Satsang  –   Volume 2, Number 29
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Longing for the Highest

Vinamrita: It seems to me that there is a longing for that Highest, and we need it for saadhana. But at a certain point it needs to be surrendered.

Swami-ji: As you are eager to know something, longing is for what? And surrender to whom? This is to be understood. For understanding we use our intellect. So intellect says, "I am longing to meet the Space." Why? Because the Space has become the prakriti, the nature and the body, including the ego, mind, intellect, senses.
    Now, about that Space for which somebody is longing: Who is it who is longing? Space is forever the same. It doesn’t need to meet itself. Longing belongs to the mistaken belief or idea that "I am Vinamrita, a person with this body." This is intellect. This is mind. This is ego. This is the mechanism. And this is represented by "I".
    So "I" is now filled with the knowledge of this body. And this body is always changing. Anything which has a body is placed in the category of mrityu saagar, the dead sea. Anything which is placed in forms, persons, things, or situations are all getting eroded, they are all getting older, they are all dying, they are all changing every day. 
    So who lives in this ocean of things which are changing and soon dying? The one who is longing for the Space. 
    That one loves to gain some power to get out of this dead sea, to drop it somewhere, to renounce it. But because of the constitution, you cannot surrender this objectivity, this relationship. You can’t get rid of this tie. You can’t get out of it. That is what has happened to the human being who has forgotten the Space and who thinks "This is me." 
    With this he has accepted 'my-ness.'
    These ordinary words like "I am longing," or "I want to surrender"—they are just words. They can be used to understand something. Otherwise they are meaningless. 
    Sounds have no meaning. In language there are sounds, but if someone speaks Chinese, you can make no meaning. So the word "surrender" and the word "longing" have no meaning. But they are spoken by some Canadians, or by some English persons. 
    The meaning of the word "longing" is being used to pinpoint a meaning. Having a wish to possess something is longing. To whom does it belong? Not to stomach. Not to hands. Not even to heart. Not to Self who is in deep sleep and doesn’t long for anything. 
    To whom does it belong? To a human being, because a human being uses the word.

Longing is for immortality

You are longing for the Space. But you find it hard to be in the Space because you long for so many things. It is not total longing for the Space. It is, as well, longing for living, longing for age, longing for things. You are longing to possess the field in which the dead sea and all its crocodiles are working!
    Longing is for immortality. Another word for Space is immortality which is your true nature—undying, unborn. 
    But this body is artificial nature. This is Vinamrita, the nature of the body. 
    In this jeev, the Self, which has forgotten its totality is identifying that 'I am this.' This is the basic, basic, basic issue with every human being. But Space is forever free from such an effect of the nature that binds it through mind, ego and intellect and is retaining you within this body. 
    This longing is longing to be, by itself, and you should always be in it. 
    The being—Self— is longing for its own true nature. Why? Raag (desire). So this bandhan, this idea in which you are caught up, is to be surrendered. 
    Surrender it to the knowledge that Space alone is your reality.

Longing for a devotee to be in the Space

I was standing on the steps yesterday. Ron came out of the gate, and perchance looked back and saw me. So I asked, "Who is it?" 
    Ron heard and said "Ron." 
    And now we have to start some dialogue. So I asked, "Where are you going?" 
    He kept coming, kept coming, kept coming to hear more fully, because he is getting older and perhaps his hearing is not quite so good [laughter]. 
    I mention this now because [Vinamrita's] question was deep and the satsang was getting serious about longing and surrender. 
    So Ron said, "Manali." 
    "Who is going?" He took half a minute to answer, perhaps because he had to make it up right then, or perhaps because he is getting older. [Laughter] 
    He said, "Ganesh Narayan and Pragati." 
    So I told him to go happily and bring back some bananas. Why? Because I had a longing for bananas. 
    Longing. It was a longing for a banana. But longing was in the head. It was sitting in the head until some devotee—Ron appeared, and I appeared, and it all happened. 
    So it was not longing for a banana, it was longing for a devotee to be in the Space. He alone is me, and me alone is him. And if this is happening, then banana is the result. [Laughter] 

