Hotter than the raging SUN

Dear Seekers of Truth

You may think that proximity to a powerful Avadhoota like Atmananda meant that we got to discuss deeper levels of spirituality all the time. On the contrary, we hardly spoke spiritual matters. I found the same when Atmananda met other powerful masters. They discussed nothing – literally nothing spiritual. To me, the meeting of two masters felt like two suns merging to give more light. No words (medium) were needed. Whenever you get a chance to stay with liberated masters, make sure that you observe, but not imitate them. Imitating them will only give us certain character traits or habits. Observing them will give us detachment and awareness of perfect love in action.

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It is beautiful to watch someone who wants nothing from earth, walking the earth. We start to look with total detachment and even indifference towards every desire of every person who we see around us, or who have come to our Guruji for blessing them with a quick fix solution for some of their favourite dimensions of “glorious” lusts such as money, name, fame, possessions etc. Guruji, detached as he was from himself, would sometimes look at them, sometimes ignore them. He deliberately wore the robe of a powerless, often eccentric, ordinary sadhu. This must have saved him from various greedy bodies.

Rarely, we get to speak something spiritual with Guruji. Usually, it happened as a reflection of someone’s visit. Here are a few glimpses. Once he said. “Buddha has said ‘Human tongue is more dangerous than a sword. It leaves lasting wounds. It injures people more than a sword. The injuries that tongues create are hard to heal.’ ” We could understand that most calamities of life are created by relative truths or partial truths translated by prejudiced and speculative minds and articulated by our boneless tongues. This reminds me of various beautiful things that Buddha has said which perfectly suited our Guruji’s level of existence.

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“The most distant place for us is our past. No amount of money or time can take us there.”

“The biggest, highest and tallest mountain in this world is human lust. Nothing is more difficult to conquer for the human mind than lust.”

“The hardest thing to keep in this world is a tiny promise. Things are easier said than done. If promises are not delivered, man takes more lives too, to complete it. Hence promises are quite detrimental. If unfulfilled, it increases karmic weight.”

“The quality that makes one feel lightest in this world is humility which comes out of maturity and awareness. There is nothing lighter to mind than humility. When man chases name, fame and fortune, this is lost.”

“The closest to us is death. Death is closer to us than any human relationship and is the only unavoidable relationship.”

“The easiest thing to do for liberating oneself in this world is to spread the message of our loving Guru while spreading love with our very existence unconditionally. Your personal wealth has nothing to do with it. If you are afraid to talk about your Guru who gave you himself, you are a hypocrite. Grace will not enter your doorway. Hypocrisy prevents grace.”

One “holy day”, after he spent time with a seemingly aloof wandering sadhu, Guruji said. “We all are liars. We are lying all the time. Whenever I say I am Atmananda, I am lying. This body is called Atmananda. I am not. Whenever people talk with identifications, which are all temporary, they are lying because whatever is temporary is not the ultimate truth. Look around, no animals will tell you that they are a bull or a monkey. They are unbound by their incarnations. We are so eager to maintain our ego and identifications. Whenever we begin to articulate who we are in terms of terrestrial existence, we are further and further detaching from the original truth. Hence, we must realise that we are all liars. Glorious liars who love to maintain those lies and are even proud of it. I am not an Avadhoota or even Atmananda. These are all identifications that the society has given me for their sake about my state and form. This is their need and not mine. I am free.” He continued “Likewise, we identify ourselves with fleeting emotions and make them ours. We are not the emotions either. We are free. Unless this is understood, there are will be pains.

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“Desires are traps. One spontaneously leads to the other. They also change forms and nature. Desires cause illusions and hallucinations. It takes us further and further away from liberation”.

This story is about some of Guruji’s followers like Ramappa, Srinath and my own self as well as some experiences of Guruji that I would like to share that provide a window into his glorious stature. Guruji was like a flowing river. Before joining Guruji, each disciple had traveled a good distance on their spiritual journey along their own paths based on their constitution. Guruji facilitated their orientations – bhakti yoga, jnana yoga, etc – and, subsequently, they moved on and carried forward in their chosen path.

Once a middle-aged person named Ramappa walked with us while we walked with Gurudeva. Gurudeva did not have the habit of acknowledging, welcoming or receiving anybody who chose to walk with him. He probably would not even notice.

Guruji did not like conversations. We have seen Guruji watching cows or other animals intently for hours on. We used to say amongst ourselves that Guruji is liberating them through his eyes. In fact, he looked at animals with more attention than he ever looked at people. One such occasion, which is about a week after Ramappa joined us, Guruji was witnessing a pack of cows in a field. Ramappa went close to him and told him “Gurudeva, my desire of this life is higher levels of Samadhi. Bless me and help me”. Guruji did not answer for some time. Later, he said, “Watch and witness cows.” That was it. He said nothing else. He got up and started walking. Ramappa sat there and continued what Gurudeva was doing and had asked him to do. When we were leaving with Gurudeva who walked quite fast, we saw Ramappa totally absorbed in observing cows.

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Many years later, after Guruji attained his mahasamadhi, (a saint’s conscious exit from the body), I had the good fortune of seeing Ramappa, quite unknowingly, who by that time had attained great spiritual heights. I did not recognise him. I was coming back with a few companions towards my abode from the north of Bharat, after our annual dips in Ganga during Kumbh Mela. We happened to spend the evening and night at the ashram of a saint whom we had not known before. Most ashrams host people going or returning from Kumbh Mela without expectations. This is still the tradition. The chief of that ashram had a flowing white beard and bald head. He hosted us with kindness and elegance.

In the evening, after dinner at sunset, he gave a discourse to his disciples. It flowed somewhat like this, “Gurudeva asked me to observe cows and walked away. (this is when I felt he could be Ramappa) I considered this as a diksha (initiation) and sat at the same place that Gurudeva sat and started practicing. In the beginning, I saw only the bodies of cows. I saw only their activities. Every day, I did this one practice which Gurudeva had initiated me with. A few days later, I could recognise each and every cow that grazed in that field. Soon, I started seeing their character and the difference between them. I started noticing how they behaved. I saw their behavioural differences as well as their hierarchies and mannerisms.

They showed no hurry at any time. They were peaceful always. They ate only what they needed. They were very patient. They never complained or even made an unnecessary sound. They accepted the surroundings and realities without any complaints. They were tolerant. They never complained of rain or sunshine. They were consistent in what they did. They never got bored with the environment. I learned many things from them. Concentration, Acceptance, Consistency, Commitment, No anxiety or comparisons, No complaints, and more than anything stable mind, peaceful to the core. I realised that samadhi states need these qualities. Samadhi itself is a stillness of mind. And these animals taught me that.

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Day and night, I sat near that grazing ground and as these gentle beings wandered, I followed them. They became my gurus. I learned the great secrets of life from them. Everything begins with acceptance. I understood why my Gurudeva always watched animals and sat in meditative state. He was witnessing the states of samadhi that nature displays through every plant, tree, leaves, and all beings of nature. I also realised that they do not eat after sunset and will start eating only after sunrise. They followed the sun. I also surrendered myself to the sun and the sun became my guru too. Ramappa continued.

Ramappa’s explanation ascertained to me that he was referring to my Guru too – Avadhoota Atmananda Chaitanya! He has given enlightenment to many through a casual word or sentence which became a piercing command that time proved later. Here I would like you to understand one important point. My Gurudeva in his usual unassuming way, taught Ramappa and through Ramappa to all of us, one important practice – Practicing Awareness. Usually all gurus initiated their disciples into contemplation (manana) or Meditation (dhyana) or some rituals to reach levels of samadhi. Here, Atmananda taught “Awareness” through observing the cows which is neither manana or dhyana. Cows had no anxiety over future nor much visible hang ups over past. No prejudices and fears as explained by Ramappa. They were in the present always, in tune with their body as well as nature in total acceptance. This is an important lesson in spirituality. Being in NOW. Being in awareness. This is a space between manana and dhyana.

When Ramappa paused his narration, I introduced myself to him and told the audience that I was there when this incident happened. Ramappa could not contain his tears. He got up and tried to prostrate at my feet in deep reverence for my Guru. I did not allow that. Instead, I embraced him. We both could not contain our tears of happiness. We held each other for some time. Then I spoke “Ramappa, I am so happy to see you not only because you have attained higher levels of Samadhi as per your wish, with the grace of our Gurudeva, but because you are imparting and explaining the unorthodox methods of our Gurudeva to your students too. You are keeping his memories alive.

Not many understood our Gurudeva. He has given such guidance to thousands. Perhaps a word, a glance, a sentence or physical demonstration through his own life. But not even five percent of people who came to him understood it or caught that thread and moved on in life as you did. He gave the rope to everybody in a casual way.

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Our Guru has left his body and he insisted that his body should not become a burden to earth. He was formally cremated. (Hearing about the death of Atmananda, Ramappa’s smile vanished and tears filled his eyes.) Also, He has written nothing except what he wrote in our hearts and minds. Ramappa, today I am happy. When I hear our Guru’s words through you, I feel so happy and proud. He allowed us to walk with him and through his own life, he taught us invaluable lessons. A perfect Avadhoota. He had no emotions. He never complained. He never cried. He existed without existing. He lived without living. He was always and is always with us.”

Ramappa said with tears “I just wish that I will not fall again into the lures of this world.”

I said, “When you are under the protection of a master like Atmananda, you never need to worry about any fall in spirituality. There won’t be a state of Yoga Bhrashta (fall from grace). Atmananda as a guru will never permit that. Our Guru was seldom understood because he hardly expressed himself. His life was his message. If people did not understand his life, they did not understand his message also. I have always observed his habit of observing animals keenly. He spent lots of time doing just that. He often forgot his own body, time, hunger, weather and sat watching animals and birds. Now, with your narration, I got a clear insight as to why he was observing them as well as what he was seeing with such interest. He was teaching us the greatest of philosophies, of acceptance and surrender. Thank you”. We embraced each other again with deep and heartfelt emotions.

I was genuinely happy to see Ramappa, especially because of the stage in spirituality that he had achieved and also was grateful towards our Guruji who made all this possible. We stayed the night and left after consuming the fresh breakfast that Ramappa’s disciples served to us. Ramappa did not consume anything after sunset or before sunrise. We did the same and we decided that we will not consume any food after sunset hereafter. We decided to follow the teachings of the sun.

We bid good bye to Ramappa with this comforting thought, “A true teacher never dies. He stays as a thought, teaching or reminder through various minds well beyond his death”.

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Another disciple of Guruji was Srinath who was like a shadow to Guruji. He joined Gurudeva before my time and was with Guruji until his mahasamadhi. He never mentioned about his past but someone had mentioned that one of his parents remarried and his step parent was not very happy with him. He would be stting quiet all the time, not doing any work and always in a meditative state. His parents thought that he was wasting his life and will have no food to eat after their death. So they threw him out of the house so he could find a job and support himself. Having left the house, he did not really care much and would be sitting by the side of a shop or in the park or in some other place in isolation.

