Author Topic: One Word from Bhagavan; Mountain Path, Advent 2012:  (Read 1515 times)

Subramanian.R

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One Word from Bhagavan; Mountain Path, Advent 2012:
« on: March 03, 2013, 06:45:12 PM »


In the annals of those who came to Sri Bhagavan there are many instances of a word, a phrase or sentence that utterly
transformed the life of listener. The instruction could have come direct from Sri Bhagavan or it may have been directed to
another person in the assembly. It may have been even a casual remark but non the less, the force of Sri Bhagavan's speech
had the impact of a depth charge that rocked the balance of the every day mind and set the person on an entirely new track.
There are documented cases of this radical summons, as for instance, that of a university biochemist who, in 1948, was prostrating
to Sri Bhagavan before taking leave, when he heard the command 'Iru' ---- 'Be!'.  As a rule, devotees took leave of Sri Bhagavan out
of respect and he did not usually indicate a preference as to whether someone came or went but would either smile or nod in
acknowledgement 

In this case, it was unusual. Sri Tinnai Swami as he was later known, "obeyed both colloquial (stay) and the literal (be) meaning of the
word 'Iru' uttered by Sri Bhagavan.

From that moment, he never left Tiruvannamalai, and he also remained fixed firmly in the eternal state of Self abidance,. (Michael James,'
Mountain Path, April 2004).

Such dramatic instances did happen though not always known.  More often than not a word from Sri Bhagavan would irrevocably change a person's life, direction and attitude. Sri Bhagavan's words are not to be treated lightly.  There is a depth in them that can
outright transform us, if we are receptive.

continued.....

Arunachala Siva.   
               

Subramanian.R

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Re: One Word from Bhagavan; Mountain Path, Advent 2012:
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2013, 02:25:02 PM »
continues....

before that, a correction, the article appeared in Jayanti, 2012 and not in Advent 2012:

How then at this distance in time from the historical Bhagavan, do we grasp His upadesa? Certainly we cannot expect that if,
after reading about the injunction to Tinnai Swami we hear the command 'Be!", it would  happen automatically to us. It depends
on our sincerity and willingness to change. It requires fertile ground.  Nothing  nourishing grows on barren land.  More often than
not when faced with a heart felt injunction to revolutionalize our lives we are good for high intentions and plans but quickly run
out of impetus. 

We need food to persevere;  our suffering is food;  our insights into the nature of our own thoughts, is food;  our deep, sustained
reflection on the word of the guru is food. This food is the fertile ground for the grace of the Guru. The guru's word is like a mantra
that embeds in our consciousness a relentless, sometimes soft, sometimes loud, admonition.  Sri Bhagavan used the analogy of gun-
powder, coal and wet straw to illustrate the level of preparedness in a seeker. The act of setting us alight occurs at a higher level. Yes,
we actually are already where we want to be, but it does not help if we are identified with avidya (ignorance).  The removal of avidya
is not an act where we go from ignorance to knowledge.  It has nothing to do with the cause and effect. It is a vertical shift in the moment out of our normal consciousness.  It feels as if we are lifted up out of our skin.  The previous apparently fixed procession of our
life is irrelevant.     

This metamorphosis is not ours to command. It is for us to be aware that we are commanded when we have purified our hearts
and minds. Not before. We are the template which is acted upon.  Learning about Sri Bhagavan's teaching requires patient attention.
If we are full of our own preconceptions we may not hear the underlying meaning, for the words then are hollow and will have no
lasting impact.  Words in themselves do not bring us alive, on the contrary, they may bewilder and we may, through our laziness or
ignorance deliberately misunderstood.  It is authoritative intent behind the words which is paramount. The teachings are meant to
shake and awaken us.  If we listen aright we catch fire and burn with a new intensity and range of active misunderstanding.  The
ultimate teaching is not an answer but a silent transformation.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.   

Subramanian.R

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Re: One Word from Bhagavan; Mountain Path, Advent 2012:
« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2013, 12:50:59 PM »

continues.....

There is a Moroccan Sufi story which illustrates our predicament.

"One day a woodcutter was asleep in the forest, when a long green serpent slithered up to him and slid into his open mouth
and down his throat. The woodcutter woke up as the snake was suffocating him. Panicking, he managed to stand up and flap
his arms about moaning as loudly as he could.

"As luck would have it, a horseman was riding by at that precise moment. He saw the woodcutter waving his arms in distress.
Having come from the neighboring land where snakes were plentiful, he realized immediately what had happened. Pulling out
his whip, he leapt from his steed and began to lash the poor wood cutter's stomach with all his strength.

"The woodcutter tried to protest, but half suffocated by the serpent, and wounded from the horseman's seemingly unprovoked
attack he could do nothing except fall back to his knees. Displeased at the discomfort of its hiding place, the snake reversed up
out of the woodcutter's throat and slithered  away.  When he saw that the woodcutter was out of danger, the horseman jumped
back on his mount and rode off without a word.  Hailing from a land where such attacks were frequent he didn't give he matter
a second thought.

"As he caught his breath, the woodcutter began to understand what had happened, that the horseman had attacked him in silence
because time was the essence, before the reptile had injected the venom into his bloodstream." (Shah, Tahir, In the Arabian Nights,
Doubleday, London, 2008).

continued.....