Not to be compared

Self is not to be compared with the worldly manifest forms. Self should take the place of the idea that "I am ego"  At all times you must know that you are swayam siddh by itself, the unchanging and unchangeable being. 
    But what do you say? "I am this," treating everything as real. This idea is to be surrendered completely. To whom? To the Self. 
    Unless that happens, your longing will continue, and you won’t know what is to be surrendered. It is not surrender of money and family. You got hooked by mistake, drinking F.G. [a local liquor], in some kind of forgetfulness.
    You are able to understand what I am saying because your saadhana has been so profound this year. You are not your ribs. Man got a rib from a woman, and woman got a rib from a man. You must be lacking a rib somewhere. 
    But you know this now: you are not ribs. Your ribs have changed. And all your blood cells have changed. Your nerves have changed. Your eyes and their beauty have changed. Your face and hair and your shoulders have changed. And now you are aware that "Swami-ji has changed my view, and I am at a loss to know what to do."

Not much time

One day I asked Dikpal how many more years he will do this. He is 56 years old.
He said, "Forty-four." 
He says forty-four years, but there are really only twenty two because half the years are nights. So there is not much time left for you to understand your true nature, and you want freedom.  
    But this knowledge of freedom is not understood by the intellect. It is not grasped by the mind. 
    Even the little child knows his own freedom, though he is not yet developed in ego, intellect or mind. Why? It is his true nature. 
    And it is your true nature. 
    Even a baby doesn’t go to wrong people. He cries. So he knows freedom. 
    And you also know freedom. 
    But what is happening? Everyone feels he is tied somewhere in this pot the body. This is the nature which has got us caught. It should be "I am forever free. I am the spark of immortality,  I am immortal." But what happened to that? It is all the opposite: "I am getting old." The eternal being is saying, "I am getting old!" Now who can teach that!

The consciousness of truth

Every day you meditate, do some exercise and devote time, but you don’t get anything. I meditate and I get bananas. [laughter] 
    What does this mean? 
    You are sacrificing and surrendering your consciousness, but your consciousness is tied to the body, whereas it should be consciousness of the truth, of knowledge, of love. 
So much you have, but it is only consciousness of the body, and consciousness of status, name and fame—it’s called this personality.
    Who is supposed to check this if not you? 
    You should check that: "I have never become muddy, silly, agitated, small; I have never become all that which I feel daily." Who will know this?—that is vivek
    But if Vivek thinks, "Kootenay Bay is going to save me," or "That big monkey is going to save me," then it’s not vivek. It’s raag. Raag is that you forget what will emancipate you—knowledge of your own true nature, the Knower.

Ignorance is to be surrendered

If you don’t meditate on the Knower, or even when meditating you think, "I am meditating"... No! Knower is doing everything.
    This is the surrender. All this ignorance is to be surrendered. All that on which you are depending all the time is to be surrendered.     Without the things you think, you can’t survive. And after body passes, nothing survives. Longing is for Oneness to be there. Ignorance is to be finished and vivek, or knowledge of your true nature, is to be arrived at in one satsang or two satsangs, or in millions of years..
    And now you can figure out what I have said. But concisely, it is this: When did you become Ann Lardner? 
    Brenda and Geoffrey [her parents] made you. And now how many relations are you tied to? This is to be surrendered—this knowledge that "I am bound." 
    You become aware that you have never become bound. You are the free being.

