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Scatter the Seeds of Spirituality
9 March 2011, Ashram Inauguration, Raipur, India
It gives me great joy to see so many of you here assembled for what, in today’s world, is a somewhat strange activity called meditation. In the modern world today it is a surprise that there are people who are still interested in spiritual values, spiritual growth – in fact all the values that do not pertain to the material world but pertain to the higher worlds through which we have to evolve. It is really strange, and I must say it is very fortunate too, that for the future of humanity there are some seeds like you all available here, who will carry spiritual values into the future through yourself, through your children, grandchildren, and so on.
People have forgotten what human beings should be like, what humanity is, what are the values to be cherished; people have forgotten. Today’s world exists only on absolute selfishness (svaarth). Even the family is excluded, generally, in a male ego which is only looking for its own progress and if at all the family finds a place, it is like some more possessions of the man: my wife, my son, my daughter – to further aggrandise the person and to add to his pride. But Sahaj Marg especially, among all the spiritual paddhatis [systems] that are prevalent, is a somewhat unusual teaching, a method of teaching, a method of practice – a body of teaching, I should say.
When Babuji Maharaj was asked, my Master, he was asked, “Why don’t you teach the Vedas and the Upanishads and the Gita?” he said, “What was there before the Vedas?” The Vedas had a beginning in time and hundreds of centuries have gone on before that, without the Veda, without the Upanishad. He said, “Do you mean to say there was no God when there was no Veda?”
If they lived and grew to produce something like you all today, surely it is not the Vedas that have played a part, nor was it the puja [worship]. It was simple honest living, sharing and caring, our own tribal lives, our old tribal values, our village life when there was a community. All doors were open, children ran around from house to house, hut to hut, and there was no difference. God created a one world of human beings. Human beings have created separate worlds of caste, community, colour, race, sex. My Master used to sometimes very boldly assert that we are criminals; we have ruined God’s creation. All those who have contributed to these divisions, sub-divisions, sub-sub-divisions deserve to be punished one way or the other, either here or in the hereafter. It is preferable that we undergo such punishment and suffering here rather than leave it to the netherworlds for which we are bound, because here we know what it is, there we won’t know.
So today we have opened, we have inaugurated, I have dedicated this ashram to the memory of my beloved, revered Master Babuji Maharaj. These ashrams are not places of worship. They are not temples. There is no puja paddhati [method of ritual worship] here. Please don’t ruin the atmosphere here by indulging in… I know many people who come who are still attached to religion, and who sit down and do japa [repetition of a mantra] rather than meditation. That it is not permitted you all know; that it is harmful for you, do you know? That you are spoiling the atmosphere for other people, do you know, do you realise? So you see, this place is only for meditation – dhyaan kaksh [meditation hall], my friend yesterday said. That means we do dhyaan – sit, meditate as often as you like, but no more than one hour at a time.
And from this assembly, you know… I remember 1964 when I joined the Mission, when I first went to Shahjahanpur; there was only one other person there. His name is Mr. Munni Lal Moriya and he came from Allahabad. We were the only two. When I attended my first bhandara [spiritual gathering], Basant Panchami in Shahjahanpur in 1966, including Babuji Maharaj there were forty-two people, that’s all, coming from all over various parts of India, mostly Uttar Pradesh. Tamilnadu had probably three abhyasis, Kerala nothing at all, Karnataka maybe fifty, Andhra Pradesh maybe three hundred – it had the maximum membership. All together if you put, maybe we had seven or eight hundred abhyasis in 1964. Today, here there are more than 2200 abhyasis in this hall, and this hall is bigger than the hall in Shahjahanpur which Babuji said will be the centre for Sahaj Marg, where the lamp of Sahaj Marg was lit, where Sahaj Marg system came into being by His Grace, which he learned from his guru, Lalaji Maharaj.
So you see, it has grown. In Lalaji’s time, there was no Mission. There were only different groups under Lalaji Maharaj. Some in Kanpur, some in, I don’t know, Fatehgarh, some in Etawah, Etah, Bareilly, things like that. Today the Mission has centres in more than 102 countries of the world – throughout the world. We have ashrams in the United States of America, all over Europe, in South Africa, in Australia, in Malaysia, in Russia – in so many countries we have ashrams. I believe we have more than 220 ashrams throughout the world today. But yet it is only a drop in the ocean of humanity. If you take the population of even Raipur, and the number of abhyasis we have in Raipur, it will be, I don’t know, one millionth or one billionth of the population of this [place]. But it is also important – like one seed must remain to create another plant which will give hundreds of seeds from which will come a garden, from which will come a forest. If that seed is lost, humanity is lost. Humanity has no hope after that.
