Your SlideShare is downloading. ×
Self development-by-meditation
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5

Thanks for flagging this SlideShare!

Oops! An error has occurred.

Saving this for later? Get the SlideShare app to save on your phone or tablet. Read anywhere, anytime – even offline.
Text the download link to your phone
Standard text messaging rates apply

Self development-by-meditation


Published on

1 Like
  • Be the first to comment

No Downloads
Total Views
On Slideshare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

Report content
Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

No notes for slide


  • 1. INTRODUCTION To comprehend and to practice meditation is obligatory for every man inmodern-day world. Meditation is the wonderful method of realizing dharma in humanlife. In fact, it will be more apt to say that meditation is an aspect of religionconnected with breathing. Meditation is a form of religion. In modern times we findreligion and its different aspects being hotly debated and discussed, but there has beenno discussion, no discourse on the form of religion, on its spiritual aspect. Severalso-called religious people have turned religion into a subject of controversy andpolemic. They seem to have forgotten that religion is not a subject for polemic orcontroversy, rather it is a subject of spiritual dialogue, spiritual purification, souldiscovery and spiritual karma. Meditation is spiritual or self-purification and self- discovery. Meditation helpssuch flowers blossom on earth as will give out spiritual fragrance. Therefore, Irequest, I exhort the entire world that it should get itself introduced with the fragranceof religion through the medium of meditation. Shri Shirish Muni and Shri Sailesh²the former an ascetic and the latter abelieving Jain²are deeply involved in trying to realize my dream in the field ofmeditation. Their right and proper efforts deserve my blessings. The responsibility ofgetting the original Hindi version of this book published was taken over by ShriVinod Sharma : I wish him spiritually all the best. Dr. Dharam Singh of PunjabiUniversity, Patiala, accepted our request to make time to render it into English: hewill ever be an object of my blessing for the labour he has put in to make this Englishtranslation possible as well as for what he has been doing to help various members ofthe Jain Sraman Sangh in the perusal of their academic studies. Our thanks are alsodue to Mr. Ravinder Jain and Purshottam Jain of Malerkotla and Dr. Rajesh Ranjanand Dr. Paryudumna Shah Singh of Punjabi University who helped in a variety ofways in the publication of this book. The series of meditation camps we have been holding is an exercise aimed at theuniversal weal, the welfare of all. At this auspicious hour I welcome all thosededicated young men and others to join and make a joint endeavour to bring about abeautiful, clean and healthy social set-up through the medium of meditation. SHIV MUNI
  • 2. CHAPTER I MEDITATION : WAY TO INNER-PURIFICATIONIntroduction Welcome to all the seekers of the path to meditation and discipline. The Hindiequivalent of the word ‘welcome’ is ‘swÈgat’. The word ‘swÈgat’ literally meanscoming (Ègat) to self (swai). Thus, one’s return to the self is called ‘swÈgat’. There are certain things and desires in this world which sprout quite easily. Forexample, one such thing is the food. It is quite easy for one’s mind to get attractedtowards food. Suppose you have just finished with your food and all of a sudden someeatable of your liking and choice comes to your sight. A thought flashes through themind²‘let me taste a little bit of it.’ It is thus easy for the mind to get attracted to food.And for this, one need not make a resolution that one will go for the food today. Onenever knows when the mind is tempted by the good food. You sit on an upper floorand the sweet smell of some dishes being prepared downstairs reaches your nostrils,mind in a flash reaches downstairs to find out what is being cooked. It is somewhatnatural. The second example is that of sleep. You enjoy a good 8-hour sleep at night. Stillif you find nothing to be done during the day, what happens then? The mind favourshaving some rest and finally some sleep. It is also quite easy for mind to go for restand sleep. You do not have to force your mind to have a sleep. Of course, sometimesmore than one attempts have to be made to wake you up. But while going for rest orsleep, no effort is needed; sleep comes of its own. The third such example comprises the different objects and entertainment of oursenses. Music sounds good to the ear, sweet smell is good to nose, beauty appeals tothe eye, taste tempts the tongue and touch soothes the skin. These are five differentobject of our five senses. Our mind is prone to go to any of these quite easily. If andwhen a melodious music reaches the ear, no conscious effort is required to make theear listen to it. The mind concentrates on it of its own. And, if there happens to be asweet smell, no effort is required to make the nose smell it: our mind reaches the placeof that smell in a flash. So, these are the three things to which our mind is attracted quite easily and of itsown. First is the food, the second sleep and rest, and the third our differentinclinations (say, for tasty food), entertainment (say, listening to music), and otherobjects appealing to mind. However, to get away from these, to think of returning tooneself, one will have to make efforts in this behalf: accomplishment of it is no doubta great achievement. There will be numerous people who might have thought ofmeditating, observe silence for a while, and attend the camp at least once or twice.There will only be very few among those who thought of this but then made a strongresolution to do that. Of course, this thought came to many people, but what was thethought actually? ‘O.K., shall do it sometime. There is still time. We shall do.’ They failed to take the final decision. They remained confused or in dilemma.Some people resolved that they would do it and then they did get their namesenrolled, but even amongst them there were quite a few who failed to put that
  • 3. resolution to practice-maybe something at home prevented them or maybe theirresolution was not strong enough and their mind wavered. In case of those who gotprevented because of some important or unavoidable work at home, it is somewhatunderstandable. The main thing is that mind wavered at one or the other stage. Thus,even after getting their names enrolled, even after taking the decision, they failed toput that resolution to practice. You are welcome for the reason that you are amongthose resolute ones who took the decision and then sticking to it reached here.Stages of Self-Purification Now we shall see as to what we have to do during these three days. How shallwe live during these three days? What is the importance of living here? What have weto do while being here? If we put into one word all those different activities, differentsorts of meditation and the different methods of working on our own selves during ourstay here for three days, the word obviously will be inner-purification orself-purification. We shall work on this purification during our stay in the camp forthree days. What is the meaning of inner- or self-purification? How can we explain it? Whenpeople generally listen to the word ‘inner- or self-purification’, they take it to bepurification of Ètman or soul. And, when they listen to the word ‘Ètman’, it seems tothem to be something different, something within the body yet different from it. Thisis not the primary meaning of the word. When the word came into usage for the firsttime around three thousand years ago, the word ‘Ètman’ meant ‘I’. That is why theword ‘Ètmaj’ was used to convey the meaning of ‘my son’ or ‘my daughter’. If Ètmanor soul was something different from body, then whose son or daughter he/she wouldbe? It would belong to the inner consciousness, and the body would have had norelation with it? Thus, son/daughter is related to your body and the Ètman also means‘I’. In this sense, inner-purification means ‘my purification’ or purification ofwhatever I am. First of all, what are you? What is your first identifica- tion? When you say ‘I’,then what is your first identification? How can one identify you? By name? There canbe several people by the same name. Then the first identification is your body.Suppose there are three persons by the same name and you want to call one of them,how will you do that? How will you identify one you want to call from the other twoby the same name? Obviously, by looking at their physical appearance, at their body.All three have the same name, but they have different bodily appearance. So what isthe first mark of identification? The body. So the body forms the first stage of the selfwe talk about.First Step : Purification of Body The first step in this direction is the purification of the body. This body of oursneeds be cleansed, purified. This first step is rather significant because we never giveserious attention to our body. And if we ever divert the attention, it happens onlywhen the body starts giving problems, i.e. when it becomes prone to disease anddecay. These teeth in our mouth seldom attract the serious attention they deserve: ofcourse, our attention goes to them but only when one of them gets painful. When atooth falls off or is pulled off, the tongue spontaneously reaches there time and againto assure itself-or warn us?-that a tooth is gone. Maybe, otherwise we might notbother to think as to how many teeth we have. We never divert our attention in this
  • 4. direction. Similarly, we never consciously think that we have two ears. Again, weremember and think of the ear only when it gets painful or becomes hard of hearing. Itis only after that that we think that there is something wrong with our ear. It isthereafter that we begin to attend to the ear. The same happens with our body as awhole. We never pay attention due to it. That is why our body falls prey to differentdiseases.What is a Disease? Disease implies ‘give attention to me’. Suppose there is a small toddler andnobody is paying any attention to it. What will it do? It will weep, wail and cry. Thenyou give it a little of your attention, ask it what was wrong with it and why it wasweeping. On your attending to it, it will calm down a bit. It will ask for nothing, itneeds nothing except your attention. Similarly, you did not pay attention to your body.Gradually with the passage of time one or the other disease takes roots. If you arefortunate enough that no disease took roots, some impurity or disorder takes place.The latter also implies lethargy. Today, if you are asked to sit straight for a while, youstart complaining of pain here or there. You cannot sit straight, but can easily sit in alittle bending posture. Sitting straight is quite difficult. For some people, walkingupstairs is problematic. In the Dayalji Ashram if you daily go upstairs, you realizehow much is its height. No doubt, you are not yet old people beyond 80 years of age,but any disorder can take roots in the body even when you are young enough of say30 or 40 years of age. In the case of some people, it is the head that has becomeproblematic, it is the waist in the case of other, and similarly some other part of thebody in the case of others. In fact, when I said the age of 30 or 40, perhaps it was toomuch. You will see as we go along with the yoga lessons, even people in theirtwenties will face difficulties. A little movement of the body, bending it and making it do various things seemsquite difficult to many. And it is not unnatural or unexpected because we never paidany attention to the body, never bothered to enquire about its condition. When wewere infants, we had a brand new heart, supple hands, bright and sharp eyes and abeautiful face. As we have grew up, did we ever look at ourselves to find out whathappened to all these parts, to the body as a whole. Whenever we showed any care orconcern for the body, it was only to cleanse it from without with water and soap. Wenever thought of cleansing it from within. In fact, we never knew how to do it. Thenhow will we do the inner cleansing, inner purification of the body here in this camp?Relationship of Body and Mind This body of yours must not be taken as mere body alone, rather quite intimatelyrelated to it is your mind. If there is restlessness of the body, mind cannot remain calmand concentrated. If there is tension and disorder in the body, mind cannot remainbalanced and in order. See for yourself: when your foot is in pain, can you possibly sitcalm and composed? Can you concentrate in prayer? Or can it concentrate insamÈyik? Obviously, no. It means, this body is not mere body alone, our mind isintimately connected with it. You may say for the sake of saying what is inside? It isjust like a house on rent. However, you are still in the body and you are so closelyconnected with it that whatever happens to the body immediately affects your totalbeing, including the mind. If a small thorn pierced into your foot, you remember thepain the whole day. It is a small thorn, but it shakes your entire six feet tall body. And,
  • 5. it happens because of a small thorn! Thus, we realize that the body has a deep effecton the human mind. This implies that the purity of body is of utmost importance. We have to work on our consciousness, on our mind, but for that it is imperativethat our body should be set right, cleansed and purified. Purity of body is the first step.And, for this purity of body we shall perform different yogic exercises.What is Yoga? The yoga exercises are hundreds of years old. They have not been made orintroduced by me or anyone else. These have been taken from ancient texts. We shalltry different postures (Èsnas) for cleansing the body. The stiffness of the body, thelethargy and all such evils will gradually be gone because the yogic postures are notmere exercises. They are not just another physical activity. There is a lot of differencebetween yogic postures and other physical exercises. Often people tend to confuse onewith the other. It is not that mere raising hands up and down, forward and backward isa yogic activity. Yoga is not mere physical exercise. The latter is only for the bodywhereas the former is for your consciousness. Of course, it will be the body which weshall be using, but the effect will not be limited to the body, rather will go to yourinner most self, to your conscious self. Some yogic Èsnas are connected with thefeeling of anger and the other with the wavering of mind and its sensuous and sensualinclinations. Therefore, when you perform some yoga Èsnas, this surely affects yourfeelings. Gradually these feelings and emotions come under control. This is the firststep towards the purification of body, purification of Ètman.Silence for Self-Purification What is your second identification? How do the people identify you? The firstsuch identification is the body which includes your appearance, mien and face. Whatis the next? Profession? No, profession cannot be the mark of identification. Yourvoice? What and how you speak is the second mark of your identification. When aphone call comes, the person on the other end may not give out his name, but from hisvoice we can identify the caller. That is why when a regular caller, a person wellknown to you makes a call, he just says hello and you respond by asking about hiswell being and continue the conversation without asking the caller’s identity. Thus,the second mark of your identification is your voice. And, therefore, the second steptowards self-purification is that of the voice or speech. This purification is also ofgreat significance because we have been making use of our speech more or lesscarelessly and recklessly, with the minor exception that we try to speak a littlerespectfully in the presence of elders. It is on rare occasions that we observe silencefor a while, but we have never given the due attention to our speech. Then, how can itbe purified? What sort of purification it will be? For this purpose, we shall make useof silence. We shall remain completely silent. Observance of silence here means that we will not speak through the expressionof words. We shall not ‘speak’ even through gestures or by eyes. Absolutely nogestures or words. Silence here implies as if you had cut off all relations with theoutside world. You should presume you have none in the world except yourself andthat you know nobody in the outside world. There are so many people here in thecamp, but each one of you must live and move about here as if he were alone. Youknow so many people here, but you have to be here as if you know nobody.Everybody is alien to you. If there is any problem with anybody here, it should not
  • 6. bother you. All your attention be fixed and concentrated on yourself alone. Let it notbe that a person comes and stands behind you, all eyes get turned to him to find outwho has come to stand there. The person did not come to stand there for your sake!There is no need to look back at him, but we are so habitual of it that we cannotcontrol ourselves. We are accustomed to look at what we need not. It is like the habitof listening to what we need not and what we are not supposed to listen. We are alsohabitual of speaking what we need not. Therefore, observance of silence here meansthat we shall make absolutely no use of words; we shall not utter even a single word.Absolute silence. You might have a problem, you might have a question to ask, might have aphysical or mental problem, or you might have forgotten to bring along something.You might just open your bag and find that you have forgotten to bring the soap orsome such thing. Do not try to borrow such a thing from anyone because it willamount to speaking. Both the person borrowing and the person lending will be takenas speaking to each other. For any sort of problem, a diary and pen will always beavailable here. You have just to enter therein your name and the item you require. Weshall manage the required item for you. You may have problem in comprehending aquestion, do not express your problem in words, but put that problem here in writingand we shall solve your problem. You may have some other problem, for example asevere headache. You must not ask anybody for help or advice. You should just enterhere your name and problem. Asking anybody else for anything whatsoever iscomplete taboo. You should presume that around you sit not humans but just ghosts.None of them has any acquaintance with you. All are aliens who have come fromforeign, unknown lands. You should live and move about here in this fashion.Whenever you have a difficulty or a problem, you will put that in writing here in thisdiary. In case it is something really urgent or emergent, you will inform me about it inwriting. But you will not talk at all among yourselves or with people from outside. Many people known to you will be visiting here-some to listen to the discourse,some to pay obeisance, but you will meet none of them. You must not meet anybodywhosoever from outside. You have come here and it is important for you that youkeep your belongings in a separate bag with you even if someone closely related toyou, maybe your wife or husband, son or daughter, might also be attending the campwith you. Even if you had brought your belonging together in one bag, you shouldnow separate yours from the other person’s. If your belongings are kept in one bag,observing silence is not possible. If you know someone, identify someone and he/shesits beside you, you are sure to ask him/her for this or that item. Conversation willnaturally follow. One, you are not used to observing silence and then if there is besideyou a known face with whom you are used to converse daily, conversation here willbe a sure possibility. And, silence is the most significant part of this camp. You haveto be very, very careful in maintaining silence. Not only in the hall but wherever yougo-in the room, in the bathroom or anywhere else-you must not talk to anybody at anyplace. You have to behave as if you do not know how to speak: you have becomedumb. You should dive into silence in this way.What Sort of Silence? Of course, we shall observe silence, but this never means that we shall become orseem to be sad. Our silence must not be sadness oriented. It should be smile oriented.We shall observe silence with a laughing face, laughing and smiling. And, this
  • 7. laughter and smile is not for anyone else, it is by you for your own self. You willsmile because you have to smile. You would not do so because someone else islooking at you or because some one acquainted with you is close by or is passing byyou. Your smile will not be for any reason, it will be without any reason whatsoever.This is what is called Ènand or ecstasy. This ecstasy is not the outcome of this or thatreason. On the other hand, pleasure is the effect of a cause. You should always keeplaughing, you should always keep smiling and you will never at any cost lose thissmile and laughter. You should make the resolution with yourself that your smile willremain whatever comes to happen. You may have headache, you might have a brokenfoot, but smile should always remain spread on your lips. You may like the food oryou may have to get up half way without taking the required food, but you will keepsmiling. You will never lose this smile. This is silence. This is purification of speech. During the observance of silence during this camp, some people think that sincethey do not have to converse, it will be useful to take along a book and read it. Let itbe emphasized that silence here means absolutely no use of words. Nothing to readand nothing to write. If there is anything important to be written, I shall tell you towrite. In case you feel that you have missed out something, there is nothing to worryabout. You may ask me, in writing, any question and any number of times. But youwill not write anything of your own. The prescription is not to write, read, speak ormake gestures. There is office downstairs. A telephone is also available there. You may get thetemptation to go there so as to make at least a phone call at home to find out that all iswell. As it is, there may not be cordiality in relations at home, but when one goes outto a village or some other place, one does remember home a few times. Maybe,distance adds to the affection. In that case you might get the feeling to go down andmake a call at home. But do not go even near the office or the phone. This is for yoursafety alone. In case you go to the office, you might meet someone not from the campand his waves, his feelings, his ideas might adversely affect you. The environmentfrom which he has come, the environment in which he has been living are all differentfrom yours. Why have you been asked to remain here during the tenure of the camp?This is to give you a different kind of environment so that you could observe a deep,very deep silence in that environment, an environment wherein you will be observingboth the inner and the outer silence. We are trying to build that kind of environment.If you meet someone from outside, the preparation being made here will get hindered,will go waste. So not going to the office and not meeting anyone from outside is foryour own welfare. It is not for the safety and welfare of anyone else. It will be yoursafety and it will be to your benefit.What is Prȇa? We have so far discussed body and speech. What is the third one? This is ourprȇa, the life-force. We know a very little of it. This body of ours is made up ofbones, flesh and blood. Beneath it is a subtle body which is made up of prȇa. This iscalled prȇa body. We shall also make endeavours at the purification of this body.We shall do this partly through the medium of speech and partly through that ofprȇÈyÈma.What is BhÈvanÈ?
  • 8. We shall purify the bhÈvanÈ through amiability, friendship, love andforgiveness. After that comes our consciousness. That consciousness will be purifiedthrough meditation. Thus, we shall do five kinds of purification-of body, of speech, ofprȇa, of bhÈvanÈ and of consciousness. If we put together all the five kinds ofpurification, it can well be called self-purification. During these three days we shalldive into self-purification. We shall practice it. We shall pay full, complete attentionon our own self, because this is the time when we shall be working on ourselves. Weshall pay absolutely no attention to the others-even if someone is having headache orsome other ailment or problem. You need not either think or speak about any one else.You have come here for your own sake, and you will see to your own benefit. Thereare so many volunteers here to look after others, to attend to their needs and alleviatetheir difficulties and problems. You must not pay attention to others. There is no needfor you to speak for anyone. Silence, everybody to his own self, is the rule. If youmust say something, write it down to convey. If anyone else has to say, he will do ithimself. You must remember this, and follow this strictly. This will meanself-purification. There are certain rules, certain prescriptions for self-purification, andwe have to follow them.What are the Rules? All of you might have read the rules while getting your name registered to attendthis camp. If some of you have not, I shall repeat the rules for their benefit and for thatof others. The first thing about the camp is that it will start at 12.00 noon today andconclude at 4.00 in the evening of the fourth day from today. You will have to stayput here for these four days. Whatever might happen to you or to the outside world,you will live here for this duration. You make the resolution that you will live herewhatever might happen. Nobody of you will come to me with the request that such athing has happened and for this he will have to go back home. You will not beallowed to go- whatever might be your compulsions. This rule is like the one underwhich a doctor takes a patient to the operation theatre. The doctor will first ask you ifyou would wish to be operated upon. Once you answer in the affirmative, the doctortakes you to the operation theatre, gives you the injection or anesthesia and theoperation starts, you cannot at that stage leave midway, saying that today half theoperation is all right and you will get the other half done some other day becausetoday you must go home for some urgent piece of work. Will the doctor let you go atthat stage? Such a decision is dangerous not only for you but also for the doctor. Incase such a patient dies, the blame will be unduly attributed to the doctor as well. Soeither you will not go to the operation theatre or if you go you will come out onlyafter the doctor completes the operation. This camp is also a similar thing. It is a sortof operation to be conducted by you on your self. You are your own doctor, your ownphysician and your own surgeon. You cannot go away leaving the treatment half way.And, once you start the treatment, there might come several problems which you willhave to face. If the wound has gone sour because of your earlier neglect, it will surepain now when you cleanse it and dress it. Suppose there is a bit of trash and rubbish lying on the floor of your house. Dustparticles will sure go up when you try to sweep off the floor to remove this rubbish.How can you expect a rose smell from there? It is therefore natural that body willexperience some pain when go in for its cleansing, its purification. If someone of youdevelops some physical or psychological problem, if someone develops restlessnessor insomnia, it is no cause to worry or get frightened. Keep on renewing the resolution
  • 9. that you will complete what you have begun and that during the duration of the campnothing is more important to you than the fulfillment of this resolve. Do not worryabout what might be happening at home or at shop or office. Spend your days hereunconcerned about the happenings of the outside world. Take it for this duration as ifyou have no family, no home and that you are a recluse. It is just a three-day longrenunciation. If you are so very keen, you may go back after three days or you mightstay here for another day. This is the first rule of this camp. Check up and confirm now if you have an urgent appointment tomorrowmorning or the day after. If it is so, let me know now. I shall relieve such a person justnow. But later on at night, I will not allow. If you have come with the mind to spendhere the first day and then decide whether or not to continue here the next day, it willnot do. Once we get started, your mind may or may not feel interested, you will haveto remain here till the conclusion of the camp. If there is such a person, please let meknow now. Later on it will not be possible for me to release anyone. It is just like aplane taking off, you cannot get down until and unless it lands. When the plane is inthe sky, you cannot say that I must jump down now, at this very moment. It is notpossible. This is the first rule. The second rule is the purification of food intake. Our body and mind areaffected by the kind of food we take. Here you will be provided with pure vegetarianand healthy food. It will be a bit different from the kind of food you take at yourhome. You sometimes get sweets, fried food and other eatables with a lot of pepper.At home you take tea, coffee, etc., but you will get none of these things here. Someamong you might be habitual of smoking, tobacco or any other kind of intoxicant, butyou will get no such thing here. However, you will get healthy vegetarian food daily.And, you will eat only what will be supplied here. You will not accept any eatablefrom outside for your intake. Purification of food is rather important. As we work on the body in differentways and as we work on our mind, on our consciousness in varied manners, foodconstitutes a significant part of the whole process. It plays a very important role inthis. Third, you will not take any sort of intoxicant. Some of you may have the habitof smoking or chewing tobacco, but you will not take any such during your camp. Incase, someone of you has brought along unknowingly-I am sure no one will havebrought such a thing knowingly and consciously-any intoxicant, he should hand thething over to me. Please all of you check the pockets of your shirts and trousersbecause some such thing might unwittingly have been put there. Any such thing nowhanded over to me will be given back to you after the duration of the camp. However,those who are chronic patients of diabetes, hypertension, liver or kidney and aretaking regular medicine for any of such ailments are advised to keep their medicinewith them and continue with their regular dose of it. However, you will not take thatmedicine which has not been recommended by a physician as daily dose for a chronicailment. This includes the lighter medicines, say for mild headache, for pain in this orthat part of body or for not getting proper sleep. In case you feel you need somemedicine, please let us know and we shall make arrangements for your requirements.But you will not take any medicine on your own. However, you may continue withthe medicines already prescribed by the physician. Still you will not make use of anymedicine for inducing sleep and for killing pain. You are advised to maximize the
  • 10. intake of water. You should take a lot of water because when we meditate, a lot ofheat is produced within the body. The most important among these rules is that you will remain in ecstasy in allcircumstances. If you are restless, get calm down: If you are calm, get happy; If you are happy, get ecstatic, And if you are ecstatic, get silent. ²SrÏ Ravisha×kar JÏ We have to live through this camp in this way-in ecstasy and in silence. We shallremain ecstatic come what may. If we sleep well, we shall be in ecstasy, but we shallbe in ecstasy even if we do not sleep well. We shall remain ecstatic if we are able toconcentrate or not able to concentrate on meditation. We shall enjoy the same ecstaticposition whether the mosquitoes bite us or not. We shall keep laughing throughoutthese days. We shall laugh heartily, whether laughter comes or not. You will see thatin the beginning, it might sound like artificial, a sort of drama. But you will neverknow when this drama will turn into truth. So we shall live here in complete ecstasy.Bondage of Twentieth Century What sort of bondage it is? This is the bondage of time. For example, you sit stillwrapt in some thought and someone comes and tells you that it is one o’clock, youwill automatically feel hungry. This is so because it is your lunch time. Anotherperson attuned to this lunch-time routine might say that it is still half an hour to gobefore one o’clock, therefore he is not yet hungry and that he will have lunch half anhour later. In other words, he is not hungry now, but will get hungry at one o’clock. Italso means that he does not feel the need for lunch because he is hungry but because itis one o’clock. Similarly, one might ask for the time. Is it 11 o’clock. šO, it is 11already; I feel sleepy’. This means sleep does not come when we feel sleepy, it comesat particular time or we want to go to bed not because of sleep but because of timefactor. We have become bound by time. Our mind has become so slave to time thatsuch things have become our second nature. This is a gift of the twentieth century. Wehave to get liberated from this habit. So you will not keep your watch with you, andwill hand it over to us. In case it is with you, you will now or then feel tempted tolook at it for time. And once our mind learns of the time, it will think of the work it issupposed to do at that point of time, and thus it will start its chain. So please handover your watches to us. And if you have any money on your person, or cell phone ormobile phone, please give over all such things to us. Please do not keep with youanything which is costly or which can help establish your contact with anybodyoutside here. It is only then that you will be able to fully concentrate and benefityourself with the purification of self.