Forever the Shyam sunshine

Everybody knows freedom. Why? It’s not intellect’s job, it is freedom’s job. And freedom is your Self. 
    You say you are free when you throw away clothes or relations. But that’s not freedom. 
    You are sunshine. Did the sunshine become bound when it fell on this table? So surrender is to come to know that I am forever the Shyam sunshine. 
    When this will come, you will be surrendered. 
    You have come on earth to know that freedom you are. You are first tied to an egg, then to so many things, but you are you, forever you.
    Now here is your test. I say, "You are you." But on which photograph has your attention gone? On this body. But I mean your true nature.
    So you practice. It’s not practice like walking in a room. You practice yog. Yog is you. Yog is samtaa, and sam you are, never up, never down, never born, never dead. That sam yog, that is practice. And you do only action, karm, and yog is not there. But yog is you. 
    You need to practice that "you" as I have said and about which I have given information as a guru. And guru is that which knows the truth. 
    You don’t have the knowledge of guru. Therefore whatever he says, you think it is just an old man with a beard speaking. Once you know whom you are listening to, you will have faith and trust that he is right. All this bony structure, and all that is glued to it, will not be there. 
    So attachment is to be surrendered, and detachment or freedom is to be known.
    So I appeal to you always, every day. Whenever I come, I say, "Good morning, folks." I am awakening you.
    Good is that which is your true nature. So if in the morning you do not remember that good which never changes, your good turns into bad. Your good turns into success and its opposite, failure. Your health turns into its opposite, disease. And this is duality. 
    If you address the sky as you, it will be you. And if you address the earth as you, it will be you. Change the words, but 'you' never changes. 
    And you have to practice this in your meditation. All else is courtesy.
In England all is courtesy and mannerism. There you have to be well-mannered. You don’t want to offend anyone. So you keep offending your Self. That is mannerism. Somewhere, somehow, you have to understand this. 

Know that you have never been bound

So you have to let me know what you are. Tell me, what is your deepest desire?

Vinamrita: I want to be just totally free.

Swami-ji: Yes. So just know now you have never been bound. How simple. That’s all. You are never, never bound. You are that sunshine which will never be bound just because it falls on this table. You can’t bind it.
   So I say, "Look, do anything, but why feel bad?" Why do you feel bad when somebody comes? Why do you feel bad when your milk boils over and puts out the gas burner? Why do you feel bad if someone comes and asks you why you are still in bed at noon when satsang is going on? Why do you feel bad if someone is angry? 
    It is because you have never known that you are the free being. You feel bad because you feel bound, and you’ve never been told that you are forever free. 
    You are forever free. But you think you’re a body and you try to express your freedom by flying, and end up falling and dying.
    Human beings are endowed with viparya buddhi, which is inverted knowledge—the opposite of truth. 
    If you have intense longing, why would you not be free? Freedom knows that "My little spark is longing to be with me." And God knows that you are never separate. You keep saying, "I have great longing, great suffering, great eagerness to meet you, Lord." And the Lord says, "I am already there. I have never left!"

You are free in this moment

This body is just like a chair that you are sitting in, but you are not the chair. This is the basic mistake, and no one corrected it. People call you body, and they need you to do their work. You can’t get out of it. The memory of it is with you. 
    Memory is not from your intellect, because you forget everything. Your own ego sense says, "I am this body." Do you ever forget this? With intellect you are likely to forget such an idea. But if you have owned the idea, then you have to correct it. But you do not correct it. You never say you are free.
    But you are free in this moment. 

Just surrender it

So what have you come to know at this time after such a long talk?
    These girls who have come and who have done so much [referring to Anuraadha and Jyoti Shakti who had just arrived] have done it all for freedom. 
    If they know they are already free, they are non-doer. Moksh [liberation] has been picked up, not because you are intellectually alert but because you are that. 
    If you made a mistake, you should not hold on to it. You should just surrender it. But you can’t let it go. 
    I have learned so many Gita verses, but I can hardly remember one. Why? Because I let go. [laughter].

    But we do not say you are not the body.
But still people say, "I belong to Canada." Everybody thinks, "I belong to this." 
    You can say, "I am a Canadian," because you have to deal with the practical realities. But you don’t say, "I am a 'bodyian'!" You became body. That’s the problem. The power of retention

I’m glad that you are at a stage where you can understand. But you don’t have dharana shakti, the power of retention—that is your problem. And wanting freedom is not a road that will come.
    Someone asks, "Where is the road going?" 
    "To Manali."     
    But the road is never going. To human beings it has happened that the Space—vivek— is going. If that is happening, you need to be very careful with your views about concepts, ideas and authenticities. Body is going to the graveyard! 
    If anyone wants to be bound, I’ll run away. But all of you are the knowers of that freedom, so you are my dearness. You are like my own boys and girls. They don’t want to go anywhere. You try, any one of you, to kidnap them! You just try to get them away. They will laugh. [laughter]
    I talk because I have to talk. It’s a practical reality. And you have to have understood something by now. So either leave the seat and go, or say something.

