Bloom O My Mind in the Company of Sages

25th June, 2011: Maharaj Ji arrived back at the ashram on 21st June after sharing in the happiness and sorrows of devotees spread through five states of India. This blessed tour lasted near three weeks. Since we last met on this space at Lucknow, Maharaj Ji travelled through to Ramganj Mandi, followed by Dahod, Kochi, Delhi and Saharanpur. Where ever Maharaj Ji went, festivity enveloped the atmosphere; the devotees put their daily duties at bay to spend as much time as possible in his company. It was a roller-coaster ride and hence also the reason for the huge delay in this and the last update. Anyhow, we shall try to make for that: you should look out for the latest photos from this tour that will be updated shortly (in “Program Photos” under “News Room”) and some spell-binding recordings of Maharaj Ji discoursing at various places (also to be updated shortly in the “Audio” section under “Media Room”). Snapshots from Maharaj Ji’s Kripa Yatra (May-June, 2011)

Meanwhile, sweltering heat has welcomed the devotees back to the ashram, and yet, where the heart and the mind get to drink the sublime nectar of Maharaj Ji’s words, oozing strength into the being, their all discomforts become sweet and holy enthusiasm comes knocking at the door. For example, yesterday evening, Maharaj Ji enthused the disciples with the following strong, resounding, clear message:

“Success in sadhana comes when the mind thinks of nothing but sadhana. This means that even if someone has roughly rebuked you, it doesn’t bothers you, your mind continues to think only of sadhana and does not gets entangled in the thorns of tit for tat or the like. But this definitely does not mean that you only think only of yourself and your sadhana and pay no attention to the needs of people around you. The main thing is to make the mind antarmukh (inwardly-turned and tuned). Therefore, the first place in sadhana is accorded to service. A sadhak should have an expansive heart. The heart that does not melts at seeing the other in pain, that does not reach out to satisfy others’ needs cannot be the heart of a sadhak. Does your heart go out to others who might have not yet eaten and do you worry to feed them; to those who might not be able to do something, say wash their clothes, and does the thought ‘that “I’”should wash their clothes for them’ strikes you?    Mr.___ comes to the ashram often and we all know that because of his disability it must be difficult for him to wash his clothes. How many of us have the thought, “Well, let us take his clothes and wash them for him”.

We often remember, we were at Kila Raipur then and used to eat in the pangati (sitting in a line on the floor, along with others to have food, as per the Indian custom). Once they appointed some new people to serve the food. Now these new sevaks had a queer way to serve the food. They would go on running along the pangati, not bending down to ask anyone if they needed something. Their logic was that whosoever would need something would ask them for it from them while they would be passing. But then what was their role in the process? One could have equally well kept the food on the table and all would have served themselves, as is usually done at social ceremonies these days. To serve food to others (in the pangati) is a huge skill which requires a great heart that feels happy by giving. The one who is serving water, for example, should also have his eyes on whether the one eating requires chappati, daal or any other thing. And about those who eat daily in the pangati, the one serving should know about their appetite and tastes. He/She should know how much quantity  someone would eat, what does he like eating etc. etc., without the person having to ask for anything. But all this comes only when one really does a particular action out of genuine interest in serving others and enjoys doing it. It is not a matter of following orders of one’s seniors, service is to happen from within. Only then does it happen correctly and is truly termed as ‘seva’.

You come to our room and try to serve in a zillion ways, if we ask for even a glass of water, you run quickly to get that; now your zeal to serve thus should be equal in other places as well. Anyone can do something when asked to, but seva implies to serve without the other having to ask for it. About seva, the scriptures say that “the path of seva is so deep and subtle that the level that a true sevak can obtain is difficult to obtain even for yogis”. We are saying this to all present here. Now it is up to each one of us to imbibe it as much as one can.”

These aren't bramble bushes that I lift, it is the thorns of my mind that I pull out and offer to thee.