Friday, December 27, 2013

God and gadgets

Today is a very special pooja. Ten years ago we officiated a wedding here at the Gayathri Peedam, and now ten years later this very couple are ready to take their vows again. I'm sure there's something wrong with Mervin, but anyway... So Mervin and Karen have been married ten years. They have two children ten years later. I pray that ten years from now they won't have four children. Mervin can come first. What we do is check the stress levels first so the man must come first, then the lady. Today we have the blessings of Paramguru Agasthiarmuni, Bhogar Maharishi, Yogiar Ramaiah, Swami Murugesu, and Kriya Babaji. So all of you will experience a unique energy going through you.

I saw this t-shirt in India that was so appropriate to this life that I'll remember it permanently: 'Life was so good, and so much better when Blackberry and Apple were just fruits'. Because, today when we talk of Blackberry and Apple we're talking about equipment. We cannot live without these gadgets any more. I'm sitting in the plane and an aunty about seventy years old put her hand in her bag and took out an Apple; and she's busy texting somebody. I mean, seventy years old: what does she want a cellphone for? At her age she should be contacting God because one leg is already there...

We are not human beings any more, we are gadget beings. That's how we live. Our life is being destroyed slowly; we have no more life. In Sri Lanka the saying is: 'This is my first wife', and they show their cellphone. 'I can go without my wife, but not without my cellphone.' Think about it. What have we become? Gadget individuals. And we only live by our gadgets. The reason we have so many rare and uncommon diseases is because of the gadgets. We have too many gadgets. And then on the plane I was watching this guy staring at the guy sitting next to me. And I'm thinking, 'Why is he staring at the guy next to me?' So I look around and see that he's busy on the phone, and he has three phones in his hand. Now we need to walk around with a container to carry all our phones.

And here we have 2014 coming up – a perfect seven a perfect Sani. I want to see how these gadget phones help you in 2014. You can't go to the gadget phone, push something and Navagraha is on. But we can't stay without it because we'll miss the gossip and the stories, and everything that is happening in this world – nothing good, but we'll miss it. We cannot avoid it so we'll carry this phone wherever we go.

When I was growing up, apple was just a fruit. Blackberry we had heard of but never tasted, but we knew it was a fruit. Now every kid has a Blackberry or an Apple. It's a status thing. 'What phone you got?' 'A Nokia.'  'Ay, outdated man.' Why? Why do we have to? And when I came back from India now, Seelan brings this thing to me. It's a gadget phone - 'Dad, this is your gift'. And now I get this phone to complicate my life more. Phones have become a status thing. How many of you can leave home without your phone? You are the very people who go back to pick your phones up. But how often do we leave home without praying? Do we go back home to pray? We just say 'God will forgive us', but the phone won't forgive you. I don't know. This trip, I was only seeing gadgets. And when they open the phone, you must see the way they flip it! We don't live ourselves any more. We are not ourselves any more. We're living for other people and their standards.

Christmas has been awaited and has past. Are we enlightened after this time? After Christmas are we enlightened beings or still gadget beings? It is time for us to get enlightened, and every day we get closer to the six by six by six, the grave, yet we're doing nothing to better our entry into that grave. We're just living and living and living. Doing nothing. Please look at life differently. The masters are only talking about these gadgets. People only have these gadgets. And to bluff themselves they have a profile picture of some deity to show how religious they are. Somebody was with their phone just now – it's got my picture on it. I am the ugliest person on Earth but they go and put my picture there. Why don't you put a picture of yourself when you get up in the morning? Because you'll drop the phone and run. You have to put a picture of yourself after you're finished with the mirror. The mirror can never tell you that you look beautiful. It only enhances what the public will tell you. Can you imagine? You're walking around in a new sari and someone says that you look nice in the sari. That's an insult! Without the sari how ugly will you look? The mirror makes you look nice for the public. Every stroke of foundation is not for you, it is for everybody else.

So, coming back to 2014: it's a year of Sani, not a good year. We've just come out of a bad time and we're going into a worse time, and it's going to get worse and worse until 2016. So it is for you to remember God daily. And once you remember God daily, you are protected by God. Believe me, God creates for you so many kinds of miracles that you don't even see right in front of you, just for you. And when one happens you think how good you are – it's really that God was there. You're not good. Without him you're nothing. The best of your experiences happen in your homes. The worst of your experiences happen outside. The most divine experiences happen in the ashram; and the most spiritual experiences happen at the feet of your guru. Remember that. If you know that, then you know God. If you experience that, you are experiencing God. Together that makes you divine.
Hari om and God bless you.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

In the radiance of Babaji

In the radiance of Babaji, in the light of my guru, and in the glory of Christ, this day has been set to remember that master, that disciple, that child of God, Kriya Babaji Nagaraja of Parangapet in South India. We are about to start so please let us experience Babaji as has already started with the wind-storm. And as we get deeper into the prayer, you will see a complete change in the weather. We will start with prostrations and salutations to the gurus especially Agsthiar, the paramguru of Babaji.

Babaji is very predictable. Early this morning I told Kumaresan that today Babaji knows we're performing pooja for him so he'll give us the weather that suits him best. That is wind first. You saw, as soon as the garland went onto Muruga the rain came. This is not the first time this has happened. This is the best time for you to feel the energy of Babaji. You'll feel it in your spine. Just enjoy it because it is the most unique energy. His energy will definitely be felt by the time we finish tonight. All of you will be able to feel it.

Everything in this world, in this life, we only have through the grace of Babaji. To those who are new to Babaji, believe me, your mere existence is due to his presence. And when he decides to block one nostril that's the end of you. To those who don't know Babaji, please believe me, Babaji exists. He is here. I could not predict today's weather, but I could predict Babaji. That's how close he is to the Gayathri Peedam. And what you see outside now is exactly by Babaji's grace. 'I come as rain, I come as wind, I come as storm', and that's how he  comes into your life. You just want to stay in his shrine, that's the magnitude of his magnet. Just believe in him. I say this in his glory, his radiance, in the light of my guru, and in the glory of Christ.

For those who don't know Babaji, he actually taught Jesus Christ the kundalini pranayama. The Christians won't accept this. When he was crucified on the cross, Christ did not die but knew the technique to hold his breath. Only one person knew he had that technique: Mary Magdalene. She knew that Jesus was alive. He did not rise from the dead. He knew the kriya kundalini pranayam technique taught to him by two great saints Kriya Babaji Nagaraj, and Patanjali. Both were his teachers. That same technique was taught to the Jadatharaya institute by Yogiar Ramaiah. If Yogiar's photograph frightens you, in real life he will also frighten you. He was a hundred percent disciplinarian. He did not mix up his words or hold them back. He would say it as it was. No polished words. He taught the technique to some twenty-five of our students. Out of those we have only about ten initiated and following in the steps of Yogiar Ramaiah. You want to know what happened to the other fifteen? They became great yogis. In their eyes they think they're yogis, but the Bhagavad Gita says that he who eats too much is more of a bhogi than a roghi. They don't come to the ashram because we tell them to eat a little. We had the sharing of food when Yogiar was here and he shared everybody's food out, and he paired himself with Seelan. The beauty of eating with Yogiar is that his nails are long, and they are dirty. He uses the same finger to put vaseline in his nose for pranayama. And Seelan had to eat from the same plate. Seelan had this thing that if he saw dirt he would spew at the same time. It's called breaking his ego and, really, Yogiar did a good job.

That gentleman in the corner, Roy; that lady there, normally known as Nareenmosi; next to her is Ashok; in front of him is Krishnee - they had the opportunity of meeting Babaji in Badrinath when we toured there. They will tell you the experience they had and how he disappeared as we turned around. Ask them and they'll tell you about their unique experience of seeing this individual who is over two-thousand years old, but looking as if he's only twenty years old - a great saint. And we're celebrating him today. The more you get into the bhajan, the more you'll experience Babaji. He can live in swarupa samadhi, without eating. The highest state.

I'll tell you about some miracles. One day we driving to Durban, and the children wanted ice cream. I had no money in my pocket. Then a motorbike overtook us and a ten Rand note fell out of the driver's pocked. I stopped the car, picked up the note and bought them ice cream. In those times things were very difficult, and I was behind on my bond payments. I never discussed it at home. I would never tell the family when we were behind, and the bank used to phone me. The arrears was over four thousand rand, and I didn't ask anybody for help. I said, 'Mother, you know if you want me to stay in this house, make it happen'. That week the bank was troubling me. We did a wedding and the groom gave me one-hundred-and-fifty rand. If I had gone to the bank with that they would have laughed at me. On the Monday, the couple left for their honeymoon and came past the house. They left an envelope with a card. I didn't open it right away, but sometimes you have a little bee in your head saying 'open it'. Inside there was a cheque for the exact amount required to pay my bond. Then my son decided he wanted to study medicine, but I was unemployed and I did not want to apply for a bursary. Even today I still don't know how I educated him. He finished medical college. The only thing I know is he phoned me and said 'second semester is due,' and by the Friday I would have paid his fees. If these stories don't make you believe there is a supreme existence that can make anything in our lives happen, then nothing will.