Sometime later, an avadhoota passed him by and told him only one thing, “Your path is the sky!” Since he did not have any initiation, he would keep sitting and staring at the sky. His whole meditation was being the sky, nothing else! He only needed one sentence as a means to connect. His mind was connecting to the sky continously. Sky means full of expansion – blue sky, cloudless sky. Over time, he spontaneously shifted into shyambhavi mudra and he expanded beyond the body.

Nothing mattered to him anymore and that was when he met his Guru, Atmananda. He was sitting by the side of a shop staring at the sky, as was his usual practice, when Atmananda was walking past him. Atmananda just looked at him, didn’t say a word and gestured with his eyes to join him. Srinath immediately followed Atmananda and never left him. He saw the sky in Atmananda i.e., his Guru had the form of the sky (his body was as vast as the sky). All his life, Atmananda, except for his presence, did not give him anything – no guidance. When he found the Master, he realized that his Master was the sky i.e., he had no boundaries. That was what the avadhoota meant when he told him that his path was the sky.

He would be sitting like a statue almost like Guruji. He was an introverted person and hardly spoke. Whenever somebody asked him something like,”When would Guruji wake up? Is there something you can do?”, he would just stare back blankly at them. Hence, he was completely ignored by people since there was no point in talking to him. People would tease him and make fun of him. But that never bothered him. Whatever Guruji said, he immediately did blindly without thinking whether it is right time, right place, right situation, etc. No questions asked and absolutely no thinking or reasoning before carrying out the command – that kind of attitude. If Guruji had asked him to jump off a mountain, he would jump. That kind of perfect obedience.

Guruji usually never did rituals for the most part. However, sometimes he would light a fire and make some offerings to the fire. It would be for somebody probably in some  part of the world (or universe) but he would never explain why he was doing it. Like he would take food in his hand and offer it to the fire because someone was probably hungry somewhere or something was meant to happen elsewhere. Once, during the rare occasions that Guruji was doing some ritual, he asked Srinath to take a bath in the river and come back immediately. The river was overflowing and it was extremely dangerous to enter the river since one would just get swept away by the swelling waters.

That did not deter him at all. He just jumped into the river and was pulled into the river by the gushing waters. The river dragged him a a couple of kilometers away before he could manage to swim and somehow get to the river bank. From there, he ran all the way to reach Atmananda just in time as he was finishing his ritual. People asked him if he was gone mad to jump into a river in spate. He did not answer and just smiled.

When Atmananda was sitting under the tree before taking mahasamadhi, he was also sitting under the tree. Their consciousness merged and he became like a shadow of Atmananda by the time Atmananda left the body. Atmananda had taken over, removed whatever karma was left in balance and dissolved him. Soon after Atmananda took mahasamadhi, he also left his body in a week’s time. Just as Atmananda had done before taking samadhi, he also sat under the tree and stopped eating and drinking. By that time, he must have reached high levels of samadhi. But no one knows. Since he never articulated. He never displayed himself. He never tried to prove.

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Atmananda neither had any kind of habits nor was he concerned about food. He mostly ate whatever he got in hand. Otherwise he never cared. He never went in search of food or to gather bhiksha (alms). There are some places where bhiksha was provided, but he would just say, “Let’s walk”. Some of his followers would want to stay back and have bhiksha. For e.g., like there were certain places pockets where the king used to ensure  bhiksha. Atmananda never cared so people seldom brought food for him. Even if they brought food, he would take a look at it and then just feed birds or cows – he will feed whoever is around and not take the food himself. There was nothing much to do for Atmananda. He didn’t need any service. Basically, we can’t serve a Master.

My Gurudeva, Atmananda, was an epitome of freedom. Listen to him in deep silence. You will hear his words echoing from deep within us.

“When you think you are something, it is ridiculous. When you say you are nothing, it is ridiculous too. When you realise you are NO THING, you start experiencing FREEDOM.”
“Beyond personal identifications and frames lies the TRUTH of existence.”

Atmananda said, “No hearts connected to consciousness will starve for presence.” I have experienced this many times. One time, before I started wandering with my Gurudeva, I was stuck in an argument with a group of people over a small matter, I was about to get beaten up because of my aggression. I had only met Guruji once or twice at that time, that too within a few years gap. As usual, He had shown indifference to me. My ego considered it as “indifference”, instead of a test of endurance, and decided to not to meet him anymore.

When this incident happened, the young ruffians was almost getting ready to beat me up. Suddenly, I saw Guruji walking in and with a firm voice said “Stop. He is my follower. Leave him alone.” The people who were trying to beat me froze and then retreated. Guruji looked into my eyes and said, “Mahendra, come”. I have no idea how he knew my real name. We never spoke let alone give details of where I was from. Anyway, he started walking and I followed him. That is the beginning of my journey with him. I never left him ever again. And it surprises me to no ends when I wonder how he reached the spot that I was at during that moment of crisis. Later, I realised that his seeming indifference is only a mask. He is well aware and well in control of everything that is happening around him and beyond him, especially in the lives of people who connect with him with love and honesty.

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I shall conclude this by one more narration. Some glimpses of his stature or state. As I mentioned earlier, he was unbound and free; he was not attached to anything nor detached from anything. He was in everything. He treated a human and non-human with equal respect. He had command over weather and the elements which he seldom displayed. He would walk in rain and thunder while we know that he could either choose a shelter or stop the frenzy of rain. When we pester him to stop until the weather clears, he would say “Do not disturb the elements”. I later realised that we should not interfere in the eternal flow of nature even if we have the power as well as we should keep our internal elements in harmony for a good life without excesses.

I looked upon Gurudeva as the likeness of the water element – always going with the flow. After his mahasamadhi, I endeavoured to create a likeness of his image to allow me to keep him in memory. My sincere love and respect for him created this unselfish desire. However,  I was mindful of the fact that Gurudeva had clearly told us that he did not want any trace of his existnce to remain on earth. That prompted his final wish to be cremated and the ashes to be dispersed in the holy rivers. Despite the doubts, I used all of my sculpting skills to create the statue and installed it on the bathing ghat where I used to take my daily bath. This allowed me to be in his presence and worship him every day. A few years later, the river was in spate and the flooding waters came by and took the statue away leaving no traces of my Gurudeva’s existence as he had desired.

Following this incident, I consecrated a set of padukas (holy sandals) in his name and installed them at the ghat. My Gurudeva’s power was evident by the fact that the water from the river would gently touch the padukas and recede. The same river that washed away the much taller statue never flown over the padukas. In hindsight, I feel that my doubts relating to his final wish while creating the statue resulted in it being washed away. If my unselfish desire was resolute, I would still have had the good fortune to worship his physical form in the form of the statue. Doubts shake the foundation that is cemented strongly by faith.

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I was also very fortunate to get a glimpse that he existed well beyond the boundaries of earth. That left me in awe. One evening at a sanctuary near a forest clearing, when all were asleep, I had left Gurudeva near the fire that he always kept burning whenever we could. He would sit there the whole night looking into the fire. Fire is a symbol of existence in nonexistence as it easily converts any matter into ash. It was a mild fire. Where Gurudeva was sitting there, I saw that it was just fire. There was no form of my beloved Gurudeva. Just fire. I realised at that moment that Gurudeva is definitely not the finite body that we are used to. He could easily convert himself into any of the elements that constituted the body. That time he had dissolved all elements and became just fire to talk to the external fire.

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On another occasion, when a village head came to see him with some dakshina (offerings), he asked him to talk about his Guru. Guruji just looked blankly at the sky and said, “How can I ever praise the glory of my Guru? I can never fathom him. Nobody can know him. My limited intellect cannot measure his dimensions. It is only his grace that gets revealed within me as an awareness of his presence, let alone his stature. I am far too small to know his stature. Nothing can describe him. He is truly unfathomable.”

He stopped, thought for a while and continued “He is hotter than the raging fire. Cooler than the coolest breeze. Brighter than a million suns. Faster than the swords of lightning. Louder than the drums of a thousand thunder. He is more innocent than a newborn child. He is purer than the purest. He is action in inaction. He is my mother and father and all relatives put together. He has no father, mother, beginning or end. The whole manifested universe is nothing but a mole on his glorious face. He is unfathomable. He is free. He is not bound by the universe and the universe is not bound by him. He is freedom. He is bliss. He is myself.”

That sums up the stature of my Gurudeva. I humbly submit this at His lotus feet.

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Yours

Mahendra Manu

Disclaimer:

Atmananda is a fictional character created by Mohanji to explain the Tradition. Any resemblance to the living or dead is purely coincidental.

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Causes and Effects – Satsang with Atmananda

Atmananda was walking alone for a few months without companions. These situations of walking alone happened only a couple of times in his life of 49 years in the body known as Atmananda. The incident given below happened during his parivrajaka (wandering monkhood) time soon after he left his Gurukul (Master’s abode). Atmananda was sitting in meditation at a ghat (river bank) in Benaras (Varanasi) after taking a bath. It was early hours. Some people brought a dead body for cremation at the ghat. Some relatives were crying as the dead body was washed before the cremation. Some people looked relieved. Before 7 AM, about six dead bodies were treated and prepared for cremation at the ghat. Atmananda was in deep meditation and was not aware of anything around him. At around 8AM, he opened his eyes to see a group of men and women standing around him to have his blessings.

He was usually averse to any attention from anyone. Being perhaps in his early 20s at that time, he was not yet ready to wear the burden or responsibilities of “Guruhood”. He tried to get away from this looming crowd. But, they started falling at his feet and closed all escape routes. So, he sat down and started blessing them. They took extra care not to touch Atmananda because of the belief of being impure after the cremation. As per the Hindu system, relatives of the dead usually stay away from sacred spaces and people such as Gurus or God’s premises for about 14 days after the death of a relative. Soon after this prostration ritual, one elderly bald man requested Atmananda to clear the doubts of some of the people who assembled there. Atmananda who was practicing levels of silence with his Guru and while wandering as well, half-heartedly agreed. What follows is the communication that happened between Atmananda and the mourning group that had assembled there.

Q: Death is inevitable. We all know that all that is born will die. Then why are we suffering so much?

Atmananda – Ownerships and attachments of relationships and familiarity. We become used to the presence of bodies around us, start owning it and start developing emotions around those bodies. You are sad because of your attachment and ownership.
Rewards of life are fruits of your own attitude, expressions, and actions. Your mind is your own enemy and friend. Whatever you experience is your own creation born out of your own disposition. Every experience has its own invisible root spreading itself into the past.