  • 11. CHAPTER II MEDITATION : A BACKGROUND DhyÈna or meditation is an important word. The given word has its own valueand significance. The word is like a point pregnant with deep meanings. In fact,dhyÈna is the centralization of the scattered powers. And these powers are facing thedirection of the centre of the self. DhyÈna also means silence of the inner self. ¶chÈrya Amit Gati says: Ènand-rÊpam paramÈtmatattvam, samasta-sa×kalpavi- kalpa-muktam; swabhÈvalÏnÈ nivasanti nityam, jÈnÈti yogÏ swayameva tattvam. Thus where there is no sa×kalpa or volition and no vikalpa or alternative, thatcalm and silent stage is named dhyÈna. Looking at and listening to soham sound ofnatural and spontaneous breathing in (inhalation) and breathing out (exhalation)soothens and calms the thoughts. And when all thought stop, when they all calm downand mind becomes thought-free, such a stage is called dhyÈna. There are some similarities between sleep and dhyÈna. When one is in deepsleep, his mind is at peace. That is why we call it deep slumber. Otherwise, differentsorts of dreams keep coming and going. Similarly, when mind becomes flawless andcalm, only then can one achieve dhyÈna or we can say that one gets immersed indhyÈna.Difference Between DhyÈna and Sleep In deep sleep, our mind is thoughtless and at peace, but it is peace associatedwith unconsciousness. In dhyÈna, mind is at peace but associated with completeconsciousness. The second similarity between the two is that neither of them can beattained through conscious effort, with force or power. Both of them happenspontaneously. You cannot attain them through willing endeavour. Of course, it isnecessary to create internal and external background to let them happen. For example,you choose a proper place so that you can have a good sleep at night. Then you spreadproper bedding to lie down on it and take on light or heavy/woolen sheet over yourbody according to the weather at that time. You either switch off the light or put ondim light. You lie down in a relaxed posture and close your eyes. Thereafter, if sleepcomes, well and good, but if it still does not come, you cannot use force for it. Themore you will use your mind to make efforts to get sleep, the farther it will go fromyou and your mind will get equally restless. But if you leave your mind free, you never know when suddenly sleep overtakesyou. Similarly, we create internal and external background for attaining dhyÈna tohappen.External Background At a proper place and in a proper posture, with your eyes lightly closed whilekeeping your backbone straight, you should leave your body loose and relaxed and sitstill. This is the external background.Internal Background
  • 12. As we take our attention off the surrounding environ- ment, we pay our entireattention to look at and listen to the sound of soham of the natural and spontaneousbreathing in and breathing out. As we do so, our thoughts begin to calm down andwhen the thoughts get completely calm down, dhyÈna is accomplished. We cannotcalm down the thoughts with force The harder we try to check our thoughts, the morethey continue to increase. Thus, dhyÈna is not an effort, but just a happening. Still it isvery important and imperative to create external background for it to happen.Silence is Consciousness This entire world is a game of consciousness. The inner silence and nothingnessis the basis of the creation of everything including sciences, mathematics, language,art, poetry, music, metaphysics and so on. After entering into silence, the door opensfor innumerable possibilities. Thus, when a person enters silence, he undergoes multi-dimensional progress. His consciousness also develops.
  • 13. CHAPTER III DHY¶NA : PRACTICAL FORM AND ACHIEVEMENT [Dr. Shiv MunijÏ, ¶chÈrya of the ƒrama‡ Sa×gh, has been a very well knownscholar, orator, spiritually enlightened and a guiding spirit to many seekers of spiritualknowledge. With the help of his deep study, experience and experiments he has ledmany on the path to high spirituality. All including the old, the young and the smallchildren are benefiting from his teachings on methods of dhyÈna and its application. In the following pages are published those discourses and addresses of the¶chÈrya which he gave to the seekers of higher knowledge. The readers of thesepages can also benefit by understanding the practical form of dhyÈna.] Even those who are absolutely ignorant of and unfamiliar with the practice ofdhyÈna often use the word in their daily life. For example, they quite often ask ‘readwith care (dhyÈna),’ ‘listen with care’ and ‘do the work with care’. This speaks forthe popularity of the word throughout the world. In the field of sÈdhnÈ, the worddhyÈna is a concept. It implies making your mind reflect or concentrate on the soul(Ètman) which is like the supreme Lord or turning the mind inwards from outwardworld. Just as a fish ever remains deep inside the water, similarly when mind aftermoving away from the ideas and rituals absorbs itself in the soul, it is dhyÈna ormeditation. Meditation occupies the highest place in both the Vedic and „rama‡ic traditions.In the preceding pages we have made only doctrinal analysis of it. It is necessary toknow the practical or experimental method of meditation along side its thoroughdoctrinal knowledge. We either study or learn from others to understand a doctrineand then after following it we try to transform our life. Thus, it is only aftermeditating and realizing its accomplishment in practice that life can become pleasantand joyous. First of all we shall try to understand the content of meditation. Many of youmight have read somewhat or listened from others on the subject of meditation.Maybe, a few amongst you might have practiced it as well. However, when you listennow to the lectures on this topic, listen to them from a new perspective. In fact,listening is also an art. Often, as we listen, we do so on the basis of our own history,on the basis of our sa×skÈra. You have already formed a pre-conceived notion ofwhat meditation means, and you have formed this notion thinking it to be the rightone. If you listen to what I say with that pre-conceived notion already in mind, youwill agree with me if my ideas are identical with your earlier notion. However, if myideas are not identical with that notion, you will wonder as to why I speak as I havebeen, and that meditation does not mean what I try to convey. In other words, youhave already made up your mind that meditation means this and this.You have cometo the meditation camp. Let it be an experiment for you. What is meant by the wordexperiment? In experiment, you never know the final result to be arrived at, but stillyou agree to give your cent per cent in making the experiment a success. Whatevermight be the final outcome, you always give your maximum in the experiment. Thismeditation camp is a sort of journey into the unknown. Yes, since there have alreadytaken place so many camps, I can say with a certain degree of assurance that this and
  • 14. this will happen during the camp. Even then the world of consciousness is the worldof the unknown. Who knows what might happen and how that might happen? Ourduty is to do, to perform but the result or the reward of that performance is not in ourpower. You should go ahead with this camp with the presumption that this meditationcamp is a blessing. And, when a person is under the blessings, whatever happens isfor his well being. We have to go through this experiment with this kind of feeling inmind. What is meditation? How to define it? What do you think of it? If you are askedto meditate, what do you understand of it? First of all, I will ask the audience here asto what meditation means. You will tell me whatever you think of the word. The various responses from the audience can be summed up as under:  Concentration  Control over mind  Mental journey from one world to the other  State of being liberated  Reflection on soul  Cessation of the course of cognition  Sit in a state of nothingness  End of Asssumptions  Feeling of being in Divine proximity  Removing the defilements  One-pointedness of mind All these answers mean almost the same thing. Of course, it is very difficult to define the word dhyÈna in a few words orsentences. Kahlil Zibran has said that he used to write quite long and voluminouspoems on love until he had not been in love; the day he experienced love, he did notknow how to express or describe it. All the words seemed small. Similar is the casewith dhyÈna. So what is dhyÈna? How to define it? According to the universally accepted andknown view, it means concentration of mind, to apply it to one point. That is whypeople ask as to who or what should be concentrated upon? I conducted a meditation camp at JalÈnÈ. Three days of the camp were over. Onthe concluding day, it was time for asking questions. One from amongst theparticipants asked me: ‘You repeatedly ask us to meditate, to concentrate, but what orwho should we concentrate upon? I asked him what he has done during the last three days. He said: ‘I had been thinking of this. Concentration on breathing and such otherthings is all right, but concentra- tion? What is to be concentrated upon? From dhyÈna, we generally understand to concentrate on something orsomebody. Often people think of concen- trating on a particular photograph, onrepeatedly reciting a given mantra, on some person, a spiritual preceptor, or somesuch person. To concentrate the mind and apply to any of such things is generally
  • 15. taken to mean dhyÈna. The general masses think that concentration is meditation. Infact, majority of the people think so. I have met a large number of people who thinkalmost on the same lines, i.e. meditation means concentrating the mind on a givenpoint. Concentration of mind is the important thing. If mere concentration of mind were dhyÈna or meditation, it would have been avery easy thing to do. It would not have been difficult at all. Mind gets concentrated ifwe do something in which we feel pleasure. For example, someone might beinterested in music and he might take pleasure listening to it. You daily find childrenwatching television, with their mind fully concentrated on the programme they arewatching and they get completely oblivious of the surroundings. They either will notrespond even to their mother’s call or at least will refuse to get away from thetelevision. They get deeply involved in what they watch. Their mind gets concentratedon the television. When you count money, how is it that your mind gets concentratedon the job. O course, the mind wavers often. Normally, it goes to what happenedyesterday or before that. But while counting the currency notes, it is concentrated onthe job so that counting does not go wrong. This is a human example. Take theinstance of a cat: it is all concen- tration while preying on the rat. It looks intent, not asingle hair of its body moves. DHY¶NA ² NOT CONCENTRATION OF MIND If mere concentration of mind is taken to mean dhyÈna, then you should put yourmind on a thing you love to do, it will get concentrated on that. Had mentalconcentration been the same thing as dhyÈna, I need not have asked you to look at thebreath. I could have easily procured a good movie for you to watch. Your mind wouldhave concentrated on the movie. None of you would have complained of the pain inthe foot or ache of the back. People sit for three long hours to watch a movie. There isonly a 10-minute-long interval in between. At that time, nobody complains thatwatching a movie for such a long time was quite painful to his foot or back. Here inthe camp, half an hour-half an hour is too long a period, even 10-15 minutes ofdhyÈna- seems ages to them and they complain whether the organizers have no watchwith them! Time, it seems, has stopped moving. And, watching a movie you sit for such along time and still say you never knew how the time flew past. If I say it might bebecause of sitting cross-legged on the floor, I shall also suggest you sit in the chairand see the result. If you feel it is hot out over here, I shall suggest you sit under thefan. It will not make much difference to your feelings. As it is, there is a lot ofdifference between your mental make-up as you watch a movie and that as you try tomeditate or concentrate on the breath. In the former situation, it is like adding fire tothe already burning fire of desires and temptations within you. I can give you anillustration from our life of yester years. Those days people used to cook food on firein the hearth. After the food was cooked, people used to put the fire in the hearth off.For this purpose, they would sprinkle water on the fire. Do you know what happens ifyou sprinkle water on the fire? A sound of shnnnn comes. Why does this sound come?The answer is simple: fire is hot and the water cold. If and when two opposites meettogether, there is bound to be some reaction. If a reaction occurs, there is bound to besome sort of noise or sound. And, if you add some ghee or oil to the fire, there will beno noise and the fire in the hearth will continue to burn. Why? In this case, we addfire to the fire and that is why no reaction took place.
  • 16. In the same way, within each one of us burns the fire of desires and feelings. Asort of stimulation or excitement is there within us. This keeps the fire of desires andfeelings burning. This excitement or stimulation is ever within. What happens whenyou watch a movie or indulge in some other entertainment? A little more fire getsadded to the already burning fire within us. Thus, nothing, no reaction takes place.Time flies past. Three hours or even six hours. You just do not feel it. Some peoplecan go on watching movies throughout the night. Some parents share with us that theirchildren continue watch the television all through the night. As I said earlier, they donot feel sleepy, because it is fire being added to the fire. Look, what happens here? It is just half an hour before you started themeditation, and you feel drowsy. This happens because here water is being sprinkledon fire. When cold water falls on the fire of desires and feelings, reaction will be thereand there will be some sound. It is that very reaction which we sometimes call pain inthe feet, pain in the neck, back ache, restlessness, wavering of mind, the question ofwhen will this come to an end, etc. All this is the result of water being added to the fire. If a housewife says, since areaction takes places and a sound comes, water need not be put on the fire in thehearth. It would mean that fire in the hearth will continue to burn. Perhaps, it willnever be put off. But a wise housewife would say, ‘whatever the sound or reaction, Imust extinguish the hearth-fire since I do not need it after cooking the food.’ Thewisdom of the devotee lies in his determination not to be bothered by the sound or thereaction, but keep firm on his resolve to extinguish the fire. This is the primarydifference between the spiritual endeavour and entertainment.Yoga Discipline a Must The famous PÈta¤jalÏ YogasÊtra begins with the words ‘athayogÈnushÈsanam’. A free rendering of these words into English would run as-nowbegins the discipline of the yoga. May it be yoga or meditation, the path of thedevotee is marked by discipline. Why is discipline so important and necessary? Theanswer is: this is the way on which first comes pain. Mind fails to stick to it. Itcontinues to waver. There is restlessness. To check the mind and to overcome allother obstacles, you will have to follow certain do’s and don’ts. These stipulations area must. For example, you will have to keep your eyes closed. You will have toobserve silence. This implies discipline and regulations to be observed. These arenecessary because we all know that mind will not remain concentrated without allthese. Suppose there are no such stipulations and regulations and you are given thefreedom either to keep silence or continue with whatever conversation you want. Howmany of you will prefer to observe silence? If you are given the option to meditate aslong as you wish and go to sleep when you wish and continue to sleep as long as youwish. How long will you continue with meditation? We all know the answer! It is difficult for man to meditate. We do not have much control over our bodyand mind. We wish to, but we cannot because our body and mind do no cooperate.Mind wavers. Discipline is necessary to keep both the body and mind to keep on theright path.A Little Suffering : Immense Joy The path of yoga and meditation is such as brings pain and suffering, dilemmasand restlessness in the beginning. However, those who go across willingly and
  • 17. laughingly without bothering for the pain in the foot or aching back or restlessness ofmind ultimately achieve the ecstasy. This ecstasy is immense and immeasurable. Howis the path of entertainment? It looks rather fine to begin with, and mind gets easilyattracted to it. However, this is only for a brief while. Later on, pain and suffering inmountain-like proportions await us. A little bit of pleasure and many times moresuffering. This is what is in store ahead if mind is given freedom to indulge inentertainment and to run after the fulfillment of desires. On the way to spiritualendeavour, there is a little suffering in the beginning, but later on it is followed bymany times more joy and ecstasy. What is the pain or suffering? Just a little. What we now feel is either a bit ofpain in the foot or headache or backache or a little restlessness. Have you never feltsuch a pain in life earlier? It might have happened many times before. You mighthave fallen ill on several occasions. What was the result of that ailment? Nothingmuch. But the way we are now endeavouring to tread is marked by a little pain in thebeginning, a little bit of dilemma and suffering. I appreciate that you might not havesat in this posture earlier. Thus a little bit of pain is natural. However, if you gothrough it joyously, you will then go steady further on the way.Concentration of Mind : Result of DhyÈna It is a generally accepted assumption that concentration of mind is meditation. Ifmeditation were just concentration of mind, it would have been quite an easier thing.But meditation does not mean mere concentration of mind. Meditation is not mereconcentration. By meditating, mind gets concentrated: this is the effect of meditation.But this is not meditation itself. Through meditation concentration can be achieved,but concentration does not imply meditation.Emptiness of Mind : Result of DhyÈna The second assumption about meditation is that making mind empty, makingmind calm is meditation. The ability to empty mind of all ideas and feelings and tomake it calm is also said to imply meditation. It also implies that relaxation of mind ismeditation. If making mind empty of thoughts and ideas and feelings were meditation,it would have been a very easy thing. In that case, there would have been no needeither to sit on the ground in a specific posture or to look and concentrate on thebreath. If one wants just a calm mind, an empty mind, one should just go and sleepunder a fan. Body might feel at ease. And, when you are in deep slumber, your mindis generally empty, your mind with no ideas and feelings. In fact, such a mental stateis called deep slumber. Mind is not free of feelings and ideas until it keeps dreaming.And, when there are no ideas and feelings in the mind, you go to deep slumber. If emptying your mind of all thoughts and feelings were meditation, then bothsleep and meditation would have been synonymous. They would have been one andthe same thing. But, they are not one and the same thing; there is a lot of differencebetween the two. What is that difference? Emptiness of mind is a state that comesduring the meditation. In a way, it is an effect of the meditation. It can also be calledan achievement of dhyÈna. However, you empty your mind of all thoughts and youhave meditated, it is not so.DhyÈna : Return to Primordial State
  • 18. Now the question arises: what is dhyÈna? How can we define it? Everything hasits own primordial state. For example, the inherent nature or original state of water iscoolness. If you want to heat it up, you will have to make some effort for it. It willhave to be placed on fire. Water will hot up only if we heat it either with the help ofelectricity or solar energy. But if we leave the water to itself, it will soon go back toits original state. And, the original nature of water, as we said earlier, is coolness.What is the inherent nature of fire? Heat or warmth. Similarly, there is also an originalstate of your being. To come back to that original state is called dhyÈna. What will you have to do to return to the original state?  You will have to overpower your mind;  You will have to remain conscious;  Soul will have to be purified;  Resolution will have to be made;  Body will have to be given up;  Mind will have to concentrate;  Feeling of friendship will have to be developed;  Body and mind will have to be kept separate;  Pure vegetarian and sÈtvik (healthy) food will have to be taken;  Self will have to be tested;  Mind will have to be firm;  Thoughts will have to be centralized;  Become inactive and inert; and  Masks will have to be removed. Now if I ask you a question, the answer to it will help you a lot. What will haveto be done to make hot water cool? Nothing at all, because coolness is the originalnature of water. Something will have to be done only if we have to warm or hot it up.You will have to either put on fire or switch on the electric heater or put it in the sun.But if you have to cool it, place it anywhere and do nothing. It will cool down of itsown.Original State : Doing Nothing Are you following what I say? If fire is to be extinguished (made cool),something will have to be done. If the fire burns and you wish that it keeps burning,just do nothing and let it burn. In other words, no conscious effort is required for athing to return to its original state of being. The original state implies the inherentnature of the given thing or which is not the effect of an external cause. The originalstate means the state in which a particular things remains of its own. If water is cold,there is not external reason for it being so. Of course, it will heat up only because ofsome reason, as an effect of a cause. No reason or cause is needed to make or let itremain cool. Water is cold because its original, inherent nature is so. This is its nature.Similarly, will you have to make an effort to return to your original state? Nothing,absolutely nothing.Difficulty of Doing Nothing
  • 19. It is very easy to say ‘do nothing’, but it is equally difficult to put this intopractice, i.e. to do nothing. Apparently it seems the easiest of thing to do nothing.After all, it asks you to do nothing. Just look at yourself for five minutes and you willrealize that our body does so many things during a brief spell of five minutes. It mightbe quite difficult for the body to remain inactive, doing nothing for five minutes.Mind is much more alert and active than body. Think of what your body did duringthe past five minutes. Sometimes your hand went beneath the feet and many timesyour foot was beneath the hand. Sometimes your finger went into your ear and atother times it combed your hair. It was quite rare that you sat still. How many thingsdid your body do during the last five minutes? First, you have to do nothing with your body. Then, your power of speech hasalso to be made inactive. Now I have asked you to observe silence. I can see some ofyou observe this only as long as they apprehend that I am near about and looking atthem, but as soon as they get an opportunity to go away from my sight and they aresure that no one is looking at them, they begin conversation. Still, body and speechare under our control at least to some extent, say five to ten per cent. But what is to bedone with the mind? OK, you are asked not to do anything with your mind. The moreyou think of not doing anything, the more this mind will run hither and thither.Yoga’s Inactivity and Original State Body-mind-speech is yoga. When all these three-body, mind and speech-aremade inactive, only then man can be called to be in his original state. Now you will donothing with your body. Be completely still and calm. You will not speak at all. Andwhen your mind will also become still, you will realize the transformation goinginside you. What will you feel? Peace or restlessness? Joy or sorrow? Ecstasy? Whatis your original state-whether it is peaceful or restlessness or full of joy or sorrow orfull of ecstasy?DhyÈna and Sleep There is somewhat similarity between dhyÈna and sleep. When you are indhyÈna, you are in a position of inactivity, doing nothing. You are in the sameposition when you are asleep. However, there is a major difference as well. Duringsleep you are unaware of yourself because you are in a state of unconsciousness.However, during meditation, you are fully aware of yourself because you are in a stateof consciousness. In other words, if consciousness is added to sleep, the latter willbecome dhyÈna or medita- tion. To put the same idea in different words, add someunconsciousness with the meditation, and it will become sleep. DhyÈna or meditation thus implies a state of nothing- ness, of doing absolutelynothing. Still, one remains fully aware, conscious during this state. Our mind ishabitual of often remaining in two states. One, it should do something- think, reflect,speak, listen, walk or any such other activity. You might have felt that as you get upin the morning, mind starts functioning of its own. You look at this or that thing, youread and write and you do various other things. If you have no important thing to do,you will start watching television or listening to the radio or go out for a walk. And ifyou still have nothing to do, you will ring up someone and just disturb him or her. Butyou must do something because you cannot remain inactive. And, if you decide to donothing, no phone call or television or radio, you will just go to sleep. This impliesyou will either be indulgent or just go to sleep. DhyÈna or meditation is a stage in
  • 20. between these two, a sort of middle path. It is neither indulgence nor sleep. It iscomplete detachment but full consciousness, state of alertness.Inhaling and Exhaling As we have seen above, dhyÈna means to return to one’s original state of peace,ecstasy and consciousness. Neither body will be involved in doing anything nor powerof speech will be active nor mind will be active. All the three-body, speech andmind-will become completely inactive and still, but your self will remain fullyconscious. This is called dhyÈna. Emptiness coupled with conscious- ness. You arefully conscious yet you are not in a position to do anything. If we want to reach thisstate, our breathing can be of much help to us. It provides a lot of co-operation.Breathe naturally, spontaneously. Let it come in and go out as it does in its ownnatural way. Now some people will say that they have to look at the breathing buttheir mind does not concentrate on this. Why not? You can also concen- trate yourmind on anything else, any colour, any form, but you must make the mind concentrateon something. Someone also asked me a question that we try to concentrate our mind on breathon my asking, but if it is to be concentrated, why not concentrate it on God, on theName Divine. Let me tell you that you can concentrate your mind on God or God’sname or on some incantation instead of on breath, and I am sure you will succeedbecause the former is a much easier task than the latter one. However, our aim is notjust to concentrate the mind. Our aim is to reach a state of complete inertia, absoluteinactivity and still remain fully conscious. The form, colour, mantras, etc. cannot take you to the position where I wish youto reach. On the other hand, the breath can easily take you there. That is why we takethe help of breath-control. In case you recite some given incantation, it will not bemeditation, it will be recitation. I agree, recitation, recitation of divine Name is notbad. It is something commendable. But this is not meditation. And, we are here formeditation. Therefore, you have to supplement breath-control with nothing, absolutelynothing else. It should be a pure, spontaneous natural breathing. Someone else had asked me that mind is difficult to focus, it wavers time andagain. He had asked for an answer: what should he do? Whatever you will do is sureto help mind waver even more. Wavering of mind is an activity. How can we annulthis activity with another activity? The only way out is inactivity, complete inertia. Ifthe mind runs hither and thither, let it go. You should keep your body still. The moreyou will keep the body still, the more it will be helpful to keep the mind focused. Ourbody and mind are two only for saying, otherwise they are in essence one. Theycannot be separated, one from the other. It would be like try to separate water fromthe steam. The latter is the product of the former and cool down the latter and it willtake the former shape. In other words, both are the two different states of one matter.Unity of Body and Mind SwÈmÏ SatyÈnand SaraswatÏ says that body is the gross form of mind which issubtle. In other words, mind is the subtle form of body which is gross in nature.Whatever happens in and to the body has an immediate effect on the mind. You mighthave realized that whenever there is pain in any part of the body, the mind getsdisturbed and becomes restless. Similarly, if the mind is disturbed or upset, the bodywill share the same feeling. All this goes to show that body and mind are one. If you
  • 21. study a little deep, you will understand this sense of unity between the two. That iswhy when your body is healthy, this helps to keep your mind stable and focused. I donot mean here that you must not move your body or change a bit of your posture ifthere is a lot of pain. In that case you are free to change your posture somewhat. Butbe careful of what you have to do while changing the posture. Your attention, yourmind should remain focused on breath as you do this. In other words, change theposture while still looking at the breath. Eyes should also remain closed. You willrealize this will help in providing peace to mind. Second, if mind is disturbed, do not feel upset or restless because of this. If mindis upset and does not concentrate, our undue consciousness of it will become anotherreason for this restlessness. It will amount to the same if I say that I get highlyannoyed because I get annoyed repeatedly. Why do I feel angry with myself? This isbecause I get angry quite often. Anger leading to anger! If your mind is upset, pleasedo not feel very upset or disturbed on this count. Do not bother for the momentwhether the mind is calm or upset. It should be all right with you in both situations.Your primary, your sole duty now is to look at the breath. I shall also look at thebreath, whether my mind is calm or disturbed.Consciousness/Alertness Now look, what time approximately it should be. This is the time around whichmost of you might normally be returning home from your shops. It is not very latestill. Some people might yet be taking their dinner. Still look at the faces of some ofthe participants: they feel sleepy. Some can be seen yawning. Why this? The answeris: whenever the mind gets a bit disturbed, it knows of only one thing and that is sleep.Whenever you find yourselves in such a state, try to come out of it. Once you enterthat state of mind, you are gone. Some people ask me if they have only to meditate,why sitting in a given posture and why not lying down? My answer to them is that it is possible to meditate while lying down. But whatwill happen then? You will not realize when you come out of that meditation ordhyÈna. Two or three hours of meditation. And, you will not know what might havebeen happening on your right or left. You feel sleepy even when you sit and sleep isnatural when you lie down. So meditation is possible while lying down, but at thisstage our mind is not so enlightened that we can do so in that state. So my advice isthat we should do it while sitting. Even in the sitting posture when you feel that it hasbeen quite long sitting or you feel sleepy while sitting, it is advisable to stand up.Meditate standing on your place. You can meditate in a standing posture as well. It isnot obligatory for you to sit, you can meditate while standing. If you feel difficulty insitting without any support, you can take the support. If someone, for example, has aknee problem, he can make use of a chair. The only precaution is to keep yourselfawake and alert/conscious.Conclusion I hope all of you have understood what I told you about dhyÈna. What isdhyÈna? Become inert but remain alert and awake. To arrive at that stage, our breathwill help us a lot. How does it help? Why is it necessary to merely look at thebreathing. Why not anything else? We shall take up these questions tomorrow. Thiswill suffice for today. Now, once again, we will sit inert and in peace for five minutesand meditate for a while.
