"Unflinching devotion to the Teacher is paramount in the life of a true seeker. To begin with, an external God can be the object of faith. But once the devotee grows to be a seeker, only a Wise Teacher can fulfil his quest.  It is then for the seeker to get purified and enlightened by the words of wisdom from his Guru.  Their bond and attunement put the Teacher on the pedestal of God.  Such an impeccable Guru-sishya bond alone bestows wisdom, strength and fulfillment to the seeker."

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

Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha


Articles for Saadhana

 Listen to Prabhaata-rashmih Audio 

Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. Jai Guru.

Devotion is a very popular concept. It is practiced easily and commonly by millions of people in the world. In our country particularly you will find crores of people are given to devotion. Our Chaturdhāma darshan, yātra, sabarimala yātra, these places attract something like crores of people. Sabarimalai, every year I am told that 3 or 4 crores of people visit there. People cannot look at Lord Ayyappa even for seconds. Such a vast queue is there. So far as Chaturdhāma Darshana is concerned, it is available for a longer period and the crowd will be distributed. I think it is about more than 5 crores. You can understand the intensity of devotion, at least devotional susceptibility in our people.

But anything concerning human life is subject to thinking, examination, verification, improvement and what not! Devotion also is an expression of the human heart or mind. Being so, everything in devotion rests only with the human mind. Though you say, “I am devoted to God”, that God is nowhere near you, but you are devoted to God. So, your devotion is an outcry or an expression of your mind and heart. Depending upon your mind’s purity and heart’s innocence, the devotion will grow and it can become even full and overflowing. It does not become so because people don’t understand that in the whole process of devotion, their own personality, mind and heart alone are involved.

In Bhagavad Gita, we have eighteen chapters each of which is called a yoga. The first chapter is Vishāda Yoga – Grief Yoga; the second chapter is Sānkhya Yoga; the third is Karma Yoga; the fourth is Jnana Karma Yoga; fifth is Sannyāsa Yoga; sixth is Dhyāna Yoga; like that it goes on. In the twelfth chapter you find Bhakti Yoga is the subject given, name given. In the Bhakti Yoga, it proceeds in this manner: People who are given to contemplating upon the imperishable, absolute supreme, the soul, others who pick up devotion and are devoted to God in their own ways, which of the two is superior in the effect it produces? Then Krishna analyzing the whole subject comes up with a very, very simple proposition. I would like you to remember it very well:

मय्येव मन आधत्स्व मयि बुद्धिं निवेशय ।
निवसिष्यसि मय्येव अत ऊर्ध्वं न संशयः ।।
mayy-eva mana ādhatsva mayi buddhiṁ niveśaya
nivasiṣyasi mayy-eva ata ūrdhvaṁ na saṁśayaḥ
(Bhagavad Gita 12.8)

Mayy-eva mana ādhatsva mayi buddhiṁ niveśaya, the whole devotional practice is contained, completed. "Place your mind, dedicate your mind to me and dedicate equally your intelligence to me." In other words, your offer to God should be your mind which produces crisscross thoughts, your intelligence which rationalizes and assesses matters as right and wrong. He says, "Both the thoughtful mind and the rational intelligence should be offered to me and they should be asked to rest in me."

"When the mind and the intelligence rest in me, are offered to me, from that moment onwards, nivasiṣyasi mayy-eva, one will be living in me.". Mark the expression, "One will be living in me."

So, what do you have to do? Are you to pick up materials so many, chant many mantras, offer them in a certain order with a certain degree of piety and all that, or are you to offer the very mind which tells you to do all these things? We are generally acting and living in this world motivated by, sustained by, guided by the mind. So the mind guides you to do many things. He says, “Don’t offer the things guided by the mind. Offer the mind itself." From the mind, good as well as bad thoughts, bad memories, good memories, so many things will come. Don’t worry about them. "Make the mind rest on me. So, I will make sure that whatever bad is to be eliminated will be and whatever good is to be instilled will be. So don’t go after the so called multiple effects but go to the single cause and surrender the mind to me."

Then, even if you have surrendered, the intelligence may interfere. No, no! How will it be alright if you keep quiet like that? The surrender will not be alright. Surrender does not mean killing the paurusha, the self generated willpower. So, so many arguments will be there! He says “No. Even the arguing intelligence must be offered to me.”

People always ask what is meant by surrender. Surrender is giving the mind to God and make it rest on God, rely upon him. And equally so, deposit and establish your intelligence also there. Maybe my thought process is wrong; my attitude is wrong; my understanding of devotion is wrong; my concept about God is wrong. In spite of all these things, I surrender my very mind which produces many thoughts. I surrender and make the intelligence live in God so that every time, the mind will receive the right motivation and the intelligence will produce the right confirmation and affirmation.

Once the mind and the intelligence stand offered to God, they start resting on God, he says, nivasiṣyasi mayy-eva ata ūrdhvaṁ na saṁśayaḥ. "From that moment of mind, intelligence surrender and attunement, the individual will be living in me." Actually we are already living in God. We are upon the Earth; the Earth itself is inside God’s perimeter. But we think that because of our body, I have an individuality, that individuality makes me different from the Earth and earth’s orbit. That feeling of individuality and ego, that is what makes you feel you are away from God. Actually we are in God already, as the planets and celestial bodies are, as the plants and the oceans are, as the rivers and the mountains are. A small being that we are, we are already God. But you are not able to understand and accept it because of your own mind and intelligence.

So, "Offer the mind and intelligence to me. Once you do so, from that very moment you will start living in me. Nivasiṣyasi mayy-eva ata ūrdhvaṁ na saṁśayaḥ"

I would like you to think about this śloka. The message is very simple. You only have to lay your hands upon mind and intelligence. There is nothing besides the body, besides the mind and intelligence within the body. Surrender or offer or deposit these items in God just like you will offer a flower. What a great statement!

I always say the whole spiritual life, devotional life, yogic life is a psycho-intellectual refinement, a refinement of the mind and the intelligence, that part of our being. How beautifully it works!

Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru.

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