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It will not last

Discourse of Sathya Sai Baba, Prashanthi Nilayam, 26 October 1963
Published by Sri Sathya Sai Books and Publications Trust
Web posted at Jan 13, 2001

The greatest wonder of all is that nobody knows himself, nobody struggles to know about himself, even among those who spend their lifetime in knowing about others. Your Self is something subtler than water or air or even Aakaasha (space). It must go into the eye so that you may see; it must move into the hand so that it may hold; it must move into the feet so that you may walk. The senses are inert materials; the 'I' must operate so that they may function.

That "I" is Brahman, mistaken to be separate! In the Thretha Yuga, Vaanaras were made to act and talk like Naras (humans); in the Dhwaapara Yuga, Nara was transformed into Naaraayana (God) by the grace of Naaraayana; in the Kali Yuga, the declaration is made that Nara is Naaraayana Himself. The Ghata-aakaasha (space in the pot) and the Matha-aakaasha (space in the monastery) are identical with the Mahaa-aakaasha (vast sky space); only the Upaadhis (disguises), Ghata and Matha keep up the illusion of separateness. The senses are the villains, they instill the delusion that you are the Upaadhi (body). Curb them as the bull is curbed by the nose-ring, the horse by the bit in the mouth, the elephant by the goad. When the Paandavas were traversing the Himaalayas towards the end of their careers, Dharmaraaja was still affected by mental anxieties and so he prayed to Krishna to spend some time with them. On His departure from their dwelling, Krishna gave Dharmaraaja a note, which he was to read to himself whenever he was affected by joy or grief. The note read, "Eppudoo undhadhu" (This will not last). That is one method by which mental agitations can be calmed.

You are in this World under Sentence

Take life in the world as a compulsory duty imposed on you. You are now in jail under a sentence for crimes committed in a previous birth. The Superintendent assigns various duties: cooking, drawing water, hewing wood, etc. You have to do the work assigned to the best of your ability, without any expectation of reward. If you behave well, cause no trouble, and do the assigned duties without demur, then some days may be written off your sentence and you may be released sooner, with a certificate that you are reliable and good. This attitude will give you practice in Nishkaamakarma (selfless action), which is very valuable for curbing the senses.

When you talk of God to some people, they ask, "We will believe, only if we can see Him." When the Vidhwanmahaasabha Pandiths go to the villages for their mission of spreading the truths of the Vedhas, this question will crop up. Then you have to ask them: "I won't believe that you have pain unless I can see pain with my eyes." God is bliss, how can bliss be shown and seen? Whether others believe or not, 2 plus 2 is equal to 4. You may agree or refuse to agree, but, that is a fact, proved by the experience of all those who agree. So too is the fact of God.

Live in constant Thought of God

You must live in the constant thought of God as well as of another fact, death. The body is the car in which you are riding to death. You may meet death any moment, while riding; some tree or lorry or ditch or slush will bring it. Remember death. Remember that time is running out every moment; then, you will not be tempted to waste time in idle talk or vain pursuits or wanton mischief or vulgar entertainment. Travel in the car carefully, slowly, with due regard to the needs of others on the road; do not greedily try to overtake others, or compete in speed, know the limitations of the vehicle and the road! And then, you will not meet with any accident. Your journey will be a happy experience for you and the rest of the people.

Jonnalagadda Sathyanaaraayanamurthy in his speech was exhorting you to teach, to reform, to reconstruct and do many other things. But, not all can enter upon such tasks.

First, self; then, help, improve yourself, teach yourself, reconstruct yourself - and, then proceed to solve the problems of others. That reconstruction is quite easy, provided you inquire calmly into your own personality - "Am I the body, or the senses or the mind or the Buddhi, etc.?" You heard in the Burrakatha (folk tale) on Shivaaji, how Goddess Bhavaani gave the sword to him. This Shiva-Shakthi will give you the Jnaanakhadga and the Subodhakhadga (the sword of spiritual knowledge and spiritual instruction) that will destroy the forces of Ajnaana. Take it and become wise and happy.