Seeking And Finding, The “Get Real” Factor

If you dream of finding a great Teacher, a Master, the operative advice is, “get real.” Great teachers may appear once in a hundred years. Masters require great sacrifice of those willing to follow them … and as we are not prepared to pay the price, it’s best to start exactly where we find ourselves with the help that is within reach. More likely I can find a guide, someone who knows the way but is still in the process of becoming. A useful guide is one who will help me to connect to my authentic self, that self that is connected to God. No shame, no blame, no fear, marks this journey, where every inner movement needs to be seen without judgment.  – His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama

inevitably, sooner or later the teacher dies.

We will hear his voice no more.
It is the end of an era.
You, you mourn.
With the spiritual parent gone, you are no longer the child.
What is a pupil to do?
To find another teacher seems necessary, but wait— What did he or she teach you?  The source of  “I Am” is within.

Richard Gere inspired by the Dalai Lama

George Harrison and Ravi Shankar inspired

by The Hari Krishnas and Sathya Sai Baba

Deva Premal and Miten Inspired by Osho

FINDING

The wise say I can learn from everyone I meet.  But exactly what is it that is being learned? What can I glean from some rough lout, some timid or repressed soul, some crazy?  Surely they have nothing to teach an educated person like me. But there is no better teacher than the mirror, and every person can be my mirror, reflecting back to me some aspect of myself, particularly when it is something I dislike. I contain multitudes, as Walt Whitman put it. There is nothing I can see in another that I do not also contain to some degree—cheat, murderer, martyr, hero, and much more. Looking closely I discover that fundamentally we are all alike—all subject to the same passions and hopes, and this touches a feeling of compassion in me that does not otherwise appear.

My deepest guilty secret is gradually revealed to me: I believe that at least in some respect, I am better than everyone else. Only a penetrating view of my inner world dispels this pernicious illusion.
Books are helpful—reading prepares the mind and books are available where a living guide is not to be found. But eventually we need the human connection. A book cannot look back at me and hear my tone of voice. It cannot remind me to release the tension in my shoulders. It does not know when I am ready for the next step.

https://parabola.org/2014/07/26/how-to-find-a-spiritual-teacher/

The Meaning Of MahaSamadhi Or Shrine – Sathya Sai Baba

I am in your hearts,

You are in Mine.

Don’t be misled

I have come to light the lamp of love in your hearts, to see that it shines day by day with added luster. Sai Baba

You cannot see Me, but I am the Light you see by.
You cannot hear Me, but I am the Sound you hear by.
You cannot know Me, but I am the Truth by which you live. Sai Baba

Isaac Tigrett’s Krishna with flowers – beneath his flat in the ashram. The flat is now vacant. He has joined the Muddenahalli Group.

Sai Baba giving darshan during the 1980s under the old tree in Whitefield

Remembering Sai Baba during darshan

The term guru means one who dispels the darkness of ignorance. Gu means one who is beyond attributes (gunas), ru implies one who is beyond forms (rupas). This refers only to God. That is why the guru is hailed as Brahma, Vishnu, or Siva. Only God is the true guru. All others are merely teachers, like the teachers of different subjects in a college. Guru is the one who reveals the guri (target) to the disciple. Guri here refers to the Aathmic Principle. Picture taken on Gurupoornima late afternoon 2011 – just months after Sai Baba passed.  Notice two rainbows in the sky – they appeared after a storm about 5 p.m. that evening.

By the tree where many seekers sit to reflect on  the memory of Sai Baba – Prashanthi Nilayam 


What is the Significance of Sathya Sai Baba’s Samadhi? ~ We learned from Swami all the  important practises of an aspirant and how to achieve the highest from our practise.  One of the most important spiritual practises that one can incorporate into regular puja is daily worship at the  “jeeva samadhi tomb or shrine.” (Samadhi) The reason being that the guru’s presence is still alive, although not seen, but still conveying energy to all who seek. The shakti energy remains forever in the Shrine of a powerful teacher – much  the same as it did during his life-time. That is to say his energy radiated out to seekers through the  body while he was alive, but now the “same energy” radiates to all from His Shrine. Sai Baba is still working through his vibration,  much as he had done over the decades while alive. Today, Sai Baba’s Samadhi  has a concentrated energy force that permeates all areas of his ashram. Very much like  a vortex of a storm, this energy or shakti is far-reaching.  The uplifting vibrations are  apparent in and around the Shine, embedded as they are, in every nook and cranny of the immediate area of the Samadhi. The guru’s shakti has now become a forceful tool for enlightenment. For those who come to the Shrine to worship and practise, there’s nothing better than the vibrations of the late Sai Baba.

