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Vidura Neethi - 1

By Chitra Devraj

WHO IS VIDURA?
Vidura was half brother to Dhrithrashtra and Pandu. He was a son of a maid-servant who served the queens of Hastinapura, Ambika and Ambalika. He was an incarnation of Yama or Dharma Raja.

Both queens were married to Vichitraveerya of Hastinapur, who died childless. Vichitraveerya's mother Sathyavathi was anxious to ensure that the royal line was carried on. She called upon her son Vyasa, to go to the beds of the two queens to father children. Vyasa was a hermit and came to the palace, unkempt as he was. He went to Ambika who closed her eyes when she saw him and to Ambalika who became pale in seeing Vyasa. Hence the children they bore were blind and weak. When Sathyavathy asked Vyasa to go to Ambalika's bed again, to ensure that there would be children, Ambalika placed the maid servant instead in her bed. The maid-servant was not frightened. Hence her son was not born flawed like his half-brothers. Thus VIDURA was born who was raised as brother of Drithrashtra and Pandu. His teacher was Bheeshma.

Because he was not born to the royal blood, he served as a minister to his brothers.

WHAT IS THE GREATNESS OF VIDURA?


Vidura is known for his bhakthi for Krishna. Both he and his wife loved Krishna very deeply. He is one among the seven people in Mahabharat who knew Krishna as the lord of the universe. (When king Duryodhana offered Krishna a stay in his stately guest house, Krishna chose to be with Vidura in his house. When he entered Vidura's house , Vidura was not there. Vidura's wife seeing the lord standing at their door step, lost herself. She didn't know what to do. She offered him a seat and treated him with bananas. In total ecstacy, she peeled the banana, gave the skin to Krishna and was throwing the fruit down. Anything offered by a devotee with love is always accepted by lord (9th chapter Gita, patram pushpam phalam thoyam) and our Krishna was happily eating the skin. When this was going on Vidura came in and saw the show. He looked at his wife and then only she realized what was happening. But Krishna didn't even consider this as a mistake but blessed them.) Vidura always stood on the side of dharma. When the brother Drithrashtra was ready for a war in an adharmic way, and when Duryodhana insulted Vidura in the court, he took a strong decision of resigning the post of the minister and walked away.

WHAT IS NEETHI?
Neethi are civil codes or teachings that are applicable to any place and to any period. The neethis are eternally valid, because they are in line with our scriptures, based on the three purusharthas of dharma, artha and kama (duty, wealth and virtue) There are many neethis given by the wise peoplelike manu neethi , vidura neethi.

WHY DO WE NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THIS? TO WHOM AND WHEN WAS THIS VIDURA NEETHI GIVEN?
Neethis are nothing but our dharma. If we know the rules, then all our doubts about our actions get cleared. Neethi is very much needed when we are confused as to what to do/how to act/where I have gone wrong/why it is a measuring stick to measure our purity in the actions as well as our motives behind the actions. It is not only for the king or the rulers. It is for every one of us who would like to follow the path of

dharma. THE CONVERSATION BETWEEN THE KING DHRITHRASHTRA AND HIS MINISTER VIDURA IS THE VIDURA NEETHI.The Vidura Neethi is from the "udyoga parva" of the Mahabharatha.This Vidura neethi was given by the minister Vidura to his brother Dhrithrashtra at the palace in Hastinapura. Vidura was far younger in years to Dhrithrashtra though riper in wisdom and it must have been easy for him to give the direct advise to the elder. (if our present day politicians and other rulers start following this rules, ours will be again rama rajyam). Sanjaya was sent as a messenger to the Pandavas to know the stand of Yudhishtra. Sanjaya took the reply and came to Dhrithrashtra. He spoke to the king "I was so happy to be in the atmosphere of peace and righteousness there. I do not like your behavior or your words. I had a most unpleasant job to do because of you. You are unrighteous. Your sons are sinners. You like to enjoy this earth in spite of all this. I gave your message to Yudhishtra and the reply will be given to you in the court tomorrow. As I am physically and mentally tired, please grant me leave to go". Sanjaya left the place. The mind of Dhrithrashtra was totally upset by the words of Sanjaya. He didn't know what was the reply of Yudhishtra. The whole body of the king Dhrithrashtra burned as if with fever. He tried to sleep but he could not. In despair he sent for his minister Vidura. Vidura was there within seconds to serve the king. The king told him the details of what Sanjaya spoke. The king was in a pitiable condition. He told vidura," You are my friend. You have loved me with all my faults. You must console me and put me to sleep. I cannot sleep". Vidura spoke in the consoling way and at the same time making the dharma very clear.

SLOKAS 1 3:

REASONS FOR NOT GETTING SLEEP:


Vidura says: five kinds of people are unable to sleep. 1. A man who lusts after the wife of another. 2. A thief (the thing does not belong to him so the thief is always under the insecurity that the things will be taken away) 3. A man who has lost all his wealth (attachment is still going on. Before he was identifying himself with his wealth and now he is identifying himself with the lost wealth. Shankaracharya's bhaja govindam says "maa kuru dhana jaya youvana gharvam harthi nimesha kaala: sarvam.all are impermanent. The time is ruthless and it takes away everything from you in no time) OR one who thinks all his wealth will be lost. (srila prabhupada says that the man is always lamenting about two things : 1) what he do not have 2) what was lost. All of us have an opinion that if we have more money we will be happy. But if we interview any rich man, we can clearly see the insecurity in him, even with his own son. All the time he sees the keys are safe. Documents are safe. Vigilant

about who is coming and who is going. Then when he can sleep? Ambani brothers are fighting nowfor what? Will they have a peaceful sleep?) 4. An unsuccessful man (all the time working with the winning strategies. Not alike in success and failureattached to the fruit of actions). 5. A weak man oppressed by a strong man. (fear of losing. Fear of body created by the mind. Buddhi doesn't work for this people). But Vidura said to Dhrithrashtra that none of these five kinds fits him. Then what is the reason for his sleeplessness? Vidura said: It is not today that you did not sleep. I think it is going on for so many years from the moment the pandavas came to Hastinapura after their father's death or even before Pandu had a son who was elder to Duryodhana. Since that day the jealousy has lodged in your heart. You are not righteous. You are a sinful person. You are responsible for the sufferings of the Pandavas. How can a sinful person like you get sleep? (if somebody is suffering because of our actions intentionally, can we sleep? If we have punished our child for our own selfishness, can we sleep? If we are using other person's pen without his knowledge can we be peaceful? I have excess luggage. I want to escape by paying a bribe to the airport guy. What is the mental state at that time? We have our own experiences as examples to these slokas.) Vidura further says to Dhrithrashtra, "Yudishtra always considers you as father and pays due respect to you. But because you have an eye for the kingdom and want your son to rule over the kingdom, you always behave like a thief to him. No surprise you are suffering from sleeplessness". (9th chapter asuric and raakshasik act. Eye on mohinieye on glamorous thingslost focusMOHAA CAPTURED DHRITHRASHTRA) Lastly vidura says GIVE THE KINGDOM TO YUDHISHTRA, YOU WILL SLEEP LIKE A CHILD. YOU ARE NOT WISE. YOU ARE FOOLISH.

The next slokas talk about who is wise and who is foolish. We will see it in the next week.

What do we learn from these slokas?


LEAD A RIGHTEOUS LIFE. BE IN THE PATH OF DHARMA. IF WE ARE IN DHARMA, WE ARE WITH THE LORD.

IF WE DO NOT HAVE JEALOUSY, COVETEOUSNESS, HATRED WHICH COMES TO ONE BECAUSE OF TOO MUCH OF ATTACHMENT, WE ARE ASSURED OF A GOOD SLEEP.