  • 22. Some Important Instructions Along with dhyÈna (meditation) yoga, has also to be done regularly. For yogaexercise, it will be better to wear loose clothes. Tight jeans trousers, necktie, etc. arenot helpful, rather they are hindrances. Put on loose dress. Similarly, ladies may alsowear the kind of loose dress that suits them. Then we shall start yoga exercises. Theregular yoga practice makes it easier to sit in a dhyÈna posture. Pure vegetarian andsÈtvik (healthy) food is also necessary along with yoga. Non-vegetarian and spicy(rajasÏ and tÈmasÏ) food is an obstacle on the way to meditation.
  • 23. CHAPTER IV DHY¶NA : ITS PRACTICAL FORM AND ACHIEVEMENT-II Yesterday we has some reflections on dhyÈna (medita- tion) and tried to explainas to what is meant by dhyÈna. Today we have to understand how our breathing helpsus reach this stage. Why did we choose breath alone? We could have possibly chosensomething else as well, e.g., some incantation, some form, but we finally decided infavour of breath. Why? What is so special in breath? What made us finally choosebreath?Background of DhyÈna²Method There are some special reasons for this choice of ours. In a way, we can also saythat there is no particular reason for this. Why is this method as it is? The answer is:this method is as it is because it has reached us from our spiritual mentors; thismethod has evolved as such. There is an old Jaina text called ¶chÈra×ga SÊtra.¶chÈrya ¶tmÈ RÈm, who was the spiritual mentor of Dr. Shiv Muni who happens tobe the present ¶chÈrya and head of the ƒrama‡ic Sa×gh, has been the first JainaÈchÈrya. He was a great savant : he was a great scholar and an enlightened being aswell. What is the characteristic of knowledge? One such characteristic is that aknowledgeable, an enlightened person should never get involved in polemic.Whenever he finds the possibility of polemic, he should take along dialogue. ¶chÈrya ¶tmÈ RÈm was known as a great scholar and an enlightened person. Itis said that when he was an old man of 83 years, he fell down on the floor and thebone of one of his feet got broken at three places. His spontaneous reaction was that ifit had broken into three, let it be. He was beyond all pain and pleasure, joy andsorrow, appreciation and denunciation. People around him advised that he must go infor operation. When they insisted a lot, he agreed to go in for operation. But he putforward a condition. He will get his foot operated but will not take anaesthesia. Iwould like to see the doctor how he operates my foot. There was those days a German doctor by the name of Virgin. He operated uponthe ¶chÈrya’s foot. The operation took about three and a half hours to complete. The¶chÈrya sat calm and continued to watch how the doctor went with the operation. Infact, to begin with, the doctor was not willing to operate without giving anaesthesia tothe patient: he was afraid lest some calamity should happen to him. However, the¶chÈrya remained adamant, saying that he may go ahead with the operation if hewants to do but it will have to be without anaesthesia. He even told the doctor that hewas not in need of any operation. At last the doctor gave in and operated upon his footwithout giving him any anaesthesia. The ¶chÈrya sat calm and watched through everymovement of the doctor. At last the operation was completed. The ¶chÈrya asked thedoctor to ring up his home as his wife seems to have forgotten to lock home. Thedoctor wondered and asked how he knew this as he sat far away from the doctor’shome. The ¶chÈrya again asked him to be quick and ring up his wife as she was aboutto leave home. At the moment she stood in his bed room. He also told that their bedroom was in that particular direction in their home. The doctor rang up his house. Whatever the ¶chÈrya had told was true.
  • 24. This is what we call the third eye, the divine eye. This is the capability to seewhat is not visible to the physical eye. ¶chÈrya ¶tmÈ RÈm in his exegesis of the SÊtras has described this method, butnobody has been able to compre- hend it. Several years have gone by since he passedaway, but nobody has since then taught this way to meditation. ¶chÈrya Shiv Muni,the author of this book, went through this literature and discovered this method. WhenShiv Muni was working for his doctoral degree, he realized that all the TÏratha×karsof Jainism did nothing except meditation. It is not the case only with Jainism, youlook at any religious tradition and you will find meditation discussed there. This madehim resolve to comprehend the view of ¶chÈrya ¶tmÈ RÈm and discover the method.He did succeed, but he was not yet satisfied. The research continued and continuedand ultimately he found this method in the ¶chÈra×ga SÊtra. It is this method whichwe are going to practice today.Method of Inhalatation and Exhalation To remain alert and conscious while still being inert and inactive is calleddhyÈna or meditation. What we mean here is that consciousness be rationed whileremaining inert and inactive. This is dhyÈna or meditation. The dhyÈna is a stagemidway between indulgence and sleep. Breath helps us reach the stage of completedenial, inertia and inactivity. How does it help? In a way, breathing is an activity. Itseems as if we breathe in and breath out, and continue doing so repeatedly. However,breathing while still being an activity is not an activity. How? Let me explain this.Suppose a person gets unconscious. Will he in that state be able to take his food byhimself? Can he drink water? No, he cannot take food or water. Can he move about?No, he cannot move about, either. In fact, he cannot perform any of the necessaryactivities of body. Still that unconscious person breathes. This implies that you do notmake any effort to breathe. It may sound strange to say you breathe but still you donot breathe, i.e., make no effort to breathe. Breathing goes no naturally. The activityof breathing in and breathing out continues of its own. In case you were to take thebreath and sometime you forgot to breathe, this might have caused a serious problem.It has been a favour by God that He did not leave this duty into you. In that case youwould have forgotten to breathe at same point of time and consequently this life mighthave gone by now. Man forgets so many things and it is natural he might haveforgotten one day to breathe. And, this would not have given him an opportunity torepent. Breathing is a natural activity. If I say you breathe and If I say breathing comesin and out of its own, both the statements can be accepted as true. Actually, you haveto make no conscious effort to breathe. When you are asleep, you cannot do anything,but you breathe. You do not know of it, but breathing continues. This means, this isnot you who take the breathe, but breathing goes on of its own. This also implies thatbreathing is both an activity and inactivity. It can be said to be an activity, but actuallyit is an inactivity. It can be said that you do it, but actually it goes on of its own. Solong body is conscious, it will continue to breathe for its own sake and of its own. What happens when you look at the breath? You move from the world of actionto the world of inaction. You do nothing with the body and the mind is made toconcentrate on the breath which means that your mind is also not doing anything.Mind merely looks at the inhalation and exhalation of breath and does nothingbecause the breathing goes of its own. Similarly, the body is also not doing anything
  • 25. because breathing is a natural process for which body has to do nothing. Remainingconscious, breathing, and being in the present means doing nothing. You should halt awhile here. Breath is like a pathway, a bridge which leads us from indulgence tonothingness, from action to inaction. That is why we have chosen the breath. Whatwould have happened had we chosen a mantra, an incantation? We should haverepeatedly recited that and that would have become an action, an activity in itself. Hadthe choice been of a portrait, we could have imagined it time and again and tried toconcentrate our mind on that. That would also have become an activity. For thisreason, we have chosen the breath. There is another beautiful thing about breath. Youmay or may not consciously wish it, but breathing must bring you in the present. Is itpossible for you to look at the breath you took say ten minutes earlier? You may wishit very much, you cannot do it. Similarly, it you wish to look just now at the breaththat you intend taking say after ten minutes from now, you cannot do that either. Thenwhich breath can you see? You can look at the breath that you are just now breathingin and breathing out. In other worlds, if you have to look at the breath, you will haveto bring yourself to the present. We can also say that whenever you are with thebreathing, you are in the present. You cannot be either in the past or the future.Nobody ever asked you to discard either past or future, but looking at the breath madeyou discard both and live and in the present.Breath : A Complete Life The first good thing about breathing, as we told you, has been that it bring you ²quite spontaneously ² to the present. The second good thing about it is that the wholelife is linked with breathing. Whatever you might do in life, breathing is ever withyou. You may go anywhere in the world, you may be in India or America, you may beawake or asleep, you may be having your food or walking about, you may be doinganything, breath is there always with you. You might have seen, whenever a child is born ² he may be born in a rich familyor a poor family, he may have born in India or anywhere else in the world ² he weepsthe first thing after coming into the world. As he weeps, everybody else laughs. Incase he does not weep, everybody else might have to weep. If he does not weep, thedoctor sure is to hit or pinch him lightly so as to make him weep. The doctor knowsthat his failure to make the child weep is sure to cause grief to others. What I mean tosay here is that the first thing that the child does after his birth is weeping. And, heweeps quite loudly. Why? What is the problem with him? Why does he weep? What do you think? Why does the child weep? šHis lungs expand.› If the lungs expand, there is no need to weep; he can laugh also. šHe weeps because he enters into new environments.› Enters into new environments. The poor little thing. Inside it is utter darknesswhile outside it is light. This being better environment, he should laugh. šHe weeps for coming into light from darkness.› I think this fact of coming out of darkness into light should make him happy.Then why does the poor thing weep?
  • 26. šHe feels the pain.› Does he feel pain? Does it pain to take birth? šHe has now to breathe in through his nose. This is why he weeps.› He has to breathe in through nose.... He does not know this. That is why hebreathes in and out through his mouth. šThe reason is his separation from mother.› Separation from mother... got away from mother. Suffers from pangs ofseparation? I think, once away, he does not bother as to who gave him birth. šHe weeps because now he has been burdened with worldly responsibilities.› Worldly responsibilities, you say. Ok, once he is born into this world, he willnaturally grow up into youth. He will have to go to school, study and then ultimatelyget married to someone. I think it is enough burden for him!! šHe weeps and cries for his soul.› What? He weeps and wails for his soul to come? It sounds ridiculous. Strangethat he weeps for his soul to come into his body as he has already taken birth! The question still remains. Why does the child weep? All right, I shall myselfanswer the question. Otherwise, I am sure varied and strange answers will keeppouring, ranging from the expansion of lungs to crying out for the soul to the pangs ofseparation. What is the reality behind this? In fact, the child seems to us to beweeping, otherwise he does not weep at all. He sounds to be weeping, but actually hedoes not weep. We presume he is weeping. So long as he is in his mother’s womb, itis natural for him to do whatever his mother does. When his mother breathes, he alsotakes breath. When his mother takes the meal, it reaches him automatically. Now hehas come out. So long as he remained in his mother’s womb, his lungs werecompletely shrunk, absolutely non²functional. As he comes out of his mother’s body,he cries loudly. In fact, it is no weeping or crying. It is the opening up of the lungs butwe seem to take as if he were weeping. When the child is born, the thing that he does after coming out of his mother’sbody is to breathe in. And do you know what is the last thing that a person does beforehe dies? He breathes out, but cannot breathe in. He stops breathing.Birth and Death We learn that life begins with breathing and it ends with the stopping ofbreathing. In other words, breathing is life and end to breathing is death. In betweenthese two points lies our worldly existence. All joys and sorrows of life, all laughterand weeping, all meetings and separations, all friendships and enmity, all good andevil thoughts of mind are related to breath. This means when you look at the breath,you look at the entire life. Breathing is not just breath going in and out. Entire life of ours is related tobreath. Just the feelings of mind change, pace of breathing also changes. Breathingand body, breathing and mind, breathing and prȇa, all these things are deeply andintimately connected with each other. We can also say that breathing is a thread whichties body-speech-mind together. When you are with the breath, you are with youentire self, your entire entity. The whole entity of your stops with you in the present.
