With the passing of Sathya Sai Baba, the pleasure of remembering those early days has been taken from me, because there is no longer anyone to remember with. Those ashram days are all but over for most of us that visited. It feels like losing my co-rememberer and like losing the memory itself, as if the things we’d done, back then, were less real and important to what the day holds for us now. I began the blog with my memories of Sathya Sai Baba, taking notes from my memory and writings to post on to this blog. I eagerly waited for each visit to come around, so I could jot down more experiences and events as they unfolded in his ashram. Mostly, I was lucky enough to have many stories to pass on to others with like-minds and who had shared experiences. Now Sai has gone, I’ve turned to creating YouTubes of Rumi poems, to add to my list of hobbies. Through Rumi poems and my photography, I’m able to create Youtubes that will keep both photos and the poems I love, alive and at my reach.
This is my first You Tube this year. I hope some of you will visit and take a few minutes to watch.
A few word to my fellow Word Press bloggers. I am so sorry not to be around to read your blogs. I have had a sprained wrist for awhile now which is still painful. I have also developed Repetitive strain injury too.
At the moment, I am using an ipad instead to help rest my wrist/arm from getting any worse. I must admit to finding an ipad almost impossible to use. For the moment I am not doing the usual of blogging rounds. Again most sorry. Eve
Darshans were a wonderful experience, especially in those early days in the ashram. The vitality and energy that flowed from Baba seemed to permeate the entire surrounding area and the village. Whatever that energy was it seemed to wash our souls. Reactions differed depending on people and their character. Some people were joyous and radiant, while others acted excitable and even anxious. Others seem to get rather cantankerous. Yet, others cried. I am sure whatever and wherever His energy reached, there would be a short charge to the “chakra system”, if only temporary. I remember one American lady described her darshan as an “extreme close embrace,” might add she was not alone in her interpretation. Whatever the person’s mood, it seemed to surface during darshan and afterwards for many hours. Another distinct feature of darshan, was a need to sleep afterwards or to be alone and silent. Baba, himself, shone from the inside out. There was never a time when he did not appear extremely beautiful. Often He seemed to glide rather than walk across the darshan sands. On several occasions during darshan when it rained, He just turned his palm upward and the rain stopped. Of course it began again the moment He stepped inside the temple’s veranda. Eve
Once an individual moves away from the worldly desires, all dharmas are one and the same. God resides in all living beings. He is in everything. One should not peal of the outer skin of the wound before it is healed. Once dry the dead skin falls off by itself. If the skin is forcibly pulled, the wound bleeds and the healing has to continue. In the same way, it is impossible for man to understand nishkaamakarma (actions without expectation of its fruits) before he realizes his true nature. To perceive this truth, is mans primary purpose. His varnaashrana dharma (The duties of man as per his level of consciousness); his gruhasta dharma (the duites of a householder) facilitate in unraveling this mystic secret. Once these dharmas are conquered, every thing becomes one and the same. -Baba From Sathya Sai Sath Sambhashana
It is hard to believe I have kept this little blog going now for five long years.Of course during that time, it has been changed and been rearranged so many times, I’ve lost count. It began as a blog for small stories and quotes from Sri Sathya Sai Baba, who died unfortunately, in 2011.
After his demise, the blog lost purpose. At least for me. The sadness of losing Sai Baba and the community that had been “home” to me for over two decades, left a big hole in my heart. Saddened, I renamed the blog “Children Of Light” then continued on with spiritual parables and quotes. Later still, I began adding more photos and you tubes. Just lately though, I have definitely developed writers block, although I’m not sure why. Perhaps I have reached the limits of my capabilities in the writing dept. Still, the photography is something I love to share with you all. So like the quote below, I have with some success built my sand-castle, decorated it with shells – now the tide has come in and washing all of it away, leaving me with the just the photos.