Part2

WHAT ARE THE QUALITIES OF A WISE MAN AND A FOOLISH MAN?Vidura told the king Dhrithrashtra Even if asked one should speak only truth, be it good or bad, hateful or pleasing. That is why I do not wish to tell you what is good for Kuru. I will say only what is both beneficial and consistent only with morality. My dear king you are foolish. You are not wise. When Dhrithrashtra heard these words from Vidura, he put a question to Vidura asking, WHAT ARE THE QUALITIES OF A WISE MAN AND A FOOLISH MAN? (slokas 4 to 13) We will see the qualities of a wise man in this week and in the forth coming week.

QUALITIES OF THE WISE MAN


1. A wise man is well-versed in Shastras. He does actions that are prescribed by the Shaastras and what are prohibited by Shaastras, he never takes up. ( Lord Krishna says in Bhagawat Gita let scriptures be your norm in determining what should be done and what not. Understand the injunction of the scriptures first and then set yourself to work). 2. Oblation in all holy places and kindness to all creatures are the same. Perhaps kindness to all surpasses the former. Never speak a lie for a land. This will destroy everything you have. (Dhrithrashtra could not extend the love to his own brother Pandus sons because of the desire that his son should rule the kingdom. Desire motivated action always takes one out of dharma. To fulfill our desires, how many times we have crossed our dharma?). A wise man always chooses to be in the path of dharma on any day, under any circumstances. (Harischandra and Gandhiji never told lies. Our Abdul Kalam, in difficult politics has tested himself a Dharmavaan). 3. Of all the strengths, the strength of the intellect is the best. That INTELLECT is the strength of the wise. Devatas do not protect men. They

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always wish to protect the intelligence of men. Vedas never rescue a person living sinfully. They forsake him when he is on the death bed. (Lord says in Bhagawat Gita that this is buddhi yoga- being single pointed. If it scatters like the mustard seeds in all directions (due to our desires), it is difficult to unite. The wise have the strength of this single pointed buddhi the self, much like the rays of the Sun when focused on a point on a piece of paper scorches it in no time). He is unattached to Vishaya Sukhaas. (Vishaya has come from the word Visha, which means poison. Any pleasure derived from sense objects is temporary. Todays joy is tomorrows pain. Having understood this, a wise man does not desire for anything. Like a tortoise withdrawing its limbs, the wise man knowing the danger, withdraws himself from their sway.) Desire does not tinge his actions. (The wise are selfless. The wise always work for the good of the world Loka Samgrahah. A man desires because he feels incomplete and by adding something or leaving something he thinks he will be happy. When the whole village is flooded with water (bliss of the self), the use of pond (worldly pleasures) is nothing. The wise is happy and complete with his own self. He has nothing to gain or lose by performing actions. His actions motivate the people who are following him. He makes everyone to participate in the action which takes one in the path of knowledge.) He is above all pairs of opposites, pleasure and pain, honor and dishonor, heat and cold, agreeable and disagreeable. A wise is neither elated nor dejected under these phases of life. (like a lake in the course of river Ganga, a wise is calm, cool and unagitated. Desires toss a man up and down in life. A wise man leaving all desires lives a happy life accepting everything in life as it is.) He insults nobody for any reason. (If we are reacting to a circumstance, it is only because of our ego and we want to show that we are not smaller in stature. The wise man is never a victim to ego or to body based ideas.) A wise man is sweet in his expressions. (Satyam vadah. Priyam vadah. Because he sees himself in everyone or he sees the lords presence in everyone, he is always sweet in his expressions as if he is talking to Krishna. Guruji often used to say how do you expect yourself to be treated by others, in the same way treat others. It is difficult to practice this sadhana on one whom we dislike. All mahatmas have prasanna vadanam and always smile at us. That is why we like to be in their presence. They are always givers of happiness.) A virtuous man should avoid speaking harsh words and angry words. Silence is said to be better than speech. If we must speak, speak the truth what is agreeable and in line with morality. (Gita says One who has won the lust and anger in this very life is a happy man. Lust, greed and anger are three gate ways to hell. Once there was an engineer who

used to always shout and scold his wife every day. In that town there came a sannyasi. Having heard the greatness of Sannyasi, the engineer went and asked him how to get rid of his anger. The sannyasi said, Whenever you scold your wife, go and hit a nail in the tree at your back yard. Come and meet me after a month. The engineer was happy and he started hitting nails every day, whenever he scolded his wife. As days passed on, the engineer saw that the count of the nails per day was coming down and some days there was no necessity to hit the nail. One month passed. Now he went back to sannyasi and asked him what to do now. The sannyasi said My dear child, now go and pluck out the nails. The engineer went and did the task. The sannyasi who was with him, told him, You have now changed and hence, you removed all the nails. But what are you going to do with the holes in the tree?. The engineer understood the point. Words are very powerful than the weapons. Once it enters deep into the heart of man, it is difficult to take it out, unlike arrows from a bow which can be removed. Having known this, and we ourselves have experienced this, we should not shoot this arrow of harsh words on others). 10. Unless and otherwise asked by people, a wise does not say anything to them. (Dont throw advice. The wise have the knowledge that people come to him only when they are in the listening end. It is only the river which gets benefitted by joining the ocean and not the other way. We always have the habit of advising others before they ask for it. It is waste of energy and waste of time to tell good things to people when their ears are deaf to it.)

Conclusion:
All these slokas remind us of a Sthithapragnya, a Yogi, a gunaatheetha, a Jnani as explained in Bhagawad Gita. An introspection is required to see where we are which in itself a Saadhana. All spiritual Saadhanas are not used to weigh others but to weigh ourselves. Let us continue the meditation when we meet next week on the same topic, Qualities of a Wise Man in the same platform. Part3

WHAT ARE THE QUALITIES OF A WISE MAN?Let mother mahaa maaya remove our ignorance and lead us in the path of light. With prostrations to our guruji and all the sathsangees, we will continue with the topic:

WHAT ARE THE QUALITIES OF A WISE MAN AND A FOOLISH MAN? (slokas 4 to 13) 11. A wise man does not regret for what is lost. (A lump of earth, a stone or gold is but the same in the eyes of the wise. They are able to discriminate between sat and asat, i.e., what is permanent and what is impermanent. They are unattached to anything in this world and the world itself. Suppose I am wearing a watch and I give it to you as a gift. After giving it to you, within ten minutes you happen to lose it. What will be my feeling about the loss? It does not affect me. As long as it remains as my watch, there is pain. A wise is above the feeling of I and mine. He does not own anything in this world). 12. A wise man does not need more time than required. He controls time and cost. (Lord says yoga is skill in action, Samatvam yoga uchyate. Having the equanimity of mind, the wise man works with focus leaving the results in the hands of the Lord. Because there is no anxiety, the wise man completes the work at the given time. Guruji always gives talks in the time allotted to him and he never compromises on the strength of the message. What he accomplishes in 24 hours time, is unimaginable to us because we are scattered into many things and there is always anxiety to the results. No equanimity of mindso there is no focus for us. Even though 72 in age, Gurujis work is done like that of a young man, with lots of enthusiasm and energy. Lord says in Gita that if a person works selfless, He is their strength and buddhi. The wise are simple in their life. They never waste food or money in any way. Guruji wanted to paint an old school in Manipal. He took quotations from so many people and only then did he decide on the action. For them everything is lordBe it time or money. They dont kill time like us. Every second is used to the best of his abilities. We all plan and finally do not act on it saying I didnt find time whereas the wise man only acts). 13. A wise man knows systems, procedures and means to carry out his will. (How true! Gurujis distribution of Gita, workshops for school children and 100,000 sathsangs worldwide the will of him is the will of the Lord, as many people are benefitted out of it. Beautifully designed actions!!!!!!!! Similarly, Ammas action of building houses to tsunami victims and helping the flood victims of Bihar, Srila Prabhupadas Hare Krishna movement.we will not know what is there in their mind till the actions are completed and it is done without strain and with no big banners . Many of us are enjoying their efforts! ) 14. A wise man can foresee things. (purity of heart and the steady intellect, always in touch with the inner divinity. The water which is clear, with no disturbances shows what is there in the bottom. Similarly, the wise are silent, undisturbed which make them see everything clearly.)