I just want to reinforce that there is a great existence. The Hare Krishnas call it the Supreme Personality of Godhead. We call it Gayathri; the Saivites it Shiva. Call it whatever you want: Jesus, Buddha. We're the only religion in the world that can take a stone and call it God. We have the power to take a stone and call it God. We have the power to believe from the deepest level that God exists, and once you know that then there's a miracle – Kriya Babaji. He's done wonders for many here. Babaji has done everything Tashi wanted in her life. She is one of the rare people who has had a Babaji pendant around her neck since primary school. She wears it every day. She's also a smart child. She might have traded it for a popsicle, but she still has it. One day she had a bath with it and it fell in the tub. She was so sad and I realised that Babaji lives in that child. That's all I need in this life, and for all of you to believe. Not to follow, just believe. Everything happens after that.

Without devotion you cannot get dedication, and without dedication you cannot get devotion. Without karma yoga you can't get bhakti yoga and vice versa. I believe there is a reason for everything in our life. It's the same for all of you. You're not seated here by coincidence, or by accident, or chance. You're seated here because this is the consequential event in the eyes of the Supreme, and that you have been part of this in many lifetimes, and of each other in many lifetimes. And you've come together here to join this union in the name and in the radiance of the master, Kriya Babaji. And if you have Kriya Babaji's name on your lips for twenty-four hours, from personal experience I will tell you that nothing will go wrong in your life. To all of you, in the radiance of Babaji, the light of my guru, the glory of Christ, I wish you a safe  journey -  after I've served you your meals.

Hari Om

Saturday, October 19, 2013

God is something you have to experience

Hari om.
You know, we make spirituality and God secondary in our lives. And during Navaratri and now, at this pournami, it clearly indicates that we pray when we feel like praying. We go to service, to temple, when it suits us. The time has come now for all of us to hold onto God dearly. I think I say this every time. We need to understand one thing: that this life of ours is not about just enjoying the material aspects. It is about enjoying the material and experiencing the spiritual. The only way you can experience the spiritual aspect is when you go to places where bhajana, or service, is rendered, where the vibration takes you into states of ecstasy; that place is called a temple or an ashram. Nowhere else can you have that kind of ecstasy, yet we're so engrossed and caught up in the material aspect that we forget to render some service to God. My guru always said to me, “Always get up from your little dreaming and realise who you are”. And live that realisation for the rest of your life. Because this journey that you are on now, this material journey, is only a maya, a dreaming, nothing more than that. Tomorrow morning you might not wake up. That's how this journey is. It's only a maya, a great illusion in front of you, and yet you enjoy this illusion to such an extent that you forget that you, the self, exist. You've forgotten that.

Spirituality is a state of ultimate sense. What that means is that when all the nonsense is out of you, then you are spiritual. As long as you have the nonsense material aspects within, you're not spiritual at all. Do not become God-fearing: “I have to go to pournami because I put my name on the board”. You don't have to go. It must be something that happens from within you. An automatic urge, a divine urge, a spiritual urge, a condition within you that allows you this space, time and moment. And only at that time can you make the connection with God, and that process is called yoga. To unite with God. If you don't make the union with God in this life, you're going to come back here to this miserable material plane, and live through this life again – you might enjoy three days of happiness but four days of pain. Those three days of happiness that you enjoy cannot overcome the pain. In your karma you've done so much good in your last life that you've been given a chance to be human in this life - not a dog or a rat, but a human being who can think, understand, and logically work through things. A rat and a dog can't do that. There's no logic in them. They only have instinct, but you behave like you have more instinct than the dog and the rat!

We need to wake up, experience God, and find those moments of stillness within us. And when you find that moment of stillness, enjoy it. It doesn't happen to you all the time. How often you drive from point A to point B and don't remember driving? You don't remember anything on the road, or on the side of the road? How many times have you done that and you don't remember anything en route? Many times. What is that moment called? That is the moment of experience. In that moment you can experience every kind of ecstasy. If you can concentrate that much on your driving, you can take the same thing and concentrate on God. God is not just unique He's a Super-Engineer. He engineered your being here, the way you look. The Bible says you were created in His image. If you're created in His image, why can't you act like Him? Why do you act any other way? Why can't you act like God? Because within us we have this thing called atma, and from where does that come? From paramatma, which means that we are a unit of that big Super-Unit called God. And if we are a unit of that Super-Unit then we must have some qualities of God. One of the highest qualities of God is Anbu Shivam Shivam Anbu, 'God is love, and love is God'. My guru, Swami Murugesu, lived in that anbu, and the only reason he did is because he lived through the troubles and obstacles of normal life. God, in His wisdom sent such a man to us and yet we cannot follow any of his teachings.

We, the Gayathri children, have the unique opportunity of experiencing God in guru, without even thinking about it. Just sitting here you can experience God in guru, but you're not interested. You have too many other things to do. We give you a calendar for twelve months - and the dates are right - and you will not come to a prayer or pournami because somebody gave you an invite two days before the pournami. Think about that  logic. We tell you twelve months in advance. And if you can't make the time to be here, you're the biggest loser. Some people will come on a Friday and if pournami is on the Saturday, they won't come because they've done their quota for the week or month. We need to get a wake-up call. Right now! You'll know about this in a few weeks time and why I said this. But we need to wake up now.

There's no other time better than this time. Don't worry about yesterday, you made all the errors then. Don't worry about tomorrow. Worry about today. Worry not about yesterday, worry not about tomorrow. Worry about today because tomorrow will become today tomorrow. Tomorrow we'll call it 'today' no matter how you look at it.

So please, I can't tell you anything else. I can't push God down you – it's not like a child who doesn't want to eat. We can't do that to you. God is not something you have to digest, God is something you have to experience. In whatever form you desire, God will present himself. And you have the ability to logically analyze within yourself, and experience God. That's all I have to say to you because it is very important that I say this on this pournami, and that you experience somehow the grace of guru and God.

Hari Om.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Things we do

Today is the last day of Navarathri. There are some things we don't do. We don't blow out a candle, cut a cake, or participate in Vijayadashmi. We don't blow out a candle because the Hindu religion is based on light, and when we celebrate birth we celebrate the light within. We don't want to blow that out. We don't cut a cake because a knife in anyone's hand can be dangerous. A knife symbolises danger. And we don't do Vijayadashami because we don't believe in submerging the murti. For ten days we recite hundreds of mantras and then on the tenth day we're supposed to submerge the murthi in the river. The first requirement is a clean river.

All Hindus have this power: they'll be walking, they'll pick up a stone and leave it at the lamp, and eventually the stone is equal to God. Many of you have things from your mothers or fathers, passed on to you, and you'll have one stone with a red dot, an ordinary stone. And we will set it up as a lingam. We can do anything so why should we go and submerge the coconut, figurine or murthi in the water? In India, for the first time I saw them take a papier mache Ganesha to be submerged in the ocean. They don't know why they do it – because somebody else does it. They're polluting the ocean because they use paint on the murthis which look so beautiful it's unbelievable. They've prayed for the murthi for ten days, gave it all the life they can, and after ten days they revert to the tamasic activity. They don't want the murthi there because it reminds them of the sattvic activities they performed over the ten days. We don't want to acknowledge that we are now sattvic, pure, and we no longer do wrong things like eat meat and drink. Believe me, tomorrow you should go to Nandos and sit there and ask the people coming there what they do. Many of them will be priests. On the tenth day some people even sacrifice. It defeats our purpose of fasting, of keeping the nine days sacred. They count down to the last day. Tomorrow morning at one, they'll go to the freezer and take out what they kept there. Mielie-rice breyani in the fridge. Once we do that we break the fast. The nine days are supposed to be filled with total focus on the female energy and aspects of the divine.