  • 27. You might have thus realized when you began the process of looking at the breathing,what happened to your thoughts in a matter of moment. Did they come in abundanceor they got decreased. We have just to see if more or less thoughts come to us afterthat. The answer obviously is that they became less. Why did they get less? Did youthink of this? Whenever you happened to be with you breathing, whenever you lookedat your breathing, what happened to the thoughts? To begin with, they were quite amany, but what started happening gradually? They got less and less Earliest, theirpace was quite fast. Then this pace became slow. Why this change ² in numbers and inpace? The answer is simple : the mind got connected with breathing. When mind getsconnected with breathing, what change did you see in the number and pace ofthoughts? It happened so because mind got related with breathing.Preparation Within and Without First of all, we sit in any posture of our choice. We keep our back, waist andneck straight. We close our eyes. We put our hands on our knees or just place them inthe lap. We take the spectacles off. This is the preparation without. The second preparation is the preparation within. What is that? You put yourmind on the breathing in and out. On the basis of these two preparations, mindspontaneously concentrates. Thus, meditation is called a happening, it is not an action.It happens of its own. It cannot be done with forced effort. However, you have toprepare a background for it to happen. We discussed the similarity between meditation and sleep in the preceding pages.Let me add here that there is one more similarity between the two. You cannot makeyourself sleep with any forced effort: sleep comes of its own. For example, you go tosleep at night. Before that, you fix your bed, change your dress, take on the quilt orsomething if the weather so demands or put the fan on if the weather is hot. Then youlie down on the bed and close your eyes. Now it is for the sleep to come or not tocome. If you do not get sleep, you cannot force it. You cannot compel it. The harderefforts you will make for getting sleep, the farther it will go. You just leave yourselfrelaxed in the bed, you do not know when you are overtaken by sleep. Similar is the case with meditation. You cannot let it happen by force. Youcannot force your mind to stop thinking. This is not possible. You can only preparethe background. On the basis of that background meditation will happen when it hasto happen. Thus, meditation is a happening, and in making this happen, breathing hasa vital role to play.Significance of Sound of Breathing Then what did we do today? We have now added sound of breathing to theprocess of concentrating on breathing. Now a question will crop up in the mind ofmany as to why did we add only sound of breathing? On the one hand, we say thatthere should be no incantation, no recitation, but we have added sound of breathing.Why? What was the necessity of adding it? Was breathing alone no sufficient? Ofcourse, breathing alone was sufficient. The addition of sound of breathing to it addspace to your progress. We shall move faster on the way. What is sound so²aham? Let us first try and understand its meaning? It is not aword, it is a sound. There is, of course, difference between sound and word. What is
  • 28. that difference? Sound is not a part of any language whereas any given word comesfrom one or the other language. For example, the bell rings. The sound that comesfrom the ringing of the bell is sound. However, if you want to put that sound in words,you will have to answer how does the bell ring? The answer will be²tan..nn..nn. Now,this tann....nn.. is a word. It is not a sound. There is difference between sound andword. If you speak tann...nn..nn, it is not like the sound of the bell. Is it? No. Still, ifyou want to express the sound of the bell in words, the word is tann...nn..nn. That isthe nearest possible word to convey the sound. That is why we have used this word.You will not use in its place the word dam...dam simply because it does not match atall with the sound of the bell. One thing is sure, there is difference between the soundof the bell and the nearest possible word we use to express it.SoahaŠ : Not a Word But Sound SoahaŠ is not a word. It is a sound. But where did this sound come from? Thissound has come from nowhere. It is present within you. As and when you breathe in,this sound šso› is already present within you. And as you breathe out, the sound ofšAhaŠ› is also within you. You may or may not do it, this is a continuous, eternalsound. Ad and when the breath goes in, the sound of šso› happens and as and whenthe breath goes out, the sound of šAhaŠ› happens. And this happens continuously. Now you will say, if this is ever happening, why is it not audible to us? We havenot heard this until now. We did sit with eyes closed several times, but we neverrealized this. The fact is that this sound is very subtle and we live in lot of hustle andbustle. It is as if you stand in a busy market and someone from back gives you a softcall. You will not hear this : it will not reach your ears. Then the same fellow criesloudly. You look back and recognize the person standing behind calling you.Noise Within and Without If there is much noise outside, the soft, subtle voice will not be audible to you.Similarly, this sound of šsoahaŠ› is happening within you, but we live amidst much ofa noise. There is a lot of noise in the outside world, but relatively this is not much. Itis rather small. Much more and in fact several times more noise is happening within ²the noise of ideas and of desires. How can you listen to that soft voice in thatmaddening noise? This is continuously happening inside but still we do not hear it.That is why we have added it to the breath from outside: we shall pronounce šso›while breathing in, but shall do so only in mind. And, we shall similarly say šahaŠ› aswe breathe out. What is the use of adding the sound from without? It helps us attune ourselveswith the sound within. We get attuned to it. And gradually as you continue with ourpractice, you will not then add the sound from without. You will get a spontaneousfeeling that as you breathe in, you listen to a sound of šso› and as you breathe out, asound of šahaŠ› is heard. This is all a matter of practice. With the passage of time andgradually after some more practice, you will be able to listen to this sound fromwithin even when you stop breathing for a while. This sound within is eternal,continuing for ever. That is why we have added this sound from without to thebreathing. We could have looked at the breath alone. Why this sound? Breath is subtleand still it is gross. More subtle than breath is this sound. And in this camp, we haveto move from the gross world to the subtle one.From Subtle to the Subtlest
  • 29. Speech is more subtle than body. Mind as well as the ideas within is more subtlethan the speech more subtle is consciousness which is indicative of the stage ofcomplete silence. Very subtle. More subtle than the subtlest. We cannot call it evensubtle : it is subtle and still it is not so. Thus, if we want to go to the subtle world, thissound helps us a lot. That is why we have added this sound of šsoahaŠ› withbreathing. Now some people might ask that they could have meditated by placing an imageof a deity before us instead of concentrating on breathing and that sound. Now, see,both breathing and sound of šsoahaŠ› are realities of the present moment. They arenot figment of imagination. In case, we had to concentrate on an image of God, whatwe might have to do? We shall have to imagine. None of us, neither you nor me, haveseen God. What does God look like? Does God have two hands or four hands? Shouldwe have an image of standing God or sitting God? Should God have eyes closed oropen? This is real problematic. One of you might say that my god is of blackcomplexion. The other can possibly say that his god is of a fair complexion. If onesays that his god has eyes closed, the other might say that his deity has eyes open. This will create a problem. But there is no problem in the case of breathing.Breathing is the same in the case of everybody of us. One may belong to anycommunity, any background, one may be a Hindu or a Muslim or a Christian, there isno difference at all in their breath : it is the same in the case of every one of them.Breathing is a universal phenomenon. There is no controversy about it. And, it is areality of the present. One does not have to imagine it. We need not to suppose thatwe are breathing in or out. There is no need for any imagination or supposition. Thisis a fact, a reality. It is present now. We breathe in and we breathe out. Similarly, one might say that there could have been another word in place ofšsoahaŠ›. In case we replace it by any other word, it would mean imposing it fromwithout. As for the word šsoahaŠ›, we can say that it is added from outside, but at thesame time we can also say that we do not add it from outside. In fact, this ishappening continuous- ly for ever within you. That is why we have added this tobreath because this also makes us realize the present.Conclusion I Hope you have understood by now as to why did we take breath for thispurpose and why did we add to it the sound of šsoahaŠ›. You might have learnt thatwe did so for a purpose. Now you are looking at the breath, you may please continuedoing so. As I have advised you, I shall request you please be careful of those things.You may breathe in a natural, spontaneous way and with that add the sound ofšsoahaŠ›, but this sound is within your mind, a silent one.Concluding Discussion Now we shall take up one or two questions and find answers to them. Somepeople say that the duration of the meditation should be lessened a bit. Now the fact ofthe matter is that when you are fed up with something you do not like doing it thetime seems to pass of quits slow. On the other hand, when you are interested in thething you are doing, the time seems to pass of quickly. Take one example : you arealone on a journey. How do you feel? How long the journey is. You have a jovialcompany on the same journey. Jokes and light conversation goes on. Time flies as yougossip about. Time seems to fly because your mind was interested in all that you were
  • 30. doing, you were involved in. Now how many of you feel that it was enough formeditation : please tell me with all seriousness and truth. Those who will say the truthwill ultimately learn something. Let me tell you that when it is the beginning of theend or death of mana, the feeling that overtakes you first of all is that of sadness, ofdespondency. If you feel like getting fed up, it implies that the process of the death ofyour mana has started. It is a fact that when mana begins to die, sadness begins to takeover. As it is, mana or mind lives on novelty. What does mind like the most?Something new. Take, for example, the food you like the most. Suppose you like thevegetable of ladyfinger the most. As you had for the second time, you did like it a lot,but not as much as the first time. When you had it for the third time, it was just ok. Ifyou are offered it once again, you might have it without much interest or taste. But ifit is offered once again, you will prefer to go away without taking food. However tasty a dish might be, you will enjoy it the best the first time you takeit, but gradually your taste in it will not remain the same. It will become less with thepassage of time. This is what has been called by Marshal the law of utility. Accordingto this, your interest in a thing declines with the passage of time. You do not like forever either the ladyfinger or the sweetmeats or the ice cream. There is nothing whichappeals to mind for ever. Mind aspires for something new. Take the example of a person you like a lot. You might feel like living with himfor ever. You will feel very good in his company for a day, for a few days, but aftersome days you will feel that it is enough now. But it is not possible in our life tochange everything. There are limita- tions in certain matters. But it is universalcharacteristic of mind that it is ever interested in something new. It ever aspires forsomething new. Now when you began meditating, there was nothing in it whichresembled with something new. You are breathing in and breathing out, and it is as ithas always been. It is the same breath, the same šsohaŠ›. That is why we feel that it isenough. You feel fed up.Mind Getting Fed Up : Mind’s Death In a way mind’s getting fed up is a good sign. It implies that the process of thedeath of mind has begun. First of all, mind gets fed up, and if it happens to passthrough this stage, it is sure to reach the stage of ecstasy. Am I right or not? During meditation, you breathe in and breathe out through thethroat, is it proper or not? No, you have to do nothing. As several of you had asked the question, how thebreath has to be taken in, where to concentrate on the breath ² when the breath is atthis or that place in the throat. No, you have to concentration all you attention on thetop of your nostrils. So you may do as you all have been asked to. You will not makeany changes of your own. Is it all right? Hope you all understand. šEverything is all right, but it will be better if quantity of food provided isincreased a little. Look, we feel quite hungry at night. It makes us feel uncomfortableduring the night. Thus, we cannot have good sleep. Your most devoted disciple.› Thisreads a slip written by one of the participants. Now the fact of the matter is that when you have nothing else to do, first of allthe mind will go to food. This is something very natural. Still if someone of you hasquite serious problem, he or she is welcome to see me. However, it does not mean that
  • 31. you come in a long queue for this very purpose. It will be no surprise if all of youmight get up to share the same problem. The fact is that the food being provided to you is enough for you. We havebecome habitual of eating much more than we need. Whatever you eat at home,perhaps only twenty-five per cent of that is enough for the body. The body does notneed more than that, and we should not eat that. At times you might have felt, thebelly is full, but mind still needs a bit more. Mind craves for more and more andmore. Still anybody with some serious discomfort is welcome to see me. šOne such camp should be organized in the jungle in our Rajasthan. And itshould last at least a fortnight. I shall feel delighted living in the forest.› So saysanother slip. Sure, if any of you wish that such camps should be organized at some particularplaces, such people should get in touch with me. I shall tell them as to what needs tobe done and how to proceed further.
  • 32. CHAPTER V THE ¶GAMIC BASIS OF DISCIPLINE FOR SELF-PURIFICATION The primary and basic discipline of „rama‡ic culture is the discovery of self, therealization of self, to become jina while looking at the nija or self. The reveredTÏratha×karas of the „rama‡ic tradition made their lives meaningful by going throughthis discipline.History of DhyÈna-SÈdhnÈ The fundamental characteristics of meditation available in the agama compiledby the poets during the pontificate of the 24th TÏratha×kara, Lord MahÈvÏra. Themethod of meditation continued to reach the masses through the ÈchÈrya tradition.Numerous desirous souls, the liberated beings acquired this from the GurÊ-Shishya(Teacher- Disciple) tradition. Having received answers to their basic questions, theystepped forward for transforming their self into an enlightened being. In this tradition,ÈchÈrya ¶tmÈ RÈm happened to be the first. He had been a highly enlightened personand a great sÈdhaka and meditator. This attempt of ours is an humble endeavour totake to the door- steps of each person the mission started by ¶chÈrya ¶tma RÈm. With the grace of the Lord and with the blessing of ¶chÈrya ¶tma RÈm, weacquired this primary and fundamental method of meditation (dhyÈna-sÈdhnÈ) whilemaking a self-study of the ¶chÈra×ga-SÊtra.¶gamic Basis of this Method There is said in the ¶chÈra×ga-SÊtra (1/1/2) that šthere are many souls, as hasbeen said in earlier SÊtras as well, who are absolutely unaware that their soul willtransmigrate in the form of some other being of some or the other species after leavingthis present body. Who was I before my present birth? What birth will I take after Ileave this body? What kind of being/specie will I be born into? At another place, the ¶chÈra×ga-SÊtra (1/1/3, 4) says hat such a soul šlearnseither through self-intuition or through the teachings of the TÏratha×karas or, fromsome other enlightened being that he came after wandering in the previous births inthis or that particular direction. He also gets to know that he is the same soul that hadbeen wandering in that/those direction/s. While making a special study of and reflection on this Sutra of the¶chÈr×ga-SÊtra, this mystery of the method of meditation got revealed to me. Thisspecial mystery is credited to the Gurus. On this issue, ¶chÈrya ¶tmÈ RÈm says that šthis soul has been wandering sincetime immemorial in the darkness of ignorance because it lacks knowledge and isloaded with j¤ÈnÈvar‡Ïya karma. It is suffering transmigration from one birth to theother in this world. However, as the soul becomes saturated with noble thoughts, getsinvolved in Right action, gives a new direction to its thinking and reflection and triesthrough meditation to tear asunder the veil of ignorance, j¤ÈnÈvar‡Ïya karma getseradicated as a result of all this. It creates within the soul a desire, an anxiety to knowits true form and nature. Ultimately, a day comes when it succeeds in realizing its true
  • 33. self. At that stage man comes to know answers to all the questions like who am I?where have I come from? etc.› The word sohaŠ literally means šI am He›. As already told, this knowledge canbe obtained only through three means-right knowledge or self-intuition (sanmati orswama- ti), explanation by others (parÈ­vyÈkara‡) and teachings of others(paretra-updesh). As a result of these, the jÏva or being gets the knowledge that thesoul migrating through matter or spirit, through beings in this or that direction hasbeen me or my soul. The word ‘s’ gives the meaning of wandering into east or otherdirections and the term ‘aham’ indicates the meaning of šI›. The word sohaŠ comesinto being only when we combine both the words, and it means that it is I who hasbeen wandering in different directions. This is the same feeling which the author ofthe SÊtra tries to convey when he says that if these two words/terms interchangeplaces and become one word/term, it can once again migrate through the world.However, he distinction between God (paramÈtmÈ) and the individual soul (jÏvÈtmÈ)will exist for ever. This the belief of the Vedas. The Jain philosophy has reflected on this notion indepen- dently. The Jainscholars have said emphatically that soul is neither a particle of the Divine nor is itentirely different from the supreme One. The soul has its own independent entity. Ithas the inherent potential to become the supreme One once it gets itself completelyfreed from the bondage of karma. That is why the Jain scholars have said in a veryclear language: ‘O soul! Thou art not thou, Thou art He.’ In other words, you are notmerely a soul meant to transmigrate in this world. But you can also become God aftercutting off the bondage of karma. Thus, thou shouldst see thyself in that form. That isthe only way of becoming ‘s’ from ‘ahaŠ’, of the penance for transformation of(individual) soul into the supreme soul. This can also be called a way to the thinking,reflection and meditation on ‘sohaŠ’. It is a belief in the Jain philosophy that every enlightened soul has the inherentpotential of becoming God. It can become God through right endeavour and properausterities. In the ¶gamic literature has been given a detailed description of meditationfor liberation. Innumerable means have been described for this discipline/penance. Amongthese means, the reflection on ‘sohaŠ’, its contemplation and meditation,understanding and reflecting on its meaning and incantation of mantras have alsobeen described. The reflection and concentration on ‘sohaŠ’ is the most brightlighthouse to show, to lightn for the seeker the path to self- realization. In its light, theseeker on his way to self-realization can easily recognize what helps him and whathinders him and what is to be adopted and what discarded. By virtue of thisknowledge, he gets rid of what is to be discarded and adopts what is helpful and thusmoves on the path to meditation and austerity. He ever moves further on by acceptingall those things which are helpful in leading an austere life. In this way, the seekerreflecting on the special feeling of soham in a proper method moves ahead. He continues to eradicate the jnÈnÈvara‡Ïya karmas (the karmas which serve asa sort of layer on j¤Èna or knowledge) and ultimately one day he achieves thejÈtismara‡j¤Èna or the knowledge that helps one know about one’s own previousbirths, avadhij¤Èna (theknowledge that helps one know about things that happened in the past, but for aspecific limited period only) or manaparyaj¤Èna or the knowledge that helps one
  • 34. know about the feelings in the minds of others. Thus after fully eradicating all thej¤ÈnÈvara‡Ïya karmas, he is able to attain the perfect knowledge, the kevalj¤Èna ordivine knowledge which has been inherent in his soul. With the help ofjÈtismara‡j¤Èna he can see the deeds constantly done in his previous innumerablebirths through his five doors of senses, and with the help of avadhij¤Èna andmanaparya- vj¤Èna, one can see the innumerable birhs and with the help ofkevalj¤Èna, one can see the innumerable births. He can also realize the new meaning.Thus, the meaning of ‘aham’ is ‘I am’ and of ‘sa’ is ‘I am he’. If we combine both the meanings, we reach the result that ‘He is what I am’ and‘I am what he is.’ This result makes us aware of the identity between ÈtmÈ andparmÈtmÈ, between the individual soul and the supreme Soul. In the given context,‘sa’ stands for those spiritual personages who have freed themselves from thebondage of all karma, those who have realized themselves and who have identifiedthemselves with the siddha. On the other hand, the word ‘aham’ indicates towards theworldly soul in bondage of karma. In relation to other aspects, both the souls are thesame, possessing the same qualities. The only difference between them is that onecategory comprises those who through the ideal meditation on right knowledge, rightfaith and right conduct have discarded all karmas and thus freed themselves of thetransmigration. In the second category of householder beings, the being are stillbounds in the karma and they are busy doing things in ignorance. In a word we can say that the siddhas are devoid of any karma. On the otherhand, the souls of worldly people are absorbed in karma. However, there is noessential or spiritual difference between the siddhas and the karma- engrossed beingsbecause it is their ÈtmÈ which develops into paramÈtmÈ. The latter is not somethingdifferent from the former. It has been the souls living their bodily existence in thisworld who by being active on the path of special meditation could raise themselves tothe status and position of paramÈtmÈ. Each soul has the inherent capability to reachthis state. However, only that soul reaches the status of the Supreme Soul which setsout on the path of meditation and discards the feelings of attachment and the bondageof karma. Each soul has the inherent capability to reach the position of siddha byreflecting on the right knowledge, right faith and right conduct. Thus, we reach the conclusion that there is no essential and fundamentaldifference between ‘sa’ and ‘ahaŠ’. Man becomes ‘sa’ only after growing from‘ahaŠ’. We can also say that it is ÈtmÈ (individual self) which by developing itsqualities transforms itself into paramÈtmÈ (Supreme Soul). Therefore, it has beensaid that I am not just me, rather I am he who is also He. In other words, essentially Iam not different from God.SohaŠ Meditation SohaŠ is the sound of our prȇas. This sound is ever occurring within ourprȇas. As and when we breathe in, the sound of ‘so’ takes place and when webreathe out, the sound of ‘ahaŠ’ takes place. There is a difference between sound and word. In practical life, we use thenearest possible word to express that sound. Similarly, there is difference between thesound of sohaŠ that occurs within our prȇas and the word sohaŠ. However, the wordsoham is the nearest possible words to express that sound. Thus, we make use of it.
  • 35. As we join the sound of sohaŠ with our breathing, our consciousness becomesmore subtle and we conveniently go beyond the ideas. Another meaning of the word ‘soham’ is the realized self-s means that and ahaŠmeans I or me: thus, sohaŠ means I am that. There is no essential difference betweenme and the realized selves. Another meaning that could be attributed to the word is‘all the souls are identical with me. None is different from me. I am in all and all areinherent within me. The day man realizes his own self he also realized at that time thatall beings are essentially like me. Of course, there is difference in body and sex whichis the result of our earlier karmas, but in spite of all these external differen- ces, allpossess the same essence like me.Fundamental Basis of this Theory to Live in the Present The past is a memory whereas the future is just an imagination. Leaving asidethis past and future, our medita- tion is to remain awake and conscious of the truth ofpresent of our life. This is the fundamental basis of our three-day meditation camp. Through the different yogic activities and through the medium of meditation andconcentration and thus enriching this method, man sets out on the path of peace andlove. When awareness of the present, the mental state of meditation, and love meettogether, the worshipper/camper feels blissful. To live that bliss every moment ofyour life and to know that is the integral part of this meditation.
  • 36. Meditation is Silence of Mind If we make a free rendering into English of what Acharya Amitgati Ji has said inthe Sri ParmÈnand-Pa¤ca- vi×shatikÈ, it would read as follows: ¶nandrÊp paramÈtmtattavam, samast sa×kalpavkal- pmuktam svabhÈvalÏnÈ nivsanti nityam jÈnÈti yogi svayameva tattvam Those spiritualists and realized ones get absorbed in the self, discard allallurements and attractions of the world and reside ever in that divine element whichis embodiment of bliss. The competent yogi perfectly and rightly knows this divineelement and experiences it with compassion, and they remain absorbed in their ownself. That divine element is free from all joys and sorrows, ups and downs, and isbliss-incarnate. Thus, the medium of meditation helps the desires, etc. of mind to calm down,and as they calm down, internal silence takes over. This silence is meditation. This isthe basis of our meditation. Another Jain scriptural text, Kayotsarg SÊtra, says: —hȇe‡a× mo×e×an jhȇe‡a× appa‡an vosirami —hȇe‡a× : stabilization of body mo‡e‡a‡ : stable speech jhȇe‡a× : to make mind/consciousness stable in meditation after taking it awayfrom all evil thoughts and then become stable in silence. We can also call it the meditation of trigupti. To keep mind, speech and body incomplete check is trigupti which is the heart, the life force of a muni or a Jain ascetic.Muni is one who live mauna or silence. Muni is one whose life is the practicalembodiment of mauna.Right Faith (Samyak Dar„an) The right faith is to know and feel something as it is, to possess spiritual visionof every human being, everything and every situation. Generally, we know a thingcontrary to what it actually is: in other words, our knowledge of a thing is not clear.This is called mithiÈ or untrue in Jain philosophy and in Vedic philosophy it has beencalled mÈyÈ or consciousness affected by joy and sorrow, favour and bias. A visiondevoid of any flaw and a mind/consciousness given to silent meditation sees the worldas it is. We also call it right vision (samyak drish—i). In fact, silence and meditationare experiencing right faith. Sudeva: A deva or god who is free from all joy and sorrow, favour and bias. Heis also called devadhidev or vÏtrÈgdev (which literally stand for the one beyond allfeelings and passions, but these are the epithets generally used for the tÏratha×kar). Sadguru: One who transcends all passions and feelings, who is the competentguide to show the right path. Saddharma : As manifested by those great mentors who have themselvestranscended all kinds of feelings and passions and which tells us how the karmiceffects serve as bondage and how that bondage of karmic effects can be broken.
  • 37. Only a man with the right vision can develop in his life a feeling of faith towardsthese three. Therefore, the primary thing is to feel and experience the right faith whichis both the basis and achievement of this three-day meditation camp we have beenorganizing.Self-Study and Meditation Lord Mahavira has taught us the ideal way of self-study and meditation for ourspiritual growth and for soul- or self-realization. The meaning of the word self-study should not be limited to our study of theSÊtras, rather we should through internal practices experience the essence of what hasbeen said in these Sutras and thus attain true knowledge of them. Self-study means theright kind of study, through the medium of browsing, of the contents of the ƒÈstrasincluding all the five kinds of medium. The right study, reflection, etc. of soul is alsocalled self-study. The Jain ¶gamas indicate towards the way to moksha or salvation throughinnumerable conceptual words like Samayak, Prayer, Equipoise, Fast, Silence,Control over body, mind and speech, Forgiveness, Friendship, anekÈnt- vÈda, givingup dinner, lessening of evils like wrath, lust, greeed, etc. Various theories ofmeditation have also been discussed. We experience all of them through the mediumof meditation.Purification of Soul The purification of soul implies purification of the self. The following aspects areincluded in the purification of the self: 1. Purification of Body: The body is purified with the help of various different ancient yogic practices. 2. Purification of Speech: The speech is purified with the practice of observing silence and controlling the speech. 3. Diet Purification: Your mind becomes the kind of food you eat. Purification of diet is taught through teaching and experiencing vegetarian sÈtvik food. 4. Purification of Prȇa: The prȇa is purified through the pranayama and different sounds. 5. Purification of Mind: The mind is purified of various flaws and evils through meditation and concentration; thus, mind experiences pure consciousness. Thus, it has been a complete, a perfect meditation. This involves overallpurification of the soul.Introduction Bliss is our nature. Peace is within us and we are the knowledge. Still why is man caught in the whirlpool of pain and evil? Still why has he beenovertaken by restlessness and violence? Still why has he been wandering in thedarkness of ignorance? The answer to all these questions is one and the same-distancefrom self. It is introduction with the self which brings the feeling of internal bliss, peace ofmind and health of body. For an introduction with the self, purification of the soul is
  • 38. necessary. The purification of soul means the purification of body, speech andthought. During these meditation camps, we work on all these three levels. Thus, this meditation is beyond body and mind.What is Meditation? The root of this meditation is inaction. What is the meditation of inaction? This isthe meditation of getting filled with joy even when doing nothing. This happensthrough the purification of soul. This is the meditation of the ancient yogis. Weexperience and make others experience this in a brief and subtle form through thesethree-day meditation camps. These camps are like filling ocean in an urn.Meditation and Life I have been doing research in the field of meditation and concentration for thelast about twenty or twenty-five years. I have, with the grace of Lord Mahavira andwith the blessings of the Acharya and my spiritual mentor, made use of my experienceand started holding meditation camps and also started giving training for suchmeditation camps to help mankind realize true religion and to meditate. In thesecamps, the participants experience the way of living life in a smooth, simple,tension-free way and to make life full of bliss. They also get rid of many incurablediseases which are increasing by the day in modern times. The camp participationadds to their work efficiency and brings cordiality in mutual relations. This helps theheart to be bigger by enabling man rise above rational considerations of mind, and theparticipants experience the feeling of sivamastu sarvajagat (the entire world is theform of Siva) or jÏvo ma×galam (welfare may come to each being). This brings aboutwelfare of the individual, of family and of the world at large. This helps man in hisoverall growth and makes the world happy. One experiences the feeling of a universalhuman religion.
