Saturday, August 24, 2013
Light and Sound on the Path, August 2013 Sant Mat Newsletter
Light and Sound on the Path, August 2013 -- A Digest of Spiritual Quotes and Sant Mat Satsang Discourses
This E-Newsletter explores the poetry, prose, spiritual discourses, books, scriptures, letters, prayers, ahimsa ethics, podcasts, videos, philosophy, cosmology, and history of the Masters from a traditional Indian perspective, and might also include quotes from various world religions in harmony with the Way of the Saints, the Path of the Masters and Mystics.
Note: To enjoy the contents, including the photos, if you're viewing this via email, always click: "Display Images", or "Show Images".
Jesus was not Christian. Guru Nanak was not Sikh. Muhammad was not Muslim. These labels get created later on. The strange thing is, great souls came to this world to remove these kinds of distinctions to form one humanity, yet human beings continue to be divided because of customs and traditions. 'Be Good -- Do Good -- Be One'.
'I know a thousand Rumis the world needs to hear, to be soothed by the Voice of the Soul that speaks through them all. Hafiz, Shams, Sarmad, Kabir, Mira Bai, Sahajo Bai, Rabia, Tukaram, Hazrat Sultan Bahu, Baba Farid, Nanak, Tulsi Sahib, Surdas, Dariya Sahib, Dharam Das, Namdev, Ravidas, Paltu -- countless are lovers of the Beloved.' (Agochar)
"There are millions of nether regions and skies above skies;
Man has wandered endlessly in His search:
The Vedas also say the same.
The Muslim books speak of eighteen thousand universes,
but it is the same Power that sustains them all:
If it could be accounted for, an account of it would have been recorded.
All attempts at description are in vain;
O Nanak, admit His greatness;
He alone knows Himself."
-- Guru Nanak, Jap Ji (Morning Prayer)
'The difference between conventional religion and the way of the mystics? Not content with the idea of putting off the spiritual life till some future age at the end of time or in another life, mystics seek to experience God now.' (Agochar)
"Now that you have gained access to this human form, go some way to serve your spiritual cause and life's mission." (Soami Ji Maharaj, Sar Bachan Radhasoami Poetry, Book One)
"Through meditation, doors of deeper knowledge and inspiration may be opened." (Shoghi Effendi)
"No mission is of greater importance to a person than the awareness of his own consciousness, the profound significance and purpose of his existence on earth and to find out the path for ultimate bliss, eternal happiness and cheerfulness i.e. the quest for truth." (quote from the Shabd Pratap Ashram website)
(Photo: Swami Santsevi Ji Maharaj)
"Keep your heart clear and transparent
And you will never be bound.
A single disturbed thought, though,
Creates ten thousand distractions.
Let myriad things captivate you
And you’ll go further and further astray."
The Need For An Authentic Living Master For the Spiritual Journey, by Don Howard;
Excerpts from: the Sar Bachan Prose (Swami Ji Maharaj and Huzur Maharaj) -- M.G. Gupta's English Translation;
the Shurangama Sutra (Leng Yen Ching), Scripture of Esoteric Buddhism; Kirpal Singh, Sawan Singh, Kabir, Rumi,
Guru Nanak; Mahant Jagdish Das Shastri, Shri Hajur 1008 Ardhanam Saheb, Sant Dariya Sahib of Bihar,
Sant Tulsi Sahib of Hathras, Professor Mark Juergensmeyer on the Sant Tradition of India;
a link to a blog about a "Hidden Guru" of Sant Mat by the name of Sant Girdhari Sahib;
Brief Introduction to Swami Achyutanand Baba; Shoghi Effendi, Ryokan,
The Sectarians (On Not Following a 'Kal-istic' Sectarian Approach to Spiritual Paths);
a link to a Vegan Jain article; Vegetarian Passages from the Sikh Gurus/Adi Granth,
from Jesus/Yeshua, and from Lord Mahavira of Jainism.
