very important, nothing very earth shaking, you know, nothing very profound, nothing very philosophical. It is the same call in the Vedas you see, “Uttishtatha, jaagratha, praapyavaraan nibodhata.” [Awake, Arise, having approached the Chosen One, realise your goal.] Youth must awake. Youth must realise that it is the root of society – roots – and that unless each root is nourished properly, one part of the tree will go; and that tree is our life – total life, including all of creation. Therefore the Gita also speaks of “urdhvamoolam madashaakham ashvattham praahuravyayam” – our tree is an inverted ashvattha holy fig tree. Roots are there above and the branches are here below. No use watering this. The nourishment must come from above. What is above and what is below? Above means the higher world, the higher thoughts, teachings which we have lost, forgotten, deliberately set aside. Go back to that.

(Talk given by Chariji Maharaj: Youth: A Time of Promise and for Effort, ‘Throwing off the Shackles of the Past’, Volume II, p. 243)

Chariji Maharaj, the Master of Sahaj Marg, has quoted this call of the Vedas many times. Even Swami Vivekananda has used this famous quotation, which originally is from the Kathopanishad text. This call is not just for the youth but it is for all of us. In order for one to pursue anything in life, it is necessary to be both arisen and also awake. Having said that, what is the next thing to do? It is to “Rest not, Stop not, till the goal is achieved”.

Now, what is the goal? The goal is nothing but self-perfection, inner excellence, manifesting the self within, there are so many ways of looking at the one and the same goal. The current president of Shri Ram Chandra Mission (SRCM) Shri Kamlesh D Patel has demystified the various definitions of goal by saying that the very purpose of existence is to simply excel in whatever one does. And then he said that this excellence of perfection is oriented towards the inner self, inner perfection. It is for us to listen to these clarion calls and act accordingly. 

Monday, December 28, 2015

Food – through the Sahaj Marg Lens: Dr. Kannan

Many people are not serious about the consequences of eating at random. It not only affects the body but also the psychological, intellectual and spiritual progress of a person.  That is why Vedas, Upanishads,  Bhagavad Gita and many texts on Yoga, especially Hatha Yoga and also Ayurveda emphasise the need for proper diet.

The CHANDOGYA UPANISHAD, for example says that purity of food is essential for one's conduct and also good memory. The TAITTIRIYA UPANISHAD mentions about the importance of food.

In Bhagavad Gita,  Lord Krishna categorises Food into three varieties,  viz. SATTVA, RAJAS and TAMAS and names some food varieties under each category.

The SATTVIK food gives happiness, it is pleasing, lighter, makes one’s mind calm and nourishes the body and gives long life.

The RAJASIK food gives vigour, virility and induces one to indulge in action and promotes desire.

The TAMASIK food is generally not recommended as it makes one dull, lazy and sluggish.

The text on HATHA YOGA gives the list of food, vegetables, fruits etc., which have to be partaken and those to be avoided. It applies to people of different strata.

Apart from the quality of food, the quantity is also important.  The proper moderate diet is: one should fill half the stomach with SATTVIK food, one quarter with water and leave the rest quarter empty for the movement of air. This is known as Mitaahaara.

Lord Krishna says that one should have moderation in food, sleep and activities. I asked Rev. Chariji Maharaj about the importance of food.  He told me that it is important as one progresses in spirituality. He gave the wonderful example of using Petrol for the bikes and cars, but the same cannot be used for aeroplane.

Rev. Babuji Maharaj says in the 8th Maxim that the food should be earned with honest means and should be taken in the remembrance of God. In the book, EFFICACY OF RAJA YOGA IN THE LIGHT OF SAHAJ MARG, he says that if the food is prepared in divine consciousness or in the remembrance of God and partaken in the same condition,  it would remove spiritual diseases.

Rev. Lalaji Maharaj summarises entire mode of life in just two words, which include Food also: Balance and Moderation.

