Indescribable Presence – Flowers For The Soul

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Hibiscus

 

 

“God is without form, without quality as well as with form and quality.
Watch and see with what endless variety of beautiful forms
He plays the play of his maya with Himself alone.
The lila of the all pervading One goes on and on in this way in infinite diversity.
He is without beginning and without end.
He is the whole and also the part.
The whole and part together make up real Perfection.”

Sri Anandamayi Ma

 

All photos taken with a Lumix XL7 camera on macro setting. Click on each image to enlarge for details. thanks.

 

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Divine Mother,  “When flowers are brought to you, how do you give them a significance?
By entering into contact with the nature of the flower, its inner truth. Then one knows what it represents. ( The Divine Mother, from her timeless words on nature and flowers. Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry, India.)

Gentle and lovely, flowers share their beauty with us and bring us a touch of eternal things. According to the Mother, each variety of flower has its own special quality and meaning. By establishing an inner contact with the flower, this meaning can be known. “Flowers speak to us when we know how to listen to them,” The Mother said. “It is a subtle and fragrant language.” As if to provide a key to this language. She identified the significances of almost nine hundred flowers.

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“It is intended by the word Presence to indicate the sense and perception of the Divine as a Being, felt as present in one’s existence and consciousness or in relation with it, without the necessity of any further qualification or description. Thus, of the “ineffable Presence” it can only be said that it is there and nothing more can or need be said about it, although at the same time one knows that all is there, personality and impersonality, Power and Light and Ananda and everything else, and that all these flow from that indescribable Presence. That is always the fundamental significance, — the essential perception of the essential Presence supporting everything else.” ~ SRI AUROBINDO

 

the Rose from the window box - today

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Touched By Love – Sai Baba Memories

looking out over the darshan area, from the Mandir

 

‘At first, name and form are essential, that is the reason why Avatars come, so that God can be loved, adored, worshiped, listened to and followed, and finally realized as nameless and formless.’ – Baba

 


After the physical passing of Sai Baba during April 2011, darshan experiences are no different from those experienced when he was alive.  In other words, the vibrations can still be felt. One might say that Sai Baba has not gone anywhere. Long ago, I remember reading a particularly beautiful story about Sri Ramana Maharshi. Ramana told one distraught devotee not to worry about his imminent demise, for he (Ramana) was not going anywhere. He had no place to go to that He was not already there! Ramana would remain available to all who sought darshan and solace in his ashram. So it is, I now believe, the same with Sathya Sai Baba.  Here is a short story from Diana Baskin who tells us that Swami told her just before his demise these few words: I am not going anywhere.

 

 
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‘I am not going anywhere.’ –

Why would Swami tell Diana Baskin these few words, I believe without a doubt he was telling her that he would always be available to those who were dedicated to him. He also was giving a broader message, his vibration and his essence would always be there in Puttaparthi.

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Swami, the Heart Core of our Life

Swami became my Guru when I first came to India in 1969, taking on the task of teaching me the principles of a spiritual life by building a solid foundation rooted in Dharma. Later, He became my Mother, taking over the task of nurturing, acceptance and unconditional love. Finally in 1979, Swami took the role of Father by introducing me to my husband, Robert, performing our marriage ceremony and extending His strong hand of support and gentle loving guidance throughout our marriage.

Swami was the heart core of our life. For the past 40 years, our life centred solely upon Him, and the anticipation of our trips to India that brought us in His physical presence was our nourishment. My husband and I were devastated and heartbroken as we lost all at once our Guru, our Mother and our Father.

But Swami did not teach us to be weaklings and even in the midst of sorrow His teachings rushed to my side, giving me strength and support while gently reminding me that there was a limit to everything.

When the husband of our friend died, Swami said to her that she could mourn his death but only for a short time; after that, she needed to let go of her sorrow. Last Words of Swami

I understood intellectually that to honour Swami and His teachings, I needed to put them into practice, be a master of my emotions and keep my focus on positive and constructive thoughts. While this helped to some extent, it was not enough. I longed to re-establish the direct heart-to-heart link with Swami that gives joy to life.

Swami had not only foreseen the problem I would encounter but in His infinite compassion had given the solution, unbeknownst to me, shortly before leaving His physical body.

One morning, after Bhajans as Swami was returning to His residence, His car stopped in front of me and as the driver lowered the window, Swami motioned for me to come forward. His voice was very faint and I had to lean into the car and read His lips to grasp His words. At the end of our brief conversation, He said something so unusual and out of context that I had to ask Him to repeat it. These were the last words Swami ever spoke to me.