Just like children building a sand castle, we embellish it with beautiful shells, bits of driftwood, and pieces of colored glass. The castle is ours, off limits to others. We’re willing to attack if others threaten to hurt it. Yet despite all our attachment, we know that the tide will inevitably come in and sweep the sand castle away. The trick is to enjoy it fully but without clinging, and when the time comes, let it dissolve back into the sea. 🙂
There is an old saying that goes, don’t make friends with a shadow because a shadow does not smile. So true, eh ? Nor does a shadow talk. A shadow is just a reflection of something else. Old relationships are like that. Yet, sometimes we try to hold on to them, even when they no longer serve a purpose. One of my biggest faults is that I hang on to shadows, even though I know it is pointless. I don’t know why I do this. My head knows the truth, so why doesn’t my heart follow? I guess the problem with me, I am sentimental. It’s a huge fault I need to overcome.
With the demise of SaiBaba some three years ago, I’d lost a large part of ‘me’ and my way of life. I’d enjoyed yearly visits to his Ashram for some twenty years, and although he never gave me much attention, I still enjoyed the vibrations and atmosphere of being in his energy field. When he died, I was devastated. What to do? I tried to keep him alive through communicating with others around him. Big mistake on my part. They did not offer much comfort or friendship, most were busy making new lives for themselves. After a year or so, I too, wanted to move on, to forget the past, to begin a new life somewhere else. But moving house was not an option with a downturn in the market. Caught in that situation, I was dancing with shadows.
I still return to India during the winter to visit SaiBaba’s ashram. There is an undeniable presence of him there. There, in the subdued atmosphere of a bygone time, that decaying vista, that once was his lively ashram, becomes tender. There’s plenty of time for quiet reflection on all that was and now isn’t. The sun shines brightly over the ashram as always, the flower garden, even bigger now, is abundant with tropical plants and trees. I sit by the shaded lily pond, and ponder on the mental pain. There’s still a presence of him everywhere, but for me the grieving is not over. Everywhere there are pointers of times gone by, that throw shadows I would rather not see. I tell myself, “Oh get over it.” I don’t though. I retrace my footsteps to all my old haunts.
I am going back this winter to India to take more photos, but this time I’ll take a whole new programme for building brand new habits. Thanks to Tiny Buddha, here are some pointers toward a new future. Perhaps they can help you too, if you are also dancing with shadows. – Don’t dance with shadows. No, No No!
But the truth is, there are no simple step-by-step instructions for knowing when it’s time to move on. Surely there are signs. But the most important is that small knowing voice within that says something isn’t right, and it can’t be fixed. It may never be easy to admit this. Endings always lead to uncertainty, and that can be terrifying. But they also beget new beginnings, and new opportunities for relationships that don’t leave us feeling depleted and defeated. How do we know when it’s time to move on? It’s when we find the courage to be honest with ourselves and acknowledge that staying will do more harm than good. We’re the only ones who can admit this to ourselves. And we’re the only ones who can change our lives for the better by finding the strength to walk away. –Tiny Buddha
Identify what the experience taught you to help develop a sense of closure.
Here’s my new list:
1. Write everything you want to express in a letter. Even if you choose not to send it, clarifying your feelings will help you come to terms with reality as it is now.
2. Visualize an empowered single you—the person you were before meeting your friend or loved one. That former you was pretty awesome, and now you have the chance to be him or her again.
3. Create a space that reflects your present reality. Take down old pictures; delete their emails from your saved folder.
4. Reward yourself for small acts of acceptance. Get a facial after you delete all contact numbers.
5. Hang this statement somewhere you can see it. “Loving myself means letting go.”
For My Sai Baba friends who enjoy photos. Here’s several from my collection.. Sai Ram
True teaching is always an epiphany: sometimes a clap of thunder …but often only a whisper, easily missed.
An old man was once warned that there was a cobra on the roadside of the path he proposed to walk through. But he said, he had never seen it and so he did not believe it. Unfortunately for him, he did believe in it later, after it bit him. But then, it was too late to benefit from the information that he had heard earlier. Several leaders had to acknowledge that there is destiny that shapes events in lives, irrespective of individual efforts.