It is really wonderful to see Rev. Master, Shri Kamlesh D Patel, President of Shri Ram Chandra Mission also gives importance to this aspect of Food in spirituality. He has talked about how different types of food affects the consciousness. In one of Kamleshji's recent talks, he has quoted this, "Someone asked Babuji if they could eat non-vegetarian food. Babuji said, ‘I allow you to eat it until you can stop it by yourself.’ What a profound answer you see!" And then, Shri Kamlesh D Patel went on to explain further that it is a matter of the subtle bodies. Anything that can harm and hurt creates vibrations and when we consume such food, such vibrations will have an impact on our consciousness. 

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Fear: Swami Vivekananda and Chariji

"Once when I was in Varanasi, I was passing through a place where there was a large tank of water on one side and a high wall on the other. It was in the grounds where there were many monkeys. The monkeys of Varanasi are huge brutes and are sometimes surly. They now took it into their heads not to allow me to pass through their street, so they howled and shrieked and clutched at my feet as I passed. As they pressed closer, I began to run, but the faster I ran, the faster came the monkeys and they began to bite at me. It seemed impossible to escape, but just then I met a stranger who called out to me, "Face the brutes." I turned and faced the monkeys, and they fell back and finally fled. That is a lesson for all life--face the terrible, face it boldly. Like the monkeys, the hardships of life fall back when we cease to flee before them. If we are ever to gain freedom, it must be by conquering nature, never by running away. Cowards never win victories. We have to fight fear and troubles and ignorance if we expect them to flee before us." - Swami Vivekananda

On the topic of  Fear, Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari, the spiritual Master of Sahaj Marg system of Yoga says, "Forget your Fear. When you forget your fear, there is nothing to be afraid of". During one of Chariji Maharaj's regular walks,  he mentioned, "I admire two personalities for their fearlessness. One My Master Babuji Maharaj and the other Swami Vivekananda".

About Shri Kamlesh D Patel: Sahaj Marg Articles from SRCM

About Shri Kamlesh D Patel: Sahaj Marg Articles from SRCM: Shri Kamlesh D Patel is the President of Shri Ram Chandra Mission (SRCM) and the Spiritual Master of the Sahaj Marg system of Raja Yoga...

Friday, December 25, 2015

Inner Perfection: Kamlesh D. Patel

Inner Perfection

We are moving towards perfection. Perfection in what? Not in our outer look or fancies or other stuff. It is the perfection in our inner balance, our inner flawless character, and our manners.
Taken from the book "Designing Destiny (2nd edn., 2015)", Chapter "Our Collective Destiny", pg. 166, by Kamlesh D. Patel

In one other talk, the SRCM President, Shri. Kamlesh D. Patel mentioned that life itself is given to us to orient towards perfection and excel in anything that we may do, and here he clarifies that perfection is about Inner Perfection and goes on to add the inherent need for Balance, Character and Behaviour in order to achieve this. The Sahaj Marg system of Raja Yoga meditation provides all the tools necessary to proceed along these lines and work tirelessly towards achieving this Inner Perfection. The spiritual Master of this system of Sahaj Marg, Shri. Kamlesh D. Patel, using the unique concept of Transmission assists the aspirants in achieving this perfection. 

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

My Vision: Chariji Maharaj

So, the way the world is going, there is a need for a visionary who will hold to that delicate thread of the essentials of what constitutes life.... You see how a vision grows, and how in its essentiality it is just an atomic, basic atom of a thought.... Be brave and think.... Have we the courage to do that? You can have it if you aude sapere – dare to think. Dare to think, ‘What is this guy talking about vision?’– and then you will find out.... My vision is to make you all visionaries.

—P. Rajagopalachari, HeartSpeak 2011, 1st edn., 2012

I remember this talk very well. Chariji Maharaj came to the dorm in Manapakkam Ashram, Shri Ram Chandra Mission, to address a team of functionaries who were getting prepared to attend an upcoming seminar. The person who was organizing this seminar requested Master, Chariji Maharaj to give a talk, and when Master asked for the topic, he said, we want to know about your vision. Master replied, “My vision is to make you all visionaries”. He gave the talk and left, and we were all astounded, could not move, the impact of the sitting and the talk being so profound. It was a life-changing moment for me.