For the year that followed, I pondered His words and questioned their meaning but failed to find the reason why He voiced them at that time nor could I find any sort of veiled connotation they might imply. It was not until a few weeks after Swami passed, in the midst of great sorrow and mourning that like a thunderbolt from the heavens it hit me! Not only did I understand what He meant from the deeper perspective of Advaita but a mere remembrance had the power to re-establish the precious heart-to-heart link and fill my heart with love. The powerful words of truth, love and wisdom. “I am not going anywhere.”

source of Diana Baskin’s story -Sanathana Sarathi

No Death, No Fear – Spirituality

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NO DEATH, NO FEAR

…The day my mother died, I wrote in my journal, “A serious misfortune of my life has arrived.” I suffered for more than one year after the passing away of my mother. But one night, in the highlands of Vietnam, I was sleeping in the hut in my hermitage. I dreamed of my mother. I saw myself sitting with her, and we were having a wonderful talk. She looked young and beautiful, her hair flowing down. It was so pleasant to sit there and talk to her as if she had never died. When I woke up it was about two in the morning, and I felt very strongly that I had never lost my mother. The impression that my mother was still with me was very clear. I understood then that the idea of having lost my mother was just an idea. It was obvious in that moment that my mother is always alive in me.

l opened the door and went outside. The entire hillside was bathed in moonlight. It was a hill covered with tea plants. And my hut was set behind the temple halfway up. Walking slowly in the moonlight through the rows of tea plants, I noticed my mother was still with me. She was the moonlight caressing me as she had done so often, very tender, very sweet… wonderful! Each time my feet touched the earth I knew my mother was there with me. I knew this body was not mine alone but a living continuation of my mother and my father and my grandparents and great-grandparents. Of all my ancestors. These feet that I saw as “my” feet were actually “our” feet. Together my mother and I were leaving footprints in the damp soil.

From that moment on, the idea that I had lost my mother no longer existed. All I had to do was look at the palm of my hand, feel the breeze on my face or the earth under my feet to remember that my mother is always with me, available at any time…

~ Thich Nhat Hanh

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Goddess Earth – Inspirational Quotations

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Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh, one of the world’s leading spiritual teachers, is a man at great peace even as he predicts the possible collapse of civilisation within 100 years as a result of runaway climate change.

The 86-year-old Vietnamese monk, who has hundreds of thousands of followers around the world, believes the reason most people are not responding to the threat of global warming, despite overwhelming scientific evidence, is that they are unable to save themselves from their own personal suffering, never mind worry about the plight of Mother Earth.

Thay, as he is known, says it is possible to be at peace if you pierce through our false reality, which is based on the idea of life and death, to touch the ultimate dimension in Buddhist thinking, in which energy cannot be created or destroyed.

By recognising the inter-connectedness of all life, we can move beyond the idea that we are separate selves and expand our compassion and love in such a way that we take action to protect the Earth.

 

 

Look beyond fear

In Thay’s new book,  “Fear” he writes about how people spend much of their lives worrying about getting ill, ageing and losing the things they treasure most, despite the obvious fact that one day they will have to let them all go.

When we understand that we are more than our physical bodies, that we didn’t come from nothingness and will not disappear into nothingness, we are liberated from fear, he says; fearlessness is not only possible but the ultimate joy.

“Our perception of time may help,” Thay told me in his modest home in Plum Village monastery near Bordeaux. “For us it is very alarming and urgent, but for Mother Earth, if she suffers she knows she has the power to heal herself even if it takes 100m years. We think our time on earth is only 100 years, which is why we are impatient. The collective karma and ignorance of our race, the collective anger and violence will lead to our destruction and we have to learn to accept that.

“And maybe Mother Earth will produce a great being sometime in the next decade … We don’t know and we cannot predict. Mother Earth is very talented. She has produced Buddhas, bodhisattvas, great beings.

“So take refuge in Mother Earth and surrender to her and ask her to heal us, to help us. And we have to accept that the worst can happen; that most of us will die as a species and many other species will die also and Mother Earth will be capable after maybe a few million years to bring us out again and this time wiser.”

 

Excerpted from the Guardian On Line with thanks

 

Amazing photos of our beautiful home, Earth.