Arunachala Siva.         

Subramanian.R

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Re: One Word from Bhagavan; Mountain Path, Advent 2012:
« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2013, 10:23:27 AM »

continues.....

Ignorance is like that snake.  It creates fear and confounds us. Its reality is far more immediate and apparent than our
so called accurate description of events. Our explanations lack the sharp directness of the experience.  If we wish to truly
understand we should hold fast to the experience and not explain it away.  Then consider the guru's words and how lightly
we can treat them if we are unmindful.  In the holy traditions of all religions the sacred books are treated with great reverence.
This is not just out of respect but in order to remind us that the contents are not to be treated casually.  The implication is pay
attention.  Like a delectable taste we want to enjoy, we should roll the instructions round in our mind and let them mature.

Language implies there is someone communicating and that there is someone listening who are both on the same wavelength.
This has serious implications for there are many conflicting strands of thought competing in us for for dominance. Sri Bhagavan likens
pure contemplation to a fortress which is attacked by sallies of thoughts.  When we say 'I' it is not necessarily the same 'I' since,
like monkeys, mind jumps from one branch of thought to another.  Our identification blinds us.  How then do we communicate with
ourselves and touch truth?

By being still. By not allowing the static of thinking to interfere with silence of direct understanding. All our efforts in meditation
are meant to bring us to this crucial point, the bindu.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.   

Subramanian.R

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Re: One Word from Bhagavan; Mountain Path, Advent 2012:
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2013, 10:52:32 AM »

continues.....

Sri Bhagavan tells us that all that He has composed can be encapsulated in one letter. It may be a letter written in dead ink on a
page but in our heart it shines.  He questions whether there is anyone who can write it, that is, identify and know it as separate
from oneself.  ('One Letter':  All the letters in this book add up to a single, imperishable letter. This as written you have read.
This single letter shines for ever of its own accord within the heart. Who can ever hope to write it?  - Collected Works).

How can we be at one in our hearts with the innermost core of Sri Bhagavan's teaching?  How can we possibly resonate with that
silent hum when our minds are filled with noise of our rampant thoughts?

We know deep down that if we can stay attuned we will be effortlessly guided and moved in the right direction.  Unfortunately,
we cannot always remain in this state.  Our tendencies interfere and cause us to lose our hold. If we cannot remain in contact
with its wonderful ascendancy we resort to worlds to elucidate and explain how we can come into union again with its wholeness.
For this, grace acts quietly in the back of our minds reassuring us with the notion that there is an answer.  There is an unseen
power which subtly interweaves with us its persistent and invisible sway.  There is a single divine law  which makes sense of all
the chaos which surrounds us.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva. 

 

Subramanian.R

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Re: One Word from Bhagavan; Mountain Path, Advent 2012:
« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2013, 09:50:14 AM »

continues....

Sri Bhagavan related the story of Tattuvaraya, the great Tamizh advaitin whose Guru, Sorupananda, was to the outside world,
an unknown idle man.  Tattuvaraya composed a bharani praising his guru.  Pandits who read the composition protested such a
poetic form was normally reserved for those who killed more than a thousand elephants in battle.  Tattuvaraya requested them
to come with him and meet his guru, which they did. They were rapidly impressed with the sanctity surrounding Sorupananda and
it is said, 'Remained in beatific peace for a few days with out the least movement.'  Recovering their normal state of mind they
realized the greatness of Sorupananda, saying that he had 'excelled the warriors in that he could subdue the ego, which is much
more formidable task than slaying a thousand elephants.'  (Talks No 262.).

It is clear from the story told by Sri Bhagavan that though words may assist us, ultimately it is the silence of the guru alone which
can purify our mind. The purpose of all our reading and listening is to seek that silence which can slay the thousand rampaging
elements of our mind.

We should understand clearly that silence is not a fixed mental state. It is not an object to be captured and manipulated according
to our desire for peace. It does not have any perceptible characteristics. It is elusive and free of limitation. We can no more hold it
than grasp the wind that caresses our faces.  Bhagavan said that "A person may refrain from speech in order to avoid the obstacles
of the outer world, but he should not consider that to be an end in itself. True Silence is really endless speech; there is no such thing
as attaining it because it is always present.  All you have to do is to remove the worldly cobwebs that enshroud it; there is no
question of attaining it."  (Letters, Suri Nagamma, 3rd Sept. 1947.)

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.   

Subramanian.R

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Re: One Word from Bhagavan; Mountain Path, Advent 2012:
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2013, 01:44:25 PM »

continues.....

We read the words of the guru and wait and listen for a clue that will transform us.  When we hear the sound of birds it is for no
other reason than to enjoy their melodious sound. There may be sense in the pitch and trill known to another bird, but for us
it is simply pure delight. Similarly, when we hear the words of the guru, they touch a center in us that resonates in affirmation.
Yes, yes, yes.  If we hear the message correctly it should not be drowned with explanations but lived in quiet joy. It is a song we
discover and slowly replicate until it resounds with irrepressible urgency in the corridors of our mind. It suffuses our dreams and shapes
our decisions in daily life. We begin to sing the guru's song.

Who then hope to write it?  We are that song!

concluded.

Arunachala Siva.