Friday, July 27, 2012

Lakshmi pooja

Hari om

Lakshmi is the goddess of prosperity. And, as I look around me, I think we should have Lakshmi Pooja every Friday so we'll have this crowd every Friday. But unfortunately we can't.

In the history of this human race, there has never been, and will never be, a time when the human race will not believe that the accumulation of great wealth is not the key to happiness. Yet we see, time and again, millennia after millennia, people living lives of great misery. At times many have even ended their own lives. What happens after this? Children live their lives aimlessly, taking lives and concluding their own lives in destruction. Not only wealth is needed - the key factor is God.

As children of God we must know all about God, like a child knows all about their father. Here today, at Lakshmi pooja, we sit with a great anxiety, a belief that by doing this pooja prosperity will be coming our way. But if we don't know about God, about Lakshmi, we're far from attaining the prosperity we so long for. This prosperity that Mother Lakshmi gives us is not only in the form of wealth, it's in the form of health as well. That is what we need to look at. Not accumulation of wealth and property, but of health. That will give you all the prosperity you want.

On this day we wear red, and on Varalakshmi day Lakshmi is adorned in red to signify prosperity. Therefore we should wear something red on ourselves. We should do this because it is a sign of prosperity. Who is Mother Lakshmi? She is the great divine Mother who bestows upon us all great health and prosperity. The prosperity to live this life without any obstacles, to have health without any obstacles, the prosperity to gain wealth without any obstacles. But health is the main factor in this prosperity. Praying once in twelve months to Mothers Saraswati and Lakshmi does not bring success in all aspects of life.

We need to remember Mother Lakshmi every Friday. Many of you here have a maha meru and you recite special mantras given to you and offer kungum to the maha meru. That is the offering to Mother Lakshmi herself. That red kungum is a sign of prosperity, your good health and good wealth. Only with good health will good wealth come. There's no point in having millions of rands if your whole life is miserable. The reason we have so much self-destruction in the form of drugs, alcohol, and suicide, is because we don't know God. We don't know how to turn to God. Right now is the time to turn to God - for your good health and wealth.

But wealth isn't the accumulation of property, just so you can show it off. As I've said many times before, the human race does not know when enough is enough, when to stop. They will work themselves to death, just to accumulate. This is not what we're here for. This is just one part of being here. We are are here to serve the poor, the unfit, those who are sick, and the old. And that is what Mother Lakshmi tells you - that is the prosperity.

Today we did a very special Mahalakshmi pooja for all of you: Astalakshmi Mahalakshmi pooja. That means we are asking all eight forms of Lakshmi to bestow upon us good health and good wealth, but health is always first. All of you need to know this. We can drive good cars, have big wallets, fancy pens, suits and outfits, but if we don't have the health for it everything is useless. Remember that.

Therefore on a Friday, at least nine times, you should make your offering to Lakshmi before you leave the house. You should be carrying something red with you. Then you'll find that unique prosperity, wealth and health will come upon you and you'll be happy. Once your cells are happy, your organs are happy, and when they are happy, it means you're healthy. When we have unhappy organs we are not healthy. So today at Lakshmi pooja, I wish each one of you good health and good prosperity. May Mother Lakshmi bestow upon you all of that which I have just mentioned. Let us recite: Om Mahalakshmi Namaha, nine times.

Hari Om.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Cellphone thief

Hari Om.
I was sitting in the tea garden earlier talking to a very senior educator and, strangely enough, the topic he touched on is the very topic I was going to speak about, a topic we've killed a hundred times and buried. But for some reason, it gets up and starts its business again. The topic is cellphones.

I thought about what he said and about when I was young. When we were young life was so different. We didn't have burglar-guards on the windows or doors, the key remained in the door and nobody used to enter. Burglaries were so scarce, they were unheard of. If you heard of a burglary you didn't know the individual, they were in the next town. Fathers used to make sure the house doors were closed. Every home had a tower-latch, and some couldn't afford one so they had a bent nail for security. Fathers and mothers used to go to sleep pleased with themselves that they had their children in total security. And I see the same thing happening today. Fathers or mothers go around, and make sure all the gates are closed. They start with the driveway, then check the electric fence is on, make sure the gates and windows are all closed. Lastly they make sure the alarm is on. We are so secure. Am I right?