I know the energy yesterday was so good, take it as a compliment - I did not think that Zenita would make the walk but the energy was so good. But somebody said 'lucky the rain came, we didn't have to walk back'. So we are very tamasic in what we want to do . When we attain the state of sattva we think it is too much and we go back to our old habits. You know, we had a devotee in our ashram in the early days, and just before he joined us he went fishing, and he caught a fish and put it in the freezer on the Wednesday or Thursday. So on Thursday he came to see me and I told him to do a fast for nine days: no salt, no meat, etc. The following week we were starting khumbishegam – we talked him into participating for fifty-two days. When we had finished, we realised that we had done it wrong so had to fast another fifty-two days. He took his fish out of the freezer ten times, and then had to put it back again. That poor fish wasn't meant for him. By the time he could eat it, it was dry fish.
Life is a very strange occurrence. When I went to primary school we used to visit a place called Jake's Estate, on the beach, the North Coast, not far from Stanger. I don't even think I was in grade six yet. It was a small community of about six homes, and whenever we visited my mother's cousin we visited everyone in the area. All these years later, we have an aunty from Jake's sitting here with us, and she was here yesterday as well. Can you believe that I was a young boy, and here I am seeing someobody, at my age of sixty, who I knew then?

Hari Om

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Navarathri talk

The beginning of spring and the beginning of autumn are very important times of climatic change and solar influence. These are the two periods chosen to worship the divine feminine energy of the Mother, and are determined according to the lunar months or lunar calendar.

Be reminded that Navarathri is actually celebrated five times a year during Vasanta Navarathri, Ashada Navarathri, Sharad Navarathri, Magha Navarathri and Paush Navarathri. But we are celebrating Sharad Navarathri tonight, observed during the month of Puratashi. Sharad Navarathri is the most important of all navarathris, therefore it is commonly called Maha Navarathri.

Navarathri is dedicated to the feminine nature of the Divine. Durga, Lakshmi, and Saraswati are symbols of three dimensions of the feminine. They also represent the three basic qualities of existence: tamas, rajas and sattva. Tamas means inertia. Rajas means activity or passion. Sattva, in a way, is the breaking of boundaries, dissolution, melting and merging.

Among the three celestial objects to which the very making of our bodies is very deeply connected – the Earth, the Sun and the Moon – Mother Earth is considered tamas; the Sun is rajas; the Moon is sattva. Those who aspire to power, for immortality, for strength, will worship those forms of the feminine which are referred to as tamas, like Kali or Mother Earth. Those who aspire to wealth, passion, life and various gifts that the material world has to offer, naturally aspire towards that form of the feminine referred to as Lakshmi or the Sun. Those aspiring to knowledge, knowing, and transcending the limitations of the mortal body, will aspire to that aspect of the feminine which is referred to as sattva – Saraswati, or the Moon, is  representative of this.

To approach these nine days, and every other aspect of life in a celebratory way is most important. If you approach everything in a celebratory way, you learn to be non-serious about life but at the same time absolutely involved. The problem with most human beings right now is if they think something is important, they will become dead serious about it. If they think it is not so important, they will become lax about it – and don't show the necessary involvement. The secret of life is in seeing everything with a non-serious eye but being absolutely involved, like a game.

Tamas is the nature of the Earth, and she is the one who gives birth. The gestation period that we spend in the womb is tamas; it is a state which is almost like hibernation, but we are growing. Tamas is the nature of the Earth and of your birth. The moment you come out, you start activity – rajas begins. And if you are aware enough (or fortunate enough) sattva will touch you. Investing in these three will influence your life in a certain way. If you invest in tamas, you will be powerful in one way; if you invest in rajas, you will be powerful in a different way; if you invest in sattva, you will be powerful in a completely different way. You must draw upon these three dimensions of existence and sustenance for yourself because you need all three. But if you go beyond all this, it is no longer about power, it is about liberation.

After Navarathri, the tenth and final day of Dussehra is Vijayadashami – that means you have conquered all three of these qualities. You did not give into any of them, you saw through every one of them. You participated in every one of them, but you did not invest in any one of them; you won over them. That is Vijayadashmi, the day of victory.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Ego is worse than rust

The other day we spoke about attitude and just on that topic we can write volumes, a library full of books. I just want to say what I said on Swami's samadhi day. Life is a journey worth living. This journey is made up of people, and people are made up of attitude. Therefore life is an attitude-filled journey worth living only if it is in the absence of ego. And I think the cause of any kind of attitude points directly to the ego.

We live in this ego-state where we think that we are the only one in this universe, that everybody around us is non-existent, that this world belongs to 'me' and 'me alone'. Everybody in front of us is so small that we cannot see them. And that is a very dangerous attitude. That is the highest in the ranking of ego-attitude. Out of attitude you can make a beautiful world, out of attitude you can make a disastrous world, you can make a destructive world or a happy world. It is all based on attitude. The only reason two countries, or two people, fight is because they have the wrong attitude. And by having the wrong attitude we are full of ego.

Ego is worse than rust. It dissolves your character and creates its own character. Ego can make you somebody you are not. And by living in that ego you start to destroy, besides yourself, everybody in your path. And on this journey that I spoke about, we should be egoless. On this spiritual journey, this journey that we all so much desire to be on, we need to be egoless. We need to not worry about what other people think about us. You should worry about you and the self. Once you realise the self, you automatically become egoless, but to maintain that state of egolessness, we need to continuously know the self. And this can only be done by continuous practice. By continuous practise, instilling in the mind the will to know the self, you become egoless.

Every journey in this universe is difficult. None of you become millionaires or poor people the easy way. Even that was difficult. Becoming rich is difficult and becoming poor is also difficult. This journey is not made of easy methods. It is made of difficult methods. And our most difficult method on this journey is to neglect the physical self, and pay attention to the eternal inner self which we call atma, soul, consciousness, whatever you desire to call this state of beauty. But don't give it any name that will start up your ego. That you need to know. You should be egoless beings. That doesn't mean that tomorrow you should take your clothes off and run down the main street without ego. Ego is your character – destroy that. 'I am a principal', 'I am a guru', 'I am a spiritual master', 'I am a spiritual head', 'I am a president', 'I am a secretary' –  destroy that and just silently do the job you're supposed to do. And in doing that job silently you'll attain that beautiful state of samadhi. It is the most beautiful state on this plane. If you have experienced it, you have experienced beatitude and love. There's nothing more that you need to attain on this journey if you have attained the state of samadhi.

Many people, devotees, disciples, and people of discipline, have lost everything because of ego. Ego destroys you. Ego kills you. Ego eventually dissolves you and creates its own character which is generally hated by everyone around you. But do not portray a false senses of character. This journey is with spine – it's not a spineless journey. Many people I have known hold positions but they are spineless. You need to stand firmly in what you do and what you believe on this journey. But stand firmly without ego. Do not be friends with everybody and in that process lose the self and get caught up in this friendship or this union, togetherness, or whatever you call it. Do not get caught up in that. Just live a righteous journey, a righteous life, and  become a righteous being.

Prepare your inner, outer, entire self to attain the state of samadhi. That is a very important aspect of this journey – to attain the state of eternal bliss. I'm going to conclude by saying that life is a journey worth living. On the journey are people. Because there are people, there are attitudes. Life is an attitude-filled journey worth living egoless.

Hari Om.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Swami Murugesu Mahasamadhi

Those who have met Murugesu Swami will tell you that he was an unbelievably divine spiritual soul. He taught everything through telepathy. We never had a formal lesson but when we left his ashram we all had lessons which we followed.

Life on its own is a very beautiful journey and this  journey is made up of people, and people are made up of attitude. Therefore life itself is an attitude-filled journey, without ego. As you see him dressed here in this statue, Swami used to be dressed like that – nothing extraordinary, just two pieces of cloth. He was totally egoless. If I walk with my guru, it is my own experience, and I would never mention to any being that I am walking with my guru at that moment. He has taught me that as soon as you mention him being with you, you are full of ego. It is your personal experience. And the same goes for all other gurus.

We need to enjoy this life. When I was pushed down the chute of my mothers womb, I left behind a carefree situation, and I was plunged into this universe only to realise that God has put me here just for one thing: to have a union called yoga – a union with God. And as long as we start to experience this union with God, this oneness with God, this yoga, we are experiencing life's journey. We can be content with life's happiness, with life's joys, with life's sorrow and pain – but we should never be content with life's material aspect and ego. The greatest destruction for a human being is ego. 

Whether you are a classical, professional musician, a professional dancer, or a senior accountant, as you walk this journey egoless, you become a spiritual musician, dancer, or accountant. I've never experienced so much beauty,  love, and energy in all the dances I've seen in my life, until this morning. Every molecule, every atom, every nadi in my body was vibrating, and my whole being was filled with tears of joy – and I could see through this dance, my guru, my great master, the beauty, the simplicity, and yet  it was extraordinary. And that is what makes life. Life is made up of simplicity. Extraordinary simplicity is just a bonus. We can not be simply extraordinary. We must be extraordinarily simple. That is this life. And we must all live this life. Really, I cannot express, and I am sure that Amma (Jagadambal) will also echo the same words when she saw the dance. I watched her. She was also a dancer. I thought, the dance was the most beautiful – but it was egoless. That makes it more beautiful.