Sant Mat Links -- Online Resources
* Sant Mat Satsang Podcasts -- Spiritual Awakening Radio: Online Satsangs providing words of light and love for the spiritual journey -- NEW: The Yoga of SOUND — Transcendental Hearing; The Musically Accompanied Mystic Poetry and Teachings of Sant Dadu Dayal of Rajasthan; Sant Namdev; Sant Dariya Sahib; Tulsi Sahib: Radhasoami; The Five-Part Kabir Series; The Reality and Not the Illusion of Having A Guru; The Five Precepts: the Ethical Ahimsa Foundation of the Masters; and, An Introduction: Developing Your Own Meditation Practice — Exploring the Light and Sound Within -- To Listen Or Download These Free MP3's GO TO:
* Sant Mat Library -- Online Books -- Recommended Reading, New Books Always Being Added:
* Daily Spiritual Quotes/Quote of the Day/Social Networking Join Us @ Facebook:
* Sant Mat Radhasoami Blog/Archive -- You can access this, and previous satsang newsletters going back many years:
"The teachings of Tulsi Sahib are remarkably similar to those of Shiv Dayal [Swami Ji Maharaj]. They are couched in the context of the struggle against Kal, time or mortality, the negative power. The major vehicle available for the avoidance of this power is a positive one of even greater force: the words (sruti) of the Satguru. This sruti (or surat or surati) seems to be not a sound framed by ordinary words, but a remarkable sound which is discovered within the soul of each person. Tulsi Sahib admonishes the seeker to find that sound, fix on it, and follow its path as a devotee might follow the sound of Krishna's flute. The regions into which the soul enters as it makes its transit through the "tenth door", or the third eye, are described in glorious detail...... The point of all this is to lend credence to Tulsi Sahib's account of the soul's ascent to the highest of the high regions, the fourth part of the realm of Satlok: Anami."
-- Mark Juergensmeyer, "The Sants -- Studies In A Devotional Tradition Of India", published by Motilal Banarsidass
"For a long time the spirit of this faqir (i.e. Soamiji Maharaj Himself) sauntered and stayed there [Trikuti] and then under instructions from the Teachers and Guides [Murshids/Masters], moved ahead." (Sar Bachan Poetry, Book One, Bachan 21, from verse 7 -- Hidayatnama, M.G. Gupta, The Quintessential Discourse Radhasoami)
Sant Mat and Radhasoami History: The Hidden Guru -- The Case for Sant Girdhari Sahib -- GO TO:
Serving, Helping Others During This Life: "The advantage of being in the human mode of existence lies in giving and serving only, i.e. helping others as much as possible. Because, possibly you will not get this body [human form] again. This time you have been given this body, and so do not hesitate; serve others and that is all." (Guru Kabir, Saakhi Granth of Kabir, "1008 Kabir Vani")
Vegan/Vegetarian -- Non-Violence (Ahimsa): One of the best animal rights documentary films available, 'Earthlings':
Health, Well-being and Non-violence: "My Visit to a Jain Dairy Farm" is an article that has helped many vegetarians make the transition to a cruelty-free vegan diet:
"One should not injure, subjugate, enslave, torture or kill any living beings including animals, living organism, and sentient beings. This doctrine of Non-Violence (Ahimsa Dharma) is immaculate, immutable and eternal." (Sant Mahavira of Jainism, Acharanga Sutra, Ch. 4)
"Now beware in yourselves that your hearts do not become heavy with the eating of flesh and with the intoxication of wine and with the anxiety of the world, and that day come up upon you suddenly; for as a snare it will come upon all who dwell on the surface of the earth." (Jesus, Gospel of Luke 21: 34, Syriac-Aramaic New Testament)
Guru Nanak abstained from animal food and enjoined against cruelty to animals: "Having prohibited his disciples to drink wine and eat pork, he (Nanak) himself abstained from eating flesh and ordered not to hurt any living being." (Mohsin Fani, DABISTAN-E-MAZAHIB)
"The heart where kindness dwells, has mindfulness of God. That heart is full of fragrance of flowers." (Sant Dariya Sahib of Bihar)
Vegetarian Diet, the Sikh Gurus and Scriptures, A Collection of Passages:
Kabir Says, "The Moon Shines In My Body" -- Happy Purnima
"The moon shines in my body, but my blind eyes cannot see it:
The moon is within me, and so is the sun.
The unstruck drum of Eternity is sounded within me; but my deaf ears cannot hear it.