Know that everyone has to come to the same conclusion, sooner or later – for, there is a limit to the capacity of the individual to control events in the world. Beyond that, there is an Unseen Hand that takes over the wheel of events. One may call it Destiny, another may call it Providence and the third may call it God – the Names do not matter. What matters is your humility, your ability to wonder, and sense of awe at the grandeur and magnificence of Divinity.
“Loneliness and solitude are two different things. When you are lonely, it is easy to delude yourself into believing that you are on the right path. Solitude is better for us, as it means being alone without feeling lonely. But eventually it is best to find a person, the person who will be your mirror. Remember, only in another person’s heart can you truly see yourself and the presence of God within you.”
-The Forty Rules of Love
Shams Tabrizi – photo Reflection created by Eve.
thanks to Wadild for the quote
“Gradually it dawned on Ursula that all religion she knew was but a particular clothing to a human aspiration. The aspiration was the real thing – the clothing was a matter almost of national taste or need. The Greeks had naked Apollo, the Christians a white-robed Christ, the Buddhists a royal prince, the Egyptians their Osiris. Religions were local and religion was universal. Christianity was a local branch. There was as yet no assimilation of local religions into universal religion.
In religion there were two great motives of fear and love. The motive of fear was as great as the motive of love. Christianity accepted crucifixion to escape from fear; ‘Do your worst to me, that I may have no more fear of the worst.’ But that which was feared was not necessarily all evil, and that which was loved was not necessarily all good. Fear shall become reverence, and reverence is submission in identification; love shall become triumph, and triumph is delight in identification.”
– D H Lawrence, ‘The Rainbow’
This is a truly wonderful book. As I read it again, some 20+ years since it blew me away the first time, I am reminded as to why it blew me away. He simply refuses to settle for anything less than ‘the empyrean’, which for him is something that happens to body *and* soul…
The Universal Body of the Lord comprises all things–trees, flowers, leaves, hills, mountains, rivers, oceans, and so forth. A time will come, must come, when one actually perceives this all–pervading Universal Form of the One. The variety of His shapes and guises is infinite, uncountable, without end. Just as ice is nothing but water, so the Beloved is without form, without quality, and the question of manifestation does not arise. When this is realized, one has realized one’s Self. For, to find the Beloved is to find one’s Self, to discover that God is one’s very own, wholly identical with one’s self, the innermost Self, the Self of the self. First of all it is necessary to become acquainted with Him Whom you wish to invoke. Constantly think and talk of Him, look at his pictures, sing His praises or listen to sacred music, visit places of pilgrimage, seek solitude or associate with the holy and wise, so as to become familiar with Him. When this has been achieved, you may call Him “Father” or “Mother”. Some relationship of this kind has to be established with Him, because people of the world do not feel affinity unless their bond is defined in such a manner. You are accustomed to ties of kinship in worldly life; this is why you have to bind yourself by some sort of relationship in the spiritual field as well. Even though at the start you may not feel deep devotion, learn to invoke Him unceasingly and with perseverance by repeating His Name, or by any other method, until gradually He will fill your heart. However, prayer, meditation, alms offered in His Name, and so forth, are necessary even after the bond of love has been forged, so as to keep it unimpaired. In this way the awareness of Him will become your second nature and never leave you to your last breath. This is what is termed communion with God. – Ma
I have chosen this wonderful passage from page 87 of the book “The Essential Sri Anandamayi Ma by Alexander Lipski. The Life and Teachings of a 20th Century Indian Saint”. I just loved this excerpt and wish to share it with you all.
Selected Discourses of Anandamayima – Part Two
THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD
There are two kinds of pilgrims on life’s journey. The one, like a tourist, is keen on sightseeing, wandering from place to place, flitting from one experience to another for the fun of it.
The other treads the path that is consistent with man’s true being and leads to his real home, to self-knowledge. Sorrow will, of a certainty, be encountered on the journey undertaken for the sake of sight-seeing and enjoyment. So long as one’s real home has not been found, suffering is inevitable. The sense of separateness is the root cause of misery, because it is founded on error, on the conception of duality.