15. A wise man is a good conversationalist. To control speech is said to be the most difficult. It is not easy to hold a long conversation, speak words filled with meaning and at the same time delightful to the hearers. (We too hold long conversations at home or at a social place. Are they meaningful? Can they hear to us for more time? People are sometimes afraid of us because they are not sure when we will stop talking. But to the wise mans speech we are like bees stuck to honey. Why? Their intentions are pure and they speak from divine inspiration. They touch our heart. Guruji used to say that any message can be effectively conveyed in just two minutes. Whether there are elders around them or children around them or people from other countries around them, they are always comfortable with the crowd. Their message is only love and nobody resists love.) 16. A wise man is one who is contented. (Situations in life come and go like passing clouds. The wise man does not give importance to all that. He focuses on what is everlasting. He is happy with whatever he has. He does not put any effort to add further or to leave anything. The ocean does not add up to its level when a river merges or lowers its level when we take a bucket of water from it. That is the contentment of the yogi or wise. He is always full of knowledge. Our contentment is till the next desire sprouts in us). 17. A king who does not know about his territory, gain, loss, treasury, population, punishment cannot retain his kingdom for long. He is wise who takes up action or resists it considering his own ability, the nature of act and the consequences of act. (We take up actions because of our Ahamkara. We have enthusiasm in the beginning and slowly it starts fading and find some reason or the other to leave it half way or we grieve not having thought about the consequences. Reiki says there are times in life where we have to say no to things. If we know that, then we are wise). 18. Poison kills but one man; so does a weapon. But wicked company can destroy an entire kingdom with kings and subjects. A wise company is always needed in a kingdom. The king becomes wise by doing two things, 1. Refraining from harsh speech and 2. Disregarding those who are wicked. (Even though Sanjaya advised Dhrithrashtra many times, he disregarded the advice of wise ministers and listened to Duryodhana, Sakuni, who are wicked.) 19. The king who wishes to control his counselors before controlling his own self, or the king who wishes to subdue his adversaries before controlling his counselors, fights a losing battle, losing his strength. A wise king is one who has full control over his senses. (The senses are the five horses. If we aim for a pleasant and safe journey in life, the five horses need to be controlled. Otherwise it will drag us to the slushy roads of samsara. Our

own actions are the examples to our children and people around us (yad yad aacharthi shreshta3rd chapter of Gita). When we are unable to control ourselves how can we have a say on others control? Our guruji is always the first person to come to the sathsang on time. Seeing him come first, all of us used to rush to the venue. A well disciplined life bodily and mentally is the life of the wise, motivating us to emulate him in every way. An angry man cannot advise anyone to leave anger. A drunkard cannot ask another to give up drinking. Mahatma Gandhi wanted to advise someone to leave sweets. Even before advising, he practiced to live without sweets. Our practice will do more help to the world than we entering into the world in the name of service). 20. A wise man respects elders and always put into practice what they advise. He is all the time learning good behavior, good words and good acts from every side. (If we read Mahabharatham, we see that the Lord of the universe, Krishna prostrating to elders. Krishnas life is itself a message for us in every aspect of life. The Pandavas always followed the advice of their guru. Yudhistra remained always calm and at the same time very thoughtful even in difficult circumstances. The respect for the elders and the practice of the wise peoples advice has won their kingdom. The wise are open to all goodness). Wise have high presence of mind. (High presence of mind is the gift of living in the present. They can quote relevant incidents, stories, scriptures which suits the topic of discussion. Any serious and difficult topics will be put in a simple and humorous way by the wise). CONCLUSION: KAMALA SUBRAMANIAM BEAUTIFULLY PUTS IT THAT A WISE KING OR A WISE MAN SHOULD DISCRIMINATE BETWEEN THE 2 WITH THE HELP OF 1. HE MUST CONTROL 3 BY MEANS OF 4. HE HAS TO CONQUER 5, KNOW THE 6, ABSTAIN FROM 7 AND BE HAPPY. ONE intellect TWO right and wrong THREE friend, stranger and enemy FOUR gift, conciliation, disunion and severity FIVE the senses SIX treaty, war, etc

SEVEN women, dice, hunting, harshness of speech, drinking, severity of punishment and waste of wealth All keys to become a wise man are given. It is up to us to retain what is good within us and replace all negative qualities with these positive qualities. We cannot wait for the right time to practice. We can do it right now. The Grihasthashrama is the best platform to develop many of the qualities given here. The happiness is here and now for us if we live wisely. We will continue in the next week on Viduras explanations on who is foolish. Part 4

WHAT ARE THE QUALITIES OF A FOOL? (Shlokas 14-20)1. A fool is one who thinks that he knows everything, without reading scriptures under proper guidance. Scriptures are closed book as far as he is concerned. (Lord Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita that the scripture is the measuring scale for ones thoughts and actions. It teaches us what we should do and what we should not do. There are many stories in the epics about great people who thought that they knew everything but fell prey to situations. What to talk about a person who has not read the scriptures at all! Surrender is next to impossible for such people. Whatever they do is always right as far they are concerned. Being highly egoistic they cannot accept anything which proves them wrong. They think the body as real and do not believe in God as also the scriptures which talks about God. In Tamil there is a proverb which says that whatever we know is only a drop in the ocean. It is foolish to think that we know everything. Submissiveness comes to us when we read the stories of the Lord and great saints around us). 2. A foolish man dreams to achieve bigger things without the basic necessities for the work. He has a knack of desiring what he has no right to desire. (Bhagavad Gita says that one should understand the scriptural injunctions and then set to work. The basic necessity for any work is the knowledge of the work and the guidance of a wise person. A foolish person who does not know what is right ends up in doing works only to satisfy his senses. His works are unbeneficial and harmful which leads to the destruction in the world). 3. A foolish man earns money in an adharmic way. When he desires to have something he will never hesitate to employ unfair means. (We have seen in bus stops and railway stations, even near signals, the mother using a child as tool to earn money by begging. How many Harshad Mehtas are there around in this world wanting to become rich overnight, at any cost! Like our Duryodhana who attempted many times to kill his own brothers for the want of kingdom, for them the end justifies the means).

4. A foolish man is one who is interested in para-dharma without doing his swadharma. (Every person has got his unique quality which determines his Dharma or duty (Swadharma) in this body. A house holder on any day cannot take the role of a Sanyasi (Paradharma) ignoring the prime duties of looking after the family, parents. Lord Krishna explains in Karma Yoga that ones own duty, even though not glamorous is better than the duty alien to ones growth, however well performed. When we start copying actions which are not meant for us, there is always a fear of downfall. Once there was an interview published in a Tamil Weekly about the temple road side Sanyasis. When they were asked why they became Sanyasis their replies were identical. They had chosen to be Sanyasis not as a renunciate as prescribed in the scripture but for want of food, shelter and money. A housewife, who feels that the career woman is better off, tries to emulate her and gets in to trouble. The real service starts at home with an attitude of no expectations. By ignoring our duty which is given to us by the Lord and trying to help others or not doing anything to the dependents is foolish. When we go out of our way of our nature we become fools). 5. Those that are powerful make a foolish man envious. (Whoever is envious of anothers wealth, beauty, might, high lineage, happiness, good fortune, honours suffers from incurable disease. The Lord says in Gita that the negative qualities like lust and anger are mans eternal enemies. A person who is envious is always unhappy. He is unable to identify himself with other persons happiness as he would with his own kith and kin. We have seen in Devi Mahatmyam and in other epics that the Asuras are always foolish to fight with the all-powerful Lord. Envy begets war, be it the war for a piece of land or the war within oneself. Lord Krishna says beautifully that who ever wins the lust, greed and anger in this very body, becomes a happy man). 6. A foolish man is proud and has a bulged ego. (Lords way of destruction is only by blowing the ego of a person. We can blow a balloon only to some extent. Further we try to blow, it bursts. The thought that he knows everything is a sign of the bulged ego. In the 8th chapter of Gita, Lord explains the life time of Brahma to make us understand that our life time is nothing when compared to the life time of Brahma. When Indra was overcome with pride, Krishna, to save the devotees, lifted the Govardhana Hill with his little finger. Wherever there is pride and Ahamkara, the lord shows somebody who is better than that person. The ego has never won a war. A fool without knowing the truth, gives his mind, senses, intellect as the seat to the thief called Ego. And finally it loots his life itself. Slokas 7 to 20 of 16th chapter of Gita deals in great detail about the arrogance of such a man). 7. One man commits sin and several others reap the fruit of action resulting from his sin. But sin attaches only to the man who has committed the act. Other