Walking with the master, dancing with the master, talking with the master, is only your experience – not anybody else's. The beauty and beatitude, love, and graceful movements echoed in every nadi of my body. I could not resist but to give (the dancers) what I had around my neck. There was nothing else I could give for the joy that I experienced in those moments. They were full of cosmic eternal joy. This joy is eternal. I will remember it continuously – just to live in a state of ecstasy, and I will live in a state of ecstasy every time I think of the two dancers we saw here today – beautiful. And that's what makes life – simple beauty.

There are a few things in life that we should know. And of the things in life that we should know there are only three things that make this life extraordinary. The first is dedication to whatever you do in life. The second is non-cruelty to any human being or animal, in word, deed or action. And the third is Ishwara – that we worship God and God alone. If you have these three, you are egoless. The  aim of this life is to be egoless. Ego actually means 'enlarged growth of the oblongata'. All those people who are egoless – they are not like you and I – they think they come from another planet, another world, and yet spirituality is simplicity. Simplicity is love, love is togetherness, and togetherness means no hate. It's as simple as that. Why is this world fighting continuously? We're fighting in our homes, in our ashram, in our countries. Because we are not simple. If we were simple human beings we would not fight.

I've just come back from Nepal – I don't know if the word 'simplicity' can define the people there – they live such a simple, content life. As we sit here, we are not content with life. We are always striving. We all want to see something: Babaji, Murugesu Swami, we have this thing continuously. Then when we've see them we want to see somebody else. We don't know when is enough. And yet we should be content with what we have. And in the words of Paramahansa Yogananda: 'To attain contentment, meditate'. Whenever you're caught in the state of being full of ego, sit quietly and find  yourself. And once you find yourself, you've found God, because self-realization takes you to God-realization. Nobody can claim to be God-realised if they don't know the self. If you have control of yourself, you won't be harsh to people, or be rude, harm them or steal. Because you don't have control of yourself, this is the time to take control of yourself. And only after that can we have a beautiful life.

So,  life is a journey full of living. And this journey is made up of people, and people are made up of attitude, and our life is an attitude-filled journey only if it is egoless.
Hari Om.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Krishna Janasthami talk

Hari Om.

No matter your religion, whether you're Islamic, Christian, or Hindu, there's one thing that everyone says: 'When are you going to tie the knot?' The only people who literally 'tie the knot' nowadays are the South Indians. But we've moved away from that. In Phoenix and Chatsworth they no longer have a thali, They have a gold thali. So that's where 'tying the knot' comes from. The mantras were recited silently while I was doing the prayer because it's a special mantra. I was asking the Mother for permission to do this. The mother accepted, and that's when I went around and got all your blessings. So don't feel that we did something new, and because Radhika is wearing a blue sari that she's Krishna. Nothing like that.

So today is Krisnhna Janasthami, and many of us understand it differently. My understanding is very simple. If Shiva didn't have a birth, if Vishu and Brahma didn't have births, did Krishna really have a birth? That is my understanding. So Krishna Janasthami is the appearance day of Lord Krishna – in the Bhagavad Gita, when he appeared in his Vishwarupa form, that form was janasthami which means appearance – in the form of God, not in the form of Krishna. Many say he was born in Mathura, but it is not that way. Someone said to me yesterday that Krishna's house is in Mathura. Very good for them if they believe that. Krishna, in the Bhagavad Gita talks about two things: dharmashaktra and kurushaktra. Those are references to this physical body. Sanjaya talks to the blind king – the mind, which is always blind. And he talks about his thousand sons. Those are brutality, violence, lust greed, everything attached to the mind are sons of the mind. Krishna is within each one of you. Each of you is a Krishna in your own way. You are that light, that spark. So today is Krishna's appearance day. In one temple they say it's Krishna's birthday. We have birthdays. We are human forms, not manifestations. Supreme personalities do not have births. Jesus was the only personality who had a birthday, but his was unique and divine. Krishna is that which is within each one of us.

In the Bible, Jesus says 'the Kingdom of God is within (Luke 17.21). In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna says 'I am that which is within' (10.20). He's saying the same thing but in a different way. What does 'Krishna' mean? Does it mean 'God'? It means 'black', or 'deep blue'. That was his colour. We have a South African apartheid Krishna – he's white. But he's supposed to be very dark in colour. What does it signify? It signifies depth in divinity, in spirituality. Through the Bhagavad Gita, the 'song of God', we can attain the state of Krishna-consciousness, not how they do in Hare Krishna temples, but in self-consciousness. We can attain that just by following the DIY given to man by God which we call the Bhagavad Gita. It is a very important manual, and very significant for this life, this kali yuga. Krishna, in the Bhagavad Gita tells Arjuna more than a thousand times, to surrender. Surrender what? Surrender yourself. He also uses the word 'sacrifice'. That does not mean you must do Kali pooja with a goat, or Amman pooja with a chicken. It means you must sacrifice yourself, your bad habits. Sacrifice them at the feet of Krishna and surrender totally to him. Once you surrender totally to God, everything you do in this life will be divine. You don't ever think about what you do, it will automatically be divine – because your general is God. How else can you surrender? By reciting the Gayathri mantra. Krishna says 'Of all the metres I am Gayathri' (10.35); the Gayathri mantra is written in the gayathri metre – 3 lines.

So Krishna claims in the Bhagavad Gita to be everything that we know. 'Of all the light I am the sun' (10.21). We know the sun. He says, 'Whatever you do, do not do it for the fruit of your action, but do it for me' (2.47) . Do not do it for the fruits. Don't do something and wait for a handout. Just do it in the name of Krishna. All work we do must be done for him. Whether you're helping your husband build a house, or digging a trench, you are not doing it for your husband or yourself, you're doing it for Krishna. If we work like that our work becomes divine. Not, 'I go to work every day but when I go to work I don't feel like working'. When you get up in the morning, offer your work to Krishna, place it at the feet of Krishna. The great Mahavatar Babaji says that Krishna is the ever light – a light that does not dim or go out. And that is why you'll find that at Self-Realization Fellowship, together with their photo of Mahavatar Babaji, they have a picture of Krisha. He is everywhere, in everything, outside, inside, above, below. 'In the depth of the ocean I am there, in space I am there'.

If Krishna is such a unique, powerful energy of God, why do we only observe Krishna Janasthami, and not think of Krishna 24/7. That's what we should do. But if I told you that tomorrow is also Krishna Janasthami, no one will come. When Krishna says we must surrender, he means that we must think of him, surrender to him, pray to him, pray with him 24/7. And if you do that - you can remove the name 'Krishna' and replace it with 'God' – then you will attain. Today is Krishna Janasthami so we're using the name of Krishna. It's only a name and in that name we'll find some solace, joy, happiness; and some of us find states of bliss just by saying 'hare krishna'. Caitania Mahaprabhu was an example of states of ecstasy. The only mantra he knew was 'hare krishna, hare krishna, hare rama, hare rama,…'. We've heard of people who've had great states of ecstasy and solace. Why can't we? Because we are caught in this material junction in front of us. We want to go to Gateway, to Sibaya, Suncoast; we will spend hours there, and in that time are you thinking of God? Not unless you want to win. But nobody can tell me you are thinking in a favourable way – only so you can gain some money, saying, 'Oh Rama, Krishna, I'm pulling the one-arm bandit now, I want all sevens'. And when Krishna doesn't come, you think he's not listening. He's not for that. You need to call his name continuously - Just the name 'Krishna'.

When we look at the Ramayan, if you call Ram, before Ram comes Hanuman is there. Just the name of Ram is enough to excite Hanuman. In the same way with Caitania Mahaprabhu, 'hare krishna' was enough to get him to states of ecstasy. For you, Suncoast is enough to give you states of ecstasy. But we should be getting ecstasy from God's name. So we need to rethink our lives, to sit back and say, 'Where have we gone wrong in the worship of God? Has God become part-time? For many of us God is part time. Once a week on a Friday; once a week on a Sunday, or twice a week. But when we've done our twice a week, our quota, we don't come again.

So on this day, in the radiance of Babaji, the glory of Christ, and light of my gurus, I pray sincerely that each one of you can find in your heart, in your being, to have God reside there, and for you to be conscious of that. If you can do that you'll come back here in two month's time, and tell me, 'I feel so good', and that is called the state of bliss.

Hari Om. Shanti.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Agasthiar Pournami

Last month we had Guru pournami, this month we have Agasthiar pournami. Many of you may not know this but August is named after Agasthiar, and January is named after Ganesha. It was named after the Roman god called Janus. If you remove the J and replace it with a G it's Ganus, Ganesh, the remover of obstacles. He had two heads in Roman mythology. They named the first month month January so we start the year removing obstacles. Then we come to the month of August, named after Agasthiar, but they very cleverly also had someone by the name of Augustus.