Q: My uncle (whom we just cremated) suffered a lot before his death. In fact, we are all relieved that now he is free from suffering. What kind of action or karma causes that kind of suffering?

Atmananda – Actions of impure nature causes that kind of suffering. It could be from this life or other lives. When one goes against another person, displays hatred, anger, jealousy, so on and so forth, they accumulate heavy karma. If the collection is such karma, suffering is inevitable. Whatever we do against another, comes back to us, sooner or later – in this life or another. There is no escape or reduction possible in karma. What you do in life, good or bad, affects not just you, but leaves an inherited impact on all the people born in your lineage. Every person in every lineage must know this and be responsible.


Q: What is the solution?
Atmananda – Good deeds. Merits that we earn through good thoughts, words and actions. Lead a conscious and contented life. Do not greed over other people’s possessions that karma has distributed as per their karmic merits. Be aware that your own actions have brought your experiences of life. Nothing can be changed. Future can be changed if you lead a conscious life today.

He paused, thought for a while and continued, “I advise you to avoid a situation, a place or a person that disturbs your mind or your mental stability. Avoid being influenced by other minds. If you cannot totally avoid, at least ignore all of these and do not take inside the effects of their presence. Instead, focus inside and chant the name of your chosen god or guru. Stay away from things that make your mind restless and give preference to inner peace and tranquillity of mind. When everything we do is in surrender to God or Guru, we come close to the supreme consciousness. Embrace external things that do not affect your inner tranquillity. Avoid the rest. Live a simple, benevolent life.”

Q: Will our actions affect our children and their children?
Atmananda – Yes. Whatever you earn, your children and their children will inherit. Lineage always carries the burden of individuals that it has given birth to. Lineage holds collective karma of family members. This is inherited in various degrees by all its off-springs. When family members do great acts of good deeds, the effects reach every person in the family just as a feast in the family reaches every stomach.

Q: What can be the worst situation for any lineage?
Atmananda – Passive, selfish and indifferent people as well as insensitive generations born in it. Just like the air in a room becomes stale when the windows and doors are closed for a long time, selfish and passive people of a generation stagnate the lineage. Selfishness and self-centeredness is bad karma. Giving and sharing from the heart brings fresh air into the room. We can call it grace. created out of positive action.

Q: What can we do from today?
Atmananda – Be responsible. Know that you are not just an individual. You are a lineage. Respect your position and the power to make the lineage a better place for those before you and those that are yet to come. Be good and do good. That is the secret. Share and grow. Life should be totally selfless and free. Give more than you take. Be kind always. Be generous. Respect saints and spiritual people. Respect farmers as they are working hard in the rain and sun so that you do not sleep hungry. Respect the lawmakers and law protectors. Because of them, you are safe and protected. Respect children, because they learn from you to respect their contemporaries. Maintain purity and maintain peace. Never compromise inner peace for anything external. It is not worth it.

Avoid all situations of praises and applause. Even if destiny brings you accolades and applause, understand that everything is temporary and be humble about it. Never fall prey to ego or get addicted to your possessions and relations. Consider everything you have as a gift from God and handle it with respect. Be always aware that whatever comes will leave too. Never cry over what is lost and disrespect what you have. Life is moment to moment. What this moment has given you is your present (gift). Next moment may take it away and replace that space with another reality. Keep flowing through these realities without attachments or expectations. We can own nothing here. Nothing belongs to us here. All experiences have eligibility behind it. We earned those experiences – good or bad. Be grateful when the world respects you or disrespects you. Both are just experiences as well as lessons. Learn to detach from everything using awareness as the thread. The key awareness is the basic nature of our own existence – impermanence. Your own conscience is your personal guide. Be a friend to your own conscience and never do anything that will affect it. Rest in your conscience which is your personal protection from all negative karma. Adulation is an addiction. It is indeed a trap. The result is spiritual stagnation. Mind rules instead of giving way for the consciousness to shine forth.

Q: What can we really call ours?
Atmananda – Memories of experiences, desires and merits/demerits of our expressions and actions. Merits and demerits of our past lives determine the flavour of this life and the lives beyond. If one has done spiritual practices with concentration and dedication through lifetimes, he will be born in the company, family or lineage of saints and holy men and will have the opportunity to continue their practice until dissolution based on the quality and quantity of their karmic baggage.

Q: What is the core of human existence?
Atmananda – Dharma, Artha, Kama, Moksha (Righteousness, Materials, Desires, and Liberation respectively) – which is together called as Purushartha.

Q: What is the wise way of handling these aspects of existence?
Atmananda – Let Moksha be the thread. Make Moksha the thread and make the other aspects the beads of the garland. When liberation is the thread, all other aspects will remain pure and righteous. When the key theme of life is liberation, life will be pure and truthful.

Q: Is that why these young men are sitting here near the burning human bodies?
Atmananda – Some are sitting here just to avoid the cold winter as they have no money and nowhere else to go. Some are sitting to conquer their fears of death. Some, who are much more advanced, are witnessing the state of the dead who used to walk the earth with pride and ego, over their possessions and achievements. And the ash they wear on their bodies is a reminder to themselves and others that we are essentially just ash. Ash is also the sign of total detachment from all possessions of life.

Fire is a sign of the truth that has no discrimination. Death is the inevitable truth. Minds fear truth. It fears death. Fear is ignorance. When mind constantly watches bodies burning to ashes, it overcomes its fears and establishes itself in inevitable truth. Fear is against liberation. Having no fear is a sign of the liberated state. Those who are sitting here with abundance are avoiding the fearful society ridden by emotions and they are not interested in material possessions including name and fame. Everything can become detrimental and delay the liberation process and induce more births and deaths. So, one must be steadfast in his determination for liberation. Nothing else matters.

Q: Karma follows man beyond his grave. How can we prevent karma?
Atmananda – Good and bad actions maintain duality of existence. Good actions are those that make us lighter, expand our hearts and earn us merits. Bad actions are those that come out of hatred, revenge, enmity, and anger which makes us heavier and binds us to the web of relationships by earning us demerits. Both good and bad actions keep us in the web of karma and keep bringing us back through many wombs. Dependency on the external world keeps us in the karmic web. Ownership of actions and manipulations of mind maintains us here, birth after birth. Turning inward and steadily getting out of all dependencies of earth, and establishing oneself into oneself is the only way to break the karmic web.

Reduced dependency on anything and anybody, as well as no expectations over anything, will help us maintain detachment. Awareness that this body is decaying every moment and we are all walking towards our inevitable end is essential. All that is born will die. Hence, the state of not being born must be explored and established into. This is essential for liberation. At some point in life, like you just did, this question will come to everybody’s mind – what is this drama for? The answer is, divinity is experiencing itself in multiple frequencies using duality as the medium. This is the awareness that is needed to stay afloat without drowning into the pool of karma.

Q: Do we have a choice?
Atmananda – Yes. Always. Staying detached as a witness from emotions and expectations is our choice. Always being aware that this whole life is a show and looking inward to our stable soul that is unaffected by anything inside and anything outside is our choice. Avoiding ego and identification to this incarnation is our choice. Detachment from our outside and inside world is our choice. Avoiding ownership of people and possessions is our choice which helps us stay liberated. To share, care and love ourselves and all things around us, is our choice.

Q: Can you be our guru?
Atmananda – No. Your guru is already within you. People like me are only guides.
A short while later, he added, “I am a wanderer. I carry nothing with me. If you walk with me, I will not object, because the path belongs to everyone who choose to walk. But, walking is your own choice and responsibility, as well as staying or leaving is your prerogative. I will have nothing to do with it.”

Q: Guru and grace are synonymous. Is it not guru’s grace that helps liberation?
Atmananda – Remembrance is important. We forget the grace aspect of life when mind marries negativity and pessimism. That leads to disillusionment and depression. Therefore, we have stories of masters and avatars in literature. We call them “good history” or “good stories”. If we forget the good things a guru has given you and remember only the imaginary bad things which pessimistic minds churn out from illusions, usually based on concepts and prejudices, the negative aspect of it, like poison, spreads through our “bloodstream” (system) and will waste many lifetimes. Grace flows when surrender happens. When grace stops, negative feelings envelop mind. Like a person looking through yellow glass sees everything as yellow, man sees only negative things around him. Mind will convert everything positive into negative. Guru and grace leave such minds.

Atmananda got up. Everyone got up too. Bowing down to his audience with full reverence, he walked away without looking back.

Disclaimer:
Atmananda is a fictional character created by Mohanji to explain the Tradition. Any resemblance to the living or dead is purely coincidental.

Mohanji’s New Year Message 2018: Sadhana and Silence

Hello, everybody! It’s a great pleasure to meet you again towards the end of this year. Most of us have met each other during some part of this year, but it gives me immense pleasure to talk to you again at the end of this year. We have discussed so many aspects of life and have practised so many things during the course of this year. The whole idea has been to attain more and more inner silence. Now we have decided that we should accent on practices, sadhana, and silence in the next year. So the aspect of life should be based on sadhana (practices) and silence.

Mohanji in prayer.jpeg

When I say ‘practices’, the practices that suit you are the best for you. We have a lot of practices which the tradition has given us, but if they do not match with our frequency, they don’t work for us. So it’s important that we practise what suits us. There are so many things, methods, systems we have got through time from great masters, and we have continued through various paths towards the higher levels of awareness.

Let us understand life in comparison to a football match. There are two teams, one team is trying to score the goal into the other team’s goal post, and similarly, the other team is trying to score the goal into this team’s goal post. Your aim is to take the ball or take your purpose all the way to the other goal post. There are many obstacles, many people will come and try to block you from achieving the goal. If you are holding on your skills sufficiently, you can effortlessly take the ball to the goal post and successfully score the goal. Likewise, the other party will also try to score their goals into your goal post, which you have to prevent.

Mohanji quote - We must prevent entry of negative

So this is the game of life. We must prevent the entry of negative substances through thoughts, words, actions and through body, mind, intellect. We must prevent only the negative coming in while we should let the positive come in, viz. positive thoughts, good words, good actions. That helps you and rejuvenates you. Meanwhile, you have to carry the goodness that means your ability to attain the highest, all the way through life to the fulfilling end – completion. In other words, if you look at life like a football match, you have to be in the game, continue with the activity and take it to completion. You should be steady in it, otherwise, you will not win.

Another option which people usually try is that they don’t play the game at all. In the football match, many people are passive and sometimes some people are not even active. Many people just watch. They just comment. They have judgements about players, goals, activities, etc. You always have to expect that. A lot of people look at you, comment and make judgments of what you do, etc. But you have to continue to do what you are good at, what you have to do. This means take the ball all the way to the opposite goal post i.e. you have to achieve what you have to achieve. In terms of spirituality, the highest you can achieve is more and more inner silence – higher levels of states of silence of mind (samadhi). So the higher you go in silence, the less you are affected by the world outside. The world will always be the world. It has every variety, all dimensions but what affects us depends on how vulnerable we are or how open we are for everything to come in.