people escape. (There was a thief called Ratnakara who lived in the forest with his family. He used to attack people who cross that forest and loot the peoples valuables. One day Sage Narada came by that way. Ratnakara went to Naradaji and threatened him to give his valuables. Naradaji asked him why he is stealing money. Ratnakara told the sage that his family is living with this income only. Naradaji asked Ratnakara to go and ask his family members whether any body will take a little part of his sin and he promised the thief that he will stay there till he comes. Ratnakara went and asked his mother, his wife, brothers, children to take a little part of his sin. Everybody refused to take. Ratnakara was feeling sad and came back to the sage. Naradaji told him this is the truth of life. You are thinking that you are working for the family. But they enjoy only the fruit of your work but not the action. He initiated Ratnakara to Rama japa and the poor thief did not know how to utter Rama nama but went on saying Mara Mara. That thief is none other than our great Sage Valmiki who got realised because of Naradaji. We too follow adharmic ways to fulfil our desires born of attachment. If we keep this truth in mind, we can avoid foolish actions and become wise.) 8. The foolish man likes one who dislikes him and hates one who likes him. (A foolish person never uses his buddhi to discriminate between good and bad. Who ever leads him to his good, becomes his enemy and whoever supports him in his actions becomes his friend. There is total confusion in his life. He always chooses the path of Preyas, the life of momentary happiness to the path of shreyas, the life which leads him to his highest good). 9. A foolish man fights against one who has more strength. (Wherever we come across the word fool the first thought comes to our mind are the asuras. The asuras as we have seen in the stories are all the time challenging the Lord Almighty. The best strategy to win a fight is to know our strength and also the strength of the enemies. If we know the enemies are powerful than us better not to confront. Foolish people fight with ones who have more strength because they are in delusion and hence prompted by their ego to fight. Saddam Hussein fought with US despite knowing he cannot win) 10. A foolish man has no importance of time. (A foolish man is in the clutch of Tamas (negligence, delusi on and ignorance). He wants to do everything without moving an inch from his place. He will think to do todays work tomorrow and tomorrows work the day after. Ultimately nothing will be done. He is in the thought that the whole time is for him and he doesnt look into the emergency of the work. All works are same for him. His waking up, sleeping times are totally undisciplined. Any work given to him is most of the times incomplete and if complete, not the best of work).

11. A foolish man always moves with others with a doubting mind. He is not truthful even to a friend. (Doubts arise in our mind when we lack faith. Being selfish in attitude, he always moves with the sense of insecurity). 12. He does not worship Devas or Pitrus. (A foolish man has no faith in scriptures, God or anything prescribed as good. Basically he is a Naastika (disbeliever in God). Lord says in Bhagavad Gita that the fool who lives a life prompted by his desires attains neither spiritual perfection nor worldly happiness nor liberation. A foolish man thinks he is the centre of world and never gives any value to morality) 13. A foolish man visit houses uninvited. (He is indifferent to others convenience. He puts the host in a delicate position. This is because he feels he is always invited and important. Moreover he visits for his own selfish interest). 14. A foolish man starts talking without even asking for it. (A wise man wants to speak because he has something to say; a foolish man wants to speak because he wants to say something. When the fear of defeat came to the mind of Duryodhana, he talked disrespectfully to the guru and the elders in the battle field. Actually there was no need to speak and more so when there are elders around him. A foolish man neglects the surrounding and makes himself a laughing stock all the time). 15. A foolish man always points out mistake on others, keeping the same mistake within himself. (Pointing mistake on others is a highly egoistic action. In Gurujis workshop we were asked to comment on three mathematical sums that were written on the board, for example, 2 x 3 = 6, 2 + 3 =5 and 6 3 = 2. If we were to comment on the wrong sum rather than the two right ones, we fall in to this category of those who look at mistakes in life. Before we point out others mistakes we need to see with a big lens what is inside us. The index finger is always an index for our attitude and should always be pointed inwards). CONCLUSION: As explained in these slokas, it is very clear that on any day, under any circumstances we cannot encourage our ego based emotions like anger, pride, and greed. If we have that even for a moment, we are considered foolish and we pave way for our own destruction. The lust, greed and anger are three gates to hell. One who wins these three is wise and ever happy man on this earth and he becomes everlasting. Dhrithrashtra wanted to know about the everlasting thing Vidura was talking about. Next week we will see in detail what is everlasting in this life.

Part5

The soul is eternal and everlasting.Vidura said to Dhrithrashtra, Virtue is everlasting; pleasure and pains are transitory. Life is, indeed, everlasting, but its particular phases are transitory. Forsaking those which are passing, betake thyself to that which is everlasting and let contentment be thine, since contentment is the greatest of all acquisitions. WHAT IS EVERLASTING HERE IN THIS LIFE? The human body is a house with nine doors, three pillars and five witnesses. It is presided over by the soul which is eternal and everlasting.

TRUTH ABOUT LIFE Great kings, great people who have lived in glory, wealth and joy, have all become victims to the Universal Destroyer called Death. This world is ever threatened by death. The span of ones life is, helplessly as it were, reduced every night when he goes to sleep. Death waits for no man. It is nearing every one every moment. Its progress cannot be judged by us but it is ever steady. With the passing of each day, mans life is shortened. When we are busy fulfilling our desires, much like plucking flowers in the garden, death snatches us away. Bheeshma says Yudishtra,What you have planned to do tomorrow must be done today. What you have planned to do in the afternoon must be done in the forenoon. Death is ruthless. It will never wait and see if all your acts have been carried out. Man should therefore hurry and practice virtue in the prime time of life. Life is so uncertain and death is certain. HOW TO CUT THE WEB OF ATTACHMENT? Man is plagued with a thousand desires in the world. He is attached to many things and many people. He is attached to his works, to his children, his home. All these have woven the web of attachment from which he is torn away by death. We need to understand that nothing can resist the force of this web of attachment except truth. Knowledge about the true value of things of the world man becomes wise. This world is dhukaalayam and asaashvatham as said by the Lord Krishna in the 8th chapter of Gita. Anything we derive from this world is impermanent. One who understands this fact faces death without fear. TRUTH IS IMMORTALITY. Immortality as well as the germs of death can be found in this same body. It is all in our hands whether we want to nurture the one or the other. The web of attachment is so easily formed. It is easy for anyone to nurture the

plant of attachment. (Mruthyunjaya mantram compares the attachment to a cucumber oorvaaruham iva bandanaath. Cucumber is the only fruit that never falls even when ripe. It is difficult to pluck. Even though the climber is thin and unable to bear the weight of the fruit, it doesnt fall. The attachment to the stem is so strong similar to our attachment to the world. Bhagawad Gita says Asangasastrena drdhena chittvaa use the weapon of non-attachment to root out this ever growing tree of samsara). WHO IS THE FRIEND WHO FOLLOWS A MAN AFTER HIS DEATH? All great people went away from this world leaving behind their kingdom, wealth and glory. Man has not a single companion in this march through this incident called life. The dead body is cast in to the funeral pyre like a piece of wood. The wealth is enjoyed by many whereas the dead body is enjoyed by the birds and animals. After death we are followed by our own actions (sins and merits). The righteousness, the Dharma is the only friend of man. Therefore, should men carefully and gradually earn the merit of righteousness. (Yudishtra was the only one among the Pandavas who could reach the heaven with his mortal body because of his righteousness. We remember great kings like Ashoka, Mahatma Gandhi, all great saints only because of their actions not with the way they look physically) WHAT ARE THE TWO ETERNAL RIVERS? The life is spoken of as an eternal river. Five senses = waters Desire and anger = crocodiles and sharks Self control = boat (BG Dhyaana sloka says, Bheeshma Drona Tada. The ocean of Samsara was successfully crossed by the Pandavas because they had Krishna as their boatman.) The soul is spoken of as yet another eternal river. Righteous merit = sacred bath Truth = waters Self control = banks