Vinamrita: Thank you, Swami-ji. Yes, I’ve understood.

Swami-ji: Yes. One talk is enough for your life.


"They are worried about Y2K. Take the human beings away, and there will be no problem of Y2K. 
    When Y2K was not there, were you not alright?"

Can transcendence be practiced?

Aatma: In the Gita, Krishna says "The one who transcends the influence of the three gunas attains my true nature, the bliss." 
    Is transcendence something one can practice or is it a final state?

Swami-ji: It is a talk between two people, Krishna and Arjun. So when you read Gita you’ll find that Arjun is a symbol, the representative of humanity as a whole, and he wants to be free from his ideas of birth and death. He is involved and he wants to be free from that state of being caught in true and untrue, right and wrong.
    The state had overwhelmed him, being a warrior, a son, a brother, a husband, a father, a disciple, and a relation to his grandpa, to his teacher, to his uncles. All were there. 
    Now, he never thought that he could be so helpless, a 75-year-old warrior. In that era, they must have been very young at seventy-five! But he couldn’t lift his bow with which he had to fight, and everything fell down. Such a state of paralysis had so overtaken him that he sought help from Krishna, asking, "What is it that has happened to me?"
    Now Krishna knew, but he couldn’t tell him the way others do: "Don’t worry, it’ll be alright. You just act." Instead he had to manage, making Arjun an instrument under his care, to give the knowledge to humanity as a whole for ages and ages to come. 
    So when Krishna answered, he knew he would have to say what these three gunas—these powers—are and why he’s not aware of them, he would have to say that the body is made of these three gunas, and he would have to tell him who is the 'he' that is free of these three.
    Read the verse again.

Never bound by the wheel of birth and death

Aatma: "Having transcended the influence of the three gunas which are the cause of material existence, the soul attains the Supreme Bliss of My true nature. He becomes a free being, is never bound by the wheel of birth and death, and never suffers the pain of old age" [Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 14, Verse 20].

Swami-ji: Krishna knows the fact. He is a perfect guru. He wanted to tell Arjun that these three gunas have made a person a person with name and form attached to him. Therefore these gunas create the birth of anything, anybody. They also make that person move in time and space, and put an end to him in the long run, death. 
    So who becomes free? It is the one who isn’t found on the level of such an idea that he is a body. Body covers him, but he is not body. 
    A space in a jar may say, "I am a jar because the jar covers me." Arjun was caught by this knowledge. It is called knowledge even though it is its opposite—ignorance. Transcendence should be opposite to this knowledge.
    So there are two things that a human being knows: knowledge and ignorance. But where did they come from? Arjun didn’t know. And this verse leads us to figure out what this transcendence is that Krishna is speaking of.

The power of the gunas

Suppose you are forty-two years old, and next year you’ll be forty-three. Now if you know that birth and death belong to the body or come to the body, and you occupy this body, it means you are totally foreign to this body or rather, the body is totally foreign to you. 
    It means there is no relation between you and the three gunas, or the body. Arjun saw his body and others. But he couldn’t figure out how the gunas will be transcended so he can be free—free from birth and death.
    Therefore the gunas are to be checked. 
    This verse isn’t enough for you to understand because the gunas are not known. They are three powers that emanate from a seed. The seed sprouts. You see form of the seed and form of the sprout, but you don’t see the three powers that are the source of this manifestation. 
    So these powers are subtlest powers, the gunas, the modifications of nature that make material forms appear, change, give longevity, and then disappear. All this is the field of the three gunas
    The whole banyan tree is the manifestation of one little seed—one little seed of prakriti which is consisting of these three powers. They operate, and we don’t understand. 
    Yet we want to understand. So Arjun keeps asking. Fourteen chapters have passed and he still doesn’t know the gunas and he doesn’t know how to transcend. He thinks if he jumps from here to there, whatever is in between will have been transcended.

To whom does the transcendence belong?

Aatma: Is transcendence just something you practice, like "I am this Self"?

Swami-ji: No. So the meaning of transcendence isn’t coming to you.
    Suppose Shruti transcended worry. When he is here, he doesn't worry about how many people cried at the airport because he left. You ask him how he transcended. 
    And now you: You’ve transcended the feelings of pain and suffering of seeing your father getting into trouble. You have transcended the pain in your back. To whom does this transcendence belong? To the saadhak, to the one following the path of yog. So where s that yogi in you? In your head? No. In your back? No. Where is that yogi?

