Monday, October 22, 2012

Navarathri: Saraswathi Pooja

The final stage of Navarathri has begun. These are the last three days, and by this time we should all be ready.
 Today we start the journey to acquire divine knowledge. We started with Durga in the first 3 days, to give up all our vices of arrogance and attitude. In the next three days we worshiped Luxmi to develop prosperity and move forward toward spiritually to attain wisdom and knowledge. Today we start the three days of Saraswathi pooja. During these days, we are supposed to be reading scriptural texts and books. We are supposed to be studying. If you look at the bigger picture, our rishis knew where to designate the Saraswathi pooja – just before your exams! This was done so that you can have the confidence that God is with you during your exams.
Just believe in God. Fall in love with God and make God your lover. If you do this you will never go wrong. The bhakti that so many of us have for cell phones, take some of that bhakti and let it be for God. Most of us don’t know a spiritual or social life because we have this thing called a Blackberry. Even at a social function we are BBMing. I remember at school we had a little black book. Whenever you were taken to the office or did something wrong your name was put in the black book. If you go to any spiritual being or priest he will tell you black is a bad colour. For Hindus, black is especially bad because it is the colour of Sani. We shouldn’t even be wearing black. Yet, each one of us has a thing called a BLACKberry...
Today you should start this journey, nurture this journey of falling on love with God. I can personally tell you that nothing is better… you can place your head on the pillow at night and have a good sleep. You can wake up the next day with no worries because God will take care of everything -  your good and your bad.  
Tomorrow I won’t see you. I’m going home to Sri Lanka. I will be there for twenty days, so please continue the next three days – keep your fast and as I said just believe! That is where I started and it works!  
Hari om!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Navarathri Chariot Procession

I've never seen you all so exhausted! Even a fly could go for a tour in your mouth and you wouldn't know. What you've just done should energise you!

I thank all of you for making this chariot procession a success, and the masters have told me that this will be THE chariot procession and I think that's what we experienced. As of today I won't be involved. It will carry on with the members and committee. I won't be involved at all because for the period this procession was tabled, I've only had stress. I've got all the dates for your chariot procession for the next ten years and you must decide if you want to start preparations for next year tomorrow, or wait until the day before.

The mother looked absolutely beautiful today. In 22 years I have never seen her in all the glamour we saw her in today. Thank you to everyone who made that possible. To all of you who pulled the chariot today, if it wasn't for you the chariot would not have left here. Give yourselves a round of applause. To my masters who were fighting with God to keep the rain at bay, give them a round of applause. I think they really did a good job. They told me there'd be no rain for five hours - from 1.30 to 6.30pm we had 5 hours without rain. Thank you very much and God bless all of you.  

Just this morning I was talking, and I said, "For me, this is my greatest passion". Even a thank-you won't help me. This is what I live to do. I don't do anything else. For as long as many of you have known me I have been doing this. This is my passion. My masters instruct me, and I come out and do it. Many of you don't understand this concept of master and disciple. It doesn't only work on the material plane. It doesn't stop here. Even after he leaves this material plane, your master will guide you, talk to you, and tell you where you are going. Your master teaches you the art of silence. Only your master can do that. Your master tells you when to act, when not to act, and how to react. But you must be in tune with your master. Some of you think that by sitting here you're in tune with me. It's not like that. Hundreds of you can serve me food, but only the guru can decide who gets the darshan. He can take your food and not even recognise you. He can take your food, and give you darshan and you won't understand until your guru is gone.

Some of you don't understand your guru. Your tone, your voice, your statements are not called for. But your guru doesn't react with you because he knows the art of silence. And the art of silence is the only thing that will take you through this journey. When the media phones, anybody knowing the art of silence, will say, "I have no comment". The art of silence lets you leave your issues behind, and just go with your tissues. That is the art of silence.

I'm only an instrument and this is my love. I'll give up anything for this. I'm leaving for Sri Lanka on Tuesday for my guru. It is his birthday on the 26th. I will be there on his birthday. I will be so happy to be at my guru's samadhi place, to sit there and enjoy his energy. You are all lucky. I don't have my guru in the physical. I have my guru in energy. You have a physical guru. If you don't have a guru, go and find one. I used to say that a lot before. Find a guru and hold onto his leg for dear life. And once you can hold onto his leg for dear life, that guru will take you to your heights.

I'm going to conclude by talking to you quickly about my first guru, Narainsami. Before he accepted me as his disciple he chased me away three times. I was young, just fourteen years old. He chased my father too. His words were, "What rubbish! I'm no guru. I cut sugar cane! Who told you this rubbish? get out!" My father had a short fuse and all the way back home he was swearing at my mother. There was an old lady there who said, "Son, relax, he behaves like that". My father said that Narainsami was mad. My mother cried to go again so my father took her. It was by the beach, and his words were, "I told y'all yesterday! What's your people's problem? Get out now!" My father shouted at my mother again.

To secure a third trip, my mother cried and didn't eat for two days, so my father gave in and took her again. We get there, and Narainsami said, "Come, come". My father couldn't understand this. The same man who chased us and said what bullshit all this was, now said, "Come, come".