Mohanji - The deeper you go into silence

Indeed it’s important that we must safeguard i.e. protect ourselves as best as we can, from all the negative things that could come in. Just like a doubt – a doubt can come in and can delay the process. Self-doubt is the worst doubt. If a player does not believe that he can score a goal, he cannot take the ball forward. Every player should believe that they can do the best and the rest is teamwork. Everybody can help each other. But for teamwork to happen, every player should have faith in themselves. Like we should believe that we can actually achieve it and we should have faith in ourselves and then we should take it forward until the end. So each person has to attain some kind of intense conviction. Without conviction, there is no way you can take the ball to the goal post.

Worried teenager woman on the beach in winter

Some of you are aware of how people play the cricket match. The aim of every bowler is to get the batsman out. The aim of every batsman is to score more. Similarly, there will be opposition while you practise anything. There will be many, many obstacles. Their aim is to get you out of this practice. So our job is to make sure we score great runs, that we succeed in the match. Be a good batsman and always be aware that every ball coming to you is a potential out. You can be out with this ball. When you have to defend, defend, when you have to play, play, always be in the game and continue with the game.

Mohanji quote - There will be opposition

I compare real life to a football match (or cricket match) because these matches are very close to our spiritual practices. Many people come with great enthusiasm and go through a certain motion for a long time. Then something comes along, they get deviated and they don’t come back. It’s not a loss for any guru, tradition or a path. It’s their personal loss. If you deviate from the path and you become abandoned in your own way, or you get caught up with worldly affairs and you are stuck in so many things which are not so important in life, a lifetime gets wasted. Literally lifetimes get wasted. So each lifetime is very important, this incarnation, this body is hard-won. It took a long time to reach here to this level of awareness.

We have taken many bodies to reach this level of awareness where we can understand whatever we can understand in this life to attain this frequency. We don’t know this fact and that is much better. . So do not take this life for granted. Use it well. Using it well means attaining the highest silence you can attain with this life. This is the best you can do with any lifetime. By increasing the awareness, not getting caught up with the world outside, not entering into judgements, comparisons, confusions, etc and keeping yourself steady in the path of liberation. When I say “the path of liberation” it also means detachment from so many things around. The fewer desires, the lighter you become. If you have fewer desires, you become that much lighter. This is important.

Mohanji quote - Do not take this life for granted

So whatever you practise should be aimed at more and more and more inner silence. Silence is your friend. It is your benchmark. Increasing our depth of silence is exactly what we want with the lifetime. Each year passing, 2018 is coming. Before we know it, 2018 will have happened and 2019 will come. Each year is important, each day is important. Time is important. We must make one decision. Past is finished, we cannot change it. It’s gone. But today we can do something. This day, this moment, this time is ours. Do not waste this time, this moment. Enjoy this time, experience this moment, be aware that you are here and it’s precious. This life is precious. Everything is important.

With that clear awareness, walk the path and help others to walk the path, too. When I say “help others to walk the path” it doesn’t mean to force them because by forcing you are actually creating an aversion in them, not giving them a better understanding. The best way you can give a better understanding to anybody is through life itself. You live it. Go through the process, live it and show to the world what it actually means to be silent. And inner silence shows, when you are not affected by thing around you. Otherwise, confusions, anger, hatred, jealousy, judgments, criticism, gossiping, etc will be all over you, controlling you and pushing you forward.

Mohanji Ganeshananda Giri and Sai Baba.jpeg

So the year 2018 is just around the corner. In a couple of days’ time, we will be crossing over to 2018. I wish you a great year ahead, a great year of silence, a great year of awareness and a great year of togetherness. I will probably meet all of you in the days to come. I hope that we will all meet, and even if we don’t, we are all connected in consciousness. We are always related. We are all connected in consciousness, that’s what united us and we will stay united. We will all be together. There is no way that we can be separated, ever. Either you love me or hate me, you are still connected to me. If you think about me, you are connected to me. Likewise, I’m connected to you, so the connection is always there, that’s the truth of life. Let us focus on the positive, invest in the positivity, don’t worry about negative thoughts, words, actions. Focus on positivity and invest in positivity. Enhance positive thoughts, words and actions.

Also, invest in awarenss. When I say “awareness” please understand you are original, you are authentic. When you are authentic and you decide to express authenticity without diluting it, there might be enemies, not everybody will accept your positive nature, your ability to be positive and authentic. Not everybody will accept it. So be aware of it, but at the same time don’t be perturbed about it. You should always believe that you have every right to be authentic and be authentic. And be good and do good. Whatever expands your heart is good for you and that’s exactly what you should do. Whatever expands you and whatever expands the hearts of other people around you, that’s the right action. Whatever makes people happy, brighter and more loving, that’s exactly the action you should do.

Mohanji quote - Whatever expands you

Whatever you speak, speak with love and kindness so that the world will have a better vibration. It’s up to us. It’s up to all of us to increase the vibration of the Earth. Every individual is responsible. Every man, woman and child is responsible. All people are responsible. So it’s important that we enhance the vibration of the world as we go through our life. That’s the best contribution you can make in your lifetime. Ensure there is a lot of kindness flowing out of you, in your own way, in your own capacity, to the world outside. If you concentrate on that, 2018 will be a very fulfilling year for you. 2017 has already happened, we cannot do much about it, so don’t worry about the past. Whatever happened in the past, it’s alright. It’s finished. Please do not put your mind on something which is already completed, done.

Now concentrate on what is yet to be and make the best use of 2018. Our family is growing, many more people are reaching us, more and more people are connecting, so each one of you is more responsible to make sure that other people are happy. Everybody is happy, everybody is contented, everybody is welcomed and loved. Let it flow, let it spread. Let there be more positive vibrations in the world and keep blessing everybody. Keep conducting meditations and activities which will help people to understand themselves and also to understand the world better. A place made out of love will always stay. The energy stays. So love should be your medium of communication against all odds.

Mohanji quote - Ensure there is a lot of kindness

I wish you all success. Please remember obstacles and obstructions are just your tests. You must score the goal, that’s your aim, that’s why you are in the field. If you are in the field, your job is to score a goal. And please understand that you cannot get a ground without anybody opposing you. There has to be two teams, the positive and the negative. The negative’s job is to make sure the positive does not score a goal and the positive’s job is to ensure that they score a goal. So please understand that this will be the way life is. Don’t expect an open ground without obstructions so you can keep on scoring goals. Then there’s no game. So please understand this is the way it works and don’t be perturbed about it. Focus on yourself, have confidence, chant, make yourself more powerful, stronger, practise better, and then you go and score the goal.

I wish you all success and I’m with you. I’m with you always, I love you from my heart and you know that very well, I’m always with you and I’ll always remain with you. Let us walk together in 2018 and beyond.

Love you

M

Transcribed by Biljana Vozarevic

Mohanji and a Swami in Arunachala.jpeg

​Memories of Manu (Story of Atmananda)

When I look back to my time with Atmananda, I can never boast that I really understood him. Initially, he seemed to be a bundle of contradictions, absurdities, and inconsistencies. But, when I started accepting it all as part of his character and stature, he started to make sense to me.

Zamisljeni MohanjiPrimarily, he displayed no insecurities. I started seeing his uncanny authenticity, uncompromising conviction, and inconceivable profundity when I started accepting him as he was. Acceptance without conditions made a drastic difference in my thinking process. He told me to focus on myself instead of focusing on him. And it was intriguing. He used to say “Form might lead to delusions. The same applies to expectations”. I was beginning to be aware of that. So, I stuck with his recommendations or teachings rather than his form or personality. Nevertheless, his actions and activities were unignorably influencing my character. Detachment from all things around me was settling in without my being aware of it. And fears, as well as insecurities rapidly vanished too. Looking back, in a way, I was possibly imitating him, quite unconsciously. In this context, I would like to quote a few of his teachings. Perhaps they could be considered as silent initiations too.

While walking through a forest area, when we cautioned him of the possible attack of wild animals, He said “If this ‘dead’ body becomes useful for the survival of a fellow being, why not? Consider it a better use of the body than using it for indiscriminate consumption of the wealth of mother (earth). (Atmananda always considered his body as “dead” and spirit as life. And he used to say “My life is not the body. It is now in the body but not affected by the body or even the existence of it. Being unconditionally available is the initiation in the path of liberation. Conviction is the dhuni (fire).”

His explanation of Purushartha, the essence of human existence, was truly profound.

“Purushartha (the essence of existence) or the tapestry (DNA) of human existence consists of Dharma, Artha, Kama, and Moksha,” explained Atmananda. “Dharma is the basis of the existence of everything. Dharma is righteousness. The right method of existence provides guidance even to the mind-oriented people. Being natural. Being with nature. Truthful. Rightful. Righteous. Righteous living means living in tune with nature; the nature within and outside, without disturbing and destroying anything in and around us. Universe operates on Dharma. Birth is dharma. Life is dharma. Death is also dharma. Every breath is dharma. Earth, Wind, Water, Fire, Space and Ether function based on Dharma. Dharma is inevitable. Dharma operates the whole universe. When we are in tune with dharma, without resistance, we have a complete, unfluctuating life. Dharma protects the dharmic.


Artha is material. Regular karmic existence needs material assistance. Materials include food, clothing, and shelter. Artha is important for existence. Artha also demands maturity. Immature handling, possession, and control of Artha lead to imbalance and eventual destruction of oneself and the wealth. Artha belongs to nature. Nature alone can own nature. No being within nature can own it forever.

Kama is desire. The desire for food, shelter, clothing and every aspect of human existence, which is created by destiny is kama. Kama is the fire that keeps life going. Even desire for liberation is kama in a sense.

Moksha is dissolution which is beyond enlightenment. Moksha is total liberation.

Dharma, Artha, and Kama exists in all parts of this world, amongst human and non-human beings. Moksha – the thought and sincere conviction for liberation from the karmic cycle of birth and death – exists only in Bharat. This makes this land sacred.” Atmananda used to say “Do not take this land that you walk on for granted. Great sages walked this land.” (Masters like Agastya, Vishwamitra, Dattatreya, Vyasa, Valmiki, Sapta Rishis, Nava Naths, Lord Rama, Hanuman, Krishna, Parashurama, Adi Shankaracharya, Buddha, Patanjali, Varahamihira, Bharata, Charaka, Narada, and so many others). “Respect this soil. No other soil in the whole world has mothered so many great masters, traditions, and religions.”

Some more events from the life of Atmananda.