Aatma: In my awareness.

Swami-ji: Yes. So you should realize or know that awareness is forever awareness. 
    Where did it get attached to this Aatma body? Today you used the word awareness. What is that? Not your eyes, not your nose, not your ears. It’s totally separate from that which is being described. So what is awareness? It became crystallized and became a person. Then he can’t transcend.

Freedom is not  a person

So what is transcendence for a yogi? It is when a yogi or a person is no longer attached to his ignorant side of awareness—the crystallized form of body. 
    A seed says, "I am a banyan tree." At any time the seed coming from the banyan tree always knows that it is the seed. That is transcendence.
    When the three gunas have made your mind, then we understand it and use the language. But if you don’t understand, then there is nothing to talk about. 
    Awareness is not your skin and bones and eyes and nose and ears. So awareness is totally separate from all that is being described. But how did awareness become all this? Arjun wants to know this.
    Arjun is afraid and is not able to do his duty. Krishna says, "Transcend." 
    Arjun says, "I don’t know how." 
    So Krishna says, "Then you’re not my devotee unless you transcend." 
    Arjun says, "Well look, I’m asking for help." 
    Krishna says, "Well, you’re not my disciple; you’re not going to know me, the freedom."
    So freedom is not a person. It is being. But we think it’s our nose and ears and bow and arrow and person and victory and defeat. There the awareness is caught. 
    Krishna says, "Transcend, man! You’re seated at a wrong place."
    And Arjun says, "I do not know how." 
    So Krishna says, "If you transcend, you’ll be free from birth and death." And this always appeals to a human being because he doesn’t want to die. 
    Arjun didn’t want to fight a war because he was seeing his death. So in order to help him get out of the 'fixity' of his thinking, Krishna was wanting him to let go. But it was not within his hands to let go. So what can you do!

Know you are forever free

It is the power of rajogun and tamogun that has overshadowed, and the brightness of sattwa is not coming. 
    So Krishna says, "Well then, give up the influence of tamogun. If you can’t transcend all three, then at least transcend one. Be active!" So he pointed out to Arjun that Arjun was in the body, and his seat was the intellect. And he said "I am," and this is his ego-seat. 
    Arjun said, "I want to be free of this and that." 
    Krishna said, "Then you have to stretch your bound personality which is ego, intellect and mind, and know you are forever me—Krishna. And if you know this then you have transcended." And this is the same for everyone, for all times.
    You are a body now. And having got this body, the machine, it doesn’t match with you. You have all that. But why do you say, "I am all that?" 
    So Krishna says, "Can you transcend these three gunas, this idea that I am some bulk? Transcend! Have the knowledge that you are the Space. Why don’t you include this?"
    Listening to Krishna, Arjun says, "Somewhere this guru is saying the right thing." But he can’t believe, because Krishna was his friend.

Whatever makes you free—you do that!

If you don’t know that Krishna is within me, guru is within me, you can’t transcend.
    Krishna wants to say, "Transcend your ego and you are liberated." 
    Why? Because you are not even born. I keep saying this. But I don’t know what you are getting. And I am saying this every single day. I am knowing and I am telling people daily that H2O makes water. But if you don’t practically make it, you will never know. And if you don’t transcend practically and you keep sitting in a chair in satsang, then you are not going to be free. 
    Transcendence is this: You have always been you, the Krishna. You have always been the One. That’s all. 
    Now how would you get that?
    A coin has two sides, but its value is one. This vision of two is the gunas. Due to the gunas we, the human beings, have become like that. And we are not getting rid of the qualities of these gunas. People want to be very good, the quality of sattwa. Very good. But it is still bound. You’ll be very good when you are free. And free is neither good nor bad. You are always yog, yogi, united.
    Whenever you don’t understand, treat it that you fell down from heaven. Arjun doesn’t understand, so Krishna should not chide him for nothing. 
    I say, "Whatever makes you free, you do that." 
    You have to use your skull with skill!

14 December 1999

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