 

 

Sacred Feminine, the Matrix Of Creation

Youtube, I created this for today’s post.  (Eric Clapton’s rather sweet song  ~ In the sun, the rain, the snow, Love is lovely, let it grow.) enjoy! 🙂

 


I believe I can never reach spiritual bliss – “anand”- without a deep understanding of the ‘Divine feminine’. The Divine Feminine has been put on the back burner for eons now. We’ve swept her away, like dust under the carpet. Yet, the Sacred Feminine requires all of us to come into acceptance of ourselves as we exist and breathe in Our Mother. In as much as we are able to realize that we are her daughters and sons, we realize we are becoming her. She has been and is known by many names and by no name at all. In many cultures and within our own intuitive heart centers, she abides. For most of us, our love of her knows no bounds and is teeming with gratefulness for her many gifts, she has given us and continues to impart to us on a daily basis. Both sacred and mundane, she reminds us that nothing is separate or apart from her, because absolutely everything is in her. This divine feminine is compassionate, courageous, and humble. She  is not reigned over by the five vices – lust, anger, greed, emotional attachment, and ego – but is in control of them. She already exists in men and women, but now we need to tap into her universal femininity.

I often use flowers as a way of connecting with the Inner Feminine, for her spirit is very much in nature. The flower garden is a constant reminder of how bountiful and Sacred She is.

http://whenthesoulawakens.org/the-divine-feminine_275.html

 Image from Face Book

Image from Face Book

 THE MATRIX OF CREATION

By Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

 The feminine is the matrix of creation.  This truth is something profound and elemental, and every woman knows it in the cells of her body, in her instinctual depths.  Out of the substance of her very being life comes forth.  She can conceive and give birth, participate in the greatest mystery of bringing a soul into life.  And yet we have forgotten, or been denied, the depths of this mystery, of how the divine light of the soul creates a body in the womb of a woman, and how the mother shares in this wonder, giving her own blood, her own body, to what will be born.  Our culture’s focus on a disembodied, transcendent God has left women bereft, denying them the sacredness of this simple mystery of divine love.

What we do not realize is that this patriarchal denial affects not only every woman, but also life itself.  When we deny the divine mystery of the feminine we also deny something fundamental to life.  We separate life from its sacred core, from the matrix that nourishes all of creation.  We cut our world off from the source that alone can heal, nourish and transform it.  The same sacred source that gave birth to each of us is needed to give meaning to our life, to nourish it with what is real, and to reveal to us the mystery, the divine purpose to being alive.

Because humanity has a central function in the whole of creation, what we deny to ourself we deny to all of life.  In denying the feminine her sacred power and purpose we have impoverished life in ways we do not understand.  We have denied life its sacred source of meaning and divine purpose, which was understood by the ancient priestesses.  We may think that their fertility rites and other ceremonies belonged only to the need for procreation or a successful harvest.  In our contemporary culture we cannot understand how a deeper mystery was enacted, one that consciously connected life to its source in the inner worlds, a source that held the wholeness of life as an embodiment of the divine, allowing the wonder of the divine to be present in every moment.

The days of the priestesses, their temples and ceremonies are over, and because the wisdom of the feminine was not written down but transmitted orally (logos is a masculine principle), this sacred knowledge is lost.  We cannot reclaim the past, but we can witness a world without her presence, a world which we exploit for greed and power, which we rape and pollute without real concern.  And then we can begin the work of welcoming her back, of reconnecting with the divine that is at the core of creation, and learning once again how to work with the sacred principles of life.  Without the intercession of the divine feminine we will remain in this physical and spiritual wasteland we have created, passing on to our children a diseased and desecrated world.

The choice is simple.  Can we remember the wholeness that is within us, the wholeness that unites spirit and matter?  Or will we continue walking down this road that has abandoned the divine feminine, that has cut women off from their sacred power and knowledge?  If we choose the former we can begin to reclaim the world, not with masculine plans, but with the wisdom of the feminine, the wisdom that belongs to life itself.  If we choose the latter we may attempt some surface solutions with new technology.  We may combat global warming and pollution with scientific plans.  But there will be no real change.  A world that is not connected to its soul cannot heal.  Without the participation of the divine feminine nothing new can be born.

 


The Apprentice Angel and Jean – Myths & Legends

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A long time ago story about a young girl near to death. The story is  poignant in as much as it tells of an apprentice angel whose duty it is to accompany Jean to Heaven. Jean doesn’t mind going with the angel as she has strong faith in God. Still, she first wants to see her mother one more time. I wrote this story twenty years ago. Only found it in my files tonight. I am posting due to bad weather that  will keep me awake tonight. Better to sit here and share my memories. Will sleep tomorrow. 🙂

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Jean lay desperately ill in a hospital bed. She had suffered a severe
head wound which had left her totally blind and very ill. She had
heard the doctors discussing her fate with her parents, that the
prognosis was not good.

