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


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.