"So long as man clamors for the I and the Mine, his works are as naught:
When all love of the I and the Mine is dead, then the work of the Lord is done.
For work has no other aim than the getting of knowledge:
When that comes, then work is put away.
"The flower blooms for the fruit: when the fruit comes, the flower withers.
The musk is in the deer, but it seeks it not within itself: it wanders in quest of grass." (Guru Kabir, Songs of Kabir)
It is said that Guru Kabir appeared on the full moon day in 1398 AD. His birthday (Kabir Jayanti) is celebrated during one such purnima each year.
According to the Hindu calendar the full moon is called purnima. Purnima days and nights in India are known for their spiritual significance. In Hinduism pujas (forms of worship) are performed in temples on the day of Purnima, also important festivals might be commemorated by Hindus and Buddhists on purnima days. Some in Sant Mat (the Path of the Masters) hold special satsang events or spiritual retreats, providing some extra time to devote to simran and meditation practice.
Purnima Message from the Acharya of the Dharam Das Kabir Panth, Kabir Bagh, is below:
HAPPY SHRAWAN PURNIMA 20th, AUGUST 2013
My best wishes to all on the occasion of Shrawan Purnima. Let us all recall today Dharmdas Saheb’s sermon for mankind --
Sawan Jindagee Thore Din Ki Gumaan Mat Karna.
Kya Balak Kya Jawan Ek Din Sabhi ko Marna.
Jaan Tan Dhoke ki Tati, Ur Gaye Pran Pawan Nahi Tan Mein Mile Maati Mein Maati.
Human life's journey is momentary. Dharmadas Saheb says not to feel pride or arrogance for this momentary phase. Child, young or old, everyone has to go, none has permanency. It's a matter of time, each one of us are ready, progressing towards the moment of departure, so be humble, do good deeds and spread love and help the needy if you have to spare. Spend your life in bliss and contentment at the lotus feet of the Satguru.
I feel that each one of us are waiting for our turn, this period can be spent in prayer, love and bliss. Perform your daily chores and routine in bliss and contentment, life will become simple and uncomplicated.
Sadguru Kabir Saheb’s revealing message for life --
Maali Aawat dekh kar, kaliyan kare pukar,
Phoole phoole chun liye, kal Hamari baar
(Buds call out with the approaching of the Gardener. Today He picked up the bloomed, tomorrow will be our turn.)
Definitely my turn is tomorrow, but today is with me. Righteous application of this time has significance. The full moon night is bathed with moonlight; similarly our life shall bathe in the light of devotion and revelation of the Satguru. This is a journey to do justice to one’s life. A determined sight of goal simplifies everything. A humble and uncomplicated human being is the true seeker and devotee, his sight and company fills us with bliss.
Isi Darshan Ki Balihari, Guruji, Tumhare Darshan ki Balihari
Tumhare Darash se paap Katat Hai, Awagawan Niwari Guruji,
Tumhare Darshan ki Balihari’
(Guriji, I am offering myself for your Darshan, Darshan that erases bad deeds and will break the cycle of rebirth.
To be in presence of Saheb on the auspicious occasion of poonam is a blissful experience.)
Panth Shri Hajur 1008 Ardhanam Saheb
Sadguru Kabir Prakatyadham Lahartara,
Varanasi, U.P. INDIA
The Master-Power Comes into the "Matrix" of Illusion to Liberate Souls
Be empty of worrying.
Think of who created thought!
Why do you stay in prison
When the door is so wide open?
Man Trapped in a Well Arguing with the Person Above Holding the Rope
"Saints do not wish to satisfy Their audiences by empty words. They offer to take the inquirer to the other end, and thus give him first-hand knowledge. One beauty of it is that, at that end, these questions do not arise. So, if the curious questioner would exercise a little patience and faith, most of his questions would be answered automatically as his experiences increase.