Today I remember my first experience with my guru. He had a bottle of Mainstay, and a pork chop in his hand. He asked, "What's your problem?" My father told him that I had epilepsy and fits. My guru said, "Nonsense. He doesn't have epilepsy. Go home". Narainsamy was filthy, with fat dripping off his face from the chop. He took a piece of paper, drew some lines, a triangle, square, rectangle, circle. He said to my father, "Take this home, put it in a bucket of water and bath him outside". My dad said it wouldn't work. We go home, my mother holding the piece of paper for dear life. She put it in the water, I was outside, naked, and they poured a bucket of water over me. Then I came right. That's how he became my guru. And I held onto him for dear life, for ten, maybe twelve years. And then I met Jagadambal and left him to hold onto her.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Navarathri: Kali Pooja

So, it was confirmed today that Navarathri started on Monday. Many of you thought that the priests can’t make a mistake, but here you have it, a mistake was made. Most of you think I am talking utter rubbish but the priests in Sri Lanka started Navarathri on Monday, and this was confirmed today. We have deprived the Mother of one day because our fool priests have given us the wrong date. On Tuesday they said that we should have started the day before. That is too late. So, how are we going to fix this? 

On Saturday between 6:30 and 7:30am we must do a Kali pooja. The only destructive factor that will come is Kali. I’m telling you because you are close to my heart and I don’t want you to be affected by not doing the full 9 days. 

Now, I've found that all of you are like zombies here. You don’t know what is happening! Today you saw them dancing with the Durga murthi, with all her weapons. Just assume the knife fell off and hit somebody on the head… dangerous! You are the very people who will say the Guru did something wrong because throwing blame is your profession. You will always point. That is not acceptable – we can’t take the Durga Mata and rock her so much without being aware. You can walk here, kick this chair and break your toe, it will be very painful but if you are over 60, it won’t heal. You will live with that pain until you die. The same goes for the brass. If anything fell from there and hit your head, it will knock you unconscious! Just imagine, then you will blame God!  We are not even lackadaisical – we are just zombies!

We are not allowed to do this on the journey. Because of this, every other day I have to shout at you. Today is not the first day we have taken the instruments off Durga, we do it all the time. And then if something happens, I have to sit and worry about it, not you. These are the things that worry me: somebody will get hurt! We don’t know how half the things are done. Inside me I feel so much disappointment that we are not awake. Not aware.

Anyway that’s finished now. On Saturday, no nonsense! The chariot will leave here at 13:30. This is the time given to me by the rishis - not ten minutes later. Anytime later we will be caught, so we should rather leave on time. Don’t say you didn’t get a warning! At 10am will be the Janda and Swasti prayer for the flags that will go on the chariot.


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Navarathri: Flag Hoisting

During Navarathri we pray to Mother Durga, Luxmi and Saraswathi, and each of the deities make up 3 days of the 9 days. But what does that mean? It doesn’t mean you must come here every day, sing bhajan, eat supper and leave. It means you must come every day and slowly change who you are so you can become knowledgeable like Saraswathi.

We start with Durga, with all your arrogance and all your problems. For the first 3 days after hawan, bhajan, and singing to the Mother, you get some prosperity in your journey. By getting that prosperity you then pray to Mother Luxmi. After you attain the highest prosperity from Mother Luxmi, you worship Her. Luxmi does  not mean finances only, it means personal prosperity and good health. After that, you attain knowledge in the worship to Mother Saraswathi. In those 3 days we're supposed to become very knowledgeable beings. Hindus do everything in 9s. In 9 days you can become super-human. But it’s only possible if you tune yourself to becoming super-human. It’s not possible when you say that you can’t wait for the 9 days to finish.

Sometimes God likes to punish, but God punishes very subtly. Partassi finished yesterday and Navarathri begins today which means you must continue your fast. Navarathri has started like this so we can purify ourselves. That is why we fast. For the Tamil people, they say it feels like God is killing them! ‘God is punishes us!’ is what runs through their minds. ‘Hey, the jol starts now!’ is what is heard in the workplace. Why? Partasi and Pitarpak are over now, and the pitars have been fed. Now there is the desire to feed the human pitars. That’s us – we are just like pitars too. But, here we come for 9 days to purify the mind. The faculty of the mind is the most destructive faculty that this body has. You are better off without mind. You will be healthier without mind. You will be more prosperous without mind. We teach you here, and we do the pooja here; we do japa, recital and sing bhajan so we can excite your bhakti, your devotion, so you can become spiritual beings. During a discourse in 1951 with Paramahansa Yogananda, His devotees said to him, ‘We love you Guruji! We love you so much, we can’t live without you.’ He sat for a moment, laughed aloud and said, ‘But you don’t love yourself, how can you love me?’

That is why we've come for the nine days: we need to purify ourselves. When we say 'purify' we are talking about the physical self and this manamaya kosha (mind body). It is the most destructive thing if we don’t use it properly. The sages, in their wisdom, have given us the second half in the year to pray, pray, pray. I heard someone ask not so long ago, ‘Guru, tell me, why do the sages do this? We've just finish Ganesha Chaturi, then we have Luxmi pooja; we finish Luxmi pooja then we have partasi; we finish partasi now we have Navarathri. Is God trying to kill us?’ My answer was, ‘I didn’t know that if you don’t eat meat you’ll die.’  God doesn’t want to kill you. God wants you to live a good life, that is why he took the meat away.

What we did there (in the main shrine) was hoist the flag so that everybody knows we are observing Navarathri pooja. This flag-hoisting also has another very important meaning. It means that each one of you have come here and developed the courage to change. This flag is your victory flag - showing that each one of you has made this move. In the olden days when they won over parts of the land, they put up a flag to say that they had conquered the land. This flag means that you have conquered the mind and mind stuff, and that is why you have chosen to observe this Navarathri pooja.