Why I say this is, that you are all doing abhyas not only for your own sake, for your own spiritual evolution, but as individuals who carry the seed of spirituality in your heart – not to be kept but to be given. No farmer (no krishak) keeps seeds safe under lock and key. They have to be thrown, scattered, sown everywhere, so that they will grow; and from each seed you get a hundred thousand seeds – that is how we are fed. That is nature’s bounty and that is what we as human beings living a human life, must think of as our duty to pass on this divine heritage, not merely to your son, or nephew or niece or whatever, but scatter it wide.
Karma yoga says we are not to look for results. Farmers… I don’t know whether they are aware that there is something called karma yoga, but they know that if you sow so much, nature decides on how much you will get as fasal [yield]. One year it is so much, one year it is less, fifth year there is nothing at all because there were no rains, seventh year abundant crops, prices fall. So, like krishi [agriculture], we are also krishaks; we sow, but we do not expect to see the result of what we do here.
Babuji Maharaj was once working on the plane when I was sitting near him, sitting next to him, coming back from, I think Europe. He was deeply engrossed – khoye-khoye baithe the. After thirty, forty minutes I asked him, “Babuji, you were lost. What were you doing?” He said, “Tum batao. [You tell me.]” So I said, “You are probably doing some work in the future.” He said, “How much in the future?” I said, “I don’t know mathematics, so I cannot tell you, but quite far in the future.” He patted me on the back and said, “Shabaash! [Well done!]” I said, “But, for such a small reply you are saying Shabaash!” He said, “You don’t know; one person in a million cannot give this answer. To know that it was in the future was itself a great answer to an important question. To know that it was quite far into the future was even better.” I said, “Now tell me what you were actually doing?” He said, “I was preparing the foundation for the special personality that will come to destroy this universe when Kali Yuga ends.” Thousands and thousands of years in the future, you see.
According to some tradition, Kali Yuga will last four lakhs thirty-two thousand years, out of which we have only seen five thousand or six thousand years, and in these five thousand, six thousand years we see what society has become, what values have become, what the heart has become. The heart has become stone, therefore we hoard gold and silver and whatnot for ourselves. I wonder if there is a disaster how many people will even think of their children! This is the world of today.
So to prepare these human values, cherish and nourish humanity, make it a liveable world again where women can be safe, children can be safe, protected, loved, this is very essential, this practice. And each one of you is a torchbearer. If you don’t do that, if you don’t recognise that responsibility and carry it out, whatever you may become in yourself, you are a failure as far as Sahaj Marg is concerned.
It is not enough that one person becomes. I believe that our ancients made this mistake. There were rishis [seers] and munis [saints] and sages galore, but they retired into the forest, became brahmarishis [great saints] and I don’t know what all rishis. But the people they left to themselves. In the world of materialistic welfare, there are no more sages or rishis but people become wealthy or poor according to their samskara.
Sahaj Marg I believe to be the first endeavour ever to combine both, to bring spirituality into each house. We don’t need rishis and munis, we need prefects – honest, hard-working prefects who will carry this torch fearlessly into the future without thought of success or failure and say, “This is Sahaj Marg; this is what we have to offer. Don’t expect material welfare, don’t expect comforts, don’t expect riches, don’t expect glory, position, nothing. But here [heart], you will get that which even emperors and great conquerors never had: peace, satisfaction, and happiness.”
So, you see the task of what should have been the task of our ancient rishis is today humanity’s task – every one of us must share in it. And we must not count; we want quality, not numbers. But we want increasing quality in increasing numbers. Like when the tide comes in, more and more of the sea comes in; the water is the same. There is no creation of water. Similarly, this tide must go now into the future, carry this flame, illuminate the world, make the world in ten years, fifty years, twenty years, hundred years, something that will resemble what it was in Treta Yuga and Dwapara Yuga.
So, I repeat, your job as abhyasis is first to dedicate yourself to your own spiritual evolution so that you may become fit to help others by offering them this spiritual evolution.
I pray that our great Masters will bless us all on this auspicious occasion and make the people aware of these possibilities, bring them in greater and greater numbers so that this spirituality becomes something not exclusive to the few but common to the many, which is what should be the meaning of democracy. Democracy is not a vote. Democracy is a state where every individual has the same right to progress, and that right is guaranteed only in the spiritual field because it cannot be guaranteed in any other field.
I am happy to see our jawans [soldiers] and their officers here; I welcome them. I am happy that our efforts have reached them too, and I hope I will see battalions of them in the future. May they progress well. May they all grow. God bless all of you.