The jeeva samadhi shrines/samadhi of any great gurus can lead aspirants further toward their chosen spiritual goal. The most important first step in all of spiritual life is  awareness, thus the guru is the very one to point that out. Every human-being has the In-dweller source, it is the guru’s job to seek out our very own In-dweller, the liberator of our souls.  Often it takes someone with a powerful shakti to drive us inward to where the source of our being is waiting to be discovered. Our own In-dweller lays dormant until  we are awakened by the forceful shakhi of a true guru/spiritual director. Thus, the search for the In-dweller, the one without a second, is the quest of all living beings.

Of course, for seekers of material gain and those with desires, worship at the jeeva samadhi of their chosen guru can help take away their need to fulfil their desires, for they will focus on the inner life through daily practice. Thus the “material minded” may get what they seek for a while, but  are transformed over time into true seekers. There are “humbug” seekers always, and once the guru is gone, they will leave the ashram, due to lack of interest in  “inner work.” Spiritual awareness and worship at the Shrine/Samadhi is very helpful in turning our minds away from all worldly desires and soon brings peace and a true sense of fulfilment to those seekers who are determined. This is the importance of darshan at the Shrine/Samadhi of a great guru like Sai Baba, or others like Ramana Maharshi  Eve

 Madhusudan mimicking Sai Baba in his new C-ashram

Welcome To The Path Of The Heart

goldenheart

 

….

I say welcome to the path of the heart! The journey within you! Believe it or not, this can be your reality. To love unconditionally and to come alive as never before! This path of love doesn’t go anywhere, although it is an adventure all the same. It just brings you more here and now into the present moment; to be in touch with every second that life gives you. To bring you into the reality of who you already are. This path takes you out of your suffering mind and back into your heart centre where the journey began long ago. There are countless ways of bringing you back to your heart and life without a doubt teaches you that.

 

my photo taken this year in the garden of rocks where there are several wonderful painted rocks. Here is one of Sai Baba. the garland, I could not quite place over the rock as I would have liked.

LIFE always gives us
exactly the teacher we need
at every moment.
This includes every mosquito,
every misfortune,
every red light,
every traffic jam,
every obnoxious supervisor
(or employee),
every illness, every loss,
every moment of joy or depression,
every addiction,
every piece of garbage,
every breath.

Every moment is the guru

Charlotte Joko Beck

As Simple As Pie – Inspirational Quotation

buddha5_n

Many of you will have already heard  the sad news that beloved Thay (Thich Nhat Hanh,) is seriously ill in Plum Village in rural France, where he has lived for many years. Whether he will survive or not we do not know yet. He is 88 years old now and for most of  his life he has been  a simple Buddhist Monk; a humble and beautiful being who has been an inspirational to us all.  “Where were you before you were born?” is a beautiful talk from so many given over the years.  He takes this deeply philosophical question of life and death, turns it in to a homily providing us with an answer that is as simple as pie.

 

Today, we hear that Thay is now in hospital, sadly he is in the process of passing away.  It’s a great loss for the world. 

 


Where Were You Before You Were Born?

Sometimes people ask you: “When is your birthday?” But you might ask yourself a more interesting question: “Before that day which is called my birthday, where was I?” Ask a cloud: “What is your date of birth?” Before you were born, where were you?”

If you ask the cloud, “How old are you? Can you give me your date of birth?” you can listen deeply and you may hear a reply. You can imagine the cloud being born. Before being born it was the water on the ocean’s surface. Or it was in the river and then it became vapor. It was also the sun because the sun makes the vapor. The wind is there too, helping the water to become a cloud. The cloud does not come from nothing; there has been only a change in form. It is not a birth of something out of nothing.

Sooner or later the cloud will change into rain or snow or ice. If you look deeply into the rain, you can see the cloud. The cloud is not lost; it is transformed into rain, and the rain is transformed into healthy soil and the soil into cherry trees and the cherry trees into blossoms, the blossoms into cherries and then into the cherry pie you eat. Today if you eat a piece of cherry pie, give yourself time to look at the pie and say:

“Hello, cloud! I recognize you.”

By doing that, you have insight and understanding into the real nature of the pie and the cloud. You can also see the ocean, the river, the heat, the sun, the soil and the trees in the pie. Looking deeply, you do not see a real date of death for the cloud. All that happens is that the cloud transforms into rain or snow. There is no real death because there is always a continuation. A cloud continues the ocean, the river and the heat of the sun, and the rain continues the cloud.

9782071Before it was born, the cloud was already there, so today, when you eat a piece of cherry pie, please follow your breathing. Look into the cherry pie and say hello to the cloud.

~ Thich Nhat Hanh

 


Sathya Sai, My Story – Sathya Sai Memories Cont.

swami9599

My Story

“Sai Baba to a devotee in 2009 – “In two years there will be no more foreigners here.” Most of my friends living in Puttaparthi have left. It is the end of an era. The whole point of being with the guru is to grow in wisdom. Once you have had the physical presence for so long, it is time to go away and put into practice what you have learnt. Remember always, the journey, is from oneself to oneself. It is not a point of who is the best, the closest or the most popular among us. These habits belong to the world, not to people wishing to advance on the spiritual path.  Sai should not be  thought of as a personality, but a spiritual mirror. The guru is first and foremost a Mirror into our hearts.