So this is Agasthiar pournami. There are only four very powerful pournamis. The first one is the pournami of January – Thaipusam pournami. The Second is July – Guru pournami. The third is pournami in August – Agasthiar pournami. And the next one is in October/November during the time of Navarathri. These are the four most powerful pournamis, when the energy of the moon is totally different. If you saw the moon last month on Guru pournami, you would have seen it was the brightest moon. Of all the pournamis, God has created certain ones to energise the body, to give us divine energy. But this is not for everyone, it is dependent on your karmic consequences, the karma you accumulate in this lifetime.

The greatest karma is children abusing their parents – this is the highest karma. Second to that is wives abusing husbands, and husbands abusing wives. Let's look at this: generally husbands abuse wives more. If you abuse your wife, the karmic consequences for this lifetime of abuse is 50 lifetimes to come. You already have 33 000 lifetimes against your name. You're going to add another 50 lifetimes. So it is very important, if we engage in abuse, to think about it and try to make peace with that. The only way to make peace when you've abused your father or mother is before you leave this physical body, to do padau pooja, wash their feet, and drink the water.

When a husband abuses his wife, that's a tough one. It depends where you live. If you live in Umhlanga you buy a Mercedes; if you live in Verulam buy a Toyota. If a husband abuses his wife, very rarely can those consequences be nullified in this lifetime. You really have to change you life 480 degrees, looking at everything upside down. And if you are that individual who doesn't abuse, but who just gets abused and doesn't worry about it, really you're a gentleman. Generally abuse starts from one side and ends on the other.

So please, why I'm saying this is because respect and duty for parents from children seems to be falling by the wayside. We have places to take care of the elderly now, so we think, so we go and dump them in these places. In the Hindu sastras, the Law of Manu (Manu was  great lawmaker), it is said that when a girl child is born she is taken care of by her father. And you'll see also in this life that girls stick to the father. And when she grows and marries she'll be taken care of by her husband – not abused. And when she becomes an old lady, and a widow, she will be taken care of by her sons. All the time there is supposed to be a male taking care of you as a woman. But if you put any abuse in between, really, karmically … they might make me the parole officer for that on the astral plane – I don't know.

This is a very powerful pournami, this is the pournami you can mentally take your vows and say that this is when you want to stop – from here you must be a calm individual. It's a good month to make that change. We make mistakes in life. This material, physical, and spiritual journey is very difficult. As you sit here you know its not very easy. If you're living in South Africa, it's more difficult – you have to keep going to the windows and doors to check nobody is breaking and entering. We've become very insecure so the only thing we can do now is leave it in the hands of that supreme energy, light, soul, we call God.

Hari Om and God bless you.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Guru Pournami discourse

Guru pournami is a very unique pournami. Of all the thirteen pournamis that God has given us, He's selected just three powerful pournamis: one of those is guru pournami; the next pournami is next month, Agasthiar pournami, in August; then we have Vaikantha pournami which is done in the name of Lord Vishnu. Of all three, guru pournami is the most sacred, the most powerful pournami, and on this day whatever you ask for you will get. This has been confirmed. Whatever your heart's desire on this night, the astral gurus will make that possible for you.

Every one of these gurus here is guiding us from the astral plane. Many of the devotees from the Peedam have encountered these beings. One of the greatest female saints that walked this earth is shown in the photo there right below Paramahansa Yogananda. She was a total manifestation of abundance and unconditional love. Just her eyes used to send people into states of trance. Her name was Ananda – one who can transcend you to states of bliss.
Next to her is the great yogi who can terrorise any individual on this planet just by one sound. Some of you seated here used to run in the opposite direction when you saw him. He is Yogiar Ramaiah who has been with us twice in his lifetime.
This saint here meditated for 12 years and, because he was in the state of meditation for so long, his fingers became permanently deformed. His name is Shivabalayogi. He's the one who introduced those lingams to the world. And you can in see in that one photo over there he was giving a lingam to Swami Murugesu. We have that same lingam here.
Above him is a direct disciple of Babaji, Lahiri Mahasaya. He met Babaji and taught Kriya Yoga to the world.
That black and white photo there is my first guru. His name was Gurudev Narainsamy. To this very day I have not met anybody, including my guru, Swami Murugesu, as powerful as Narainsamy. He can cause a storm to start by just saying the word. I had the opportunity of witnessing many of his miracles.
You all know, Jesus Christ in that frame there.
This is Ramana Maharishi, the man who introduced the westerners to India. Paul Brunton wrote about him and everybody went to India to see him and stayed in india.. If you go to Tiruvanamalai you'll see whites riding around on bicycles like it's their home town. They live there.
Shirdi Baba you all know.
This short man here is the most powerful north Indian saint who travelled and lived in Podigamalai in south India and became a south Indian by tradition.
This is my paramguru, my guru's guru – Khanniah Yogi, the direct disciple of Agashtiar.
Shankara Archarya is the man who rewrote the Vedanta into Sidantha - a great south Indian saint from Kanjipuram.
This is Brother Haridas Acharya. If you don't know him, then you're under six years old. You should know him.
That is Nanagiri. He was the spiritual brother of Srila Prabhupada. They had the same guru. One chose Krishna, the other one chose Radha. Radha used to dance in front of him daily, and my guru was invited one day. He could only hear her ankle bells, but when the music and the sound stopped there was a sari on his lap from nowhere.
Our lineage is from Bhogar Maharishi and Agasthiar.
That big picture is no other than Babaji. If you live in the radiance of Babaji, you live in the glory of Christ and the light of your guru. No matter how difficult your problems are they will become very simple and solvable. God in his own way helps you. You have not made that choice yet.

Our material life overpowers our spiritual life. All of these saints have had material lives but they turned to spirituality. There are two things you need to know. You can lose things on this material plane, but you cannot lose anything on the spiritual plane. You need to change the way you are – to find God and look for God within yourself. And here on this Guru Pournami, on the attainment of my 60th year of existence, I ask you, divinely, to forget about this material aspect we're all chasing. Enjoy your life but in equilibrium, in balance with spirituality, and then you'll find that only joy will overflow from you at all times. But if you are going to live a life where material attainment and accumulation is the key factor, then you have lost the essence of living.

Life is about living. Living is about spirituality. Spirituality is about attainment. Attainment is about enlightenment. Enlightenment is about bliss. If you understand it like this then you can remain in a perfect state of bliss and still be on the material plane. God wants you to have a balance, a perfect state of equilibrium. He doesn't say 'don't do that'. He says 'do this and that' so it is equal against your spiritual accumulation. If I asked all of you to write down your material accumulation you would write pages. But for your spiritual accumulation you'd not even write one line.

It is very important that we turn within ourselves, look inside and find the self. Just as I found you in the self, it is time for you to find yourself in the Self. We need that. This journey is about that. As I said to you on Saturday, I turned 60 and I might live another day, or until 90 or 100 at the most. Eventually I will have to leave, and when I leave there should be a desirable legend left behind. That is the idea for each one of you. You should leave behind you a legend, but not of accumulation. One of giving, sharing and caring. And when you can leave that legend behind you, peace will always be with you in living and death.

This is the time, the moment, there's no moment better than this moment for you to make this attunement with yourself. Tune away from material existence into spiritual existence and see how life can be. If you go to the Bhagavad Gita, in the opening verses the blind king asks Sanjaya to tell him what the sons of the Pandavas and the Kuruvas are doing at that moment in Kurushaktra. 'Kuru' means battle. 'Shaktra' means field. Then he calls it 'dharma shaktra' – 'dharma' means righteous. What are you doing in this righteous field? And this righteous field is your body. God has always said to us in various books, “I've given you choices, you make the choices. Whatever the consequences, they are yours, good or bad". Do not blame anybody for your failures or errors. You made the choices, you'll get the consequences of your choices. Remember it like that and you can be a successful individual materially and spiritually. I'm not saying that you shouldn't be materialistic. I'm saying don't let material life control you. Let the spiritual life control you. Be one with God. I'm going to conclude saying what I said on Saturday. Your attitude is the custodian of the past, the spokesman of the present and the architect of your future.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

60th Birthday Speech 2013

In the radiance of Babaji, in the glory of Christ, and the light of our gurus, I stand before you, 60 years later.