But, unknowingly, there's one thing they didn't lock, and make sure it's secured. They didn't lock the cellphones. A thief enters your house through a cellphone. That stuck with me because in all our homes we let our children go to bed with a cellphone and all this so-called rubbish comes through in the night when we're all asleep. Nobody can enter your house, but your children have a cell phone that allows a thief to enter your house and disarray your child's mind totally. And yet it is not physical, we cannot see, but the destruction it causes is everlasting and, in many cases, cannot be corrected. Yet I've been saying the same thing about cellphones and many of our parents still think a cellphone is necessary, even in the night. And the teacher made another statement: he said one parent said to one of the individuals who advised her against the her children taking their cellphones to bed with them that if she takes the cellphone away from her child then she's 'not cool'. I mean, this is the society we live in - 'I'm not cool'.

Listen, parents - that's why we gave you this title - behave and act your position as parents. You don't have to be 'cool', you don't have to disco with your daughter or son. This is where we fail miserably in our lives as parents. Our children download every kind of rubbish that you can get on the internet, Facebook, and whatever other kind of book there is. They download all the rubbish. When I was speaking to this individual, I had a beautiful reflection of my own life growing up with no cellphones, no internet, PCs, tabs, or ipads. My life growing up was playing three-tin in the neighbour's yard with a tennis ball, but we really had fun. You might think you are cyber-kids but you're far from that. You're just being destroyed in your brain, every cell, and the most powerful part of the body is the brain, it stores things there forever. But we will not listen to the guru or to anybody who talks us out of our children having cellphones.

The other day Steven was in the kitchen and he couldn't use the phone. I was sitting there and he asked one of the twins to show him how to use their phone. He already made his excuse by saying they need the phone because he doesn't know what time they finish school. As I told you, do not make a mess out of an apology by an excuse. He said, 'It's just a simple phone'. A cellphone is a cellphone. I didn't know the phone only knows how to dial Steven's number. You can dial any number you want. Yet we will give a phone to our kids. The twins were in Phoenix and they needed a phone. I've got no problem with that. We have excuses ready when the guru asks why. If you are in university you need a phone. But if you are in grade ten and you finish school at two o'clock, and your parents know when to pick you up – then you don't need a cellphone! Schools don't finish at random times. Do schools finish at random times? No, they have a fixed closing time. So why does a child need a phone? One mother says to me, “Sometimes when the child has to finish early, they need to phone”. That's why you pay school fees, so the school can contact you to fetch your child. We're always finding excuses for why we made the mistake of giving our children a cellphone. We say it's 'not cool' for them not to have a phone.

The cellphone, as I said the other day, is the kolavery. It is the madness, and, as parents, we are all caught in it. You must be disciplined with your cellphone. At two o'clock today my cellphone went off. It only goes back on on Monday. Can you do that? You can't do that. If it doesn't ring then you are upset. It's like you sit and wait for it. And nowadays you know who's calling because you have a different ringtone for each person. When your boyfriend phones you, I heard on the Gautrain two days ago, “I'm calling you, my babe...”. I mean, look at that, so we know who it is, we know he knows it's his girlfriend. The kolavery comes and you walk up and down. Nobody stands in one place and talks on a cellphone. Even if they're sitting at a desk they'll get up and walk around. Why? Because it's a madness, it's damaging your brain daily, cell by cell. The only thing you have at the end is a cellphone, without any cells up here – all are dead.

Please parents, I don't have long to live. I'm an old man. I'm going to go soon, but I hope that you all take the advice that I give you every Friday. I think the cellphone has had the greatest number of discussions on Fridays. That's because I know it's destroying your child. I know your child won't come to service on Fridays now. They're thinking, 'that guru talks nonsense'. What I just gave you was spiritual advice.

As I said to you many of you, you wait for messages on the cellphone when there are such beautiful messages in the Bhagavad Gita. But none of us turn to those pages. If you want to know about love, go to chapter Twelve in the Bhagavad Gita where Krishna tells Arjuna about the yoga of love. If you want to know about wisdom, go to chapter two, verse fifty-four where there's a very nice discourse by Krishna on how to be wise. If you want messages, go to the Bhagavad Gita. Carry it with you. Seventy rand for a pocket Bhagavad Gita is too expensive but we'll pay 340 rand for a cellphone. This is the way we think.

Let's compare the Bhagavad Gita to the cellphone: the cellphone messages will only come from your friends, girlfriends and boyfriends, and fifty percent of the time they are lies. Messages from the Bhagavad Gita come directly from God – there are no lies.The cellphone is battery-operated but the Bhagavad Gita doesn't need any batteries – you just need to flip the pages, and you don't go mad when the battery's flat. See the madness, this kolavery? You have to type your messages into the cellphone but in the Bhagavad Gita all your messages are already there, given to you by God. When you carry a cellphone on you all the time, it causes cancer. The Bhagavad Gita carried on you and read, makes you more spiritual – it doesn't give you cancer. And yet we prefer to carry a cellphone, these complicated cellphones, Blackberry Bold. It's called Bold because parents are very bold to give their children a Blackberry. Change now. Don't have any problems later. Cellphones will destroy your children. I see some of the children aren't even looking at me, they're looking at their mothers, and thinking, 'Please let him stop talking before my father takes my cellphone away'.