Kindness = waves When we are in ignorance, we are in the river of life. When we become wise we are in the river of the soul. The boatman (Krishna) plays an important role in the river of life. The boatman is none other than the soul which is sacred and everlasting. The river of life ends in a man who takes refuge in the Lord and merges with the river of soul. Like all of us, Dhrithrashtra wanted to know more about the soul and also the way to meet the ancient and the eternal one when in this body. Vidura then invoked Rishi Sanatsujata to clear the doubts of the King. Being invoked by the pure heart of Vidura who is wise among men, the Rishi arrived there. The king prostrated the Rishi and asked his doubts to him. WHAT IS DEATH? WHAT IS IMMORTALITY? Ignorance = death Absence of ignorance = immortality Animals like tiger, lion are not afraid of death because they cannot perceive clearly with the mind or the senses. It is only men who imagine the Lord Yama who holds his sway in the region of Pitris. It is at the command of Yama that death in the form of wrath, ignorance, covetousness arises among men. Pulled by the attachments and pride, men walk in the ways that are unrighteousness. Senses dominate their life and repeatedly they fall into difficulties (hell). Thus, that ignorance receives the name Death. Those who desire the fruit of actions and perform yagnas as prescribed in the Vedas, are again born into this world after exhausting all their merits. The one who desires earthly enjoyments cannot avoid the round of rebirths, up and down and around. Attachment is the most terrible of all sorrows (death). The death Yama cannot even come near a man who kills desire by self restraint. The wise are never misled in their lives as they walk in the light of soul. Whoever wins over the death called ignorance in this very body by controlling the senses with the weapon of dispassion and discrimination attains immortality. HOW TO WIN OVER DEATH? Destroy the desire which arises because of the ignorance (I am the body).

NO WISH, NOT EVEN THE SLIGHTEST ONE IS EITHER TO BE ENTERTAINED OR PURSUED. (Attachment leads to desire; unfulfilled desire leads to anger; anger to delusion; delusion to loss of memory and the whole process ruins ones life itself) CONCLUSION: The banana peel has little sweetness of the fruit being associated with it. We being wise, we know that the fruit is different from the peel. So we throw the peel into the dust bin and have only the fruit. Vidura is teaching us that the peel is the body, senses and the mind. The fruit is the soul. The problems what we face in our day to day life belongs to the peel, the body. The fruit is ever sweet and not touched by anything. The time we shift our focus on the fruit, negating the peel, we attain immortality or in other words we win the death. Whatever happiness we derive from the sense objects are temporary. Initially it will show us happiness but always ends in sorrow. This path even though is difficult initially, will give us happiness which is permanent. Guruji is always wanted and loved by everyone because he is a giver of happiness. We can give to people what we have. When we are beggars of happiness, how can we serve the world? Serve the people at home? It is out of great compassion the great saints are living among us. They inspire us to reach that state of bliss they are reveling in. We are children of amritha; children of immortality. The fruit within all of us are one and the same. Let us live t his truth. Part6

We will be free from all miseries and bondage, if we understand who am I?If one relies on the desires, he dies every moment of his life. If one relies on the knowledge, he lives happily every moment of his life without any fear of death. The death itself is destroyed when it comes under the influence of knowledge. Vidura has spoken of the quality of self-restraint as very important to escape the fear of death. The king Dhritrashtra wanted to know about the self-restraint and also about how to reach the ultimate through the self-control. There is very little oil in the vessel of life these words from a dancer awakened Swami Rama to continue his Sadhana vigorously. No matter how bad or how small we think we have been, we have a chance to transform our whole

personality. We will be free from all miseries and bondage, if we understand who am I?

WHAT IS THE OBJECT OF RENUNCIATION? WHAT IS THE OBJECT OF MAUNA? The object of asceticism or Mauna is to attain to that state which is beyond the reach of language or the mind. That state is the state of peace and bliss. (Many of our scriptures have explained in great details, that the truth can be only experienced and cannot be explained. To know world we need the senses. But to know God, we need to shut off the senses. Language and words are mere pointers to that supreme state of happiness. And walking in that direction, we experience the Lord in silence with our intuitive knowledge (Anirvachaneeyam). Any effort taken externally to know the truth is ignorance. The inward journey is very important and that is the silence or Mauna Vidura is talking about. One becomes a Muni not by dwelling in the forest but by keeping silence in all situations of life. Any amount of reading books or listening to discourses will not bring us the knowledge as all are external efforts. Our Guruji has never said do this or dont do this. He showed us the path silently with his living. A life of non-attachment is his way of life. He taught us the lesson learn to walk all alone- with no expectations and no complaints. Bhagawad Gita says that without undergoing the discipline of detached action, it is vain to abandon all external actions. This will be an act of hypocrisy and idleness. Detached action will gradually elevate a man to the true state of renunciation who feels I do nothing in all the movement s of the body, even in the very winking of the eyes. Having renounced thus mentally, he lives in the body undisturbed by anything. Lord Krishna says, controlling the senses by the mind, controlling the mind by the intellect and the intellect focused on the supreme Brahman, (like a compass in ship always shows the north) a seeker attains to eternal peace. WHAT ARE THE SIX KINDS OF RENUNCIATION (VAIRAGYAM)? 1. Never experiencing joy on occasion of prosperity (any prosperity be it a child, wealth, health, spirituality one should always keep up the evenness of mind. Joy comes as a result of our ego taking the credit of the situation (I got it or I won it or I am rich or I am in Satsangh, my son is in IIT, My husband is a senior manager, I have come from a great family, I am a Brahmin). Recognition of joy itself is the action of ego. Giving up the

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association of sorrow is not talked about here, because we always give that credit to others. We dont want to associate ourselves with sorrow. If we can disassociate ourselves and remain undisturbed in the experience of joy, we have renounced the I, the ego). Abandoning of sacrifices, prayers and pious acts with a desire for merits arising from them. (Why do we give up things in life for merits in the name of Punya or for name and fame or for knowledge? As said in the 9th chapter of Gita, anything we give up for selfish desires cannot be a Raja Vidya. True abandonment should always culminate in knowledge. Lord Krishna says that charity, austerity, sacrifice should not be abandoned. It need to be performed without expecting the fruit of actions and without attachment (I am giving, I am doing)). Abandoning desire, or withdrawing from the world (Vidura is saying that any desire prompted action need to be avoided. We perform actions to get something from the world or to leave something to the world. Both are desire prompted actions only. A mans needs and wants are never ending. One who understands that desires are the ways to sorrow abandons this very thief of happiness. Leaving the selfish desires is the renunciation mentioned here. Whatever we get from world is impermanent and it ends in sorrow. Knowing this, a man should not desire anything from world or should withdraw from world. All great saints work for the good of the world- Lokasangraha). One should not grieve or allow ones self to be afflicted by grief when ones actions fail or when anything disagreeable happens, one should feel no pain. (Happiness is our true nature. One who grieves is moving away from ones true nature. It is our expectation which decides an action as a success or a failure. If our ego takes all the responsibility of an action, without surrendering ourselves to God, then one grieves when the desired result is not achieved. Any situation in life, any happening in life if we can take as the Prasad of the Lord, where there is room for grief? Surrendering our ego to the guru or to our Lord is the only way out to pain. The Lord says in Gita that severance of connection with pain is Yoga). Not soliciting even ones sons, wives and others that may all be very dear. (Vairagya makes everything perfect. Great saints have lived with great vairagya without leaving their duties and the aashrama. All they have is for the benefit of everyone around them. The house becomes the aashram and whoever comes home are offered food and shelter. If a Tsunami comes and takes away everything including the wife and children, a man of renunciation will not sit mad. He floats on water but never let the water to enter into the boat. He never seeks anything in life. Seeking is only when one has a desire. Having risen above desires he lives as an example of the ideal. After the process of churning for a long time, a person with vairaghya floats like butter above water).