This universe is made up of millions of galaxies and our galaxy, the Milky Way, is just one of them. The Milky Way is made up of millions of solar systems and our solar system is just one of them. Compared to the size of the solar system our planet Earth is just a speck of dust. Yet, seen from the place called space, it glows to a perfect blue. Yes, on this planet I am just a speck of dust, yet in this entire universe, there has never been anyone like me and there will never be anyone like me for I am one of a kind, unique, original and rare. I am a masterpiece. The same applies to all of you but the only difference is that I became the master’s piece. I live as the master’s piece. My master, Swami Murugesu, took this speck of dust and polished it until it glittered like a gem – The master’s piece.

To Gurukkol from Cato Manor, Krishnamurthi from Ladysmith, and Balasundran from Manning Road; and to my uncle, Sam Moodley, I offer my salutations to your atma. My salutations and prostrations to Babaji, Shivabalayogi, Murugesu Swami, and Yogiar Ramaiah. A special prem Namaste to Haridas Archarya. I feel both enlightened and elevated to see so many of you here this evening, some 60 years later.

Yes, 60 years! I am just a visitor on this planet, maybe for another day, 90 years or a hundred at most. And during this time, I have tried, and will continue to try, to do something useful and good. My master, Swami Murugesu, taught me to create at least one happy moment for at least one person daily and this is what I do to this very day. Create this attitude to make someone happy. Remember, that your attitude is the historian of your past, the spokesman of the present and, very importantly, the architect of your future. Because of this, I architect a smile every morning when I get up.

My guru, Swami Murugesu, has taught me that life is like a game of chess. In life, you play the game with him. After your move, he makes his. Yours is called choice and his is called consequences. By these consequences, you become. Therefore, to be on the road to spiritual success, you have got to launch now, at this precious moment. What I am saying is: give up and go up – because life is always new.

Boredom in life happens because you think life is repetitive, but please understand that life, in its very design, cannot repeat itself. Life is new every day. The rose that you see today in your garden, is it the same rose that grew on the same plant before? You do not need a new horizon; you need new eyes to see the existing one. Remember, the depth of your character is revealed in the way you respond to situations you dislike.

Here, 60 years later, I make the same speech I made 140 years ago. The only difference is that 140 years ago, the devotees were more receptive to spirituality.

Knowing is not enough, you must apply!
Willing is not enough, you must do!
Om Kriya Babaji Namaha Aum

Friday, June 28, 2013

Where is God?


Hari Om.
I'm sure all of you, or many of you, or a few of you, have been watching the news. And we've see all the great terrific disasters happening in Kedernath and Badrinath. These are the two holiest parts of India where ordinary people can just go and get the bliss of being in the radiance of Babaji. And many, many people have lost members of their family. Now everybody, including many in South Africa, blame it on God. It is our nature that we find reason to blame. This is how were made. One thing we fail in is acceptance but we are all graduates on the subject of blame. We like to blame everyone else, and now everyone is blaming God.

A lady on television said she went all the way there to pray and she lost her daughter and her mother so where is God? People who talk like that do not understand death. They believe that by praying they'll live forever. Unfortunately it happened under these tragic conditions that people had to die. So why did such a thing happen in the most sacred part of India? There are many reasons. Firstly many of the so-called gurus, sages, and saints have taken many devotees to the regions of Badrinath and Kedernath, and they made a lot of money out of it. There was one sage who, in his total visits with devotees to those two areas, made 60 million rupees. That's equivalent to 10 million rand. But did they put anything back into Badrinath and Kedernath? No, they didn't. They were amassing the money, using the roads and not giving anything back to the temples.

The second reason this could be happening, I'm not sure if it's true but it's what I've read - and they are expecting another tsunami in a few days time, where more people will be affected -  is that a dam was being planned to be built between Kedernath and Badrinath. But in the valley there was an ancient sacred Mother Kali temple. To build a dam there they needed to move the temple. On the 14th of June they moved the murthi, the statue, and on the 15th and 16th of June they experienced that great tsunami. And we ask, 'Where is God?' There we have proof. That could be the Divine Mother. That is Earth, the Universe, showing us that we shouldn't interfere with certain things in life.

This reminds me of something in South Africa, when I was maybe fourteen years old. Where the present Umbilo Road highway is, that is the one that goes to the Bluff, there was a temple there and they needed to move that temple but, actually, they couldn't. Everybody who attempted to move the temple died on site. The older devotees will remember the Umbilo Road temple. Chains were becoming snakes and people were running from the caterpillar machines trying to destroy it. I remember we went to pray at this temple, and they had to build a road over the temple so we had to stop on the road and walk on the side to get to the temple that was under the road.

The energy we create remains. When  it is an ancient temple, ancient energy is much more powerful than what we know now. What we have now is computer energy. The ancients didn't know about that. They had pure energy. That could be the reason we had such disaster in the Haridwar, Rishikesh, Badrinath and Kedernath areas. We need to believe, even if we cannot see it, that God exists, that everything we have, and we touch is His, not ours. As long as we believe that then we won't have a problem. But we don't believe that. We believe that if we can't see or feel something that it's non-existent. We can't see oxygen, but we believe it is there for our breathing. In the same way God exists in that oxygen. The nucleus of the atom of the oxygen is God, just as your nucleus, which is your soul, is God. So, God exists.

Nothing is possible, not even a blade of grass or a drop of dew, without God. And once we start believing that, we will become better people and understand what's happening around us. I'm doing this trip in September, the same trip where the disasters happened, but with one thought in my mind: if God decides, I can't choose the place. If God decides that I'm going to collapse while talking to you, I cant say, “Wait, wait, let me first go lie on the bed”. I can't. He decides. Everything we do in our life, whether we become millionnaires or paupers – He's teaching you a lesson. When He makes you a millionnaire it's to see if you forget the times of your difficulties. And when He makes you a pauper, He's teaching you that this is what life is all about. That is the uniqueness of God. And He is not a single unit, but a multiple unit of pure consciousness. Therefore it is believed that He can be everywhere at the same time.

God is there. We are on His property. He can decide to do what he wants on his property. If He decides tomorrow that the whole world must be under water, we can't do anything. We only want Him when we have difficulties, problems, and troubles. We have no respect. When we are okay in life, we don't think of God at all. When does the student think of Saraswathi?  When writing exams. When does the businessman think of Lakshmi? Only when he has financial problems.

I'm leaving for India on Monday in the radiance of Babaji, the glory of Christ, and the light of my gurus. This is my hundredth trip to India so I'm looking forward to it. And I'll celebrate my 60th birthday in Sri Lanka. Only after you meet the Sri Lankan devotees will you realise why I would love to celebrate my 60th birthday in Sri Lanka. To tell you the truth, the biggest culprits of making sure my birthday is celebrated in Sri Lanka are Suganiya and Sudas – they set this whole thing up.

So please, service will continue while I'm away. I'm not going alone. The total number of those going with me is 14, including two infants. Sara is going with me. Shivas is going with me, her husband and baby. Vishal and his wife and baby. Deepak's father and mother. It's a big crowd. Annagret is already sending me messages since Monday asking what time we're leaving. So we have a big number but I think I will enjoy it.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Obstacles


Hari om
Tonight is supposed to be the longest night in the year. It has been predicted that there will be an eclipse during September that will affect the whole world. It has started in India where complete buildings and bus-loads of people disappeared when the Ganges came down in flood – over the past three days. They've rescued fifty thousand people but thousands are still missing. We'll pray for them and start with the Gayathri Mantra.

We go through this life and on our journey through life we are confronted with many obstacles.  Some of us live all our lives just by listening to negative things which become our obstacles. Obstacles are there so we can become better people, better businessmen or teachers, but if we do not transcend the obstacles then we cannot become better people, mothers, fathers, or teachers. God sometimes tells us 'no' and we, in our own wisdom, think God does not know what we want. God always knows what you want. Therefore, sometimes when you think you have got what you want and it doesn't work out, the first thing you want to do is blame God for not directing you. Yet God gave you the answer of 'no' but you were too blind to accept the answer.

And we all sometimes get caught in these situations, but these situations can be overcome. I was just listening to TD Jakes on TV just now. He said that instead of just stretching our hands out in front of us, we must stretch them out to the heavens. And I think that's what we lack. In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna says, “Surrender to me totally,” but we are not prepared to make that surrender, and as soon as there is an obstacle, we either want to blame God or ask God to help. But most of the time these requests are too late. You become entangled in those obstacles and you cannot find a way out.

As I sit here I, myself, am victim to many obstacles on my life's journey, but at no moment, at no time, did I ever blame God, my guru, or my masters, for the obstacles that were placed in front of me. I always ask them to help me transcend the obstacles so that I can become a different, better person. And every time that's exactly what happens. They help me transcend and I became a different, better person. Life is a challenge. And the only result of the challenge is your awareness of what's in front of you. Your awareness of God, your awareness of your being. Only that. And once you have that awareness, the result will be what you wanted. But if you are not listening to what instructions are given to you by your guru, by your teacher, your mother, or father, then you will get hurt.

