"Every moment of your life you are being carried to fulfilment, irresistibly. Everything that comes to you does so to improve, correct or alter your nature, thereby taking you nearer perfection. So, whenever agitation assails your mind, ponder over this truth again and again."

The Guiding force of Narayanashrama Tapovanam & Center for Inner Resources Development

Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha

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Harih Om Tat Sat. Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.

I want to make your search simpler, easier and more effective. To make it interesting, authoritative and conclusive, I am also culling out verses from different scriptures and presenting before you. Somehow I like it as I am a scriptural person.

In the whole creation, I am not referring to the world because the world is a very limited reference, whatever world we see, people in NASA are trying to say we have seen one more galaxy etc. So our world is a very limited world. I am referring to not merely world and whatever NASA people see, I refer to the whole creation.

Saunaka, a very mature householder went to Angiras, a forest dweller, an ascetic and he raised a question. Saunaka had a very protracted ritualistic life for decades and after all the ritualistic life he found that neither fire nor the oblations he offered nor the altar nor the preceptors who made him perform the sacrifices, none of them could answer his enquiry.

We did something for the higher Gods. Whether there are higher Gods, whether they got what we offered, are they pleased, do they have anything to tell us or give us? All these are absolutely zero. It is only a unilateral one-way performance. So how can anybody be happy? The rule in human world is:

प्रयोजनमनुद्दिश्य न मन्दोऽपि प्रवर्तते |
prayojanaṁ-anuddiśya na mando'pi pravartate |
(From works by Kumarila Bhatta)

Without having a specific result, even a fool will not act.

Suppose you eat your food and after one hour your hunger is not appeased, will you eat? Unless we have a benefit, we don’t undertake any work at all. Rituals and ceremonies are such pursuits which give us no result. We feel that we have performed and we feel that they have results and we will enjoy them perhaps after our body falls. So, our ritualists also are very careful. They say you will get nothing here. You will get only after you die so that it cannot be verified. Their idea was to make you do something good, they have succeeded in that.

So, Saunaka after a protracted ritualistic life could not find any satisfaction, meaning or purpose. He asked the people around him but none of them could answer him. So he became all the more dejected. When the people of the world around are not able to answer, what is the scope? The scope is only one. “There are some people who felt disgusted with the world, retired and are happily sitting in forest areas. So let me go to somebody like that.” Saunaka went to Angiras who was living in a hermitage. He went there and prostrated before Angiras. This is where you should understand.

What did he do? He only submitted before Angiras an enquiry, a question. He did not ask him for any ritual or any clarification as to whether the rituals are useful, where will the results be etc. He only said:

कस्मिन्नु भगवो विज्ञाते सर्वमिदं विज्ञातं भवतीति ॥
kasmin-nu bhagavo vijñāte sarvam-idaṁ vijñātam bhavati-iti ॥

“My dear Lord, by knowing which in particular, specifically, can I know everything in all?” Is there any representative factor in this world by knowing which we can know everything? So, I would like you to understand that the enquiry was after knowledge. He did not want any ritual! He did not want to know where are the heavens, please give me more address, wherefrom can I get a vehicle by which I can go there, none of these things. So the quest of man in the ultimate analysis is a quest for knowledge, the thirst is for knowledge. Then Angiras replied him. Now this statement, let it be.

The next statement I am going to make is – in the spiritual life, spiritual world, spiritual enquiry, what you need is clarity, surety and confirmation. You should become unshakable in your mind and intelligence. Mind becomes unshakable when it is satisfied and contended. But buddhi, intelligence will create some doubt, suspicion and it will upset everything. So the intelligence should know and mind should become contented. These are the two requirements we have.

Srimad Bhagavata is a very beautiful devotional text means it explains God, explains and describes devotion, it characterizes the devotee. It tells you everything about the world, the human individual who interacts with it, everything! It discusses religious matters and yogic matters also. In the spiritual world, one must have the realization of truth, whatever that truth is.

We will all agree that God is all-pervading. If God is all-pervading, why should we miss Him? If He is everywhere, can we miss Him? But why is it that we are not getting Him? So there is a mystery about it. This mystery should be unveiled and you must be very clear about your realization. What I always say is: “Tell everybody God is present everywhere but the only place where you can see Him, realize Him and feel Him is within your own heart; nowhere else in this world.” What you realize within you, can you take it as God, is another question. That is where the intelligence plays its role. What you realize in you alone is God and He alone is present everywhere, that understanding is bestowed upon by the intelligence. Experience you have from the mind level. I will recite a verse from Srimad Bhagavatam:

स्थित्युद्भवप्रलयहेतुरहेतुरस्य
यत्स्वप्नजागरसुषुप्तिषु सद्बहिश्च ।
देहेन्द्रियासुहृदयानि चरन्ति येन
सञ्जीवितानि तदवेहि परं नरेन्द्र ।।
sthity-udbhava-pralaya-hetur-ahetur-asya
yat-svapna-jāgara-suṣuptiṣu sad-bahiś-ca |
dehendriyāsu-hṛdayāni caranti yena
sañjīvitāni tad-avehi paraṁ narendra ||
(Srimad Bhagavatam 11.3.35)

My dear Narendra, King, understand That itself is the Supreme. Which is the Supreme, he is describing step by step.

Sthity-udbhava-pralaya-hetur-ahetur-asya. The Supreme is the one cause of the entire creation and it is the one power that sustains the created. It is again the power which dissolves the creation. He is giving you a description in its full measure, whatever is manifested as creation, the supreme is the cause or source of it. It is the substratum and preserving power; that is also the dissolving power. The concept is too big before us. We have not seen the world in full. So how can you say the source of the world? So it is almost incomprehensible for us. Then can we realize the Supreme, yes. I don’t know whether you understand me.

