(continued from last issue)
- 54. The exposition makes the world of Vedanta practicable. It is generally believed that in order to be deeply spiritual, one has to be a renunciate. What are Amma’s views on this?
- One can take hints from Amma’s life on the issue you raised. Amma herself married, bore children and discharged the duties of a house wife diligently, as is evident from what we have been discussing all along! In Amma’s view, ‘merging of the individual soul in the Absolute, is marriage’. Spiritual progress may be attained through Grihastasrama’ also.
- 55. Coming to those ardent aspirants who renounce and do Sadhana to attain God, what are indications? Amma’s
- Sanyasam (renunciation) is equipoise. It is not holding on to certain things, rejecting some other things, assimilating only certain concepts and living in a limited circle with indifference to people around. Even while staying in the world, reconciling with the other-worldly, experiencing happiness in physical, mental and spiritual planes and living life in a joyful manner is what Sanyasam is. The state of Sanyas should enjoin the mind with the constant thought of Parabrahma and enable one to experience with happiness an ideal life which should inspire others.
Sanyas should make the world move from a state of mental disharmony (Vaikalyam) to the unique state of Kaivalyam. Amma said, What you do cannot be an offering dear! Whatever you do has to be done with the sense of offering. In a similar vein, Amma said, “Is there something like taking Sanyas? What is needed is to remain a Sanyasi”.
According to Amma, mental renunciation is paramount!
Amma’s Samanyas (equanimous disposition) does not keep out any one different from her. Dog, cat, snake, cow, mosquito, ignorant one. learned one, Sadhaka, researcher, jnani, vijnani, birth, death etc. are all in thought process but do they exist? All that is Atman! In this no one has any role and involvement. With this exposition, Amma exhibited a balanced display.
Sanyas is the coordination of all acts!
- 56. We hear that by intense Sadhana, Kundalini is awakened and the Sadhaka attains higher states. What did Amma say on the awakening of Kundalini?
- Kundalini is always doing his work. You are not awakening to it. When they speak of Chakras, it does not mean that there are actual discs in the body which must be traversed. A Chakra is not a disc but a state.
- 57. What about various types of Samadhi? I understand that Amma is said to be in Sahaja Samadhi or Sahaja Sthithi. Whether Amma elaborated on these aspects?
- In her words “The Shakti which does all this i.e.,hears, sees, understands etc. When confined to a body is called a mind When it is regarded as unlimited and unbounded, we name it Atman. There is no state without thoughts. In Sahaja samadhi, – (which I consider to be only Samadhi), also the mind is present. What else exists apart from mind? When sameness exists at all times, it is called Sahaja Samadhi. That which neither comes nor goes, has neither ups nor downs is called Sahaja Samadhi. You may say many things, hear many sounds and do many acts but the state where you feel that all these are One is called Sahaja Samadhi.
Nirvikalpa Samadhi is said to be a state where thought is non-existent. They call it Mano-Nasa. But how can the mind be annihilated when it is all that exists? No. by Mano-Nasa, they mean that the feeling “I am not the doer; I am not the observer, has arisen. Both mean the same. Whether it is called Mano Nasa or Chitta Vritti Nirodha, it is only to say ‘I am not the one doing all this…’ But even then the mind exists.
- 58. Amma seems to have assured that Salvation is for all… of course, with a time lag. This profound statement while giving hope on one hand, creates an element of doubt in the mind of an ordinary person. How Amma’s statement has to be understood?
- This needs an elaborate explanation…Amma says ‘salvation is for all… of course with a time lag! After taking birth salvation is imminent for all indicating the eligibility for everyone irrespective of caste, creed or religion. The letter Ja’ in ‘Jagath’ (world) indicates arising while Gath means which will be gone. Thus the world will manifest and unmanifest cyclically. It has a pace, rhyme and momentum. It also has the character to dissolve. The Jiva who is the miniature reflection of the Jagath’ has also all these. Taking birth, existing and existing is a continuous process. Along with all these, Jiva has a mind. It is the mind which can direct towards salvation or keep one immersed only in the world of goods. By following many spiritual Sadhanas and controlling the mind, one has to progress towards the path of liberation which is the real Sadhana. In course of time one gains momentum and some day achieves liberation. When the ‘Jagath’ is going on in a unique way, the ‘Kartha’ who is the cause is remaining a spectator, like the thread in a garland. It is a very wonderful Triputi. Mind is also the cause to attain salvation. For the mind which transcended caste and creed, there is no differentiation as to the quality or caste and hence Amma said that salvation is for all! After all, the meaning of salvation (sugathi) is a ‘good state’. The state of mind which is unpolluted and is full of Love may be taken to be Sugathi! The mind which is compassionate towards all beings and nature which showers affection such a mind dwells in the state of Sugathi. This state is not beyond reach. But all have to be in the awareness that it is reachable. The quest has to start at this point. The quest at the end should result in knowing oneself. That is Sugathi. When it is said that it happens a little sooner or a bit later, there is assurance that it would fructify, and cautions that one will be left behind if Sadhana is not done properly and meaningfully. Some spend lives, some more lead and only a few really live. Sadhakas are those who recognize life’s limitations, its strength and weakness. Those who cleanse their mind enjoy unbridled happiness and abide in Atma even without being conscious that they are doing Sadhana and that they are in the state of Sugathi! Sugathi is not a state of comfort and is supposed to be experienced after death. Those who overcome desire, always content and who create happiness to others by their very existence and wholesome personality – their state is Sugathi! When offering, surrender and humility become the three strands of the garland, what is experienced by the mind is Sugathi! “Look at everyone with the same Bhava. Think that they are not different from you. Be happy as long as you exist. Do not harm anyone. Do not get involved in anything. Be natural. To be bound is unnatural. To be free is natural. Is there any Sugathi other than this? How can a state be Sugathi when it cannot be attained by all?”… said Amma! However, for Amma there is no forward or backward dimension. It is all in the state of existence.
(to be continued)