  • 39. CHAPTER VIPRIMODRIAL FORM OF DHARMA It is very difficult to be unanimous on the issue of what dharma means. If I saythat water gets boiling hot at 100 degrees, everybody will agree with me. And, if I askif the sun gives light, all of you will reply in the affirmative. There will, of course, bedissenting voices if I try to define what religion means: there will be no unanimity. Itis difficult for all to agree on this. Why? Because many points of religion cannot beproved empirically. You cannot possibly give a concrete example of what religion islike. However, if you are willing to understand it, you can certainly do so. This canalso be experienced. However, it cannot be shown or proved in the empirical sense.This is so because religion is a matter of one’s inner world. Generally speaking, what is meant by religion for all of us? What do you think?What is religion, let me ask? First, you give your answers. The answers the campersgave were broadly as follows : ² religion is being merciful. ² religion is being firm in one’s commitment. ² religion is observing one’s duties conscientiously. ² religion is remembering the name of God. ² religion is not to harass anybody. ² religion is siding with truth. ² religion is purifying your mind. ² religion is love and mercy put together. ² religion means not to cause any pain to anybody. ² religion is helping the others. Where these answers are coming from? You may have read or heard all this. Forexample, you said that religion is having mercy, but on whom should this mercy beshown? We are going our way on a particular path. There come the beggars. Smallchildren, perhaps two or three or four children came begging. What does religion sayon this? Religion advises us to be merciful and give something in charity to thebeggar. On one such occasion, I was accompanied by a lay householder. He said tothe child-beggars : šAll right, you need money. Come with me. You will get work todo. If you do some work, you will get money and food and clothes.› They replied :šNo, we cannot go with you because we have to go elsewhere.› The fact is that theyare not interested in work, rather they are interested in begging, in getting moneywithout having to do anything. Will you call it mercy? It is very difficult to say withcertainty as to which act of ours is really merciful. It may seem mercy to you, but thisact of yours can also put the entire life of someone else on the wrong track. In thiscase, this will amount to spoiling the life of these young children. Their habits arebeing spoilt. What is mercy, then? It is quite difficult to define it precisely. What will you call religion? In fact, where all these answers come from. Fromdiscourses heard, from books read and from the knowledge acquired from the elderlyand the wise. The answers given by most of the people are either heard or read fromanywhere. This is what our parents taught us in our childhood. Give clothes to thenaked. Give food to the hungry. Serve the others. Now whatever we learnt in our
  • 40. formative years is religion to us. Do not kill anybody, rather try to save everybodyfrom any danger to life. Now someone learnt that the nature of a given thing is itsreligion. If we ask such a person as to which thing he referred to. What did he meanby nature? He does not know all this. This means you have heard all these answerfrom somewhere or someone. In fact, what is religion? What should we call religion? For example, a personsaid that whatever saves us from going to sin is religion. Everybody has his owndefinition. Someone might say ‘not to commit evil, not to kill anyone is religion.Saving someone is religion...’ Once upon a time there were two persons. A polemic started between the two.Both of them were great scholars. Discussion and discourse on the given issuecontinued. What was the subject matter of discussion? There stood a cow in front ofthem. That was about to die. The question at issue was to save it or not. One of themsaid, ‘If there is someone going to embrace death, he should be saved.’ The secondheld, ‘If we save the cow, it will need fodder; it might give birth to a small calf and soon. Who will take care of all that? So the cow should not be saved.’ The other is infavour of killing it, his ideas are bioethically closer to enthenasia. Now it is a fitquestion for polemic, and there is no end to it. We can also say that where there is a polemic, there is no religion. One who gotinvolved in polemic and went on insisting that ‘only saving the core is a religion,’this is no religion. The other fellow joined the polemic saying that religion comprisedonly in not saving the cow. This is also not religion. When we say this or thatcomprises religion, we are wrong. My brothers, if you feel like saving the cow, saveit. If you do not feel like doing it, do not save it. There is nothing polemic about it. There was once an ¶chÈrya in the Jain tradition and his name was ¶chÈrya AtmaRam. Once two persons reached him. Both of them were great scholars andknowledgeable about the ¶gam literature. One of them said, šSee, brother, once a manachieves liberation, he never again gets into the process of transmigration. The secondone was a Hindu. He said, šWhy won’t he? yadÈ yadÈ hÏ dharmasaya glÈnirbhavatÏbhÈrata : he will have to come back into this process of birth-death-rebirth, otherwisewho will save the world? As and when evil begins to dominate in the world, god takesbirth. In other words, the liberated souls also come back into the world. The first onedisagreed saying that this is not possible. No soul ever comes back after it got saved.The second held the first wrong. The polemic ensued. Examples were given from big,voluminous religious texts. One gave an instance. The matter reached suchseriousness that only physical fight remained. At last they agreed to call on the¶chÈrya because they knew the ¶chÈrya to be genuine spiritual teached, anenlightened being. They agreed that they would go to him and accept his verdictwhatsoever. Both of them reached him. One of them said, šLook, ¶chÈrya, once a sold gets liberated, it never comesback to this world, an I right?› The second said, šThe should will have to come. If it does not come, who willsave the world?› The ¶chÈrya replied, šSee, what you should do is to go the moksha or salvation.If you liked it, you could remain there and if you did not like it, you could come beck.
  • 41. Let us first attain salvation, the rest could be considered later. The matter ends there.There is no scope for any polemic. The enlightened persons always behave this way. They replace polemic withdialogue. šLet us first go to moksha. If you liked it, you could remain there, and if youdid not like it, you could come back. First, you should attain moksha. People do notknow how to attain moksha but they simply argue for polemic. This is thecharacteristic of an enlightened person and of religion. First, people think that religion implies rules and regulations for daily life, somecustoms and rituals. He who observes those rules and regulations of daily life andabides by those customes and rituals is a religious person. This is a general feelingamong the masses. Now, every community has its own rules and regula- tions for daily life, its owncode of social conduct and its own customs and rituals. Take for example those whofollow the Jain faith. As the paryusha‡ days (they comprise eight days and begin withBhÈdo× sudÏ 5) come, they must fast a lot, listen to the discourses by holy men anddo various such holy things, but as these days pass by, such activities will becomemore and more less. Almost similar is the case with those who follow the Hindu faith.They behave almost the same way when the month of Shravan (July-August) comes.In the case of the Muslims, the month of RamzÈn has special religious significance.The Christmas is of vital importance for the Christians. Thus, people belonging toeach different tradition have their days and months considered auspicious and setabout for religious practices and other rituals. If you ask a Jain the definition of religion, he might say that religion meansfasting observance of certain vows, performing SÈmÈyik (a king of worship abelieving Jain performs daily for some time) observing pratikrama‡ (to make ananalysis of past wrongs and feell repentent for them) etc. If the same question is put toa Hindu, he will limit religion to paying a daily visit to a temple and worshippingGod, worshipping this god on Monday and that god on Tuesday and so on. You askthe same question to a Muslim and he will confine it to saying namÈz daily, going ongaj to Mecca/Medina, etc. For a Christian, religion means visiting the Church, prayingand serving mankind. Now look at the intra²community situation. You can again take the example ofthe Jains. Some of them are called Mandir Margis, and to them religion means visitingthe mandir or temple daily and worship there. He who daily worships the deity isreligious. Among the Jains, there are sathÈnakvÈsÏs, and to them religion is limitedonly to visiting a sathÈnak, performing sÈmÈyik and listening to the discourses bysome holy men. Similarly, a person generally follows the same rules and code ofconduct prescribed by the community in which he happens to take birth. Let me askyou a question as to why have you become Jain and what might have been theprimary reason for your becoming Jain. I do not think you have any answer to suchquestions. The reasons simply is that our religion in later life is determined by ourbirth. There has been a negligible number of people who, on becoming else. If I ask aHindu as to how he happened to become a Hindu and if I ask a BrÈhmi‡ among theHindus as to how he happened to become a brahmin, the answer remains the same. Itis our birth in a particular family and the teachings of parents during our formativeyears which determine our future faith. During our childhood we accepted as rightwhatever we were taught by our parents. We had no sources to check whether they
  • 42. were actually right or not. Maybe, they were and maybe, they were not. But did youever try to find out the veracity of what they had said? This is a very subtle point. You feel that whatever you have been doing is the right thing. You feel sobecause you have been doing the same since childhood. Take the case of certainfamilies in the south of India which believe in offering sacrifice. For those born inthese families, religion means visiting the temple and offer a chicken or goat forsacrifice once a week. But you will not accept this as something religious. But why? Ifreligion constitutes of what you have been doing since your childhood days, then whatthey in the south have been doing is also religious. Now we will have to think as to onwhat basis we call ourselves religious. Are we religious only on the basis of what welearnt in our childhood days? Or, have we, through our understanding, reason and byseeing into our inner self, tried to see as to what religion is. This is a matter ofresearch. Ponder over this issue a little. Religion is a matter of research. Religion is not so simple and cheap that youinherit it as some property from your ancestors. Religion is one’s own discovery. Allthe TÏratha×kars of Jain faith were born in Kshatri families, and those days it was notthe religious obligation of the Kshatris to perform penance or austerities. Their dutywas to protect the kingdom, to expand the kingdom and to fight in the battle field.Had they also done what their forefather had been doing, they could never havebecome TÏratha×karas. They did something different from what their forefathers haddone. Do you realize this? Have you ever tried to discover for yourself as to whatreligion is? He who discovers becomes religious. He who does not discover cannotbecome religious. In case one happens to meet in childhood itself the true Guru and through hisgrace knowledge of the true religion, it is the result of the supreme pu‡ya. However,even in such cases, awakening of our own inner knowledge is a must. Everybody hasto discover it. Why did you become a Jain? Did you become a Jain when you were fifteen andyou got some inner enlightenment from within. Or, was it a matter of choice beforeyou at the age of twenty whether or not to become a Jain? Did some similar thinghappen? Then how did you happen to become a Jain? Naturally you are a born Jain.You are a Jain because you were born in a Jain family. You parents were Jain, andwhatever your parents taught you was inherited and learnt by you. You might havebeen a Hindu had you been born in a Hindu family. Similarly, had you been born insome other family, you might have belonged to another tradition. Whatever you weretaught, whatever lesson you were given when small, you followed those and youshaped yourself as such. So generally speaking religion for a common man meansrules and regulations covering daily life and other rites and customs. He who followsthem is religious and he who does not follow them is irreligious. As I have said earlier, a person who visit a temple daily will say that only aperson who visits the temple daily is religious. And if one does not go to temple, hewill be called an atheist and irreligious. The latter might be a true person andfollowing all ethical standards, but since he does not visit the temple, he is an atheist.It will be said of him that he is ever condemned. Similarly, some people fell thattelling the beads, undergoing fast is true religion. To such a person, he who tells thebeads and keeps fasts will seem quite religious. He be taken as following religiouspractices very scrupulously. But a person who does not follow these things will be
  • 43. taken as irreligious. He will be labelled as an atheist, one who never remembers God.He will, it will be so declared, sure go to hell. Such condemna- tion will beproclaimed for him because he does not follow those things which to some seem whatconstitutes religion. What is our measure of declaring one a theist or atheist? A personwho follows the daily prescribed rituals is a theist and he who does not follow them isan atheist. Now everybody has the different set of norms to be followed. All humans,belonging to different religious traditions, do not have the same set of norms andpractices to be followed. They have different sorts of practices and norms. Everyhuman being is born in a different social environment, in a different home and in adifferent family. He has his own parents. His home is as are his parents; similarly, hispractices were also determined by the kind of society, community he has been born in.We lay a lot of emphasis on these traditions and these practices and consider one whofollows them as theist. All others are far away from religion. You will come across quite a sizeable number of people who follow theseprescribed codes and rituals but still they are atheists. They strictly follow theprescribed practices. They remember God daily. They regularly undertake fasts,follow other vows participate in religious dialogue and perform samÈyik daily. Stillyou will find a lot of wrath, falsehood and pride in them and in their socialintercourse. You will daily come across many such people. I do not say here thatcodes and daily practices are not good, rather they are right in their own place.However, it will not be right to say that a man who daily perform the prescribedpractices is a really religious person. We cannot be cent percent sure that a personbecomes theist or atheist, religious or irreligious by perform or not performing thesepractices and rituals. I have seen many such people as have never remembered theName Divine nor have they ever performed the prescribed daily rituals and practicesbut they are quite at peace with themselves, they are in ecstasy, they have a smilingface and they have a lot of inner strength to pass through any period of pain andsuffering. What would you call such people? What category would you like to putthem in? Certainly you cannot say for sure that a person following the prescribedrituals will be religious/theist. Similarly, you cannot say with certainty that the onesnot following these daily rituals are irreligious/atheist. Prescribed daily rituals and practices are all right in their own place. However,they cannot be made to serve as the measure to declare one theist or atheist. It can bethe other way round also. One can be a religious or theist person and still not followthe given daily rituals and practices and one following these can still be irreligious oratheist. You cannot be sure. Let us understand this here that the daily rituals andpractices are not wrong, rather they are right in their own place, but they cannot betaken as the testing ground. Now we come to the second universal assumption. Generally we take religion tomean to have faith in a certain god and a certain guru and to wear a specific kind ofrobes. You think that if a person has faith in the same god you believe in, only then heis religious. In case the object of his faith is a different deity, he is irreligious oratheist. If we put it in the Jain idiom, such a person is defiled or lacking in faith. Hewho has absolutely no faith in religion or god is called defiled. I shall share with you arecent incident. Two gentlemen came to me and began the discussion. They asked methat it is generally said that one must not bow to any other god or deity except this one(Lord Mahavira). Even if one stands before another god/ deity with folded hands, heis a fallen man, a false one. There had been another fellow from Nepal wanting to see
  • 44. me. But he remained outside and did not meet me for several days. When I asked forthe reason, he replied that he was hesitant because I was putting up in a jain Sathanak(a place where the Jain ascetics, both male and female, come and stay at intervals).What was bad in my staying there, I asked. He admitted that his parents had taughthim that if he ever went to a Jain temple or Sathanak, he would have no place otherthan hell. He was a Hindu by faith and he had come from Nepal. And, his parents hadtaught him that hell will be his destiny if he ever went to a Jain temple or SathÈnak. Itis almost the same as the jains are taught that they will be affected by different or lackof faith. If they ever visited a Hindu temple or other holy place. Such a person willnever be able to cross the world ocean, it is said. Both the sides think as if the passageto hell goes beneath the religious place of the other side! You can see how people arebound. You ask a Muslim to go to a Hindu temple. It would seem as if a calamity hadbefallen him. People are bound to their respective traditional as goats or sheep are intheir enclosure. Such a pity that a person is taken as fallen if he merely visits areligious place belonging to another tradition. He who commits such blasphemy, he iseternally fallen with absolutely no chances of his ever getting saved. Yet eachtradition has faith in a god or deity and each has its own Guru. But the impressioncreated is that only my religion and my Guru are genuine , none else. The Christianssay that Christ is the only Saviour. Only he can save man. Do you find anythingwrong in it? I think we cannot call it wrong because people of different traditions sayalmost the same thing. It is not just Christians, the Hindus and the Jains also behavethe same way. The followers of each tradition boast that their religion is the best of alland all other are inferior to it. Not to speak of Hindus and Jains or of any two different religious traditions, letus see what is happening within jainism. They have faith in the same lord Mahavira.When a child takes birth in a family belonging to the SthÈnakavÈsÏ sect withinjainism, that child, as he grows up, will be advised against going to a Jain temple andperforming worship there because that will be a great sin. Even if he happens to visitsuch a temple and stands with folded hands before the image of Lord mahavira, hewill be fallen person! When I was sojourning through Chennai, a lady came to me.She used to visit me daily for a few days. Then she did not turn up for same days. Iasked the others the reason for the absence. I was told that she did not come because Iwas in that particular place which is a SathÈnaka and she belongs to the mandirmÈrgÏsect within jainism. The fellow told me: šWe are mandirmÈrgÏs and we have sincebirth been taught that if we ever visit a SathÈnaka, we shall suffer bondage. So we donot go to a SathÈnaka.› Now you will laugh at this, but look within what do you do?Everyone behaves almost the same way. This, of course, is a childish thought. Anoutsider will laugh at the Jains and wonder if they are the followers of Lord Mahavira.Maybe, if lord Mahavira himself happens to visit this each now, he might ask whetherwe would like to escort him to a SathÈnaka or a Mandir! And, if he visits aSathÈnaka, how should he sit there? Should he put on the covering on the mouth ornot, if yes, of bigger or smaller size? Lord Mahavira will be in a real dilemma. At lasthe might ask that he should like to depart leaving us as we are and that we might goon our different paths. What an interesting situation! The heart of the matter is that after the departure of Lord Mahavira, religion hadgradually become secondary and that sect or tradition has become primary and thatthere is nothing wrong in it. There is nothing wrong if you say that your sect ortradition is right, but you do not stop at this. You go on to say that only your sect or
  • 45. tradition is right. This causes polemic. If one wants to go to temple and worship, it iswell and good that he should do so. If he does not want to, he may not. It you sit witha coverlet on you mouth, it is well and good, but if you want to do sÈmÈyak withoutputting a coverlet on you mouth, even then it is all right. The only thing you have tosee is how your mind concentrates in meditation. Concentration of mind formeditation is the primary thing. How you transcend all jealousies and enmities andfriendships and develop a felling of fellowship for all is the primary thing. You shouldsee only how you can achieve the primary thing. You may achieve this either bybowing your head before a god or by telling the beads, either through meditation orprayer. This is what you must understand. This is for you to see how your mindreaches equipoise. Then you may remember god either by the name of mahavir or byany other name. Yes, you must give up anger and pride and greed. Whether you giveit up by remembering Lord Siva or any other deity. But you must give them up. Whatis in a name, as they say. You will come across tens of person by the name ofMahavira. It is not necessary that each one of them is the same kind of person. Aperson by the name of Mahavira can be a thief; he can be evil²incarnate. What willyou gain by remembering his name? There may be numerous persons by the name ofSive. It is not necessary that the person will be as good as his name signifies. A personnamed Garibdas can possess a huge mansion, and another person named harsukhlalcan possibly be residing in a hut. Similarly, a person by the name of Nayansukh canbe blind of eye and another by the name of Surdas can have bright eyes. Once again, Ishall say there is nothing in the name. You may remember any god, any deity and byany name, but you must concentrate your mind in meditation. This is the primarything. A young girl one day came to me and in a tone of confession said šI happened tocommit a cardinal sin today ass I visit ƒiva temple. I know it is sinful on my part.› Ipitied her and her parents who taught her so. A Hindu says that a visit to a Jain templepaves way to hell, and a Jain would say visiting a Hindu temple paves the way tohell. If you do son, the only way left for you is the one leading to hell. One may still understand this between Hindus and jain a they belong to twodifferent religious traditions, though I do not agree with this. Just have a look at theintra²community situation in Jain tradition. What will you say if the SathÈnakvÈsÏJains say that visiting a Jain temple is sinful and if a MandirmÈrgÏ says that visiting aSathÈnaka is sinful. Where will lord Mahavira go to if he happens to come to thisearth again to a Sathanak or a Mandir? If he goes to a SathÈnak, the mandirmÈrgÏJains will declare he is not Lord Mahavira because he went to the SathÈnaka. And, ifhe goes to the Mandir, the SathÈnakavÈsÏ Jains will wonder how can Lord MahÈvÏrago to a temple? The situation will be highly problematic for Lord Mahavira. Wherewill it be advisable for him to go? He may ultimately have to decide against going tothe either place and instead going back to heaven. We have been playing ridiculous games in the name of religious. It is like thegame of tip cat. If the stick fails to hit, you are out, and if it succeeds in hitting thenyou are in the game. So has become the case with religion. Had it been so easy athing, or had it been confined to a particular place, then it would have been desirableto take all the mankind to a single place of peity. This way all of us will becomereligious. But it is not so. One is advised to visit all religious places and you will findthat you come across both religious and irreligious people, the atheists and theists.You will find religious as well as irreligious people among the Hindus. Similarly,
  • 46. among the Jains also you will come across both kinds of people. You cannot say withcertainty that faith in a particular god will make man religious. It may happen and itmay not happen. Both the possibilities are there. The number of conflicts and controversies that have arisen in the name of godand Guru in India have been much more than anywhere else in the world. Thequestion that haunts us is whether my god is superior or yours? All this while wenever bother to remember or worship god. We may not experience in our life thepeace and love experienced by god, but we must create conflicts. This is my god, thatis your god. The final destination is the same, but you have made divisions of thatalso. This is mine and that is yours. If, ultimately, the court of law intervenes anddecrees that it is neither this man’s, but it is of the court. If the court puts its locks tothe doors of the temple, what will you then do? We have become conservative to theextent of foolishness in the matters of religion. Only God can save us! Each one isfirm in his resolve that only this is right and all else is wrong. Look at just only theSathanakvasi Jains. They are also divided into small sects. I once visited a small village. There were about twenty²five houses in thatvillage. Among them five are on one side and the other twenty on the other. The fivefamilies have faith in that sadhu who does not make use of the mike while giving hisdiscourse. Imagine just twenty²five houses and they too divided into five on one sideand the twenty on the other. Suppose another saints happens to be there, I am sureanother five families will adopt him as their patron. Where will we stop at the end?This is the ridiculous game we are playing in the name of religion. It is a tip cat gamein the name of religion. We are divided into my group and your group. Divisionamong political parties like the B.J.P. and the Congress is all right because theirfollowers openly say so. Now we find groupism even in religion. There should be nodiscrimination or prejudices in religion, but we find them there. Division is wherelove should prevail. Groupism prevails where co²existence and co²operation shouldhave been. Now what is the meaning of the word ‘religion’. When language changes, themeanings of words also change. What would have been the connotation of the word‘religion’ when it was first used about 2500²3000 years ago. In PrÈkrit language, theword is dhamma and in Hindi it became dharma (it is only in its modern usage thatwe translate the word into English as religion). In the original, it is dhamma. As I toldyou a little earlier, the primordial nature of water is coolness and the nature of sun isto provide light. The original nature of earth is to cultivate, to imbibe. In other words,the nature of a thing implies its primordial state. Now in modern times the usage ofthe word nature has changed. What meanings we impute to the word nature today?Our usage, for example, is: He has a nice tempera- ment or he has a quarrelsometemperament or nature. So what meanings we input to the word nature? Behaviour,the manner of social intercourse. That is what we call nature or temperament.However, in olden times, nature or temperament implied primordial state. This latterwas called nature. When we have to convey that the original state of water is coolness,we shall now say that the primordial nature of water is coolness. When we have to saythat the primordial state of fire is hot, we say that the original nature of fire is heat. Ifwe have to say that the original state of the sun is to get illuminated and to providelight, we say that the nature of sun is to get illumined and to give light, Now the othername for this nature had been religion. Nature and religion were almost synonymouswords. In other words, in olden times if we had to say that the nature of water is
  • 47. coolness, this could be conveyed by saying that the water’s dharma is coolness. If wehad to say that the nature of sun is to get illumined and to illumine, this could beexpressed by saying that the sun’s dharma is also as such. Both the words, natureand dharma, were synonymous. However, with the changes in the language, themeanings have also changed; now dharma or religion stands for a separate religioustradition, and nature has become synonymous with behaviour. Meanings of bothdharma and nature have undergone a change. However, both these stood forprimordial nature. In a way, the primordial state of your consciousness is yourreligion. Now what is the primordial nature of your consciousness? The original orprimordial nature means that nature for which no external or conscious effort isrequired. For example, we have to heat up water. For this we will have to make an effort.If we make absolutely no effort, the water will be cold, Similarly, if you give up allefforts ² efforts of body, mind and speech ² what would you feel within? Peace ornon²peace (restlessness/conflict)? Obviously, peace. What do you feel³happiness orsadness? Obviously, happiness. So this peace, happiness and consciousness is thenature, the religion. You take the case of any tradition. Everybody will agree withthis. No religious tradition would say that man should not be at peace or happy. TheHindus, the Jains, the SathÈnakvÈsÏ, the MandirmÈrgÏ all say that man mustexperience peace within. None of them says that man should be sad. All of them saythat man should be happy and that he should be conscious. None talks of man’sremaining unconscious. So peace, happiness and consciousness is satchitanand andthis is religion. To arrive at this is a characteristic of a religious man. Now which path do you choose to arrive at this destination is your choice. Someprefer the path of worship. Let them worship. If another favour telling the beads toworship, let him tell the beads. Another might prefer praying, let him pray. Ifsomeone wants to meditate, let him meditate. Arrive at this destination through thepath you like. Reach the state of satchitanand. I have told you the path that I knew,i.e., which I learnt from my spiritual gurÊs. We know the path and are aware thatmeditation is the way. Of course, meditation is not the only way, rather there aremany more paths as well. Meditation is one of those paths. As we have seenmeditation is a very simple and easy way. It has no complications. If you worship,there will be several complications. What way to do it? Should it be done this way orthat way? There is no such complication in meditation. You have to do nothing. Justsit still and relaxed. Close the eyes. Shut the mouth. Keep the body still. Thus, yourmind is there. Look, for how many years you have been doing all that you have done.What did you achieve? Now you have to discipline the mind and meditate only forthree days. Look, what have you achieved? Do you feel the difference? Now thechoice is in your hands. Now I have shown you the way that was known to me. And I know, if you moveon this path, you will sure feel the change in your life. Go on practising for six monthswhat I have taught you here. There will certainly be a change. Let it be anybody, fromany tradition. Do it for six months what you have failed to get in the last fifty years. Ican say with certainty that this has happened with millions of people. I do not say thisfrom any bookish knowledge. I have experienced it myself. It really happens. I haveknown many people around me and the kind of life they led. I also know the changein their life and how they live now. It is not a very long period. Not that you have toperform austerities for say fifteen or twelve years. Just two or four or a the most six
  • 48. months. And you will find the change in life. Of course, this does not mean that youwill do it only for six month and then give it up. It is not to be that way. It will have tobe continued, but you will feel the change within six months. Even the period of sixmonths is also a bit too much. You will feel within just a fortnight that the life haschanged a lot. And during all this, there has been no discussion either on God or onthe religious preceptor. You may have faith in the deity you want to, you may havefaith in the preceptor you want to, but you must meditate. You may first pay respect toyour preceptor because all the spiritual preceptors of the world are really greatpersons. None of them is smaller or inferior to the other. All of them are equally great.All deities are also supreme.
