Satsang  –   Volume 2, Number 12: April 24, 1999 
Previous Satsang Next Satsang

The Nature of Sanskaars

Questions and Answers (Excerpts from morning Satsang)

Mary: If something has never been experienced before, can there be a sanskaar of it?

Swami-ji: In such a situation there won't be any sanskaar. Why?  Sanskaars are based on experience. For example, if you haven't been given the opportunity to experience the right thing and the result is pain and suffering, that becomes a sanskaar. And if an action or experience is repeated, it is like water first forming into ice and then into iron - the impression becomes stronger. Through the accumulation and repetition of the actions, the body comes to accumulate sanskaars.

What you want is the 'sanskaar-free' state.  But how can you throw away sanskaars when you don't know where they are?  It is like asking, 'How can you change your DNA?'  Suppose you have cancer because of your DNA. The doctor will tell you 'it is hereditary and you will die from it.'  Now I, as a doctor, say that you have 'hereditary ignorance' (laughter) and you will also die from it.' But I should have some way of telling you - of letting you know - how to remove your 'hereditary ignorance' which you as human beings have been inheriting for millions of years -ever since Adam and Eve!

So everybody has snaskaars. And the sanskaar of forgetfulness - avidya - has become rooted like a banyan tree.

But remember that the very first sanskaar you have is the experience of freedom. And to this day, you still love freedom. So why not evolve freedom - the sense of freedom - in your life, without which you suffer? I remind you that you were that state freedom that exists before the three gunas. In that state, you never get bound in any situation. You are supposed to know this. That is the purpose of my words. That is the purpose of the scriptures.

Mary: If I am Self, do I have the sanskaar of freedom?

Swami-ji: That is not a sanskaar. That is your own true nature. If you are the product of freedom, then why not become freedom?

Children and their upbringing

Satyam: Is it possible for a child growing up to maintain that freedom, that sense of oneness, that all children seem to have when they are very young?

Swami-ji: All children have to pass through ignorance. In their games, in their homes, at their dining tables, they may see that things are not always right. So over time, they begin to become tense and agitated. But at the time when they begin to suffer, they will also begin to ask questions. When they become aware of their pain and suffering, then you can say something to them, then you can lead their attention to freedom. You can give them the atmosphere that we are giving here.

But children have to develop their minds.

You can give a child an atmosphere of oneness, but they still have to grow according to their own 'niyati' (blueprint). In a child, gyaan (knowledge) and agyaan (ignorance) are both present. But negative and positive are not the same. The one who follows a path of negativity becomes negative.  A child can create negativity, or it can be created in the surrounding environment. And the result of negativity is suffering.

But the essence of the child's positive nature is also always there. So you have the power to counteract these negative influences through education and by providing a positive atmosphere. What has been done can be undone. Through Satsang, the mind becomes established in sat (truth) and in that state it is always positive: in the asat state, it is negative. Through education, you can bring children to a level, to a platform, where they become virtuous. You can tell children to be aware. And when they are aware, they can counteract un-awareness with awareness.


"Not a single atom of honey knows from which flower it came."

"Unless full realization has come, treat it that what is evolving is the growth of the intellect. But as human beings are born of the Self and are of the Self, their attention can be led to that Self."

"When I say the sense of oneness, I am saying it to one who has a sense of otherness. You need to be immersed in the original sense, the sense of Shyam - that is the sense within your heart."

Previous Satsang
           Next Satsang
Copyright © 1999-2005 International Meditation Institute. All Rights Reserved