 

What does a guru do?

“The very first lesson devotees learn from a guru is to catch his hint. A guru always hints. Later on when the devotee is well on his way, the hint will be felt even stronger and comes to be known as the ‘divine hint.’ To some people the guru will use words to aid the devotee to learn. Sometimes, even orders are given, because orders are  easy to understand. The devotee needs always to understand the hint,  for if the hint is lost so also  is the opportunity of learning.

The grace of God cannot be seized; it descends. The actions of the Guru are nothing in themselves; they are only for the good of the devotees. We are loved by the guru and then we feel love for the guru in return. The love is created.  To say ‘I love you’ is easy, but to realise it is difficult. Here is the hidden the mystery of the issue: God Realisation, or Truth.

The guru who has planted the love in the heart of a devotee will always look after him/her, as the gardener looks after a plant; he does not want it to die. The guru devotee relationship is ‘a journey of the soul’…..  Devotee and guru have links with each other from the past. From other dimension too, from where they come.  Returning together although, we might not recognise this link at first, the Guru always knows his devotees. Time and Space does not exist for him. Devotees  come back many times  to be with the guru. Sometimes the training can be rough, for others it is according to their temperament. Some are trained according to the will of the guru. Each of us are at different places of understanding. We are trained accordingly.”


 

Thirty years have passed since I first heard about Sathya Sai Baba. I can still remember vividly the Sunday afternoon in a bookshop in Georgetown, Washington, D.C. when, out of the blue a young man came up to me and said, “That’s rubbish!” He then pointed to the book I was looking at and grinned. I asked why was it rubbish. He did not explain, he only asked me to follow him to the next book aisle where there were books on Indian philosophy   and various other subjects to do with India. He pointed out a book with an orange cover. “That’s the book for you.” he said then took the book out from the bookcase and placed it into my hand. I glanced at the book without much ado. The little man on the front cover grabbed my attention. His afro hairdo did not exactly turn me on. I was not into Indian gurus at that time. In fact, I knew little about India and absolutely nothing about Indian traditions or religion. I declined the book. The young man, who interested me more than the book because he was so good looking, began a short conversation. I cannot remember just what about, but in the end he decided he would buy the book for me. “”Oh I don’t want it!” I said with a sigh. It wasn’t a book I would read. He insisted. We went to the counter of the bookshop and he paid for the book and gave it to me. Before he left, he wrote an address inside the book cover where bhajans were held in the state Maryland. I lived in Virginia and knew there was no way I would ever make it all the way around the beltway to Bethesda, Maryland to learn more about the guru. The book was put away in my bookcase and never read. It would be years later before I was to meet, again by chance, another person, who would introduce me to Sai Baba with more positive results. I did not visit India until 1990, years after the first introduction to him through the book incident in the Yes bookshop, in Washington, D.C.

The years with Sai Baba passed by quickly. I visited every year and sometimes twice a year, until recently. Those early years, now a distant memory, were full of sweetness and surprise. We were free to roam the ashram at will. Darshans were regular and always at the same time. Sai never kept us waiting. A front line was not too hard a task in those days and we all saw plenty of him. Playful, mischievous and caring, he reflected back to us our own strengths and weaknesses like a mirror. I also noticed, at times, he appeared shy – yet, he always hid his grins from us, when we made him laugh unexpectedly. He was often formal, warm to many, cool to others, harsh with the undisciplined. We always knew our place when at darshan. He was never to be underestimated.  I have known Sai Baba, although not personally, most of my life and have survived many an ordeal in his ashram. Would I do it all again? I cannot say yes or no.  There was so much joy but also Sai is a harsh teacher, there were also many tears. Oftentimes, I felt left out or let down or have become doubtful. A terminal case of doubts always exist in devotees/followers until they have overcome the business of ‘overcoming the form.’  I suppose I’ve obtained another sort of wealth,  one not of this world. Only time will tell. I shall miss Sai Baba and his darshans. They  are fading  away, like summer flowers as the fall sets in…..


https://sathyasaimemories.wordpress.com/2013/12/15/miss-tedeev-goes-to-the-ballet/

Man learns through experience, and the spiritual path is full of different kinds of experiences. He will meet many difficulties and obstacles, and they are the very experiences he needs to encourage and complete the cleansing process.

-Sai Baba


…•♥•.¸ૐ•♥•Sairam!!…•♥•.¸ૐ•♥•

Life is a song – sing it. Life is a game – play it. Life is a challenge – meet it. Life is a dream – realize it. Life is a sacrifice – offer it. Life is love – enjoy it.

-Sai Baba

…•♥•.¸ૐ•♥•Sairam!!…•♥•.¸ૐ•♥•