Cellphones should be used for specific purposes only - just to make contact, nothing else. But you're invited out for coffee, and the Blackberry is there next to your plate. You're just looking a the Blackberry. Whenever a message comes you reply. Poor me, I'm sitting there watching you, thinking that I should put your phone between the sandwich and chew it up. So please, people, when you are enjoying your food, and the doctor here will confirm, you should not be distracted, but we are distracted. There's one thing about Seelan – he has a cellphone as well, it has a whistling ring tone - as long as I'm eating with him he'll never pick it up. I was thinking he was very disciplined but afterwards I realised it's because I was there. When I'm not there, he answers the phone. Yes, we're laughing at ourselves, but as parents we really should think seriously about what's happening in our child's room with the cellphone. Please don't do these things that are wrong.

Hari Om

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Swami's 59th Birthday Message

Hari Om.

I remember a devotee ask me just a few weeks ago, "Tell me truly, Swamiji, has it been worth it?" The devotee looked gazingly at my eyes, and in his question I saw earnest sincerity. I really understood his question. "Have you been happy in the ashram, the yoga centre and the Gayathri Peedam? What about the disillusionments, the heartaches, the leaders who could not lead, and the students who could not be taught? What about all of these?"

I answered, "Blessed is the man trusted and sent by God, son! God has remembered me and put all of you as a burden upon me!" Then I thought of all the truly devoted ones, the faithful ones, of love and joy and understanding that illumines the heart of each of you. Slowly I continued my answer, "Yes! A thousand times, yes. It has been, and still is, worth the while. All of you have been a constant inspiration beyond all my dreams. I always dreamed to see Hindi and Tamil people brought together in a bond of spiritual unity and we have that at the ashram".

Then I thought some more and my prayer was: "Oh, Babaji, Sivabalayogi and Swami Murugesu, do you feel that I have done what I needed to do? I pray I have not disappointed the high hopes in which you sent me to work". The great 'spiritual beings' of this country (South Africa) have shown keen interest in keeping Tamil and Hindi devotees apart. They knew that, until there is better assimilation of the South and North Indian cultures, the Indian community cannot improve and they can keep control. I say that each hemisphere needs the best offerings of the other.

My 59th birthday wish and message is: stop destroying yourselves and come together in brother- and sisterhood. Let there be no Hindi Hindu. Let there be no Tamil Hindu. Let there just be people following sanatan dharma.

Thank you for this beautiful get-together and special thoughts to all who made this possible.

Om Kriya Babaji Namaha Aum.

Friday, July 13, 2012

The 10 Commandments of Hinduism

Today I'm going to talk about something we Hindus don't talk about. We think we don't have this, that only Christans have it: the Ten Commandments. We have them too and it's very important that we follow them – they're the most beautiful commandments that any religion can have.

ONE: Ahimsa – non killing, non injury, not consuming meat, not even having a single thought of injury in your mind. That means you never think, “I should injure or kill somebody”. It's the most beautiful commandment. We're saying that all living entities have the aspect of God, a fragment of God within. Even you have that. It's called the Self or the soul.

TWO: Satya or truth. When you're preaching God's word you must be truthful about it. Do not make what you preach the only truth. There are other truths in preaching God's word.

THREE: Asteya or non-stealing. We should not steal. What is the meaning of the word 'steal'? It's more than taking something from someone else. You should not even steal in your mind. You should not even think that you want someone else's possessions. It is very important. If we want to follow sanatan dharma, then we should be in this state at all times.

FOUR: Brahmacharya. This commandment confuses everybody it has three meanings. (i) Being completely celibate in this life. You can't say “I'm celibate,” and still celebrate. That is very difficult in today's society, it's the most difficult aspect. (ii) Restraint: that means that if you are married you should have restraint in your married life. (iii) This is easiest – just see God in everybody. Brahma charya - see the Brahma in everybody and you are an acharya.

FIVE: Aparigraha – non-accumulation of wealth. We should have just enough, not more than enough. We should know when we have enough. But we don't know. We will accumulate and accumulate until we have more than we can account for.

SIX: Shaucha cleanliness. We need to live in cleanliness in every aspect of this life. You should follow a specific personal hygiene routine. There are certain things we have to do as male and female. These must be followed

SEVEN: Santosha means to be happy, content with whatever you have in life. Do not think you should have more or less than somebody else. Even if you have one grain of rice on your plate.