6. Giving away to a deserving person. (Anything we give, we need to give to a deserving person. Charity has no value if we give because of our attachment without examining whether one really needs it or not. Infosys Sudha Murthy had helped a paper boy to study further but asked for the progress report every month. Vidura says us to give away for a higher cause. If we give food, that times hunger is taken care of. If we give medicine, that days sickness is taken care of. But if we give knowledge, that takes care of him forever. Krishna also says in Gita that this knowledge is a supreme secret and to be given only to a man who has shraddha and bhakthi. Plenty of temples all around but again and again pouring money for temple constructions is ignorance. We can distribute good books to small schools in villages. I read an article in a magazine which says people keep helping organizations even after they prosper because they are giving money for so many years and they dont want to stop. We need clear buddhi and discrimination and the guidance of the Guru to understand what is prescribed in our scriputres. We have seen the Pandavas after the death of Krishna, didnt want to live. They crowned the Prince Parikshit as king. They could leave the kingdom with all riches and glory in no time. Great detachment!). WHAT ARE THE TWO TYPES OF MAUNA? 1. Restraints of speech (A tapas to control the sense organs a physical silence) 2. Restraint of meditation (At the seat of meditation, not only the sense organs are restrained; even the thoughts are quietened mental silence). WHICH TYPE OF MAUNA IS SUPERIOR? The true mauna consists, not in merely restraining the speech, but total restraint of all the senses and the mind. (The railway train was running at full speed from Calcutta to Delhi. In one compartment, two British passengers were talking in English. Pointing at one monk (Sadhu), travelling in the same compartment, one British passenger was telling the other, Look, what a deception! With such youthful age, healthy body and full capacity to work, this man became monk to get free food and to loiter anywhere. There are thousands of such monks in this country and people feed them in blind faith. Criticism of this sort went on for a long time, but the monk (Sanyasi) sitting on the opposite seat was pondering deeply with a calm posture.

When the train arrived at one station and halted, the station master saw the monk (Sanyasi), bowed down before him and asked in English, What can I do in your service, Sir? The Sanyasi answered in English, One glass of water will be enough. I want nothing else. The two British passengers observed that the Sanyasi spoke in such pure English. They felt surprised. They never knew that the Sanyasi was educated. They had abused the Sanyasi so much and still there was not a word by way of reaction. His posture was the same, full of happiness as before.

The passengers inquired of him, Well sir, why did you not react to our criticism? He replied, Brothers, I remain engrossed only in the thought of my lifes work. I do not enter into any kind of disputes. The peaceful posture and Sadhana of the vow of silence brought about a lot of regard on part of those two British passengers. This Sanyasi was Swami Vivekananda, the chief disciple of the great monk Shri Ramkrishna Paramhamsa. Restraining from speech has been practiced by many great mahatmas like Gandhiji, Arbindo, Mahavira for many years. Ramana Maharishis messages were mostly given in silence only. Our Guruji often says that any sentence is

understood by people only in the one second silence after that sentence. If we restrain from speech but mind and senses fully active, we are hypocrites. Like the above story, the restraint of speech should merge in the silence of the mind itself. In that silence alone, the truth can be revealed. CAN A PERSON OF LEARNING ATTAIN TO A STATE OF QUIETITUDE AND ACHIEVE EMANCIPATION , BY MAUNA? The person, who is practicing the mauna, will lose consciousness of both the objective and the subjective. The concentration of all consciousness is on Brahman alone. Mauna is obtained by the gradual merging of the gross in the subtle (speech into silence), the subtle in the causal (silence in to thoughtless state) and the causal into Brahman (thoughtless state merging in to consciousness). Bhagawad Gita equates a Munis mind that is well under control and united with the Atman to a lamp at a breezeless spot). HOW IS IT TO BE PRACTICED HERE? Though residing in the mind and though inherent in the mind, the knowledge of Brahman is still unmanifest. It is by the aid of pure intellect and Brahmacharya that it is made manifest. Like a blade projecting from a clod of earth, a person should disassociate the soul from the body. Men obtain by work only worlds that are perishable. However, he that is blessed with knowledge attains the state of Brahman which is everlasting. (One need to have the desire to attain Brahman state (Mumukshatva). Every cell of the body should burn for that state. Ramakrishna says beautifully that how one longs for the breath when he is pushed under the water and that should be our thirst for the truth. Once the Guru showed Swami Rama plenty of jewels and asked him to take it. Swami Rama cried to his Guru Are you telling me to accept these jewels instead of you? I dont want them. I want to be with you. Guru said If you want to be with me, look over there. Do you see that lofty flame? (Huge walls of fire). If you can go through that fire you follow me. How much desire do you have for the world, and how much for the light? Swami Rama told I prefer fire to temptations and thus chose the path of renunciation. Renunciation is the path of the fire and should be followed only by those who have burned their worldly desires. Disappointments, greed, lust, hatred, and love,

anger and jealousy cannot be renounced without spiritual discipline. A frustrated and dissatisfied soul is not fit to tread the path of renunciation. When all disturbances die with the practice of Viveka and Vairagya, in that silence one abides in his own self of peace and tranquility. We can have it here and now if we have the thirst for it. CONCLUSION: When we travel by train or by flight or when we are left at home for few hours all alone, how many of us enjoy the silence? Most of us plan to read a book, work Sudoku, watch some movies or keep talking to someone. Silence is the state not preferred by anyone. A true spiritual seeker and one who has the thirst for realization, there is only way the way of silence. Initially we take efforts to be silent and later effortlessly we can abide in the silence called Samadhi. Nothing is retained by man in that state of silence. Chinmayananda says that every step on the beach sand is beautiful. But if we look back and start comparing the one step with the other, the disturbance begins. We dont know how many births we have lived such life. But in this life, in this very body, we will attain that state of peace and everlasting happiness by living like a Muni. SILENCE IS THE BEST AND THE MOST UNIQUE ART OF CONVERSATION. SILENCE IS THE BEST SPEECH. IF YOU MUST SPEAK, SPEAK THE MINIMUM. DO NOT SPEAK TWO WORDS, IF ONE IS ENOUGH. THE EGO GETS WIPED OUT IN THE STATE OF SILENCE. ONCE THIS HAPPENS, WHO WILL SPEAK AND WHO WILL PONDER? (ALL DUALITIES HAVE DISAPPEARED) SILENCE IS AN EXCELLENT MEANS OF SELF-BETTERMENT, BUT ONLY RARELY DOES ONE OF US MAKE GOOD USE OF IT. We will continue on the topic of Brahman in the next week. Part7

(Guruji often used to say that mere reading of cookery book is of no use. That will never quench our hunger or thirst. We need to practically cook and thus become knowledgeable).We should never be satisfied by simply attending and hearing the discourses. Intellectual knowledge of the Atman is only the first stage. There are many more ladders we need to climb on after the acquisition of this intellectual knowledge. Up to this level the knowledge is only indirect knowledge.

Let us all strive to become and be. (Guruji often used to say that mere reading of cookery book is of no use. That will never quench our hunger or thirst. We need to practically cook and thus become knowledgeable).