Afterwards, her mother had sat beside her on the bed and squeezed both
of her hands. Jean could feel her trembling as she tried to restrain
her tears, but in the end her mother had completely broken down.

“Mum don’t cry, I am not afraid to die,” she whispered.

Her mother stroked Jean’s face and kissed her cheek. She couldn’t find
any words to comfort her daughter. She continued instead to caress her
lovely child. Jean could smell her perfume, a soft flowery smell of
Orchid essence. The smell comforted her greatly.
Jean was very tired and the medicine made her feel ill and listless.
After her parents had left, she fell asleep.

Everyday, her parents and other relatives visited her, sometimes
staying long hours. The saddest thing for Jean was that she couldn’t
see their faces. Her mother had a lovely face, and she longed to see
it once more before she died. She tried to visualise her features but
this got harder to do as the days went by.

It was late at night and Jean was listening to the nurses talking in
the corridor. But suddenly Jean felt very weary and noticed that the
nurses voices began drifting further and further away. Jean knew her
time had come and she fell into a final slumber.

Suddenly she became aware of a bright golden light filling the room.
She wondered how it was she could see again, when a small angelic
child stood before her.

“Hello Jean. Come, it’s time to go.”

Jean felt warm and peaceful and well. The terrible pains had
disappeared, and she felt lighter than air.

“Go where?” she said sleepily.

“To heaven,” said the little angel, holding out his hand.

Something jerked hard inside of Jean, “No” she said, with a start.

“What?” the angel said in surprise at this unexpected turn of events.
“Did you say no!”

This was the angel’s first important job and the last thing he wanted
was for something to go wrong, and here it was going wrong!

“No! ~ no you don’t understand. Your time is now and you must come with
me. Wonderful things are waiting for you.” He watched to see if his
coaxing had worked.

“No,” said Jean, “I want to see my mother just one more time. I want
to see her face. I can’t remember what she looks like.”

“But you can’t, Jean. You have to come now. I can’t go back without
you. I’m not allowed.”

“I’m not going with you until I’ve seen my mother’s face, and I mean
it!” Jean shouted, as she tried to pull herself back into her heavy
body, but for some reason, she couldn’t.

“I want to go back now!” Jean demanded. “Put me back!”

“I can’t, Jean, it is not up to me. I’m only here to guide you home to
heaven. I don’t know anything about this kind of stuff. They told me
it was a simple job because you were ready.”

Jean felt sorry for the poor angel, because angels do not lie, and
being a Messenger for God was no easy task, especially for a young and
inexperienced angel.

Nevertheless Jean didn’t want to go, before seeing her mother’s face
just one last time. She tried to explain to the angel how beautiful
her mother was and how much she loved her. She knew she had to die,
but, oh, just to see her one last time, just once more, then she would
be happy to go to heaven.

The compassionate angel listened with understanding to Jean’s plea,
but explained  he could not do anything to change the rules. Because
the rules were God’s rules, not his.

..
Jean stood next to her body on the bed. Everything around her was
shadowy and whispery except for the beautiful angel, and from the
deepest part of her being she cried, “Please!”

Never had the angel felt such a word, it came from Jean’s soul,
powerful and urgent. It was born from a love so strong that a thousand
angels voices grew weak by its urgency.


Suddenly, from the light came a tall and wondrous figure of a man, one
who knew all things, one who knew what is was to be a child. He spoke
and his voice was like liquid sunshine and he said,

“Your plea will not go unanswered, Jean, for when one looks upon the
love between a child and mother, one is truly in the presence of God.”

He placed his hands upon the child’s eyes and said,

“Sleep my child and lay your burdens upon me this night, for too much
is this for one so young to carry.”

The next morning Jean awoke to  look into the eyes of her mother
and she was even more beautiful than she had remembered. Everyone in
the hospital called it a miracle. She had never felt so happy in all
her life and that night when Jean went to sleep, the little angel came
and took her home…

-Retold by “moi”

“Mother” – Inspirational Quotations and Poems

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“If with deep faith, devotion and love you can exclaim: ‘Mother, come to me, I cannot pass my days without you’, rest assured, the Universal Mother will spread out Her arms and clasp you to Her heart. Don’t look up to Her only as a mysterious refuge in your hour of distress. Keep
in mind, She is always very, very near as the Force that guides your life. She Herself is the supreme refuge of every sentient being. With this conviction proceed. She will take the brunt of your burdens from your shoulders and make them light.”

– Sri Anandamayi Ma

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Blissful Mother – Inspirational Quotations, New Year’s Updates Prashanthi

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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.  

temple3I 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….

Sai Ram