The Essential Sri Anandamayi Ma
by Alexander Lipski
an excerpt from the book I am reading just now….
Since Anandamaya Ma urges man to start upon the return trip to the Divine One, does she imply that man has free will successfully to undertake the journey by his own efforts?
As we well know, theologians across the centuries have disputed this thorny question. She makes it clear that there is a subtle interrelationship between free will and grace, free will being, in the ultimate sense, a part of grace, as contradictory as this may sound, and thus She states:
“Verily, everything in the world is achieved by will-power. If, by determination and patience, someone can translate his highest ideals into life, his actions will be inspired. Such a worker is backed by divine power.”
As long as we are in ignorance, we are seemingly free in minor matters only. Our weaknesses, our inadequacies bind us. We are the slaves of our moods, cravings and impulses and our old thinking patterns. If we have had fame or a fortune etc., we will cling to this, no matter what, until we discover that these old thought patterns of past karmas are a hinderance to us. All our unresolved problems from the past should be met with courge and overcome. This will allow us to continue on our spiritual journey. Any weaknesses or refusal to deal with our karmas will result in failure. Thus, a strong will power is essential on the spiritual path…
Anandamayi Ma likens the average man’s freedom to that of a cow which is tied by a rope to a post. Within the limits of the rope she (the cow) has freedom. But, of course, were the cow able to break loose from the rope, she would gain complete freedom. Similarly, the person who makes the right spiritual efforts can cut the finite world of pseudo-happiness and attain freedom.
Might add this is New Year’s Eve in Puttaparthi… Could be Bombay or London. (smile) – So few people for the morning bhajans and vedas, but so many out eating in restaurants and doing all the partying stuff. I really cannot understand why these folks, when given the chance to lap up the many blessings here in Puttaparthi at the moment, don’t take more advantge of it. But folks, that’s the way it goes. I did notice this doesn’t happen at ‘Krishna Consciousness’ Centres and temples – perhaps because they make their own food… 🙂
Will be hopefully offering more positive reports in the upcoming days….
New Year’s day update:
Happy New Year to one and all… Very nice darshan this morning. The Hall was only half-full until 9 a.m. The VIPs were few in number today but Baba’s family came to enjoy the concert. They sit opposite to where I sit on the ledge beside the chair ladies. The boy’s brass band gave a short concert of interesting music. They actually played very well and kudos to them for their choice of tunes….. (popular 1930’s blues music… ) Now everyone is off for the New Year lunch/brunch and once more Puttparthi is thrown into chaos. I had an appointment with the massage ladies and spent my time relaxing and taking a steam bath. Hopefully, the massages will help relieve my 18 month bout of tendonitis in my knee.
I want to mention again the decorations in the hall are still up and dancing in the breeze. Today they added even more pretty ones all around the Samadhi – a really colourful selection of joyous colours and shapes that took my eye. We were able to watch the morning activities from the large video screen on the ladies side.
I will be posting later on next week on morning darshans. This is the time when I feel the best vibes are in the hall. The peace and quiet reminds me of days of old when Baba used to come out from the temple and be with us. Yes, for me anyway, the mornings, here right now, are a good reminder of those far off days.
Also will be doing a New Years report on all those ‘famous’ or well known devotees who have generously shared their videos and books with us over the years. Sometimes too generously but there you go, we can forgive that… 🙂 Many of them are now Old-Age Pensioners and some have already left for the celestial planes. So I feel it’s time to take a short walk down Memory Lane “Sai Wise”…. There is no one quite like George Harrison, who was a Krishna Consciousness devotee, to add to our list, but none-the-less, we have a few goodies. I will probably start with Al Drucker, who is my all-time favourite early devotee. His erudite writings are a joy to read and have inspired many. Now he resides in Florida in the USA and has been heavily involved with the the teachings of The Course In Miracles. – Well more later….