Every obstacle is a lesson to be learned, and in learning those lessons we remember them throughout our lives, and know how to handle them when they appear again. This is the only reason God gives us these obstacles, or puts them in front of us. Daily, we should read the pages of the Bhagavad Gita, without expectation. Do not set a goal and then read. Just read the Bhagavad Gita, Bible, Koran, whatever your book is, honestly – and you will attain. Whatever it takes you will attain. You cannot sit in your office if you're selling insurance, and write 'insurance'. In the same way you cannot expect God to help you without you taking a few steps towards Him. You have to meet that challenge of getting up and walking towards God. And then you'll realise that you were the only obstacle – your physical body and mind. Transcend those and your obstacles will be gone.

You know, strangely, that we have somebody with us today who did not even have the slightest idea that they would go through university and improve by obstacles. And today, they have one step to qualification, that's all. Why? Because this individual transcended every obstacle. As an obstacle came along, this individual went past it, over it, through it, but did not become one with it. And that is where many of you have failed. You become one with the obstacle, you absorb the obstacle and become an obstacle to yourself. Transcend your obstacles. Drop your losses. Come out of these clothes and walk freely. Start life's journey with only one focus in mind, and that is God.
Hari om.

Friday, June 7, 2013

The gunas


Hari Om.
In Patanjali's Yoga Sutra, the Bhagavad Gita, and Upanishads, a specific aspect of our life is discussed: the effects and affects of the gunas. We are made up of three kinds of gunas: tamasic, rajasic, and sattvic. And I find that even when we are in the ashram we suffer from the influence of these gunas. Sometimes they become stronger than our own personality. And many of us get caught up in the tamasic-rajasic guna of ego, desire, greed, hatred. And we come to the ashram, to service, every Friday. If you are caught up in these gunas, especially tamasic and rajasic, you are going to go nowhere, and in that process pull down other people who might want to go somewhere on this journey.

The difference between myself and you is only this body and mind. And the similarity between myself and you is the self, soul, or atma, and as you sit here you are the only you that is to be found. Nobody is youer than you, and this is truer than true. Remember that. And if you live in this you, and if this you is true, and if this truth is you, then you are the self. You are an eternal being and you can live without any of the gunas that we all suffer from in this life.

In the ashram, what I find to be the greatest effect of the gunas is attitude. We seem to have a moody attitude, and in that we suffer, and many suffer with you because of your attitude. There's no point in doing extra special spiritual work here at the ashram when your attitude on a scale of 0 to 10 remains at 0. You need to have an attitude of 10, and that is clearly described in the Bhagavad Gita, (2. 47-49) where we are told to have total evenness and equanimity of mind and with that we can rise out of the physical body and enjoy the world around us without being affected by the world around us. This is the state that we should be in even if the gunas are affecting us. By being in this state we can rise above the gunas and enjoy this kriya of life. This kriya of life is the action that we put forward in life that can bring happiness, joy, pleasantness, and pleasure to everyone around us. But often we lack that. We just get out of a situation of total purity, beatitude and love, and get locked in a situation of pain-creating. We do that.

Remember, yesterday finished last night and today will finish just now. Tomorrow's just another day, a beautiful day. Therefore you need to enjoy tomorrow, and not worry about yesterday or this evening. In tomorrow you should not worry about today, for today will become yesterday tomorrow. Always leave yesterday behind, but the gunas force us to carry yesterday. We carry every situation in life. We just have to bring up a topic then we have a situation. We just carry and carry. Only I am allowed to carry situations for you so I can correct you every time they arise.

Expression of faces do not affect me at all because I'm an individual living with and above my gunas. You are an individual as well. Whether you are living with and above your gunas is your decision, and your way of life. But the gunas will destroy you including the sattvic guna. When you live a sattvic life, you stand up on a pedestal and announce that you are sattvic. That is living in a guna, and that is a state of ego as well. We should be living in chapter 2 verses 47 and 48 of the Bhagavad Gita: equanimity of mind.

We should live today and never worry about what we are going to do tomorrow while standing here today. We need to do that. There's nobody seated here who doesn't have a situation. But let your situation be yesterday's and leave it there. Don't carry it to tomorrow. Some of us we learn many aspects of the spiritual journey and as soon as we get into a situation that seems better than this journey we drop this journey and take on that situation. I've had many situations better than this journey on the physical plane, but I have never had a situation better than this journey on the spiritual plane. Nothing compares with this journey. You become eternal and live in that union with God. And that union is all that is desired on this journey. Life's journey begins at birth but it does not end at death. Just the physical body ends at death. In the next birth this journey continues. As Parmahansa Yogananda said, “If you are born in a painful situation it is because you didn't finish your painful situation in your last life, and if you did not finish it in this life it'll come back to you in the next life”. This is because you are the creator of this painful journey - not God not nature, not earth. You create this journey that is so painful.

You know that the journey is difficult yet you don't take the necessary precautions. You go on the journey knowing full well that it's difficult, and you get hurt and blame God for this difficult time. God never asked you to buy a Mercedes Benz when a Taz is good enough. When you can't pay for it you blame God, but you made the decision, not God. You make your own decisions, but do not blame God, Nature or Mother Earth for the outcome. We are fond of doing this - or the guru gets the blame. You say, “If my car broke down guru didn't give the right time to take my car out,” or “If I moved into a new house and I did not maintain the payments for the house, when we moved in the priest gave the wrong time”. There's no such thing. You create the situation when you make these purchases and don't remember all the other payments you have in hand, then when you have to make all the payments at the end of the month, they don't meet up. This is all attached to gunas, the three gunas: sattvic, rajasic, and tamasic. Live not in your tamasic guna. Go through the rajasic guna and just touch on the sattvic, then life will become a beautiful journey.
Hari om.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Sacred crystal healing

In the radiance of Babaji and the light of my gurus, this is the eighteenth healing pooja here. For eighteen years this has been a successful function and I do not find today any different, with the number of people here and more still to come. Since it is in the radiance of Babaji and the light of my gurus, I think it is an appropriate time now to call the name of Babaji.

Crystal healing is the most unique form of healing. We have doctors and pharmacists here. Crystal healing definitely can heal you, but only you can make a difference. How do they work? This is called a crystal wand and each one of the crystals has a single memory cell. You programme it to do just one function. All the crystals here today are programmed with one function: to heal. As I pass the crystals over you, you'll feel the energy over your body. That is the healing potential of crystals.

Here is a smoky crystal wand, and this is a smoky quartz wand. This one is called an OM crystal wand. If you listen to it carefully, it resonates to the sound of OM – it has OM inscribed on it, naturally. This is a cobra crystal. It's been formed over thousands of years in the Himalayas, in ice, and this is what happens to it. This one is a rose quartz and is very good to have at home, especially if you have a rocky relationship. Keep this stone in your bedroom, in your house - it is excellent. It brings about harmony and peace. These are all crystals from Tibet and Nepal. This is a mixture of two kinds of crystal. This is a crystal wand that you can use to massage. It is rounded at the end, and also has great potential to heal.

There's only one catch: if you suffer from any terminal diseases that can spread through your body easily, then you cannot have the quartz crystal touching your body. If it touches your body, it can increase the speed of the spreading of the disease because crystals are south pole, that is, they all have the potential to soften tissues. So if you have a condition they will soften the condition. Most crystals and south pole magnets are the same. There's only one north pole crystal – tiger eye, and cat's eye also – both are north pole crystals. They harden the tissues, or the condition. When you have a crystal, and a tiger eye is next to it, the crystal will stay clean - you don't have to cleanse it. Tiger eye is self-cleaning without you doing anything. This stone here is labradorite – it's a pendulum. It tells me how sick you are by its movement over your head, and we can heal you accordingly.

Do you have any questions about crystals? I know you're hungry. All the experts are here: Sundrie, Warren, Jo.

[The following questions were asked by members of the audience and answered by Swami Shankarananda.]

Can you combine the stones and use them together?
Yes. It's called 'loading', and is used to enhance the other stones. For example if you're working with the third eye - and the stone we generally use there is amethyst, but you can use other stones - you have an amethyst and around it you place other stones to load the amethyst, to help it have more energy. Stones back each other up. If you're going to start crystal healing at home - good.

What's the best way to cleanse your stones?
If you have tiger eye you don't need any cleansing. Just put the tiger eye with the other stones and it does its own thing. There are three ways of cleansing stones. (1) Submerge them in sea salt on a full moon night, outside. (2) Hold the crystals under running water, open your tap and let the stone get a wash. (3) Take a walk to the beach with your stones in a basket and submerge them in the water. But you might miss your stones because sometimes they jump out. The easiest and best way is in the sea. Get a picnic basket with a lid and put all your stones and shells inside. Close it carefully and give them a bath in the ocean. They can jump out.

