22 Oct Saints of India (Satsang)
The topic for the Satsang on Sunday, 21st October, 2012 was Bharat ke Sant (Hindi) i.e. Saints of India.
Following is the transcript of the speech made by Dr. Jayadeva Yogendra and Smt. Hansaji Yogendra on the topic.
“You see, these kind of perceptions, they don’t happen usually. Seeing individuals who are experiencing difficulties in life and yet they are able to maintain their calm quiet state of mind and carry on with their work, this is a unique thing. We use these words like ‘Sant’ and ‘Mahatma’, sometimes these words are also misused, so we lose faith in these words. So the fact is that a person who can rise to this level and face situations, and yet carry on ones duties wholeheartedly, happily, is the right kind of person. Because in life, problems will come, there will be insurmountable difficulties. We have only one thing to do – carry on our work. Nothing other than that we can do; however much we cry and weep and think but we have limitations. We have two hands, two feet, and we have strength, and we have some things to do, so let us engage ourselves in the things we have to do and leave the other things away. I think this is a message, which will do each one of us a lot of good.”
When we talk of Saints, an inner strength develops because these are models that teach us how life should be lived. They are totally harmless people. Helping others is part of their nature. There is no Ahamkara (Ego) and so no anger, worry, etc. because all these are the outcome of ego. In place of ego, they have God.
The first chapter of the Yoga Sutras says – Citta Vritti Nirodha. Why should it be done? The next sutra says, Tada Drstuh Swaroope Avasthanam. Our trueSwaroop (Self) which is God-like is understood when the Citta Vrittis are stopped. The next sutra says Vritti Saroopyam Itaratra, which means that our attention can either be on the material world or on Isvar, not on both together.
We tend to try that. To improve business, we keep taking God’s name at work but in the mind we are thinking only of material gains and business. If a little serious attention is given to God for a while, a man can become better and do honest business and walk on the right path.
Saints are different. They see God in everything. “Zarre Zarre Mein Khuda Hai.” They don’t just say this, they feel and experience this. The ‘I’ sense is nowhere to be seen.
Once, a man invited a Saint for a meal to his house because he believed that with just the presence of such a person, problems of the house go away. So he forced the Saint to come visit. When the Saint reached there, the man was not there and the family did not know about it. They thought he was a beggar and told him to get out. So the Saint went and sat under a nearby tree. When the man returned home and saw the Saint, he invited him in and went to get some food. Again a family member entered and asked him to get out. This happened around four times but the Saint had no complaints. He remained there because the man had invited him and would feel bad if he did not stay. When the man found out about this, he felt very sad and said to the Saint, “Didn’t you feel bad at such an insult? You are great!” The Saint replied that he was not great, even a dog would behave the way he did. We can learn from animals. This is the perspective of a Saint.
Another example is of Allah Diya Khan, the Guru of the sitar player, Ravi Shankar. The Guru was to be felicitated and a lot of decoration was done. He was called at 6 pm and he reached there on time but there was no one there. The watchman did not allow him to enter as he was very simply dressed in a dhoti and he did not recognize him. When people started coming, he tried to enter again but the watchman still did not allow it so he went to the foot path opposite the gate and sat down on the ground. Later people came searching for him, found him and his only reply was, “What could I do? I tried entering twice but was not allowed.” Such a simple answer with no anger. A normal person would have reacted very differently, getting insulted and angry.
Such people have a very different outlook to life. Seeing beauty in everything, seeing God in everything and everyone, no ego or expectations, no anger or hatred, all these are qualities of a Saint.
Meerabai was asked to drink poison and she drank it but did not die because she was one with God, detached from the body. Life or death meant nothing to her. She began walking and visiting temples of Krsna. In one of them, she was stopped because ladies were not allowed in. She said that for her, the onlyPurusa is God and all the rest are women. The man who stopped her was wise and he let her in. In spirituality there is no man and woman, it is just a small physical difference. In Samkhya, Purusa Vishesh is considered the highest and the rest is Prakriti which is female. We have both in us.
When ever we are upset, sad or anxious, it is important to remember that these problems were faced even by Saints. In fact, Meerabai was given poison, whereas we would just be given a few bad words by someone. If they can remain in a wonderful state inspite of all that, why not try the same?
Accept the different personalities of people and don’t get sad. Remember these models and take inspiration from them. We just have to try.