"Suppose a man finds himself at the bottom of a deep well where he is very lonely and uncomfortable. Another man happens to pass that well. He carries a long rope. Finding this man in the well, he lets down his rope and offers to pull the man up, if only he will catch onto the end of the rope. But our man in the well enters into argument with the man above, and demands to know just how he came to fall into that well, and what is the guarantee that he may not fall into the well again, if he is pulled up. The utmost that the man with the rope can say is that he will take him out of the well and then he can study the situation for himself. But if the man in the well does not take advantage of this opportunity, it only means that his time has not yet come to escape from his imprisonment." (Huzur Baba Sawan Singh)
"'The ocean of birth and death' is people's thoughts. Random thoughts come from nowhere in an instant, occurring and passing away, impossible to stop altogether. The recurring of a thought is 'birth,' the passing away of a thought is 'death.' In the space of a single day, we are born and die thousands of times, so transmigration is right in front of us -- no need to wait until we die to experience it." (Chen Yingning, commentary on a Taoist text)
"The individual soul (jiva), bound by illusion (maya), remains in the cycle of death and birth. This is the cause of one's suffering. In order to escape from this cycle of death and rebirth we must experience realization of the Supreme Being." (Maharshi Mehi)
"The mind is your servant, like fire it is a good servant but a bad master, you see. I won't let you go unless you progress." (Kirpal Singh)
"World Honored One, as I (followed and) made offerings to the Tathagata Avalokitevara, He taught me to use my illusory hearing and sublimate it to realize the Diamond (Vajra) Samadhi which gave me the same power of mercy of all Buddhas and enabled me to transform myself into thirty-two bodily forms for the purpose of visiting all countries in samsara (to convert and liberate living beings).
"World Honoured One, if there are Bodhisattvas who practise Samadhi to attain the transcendental, when there is a chance for them to realize absolute Wisdom, I will appear as a Buddha to teach them the Dharma to liberate them.
"If there are solitary students seeking (only) self-enlightenment, who practice the stillness of Nirvana, when there is a chance for them to realize it, I will appear as a teacher of self-enlightenment to teach them the Dharma to liberate them.
"If there are students of the Four Noble Truths who, after realizing the unreality of suffering and its accumulation, tread the Path leading to the extinction of passions, when there is a chance for them to achieve this, I will appear as a hearer (sravaka) to teach them the Dharma to liberate them........"
-- Surangama Sutra -- Shurangama Sutra (Leng Yen Ching), Scripture of Esoteric Buddhism
Kabir says: "Without the Guru no one obtains spiritual knowledge or achieves salvation. Without the Guru no one can see Truth or have his doubts removed."
Commentary by Mahant Jagdish Das Shastri: "Importance of the Guru is mentioned in this sakhi. To achieve the higher stages on the spiritual path, and to succeed in the world, one needs the guidance of the Guru all the time to overcome obstacles on the spiritual path."
-- "Spiritual Gems of Kabir" (Sakhis of Guru Kabir with Commentary), translated by Mahant Jagdish Das Shastri
"So long as a person does not perform karmas [actions] in accordance with the guidance of the Saints, his mind cannot become cleansed or uncontaminated. And so long as he does not contemplate on Satguru and Shabd, his attention (chitt) shall not become unflinching (nishchal). When he has attained to these two grades (i.e. purification of mind and perfect concentration on Satguru and Shabd) then alone he will become entitled to receive (true) jnan (knowledge [gnosis, direct experience]). As this pure knowledge dawns, all screens (veiling reality) will be lifted."
-- Studies in the Sar Bachan Prose, from Book Two, Sayings of Soami Ji Maharaj (the M.G. Gupta translation of Sar Bachan Prose: “The Quintessential Discourse Radhasoami, Sar Bachan Prose”, M.G. Publishers, Agra)
"This jagat (phenomenal world) is perishable (nashman) and all its causes and effects are also perishable; that the wise and shrewd man is he who having carefully examined the burden of its activities (karobar) and having discovered that this is a fantasy world (kalpit) and mythical (mithya), has fruitfully and gainfully employed this human body (and its related instruments and material) in the remembrance (simran) and contemplation (bhajan) of the Absolute Lord; that having benefited from things with which the Supreme Doer (the Absolute Lord) has equipped this human frame, he has restored his invaluable core (jauhar-i-be-bahaa, i.e. the quintessence of his being or tattva vastu which is the surat or jivatma) into its real, original abode—the Radhasoami Sphere whence it descended.........
