A PAINLESS LIFE? [Page 148]
What is pain? The other form of pleasure; the obverse of pleasure. . If we can view both pain and pleasure with equanimity, we experience real bliss. Amma explains this.
Brother: Can there be a life without pain?
Amma: I don’t think so. But what is pain?
How is it different from pleasure? Our likes and dislikes create pain and pleasure. Even those who claim to have renounced everything experience them. Offer the seer some alcohol; he gets annoyed because he has not really renounced his reactions. He will take only a glass of milk. We categorize everything, every act and every experience. We say some things are good and some are bad. We enjoy some experiences and feel the pleasure. We dislike others and are disturbed by them. When there is no difference between different experiences, there is no pain. Then prosperity and penury, smiles and tears, the beautiful and the ugly, the petty and the magnanimous merge into one. Duality and diversification trouble us. We treat death differently from life. We grieve over the one and rejoice over the other. God, who is in everything, does not feel the difference of creation. He alone is above all suffering. The rest cannot escape it.
Our likes and dislikes create pain and pleasure
DO I CHOOSE? [Page 165]
Brother; what is the righteous path?
Amma: Whichever path you choose, it is He, who leads you. This realization is righteousness. Brother; Can I not choose my path? I believe I can.
Amma; Even if you choose a path, can you follow it? You are not able to follow your plans in spite of your best efforts. Sometimes we know we should not follow a certain path, still we do it. I firmly believe we are not responsible for our actions. There is an invisible hand which guides and takes us on a predestined path.
THE INVISIBLE FORCE. [Page166]
According to Amma we are. not responsible for our actions and activities but are guided by an invisible force.
Brother: What do we gain from your darshan?
Amma: Coming here, meeting me itself is your gain.
Brother: But I don’t understand why I came here.
Amma: The Force, Energy which made you come here will make you understand the motive behind your coming here.
Brother: When will I understand?
Amma: When the time comes. Since how long have you been planning to come here?
Brother; for quite some time.
Amma: But you are able to come only now. Now the time is opportune for you to come. Even after meeting me you could not express your doubts and misgivings immediately. You are asking for clarification on your second visit. Time decides and dictates everything.
Brother: But what about the efforts, the human efforts? Can we leave everything in the hands of time? Then there is no need to do anything.
Amma: You feel you are making the effort. Your legs carry you and you feel you are walking.Your eyes register the outside world for you and you feel you are seeing. You take credit for everything but it is the unseen hand that pushes you forward.
Brother: Then shall I not make any efforts? Shall I sit idle?
Amma: Even that is not in your hand. Even when you know nothing is yours, nothing can be done by you, you cannot avoid anxiety. This desire to do something is also a divine compulsion.
THE APPARENT AND THE REAL [Page 169]
Brother-Amma, one doubt—
Amma: Please tell me.
Brother: Why do we commit mistakes, even when we know it is wrong?
Amma: Because, they are inevitable.
Brother: Can we be absolved of guilt by thinking it is inevitable? Can we feel happy by not owning responsibility?
Amma: We don’t feel happy and free of guilt because we want to take up the responsibility for everything. Apparently, you are responsible for your thoughts, your actions and their execution. Reality is something different.
Brother: If we feel some other force is making us do the wrong things, we will not even try to stop doing them.
Amma: The force which makes you do it also makes you stop doing evil.
If you think you are not responsible for your activity, apathy sets in. You feel dissatisfied. So you feel you are responsible for everything but it is the divine force and grace and time that decide everything.
Brother: How do they do it? Please clarify.
Amma: You pass through periods of disbelief, skepticism, negativity. You don’t believe what you see. You can’t hear what you are told. But when the time is suitable everything falls in place and things become crystal clear. Sometimes your sincere, hard work goes down the drain. At other times you achieve a lot with little effort. This is due to the divine force, the divine grace. The apparent is not the real.
DUALITY [Page 175]
Brother: What is the genesis of good and evil? Amma: The same that is responsible for the entire
Amma: The same that is responsible for the entire universe and the entire creation.
Brother: When there is one creator responsible for everything, why should there be so much duality, so much of diversity?
Amma: There is no creation without duality. Good and evil are the two sides of the same coin. So also are likes and dislikes. Respond to both of them in the same way; don’t react to any experience. You are closer to divinity and finally can comprehend divinity.
Brother: If goodness, benevolence, magnanimity, love and compassion can lead to happiness and all evil thoughts and acts lead to suffering, why can’t we have only goodness and only happiness? Why should there be a creation of evil at all?
Amma: True, but if there is no evil how do you appreciate goodness? If there is no ugliness, how do you enjoy beauty? The raindrops are the most welcome to the parched earth, not to a flooded area. If there is no duality, we don’t differentiate between happiness and unhappiness.
Brother: How do you define happiness? What is the so – called ultimate bliss? Is it wealth and prosperity? Worldly pleasures? Children? Success in life?