EIGHT: Tapa or Sadhana – spiritual practices, austerities. You need to do these continuously like the yoga students. They get up in the morning, do their business then do their sadhana, their tapas, austerities. We all have to do this. Work is tapas if we regard it as sadana, but if we regard it as a salary, then its not pure. The Bhagavad Gita says we should not await the fruits of our actions.

NINE: Swadhyay - the studying of scriptural literature. A beautiful spiritual literature is the Bhagavad Gita. I emphasise this because it is a very easy book to understand. It can make you spiritual overnight if you read it with faith. Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita, as many times as I can remember, mentions that it is possible for each one of you to become spiritual. So study spiritual literature like the Bhagavad Gita, the Bible or the Koran. Study them. Dedicate at least one hour a day for this sadhana.

TEN: Ishwara Paridhan means surrender totally to the Lord. It doesn't mean you must leave your wife, vehicle and property, and go sit in the forest and meditate. It means you must do everything and still maintain complete divine awareness of the Lord. If you can do that then you can say you have surrendered.

Only if you follow these Ten Commandments, then you can call yourself a Hindu. Just as if you follow the Ten Christian Commandments, then you're a Christian. These were given to us by great saints in the form of yoga. They are the yogic sadhana that we should be performing daily. I hope that we try and follow some of them for now. Start with ahimsa, non-injury. I know it's difficult for some of you.

Hari Om. God Bless.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Guru Pournami

Hari Om.
Before we continue with the hawan, we have three people here who have travelled all the way from Port Elizabeth to be here just for guru pournami. I think when you have that kind of dedication you really need to be applauded. They run the Gayathri Peedam Jadatharaya Institute Meditation centre for us in Port Elizabeth, and they travelled fourteen hours just to come and sit here for three hours. That is real dedication.

How nice it would be if we could have this many people every pournami. Each pournami I wish you all happiness and joy. What are the signs of happiness and joy? A smile, and my willingness to share with all of you. I welcome each of you with a smile. Don't fill your mind with past issues. Don't fill your future with events that carry pain. Keep tonight to unlearn the past and move on. I divinely ask you all to free yourselves from greed, hatred, jealousy, from any imperfection you might have accumulated. Anything that effects you negatively from the past - undo that.

This pournami is very special as the gurus have come to bless us: great gurus like Kriya Babaji, Agasthiar, and if you have the eyes you'll be able to see this in the agni burning in front of you - that the presence of the guru is so strong. And they have chosen you, each one of you, to be part of this energy, this cosmic energy that you can go home with tonight. We should not carry in tonight issues of the past, nor flip through the chapters of the past. We should look forward into the future, and in that future find God. Unfortunately for many of you, you have God with you but you don't recognise Him. God is the eyes through which you see, the tongue with which you taste, the nose with which you smell, and skin by which you touch. Only a guru can make you, the seer, and the seen one. When the seen and the seer become one then you have a unique moment of union with God and God alone.

This guru pournami I wish for every one of you to somehow find this divinity, this divine intelligence within you, and take that to another level, a level of union with the Supreme. That is the main purpose, the goal for each one of us here. Krishna said in the Bhagavad Gita, “Surrender everything to the lotus feet of the guru”. By surrendering you are actually earning, attaining and perfecting your life to be a better life with the supreme intelligence we call God. Each one of us has that energy. It is the most unique energy that any being can have. We are very different. We can recognise other things so why can't we recognise God? The very speech that you are listening to now, the very moment that you are in now is His moment, God's moment.

As I always say not a blade of grass or a drop of dew is possible without that supreme intelligence. I'd like for all of you to recognise on this night that the masters have made this possible for each one of us. You are no different from the masters who you see on the wall in front of you. The only difference is that you have not attuned yourself to find the Self that these great masters have found in their practices. As you can see there, it's unfortunate that there's only one female on the wall there: Anandamayima. A great, beautiful individual who walked this earth. She's the only female saint under the lineage of Paramahansa Yogananda. Why? Generally women work by emotions and when their emotions get the better of them they can't be saints. Men have less emotion, so there are more male masters. But Anandamayima had the same qualities that the other saints have. The reason I point that out is because women think they don't have the ability to become saints. They do.

Let this guru pournami be an eye-opener for all of us to realise that God is not sitting in heaven somewhere. There's no such thing. This is all that we made up. Think of the energy. If we are thinking we're going to go up there and have tea with Parvati, you're wrong. Parvati and Shiva are here. You create heaven and hell right here. Let's live sanatan dharma, not Hindi, not Tamil, but sanatan dharma.