Once sitting by the side of the fire, I saw Master staring at the fire intensely as if speaking to it. Suddenly, he uttered as if to someone unseen to our eyes, staring into the fire. “I have no more incarnations.” We heard that. We waited for further words. For a long time, he kept staring at the fire. Then we heard him speak again “My next incarnation would be sophisticated. I would hide behind garbs of that time. I would confuse the world with my attire. I would shake minds with my character, style, nature, methods and habits.” He spoke no further. When we asked about his next incarnation at a convenient time, he did not bother to answer. We gathered that he was talking to someone in the fire or through the fire, or that perhaps he was participating in a discussion with masters. An Avadhoota always remains unfathomable.

I heard this story from a follower of the master. One day, after lunch, we were sitting under a tree. Guruji and others were seated under other trees nearby. This follower told me about an incident in Atmananda’s life: “Our Guruji used to meditate in the neighbouring forest alone for many months, if not years. He would abstain from food and water. As you know, this forest has many wild animals – tigers, snakes, elephants, and so on. One day, our Guruji was sitting in meditation at the mouth of a cave about 900 feet above this forest, on the other side. A tigress came to the cave. Guruji was unaware. Perhaps she wanted to enter the cave. Guruji was blocking it. The tigress produced a scary spine-chilling cry. It was very near the face of Guruji. He opened his eyes and saw the tigress. He looked straight into her eyes and they understood each other. He moved away, and the tigress entered the cave. In the same cave, there was a huge serpent as well. It never bothered the presence of Guruji. Neither did Guruji bother the serpent’s presence. Now that the tigress also occupied the cave, the chance for a conflict was inevitable. Yet, perhaps due to the presence of Guruji, the two beings existed peacefully in the cave.

Soon enough, the tigress who was pregnant, delivered four cubs. The cave family thus started growing. While Guruji is meditating, the cubs would climb over him and play in his lap. The mother tigress would go out to fetch some food for herself and also refresh herself. So did the serpent. Guruji was almost always fasting or ate some leaves or fruit which naturally came to his doorstep. Thus, Guruji stayed with this strange family of beings for a few months and then went on with his wandering.” This gave me a clear picture about the unity of consciousness which Guruji used to mention. All beings are one in consciousness and there is no separation. All other species know it except humans. Guruji always respected all lives on earth and always ensured that his existence never interrupted or disturbed any other lives.

Atmananda often spoke to himself or beings that we cannot see. He used to stare at something and speak as if it’s a human being. Once I saw him speaking to a “fallen dry wood!” What I heard was “I have to come back. So, it is better to leave quickly to come back. Is it painful? Oh, no. Pain is only in the association. I am the consciousness of an atom and this mountain. No shell can give me pain. Pain is with the shell. I am not my shell. I must give myself. I must stop being I. I have kept this body and all that is connected to this body away from the marketplace. Now, I must keep all of them in the marketplace. I will give my next body for the lions (worldly people) to feed on. If that is the command. I will.”

I often wondered, who is this “I” this perfect Avadhoota is talking about? Later on, I understood, he is referring to a state of his, perhaps his human dimension that we get to see or a certain aspect of his state but never the personality that we usually refer to as I.

“I am the consciousness that existed in the atom. Then I expanded to become a cell. Then I became a fish. I came in everything that walks, crawls, swims and flies. I am also the medium (elements) they thrive on. I am the non-attachment that exists inside every shell. I have taken millions of lives. I felt and experienced the pain of separation from each mind from its body identification, each time. I felt the pleasure of liberation after each body too. When each bird comes to liberate a worm, when each tiger comes to liberate an incarnation, each time when death comes to liberate an existence, I shed the garb of illusion and become complete consciousness. I am the consciousness of the eater and the eaten, yet I have no birth or death. Birth and death happen as ripples within my consciousness. I remain complete and immortal always.”

brahmarishimohanji-Mohanji and the Guru Mandala

One day he said “There is no use in following me. You are wasting your time with me. Even I do not know where I am going. And I know I have nowhere to go. You are not like me. You have places to go to. So, do not waste your time with this mad wanderer.” Even though we were perplexed by these words, we understood the meaning after some time. Initially, we thought that our Guru is asking us to leave. But, his later actions revealed that he wants us to think and be aware. Places to go to are our desires of material gratification. He has no desires. He has no place to go to as well as every “place” is him. We still have desires. This means, if we choose to follow him, let it be without other desires and with only one aim, liberation. A liberated being becomes everything visible and invisible. For my master, He is the final home. His journeys, if at all, are all inside the home of his consciousness. There is no outer journey through the senses and mind for him. This was a strong reminder for all of us.

Mohanji walking, from the backAt one point in time, Atmananda slowed down and started showing signs of detachment from everyone, as if preparing to leave his body. He did not leave the shade of a banyan a tree for a week, and was staring at the sky day and night without eating, drinking or sleeping. All of us decided that he will leave his body soon and that was a tough thought for us. Our anxiety grew day by day. One day, Atmananda spoke: “You fools! Why are you so anxious, upset and crying? You are upset because I may leave this “dead” body? I am ashamed that you have understood nothing by walking with me all these years. Death is inevitable for anybody and not the soul. The Soul never dies. I never die because I am never born. All that is born will die. This is the truth and there is no tragedy in it.

When my work is over with this body, I will leave it. I am not the body and nobody can hold me. You will also leave your respective bodies just like I will someday. Crying over a dead body is the silliest and stupidest thing one can ever do. When I die, do not keep my body in a pit (samadhi). Burn it and give the ash to the rivers that bathed it and nurtured it all these years. There should be no visible trace of Atmananda. I will come back again in another body to fulfill every wish of everyone who connects with me. When I come back, I will come back only for the sake of Dharma and will have no boundaries or barriers. It will have nothing to do with this body that people call Atmananda.” Atmananda made this very clear and started his wandering pattern again. We understood that he wanted to give us an important lesson in life.

M in whiteWe rarely saw any emotion in him. He always existed in his own world. One day, as we were walking past a small-town market, we heard one local leader giving a speech attended by an audience of about a hundred people. Guruji did not wait to hear the speech. He abruptly walked past them without paying any attention. Acharya Shankar, who was with us for a few months, was from that town. When we sat down after a short while, Shankar told Atmananda: “Guruji, the man whom we saw speaking to a crowd is a popular leader of my place. He is doing many things for the poor. But, he is intolerant about saints and always speaks of saints and monks as lazy, useless people. He even tries to prevent temples from giving them food or shelter. On one side, he is serving the poor, while on the other side, he is abusing the harmless monks.”

Atmananda abruptly intervened, “He is serving himself and nobody else. All his moves are calculated for his advantage. When he pretends to serve the poor, he is looking for their support for his own popularity. He is keeping them poor that way. Monks have no value for him. He pretends to be secular, but when it comes to the defenseless monks who do not rally for him, they are useless for his personal agenda. Only a subtle heart will see the peace these monks are spreading on earth. By not needing anything, they are leaving a message of contentment in this world of greed and political supremacy.” Atmananda was emphatic and seemed a bit angry about what is happening in the hypocritical world around him.

Various quotes from my master Atmananda:

“Experiences die when the experiencer dissolves”

“I am not here to experience anything. I am here to prove that experience is nothing but a projection of the experiencer, just like the waking state reality is a projection of consciousness which has nothing to do with any of the three states”

“Desires maintain thoughts. Thoughts maintain mind. Liberation is a state of no thoughts and hence no mind, let alone desires”

“My existence is a reminder that you are unbound and hence you are freedom. You are free.”

“Just like fire uses materials to express itself, the Source uses matter (bodies) to express itself”

“As long as thoughts exist, you exist; Only if thoughts exist, you exist”

“Prejudices make the good look bad while love makes the bad look good. Our world is as we are and not what it is.”

Pic 16 - Mohanji and Thea, into the Light

“Acceptance is the first step towards liberation. Seed of liberation starts sprouting only from the nirvitarka samadhi state. Yet,states are not stable unless carefully nurtured”

“You are a complete incarnation like any other. You are not creating or uncreating anybody’s destiny. All are complete incarnations that came here for experiences and expressions. Their only bonding and binding factor would be emotions”

“Life is all flavors. Life must be taken in its totality. Nothing is absolutely right or absolutely wrong. Karma dwells on relative truth, experiences and expressions. Karma carves destiny from nothingness.”

“Understand you are a unique expression of the divine and you need to do nothing about it”

“Events are impermanent, and emotions are experiences for the mind. Consciousness has nothing to do with it”

“If you consider consciousness as spirit, it is beyond mind and emotions. Soul is beyond consciousness too.”

“You as consciousness are not the doer nor the experiencer. Unattached, you are witnessing both. And soul is witnessing the witness.

“What have I got to do with you? And what have you got to do with me? Minds made us. Truth will dissolve us.”

M from the back

“My only experience is that I do not exist”

“My love is absolute because I am love”

“Those who invoke and maintain emotions are enemies of liberation”

“Truth can only be found in silence”

“Connection between minds is the lowest possible connection. Awareness of unity in consciousness is one of the highest possible connections”

“Expectations maintain mind. Expectations distort truth”

“Every rejection, every denial has its positive side – Strength. If you swap your natural despair and dejection from these into your strength, you will become invincible in life”

“Friends who put prejudices into your mind should be considered as your enemies”

“Those who love you unconditionally will not judge you ever”

“Those who stay with you against all odds should never be abandoned”


“Doubts, like gossip, is deadly poison. Even a drop of it can kill faith and push the seeker backwards in evolution of awareness. Doubts reverse spiritual progress.”

“Compassion does not mean you accept negativity, pessimism and prejudices from the world around you. Compassion means their mind becomes free from it all because of their interaction with you”

“Do not be afraid of friends becoming enemies and enemies becoming friends. Both are bound by illusions of mind. Truth is that everyone is oneself.”

“Those who pretend, criticize, judge, scandalize and condemn others are usually hypocrites. They are either afraid to be authentic or are jealous of authentic people. They are even afraid or ignorant about their originality or the law of karma. Deficiency creates anger, jealousy and prejudices. Society is full of such hypocrites. They only see what they are programmed to see. Absolute truth is not accessible to them. They cling on to relative truth and form their opinions. Do not waste your time on them. They keep you prejudiced and bound with their ignorance of reality”

“No karmic being has the right to criticize, judge or condemn another. All are same in the law of karma”

“If you fear criticism, you will be a compromiser. You will not have growth and evolution. If you have no fears, you will have growth in awareness. Those with firm conviction on eternal truth will never consort hypocrisy. They will not fear enemies”

“Greed breeds crime”.

“Every bit of darkness is afraid of brightness. Even a tiny spark of light means death for darkness. Hence, darkness will try its best to avoid all kinds of light. Extreme conviction and focus are required to bring light to life and to keep it alive always.”

