Nearing 8’0 clock in the night finishing her bath, Amma came to the verandah and sat there. Sripada, Bharadwaja, Ramachandra Rao and his wife Sitamma were present. The vespers (evening prayers) ended. Devotees came one after another, offered pranams to Amma. They were on their way to Annapurnalaya.
Conversation on various subjects was on. Ramachandra Rao intervened and asked: “I feel that all that happens because of only one POWER. But, Mother! the thought that I am doing (everything) crops up.”
AMMA The answer is there in the question itself. You said thought comes. You don’t say that it is yours. But, then, if a thought comes it must come from somewhere (some source). And I say that that thought itself is GOD. Or, POWER.
That POWER or Shakti is not something separate sitting on this cot. There is Divine Power omnipresent and omniscient. We say, “a thought came, all on a sudden. Where does it come from? (The one who received the thought is not the source). Therefore, the sense, feeling of ‘I’ is inescapable. Even if you assume that all that exists is ONE (the same), the feeling of duality is inescapable. The SOURCE is un-understandable, when you are perceiving the attempt to understand it, when does one get the awareness that the ONE only exists? When you realise that even when it appears as two, it is only ONE. (You may ask) when does that feeling occur? When the time comes. There are many transformations (changes) which arise without our being aware of them.
(Conversation No. 120)
When I read the original text, it appeared quite easy to translate. But when I had to write this response, I realised the amazing clarity, simplicity and the naturalness of Mother’s explication of what boils down to Monism (Advaita) and Dualism (Dwaita). But she made me feel less tense when she cautioned, in the end, that there are many ‘parinamas’ which we are not aware of (in the darkness of the COSMIC Mother’s womb – hiranyagarbha – we emerge into the world SHE created as LEELA).
Is Amma present or not in the words which I read in a pritned text? Are they of the same significance to the persons who composed the text for printing? What is ‘real’ then? The difference is: even when the book has dual existence, it emerges from the same FOUNT, THE SOURCE which is SHAKTI. The famous poet T.S. Eliot wrote in a poem: “words slip, slide, perish, do not stay in place…” Yes, they do: But when the words are dispensed with, only then, we perceive the POWER behind the words.
But should they be dispensed with? Don’t they have “functional” significance? Are they “traps” from which we want to free ourselves? Then the question of “illusion” arises. “How much do you love me?” asked King Lear, his three daughters (in the Shakespearean drama). The first two give answers that please the King. The third daughter gives the proper but unpalatable answer: “I cannot heave my heart, into my mouth”. (in Telugu there is an equivalent by the famous poet Devulapally Krishna Sastri: “bo o su “) In short, not terminating the dualities but balancing them.
Can we say, it is Nature’s Leela, the playful game of that SHAKTI? That should not be difficult: we willingly suspend our disbelief when we watch the movies the Mahamaya of our century. (And we brought its version into our bedrooms through the TV). As sage SRI RAM would say, “Bolt the door to Maya and rein the horse of the mind” when you enter the “real” world. (“Kraš go, w”) For this, he says, “You have to clean your teeth, constantly, with the Vedantic toothbrush”.