HOW MAUNA IS TO BE PRACTISED HERE? HOW TO ACHIEVE THE EMANCIPATION BY MAUNA? After the senses have been restrained and after the will has been merged in the pure intellect, that state succeeds is one of the utter absence of worldly thought (SILENCE) and he abides in it and he is. The ingredients are already given by Sage Sanatsujatha and Vidura. We need pure mind. Mana eva manushyaanaam kaaranam bandha mokshayah the mind is the cause of bondage and the same mind is the cause of liberation. If the mind turns outward to the world of objects, it develops attachment and falls into the pit of desires and finally leads one to sorrowful life of samsara. As said in the earlier chapters, it leads one to the fear of death. The mind when turned inward (U-turn), with all the senses controlled, really enjoys the bliss within and escapes the fear of death. PRATYAAHARA is a stage within the seekers, wherein they withdraw the whole mind from its wanderings and to apply the entire energy at a single thought which the seeker chooses. Having reached this stage of mental with drawl, the seeker walks in the path of DHAARANA (concentration), DHYAANA (meditation) and SAMAADHI (the final realization). We all know that a mere physical body will not move, grow or act unless the LifePrinciple presides over it. A dead body can no more smile, eat or walk, think or feel. When once this energy flows out, the body falls down and in a short time, starts decomposing into very elements (earth, fire, water, sky, ether) from which it had come. The man would have lived as a great giant, a great king but the end is same for everyone be it a king or a beggar. All of us are reading this scripture, grasping the words, analyzing them intellectually and understanding the essence only because of the presence of the Lord or the Brahman within us. Using a telescope we can see far off objects, but we cannot see our own eye using the same telescope. The supreme truth is the eye of the eye, ear of the ear. The power house behind all the activities within us and also the whole universe is this Brahman. The gold may take different shapes and sizes like bangles, chain, ring, watches but the substratum is Gold alone. The clay takes different shapes of pot, lamp

etc. but all cannot exist without clay. All of us are made up of different body levels, mental levels and intellectual levels, but the basic principle behind our life is the same, the Brahman. Those who see externally will find differences. But those who see internally know that we are one and the same, the Supreme Consciousness. The silence takes one inward. Words and languages take one outside or away from the heart. All our scriptures are prompting us to leave our desires which can never bring us peace and happiness and at the same time to go inward where we have everything what we seek for in the outer world. By reading this we know we are the Spirit. But the next moment we come back to body level and speak and live as if this body is real. We say I have grown dark, I am fat, this dress looks nice only on me all are body based thoughts. When we are with our mind we say I am doubtful, I am agitated, I am worried. When we are with buddhi we think I have a solution for this problem, I am dull and so on. The only way to practice the truth is in silence by discriminating between real and unreal. Vivekachoodamani (Crest Jewel of Discrimination) written by the great saint Shankaracharya says that Viveka and Vairaghya are the two wings which a seeker needs to carry. Whenever and wherever one comes across the anaatma vastu (unreal thing or impermanent), they need to negate or not go for it (nethi nethi). The more we talk about it or more we hear about it or more we read about it doesnt take us anywhere near. It is just like a road map. It shows us the direction to the treasure. We need to walk every day, every moment towards it. That is the way one can abide in the ultimate. Our Guruji said once that if the bulb is wound by layers of cloth, can it give us the light? The light is already there. It is not that we are going to bring something new. The whole saadhana of silence is to unwind the layers so that the light can be seen by us. We all want light and happiness in life. But we dont know the fact that with every desire we are making another layer of cloth and increasing the darkness of ignorance. Brahman is not something un- achievable. Brahman is not something outside. It is the very essence of everythingyou, me, all moving and unmoving things, known and unknown. Like if we know gold, everything made of gold can be known. If we know iron, everything made of iron I can make out. Similarly in the seat of silence, what I experience I will be able to extend the whole experience to everything I feel, touch and see. YOU SAY MY LORD, THAT THE WISE MAN PERCEIVES THE EXISTENCE OF BRAHMAN IN HIS OWN SOUL. TELL ME WHAT THE TRUE FORM AND COLOUR OF THE OMNIPRESENT AND ETERNAL BRAHMAN IS?

Neither on earth, nor in the sky, nor in waters of the ocean, is there anything like that. Neither in the stars, nor in lightning, nor in the clouds, is its form to be seen, nor is it visible in the atmosphere, nor in the Devas, nor in the moon, nor in the sun. incapable of being compassed, and lying beyond the reach of the limited intellect, even the universal Destroyer, after the dissolution, is destroyed in it. Incapable of being gazed, it is subtle as the edge of the razor, and it is grosser than the mountains. It is the basis upon which everything is founded. It is unchangeable. It is this visible universe. It is vast. It is delightful. Creatures all sprung from it and return to it. It is free from all duality. It is without any change. Katopanishad tells beautifully that He, who has known that which is without sound, without touch, without form, without decay, without waste, eternal, without smell, without beginning, without end, beyond great and unchanging, is freed from the jaws of death Shri T.T.Rangarajan in his talk on Saturday told that material path is from one to many whereas spiritual path is from many to one. Where all differences, dualities (heat and cold, pleasure and pain, maana and apamaana) end, in that silence (no disturbances from all), the truth manifests itself. Lord Krishna says in Gita that the mirror reflects everything before it clearly because of its fitness. Like the mirror if the mind is pure without any tinge of dirt, the Lord will reveal Himself to us. Once, Swami Chinmayananda was having lunch with the children in the ashram. As we know, Chinmayanandaji has a long beard. Few rice particles stuck to his beard. A child came near Swamiji and said Swamiji there is dirt in your Dhaadi. Chinmayaji took out the few par ticles of rice. He said, the rice particle in the plate is said to be annam and the same rice particle in the beard is said to dirt. Dirt is a thing lying in the unwanted place. Our emotions, attachments are all in unwanted placestowards our relatives, our properties, to our body. If the attachment is towards the Lord and we have Love for the Lord, we will be in right place in our life to win over the death. Lord Krishna says that the body is the temple and the soul is the Lord in the temple. Our focus is at present only in managing the temple walls, with different colour paints. The time we look into the Lord in us, the purpose of life is achieved. CONCLUSION: IF WE WANT TO WALK IN THE PATH OF LIGHT, WALKING IN THE PATH OF DARKNESS IS AVOIDED. IF WE WANT TO BE HAPPY, GRIEF IS AVOIDED. IF WE WANT LORD, THE WORLD IS AVOIDED. The time we chose higher

things in life, the lower automatically falls off. Let us climb up the ladder of life to reach the ultimate goal of life, to be one with the Brahman. The stagnant water always smells bad. Let us not live in that stagnant level of mind. The one lotus present in the slushy pond makes the whole pond beautiful. Every one of us can become that lotus in this slushy pond of samsara. Let us add beauty and love to life which is possible only through the jnanam that I am not this body. I am the supreme Brahman. All of us have the potential to reach the goal. For a Prime Minister post many may fight but only one wins whereas all people who win their mind becomes a Jnani and A very happy man. Win the mind and the senses and conquer the area unattended in our lives that is the LORD in our heart. Lord Krishna says in Gita 2nd chapter Some have a glimpse of Him as a marvel, some speak of Him as marvel, and yet others hear of Him as a marvel. Yet none understands Him in truth, in spite of seeing, speaking and hearing about Him. Ramana Maharishi says it is always new. Let us make ourselves fit to have the experience which is always there in us. Only the focus needs to change. We will continue how to control the thoughts and confusions in life so that we get into the silence prescribed here in the coming weeks. Part8

Todays satsangh is the concluding part of the Vidura Neethi. WHAT IS AARJAVAM? Vidura narrates the greatness of this quality Aarjavam through a conversation between Suthanva and Virochana.Aarjavam comes from the word rju or straight forwardness. It is one of the great qualities of a bhaktha. Diplomacy is needed when we go down in our values to make money or to handle power. Aarjavam means no diplomacy whatsoever. Children are straight forward. They are plain minded and they have not learned the tricks of the grownup people yet. Such a quality is highly praised in our scriptures and also by Vidura here. (When our own children do a mistake, we forgive them and support them by justifying their action. The same action if it is done by somebody else, we dont mind saying it is wrong and show all kinds of reaction to punish them. This partiality is because of the attachment of I and mine. A person becomes great if he can tell right or wrong irrespective of who is there before him. That is Aarjavam. Lord Krishna stresses on this quality in the BhagvadGita (16th chapter 1st sloka, 13th chapter 7th sloka, 17th chapter 14th sloka, 18th chapter 42nd sloka)).

