Welcome to today’s satsang. First, my humble pranams to Param Pujya Swami Tapovanji Maharaj; to Param Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayanandaji; to my dear, dear Guruji Swami Tejomayanandaji, and to one and all present here today. Today, the subject is not an Upanishad or any other text, but just an introductory session – the feelings of my heart – ‘man ki baat’ – that I wish to share with everyone here. Let me start with two questions. First, what is the greatest gift that we can give to anyone in this world? It is to give love to someone. Second, what is the greatest honour in this whole universe? It is to receive love from someone. Therefore, nikhro phoolon ki tarah, bikhro khushboo ki tarah – blossom like a flower and spread the fragrance of your love to all.
People who Test Us
In life, we meet different kinds of people. Some are there to test us. Let me give a beautiful example from the saints of Maharashtra. Sant Namdev, a very noble person, was extremely devoted to Lord Vitthala. But his understanding was rather limited. He saw the Lord only in the form of Vitthala and residing only in Pandharpur – nowhere else. Bhagwan was rather annoyed with his devotee for not understanding his real nature. So He sent a message (wifi – subtle message) to another of his dear devotees, Sant Gyaneshwar Maharaj. The saint humbly received it and duly invited Namdevji for bhiksha along with other sages. At the gathering, a very old saint, Gora Kumharji – a potter – was present. Gyaneshwarji requested him to test the readiness of the pots, “Please test all of us present here,” he said. Noticing Gora Kumharji’s surprise and reluctance, Gyaneshwarji explained that he had received a message from the Lord asking him to do so. Kumharji took the big testing stick used by potters to check whether a pot is ready or not and started hitting everyone on the head! ‘Thak’– first on Gyaneshwar Maharaj and then on Tukaram Maharaj! Both of them did not react. Next, he proceeded to hit Namdevji who started crying like a child and yelled, “I am such a great devotee of the Lord and you are treating me like this. I am leaving!” He left and complained to Lord Vitthala about his humiliating treatment. The Lord answered, “My dear devotee, I am glad; you have now understood that life can also be painful. It is time for you to go to a Guru.” Namdevji approached Guru Khecchar Swami and received guidance. All of us go through a test some time or another in our life.
People Who Teach Us
Some people are there to teach us. Mother and father are our first teachers. Then, there are so many others who give so much of learning to all of us
People Who Use Us
A famous example is of Shakuni in the Mahabharata. He had great love for his sister and resented the fact that Bhishmacharya had asked for her hand in marriage to a blind person. Unable to come to terms with this fact, he wished to take revenge on the whole Kuru dynasty and used Duryodhana as his tool.
People Who bring out the Best in Us
Sometimes, a person comes to bring out the best in us. And that is Pujya Gurudev who came into all our lives and made us realize what we have. It is very important that the focus of our life should be on the person who brings out the best in us; everything else is secondary. If someone uses us, we need not go to into a tragic mood about it. Understand that it was required. But, most important is the divine experience of the person who brings out the best in us.
What does Gurudev mean to me? What do I understand and follow every minute of my life? Gurudev is there for each one of us. He is not sitting somewhere up in the clouds. Please understand! He is there in everyone’s heart. How do we experience him?
‘We Can, We Must’
I will share my feelings. The first thing is that I follow his principle, ‘We can, We must!’ I can, I must! Is this not the best principle in the world? If you apply it to any situation of your life, you are able to come out of it easily. You know your capabilities; you have confidence in yourself; the grace of the Guru and the blessings of the Lord are with you; and you can move ahead.
‘Do your Best and leave the Rest’
I follow this second important principle right from the core of my heart. I do whatever I can to give my best and the moment I finish, I just leave it. I don’t keep anything in my heart about people, about actions or anything else. My job is to do what I can and then forget about it.
‘Keep smiling! Keep smiling! Keep smiling!’
This is the third principle which I have really inculcated and put in my heart. Gurudev is these three things for me. Find out what Gurudev means to you, and I can tell you, there will not be a single moment that he will not be with you. You will meet him; you will experience him at each and every moment – in your heart.
Gurudev pointed out that if we have a narrow vision, we will divide the people. A narrow vision is divisive; a broad vision is expansive. A person with a broad vision will try and put everything in place. He or she will always try to make more and more corrections inside, as well as outside. If we grow spiritually, we will gain a universal vision, where everything is inclusive. It is only when we gain a universal vision that we can understand the goal of the Chinmaya Mission – to give maximum happiness to maximum people for maximum time. This is very important for all of us.
Swami Prakarshananda’s inaugural satsang at CCWU New Delhi, 22 May 2016