Yat-svapna-jāgara-suṣuptiṣu sad-bahiś-ca. First the biggest description. Then he says the very close personal description, yat-svapna-jāgara-suṣuptiṣu sad-bahiś-ca, that which is present in your waking state, dream state and sleep state. Waking, sleep and dream are clearly very personal individual experiences. What is present in that, it is accessible to you and you cannot doubt it. Frist of all he said, here is the description - The source of the whole world but itself it has no source. The cause and effect begin when the world was produced but itself it has no cause. It is present in your jāgrat, svapna and suṣupti and is equally outside. So, tell me whether you can realize it now or not.

Then, out of the three states, one is sleep and we know nothing about it. Another is dream, when we wake up it vanishes. So the only valid and can-be-handled state for us is the waking. Now in the waking, Yat-svapna-jāgara-suṣuptiṣu sad-bahiś-ca. Then dehendriyāsu-hṛdayāni caranti yena. Deha, indriya, āsu, hṛdayāni, caranti yena. So you cut away sleep and dream. Sleep we cannot understand. Dream, the moment we wake up it vanishes, so where is the dream for us to examine? So both are cut off. We are left with only waking state.

In the waking state, deha indriya āsu hṛdayāni caranti. It is the one that animates and activates the body, the senses, mind and the prāṇās. That wonderful presence which animates the body and activates the body, activates the prāṇic forces, activates the mind, buddhi, that is the Supreme Truth. Tell me whether it is accessible or not. Where is it? So what is your focus? Your focus will be only to understand the presence within the body. Which presence - which activates your body, wakes you up in the morning, which activates the eyes, ears, nose, hands, life forces, everything.

I will simplify it by another explanation. In the whole creation, there are only three factors or constituents, one is matter, another is energy. This manner and energy are interconvertible. Now I am speaking. I am producing energy. Tell me wherefrom do I produce energy? From the food I have taken and from the nourishments my body has. As much as I speak, so many cells I have taken from the body and every time I speak, hundreds and thousands and lakhs of cells are used up and like that for every other activity. Sound is an energy but what the body has is matter. Here I am converting matter into energy. We are equally converting energy into matter. Any living organism requires heat. Heat is an energy. For growth of the body, heat is necessary. So, the heat is used up and you have matter. So the interconversions are going on.

Apart from matter and energy, there is one factor here. What is that – consciousness. This is the only third factor. Matter and energy are not God. They are inert and insentient. So they cannot sense, cannot speak, think, feel, but we do all these. So there is something besides matter and energy and that is the power of animation, the presence that animates you and that is called consciousness.

What is consciousness? Consciousness is not a substance. We cannot categorize and describe it. But still we have to speak about it. Consciousness is that by virtue of which you become conscious of other things as well as yourself. It is consciousness that makes you say ‘I Am’, ‘I am awake’, ‘I slept’, ‘I dreamt’, ‘I eat’, ‘I was happy’, ‘I am happy’, ‘I am unhappy’. As it makes you conscious of other things, it can also make you conscious of itself. That is why you say ‘I Am’. When somebody calls you, you say ‘Yes, I am here’. How do you say that? The word ‘Am’ comes because you know it. So this is the consciousness, the third factor. Tell me whether you have all the three. Then what are you searching?

Now the question is when will you understand this consciousness is the third factor and that is what you call God, the Soul, Supreme Reality, Brahman etc.? This knowledge cannot come to you as long as you have desire. So is it possible for us not to have desires you may ask me. Okay you have your desire and are you happy? Then without desire will you be happy - yes.  To live with desire and to live with no desire, if you compare the two, living without desire is far more effective than living with desire. The moment you desire, the mind gets constricted and becomes narrowed down. When you are free of desires, the mind comes to full expression.

A devotee who prays and a devotee who has no prayer but still goes on praising and remembering God, the second devotee is far more fulfilled than the first. Whether you desire or not, what is it that you want? You want your needs to be met. All the animals and birds, even the trees and creepers, they are living because their desires are met, their needs are met. Do they desire?

Please try without desire. You will find your life is much better. To desire is redundant, to desire is to constrict your scope of expression, means of expression, potential for work. If no desire is there, automatically you will be contended. When you are contended with nothing, you start searching wherefrom do I get this contentment. The answer will be the contentment comes to you from yourself. From where? From the consciousness that you are. So, you find that you have a blissful consciousness that marks the end of it.

Is it clear? It is so simple. Have no desire. If protracted desire you have, you try to work in a protracted manner and it is fulfilled, you get 2 millimeters of contentment. With no desire, you will get kilometers of contentment.

You think of a rich man, a resourceful man who is interested only in amassing wealth. He is always thinking of amassing wealth. You think of another rich man who is very anxious to give. Can you tell me who is happier? The rich man who never gives, is he happy or the rich man who is anxious to give? The second rich man is happier and if he starts concentrating on giving and giving, you will find he will start getting more and more, otherwise he cannot give. If you want to give, you must have. Otherwise how will you give? Even providence will conspire to strengthen his hand. This is what I feel.

So, remember this point, the source of everything, the presence in you which causes the waking, causes the dream, causes sleep and particularly which activates you in the waking state, that is the Supreme. And that Supreme is neither matter nor energy but the third factor called consciousness. Besides these three, nothing is there any time, anywhere.

Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.

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