"The path of the Sant Satguru goes straight to Radhasoami who is far above Brahman and Paar Brahman and beyond the range of Kaal and Maya. One who follows the surat shabd path and listens to the reverberation of the Sound “Radhasoami” will be redeemed from the debt of Kaal and Maya and obtain moksh (ibid., para 67). This, then, is the Radhasoami view of moksh, the key to which is called prem marg or millat-i-ishq. It is entirely different from all the yogas.
"According to Sant Mat, moksh requires the jiva to follow that spiritual technique by which the surat can reach its real abode—Radhasoami Dhaam. For this, he has to examine the essential nature of this phenomenal world and finding it imaginary, illusory and mythical (mithya) become convinced of its ephemerality and devote himself heart and soul to the remembrance of the Absolute Lord (Radhasoami).
"Engagement of the surat with the body and mind has given rise to carnal desires which, in turn, have gripped the surat in a tight bondage with body and senses and with innumerable sense objects. So tight are these bonds that it has become insurmountably difficult for her to get released. Then, there are inner bonds with desires and longings, yearnings and cravings pertaining to the sensory and motor organs, and interplay of tattvas and the gunas with which mind and its allies like intellect, attention and ego constantly play. Moksha, therefore, means the cutting asunder of the strings of bonds referred to above and getting released from them to get back to its fountain-spring, viz. the abode of Satt Naam and Radhasoami."
-- Studies in the Sar Bachan Prose, from Book One, by Huzur Maharaj summarizing the teachings of Sant Radhasoami Sahib (using the M.G. Gupta translation of Sar Bachan Prose: “The Quintessential Discourse Radhasoami, Sar Bachan Prose”, M.G. Publishers, Agra)
"The process by which the secret of how to realize God is taught is called deeksha or initiation. It is always rewarding to seek initiation from a Satguru or preceptor." (Swami Achyutanand Ji)
"Those practitioners who assiduously practice meditation will behold wonderful spectacles within." (Swami Achyutanand Baba)
-- Swami Achyutanand Ji Maharaj, the octogenarian (he is 86) disciple of Satguru Maharshi Mehi Paramhans ji Maharaj (photo above courtesy of Pravesh K. Singh)
Swami Achyutanand Ji even at this ripe age has dedicated his life to propagating the ideals of Sant Mat by widely traveling across the length and breadth of India, his mother country.
Swami Achyutanand Baba is one of the eldest living disciples and spiritual successors of Maharshi Mehi Paramhans, as well as an eminent scholar in the tradition of Sant Mat founded by Param Sant Tulsi Sahab of Hathras. Swami Ji has had the rare fortune of very prolonged close serving association of more than three decades with Maharshi Mehi, who appointed him as the founder editor of the spiritual monthly “Shanti Sandesh” (Message of Peace), published by Maharshi Mehi Ashram, Kuppaghat, Bhagalpur, Bihar, India.
He has a number of books to his credit like, Bindu -- Nada Dhyan, Santmate Ki Baten, Navadha Bhakti, Bandaun Guru Pad Kanj, Maharshi Mehi Ke Ashirwachan Aur Upadesh, Sukti Sudha Sagar, etc.... He also is the current editor of the quarterly Adhyatma Prakash ("Light of Spirituality"), published by Maharshi Santsevi Dhyan Yogashram, Agarpara, Kolkata, India.
Online Sant Mat Book: Yoga Of Inner Light and Sound, by Swami Achyutanand Baba:
The Sectarians (On Not Following a 'Kal-istic' Sectarian Approach to Spiritual Paths)
"Sectarianism" can be defined as an excessive attachment to a particular sect to the exclusion of everyone else, or the worship of one's sect as the exclusive source of all-truth on planet earth.
"For me Ram, Rahim, Karim, Kesho, Allah and God are all one..... Both Hindus and Muslims make their paths defective, and they lose their faith in seeing differences. Really, God is up and down and in all directions, here and everywhere. He is all pervading."
-- Kabir, "Kabir Bhajan Amritam, Devotional Bhajans of Satguru Kabir"
This poem of Sant Tulsi Sahib is written in denunciation of the sectarian or separatist approach of many spiritual/religious organizations:
"How can the sectarian ever know of the Path of the Masters and where it leads to? They have put the load of pilgrimages, rituals and external observances on themselves. Indeed, they resort to all these practices, O Tulsi, to gratify their ego." ("Book of Shabdavali")
"The word is strange and indeed, appears to be insane.