A man’s belief is greatly influenced by his environment; therefore he should choose the company of the holy and the wise. Belief means to believe in one’s self, disbelief to mistake the non-self for one’s self.
There are instances of self-realisation occurring by the grace of god whereas, at other times, it can be seen that he awakens, in some, a feverish yearning after truth. In the first case, attainment comes spontaneously, in the second it is brought about by trials, but all is wrought solely by His mercy.
An eternal relationship exists between god and man. But in his play it is sometimes there and sometimes severed, or rather appears to be severed; it is not really so, for the relatgionship is eternal. Again, seen from another side, there is no such thing as a relationship. Someone who came to meet this boy, said, “i am a newcomer to you” and he got the reply “ever new and ever old indeed!’
The light of the world comes and goes, it is unstable. The light that is eternal can never be extinguished. By this light, you behold the outer light. Whatever appears to you in the universe is due solely to that great light within you, and only because the supreme knowledge of the essence of things lies hidden in the depths of your being, is it possible for you to acquire knowledge of any kind.
Living with a master, I have seen with my own eyes that miracles are but little things to a master. Yogananda performed many miracles without even letting them be known. They were normal for him for the simple fact that we are all part of a cosmic energy. With this energy you can put yourself in tune with any ray of truth you wish and understand many things.
For example, when I wrote a song for the Psalm of David, a Jewish friend told me, “I know that you’ve never been in a synagogue, but this is just the kind of music that a cantor sings in a synagogue.” How can we know these things? We are all part of the same reality. By meditation, and by the techniques that put you in tune with this vast truth, you begin to understand how others think, and how to succeed in whatever you feel guided to do, in any field.
Channeling does not mean calling with an empty mind and demanding, “Please give me something!” That which you wish to channel comes from within you, not from others or from information you have gathered.
At university I took a course in Greek, but almost never went to class. The professor said, “For some students here, it may not be worth their trouble to come to the exam.” Everyone turned to me and laughed. The night before the exam I still hadn’t studied, and in my desperation I made a very important discovery: Instead of thinking, “But this Greek is too difficult,” I said to myself, “I am a Greek!”
With this thought it then became only a question of recognition. In this way I absorbed as much as my mind was able to absorb that evening. As it turned out, only two students passed that exam and I was one of them – not for any special talent, but for this principle.
Saint Teresa of Avila said, “I don’t want to hear any of my nuns say, ‘I am not a saint,’ because you have come here to become saints.” It’s true that you haven’t yet arrived at this goal, but that isn’t the important thing. Don’t hypnotize yourself with the mistakes you have made. You are as much a child of God as any master who has ever lived. You have the capacity for infinite love.
I saw that Yogananda was always very serious about this. He saw in each of us the ability to become what he was. We’re hypnotized by the thought that we are weak, we are too human, we are full of jealousy, full of pettiness – but this is not the truth. As a youth I had the desire to become a poet and playwright. I sat down and wrote, “Page One, Chapter One…” and then…nothing. Finally I said to myself, “Why flood the world with my ignorance?” and I left this ambition and decided to seek God and truth. When I meditated a little I saw that inspirations come so quickly that it is difficult even to hold onto them all, because they do not come from me but from another source.
Yogananda taught us that we live surrounded by an ocean of energy. How do we attune ourselves with this energy, and how do we attract this energy? The great composers understand that they receive inspiration from a much greater source, while the not-so-great think that they create music with the mind. You can be original in creativity if you act from your center, from your heart. When a lover says, “I love you,” it is ever new, because it comes from the heart. Whatever you speak from your point of origin is original, even if the words have been used thousands of times before.
Seek inside yourself the fountain of inspiration, and you will see that God expresses Himself in a new way through each person, each flower, each cloud. There are two steps to follow: First, be aware of this fountain of inspiration, and then use will power to put it into action. Yogananda taught us exercises for recharging the body with energy, using willpower. I have seen many times that this energy is always available to be drawn upon.