If you work with stones you'll understand how much energy they have, and how alive they are. Those of you who went to see Ganapathi Satchidananda, saw that he talks to his stones and gets answers from them.

If you break a crystal and there's lots of little bits, what do you do with them?
When you break a crystal, the pieces can be dangerous because they are sharp, so you will need to get rid of it in a nice way. They have a certain amount of emotion.

When you're wearing a crystal necklace, must the crystal touch your skin?
Yes, but you must know your condition if you have a terminal spreading disease. Other crystals you can wear are amethyst, labradorite, lapis lazuli, rose quartz, agate, but not clear quartz if you don't know your health condition. People will sell them to you to wear – you will be attracted to them, but they can cause you pain. All others are fine – just clear quartz is not the best to wear but it is the best to heal with, to hold over  a person to heal them.

How often do you cleanse a crystal?
After every healing, if you have a healing studio. But if for yourself, then once a week. If you're using crystals on other people, cleanse them after every session. I advise healers to have at least three sets of crystals, so while one is being cleansed, you can use the others. Fifteen minutes maximum cleaning time, in salt.

Do you get the nine planet crystals as a bangle?
Yes. Most of the healing that any of us seated here require is between the sacral, solar plexus and the anahata chakras. For many of you here, these are navaratharanam stones. They come in a mala, if you have that you don't need any other stone. That will take care of everything you need.

If you use a tiger eye can it be any size?
The beauty about crystals is that size does not matter. They work whether they are one kilogram, or one gram - they have the same healing potential. They may not radiate the same amount or distance. That big tiger eye there weighs about 30 kilograms. That energy is what you're feeling but that is if you're doing a mass healing like this, because people absorb energy as well. But if you're working on somebody, you don't have to worry. It is very good to cleanse other crystals. If you have a crystal bag where you keep your crystal, each bag should have a tiger eye.

When you run your hand over all the stones on the table there you'll find your hand attracted to one stone. That stone is for you. Right now I have a killing headache because I work with so many stones at the same time. The stones load you with energy.  But you won't get that headache.

On the 11th May, next Saturday we have a crystal workshop in Ballito at the library if you're interested. You can come to the workshop, we teach you how to use the crystals, and place them on individuals. We demonstrate and give each of you a chance to do the same thing.

To see photos from this event, CLICK HERE.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

The power of the Gayathri Mantra

Tonight is Chithirai Pournami. The full moon is in Jupiter, which means disaster. In Bangladesh a complete building collapsed. 157 were killed. All these things are happening around us: bombing, fighting, killing, and the prediction is that by the end of May we'll have more disasters, and many of us, many people will be affected by the disasters.

Reciting the Gayathri Mantra 108 times every day between 7 and 9 pm, gives you full protection against all this. I'm telling you this because between 7 and 9 is a convenient time. Somehow we are free at that time. It'll only take you fifteen minutes to do 108 mantras. You must not rush it, but say it with its full vibration. Every word has a vibration, and in the Bhagavad Gita Krishna also says, “Of all the sounds, I am the vibration of OM”. John, in the Bible said that “In the beginning there was the word, and the word is with God and the word is God”.  That vibration we need to create so we don't go and rush the mantra 108 times, and finish in ten minutes.

Recite the Gayathri Mantra with its full vibration. You will have the protection of the Divine Mother, of Lord Shiva, and I say this in the rays of Babaji, and in the light of my guru. I've experienced it and  I tell you, any protection you want you'll get. It has 24 tatvas, 24 states of protection, 24 key points of your body. If we recite it properly we will feel the vibration within ourselves. You've heard everybody reciting, but if you recite it the way Swami Murugesu recites it you'll have the full impact of the mantra. I say this in the radiance of Babaji and in the light of my guru. I'm asking you to do this for your own protection.

Let's take Cliffie,  from Wyebank, for example. To have been hijacked fifteen times and still able to sit in the mandir here, is not anyone else's protection but the Divine Mother. Fifteen times. He even beat the cat. The cat still has to come back another time to beat him.

The Gayathri Mantra is the most powerful mantra. I've used it, experimented with it, and experienced the Gayathri Mantra. Because of the power, I'm going to tell you of a small incident that happened recently. Many people will say that I'm just telling a story.

Because Nereen also recites the mantra, it protects all her family. Her son was traveling from Jo'burg to Durban, and we were traveling from Durban to Jo'burg. I was in Pietermaritzburg at Vishnu, when Nereen phoned to say that her son had had an accident and was somewhere in a ditch, and asked if we could find him on the way. So we drove while Nereen was relaying where he was, but she was relaying it like she was reading the map upside down, and we were looking on the wrong side. We ended up in Mooi River, at the toll plaza and we waited there and had something to eat.

The tow truck brought Nereen's son and his vehicle there. Some of the devotees checked the car and changed the tyres so he could drive. And the other devotees said, “Come, let's go”. I think, because of the mantra I said let's wait for Nereen's husband, Heera, to come, but her son kept telling us to carry on. We waited anyway. At that time there were only black people around, they were violent- and aggressive-looking, spinning their car wheels and everything. Anyway, we got robbed. This is not the story. They robbed us of our keyboard, all Karl's clothes, and Lalitha's clothes. That's why they are praying so hard together there. They burglars broke the trailer and took everything. It didn't bother me so much. We were not going to look in the township for the keyboard. Heera came, and his son was safe, but on the way to Jo'burg, I kept saying how lucky we were. This kid would've been gang-raped by those guys. And then I understood that his safety was because of the Gayathri Mantra recited by his family.

The most important lesson of this story is please do not text when you are driving. Your cell phone should be under your seat, not even on the seat. That is what caused the accident. He wasn't even texting his mother. We won't go there. With all that being said, and we're laughing about it, that is the power of the Gayathri Mantra.

I can go to the doctor and know that I've checked my sugar and blood pressure, and they are high and the doctor is going to give me a hard time. So I recite the Gayathri Mantra while I'm on the treadmill, and then the doctor says, “You're fine”. Understand that we have this cosmic meditation called the Gayathri Mantra, Let's use it. Let us live life to the fullest in the Gayathri Mantra.

Recite the Gayathri Mantra. Find the time. Don't think you can recite in the car with your beads in your bag while talking. That's not recital. You must find the place. Make an appointment with that place daily. Recite the Gayathri Mantra. Feel the impact, know the impact.  It is armour-plating for yourself, your personal amulet. Our guru has given it to us for no cost. But we don't use it. The only time we remember God is when we're in trouble. When you're walking and kick the table you say, “Oh my God!” But if you didn't kick the table you wouldn't have said that. Only when you're in pain - no other time.

There is also an article by American scientist Dr. Howard Steingeril of the Hamurg University, who collected mantras, hymns and invocations from all over the world. It is alleged that Dr Steingeril concluded that the Vedic Gayathri Mantra is the most rewarding, that it produces 100 000 sound waves per second. He claims that the mantra "develops a sacred and focused psyche, grants eight forms of siddhis (spiritual powers), nine forms of niddhis (spiritual attributes), and several subsets of these called riddhis. It allows one to positively influence the environment and use divine energy for the welfare of the world, removes ignorance, infirmity and adequacy, develop feelings of peace, an interest in noble deeds, and initiates the ability to transfer spiritual energy to others". He also suggests that we recite the Gayathri Mantra 108 times daily, and it is claimed that the Gayathri Mantra is now being broadcast every day for 15 minutes from 7pm onwards on Radio Paramaribo in South America and also in Holland, to benefit the listeners.

You must have God as a constant vibration – total surrender. You must have a profound innate desire to love God. Every one of you seated here know the meaning of love, but Divine love you don't know, because you only know it in the physical. You don't know it by cosmic vibration. Annbu shivam shivam anbu. God is love and love is God. That's what the Shaivites say. I'm telling you to take the Gayathri Matnra, find the time, not for three hours - you are busy people. But when you have problems you're not too busy for God. When you've got trouble you'll sit for hours. The complete mantra is called the Savithri Mantra. Gayathri means the mantra has three lines. We have Ganesha Gayathri, Mahavishnu Gayathri, the complete mantra is called the Savithri Mantra.

I only want the best for you. When I go to India I've never prayed for myself. I only pray for you, and sometimes when I think that you need it most, I phone you or send you an SMS to fast on a certain day – for you – because I'm doing a prayer for you at a certain temple. Everything I do for you is for you to live a good life. I'm asking you to recite the Gayathri Mantra and cement that good life – and see how good you feel.

Hari om and God bless you.

CLICK HERE to see photos from this pooja.