They do not pay attention to anything I say.
They give up the manifest Satguru who is the Eternal Lord,
And they wander here and there in error.
They wander around worshipping places of pilgrimage and images,
And they worship rocks and stones and water.
They fall into the trap of sensual desires,
And they become entangled in the net of attachments.
That which brings happiness, they say is suffering, and which is
suffering they say is happiness,
And they do not know what is good or bad for their welfare.
They say that others are foolish, but they themselves are knowledgeable.
If I speak the truth they rush to beat me, but they believe in the lies.
Kabir says, how much can I keep on teaching? The world can be said
to be a very strange play."
-- Kabir, "Kabir Bhajan Amritam, Devotional Bhajans of Satguru Kabir"
"O Dear Friend! Make every effort to meet your dear Lord (chorus).
The worship of idols and baskets of flowers is like playing with dolls. Give up the thought of playing as children ought to play. The worship of deities and ghosts is the path leading to the cycle of rebirths. The Lord's dwelling is unfathomable and marvelous, and it's as if its decorated with flowers. Dedicate your body, mind and wealth, and with deep meditation, surrender yourself at the Lord's feet. Kabir says, 'Oh brother sadhu, listen to me! I give you the key to open the lock.'"
-- Kabir, "Kabir Bhajan Amritam, Devotional Bhajans of Satguru Kabir"
"Let me resolve to become truly human!
If I become truly human it will be pleasing to God.
Whether I am Buddhist, Jain, Muslim, Hindu or Christian,
We should embrace one another just as Brothers and Sisters.
We are like the different Stars Shining in the same sky.
How beautiful they look as they keep on twinkling.
We are all like the different flowers in the same garden.
How beautiful they look as they keep on blooming.
The one temple contains Lights of various kinds.
How beautiful they look as they produce their various Lights.
The Gita, Puran, Vedas, Guru Granth and Koran,
Are the scriptures of humankind,
which we should read with Love."
(From the book, Kabir Bhajan Amritam,
translated by Dr. J. Das,
Kabir Association of Canada)
"He who would walk the way of humility must renounce his earlier ways of living. He must give up the opinions he has formed, the standards to which he is accustomed. He must have a new outlook on life. The things the world would worship are to him of no value. His values are so different from those of other men. Rich food, fine houses, costly dresses, positions of power and authority, the applause of men, honours and titles, no longer attract him. He feels drawn to a life of simplicity. He is happy in living a hidden life in the hidden Lord. He is dead to the world; he is alive in God." (Kirpal Singh)
The Need For An Authentic Living Master For the Spiritual Journey, by Don Howard
"Spiritual seeking has the not-so-modest goal of revealing nothing less than the Divine, the Truth or Ultimate Reality. For far less modest goals than this we would not dare attempt their achievement without a qualified teacher. Our universities and the degrees they confer bear witness to this fact. For example, we would never attempt to acquire the skills of a professional airline pilot with mere reading, nor would we dare take instructions from someone who himself had never flown. Common sense requires that we approach subjects such as aviation or any number of other technical subjects with the help of skillful teachers and tried and true curricula. Why then would we assume that the highest and arguably the most difficult of all goals could be achieved without a Teacher or Guide?"
Rumi says, "Wherever there is pain (one who is in pain), there is the 'drug' (i.e. the Living Master himself, unsought) arrives; wherever there is penury, there the provisions go; wherever there is low land (humility), water rushes there; wherever there is difficulty, there the answer (to that difficulty) is revealed. Do not (therefore) look for water (the Guru); generate thirst (for water or the Guru) so that from top (the highest spiritual region) to bottom (the phenomenal world), water (of life) may rise in a tide. (And) so that they may hear the text: 'Their God quenched their thirst,' become thirsty (that is the earnest seeker, 'mumukshu' in Shankar's phrase) and, (of course) God knows best. If you want the water of (His) mercy, become lowly (humble) and then drink the 'wine' of (His) compassion and become ecstatic." -- Rumi, The Mathnawi, Volume Two, M.G. Gupta translation)