“Fire symbolizes heat and light. Fire symbolizes life”

M sun in the hair

I shall conclude this with a few one-word answers of Guruji.

1. What is the reason for poverty? “Inner Poverty”

2. What is the reason for ailments? “Suppression”

3. What hinders liberation? “Ignorance”

4. What causes sorrows? “Inner darkness”

5. What is success? “Contentment”

6. What is the highest human expression? “Compassion”

7. What is the sign of a true seeker? “Patience”

8. What is downfall in spiritual journey? “Desires”

9. What is being absolute? “No Mind”

10. What is the ultimate? “Nir Beeja – No Seed state”

Until some other time –

I bow down to my divine master and re-enter my silence.

M in peace

Disclaimer:

Atmananda is a fictional character created by Mohanji to explain the Tradition. Any resemblance to the living or dead is purely coincidental.

​Divine Designs of Life (Story of Atmananda)

“I cannot believe that I am so limited! I cannot feel I have a body. Bhagawan, (Lord) What is this?”, Manu asked Atmananda. Atmananda paid no attention to his words. There are many such exclamations from his followers that he is used to; and he knows the cause of such surprises – Mind. He was never impressed with anything that minds ever produced. Why should he? Mind is all that he saw around him. Walking, talking, sleeping and dreaming minds. Heavy minds laden with concepts, prejudices, fears, memories and desires. Nothing else.

Mohanji - za Atmananda blog
Manu had experienced a trance state by simply connecting his mind to the heart centre of the ever meditating Atmananda. Manu sat a few feet away and just concentrated on the heart centre of Atmananda. At that moment, a melting, dissolving feeling enveloped his mind as his heart centre merged with that of Atmananda. He has been doing that ever since he started following Atmananda. Finally, on that day, he saw, or rather felt, in his inner eye the fathomless, unlimited vast sky of Atmananda’s heart centre. The whole universe seemed to be resting there. That glimpse pushed him into a blissful trance state and he stayed like that for a few hours.

Atmananda never guided him into this state nor did he pay any attention to it. He knew that one can only feed minds. Consciousness needs no food. His very presence was his highest teaching. To the eligible ones, he delivered the unasked just by his presence. Eligibility was in inner emptiness, unshakeable faith, lack of doubts, surrender and clear purpose of liberation. On the tree of liberation, healthy leaves seeking the ultimate remained on the tree, while the leaves that are dry, confused, prejudiced and decayed with heavy emotions, kept falling off periodically. Every breeze, let alone storm, was a reason enough for those leaves to fall off. Whenever this happened, and someone commented or asked about it, Atmananda would reply calmly, “They are not ready for liberation. It is not their time yet.”

Sun had set. Atmananda stood up and started walking. He moved a few steps towards the path that led to the river bank. Obviously, his intention was to take a dip and meditate at the nearby temple. The local temple priest always gave him and his followers some food whenever this wandering monk came that way, even though they never asked or expected anything from anybody, anytime.

On the way, they met an old woman. She was limping and walking with the help of a stick. She was rheumatic and seemed to have a frozen leg. Atmananda would always ask “Have you eaten?” to every old and sick person he met on his way. He asked the same question to this lady. She said “No. It has been 2 days.” This place was away from the city and sparsely populated. Hence, it was not a favorite place for wandering monks and helpless old people. Atmananda turned to one of his followers called Ramakrishna and said “I gave you three fruits in the afternoon to keep. Do you still have them?” This was given to Atmananda by a fruit vendor as Dakshina. Ramakrishna said “Yes Gurudeva.” Atmananda said “Give it to her.”

Ramakrishna hesitated for a moment because that was the only food that this group had at that time. Atmananda repeated without any emotions, “Give it to her.” Ramakrishna did not think again. By that time, Atmananda had already started walking ahead. Ramakrishna rushed to hand over the fruits to the old woman and then catch pace with the usually fast and agile Atmananda. In fact, all of them were quite hungry and there was no assured food source at hand. Yet, while walking with Atmananda who never ever stayed at one place for more than three days, nothing was assured. This was a test for most disciples. Atmananda never cared who dropped off and who stayed. He continued wandering.

After bathing and performing the “Sandhya Vandan” (prayer/meditation ritual during sunrise and sunset), they walked to the village temple. Lord Krishna was the principle deity there, the sweet scent of basil (Tulsi) garlands that adorned the beautiful idol of Lord Krishna greeted them. The idol shone in the light of the ghee lamps.

Atmananda always had a clear reason for taking his followers to temples – purification. It was never for his sake. Purification has multiple aspects. First the senses, then the mind. Senses have no meaning or existence without the mind. Eyes capture the bright, shining, decorated positive glory of the idol, which is nothing but the representation of an ideal. Every idol in the Sanatana Dharma path is the representation of a particular ideal or dimension of our existence, such as action, will power, abundance, wealth, love, knowledge, peace, etc. Ears are awakened through mantras, bells, drums, conch and other sounds of the temple. Nose is awakened by the fragrance of basil leaves, flowers, incense sticks, camphor, and perfumes used on the idol. Skin is awakened by the application of sacred ash, turmeric paste, sandalwood or vermillion. Tongue is awakened by the sacred water, offered fruits or other offerings. Sound of conch which supposedly is as powerful as a thousand Om, powerful enough to ward off all negative elements and awaken the human nadis. Finally, the mind is awakened through all these senses as well as the vibrations of chants and songs, which detach the mind from the outside world and keep it steady in the present. Thus, the whole body is awakened. This helps inner and outer purification. Apart from that, the offering the devotees give at the temple signifies sacrifice and surrender. Humility is the most important aspect of human existence that brings forth grace in abundance.

M in white giving Shaktipat

Humility has four aspects. The feeling of insignificance in a positive way is one aspect. If one feels lower than the lowest, it’s a clear sign of established humility. This is also why people prostrate with full body at the feet of the idol or spiritual master. Total surrender, making oneself insignificant, so that ego is brought down to the lowest possible level. Man minus ego is equal to God. Second aspect is being tolerant, nurturing high level of acceptance, without judgement of oneself and the world around us. Acceptance of oneself and the world around keeps our mind steady and calm. Resistance, judgement, prejudices, hatred and anger towards everything is the opposite of this. In that case, mind remains turbulent. Third aspect is acceptance and respect of all beings, human and non-human. Respect them as you would like to be respected or more. Fourth is no expectation. Do not expect respect, acknowledgement or anything at all while giving forth our best. This is symbolized by offering variety of stuff to the temple or idol. Idol represents an ideal and each deity is representation of different dimensions of human existence or different ideals. All these put together becomes the experience called Humility. Humility ensures grace in life.

And of course, temples are meeting places for sharing and caring as well as nurturing and expressing our innate goodness and kindness. Rejuvenation, purification and nurturing goodness are the reasons why Atmananda took people to the temples. He never encouraged prayers of requests for material and even spiritual benefits from the deities. He used to say, “Increase your inner space – you will carry more grace.” Whenever people asked Atmananda “What can we do to get the state of God?”, Atmananda always answered “By doing you only get more karma. Only though non-doing or detached existence from actions and the results of action, while in action, you can realize God. You cannot “get” God. God can only be realized. God is always there. Godhood has to be earned through emptiness. In silence, you become aware of it. Actions and expressions often take that opportunity away.

There were hardly any devotees in the temple that day. It was a village temple and away from the city crowd. An old woman and her teenage granddaughter walked around the temple in circumambulation chanting “Aum Namo Bhagawate Vaasudevaaya,” the sacred mantra of Lord Vishnu. When he saw Atmananda and his entourage, the priest had came out of the temple and handed out some flowers, sandal paste and two bananas which were offered to Lord Krishna earlier by some devotee. The priest said “Don’t go. Let me complete the rituals and close the temple. I would like to share some more food with you.” He went into the temple to complete the evening poojas (rituals). Atmananda gave one banana to the old woman with the girl, who came near him to touch his feet. He did not allow her to touch his feet. Instead, he touched the ground near her feet. She howled, “Oh no Swamiji, your touching my feet will bring me a big sin!” Atmananda smiled and said, “If I am the cause of your sin, I shall take it away too. Bless this son, mother. I am touching my mother’s feet.” This episode ended there because Atmananda is a man of few words and almost no emotions. He lived the life of a perfect Avadhoota.

Mohanji blessing, sight

Atmananda and his group of 9 at that time sat outside the temple expecting the priest to close the temple and join them. The priest lived about 100 feet from the temple. He usually carried the rice and fruits that devotees offered to Lord to his house after every daily ritual. With that his family of five people survived. They never complained of poverty nor worried about their sorrows. He came to Atmananda, brought some broad leaves from a tree which served as disposable plates, spread them on a flat stone seat near a banyan tree, and with his hand, started serving rice. He served almost half of what he had got on the leaves. The rest he kept for his family. From a smaller vessel, using a spoon created out of a leaf folded in a particular manner and pinned together with a twig of a plant, he poured some ghee on the rice. Atmananda was sitting quiet watching this. The priest looked at Atmananda apologetically and said, “This is all I have. Please accept my humble offering and bless me.” Atmananda held the hand of the priest in gratitude, which still had remnants of the rice on it, and said “Great embodiment of unconditional love, your generations will not know what is hunger.” The priest’s eyes welled up. Atmananda said, “You have hungry mouths waiting for this food. You gave half of it to us. They may sleep hungry because the food you have is insufficient for five people. I will not allow that.” He took a plantain leaf and covered the vessel that the priest held in his hands, tapped the vessel thrice and told the priest “Do not open this leaf until it is time to serve. There will be sufficient food for all.” By then the priest was already overwhelmed. He tried to prostrate at Atmananda’s feet. He did not permit that. He held him and said, “You are taking good care of the beloved Lord Krishna without any demands and expectations. You are a pure and selfless man. You never care about you and your family while sharing food with any stranger who wanders this way. Your family is also good and pious. Only goodness and blessings will come to you. You may be materially poor. But you have a rich heart. You will never be short of anything from this moment. Your next seven generations will experience the goodness of your actions.” He sent the priest off with tears of gratitude in his eyes.

He closed his eyes, chanted some mantra and touched the food left on the leaf plate by the priest. Nobody knows how that little food became sufficient food. Everybody ate rice with ghee to their hearts full and nobody realized the original quantity was not even sufficient for one person, let alone nine. Same thing happened at the house of the priest. Everybody ate sufficient food and still there was more. {And the vessel that Atmananda touched stayed with that family for five generations. Their house never had any dearth of food.} All assembled were amazed how the most unassuming Atmananda performed an act of miracle. While they witnessed it, they did not think of it as a miracle because of their terrible hunger. Later, it hit them and all of them realized that they really did not know Atmananda, nor how he operates at any time.