Q & A
Q. Can Saints exist in today’s world?
Dr. Jayadeva: Saints will be there but we will have to search for them because there are too many wrong kind of people and false people around. So it is difficult to judge who is a true Saint and who is not.
Smt. Hansaji: It is definitely difficult to find out because they all look alike. In old times, Gods and Raksasas looked different so it was easy to identify them but now everyone looks alike, very lovely from outside but internally different. There are Saints now also and even good people, we just have to be careful. In any case, Saints are just models, we don’t have to go to them or worship them because every human has that purity within. Every human is potentially divine.
Q. When will our ego end?
Dr. Jayadeva: It will never end, not as long as we are alive.
Smt. Hansaji: Yoga is the path to follow to reduce ego. Just practice Ahimsaalone and you will see how much your ego reduces. Yamas help reduce ego but we have to work on ourselves, otherwise till we die, ego remains.
Q. If God is in everyone, then why was there fighting in Mahabharat?
Dr. Jayadeva: Well, these are questions only, we don’t know the answers.
Smt. Hansaji: Do you understand the word zero? If zero is removed from zero, it remains zero. If zero is added to zero, it remains zero. This is the whole point Krsna was making to Arjuna (in Bhagwad Gita) that you are killing but you can’t kill anybody. A soul cannot be killed. It is eternal, permanent. But Adharma had to be removed. Arjuna was a soldier and it was his duty to remove anyone who came inDharma’s way. This is why Mahabharat occurred.
Q. In a family life, where there is materialistic thinking, how can a saintly life be lived?
Dr. Jayadeva: We do not need to ask anyone to live a saintly life. Just keep doing the right thing. There is no need for a certificate for it.
Smt. Hansaji: All the Sainta that we are talking of were not considered Saints when they were alive. They had many threats. It is only now after 5-700 years that we consider them as Saints. A person should be good, should have a certain understanding and be on the path of spirituality if you want to handle problems with care. So let us be on that path.
Q. Is it true that with the blessing of a Guru or Saint, wealth showers upon us and there are no problems in life?
Dr. Jayadeva: See, Isvar Kripa (God’s blessings) is on all of us and on the Saint also. Saints have such qualities that they do right things and are later called Saints. Every person is a Saint but they do not do these things and so become normal people.
Smt. Hansaji: If you think that abundance of money removes all problems, you are mistaken. People with lots of money have different problems and people with little money have different problems, but problems are there. In life, pain and suffering keep coming. We don’t have to run away from problems, we just have to look at them from a different perspective so that we can live a good life.
Q. Is it possible to accept the life of a Saint leaving the family which is a reality?
Dr. Jayadeva: See, when a person reaches a certain state of understanding, the person considers that important. Gandhiji, like an ordinary man could have set up a business and looked after his wife. He took up another work – good of the people, trying to bring independence to India and may have neglected the care of his children, but he did more work this way in bringing independence to India.
Smt. Hansaji: Actually Saints are not leaving their families. They are living in the world but are detached from it. There is no ‘I’ or ‘Mine’ and so there is no ‘My family.’ The whole world becomes their family. They are beyond that. We should understand them as they are.
Q. My wife has too much blind faith and I don’t. What to do?
Dr. Jayadeva: Since you have married her, you have to accept her.
Smt. Hansaji: Live and let live. Let her have blind faith. If she forces you to do some ritual, do it, what’s the harm? After all, you have to live together.
Q. Even after being very careful in business, I keep getting loss. What to do?
Dr. Jayadeva: Now it won’t happen.
Smt. Hansaji: Why not believe that? Keep doing your work and maybe what you think is a loss may not really be so. A man who did not earn much money had a family that had good habits and which worked together, united. Sometimes there is a lot of money but no such thing as a family. So there might be loss on one side but gain somewhere else. Do not see from your angle. Keep doing your work and believe that what happens happens for the good.
Q. What is the first step towards becoming a Saint?
Dr. Jayadeva: There is no step at all.
Smt. Hansaji: Saints do not need organized systematic steps. But follow the path of yoga, of spirituality and that will come to you on the way.
Satsang is an open meeting held every Sunday from 9:30 to 10:30 am at The Yoga Institute, Santacruz East, Mumbai. It involves an interesting presentation to the public, made by the students of the Teacher Training Course. Each week, a new presentation of a Yogic concept is made in a simple way through skits and decoration for the general public, followed by a short speech from our Gurus, Dr. Jayadeva and Smt. Hansaji Yogendra.