  • 49. CHAPTER VII PRIMORDIAL FORM OF DHARMA (II) The incantation of a mantra is good, but the mere incantation of a mantra willnecessarily make man religious is not sure. You cannot say this with hundred per centcertainty. A person who does not recite a mantra cannot be religious, you cannot evensay this. There is nothing bad in a mantra, but religion is not confined to a mantra;similarly, it is not that a person reciting a mantra became religious and not reciting amantra became irreligious or atheist. People feel that religion means a particular kind of robes, a given set of rites andrituals and the observance of certain other prescribed things. Of course, every kind ofdress has its own significance. Each has its own effect. However, it is not necessarythat you will become religious just by changing your robes. There are quite a manypeople who have failed to become religious even after changing their garb. At thesame time there are many who have become religious even without changing theirdress. Thus, there are different conceptions about religion. As I said earlier, somepeople hold that religion means a set of rituals and ceremonies. The secondconception is that religion implies belief in a particular deity and a certain spiritualpreceptor. The third conception is that religion means incantation of a particularmantra. The fourth conception is that religion comprises a particular dress orfollowing a given tradition. All these things are right in their own place, but none ofthem in itself constitutes the whole religion. They all are small parts of religion. Theyare like the seed sown in the earth, which is then watered, provided fertilizer, and thengiven sunlight and air. The seed will sprout and grow only after getting all these andthen transform itself into a plant. Gradually that plant will blossom and theseblossoms will give out fragrance. Religion is like that fragrance. All the things likesowing the seed, watering, providing fertilizer, and giving sunlight and wind, etc. arelike the rules and regulations, rituals and practices, remembering God, recitation, faithin the spiritual preceptor and a prescribed kind of robes. All these are small things. They can and cannot be meaningful. You may take itas if you had sown the seed in the earth. Now it is not necessary that it will developthrough all the stages to bloom and give out fragrance. It is just possible that the seedis dead or defective or it may not bloom. On your part, you watered it all right, but itis not sure that it will blossom into flowers. After all your efforts, the seed may sproutinto a plant or it may not. The same is with religion. It is not necessary for one tobecome religious even after performing all the rites and rituals. At the same time,there is no such condition that one cannot become religious. Religion is the fragrance of that flower in bloom. It is just possible that you mayor may not get the fragrance even after doing all this because the seed has to gothrough a long journey to reach the stage of fragrance. What is religion? Just a little while ago, someone had given a very beautifulanswer that the nature of a thing is its religion. This has been, no doubt, a classicalanswer. However, I feel that even he who gave this answer does not fully know themeaning of his answer. He seems to have either heard of this and read about thisanswer.
  • 50. The meaning of the word dharma was entirely different about 2500-3000 yearsago. The language of that era was entirely different. PrÈkrit was the language ofcommon usage. Sanskrit was also popular. However, these days Hindi and English arepopular languages. What difference does it make? We have absorbed as such thewords of Sanskrit and Prakrit in Hindi and Gujarati languages. It meant that althoughthe words remained the same, the meanings changed. I was in Rajasthan. One day a lady asked the other: šWhat is the tame [time]?› Ifelt wonder struck listening to the word ‘tame’ coming from her lips. It was a littlelater that I could follow that she was asking for time. The word ‘time’ got adapted into‘tame’. Maybe after say fifty years from now, this word will become classical inMarwari language. Then, tame would mean time. People by then might forget that theword tame is the corrupt from of time. Somewhat same thing has happened with our PrÈkrit and Sanskrit words. Wehave adopted them in Hindi as such. One such word is dharma. The word actuallywas dhamma. The word dhamma gradually got adapted into dharma. At that time, theword dhamma meant dharma. A Jain SÊtra says-dharma is what the swabhÈv is. What is the meaning of theword swabhÈv? These days we give the word a meaning which was not given inearlier times. Today we imply nature by this word. For example, we say that he is aman of quarrelsome nature or of a very sweet or amiable nature. Thus, in themodern-day idiom the meaning of the word swabhÈv has been taken as one’sbehaviour or character. However, about 2500-3000 years ago during the age of LordMahÈvÏra and Gautama Buddha, when the word swabhÈv was used, it was used as asynonym of dharma. Wherever the word dharma was to be used, they used the wordswabhÈv. For example, if they had to say that the ‘nature’ of water is cold, they wouldsay the dharma of water is cold. Thus, during those days the meaning of swabhÈv was bhÈv of swa. In otherwords, this meant the primordial state, or that state to bring about which we have tomake no external or conscious effort. For example, if the water is to be heated, weshall have to burn fire for the purpose or will have to make some other endeavour. Butif the water is to be cooled down, what shall we have to do? Of course, we shall haveto do nothing. Why? It is so because the cooleth is the nature of water. This is hisprimordial nature. To take it to its original or primordial state, we need not make anyeffort. We can also say that the word swabhÈv means primordial nature. This is thenature which is present of its own. We need not make any conscious effort to bring itabout. For example, the nature of sun is to give light. It has to make no consciousendeavour to do so. In other words, the meaning of the word swabhÈv is that state tobring about which we shall have to make no external effort. Thus, the swabhÈv iswhat is bhÈv of swa. We can also define the word swabhÈv in another different way. SwabhÈv is whatis ever existent. If you heat up water, it will not remain hot for ever. It will remain hotonly so long as it is nearer to fire. As soon as the fire dies out or is taken away, it willstart cooling down and soon it will come to its primordial state-cool. And, if we haveto keep the water cool, we shall have to do nothing for this. It will remain cool forever. So the word means the original or primordial state to bring which no consciouseffort is required and which is inherent and which remains for ever.
  • 51. Dharma implies swabhÈv. At that time about 2500- 3000 years ago, both thesewords were synonymous. However, gradually, meanings of both these words gotchanged. Religion came to mean a particular tradition, rituals and practices, code ofconduct, etc., and swabhÈv came to mean behaviour or character. Look, how thechange has taken place with the passage of time. Thus, it is very difficult for us tofully comprehend what the Lord said because the Lord had given discourses in thelanguage of those days. Nowadays we have with us the words used in those days buttheir context and meaning have changed. We lack the insight and context in which theLord had used these words. We try to explain the word from the Agams with our owninsight and that is why sometimes the meaning is completely distorted.What is our Nature? Now we shall see as to what is our nature like. And, what is our original state?When your body is completely and absolutely inactive and inert, when your speech issilent and when even your mind is in a state of contemplation or, in other words, whenall the three yogas of yours are in order, what do you then feel? Is it a feeling of peaceor restlessness, of joy or sorrow? No doubt, you will experience a feeling of joy andpeace because that is your innate nature. That joy and peace has been born from yourinner self. At such a moment you are in accordance with your nature, your religion.On the contrary, whenever you are restless or sad, you are against your nature, awayfrom your nature.Universal Religion Now let it be any human being, he may have been born in a Jain or Hindu family,in a family having faith in the Sthanakvasi or Mandirvasi sect among the Jain ascetics,he may have been born in Surat or in Bombay, in India or in the United States ofAmerica. Can any or all of these factors bring about a change in his nature? Can thenature of water be changed with the change in environment. It is not possible that thenature of water in America is cool and that in India it is hot. Is such a thing possible?The nature of water will be the same throughout the different parts of the world.Similarly, man may go anywhere, to any part of the world, his nature will be thesame. And, the nature of man is peace and bliss and consciousness. When all thesethree factors are together, it is nature. Whenever you possess these three, you are inpeace, you are in bliss and you are perfectly conscious. And at that time you are indharma. As soon as one of these three goes missing, you will find that either you arein peace but you are not fully conscious or if you are fully conscious, you are not inpeace. In such a situation, you will go to adharma. Sometimes it so happens that you are in peace and conscious, but you are notblissful. In that case, that peace and consciousness will be full of sadness. Dharmameans where all these three are present-peace, bliss and conscious- ness. Take the example of any great personage, of any holy man, of any spiritualpreceptor. You will find these three things ever present in them. Such people will bein peace, in bliss and in consciousness. As these three increase in one’s life, dharmawill increase in the same proportion. Similarly, as they decrease, dharma will decreasein the same proportion. Thus, peace, bliss and consciousness is your swabhÈv ornature. Satchitanand is your swabhÈv and this is your dharma. You have done and you have still been doing sÈdhnÈ or meditation on peace,bliss and consciousness. In fact, this is the real meditation on dharma, meditation to
  • 52. go back to dharma. On the face of it, it seems there is no Divine name involved in it,there is no prayer in it, there is no mantra for incantation, there is no worship of anidol or deity. What kind of dharma is it? We shall not ask you to repeat or recite thename of God or look at an image of the Divine. On the other hand, we shall ask you tobecome like God because God is not anywhere outside, rather you are yourself God.But you have forgotten the God inside because you have been made unconscious bythe feelings of wrath, ego, desire, etc. When you will give up these three feelings ofwrath, ego and desire, you will go back to your nature of peace, bliss andconsciousness. As such, you will meet God within. Lord Mahavira during long austerities of twelve-and- a-half years did only twothings-dhyÈna or disciplining the mind and KÈyotsarga. Just now someone had put aquestion: did Lord Mahavira also go through the practice of blowing the conch? I hadsaid: Brother, the Lord did not have the need to do that. Think of the differencebetween your body and that of the Lord. In the opening „loka of the BhaktÈmarStotra a eulogy has been sung of the body of the Lord. Even the gods bow beforeLord MahÈvÏra to pay him obeisance. The effulgence of the nails of MahÈvÏra’s feetis more than that of the gems studded in the crowns of these gods. If the nails of feetof one are so shining that the shine of even the gems in the crowns of gods gets fadesin comparison, how beautiful his remaining body will be. You can easily imagine this.A person so beautiful and so pious need not perform all these rituals. His diet andbehaviour were completely balanced. Now both your diet and behaviour are imbalanced. You have never reflectedupon the questions as to what you should eat, when you should eat and at whatintervals you should eat. You live only in two conditions-either you are eating or youare getting ready to eat. It is not proper at all to compare your own body with the bodyof Lord MahÈvÏra. The age of MahÈvÏra was different. And the modern age isentirely different. You can take the times just sixty or seventy years back. The age ofyour father or of grandfather was different from what you live in. There has been a lotof difference between the dietary habits and environment of these two ages. In thetimes sixty or seventy years ago, food was taken only two times a day. How manytimes do you eat these days? You take food at least three times a day-breakfast in themorning, lunch at noon- time and dinner in the evening. This is the normal dietarypractice. One never knows how much one eats during the day apart from these threemeals. Once a lady came to see me. She said, šMahÈrÈj! I do not feel the hunger. I eatvery little, but still I never feel the urge to eat.› I listened to her. What should have I told her? As the lady had left, a person whohad been her guest the previous day told me about the reason for her not feeling thehunger. He threw light on her dietary habits. He told me that the lady takes herbreakfast soon after getting up in the morning. And this breakfast comprises at leasttwo to four hot, steaming parȇ—hÈs, with a little of jalebÏ and a glass full of milk. Itis still morning and it is just a small breakfast. As they say, it is necessary that yourbelly is full once you get started for the day’s work. At around ten, she would take herfood including some bananas, apples, etc. Then she would busy herself in preparinglunch. Her lunch consists of just 3-4 loaves of bread with 2-3 well-cooked vegetables,a bit of rice and a glass of lassÏ to go with at the end. In fact, before getting up fromthe dining table, it is obligatory to take some sweet dish. Otherwise, how will thethroat be clear? Anyway, she finishes her lunch with this much only. Of course, she
  • 53. never has the urge to eat and in this situation how can one eat more than that. After abrief siesta or some little work, it is afternoon and it is not the time to eat much. Butyou cannot make your body work until it is fed with something. Keeping this mind,the lady has to take her afternoon snacks around this time. These snacks do notinclude much-just a glass of milk, a little bit of fruit, one or two kachaurÏs, or somesuch thing. It is evening time when she must visit the market to purchase freshvegetables or other provisions. Now when you are in the market place, it is not muchif you take a glass of juice or such other thing. In fact, juice is said to increase yourappetite. Thus, a glass of juice is a must for this lady. Walking down the market, youmay come across some old or current friends of yours. There is no harm if you stopwith your friend have a refreshing drink or snacks with him. The other friendotherwise might feel bad. Two friends can sit together for a while and eat a bit. Howcan one eat more, especially the persons like the lady who have the ailment of badappetite. Then one must have dinner in the evening because it is meal time. How longcan one survive if you do not take anything for dinner. How will you go to sleep? Sothe dinner comprises a few loaves, with some vegetables and rice. And when thewhole family sits for gossip or some such thing together at night, generally a glass ofmilk for everyone is usual. Still we do not eat much, but take only a little because wesuffer from bad appetite. Now I could understand the reason for the lady’s bad appetite. You can onlylaugh at her. But I shall suggest that everyone gives a look back at his/her own day’sroutine. Was your routine not somewhat like that? Most of the rich people go throughalmost the same kind of routine. Then I shall have to say that you must have anotherglass of water and must undergo another set of exercises. Nobody knows how manytimes you eat and what you eat! You can well imagine the consequence if diesel is put in a motor meant to run onpetrol. And what will be the consequence if kerosene oil is added in an engine meantto run on diesel? Will the engine/motor start? Will it move? No, only the engine willget stuck. And, put dirty water in a motor which otherwise runs on kerosene oil. It willstop altogether. However, if the motor starts running even on dirty water, what willyou do? Will you call it a miracle? In fact, we all are one such miracle. How are wealive so far is perhaps the greatest miracle. The way we eat we should have died muchearlier by now-the way you eat, the amount of food you take, the number of times youeat may it be day or night. No restrictions, no rules are there to check you. It is, say, 2o’clock at night and you have to recite the Nava×kÈr mantra at night. You must havesomething to drink and eat before that. Otherwise, how will you recite? The kitchencontinues to function throughout the night since it is the continuous recitation of themantra. If you do not have a cup of tea, you may feel sleepy. This is the situation youare in. You are living in extreme need of food, perhaps you live for food. You neverthink of what you are devouring in the name of food and in what quantity. Still youare alive. I see this as a great miracle. Whatever we do here is to take the body and the mind to its primordial nature.This camp has been so designed as to bring back our body and mind to their balancedstate from the way we live, the kind of life we live in this modern age. Today you might think of four or five thousand years earlier when no suchcamps were organized. This is right. Possibly, no such camps were then held. Thatwas a different age. The traditions and expectations were different then. During thosedays if you had to learn how to discipline mind and how to meditate, you had to go to
  • 54. a spiritual mentor. You had to live under his guidance for an year or two or even fortwelve years. Then they taught such things. Times have changed now. Modern man isshort of time. If I say that you put up with me for an year and only then I will teachyou how to meditate and how to discipline the mind, there will be only one or twopersons who might opt for this during a period of thirty years. Therefore, we havedesigned the camp in keeping with the requirements of the age. No such camps wereheld earlier. Perhaps they were not required then.Two Forms of Religion There are two forms of religion-deterministic and behavioural. The former isever unchangeable: it had the same form in the past, it is the same in the present andshall remain so even in future. The deterministic form of religion is returning to theinherent nature and become stable in bliss, peace and consciousness. On the otherhand, the behavioural form of religion is always subject to change. The behaviouralform implies the outer form. This is constantly changing. Its form is as is the form ofthe society. Imagine, you have a guest at your home. Let us suppose the guest is a richbusinessman. You offer him a seat on the sofa to sit in so as to converse with him,listen to him and you are always anxious to put forward your opinion before him. Onthe contrary, if some poor person happens to visit you, you listen to what he has cometo say while he stands on the threshold. You behave with the person as per his socialstatus. It does not indicate that your enmity with or prejudice against such a person.You know that if you make the rich man sit outside on the bench, he might getannoyed and go back without listening to whatever you might try to say. It isnecessary to make him sit on a cushioned seat so as to put your ideas to his ears. Yourbehaviour, your words coincide with the kind of visitor. Your behaviour differs in thecontext of two such persons. You change your behaviour in keeping with thesituation. This is behavioural truth. It is surely not that you want to honour the richman and insult or humiliate the poor. On the contrary, it is just possible that you havemore affection in your heart for the poor. But in keeping with the demands of thebehavioural efficiency, you behave differently with two different persons. Let me illustrate a little more the idea of the behavioural form. Your grandfatherwas used to wearing dhotÏ and turban. But what do you wear today? If the modernyouth goes to the market wearing a dhotÏ and turban, people will look at him as astrange fellow. Or they might take him to be a BrÈhmi‡ going for some ceremonialworship. Just as human dress changes with the changing times, the behavioural formof religion also changes with the passage of time. But its essential form alwaysremains the same. Non-violence, contentment, austerities-they are all there. But howto adopt these values in life? We shall have to change the method of adopting them.Only then will you understand that, otherwise you may not. If I say that since Sanskrit is the best language, therefore, I shall speak only inSanskrit, but how many among the audience will understand the ideas that I mightconvey? I will have to use the language which everybody among the audience canunderstand. If I insist that there must at least be five to ten thousand listeners to myspeech and at the same time I also insist that while addressing them I shall not makeuse of the mike. This will be improper behaviour on my part. How many of them willbe able to listen to my voice? If I say that even if the number of my audience is fiftyor hundred it is all right with me. Then my insistence on not using the mike is
  • 55. understandable. In fact, there is no need of mike for an audience of say fifty, but ifyou have an audience of five to fifteen thousand, you must make use of the mike. Ifyou must not make use of the mike, then give up the expectation that your audienceshould swell into thousands. In that case your attitude should be that any number ofaudience is acceptable. To make or not to make use of mike to address an audience is the behaviouralform of religion. It is not that you will become irreligious if you make use of the mikeor that you will become more religious if you do not make use of it. As I said,behavioural form of religion is subject to change. It continues to change. On the otherhand, deterministic form of religion is static in all times, past present and future. Onewho observes this form is certainly a religious person and one who does not iscertainly an irreligious or defiled person.Religion and Meditation Camps In this camp, we tried to reach religion through different ways. First of all, weexercised to sit still. One may ask why sitting still is so important. If you continue tostir or move, can we not concentrate or meditate? Of course, yes, we can concentrateand meditate while we are not still. Think of those who have never meditated earlierin life. For such people, it will be quite difficult to reach a state of actionlessnesswhile still active. As you might have experienced, our body and mind are quiteclosely inter- connected. Whenever there takes place a change in the body, it leaves itseffect on the mind as well. Similarly, whenever a change occurs in mind, it has itseffects on the body as well. When you have headache, or pain in the foot, can yourmind be in peace? No, that cannot be. When we are carrying a burden on the mind orwhen we are mentally restless, can body feel the peace? No, certainly no. Body andmind are closely connected with each other. Therefore, when you keep the body still,it helps in keeping the mind also still and stable. Thus, the first stage of meditation isto sit with a still body. Somebody had questioned if you cannot meditate while lying down. Of course,one can meditate this way as well. Sitting is not a mandatory posture for meditating.You can meditate even while standing. You can meditate even while lying down.However, the point worth consideration here is that you feel drowsy even while sittingand it will be quite easy for sleep to overtake you while you are lying down. Yourone-hour meditation will get extended to 4-5 hours. You will never know in whichmeditation you were lost for these hours. You will easily fall asleep. In fact, there isevery possibility of your falling asleep if you try to meditate lying down. Sleep andmeditation are two opposite extremes. You will enjoy sleep while trying to liveconsciousness. All our plans will go topsy turvy. There is no doubt that one can meditate while lying down. But so far theconsciousness of your mind is not that strong and deep. You are not yet so prepared asto keep your mind conscious while still lying down. Thus, it is necessary to sit as youmeditate.Benefits of Sitting Straight The second thing that I said was that you back and neck should be straight. Thereare numerous benefits of sitting straight. At the same time, there are as manydrawbacks of sitting in a bending posture. When you continue to sit bent down, youbegin to feel tired and sleepy. On the contrary, if you sit straight, you keep fresh. You
  • 56. must remember that half of the maladies our bodies suffer from are caused by thisdefective sitting posture-bending down. The freshness and youthfulness of your bodywill last long if you continue to sit straight. However, if you continue to sit in a bentdown posture, you will get old earlier than usual. Getting old means early loss offreshness and alertness. Generally, people find it very difficult to sit straight. Why is it so? Simplybecause people have become habitual of sitting in a bent down posture. Thus, sittingstraight seems difficult and painful to them. However, it is more natural, very naturalto sit straight. It is also necessary to keep the eyes closed while meditating because the eyesconnect us with the outside world. As soon as we close our eyes, our connection withthe empirical world is broken.Importance of Breathing In meditation, we fix our mind/consciousness on the pace of breathing. As wedid during the meditation, breathe in deeply and then breathe out and repeat it twice orthrice. What does deep breathing do? In fact, deep breathing acts like the speedbreaker. Just as a motor moving at a fast speed on a road will have to slow down asthe speed breaker approaches. Slowing down means lowering the speed. Similarly, adeep breath lowers the pace of your mind. Thereafter we began to look at the natural breathing. What happens when welook at the natural breathing? Why did we choose breathing for this? We could havereplaced breathing with some mantra or the painting of a god or some other deity. Wechose breathing because it connects us with the present moment. Another beautifulthing about breathing is that whatever you might do you cannot look at the breathgone by ten minutes ago. Similarly, you cannot look at the breath you will take tenminutes hence. You can see only the breath which is present. Breathing connects you with the present. When you began seeing the breathing,your thoughts automatically got lessened. I did not ask you to put a check on yourthoughts. I had directed you only to look at the breathing. You began seeing it andyour thoughts calmed down automatically. There are two doors for the thoughts tosprout. Either they come from the past or from the future, but breathing is in thepresent moment. Connecting with the present closes the doors to past and future andyour mind moves towards thoughtlessness. Looking at the breathing calms down your thoughts automatically. Had youinstead looked at the painting of a deity or performed the incantation of a mantra,your mind might have got absorbed in that as well. However, incanta- tion of amantra or remembrance of Divine name is also a thought in itself. And, we have tomove from thought to thoughtlessness, from idea to non-idea, from desire todesirelessness, from action to action- lessness and from activity to non-activity. Forthat we shall have to look at something which takes us to actionlessness, inactivity,thoughtlessness.Meditation on Thoughtlessness/Inaction If you are repeating the name of God or reciting a mantra, this is also an action.This is an activity to be done by mind. If you are performing an activity, how can youmove towards inactivity? A cursory glance shows breathing to be an activity, but it is
  • 57. not activity. For example, a man gets unconscious. Can he take his food? Of course,not. He cannot drink water even. However, an unconscious person breathes in and out.Breathing is an activity that goes on of its own. It goes on without any consciouseffort on our part. Breathing continues even if we are conscious and in deep slumber. As we bind our mind with breathing, the mind becomes through-free,consciousness becomes void. The state of mind and consciousness turning thoughtlessand void is the highest attainment of meditation. It is the highest state of pure orhighest form of meditation.