They left the temple premises the same evening and settled in a school veranda about an hour away from the temple. Atmananda always walked at least an hour after the evening meal even though there was no dearth of walking ever because they were walking almost the whole day, every single day. Before the break of dawn, Atmananda set out to take bath and do the morning rituals. This school was away from the river bank. So, they took bath by drawing water from the well. Atmananda did his rituals a few yards away from the well, sitting on a stone. When the neighboring village women started to come towards the well to draw water, Atmananda got up and started to walk away. His team of nine followed him.

It was still dark. They walked for an hour in dark. There was a root of a huge tree on the walk way which was not so clearly visible. Atmananda who was walking ahead of everybody, tripped on it, fell and had a bad injury on his right leg. He could not get up or walk. His followers lifted him up and carried him to the clear space, to a flat stone on which various travelers used to rest when they were tired. This stone was near to the village path way. He was bleeding. They did not know what to do. Atmananda asked them to get some leaves of a very common wild plant. They brought the leaves. Atmananda crushed those leaves and fixed the paste thus made on his injury. There was no cloth to tie it. He removed his own towel, which was his only cloth except his loin cloth, and tied it over the crushed leaves.

Because of the excruciating pain Atmananda could not walk. His followers offered to carry him, which he refused. He sat on that stone from morning till evening. Atmananda and his followers had no food. They managed to get some water from a neighboring well. There were no houses in the neighborhood and the path had only a few travelers. If they walk a few miles backwards, they will reach the school and the village where they spent the previous night. Yet, Atmananda was stubborn. He never cared about hunger, but his followers were not so. Some of them expected Atmananda to do some magic and get them some food as he did before. Nothing happened. One by one the followers started protesting among themselves, standing away from Atmananda, started talking into receptive and sympathetic ears. They said “If Gurudev could materialize food for a priest, why can’t he do that again for us?” One of them said “My sight is blurred with hunger. I cannot even see a thing.” Another mused “Is the guru testing us?” The third said “Are you sure he materialized food the other day or did we imagine it?” One remarked “No way. He did. We all ate.” Another said “I am pretty much sure he has no such powers. It is probably the temple, Lord Krishna and the priest that made it possible. If he had such powers, he would not allow us to starve. Why can’t he do that now?” “If he has power to know our minds, he should be knowing that we are hungry. Why is he not doing anything about it?” Another person said “Is he sleeping, pretending sleep to fool us, or actually meditating? One of them said “He never asked us to follow him. He will never ask us to leave also. It is entirely up to us to stay or to leave.” Another one replied “What is his plan? Is he going to sit on this rock until he is healed which may take weeks?”  That was a scary thought for everyone.

It was almost midnight. None of them had eaten anything. There was a village if they travel backwards. There was no clue about what lied in the way ahead. Some decided to go back towards the school. They took a few steps but the forest pathway was dark and scary. They feared snakes and nocturnal animals. They stopped and returned. Atmananda seemed to be sleeping unaware of all this. Manu and Ramakrishna sat on both sides of him focusing on their Guru seated in their heart center and they did not feel any hunger. The other seven people were in total confusion. Some of them tried to lie down and sleep, but the bizarre sounds of the jungle, piercing hunger and the fear of prowling animals were seriously affecting their sleep. Finally, it was a few hours to sunrise. Atmananda woke up. He asked Manu for two sticks. He used them as crutches and walked forward. His hungry, confused, sleep-deprived followers reluctantly followed him. Atmananda was not wearing anything except a loin cloth because his towel became his bandage, covering his newly acquired wound.

Luckily, after they walked forward about an hour, they found a water well, made by the king for the comfort of the travelers. They drew water, washed themselves, drank from it, some washed their clothes while taking bath, while Atmananda cleared his wound, applied more leaves and tied them with the same cloth again. There was no food in the neighborhood. It was a long starvation. After doing his morning rituals, Atmananda started walking. As always, he never told anyone where he was going and how long he will walk. He just started walking. Seven of his followers had only one thought in their minds – FOOD. Sunrise brought out colorful birds from their nests, flowers bloomed, and the forest pathway looked pretty and heavenly with various flowers and dew drops decorating them with sun rays. Only Manu and Ramakrishna could enjoy this. The others were looking for fruits, leaves, roots or even seeds that they could eat and quell their hunger. Atmananda walked on with his crutches. He never asked or cared how his followers felt. He never asked anyone to follow him in the first place. And he was an Avadhoota, very introverted and a perfect loner too.

Finally, it was noon time. All the seven people were tired. By that time, they reached a stream coming down through the forest and flowing towards the river. They washed their tired feet and faces and drank a lot of water. Atmananda sat under a tree and closed his eyes. Manu and Ramakrishna sat next to him and connected to his heart centre and dissolved themselves into it. The seven confused followers moved away from them and started taking decisions. The leader of the group and perhaps the hungriest of them all named Amara said “I am leaving. I cannot see any end to this journey. I cannot sit like Manu with empty stomach. And I am convinced that Atmananda has no divine powers. He is an ordinary wandering monk.” Another one said “I agree. He has no spiritual powers. At the temple, I am sure, it was Lord Krishna who performed that seeming miracle.” Third one said “I too cannot exist this way. He is not concerned about us. He is too much into himself. And, after all, what exactly did we learn from him so far?” Fourth said “This is true. Why are we walking with him? It is always uncertainty and no training. He is teaching nothing. And he is confusing me to the level of frustration of all kinds. I am leaving.” Another one said “I am leaving too. This uncertainty is not worth it.” Amara said “Friends, he is an ordinary man. He fell and got himself injured. He cannot heal himself. He cannot feed himself or others. He is so helpless. Can’t you see? He is an ordinary man. We are deluded.”

 

 

M walking, from the back

Finally, they all agreed that Atmananda is just an ordinary wandering monk with no extraordinary powers or knowledge and prepared themselves to leave him. They decided to go to him and bid good bye. When they approached him, they saw the three of them sitting with their eyes closed in meditation. They did not have the patience to wait until they opened their eyes. They just walked away. About half an hour after they left Atmananda, they saw a tree with some delicious fruits. They ate as much as they could and packed a few for the rest of their journey. After eating and resting for a while, Amara said “See, Atmananda does not even have luck on his side. Only after we left him, we found food. We starved the whole day and even night, looking at him and hoping that he will move. We made the right decision. We are free now and luck has favored us in the form of food.” Everyone agreed. Atmananda, Manu and Ramakrishna came back to terrestrial reality soon after the group left them. Atmananda tried to get up. Manu held his hand and helped him. Atmananda got his sticks and started walking. Ramakrishna said “Gurudeva, I shall fetch the others. They might be sleeping somewhere around. Please kindly wait for a while.” Without looking, Atmananda said without any emotion or concern, “They have left us. Let us move on.”

After walking for hardly 10 minutes, they found a small farmer residence. When they came close to it, the farmer’s wife, a young lady, came out of the house, invited them and asked them to be seated. She offered them water and freshly cooked food. They all ate well. Atmananda blessed her “Anna daata Sukhi Bhava” (May the one who served food always be happy and be in abundance). She became happy. She told Atmananda that she is pregnant and sought his blessings for a good and healthy child who will make their lineage proud. Atmananda blessed her “Tathasthu” (So be it). Even though she requested them to stay back and have the evening meal and stay the night over accepting their limited facilities, Atmananda politely refused that offer and decided to walk on. The farmer’s wife also offered some plant medicine for his wound. He politely refused that also. They started walking. The lady was at the gate with hands in position of deep reverence for Atmananda.

Before the road turned, Manu looked back to say a final goodbye to the woman. When he looked back to see if the lady was still there, he did not see the lady, the house or cattle. There was no trace of any habitats. It was only thick forest which blocked even the rays of sun. He could only see the village path behind him, as far as his eyes could go. As usual, Atmananda never looked back. He kept walking. And both Ramakrishna and Manu noticed that Atmananda was walking without sticks and there was no trace of an injury on his leg! They wondered the reason for this divine drama and concluded that it was to shake the tree and shed the dry leaves, dry of spiritual conviction. Atmananda always said “Conviction is essential when one chooses to walk the path of liberation. Perhaps conviction is more essential than faith. Passion and fearlessness are just by-products of it.

One leaf from the life of Atmananda ends… here.

Disclaimer:

Atmananda is a fictional character created by Mohanji to explain the Tradition. Any resemblance to the living or dead is purely coincidental.

The Sun and the Man

Watch the routine of The Sun and you will understand what is ‘Dharma’

The Sun does Supreme Service. Sun nourishes the entire solar system, aids life, sustains life, recycles life and also reproduces life. The Sun does all of this very objectively; purely on dharmic basis without any attachments, expectations or claims.

Sun’s main aspect is heat. Heat creates, sustains and dissolves. Amongst all elements, fire swallows everything. It digests and delivers ash which does not retain any visible characteristic of any material that it swallowed. The same fire cooks our food and digests the food in our stomach. It is the same heat which gives energy to move and carry out functions, be it plants, animals or humans. Heat aids every transformation, every change in every plane.

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The Sun is an epitome of lack of tamas (inertia). Sun never takes a holiday and does its duty perfectly well. It is self-inspired and never deviates from its path or duty, even if lowly clouds block its purpose at times. Earth also never takes leave! She receives the sun’s energy gracefully. There is no procrastination. In spiritual path, the biggest road block is tamas.

Sun is the same even if it is obscured by clouds which are of lower stature. Sun is never affected by clouds. It stays as it is. Clouds come and go. Clouds change their form and intensity. But, clouds cannot stay for long, just like our emotions. When the clouds depart, the Sun is always in the background unchanged! Our soul also should not get disturbed by emotions like the Sun does not get affected by clouds. Sun witnesses clouds. When clouds depart, we see the bright Sun again. Beyond the clouds, there is sunshine. Beyond the emotions, there is the truth of existence. Sun’s brightness can never be diminished by clouds. Why do we think that the brightness of our soul will be faded by our fleeting emotions? When all emotions depart, only love remains, which is our basic nature. Sun is an embodiment of pure dharmic love.

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Sun represents the Sanatana Dharma (the eternal ground rules of existence). The sun exhibits perfect witness-hood. It is The Supreme Knowledge. Brightness, Light, Fire, Heat, Seasons, Movement, LIFE; Sun signifies everything that life consists of. Sun does not ask for identity. Sun does not want recognition. Sun also does not wait for your thanks! Sun exhibits its dharma. It shines irrespective of anything. how we perceive that shine depends on us!

Sun represents the cycle of existence. Sun creates, nourishes, sustains, dissolves or recycles – even water, which can stop fire, is recycled into vapor, rain and then back to rivers by the Sun. It creates change in seasons cyclically. It moves the world and the lives on the world.