Vidura now narrates the greatness of this quality Aarjavam through a conversation between Suthanva and Virochana. CONVERSATION BETWEEN SUTHANVA AND VIROCHANA Once there was a princess called Kesini. The king arranged for a swayamvara for her. Many princes from various kingdoms came for the swayamvaram. Among them there was a brahmana called Suthanva and an asura king called Virochana. Kesini came to know about both of them. When they came to meet the princess, there was a golden seat in the hall and Virochana tried to sit on that. At that time, Kesini put a question to Virochana Virochana! Who is greater, the brahmanas or the asuras? Why not the brahmana Suthanva sit on that seat? Vircohana:We are the sons of Kashyapa. So we are greater sadhus than others. All worlds belong to us. Nobody be it a deva or a brahmana is greater than us. Kesini: Virochana! We will meet in the same place tomorrow morning. At that time we will decide who is greater, you or that brahamana! Next morning, all of them assembled as planned. Virochana was sitting on the golden seat. Suthanva entered the hall. Kesini immediately got up from her seat and offered the brahmana arghyam and paadhyam. Virochana did not show any sign of respect. He offered a small place in same seat itself for Suthanva to sit. Suthanva: A father and a son can share a seat. Two kings can share a seat. Two brahmanas can share a seat. But a Kshathriya and a Brahmana cannot share the same seat. Virochana: (spoke sarcastically) It is true! You cannot sit with me. You need to sit on a wooden plank or on the Dharbhaasan. You are not qualified to sit in this high respectable seat. Suthanva: Virochana! You dont know anything. Even your father will sit down when I sit on a seat. That is the respect a Brahmana gets! Virochana: Let us not argue here. Let us go to knowledgeable ones to decide who is greater. I pledge all my properties on this. If they decide that you are greater than me, I will give all my properties to you. Suthanva: Let us keep our lives itself as a pledge as property is of no use to me.

Both of them decided to keep Prahalada (father of Virochana) himself as the judge. Suthanva told Prahalada after accepting his respect, that a father can give things to the son to show his affection to the son. But when it comes to an argument, it is wise to speak only the truth. Prahalaada remembered the instruction got from Hamsa (which accompanied the sun god) why one should speak the truth. By telling a lie for the sake of human beings, one loses all goodness in the next 1000 generations and one who tells a lie for the sake of land, loses everything in this life and hereafter. Meditating on this, Prahalada told Virochana Virochana! Angiras is the father of Suthanva who is greater than me. Suthanva by himself is greater in many aspects when compared to you. Suthanvas mother is greater than your mother. So he is greater to you in all aspects. Now your life is in the hands of Suthanva Suthanva was very happy about the judgement of Prahalada. He didnt lose his balance of mind because of his affection for his son. So Suthanva left Virochana free and also asked him to marry Kesini. VIDURAS ADVISE TO THE KING: Vidura after narrating this story to Dhrithrashtra told him that A MAN SHOULD ALWAYS SPEAK TRUTH. WHEN A MAN TELLS LIES FOR THE SAKE OF CHILDREN HE LOSES EVERYTHING IN LIFE. THE TWO GREAT EVIL QUALITIES: Then he added that seven persons should never be considered as witness (saakshi). 1) one who knows palmistry, 2) one who was a thief before and now a merchant, 3) one who uses sticks and ropes to tell fortunes, 4) a doctor, 5) enemy, 6) a friend and 7) one who has bad conduct. Vidura warned Dhrithrashtra that Sakuni belongs to category number 7. So he advised the king not to believe in him. The Iness and myness are the greatest of all evil qualities. (There are no problems without these two in our lives. When the light passes through the prism, it comes out as seven colours. When the light of life reflects through I and mine, all differences and sorrows comes out of us. The mind needs to be a plane mirror and not a prism. That is our saadhana. All devotional activities should culminate in chittha shuddhi, purity of mind. All external signs are only reflections of our ego. The inner purity is very important). SIX SHARP SWORDS WHICH KILLS OUR LIFE: The ego, more speech, doing mistakes after mistakes, anger, being selfish, not truthful to a friend these six are the sharp swords which cut off the life of a man,

not death. All these sharp swords are the properties of your children Dhrithrashtra! Let them leave all that and live happily with their brothers. (Repeating mistakes is only out of negligence. It shows our Tamasic nature, lack of awareness. Committing a mistake is not wrong but repeating a mistake is unforgivable. Drithraashtra even after listening to great peoples advice repeats mistakes because of his affection for his sons). VIDURA WARNS THE KING: The fire hidden in the wood is not harmful to anyone as long as they dont rub it. But when they rub, it burns the wood and also the entire forest. Similarly the Pandavas, who are saatvik in nature are in patience like the fire in the wood. When your children, the Kauravas rub them, they are going to be ruined and also the team associated with them. It is my final decision. With this Vidura concluded his neethi to Dhrithrashtra. He covered everything under the sun, to teach the king what is right and what he needs to take up. He clearly explained the consequences of certain behavior and how to get in line with Dharma. He explained in great detail, what is the purpose of human birth. After this beautiful discourse of Vidura, now let us listen to what our Dhrithrashtra says. DHRITHRASHTRA SAID: VIDURA ! WHATEVER YOU HAVE TOLD TO ME NOW, ARE GREAT TO HEAR AND I ACCEPT THEM WHOLE HEARTEDLY. BUT WHEN I THINK OF DURYODHANA, MY LOVE FOR HIM WINS OVER THE DHARMA. I LOSE CONTROL OF MYSELF. WHAT CAN I DO? (This is the problem in our lives too. After listening to a sathsang or to some good discourses or reading a good book, we feel it is right and it will definitely do good for us. But when it comes to practice we lose all our strength because of our attachments. Always the I and mine wins in the war. Guruji used to put a question to us. There are two foxes inside you. One is good and the other one is bad. Which will survive? The one which we feed the most only will survive. It is the truth. So many Viduras (opportunities) come across our life to keep us in line with Dharma. We fail to notice it in our busy schedule to fulfill the desires and put the same question of Drithrashtra to all the Mahatmas who come to uplift us. The beauty is we feel this question itself is the answer and nothing can be done to better the situation). CONCLUSION:

Even though we have eyes, we are considered to be blind if we miss our dharma as a human being. The whole of Bhagavad Gita talks about what is our Dharma (the Gita starts with the word mama and the last sloka of gita ends with the word dharma) and here also Vidura speaks on it. Like the king who is blind because of his affection to his sons, we are also blind not only in one aspect of life but in many aspects. The wisdom eyes need to open. All goodness need to be practiced here and now. As our Guruji often says experience is a costly school and fools learn from it. Let us wake up with the experience of the King Dhrithrashtra. One Vidura neethi is enough for us to wake up to our inner silence and walk in the path of Dharma. THE BODY CONSIOUSNESS IS THE CENTRE OF ALL PROBLEMS IN LIFE. ATTACHMENT, EGO, DESIRES AND ALL OTHER EVIL QUALITIES SPROUT WITH THE THOUGHT THAT I AM THE BODY. THERE IS A BEAUTIFUL LORD RESIDING WITHIN ALL OF US WHO IS MAKING US TO HEAR, SPEAK, SEE, TOUCH AND SMELL. HE IS THE POWER BEHIND OUR THOUGHTS AND INTELLIGENCE. LET US MAINTAIN THE TEMPLE (BODY) WELL BUT LET THE FOCUS BE ON THE DEITY INSIDE THE TEMPLE, THE EVERLASTING, ETERNAL ATMAN. HERE WE CONCLUDE THE VIDURA NEETHI