  • 58. CHAPTER VIII RECOGNIZING THE TRUE GURÉ The realization that we all humans are essentially the same provides a sense offearlessness to innumerable beings. And, the enlightenment of one soul can becomethe cause of lighting innumerable other souls. How does a man get free from thedesires of life? Does meditation or reflection or self-study make any difference? Butthe primary things are: 1. company of the true GurÊ, the enlightened one, theself-illumined one; 2. and the major reason is the deep or inner meditation. Who is the GurÊ? GurÊ is he who knows how and with what method can themind of the disciple continue to roam about in conscience. The basic idea is that itshould be able to experience joy and happiness in meditation, and roam about theinner feelings joyously. And, only a holy man, a spiritual mentor can see this whohimself is one with the inner feelings. Otherwise, it is not possible. The most difficultwork in the world is to keep a check on the mind, but once one reaches under thepatronage of the GurÊ, this happens quite easily. This is the significance of thepatronage and protection of the True GurÊ. What is the necessity of the GurÊ? The GurÊ suggests us the way out and tells uswhat is important at a particular given time — whether it is meditation or prayer ordevotion or recitation or indulgence in work, etc. Even meditation undergoes changein keeping with the region, time and feeling. It is as if the medicine were the same buthad to be taken in different forms. The essence is the same as to how can roamingamong inner thoughts be possible. What is the criterion of a true GurÊ? In a way, no criterion in this respect canwork, but still it is the intense will of man which can recognize an enlightened person.Among the chief characteristics of an enlightened person are equipoise and discardingbodily attractions. Is complete detachment possible through discarding physicalattraction? What we call disembodied state is perfect in proportion to where we standtoday but is incomplete in proportion to the state of kevalj¤ÈnÏ. deh chhatÈ jenÏ dashÈ varte dehÈtÏt Similarly, ShrÏmad RÈjchand in his ¶tamsiddhi has given other characteristicsalso. There we can see - The GurÊs are always farsighted. They possess that farsightedness which helpsthem know today what the disciple will come to know tomorrow. They get theknowledge of what is the fundamental reason of the inclinations and attitude of thedisciple and what will be their consequence. They know the malady within thedisciple, the malady which is fundamental and which encompasses all maladies likesorrow, anguish, birth, death, etc. Only the GurÊ can provide remedy for such amalady because the GurÊ knows the reason behind that. There are some reasonswhich are apparent to all, but the basic reason behind is something else. When can aphysician provide remedial medicine? Obviously, he can do so only after heunderstands the basic reason and provides the malady. That is why the knowledgeableand the enlightened people say: šYou may make any number of attempts using yourbrain, but you will not achieve the desired result, but success is yours as soon as youreach under the patronage of the GurÊ. This is so because as you reach the GurÊ’sprotection, he gets hold of the basic reason and gives out the remedy. That is why this
  • 59. has also been said that one should always have immense faith in the GurÊ. Forexample, you go to a physician and accept whatever medicine he gives you. Younever question him as to why he gave you this and not that medicine. Similarly,whatever way-out is suggested by the GurÊ should be faithfully followed. Thus, thesecond meaning of farsightedness is he who knows the reason and consequences,cause and the effect.
  • 60. CHAPTER IX FEELING OF SHELTER There is no one competent enough to provide you safety and security andsimilarly you are not competent enough to give safety and security to anyone. Stillman is ever searching for comfort and security. He holds that security lies in thechildren, in home and in various material things of usage. He is under the impressionthat he is secure if he has a family, a house, wealth, etc. He is also apprehensive thatnobody will protect him if he does not have all these things. That is why he earnsmoney, constructs a house, raises a family, etc. and maintains cordial relations withfriends and relatives. He does all this for the sake of comfort and security. He wantsthat somehow his comfort remains intact. However, the more efforts he makes for hiscomfort and security, the more unsafe he finds himself. Earlier, he was concernedwith his own security alone, but now he is equally concerned with the safety of thewealth he has earned. Now he has to endeavour for the safety and security of hisfamily. Thus, concern for the security of all those things which he had raised for hisown security becomes his liability, his concern now. Thus, all the efforts made for comfort and security become the cause of hissorrow and insecurity. The house was constructed for safety, but who will now takecare of the safety and security of the house? The more secure a man wants to become,the feeling of more insecurity take over. That is why the religious text repeat time andagain that none except religion can provide protection or shelter to you.What is Religion? The nature of religion is to conceptually seek and get the shelter of swabhÈv, andin its practical form it implies seeking shelter. Man is unable to understand this and then in ignorance he himself gets confusedand in consequence makes the people around also confused. It is in that confusion thatmany maladies are born. Diseases of mind and body and worry and concern for familyand home are also born. When you get this knowledge, when you understand thatnobody can provide you protection and that only religion is the protection, meditationis the protection, it is only then that you attain samÈdhi or meditation. As one takes to the protection of wealth, position, reputation, home, family,society, etc., one becomes a victim of varied maladies; and as one takes to the shelterof religion, one attains meditation.Meaning of Meditation Meditation or samÈdhi does not mean the end of maladies but to remaininternally in meditation in the midst of all these. Can we call it equipoise? Actually, itis equipoise, but it will be better to call it meditation. Meditation means resolutionattained, and no problem remains. In fact, the circumstances are the problems. Butsometimes a particular circumstance makes us confounded and agitated, then underthat agitation and confusion an ordinary circumstance also takes the form of aproblem. What is the characteristic of one engaged in spiritual achievement? He shoulddiscard the very idea of seeking shelter with anyone except religion, and rather hemust seek protection with religion. This is the characteristic of one engaged in
  • 61. spiritual achievement, may be he a householder or an ascetic. Of course, there are twopaths-one of the worldly life and the other of the meditation. When does meditationbegin? When does one jump into the stage of meditation from that of worldly life? Ithappens when man comes to understand that religion is the only protection. Of course,everybody says so for the sake of saying that he is in the protection of religion, but intheir heart of hearts they think that nothing can move on without money and that nonewill serve or look after me except my family and children. Who will bother for me if Ido not have a social status?The SÈdhÊ SamÈj Even some ascetics also say that none will bother for them if they do not havereputation. Sometimes an idea also comes to mind as to who will provide me food.How can I meditate without the devotees, without society, without status. That is whythere is so much of absurdity among the sadhus. They have no faith in meditation.They also say for the sake of saying that the Arihants are great, and religion is a partof life. Their life shows that ‘my status, my reputation, my society, my devotees aremy patron; only they will protect me. In this ignorance, innumerable maladies areborn. In the name of religion, they bring up absurdity and misconception, and onmany an occasion they risk their meditation for the fulfillment of their familialdesires.
  • 62. Such people cannot be called ones endeavouring for spiritual achievement, ratherthey are going the downhill. This causes damage to religion and society.Ways of Seeking Shelter What are the ways to bring man to the protection of religion, to make himunderstand that only religion can protect. First of all, man must introspect and becomeauthentic. If he does not have any faith in the Arihant and that he in his heart of heartsbelieves that wealth, position, etc. can provide shelter, then he should say clearly thathe does not have he faith because the mind says that his protection lies in materialthings rather than in religion. It is mÈyÈ, if he just says for the sake of saying that heis in the protection of religion. Man’s inner faculties awaken as he does meditation and as a result of that innerknowledge man, actually, goes to the protection of religion. One cannot get thisunderstand- ing without meditation. And without this understanding, man does not goto the protection of religion. Ignorance remains as a result of the samskÈras of earlierlives. Resolution will automatically come as you meditate and from that resolution isawakened the understanding and this latter induces man to seek religion’s shelter. Thedeep effects of the samskÈras of previous births do not go without this understanding.Kinds of Understanding Understanding is of two kinds-the external understand- ing and internalunderstanding. The mediums through which external understanding is possible arecompany of the holy, discourses given by the saintly, etc. But inner understanding isawakened only through meditation. Both of them are necessary for man. The externalunderstanding alone cannot bring about the change.A Jump from the World This occurs when man gives up the idea of seeking shelter with material thingslike wealth, status and family and instead seeks the shelter with religion, with Arihant,Siddha, with sadhu and with religion. This occurs when he develops the innerunderstanding and that is the only way, that is the only shelter and that is the onlybasis of my life. It has been said in the Uttradhayan SÊtra: jarÈ mara‡ vege‡a× bujjh mȇȇa pȇi‡a× dhammo dÏvo pa——hÈ ya, gaÏ sara‡muttama× In this way, when man comes under the protection or shelter of religion, hebecomes a sÈdhak or one endeavouring for spiritual achievement. He is either anascetic or a householder. Real understanding follows meditation. Even if the feelingfor shelter does not change even after taking the a‡uvrat or minor vow or themahÈvrat or the major vow, man might be intellectually understanding the issue butat heart he still feels inclined towards material things. Everybody knows that wealthdoes not provide shelter but still man cannot give up his temptation for it. The intellectual or external understanding can become an inspiration which helpsprepare ground for the inner understanding.Why Shelter of Religion only
  • 63. Only religion is the shelter. This, however, does not mean that wealth, status,reputation, etc. are not of any use. You come under the shelter of religion, thereafterreligion will provide you what is necessary for you. If you required wealth for your development, you would have it; if you requiredstatus, you would get it. You will get what you need for your meditation anddevelopment, and not what you wish for. In this way, shelter is of religion andthereafter whatever is needed will be provided to you. It can be wealth or poverty,honour or ignominy, anything. Whatever is required for meditation you will get.Essence of Religion If a man always continues to get good things of life, he can possibly go astray.So it is necessary to give him a jolt. Religion is like the mother who takes every careof the child. She does everything that is to the betterment of the child. However, if thechild is a wanderer, mother cannot do anything even if she wants to help the child; shecan help him only if the child gives up his wandering and comes under her shelter.Everybody cannot understand this. Therefore, everybody cannot understand theessence of religion because they ask for comfort and facilities and not the means. Sothey observe religion so long as they continue to get comfort and facilities, otherwisethey give it up.Acceptance with Resolution What does one working for spiritual achievement feel-that he has now come tothe shelter of religion. Then he feels that whatever is happening in his life is for thebetterment and development of his life. Thus, he accepts this resolution knowingly. Ifhe accepts the situation willingly, meditation will follow; The sadhak himself has nodesire or expectation.Test of the Feeling for Shelter When a fellow comes under the shelter of religion, he has no apekshÈ or desireof his own. The word apekshÈ means what is being received is not right. When youare under the shelter of religion and you still feel that whatever you are getting is notgood, it means you have a sense of doubt in religion. However, when this isshelter-seeking and dedication, it would mean whatever you get is right. Then youhave neither any expectations from nor any complaints against life. So long as youhave a complaint, a demand, you are not in the shelter, you have not completelydedicated yourself to religion. It is an old human habit to repeatedly doubt orrepeatedly complain. To overcome such die-hard habits and such samskÈra ismeditation. Shelter is more appropriate than dedication. One can dedicate with love aswell. In fact, that is not dedication. Dedication (samarpa‡a) means offering (arpa‡a)in the right way. Arpa‡ or offering means to give in completely, not with love butwith rational and right intelligence seeking shelter with arhant, sadhus or religion. Religion opposes none.-neither wealth, nor status nor reputation. Whatever isdesired for your development will be given to you. It is just possible that as a rich manreaches the shelter of religion, he gets poor. What will you say in relation to this? Thatpoverty might be essential for him. In this way, whatever is necessary for you will beprovided. That can be honour and this can also be dishonour-it can be anything.
  • 64. CHAPTER X OAÕK¶R : A REFLECTION Om is a sound. There is a difference between a sound and a word. Sound is notpart of any language whereas words belong to language. For example, there isdifference between the sound of a bell and the word ’—an..—an’. In other words, thesound and the word that gives expression to that sound are two different things. Sound is also of two kinds-Èhat and anÈhat. A sound produced by the striking oftwo material things is ahat and the sound that is produced of its own without thestriking of any two things is called anÈhat. Om is an anÈhat sound. Just as there is difference between the sound of the belland the word ‘—an...—an’, similarly the sound of om and the word om are different.Just as ‘—an...—an’ is the nearest word that represents the sound produced by thebell, similarly om is the nearest possible word to give expression to the anÈhat soundof om or oam. The entire world is prone to extinction. There is nothing concrete in this world.There is vibration of motion everywhere. And the sound of this vibration is oam.None has created this sound; it is self-existent and all-pervasive. In the sound of om, three kinds of sound is found-a + u + m. When ‘a’ and ‘u’combine together, the sound ‘o’ is formed. Thus it becomes o + m = om.Way to Pronounce O×kÈr The word o×kÈr should be pronounced properly: it is obligatory. First, take adeep breath in and then breathing out pronounce ‘o’ and pronounce ‘m’ at the end.Divide the total length of your breath into three parts and spend two parts of it in thepronunciation of ‘o’ and one part of it in the pronunciation of ‘m’. For example, if youtake say ten seconds breathing out, you should spend about seven secondspronouncing ‘o’ and the last three seconds be given to the pronunciation of ‘m’. Thereshould be a gap of minimum of 10 to 15 seconds in between the pronunciation of‘om’ each time: you should remain completely silent during this gap. During thatsilence, you will feel something within and you should continue having a feel of thosewaves. In this way, you can pronounce ‘om’ thrice, five times, eleven times,twenty-one times or one hundred and eight times. It is, however, obligatory to keepsilent for a while after each pronunciation of it. The methodical pronunciation of om removes all remains of impurity within thebody. You feel a sort of balance between body and consciousness. It is always usefulto pronounce om thrice or five times before beginning meditation. As we told you, the sound of om is self-existent and all-pervasive. It has beenhappening continuously at every place, but we fail to listen to it because of the flow ofthoughts and feelings in mind. When the holy men through their meditation or silenceentered this peaceful within, they then felt this sound in that environs of peace. Whenwe pronounce om from outside, our body and consciousness tend to gradually identifythemselves with the intonation of the sound of om. Breath is a universally common part. One may belong to any religious traditionor denomination, everyone breathes and breathing in each case is the same. Just as
  • 65. breathing is not related to any particular person or thing, similarly om is also auniversal sound. It is not related to any specific religious tradition or denomination.Still every tradition and civilization has pronounced it in its own way. For example, inthe Hindu and Jain culture, it is pronounced as om and in the Christian and Muslimcivilizations, they call it amen. ¶chÈrya ¶tma RÈm, in his exegesis of the ¶chÈra×ga- SÊtra (p. 276) throwslight on the form om of in the Jain tradition and says: ¶yatchakkhÊ logvipassÏ logassa ahobhÈga× ja‡ai uÇÇh bhÈga× jȇai, tiriya× bhÈga× jÈ×ai In the above quoted sentence is contained a clear definition of the sound of om.A being who knows well the form of the three worlds and who has been completelydetached from the worldly desires and temptations, has already attained theindescribable bliss can be called farsighted. And it is only such a being as can showthe way to liberation to people caught in the web of worldliness. In other words, onewho knows fully well about the three worlds is all-knowing and all-seeing. He canalso be expressed through the word of om. In the SÊtra referred to, the opening letter of each of the threewords-ahobhÈga×, uÇÇhbhÈga× and tiriya× or madhya bhÈga×-used there hasbeen taken to form the word om-a + u + m. In other words, when ‘a’ is added to ‘u’and then ‘m’, the word aum or om will come to us. Thus, it makes clear that the wordom is synonym of one who knows well the three worlds, is all-knowing andall-seeing. In the yoga dar„an also, this meaning of the word has been emphasized. Of course, no exegete or commentator of the given Sutra has ever imagined theword om while explaining the above discussed words. However, so far myunderstanding goes, the author who composed the Sutra might have had this very ideain his mind while composing it. The basis of this assumption is that the order in whichthese three words-adho, tiryak and udharv-have been placed do not indicate the threeworlds. Thus, one can imagine from this that the author of the Sutra manifesting theword om through these terms might have remained dear to the author.. Apart from this, the Panch Parmesha—hÏ mantra of Jainism has also beenacknowledged as symbolic of om. ‘Arihant’ (lit. the killer (hant) of the enemies (ari)like evil), the asharÏrÏ (embodied) siddhas and ‘ayariya’ (the enlightened ones) arethree Jain terms. If we add the three letters of the above given terms-a + a + aa-weshall find aa with elongation If we add to this ‘aa’ to ‘u’ of Upadhyaya and ‘m’ ofMuni, it will mean aa + u + m. In this way, some of the ancient Jain scholars haveproved the presence of om in the NamokÈr Mantra of Jainism. This also makes clearthat the soul which has all the qualities like immense knowledge, philosophy, blissand prowess represented by the word om is all-pervasive and all-knowing. This is of course a historical fact that the word om has been in use in the Vedictradition. It has not been used in the Jain scriptural literature in the form of meditation.But in the Jain tradition the Jain Acharyas have accepted it. They have thus adaptedthe word om in accordance with their own culture and thought. Since then the wordhas gained a significant place in the Jain culture as well.Method of O×kÈr Meditation The method of o×kÈr meditation is²
  • 66. First of all breathe in deeply; then speak out two words-‘o’ and ‘m’. First speak‘o’ for some time and then say ‘m’. The word ‘o’ should be spoken in two parts and ‘m’ in one part. If a personcannot do anything else, he should else pronounce the word while breathing in and outdeeply. How many times is the word om to be uttered? One must utter at least five to ten times. Take the deep breath in and utter theword. After this utterance, remain still for a while and concentrate on o×kÈr.Method of O×kÈr Meditation You can meditate while uttering the word o×kÈr or you can also do so after theutterances. It is easy to concentrate on o×kÈr in the ÈgiÈ charka. But it will be better if youbegin it from the heart charka. When you are able to concentrate your mind here, thengo to the former. And when you succeed in concentrating on that as well, then takeanother step and try to concentrate on sahasra chakra. Concentration here meansinstallation there of the o×kÈr and then being with it. One should learn to getcompletely immersed in doing so. He should forget everything else, instead he shouldget immersed in that. This would mean concentration of mind.O×kÈr NÈda Yoga One may sit in any posture of one’s like. For example, one should sit ingiÈnÈsan or j¤ÈnÈsan. In this posture, one’s neck, hind part of the head andbackbone should be straight in one line. Arm should be bent a bit from the elbows.Eyes should be lightly closed. There should be smile on your face. Method-For the first few moments, calm down your breathing and bring it to itsnormal state. Concentrate your mind and heart. Breathe in deeply and take it fromsahasra chakra to mÊlÈdhÈr chakra. The utterance of the word om is to be divided into two parts. In both the parts,cadence/modulation should remain the same. Your mind should be completelyconcentrated on the sound. Now making your sound sweet, the first part comprising‘o’ should be taken on the imaginary route from mÊlÈdhÈr chakra through su–umananÈ‚Ï and then the anÈht charka. As you reach there, close your lips and utter out ‘m’and taking this sound till sahasra chakra give up the breath. Try to make this latterutterance of ‘m’ as long as possible.Benefit This is nÈda (sound) yoga which calms down the system of intestines in humanbody. This helps man concentrate and this also affects the su–umana nÈÇÏ. This Nadyoga is of crucial help in awakening the ÈgiÈ chakra.