Sun is the abode of many beings. These beings are made of the same material of our soul, which cannot be drenched, or burnt by any element including fire. Their body itself is fire; or, fire transcends through them, or, they transcend through fire. No fire can harm them. They aid wisdom, not only to mankind, but to other beings in other planes too.

These are just a few aspects of the SUN. So, follow the Sun and you will know Dharma in its completeness. Meditate on the SUN. Chant Aditya Hridayam. It will eradicate Tamas and make you shine forth. Rise and Shine!

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Human beings are inseparably connected to the Sun. In fact, almost all the species (animals, birds, plants, etc) are. Our systems wake up at sunrise and slow down to a minimal level at sunset. Body processes everything quicker and more efficiently between sunrise and sunset. After sunset, because the shutters are down, whatever we consume goes to the storage boxes. It can be properly processed only when the sun rises the next day. Our ancestors used to wake up in the morning before sunrise, purify themselves through ablutions, cleansing processes and chanting and used to be prepared to attain optimal efficiency during the day during sunrise and sunset.

They never used to eat anything after sunset They never used to eat anything before sunrise. This used to save them from various disorders including indigestion to obesity. Today, we have nocturnal beings. We not only consume junk food but also we consume them at the wrong times. This is totally against our system. Those who used to wake up early used to sleep early too. Thus, they followed the sun. Those who follow the sun can never be ill. They will have no dementia or problems related to the mind also. Connecting to Sun keeps us refreshed and healthy. If you look at all the beings of other species, either they slow down, rest or get back to their nests at sunset and they sleep the whole night over. Before sunrise, they are awake and are efficiently at work through the day. None of the beings in nature have fatigue of any kind because they follow the sun. Sleeping late and waking up late is totally against our system.

Follow the Sun. It ensures a good life.

 

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A Humble New Year Message for 2017

My beloved embodiments of pure love

Mohanji - Weekend Program - Macedonia - 29 May 2016 (387)

         We talk again after a full year. A year of happiness and sorrows as usual! As someone told me, “The year was nothing special”. Well, making every moment special and worthwhile is within us. It is the way we are that makes our life special or ordinary. We often keep too many expectations on ourselves and from life. We weigh ourselves down. We punish ourselves. And when finally health gives way, we lament at our losses. A balanced life needs discipline. A satisfied life needs balance of mind. A complete life needs selflessness as the basic operating platform. This is within us.

Do not live this life as a favour to anybody. You are doing nothing else on earth except experiencing something. It could be good or bad. It could be expected or unexpected. But, all beings on earth are just experiencing and, in a way, expressing oneself so that it flavours one’s own experience. Our expressions add flavours to the life around us. We are doing nothing to anybody anyway. There is nobody apart from us. All are our own expressions. All situations are our own creations. Sit down at a quiet place. Silence your mind by concentrating on your inhalation and exhalation. When mind is thus silenced, ask yourself what you are and what you think you are. As yourself what you are up to and how much control over life you have. Spend some time with yourself like this every day. Measure your understanding with your own inner silence. Start accepting yourselves with all your weaknesses and strengths. There is not one person in this world that does not have any weaknesses. Accept them. Accept your weaknesses more than your strengths. When you finally accept your weaknesses, they will start becoming weaker and you will start becoming stronger. When you suppress them, liked caged tigers, they will wait to be unleashed to pounce on its prey which is you. Who are you, what are you, why are you – are the most relevant questions that can lead you to liberation. Be liberated from your own mind through constant awareness and contemplation.

Ask yourself why you need a guru. What do you lack? Ask yourself why you are listening or following Mohanji? Mohanji is an ordinary man just like you. What is so special in him? Remove all your superimpositions on this man called Mohanji and decide if you should be with Mohanji. Do not be with any Guru because of infatuation, fear of any kind, illusions, thinking that they are someone else from the past or something else, enlightened, better than yourself, filled with powers and strength and without weaknesses, miracles or misconceptions, expectations, karmic conquests or clearance, or even a shoulder to cry on. If you look at a Guru as anything else apart from a reflection of yourself or as a mirror in which you can see your own reflection, I am afraid you are in the wrong track. Remove yourself from all such bindings. Be free from within. I would not want anyone to follow me out of fear, compulsion, herd instinct, illusion, misconception, or thinking I am someone else’s incarnation. Take your time. Think well. Should you be with Mohanji from 2017 onward or not? Take firm decision. If you can accept me with all my imperfections, just like I have accepted you with all your imperfections, we can travel this life together. If not, we can part with love in our hearts for each other. Do not be afraid to leave Mohanji and be free, if you feel any binding here. Your freedom is most important as is your free will. Nobody can live peacefully together if their imperfections are also accepted along with their perfections. Every person who ever walked on earth had been imperfect in the eyes of the society, one way or the other; especially if he has made a name for himself. Society likes to highlight imperfections of people and discard their goodness. “The good that men does are often interred with their bones. The bad survives them” – Shakespeare. So, be brave to leave if you do not like than suffer a forced companionship. Again, also look within what makes you bitter. All things outside are only triggers for what is already within. Be Aware.

I would like to use this space to make myself very clear. I cannot promise you a bed of roses. I cannot promise any comfort zones. I cannot promise you healing or cures. I cannot predict your future or for that matter mine. Do not think that I have supernatural powers or direct access to God Almighty better than you. I am just as you are. Nothing special. If you love me without expectations, you are welcome to be with me. If you are here to test or taste, or here with bundles of expectations, I am afraid you will be disappointed very soon. Do not blame me then. I have warned you. I have all the strengths, weaknesses that you have. I am more ordinary than the ordinary.

This is a fresh year. A good time to start anything fresh and new! So, if you would like to leave me, leave me now. If you decide to stay after taking time and thinking well, take one resolution; stay with me till the end of life. Otherwise, I may not be able to give you whatever I have and you will be disappointed because of the same. Do not change your mind too often. Change it now for good, if you have to, so that it does not inconvenience anybody.

Just like you incarnated on earth for a set of experiences, I have done the same. What I am today is part of that plan. I can never say that I consciously chose this way of life or even this name or costume. If some people like my expressions, it is because my expressions suit their agenda on earth. In that context, I have no feeling, let alone bad feeling towards those who have chosen to leave me. When they were with me, they shared me, my time and whatever I am and I shared their space, time and whatever they have been. Only gratitude wells in my heart for all the experiences time has given me through various situations and people.

I use this space and your attention to thank you for every experience, company and comfort that you have provided me in the years past. I am grateful. Truly Grateful. If you will continue to be with me, I shall remain grateful. That is all I can say. I cannot promise you anything else apart from my love from the bottom of my heart. How you receive it is up to you and I presume would be as per your capacity.

2016 was a turbulent year for me. Some people, whom I loved deeply, parted from me. I understand and respect their reasons and choices. As a human being, it does hurt when those who you love leave you. Then again, life is all about meetings and partings. So, we wish them well and move on with our life. Some people who were close to my heart left the world as well. Baba Ganeshananda Giri and Vasudevan Swami have been my pillars and support. I cannot even begin to fathom how much value and power they added to my existence.

Avadhoota Nadananda, a powerhouse, pillar of strength, a father, mother, friend, brother, Guru, God and everything else, gracefully received me under his umbrella, protected me from the storms of life, gave me all he has in terms of his spiritual bank balance and allowed me to walk free. There are no words to express my feelings for him. A true master, as innocent as a small child, a spiritual titan, a remarkable guru and a humble human, he has touched hundreds of lives. He connected me with the Guru Mandala when he made me to offer a dakshina to the great master from Guru Mandala, opposite the Shiva temple at Shirdi in June 2016. Guru Mandala officially adopted me in 2016. Guru Mandala also conferred the title of Brahmarishi on me, through Avadhoota Nadananda. 2016 was an overwhelming year for me. I am truly grateful. Once again, I can only prostrate at the feet of the great masters of Guru Mandala `who adopted me, an ordinary man, despite all my flaws and weaknesses. I can only be grateful to the supreme Mahatapa Babaji who Himself asked Avadhoota Nandananda to look after me. Gratefulness moves my heart.

Once again, thanks to each and every one of you who walked with me through time, without expectations and conditions. Thank you for your love and care. Thank you for your companionship. Thank you for your company during our pilgrimages. We are again going to Kailash in 2017 July and Macchu Pichu in October. We shall meet in Croatia, Serbia or London for our retreats. We shall meet at Sedona Yoga Festival, USA in March. We shall meet somewhere. We shall definitely stay in touch. To those who are disappointed at my not answering via Facebook, let me confirm to you, I have listened to your heart always. If you really want to reach me, come via info@mohanji.org and I shall revert back.

I would like to thank the teams of Gurulight, Speaking Tree, Awakening Times and various news papers and media that covered our programs at various locations. Speaking Tree’s guest editorial was a great honour and I appreciate the love and respect showered on me by the Times of India team. Thanks to Ahimsa Vegan and Madhuban restaurants for supporting our programs with good food.

I would also like to thank the trustees and teams of Sreepaada Sree Vallabha Sansthan, Baba Ganeshananda Giri’s Dattatreya Shiva Sai Trust, Ashraya trust Kurnool, Manav Seva Samithi and other groups and trusts who honoured us, respected us and associated with us in the years past. Sincere thanks to Skanda Vale and Yoga Ville team for their true love and companionship. Special thanks to Himalayan School team, Mohanji Youth Club team, Mai-Tri Healing team, Consciousness Kriya team, Conscious Walking team, Kailas team, Retreat team, so on and so forth. Heartfelt thanks to Mohanji Foundation India, USA, South Africa, Macedonia, Serbia, ACT Foundations, Ammucare, as well as ambassadors, activities or centres in USA, Canada, UK, Serbia, Macedonia, Bosnia, Croatia, Romania, Russia, Germany, South Africa, Mauritius, India, Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand, and all their team members. All of you have really helped our mission to gain a good momentum despite all odds. Thank You.

My sincere thanks to the M management team who made the processes and made me more available in the world. Thank you for envisaging, orchestrating, streamlining and optimising my time and availability to the world. Thanks to all the volunteers who supported and helped to reach my expressions far and wide into the deep corners of this world. Your presence and support really made my life easier. Thanks to Mamu for efficiently managing my office and optimising it efficiently.

Special thanks to Amma for the translation of Power of Purity into Telugu, Dr. P. K. Namboothiri for Malayalam translation. Thanks to Sunil, Sujatha, Sunitha and Shirdi Sai temple Palakkad for the book Sai Mahima, translation of my writings on Sai Baba into Malayalam translated by Dr.P.K.Namboothiri. Thanks to Taiji for Sahasranaama and Ashtothari. Thanks to Jyothi Bahl for the rendition.

I wish you a great and fulfilling year. May happiness fill you at every moment and may your life be simple and purposeful.

In Gratitude

Yours

Mohanji