  • 67. CHAPTER XI WHAT IS S¶M¶YIK? One day in the morning at an ambrosial hour I was engrossed in meditation in apeaceful and lonely place. As I got free from my meditation, I began to ponder uponthe six essentials. In these essentials, sÈmÈyik is of primary importance. Among thefive conducts, the first one is on sÈmÈyik and among the twelve vows of a believingJain, sÈmÈyik is the ninth. From the perspective of vows, essentials and conduct,sÈmÈyik is of special significance. But what is sÈmÈyik? When my reflection on thisquestion went deeper and deeper, I happened to remember in my mind this text of theBhagavadÏsÊtra-aya samaie which implies that the soul is sÈmÈyik and sÈmÈyik isthe soul. Both soul and the sÈmÈyik are not two different entities, rather they are one. For a believing Jain, it is imperative that he should practice sÈmÈyik for at leasttwo ghaÇÏs or few moments. Here we have several expectations from the sÈmÈyik.Pure sÈmÈyik means living as per one’s nature, but then nature has numerous states.The first and the best of all is to discard all worldly attractions and temptations andlive in a pure state of detachment. If one remains in this mental state for two ghaÇÏs,one can sure attain the divine knowledge (kevalj¤Èna). Apart from this, nature thestate of indifference has so many states. All these differences and states are based onthe basis of worldly attractions and temptations. Meditation is also a practice of thestate of indifference. To explain this, we can say that it is like water that halts andbecomes quiet and calm. Human mind cannot concentrate and meditate on any objectfor more than two gharis. In this way, the sÈmÈyik for a believing Jain is the samayikfor each moment. The SÈmÈyik done by a „rÈvaka is like practising sainthood. Foran ascetic, each moment is manogupti and if he has ever to practice essentials, heshould practice them carefully.Duties of a ƒrÈvaka in SÈmÈyik Self-study : He should make a self-study of an outline of Jain thought, JainTattvaprakÈsh, UpÈsakdashÈ×g SÊtra, Anta­ gaÇadsȇga J¤ÈtÈdharmakathÈ×gaSÊtra, life-stories of great men from Jain history, etc.  Looking at the breath and meditation;  Utterance of OamkÈr and meditation;  Remembrance of God (recitation of NamokÈr Mantra);  Singing eulogies, prayers and devotional songs, etc. With the help of self-study, meditation and manogupti be done. The meaning ofsÈmÈyiks is staying in a state of equilibrium or concentration with a feeling ofequilibrium. The most important of all these is meditation. Through this medium,mind can be easily stabilized and its pace is checked. Sometimes we feel that our finddoes not remain stable in meditation, but it gets absorbed in prayer or self-study. Thereason behind this is that during prayer and self-study, the states of mind continue tochange and as a result we do not become aware of mind’s wavering. On the otherhand, in meditation we have the support only of one state and consequently webecome instantly aware of mind’s wavering. In a way, recitation is also a good thingand we call it padastha meditation, i.e., concentrating on any given text.
  • 68. CHAPTER XII WHO IS A MUNI? Who is a muni? One need not remain silent in answer to this question and itsanswer is also very simple and obvious-he who observes maun or silence is a muni.There is nothing heterogeneous between maun and maunÏ. The field of maun is notvery wide. We can say that maun is of three kinds: 1. Silence of body; 2. Silence of speech; and 3. Silence of mind. The silence of body and speech is observed by us. And the silence of the mindhappens of its own. And as the silence of mind takes place, the silence of body andspeech happens quite easily.What is Silence of Body? To sit still in one posture and let what is happening inside the body happen.What is Silence of Speech? Not to utter any words.What is Silence of Mind? 1. Silence of mind happens when we are in a position of complete inertia. If the ideas do come, let them come; if some ideas go, let them go. 2. You do not have to either stop an idea or go after another idea. Thus, you should remove all the restriction on mind. Consequently, it becomes calm of its own. 3. By controlling the mind, mind gets more nourishment. 4. To become effortless thus and let what happens happen. This state of SamÈdhi and this state of inertia is called silence of mind. You should not have any expectations from concentration. The silence of mind ispossible only if we do not have any expectations. If you have any expectations, your mind will remain on the result. Thus, youshould sit still and calm with no expectations, especially with no expectations frommeditation. Let what happens happen. The silence of body and mind helps in observing the silence of mind.
  • 69. CHAPTER XIII SELF-CONFESSION AND REPENTANCE Violation (atikrama‡a, in PrÈkrit) of the prescribed code and self-confession andrepentance (pratikrama‡a, in Prakrit) are two important words. In the former PrÈkritword, ati is the prefix and in the latter prati is the prefix. In the formation of boththese words, kramu is the main verb (dhÈtu). When one violates or goes against theprescribed rules or code, it is called atikrama‡a and as one shows genuine repentanceafter a sort of self-introspection or self-confession to come back to the code, it ispratikrama‡a. Even when one is conscious in his meditation, one may sometimes stray intopassions or sentiments. To remain conscious of that straying daily in the morning andevening is called the pratikrama‡a. One should look back at one’s own life asobjectively as if one were looking at someone else’s life. Vow in itself is being aware.And pratikrama‡a or repentance/confession makes us conscious of thatconsciousness. Daily practice of it both in the morning and evening is necessarybecause passion dominates in the fifth ÈrÈ. Therefore, the practice of thisconsciousness helps us remain aloof of passions. Repentance/confession is a cons-cious attempt of reiterating our awareness. It implies looking back time and again atour daily life in a conscious way. All the different forms of violation of the vows taken by the Jain ascetics and thelaity are variously the result of delusion. It may be the delusion of body of or anythingelse, the person concerned does not know as to what he is doing but still he goes ondoing something. That is why the deed done by such a person is called false, i.e. in theform of unnatural condition. The person has his existence, but he is not in accordancewith his nature. It is just like a dream but in fact not a dream. Each deed done by andeluded person is false because that is done in a state of delusion. Perhaps even thedoer does not know what he is doing. Since it happened in a state of delusion, itcannot be called action, rather it is a reaction. Such reactions are called evil deeds.This deed is done by one in the state of delusion which is born of either slumber orintoxication and sometimes as a result of some physical ailment. There is also internaldelusion which is born of the deluding karma. Any deed done even in the state ofdelusion or carelessness is also not an action, rather a reaction and that is why this isalso called false. False here implies that it has an existence, but actually it is not as itappears to be. Thus, repentance/confession of all these violations is contained in thesefour words: tassa michchhÈmi dukkÇa× me = my tassa = that dukkaÇ + a× = evil deed michchhÈmi = be false This is not a kind of direction, commitment or proclamation. This is a feeling.When a person in his cons- ciousness looks back at his daily routine, the deeds thathave happened as a result of carelessness, promptness, he finds them good as well asbad. In the worldly vocabulary, this can be charity given or even theft committed.
  • 70. However, whatever happened it happened in delusion. It happened as a result ofanger, pride, illusion or greed. When man looks at all this as an observer, all thisseems like a dream to him. That is what is called tassa michchhÈmi dukkaÇa×. Thisimplies that this deed has been done by me in a state of delusion and thus it is a baddeed and such a deed can only be false. It in no way can be true. Only a good deedcan be true. And a good deed means that our natural merits become sound anddemerits become smeager. As we again look back at our daily routine vigilantly, theexperience we have after knowing and observing later on the deed done in delusion iscalled tassa michchhÈmi dukkaÇa×. Thus pratikrama‡a is a kind of self-introspection. It is not an activity, neither inwords nor in thought. However, our self-introspection will be as deep as our thoughtswill be calm. Obviously, peace of mind will allow us to see with the same proportionof clarity, certainty and depth. Tassa michchhÈmi dukkÇa×. It is not a commitment or a proclamation, rather itis the result of pratikrama‡a or self-confession/repentance. It indicates whetherpratikrama‡a in fact took place or not. In other words, if it had really taken place, youwill realize that all the deeds or misdeeds that took place during your deluding statewould seem to be unreal to you. There are different means for increasing this awareness such as company of theholy, prayer, self-study, meditation, etc. All of these means help in our renaissance. Asaint will never rejoice in slander because slander of a person having delusion willlead to nothing, rather the saint will endeavour for the removal of his delusion.
  • 71. CHAPTER XIV BASIS OF SOCIAL STRUCTURE Here one glimpses the idea that philanthropy is the basis of life. First, a personworks for the nourishment of his family which helps in the progress and developmentof that family. Thus, all members of the family enjoy the comforts and pleasures oflife. And when a member falls ill, the remaining members of the family look afterhim. Live and let live is the essence of corporate life. Mutual cooperation can increasepÈpa or evil and it can also cause increase of dharma or righteousness. Just as ahouseholder has his family, a saint has his ga‡a. The householders help one another inthe acquisition of wealth, property and means of comfort. They also cooperate withone another in the enjoyment of physical comforts and enjoyments. The saints try toincrease restraint, meditation and dharma or righteous- ness and they cooperate withone another for the observance of their disciplined and austere life-style. This sÊtra is an indicator of love and friendship. Generally speaking, thisproclaims that all beings are somehow or the other related to one another. They areobliged to one another. In this way this can also be called a social sÊtra. This sÊtra becomes metaphysically significant only when it gets transformed intothe field of religion or meditation. It will give out the same kind of meaning as weshall try to understand.Pilgrimage Centre The pilgrimage of the Lord is also based on mutual cooperation. The idea thataltruism is the basis of life combines the pilgrimage. The ascetics cooperate with thehouseholders and vice-versa. Still they are not dependent on each other. They seekeach other’s cooperation, but do not depend on each other.Who is the Mothre of Pain? When does a man become dependent? One becomes dependent on the otherwhen one desires or expects something from the other, the desire that the other personwill cooperate with me and the expectation that he will cooperate with me. However,this feeling that if cooperation comes it is good but if it does not come, it is all thesame. If the inner self is unbiased, hope will be there, and if hope is there,disappointment is bound to be there. Then all pains and pleasures, joys and sorrowsare born. Thus, a sadhu must not have any expectation of anybody. Expectation is themother of pain and it causes furtherance of the world.Causes of Desire for Pleasure Why does a man have any expectation? He does so because he is under delusionthat he can achieve something from someone or that someone can give me some joyor comfort. He has not yet been able to understand that he himself is effulgent light ofbliss-incarnate. Nobody can give me either pain or pleasure. So long as we do notbecome aware of the bliss inside, we keep on expecting joy and pleasure from outside.Why Expectation?
  • 72. Desire or expectation is born of spiritual ignorance. Desire/expectation is anembodiment of ignorance; it is a delusion. Man is accustomed to think that ifhope/expectation is there, protection will also be there. However, in the end thisproves to be an illusion.What is Liberation? Then should we have no expectation for liberation as well? This is an unnaturalquestion because expectation or desire is a feeling that originates from cessation frominflows whereas desire/expectation is a feeling born of karma and indicates thewantonness of mind. Liberation is also an indicator of the stability of mind. We cameacross a little earlier a word duga¤chha‡dye which means natural getting rid of sins.In this way, the natural efforts to know the true nature of soul, detachment fromillusion, steadiness in yoga are called wish to get emancipation or liberation. Just as a pig has the natural tendency to eat excreta, similarly the body hasnatural tendency for lust in the presence of knowledge and conduct deluding karma.Apart from this, after cessation of the deluding karma and having the knowledge ofthe soul, all the habits of sins are eliminated and natural pleasure of the soul takesplace.
  • 73. CHAPTER XV THE REAL STRENGTH Who are we and what is our real strength? A clear understanding of it is not onlyimportant but obligatory for us. When man does not know this, he in a state ofignorance considers himself different from what he actually is. This misunderstandingcaused by his ignorance becomes the primary cause of his pain and suffering. That iswhy man thinks that the strength of his caste, wealth, friends, etc. is his real strength.He forgets that this is not his real strength. In fact, the spiritual strength of man is hisreal strength. However, in delusion he becomes responsible for many evil deeds witha view to further empower those external strengths. In the process, he happens tocommit some ignoble deeds which actually weaken his spiritual strength. We knowman remains worried and even fearful after adding much to his caste, friend, physicaland wealth strength. He is worried and afraid of losing the strength he has acquired.This fear of his is indicative of the fact that the strength he has acquired is not his realstrength. The real strength brings along fearlessness. The more is the spiritual strength, themore fearless is the man. All other strengths add to the fear, only spiritual strengthovercomes it. The more fearful a man is, the more protection he will require. Fearincreases in the same proportion in which our external strength increases. He alsofeels the need of security to fend against that fear. In this way, the more externallystrong a man is, the more fearful he is and he will require more security. LordMahÈvÏra meditated for the fearlessness and spiritual strength. Had he so desired, hemight have sought someone’s support, but he did not seek either support or securityfrom anyone. He knew well that spiritual strength does not increase with the increasein external strength, and spiritual strength does not grow with the help coming fromothers, and without spiritual strength, knowledge does not grow. Therefore, he gaveup all supports, and he became dependent on his spiritual strength or let us say hebecame self-dependent. It is said that an ascetic („rma‡ic) is self-dependent. He doesnot stand on the strength of anybody else, on the strength of some other person, thingor situation, rather he stands on his own strength. He who stands on the strength ofothers is constantly trying to please the others. To this end, he even goes to the extentof committing various evil deeds . Truth, non-violence and meditation is the only wayfor adding to the spiritual strength. The way to God is the way taken by the brave andthe brave is one who depends on his own spiritual strength. Majority of the peoplelive under the delusion that their strength will increase with the increase in theirexternal strength. Sometimes some saints also do the same feeling that their strengthwill increase with the increase of their following among the laity. This is ignorance. The reality is that increasing the external strength and by remaining dependenton it does not add to the spiritual strength, rather it weakens it. If you empower yourspiritual strength, all other kinds of strength will increase automati- cally. Thus, a truesaint is he who leaving aside the support of the external strength remains firm on hisdependence on spiritual strength. So, we should all try to empower our spiritualstrength. Your spiritual strength will increase in the same proportion in which you havethe firmness of mind and meditation. And it is with the spiritual strength that the
  • 74. strength of society, of followers, etc. will go with you. Without spiritual strength, noother strength remains constant with you.ƒrama‡a­SrÈvaka Relationship The relationship of an ascetic („rama‡a) with the laity („rÈvaka) is limited togiving discourses, teaching religion and the value of becoming pure vegetarian in dietand taking clothes in charity, etc. Our relationship with the laity is limited to givingreligious discourses for religious renaissance wherever possible; it is limited to searchout for the sake of our religious rituals pure (vegetarian) food in charity wherever wecan find. This is the extreme limit to our relationship with the laity. If we have moreintimate and closer relationship, the influence of company is bound to occur on you.
  • 75. CHAPTER XVIRESTRAINT AND NON-RESTRAINT The more we shall be attracted to physical senses, the more we shall be attractedtowards the means (such as wealth, woman, reputation, etc.) for the fulfillment ofthose desires of senses. It is because of the attraction towards those means that mancons- tantly endeavours towards them, tries to acquire them. This endeavour isindiscipline, antithetical to restraint and austere life. What is discipline or restraint? The endeavour made to overcome or negate thesenses is called discipline or restraint: it is austere life. On the contrary, theendeavours made to acquire those means and to own them is called non-restraint. The basic issue here relates to mind. If mind is attached or is attracted to thebody, then it is or non-restraint even while observing all the other rules andregulations. In that case, the observance of rules and regulations is a mere shambecause a mind attracted towards body is always chasing the fulfillment of senses.Thus, outwardly observing the rules and regulations and thus observing restraint, allinternal efforts of such a man are for the fulfillment of desires of senses. Such a manis not restrained, not austere.Who is a Pa‡Çit? He who knows the present ksha‡ or moment and recognizes it is the pa‡Çit. Theword ksha‡ means the proper opportunity that came our way for religious meditation.Since here it has been used in the field of religion, therefore it implies the properopportunity for religious meditation. At one place Lord Mahavira asks Gautama,šsamayaŠ goyam mÈ pamÈyae›, i.e. O Gautama, do not be careless for a momentbecause the TÏratha×kar is now himself present. After the TÏratha×kar is gone fromthis world, it will become difficult to recognize true religion. Therefore, so long asyou have the proper opportunity, meditate, yet remain vigilant. Pa‡Çit means the one who has pȇÇÈ inherent in him. The word pȇÇÈ againmeans praj¤È, i.e. rational knowledge. He who has this is a pa‡Çit. Addressing such apa‡Çit, it has been said that you know your moment through your pȇÇÈ (pa‡Çit). For the accomplishment of any work, it is necessary that matter, region (space),time and feeling all five should be uniformally appropriate. It is only then thatsomething is accomplished. The meaning of appropriate time is time for religiousmeditation; nature means the sprouting of the earlier karma; and intention. In otherwords, matter, space, time and feeling all four are obligatory, are appropriate forreligious meditation, only a special and useful effort by man is required. Many peopleinterpret it in another way. Neither remember the past nor imagine the future, butremain firm in the present. This sutra could also mean that pa‡Çit is he who does notget lost in the memories of the past or in the fancies of the future, but meditates in thepresent. To forget the past does not mean that you should also forget observingself-confession and repentance. The latter is very important. The point is that such apandit does not feel sad at the memories of the past. In other words, he does not beenhappy or sad about either the past or the future. It is also necessary to look far into thefuture and be on the look out for an opportunity. The meaning inherent here is thatmerely feeling sad or disappointed looking at some events in he past is a futile
  • 76. exercise. Therefore, instead of getting involved in such an exercise, one should makeproper use of and meditate in the present moment which is with him.Dynamism in Meditation Arai au——e se mehÈvÏ kha‡aŠsi mukke. Renunciation of home and family is necessary to bring about dynamism inmeditation. How is the family and home made? It is made of relations. An asceticmust not have relations with anybody. Whenever he gets involved in relations, hebegins to waiver in meditation. As man gradually furthers in meditation, people begin to surround him. Most ofthe people come because of their selfish motives and gradually they begin to becomeobstacles in the way to meditation. Therefore, the best way to meditation is lonelinessor aloofness. Wherever you find the proper matter, space and time, you should go ondoing meditation. Do not get deeply involved in any situation or individual. Give yourblessings to all and go on with your work. Wherever and whenever there is anattraction towards things of the senses, that is the time and place for extendinginvitation to pain and obstacles.
  • 77. CHAPTRE XVII FAST TO ERADICATE BODY-ATTRACTION What is the root cause of the attraction for the body? It is diet. That is why stresshas been laid on fasting. Man can tolerate anything except hunger. You may give onehowever beautiful means of comfort, clothes, house, etc., but nothing appeals to mindunless and until one has taken his food. A hungry man will remain restless. In thisway, the root cause of the attraction for body is food/diet. Man considers the hungerof body as his own. Fasting has been given so much of importance because through itsmedium you can see that hunger belongs to body, not to you. In a way, fasting is a testof your attraction for body. To remain in a state of enforced hunger is a different question. Someone iscapable of buying and eating food but still he remains hungry, it is quite a differentthing. To merely remain hungry is not everything. Eradication of the attraction forbody is also necessary. And this happens only when you make a self-analysis alongwith keeping fast. That is why at many places, eating of one thing once a day has beengiven more importance than fasting because these and such other things are veryhelpful in eradicating the attachment for body. But it is also necessary to see as to howto go about fasting. During fasting you have to see whether the hunger is felt by youor by your body. Such an analysis is possible only through the discipline and controlof mind. Therefore, along with fasting, practice of mind-control and body-control isalso necessary. To check the mind, it is necessary to take your self to the Self, i.e.self-realization. For example, we discipline and control mind through concentrationand meditation. Then one’s mind gets absorbed in self. And in that observation thus,attachment with body is broken as we make self-analysis during fasting. Here,self-analysis is more important than giving up food. Mere giving up of food is notenough, but it must be accompanied by practice of meditation and relaxation. Disciplining and controlling mind implies the practice of meditation andrelaxation of body. Thus meditating, one will automatically feel the breaking off ofattachment with body. Fasting makes control over mind firmer. But no ritual, no effortcan bear fruition without the practice of self- controlling, may it be fasting, devotion,prayer, worship or remembrance of Divine Name. Come what may, along with this,practice of self-controlling is necessary. The term samiti means actions performed in the right manner. Right mannersmeans by protecting the living beings consciously and rationally. The savants havedivided them into five sothat everybody can comprehend them fully. So by doingdeeds in the right manner is called samiti. Can a householder also try to control physical and mental actions? Yes, ahouseholder can do so. It is good to control and discipline mind as much as possible,and whatever he does along with this should be done in a rational way. The word gupti means control over mind, word and body. The more we are ableto control our mind, word and body, the more disciplined and restrained our life willbe: all else is indiscipline and unrestraint. Gupti is a kind of negation.
  • 78. —hȇe‡a× mo‡e‡a× jha‡e‡a× The basis or root of discipline is inner perspective. Of course, external ethic isalso important. If the inner perspective is of acquiring comfort for the body, then allexternal ethic is indiscipline and of no use. If the inner perspective is of going beyondbody, then this is in keeping with discipline. If this perspective is to go beyond body,then man while still living amidst all comforts thinks of ways and means of gettinghimself liberated of all these comforts. Thus, the right perspective implies inclinationtowards restraint. In fact, such an interest is aroused with the acquisition of right faithor samyak dar„an. The term samyak dar„an in Jain metaphysics implies seekingprotection with and having faith in the arihant, ascetics and religion. As one seeksshelter with them, there takes place a change in his inner perspective. Here attachmentwith body includes attachment with money, position, reputation, family and suchother things. Thus, he who has attraction for or attachment with position andreputation is indiscipli- ned and unrestrained. Attraction for position and status is alsoa form of attachment with body. He who is fully inclined towards or attached withbody, his implicit and explicit efforts will be towards the means of fulfillment ofbodily requirements and comforts. Comfort of body does not merely mean providing for its food and sexual needs.Wealth, position, reputation, family and such things are also related with this.Whenever somebody comes to search you out with your name on his lips, whom willhe find out? Of course, he will find out your body because the name, etc. have beengiven to your body. In this way, the desire to acquire position or status has actuallybeen considered the basis of indiscipline. Such a person will ever be on the look out asto how his status or honour increases in society. That is why an ascetic has beenadvised to give up all kinds of desires.
  • 79. CHAPTER XVIII VOWS FOR LAYMEN AND ASCETICS The a‡uvrat (a‡u = small; vrat = vows; in Jain tradition they are vows forlaymen) and mahÈvrat (mahÈ-great; vows = vrat; in Jain tradition they are vows forascetics) repeatedly remind us of our nature because all the five mahÈvrat constituteour nature. It is like when we remember someone, our mind instantly goes to him. Aswe remember a particular place or an event, our mind instantly goes to that place or tothat event. Likewise these five great vows constitute our nature. As we time and againbecome aware of these, we each time return to our nature.What is Vrat? First of all, it must be understood that vrat is not a compulsion. Observing vrat isnot like following the rules and regulations prescribed by society or nation. It is alsonot a tradition which we must follow blindfolded. It is also not somethingself-imposed on our own selves. It is also not a check on mind. Then what is it? The word vrat implies awareness. It is a kind of practice of remaining in a stateof awareness and consciousness each moment, all the time. This is the central point ofall vrats, and it is this feeling which we have expressed in different ways and forms.The first vrat or vow is ahimsÈ or non- violence. Jain scriptural literaturesays-Ètmavrat sarvbhÊ- teshu, i.e. all contain the form like mine. That is not someonedifferent, but that is my form. The sense of friendship or fraternity that is born of suchrealization is my nature. Thus, the observance of the vow of ahimsÈ means remainingaware of the violence being committed in our life in the form of mind, word and body.It implies being conscious or aware about that and to look at that with the sense ofknower and observer only. In the light of awareness, violence will automatically getweak and thus become harmless. Our nature is non-violence, and it will come out ofits own. For example, ahimsÈ also means a realization of non-differentiation. It wouldmean all are like me, and that I am within all. On the contrary, himsa or violencemeans feeling of differentiation. He is different from me. In this way, the vow ofahimsÈ would mean to remain awake or aware of violence being committed all thetime, every moment in our life through thought, word and deed. These external vowsand commitments repeatedly make us aware of our nature. To remain idle and inattachment has become our second nature since generations. Thus, it is necessary towake us up time and again, and this job is done for us by these vows andcommitments. For example, a thought just occurred to a man or someone by the wayasked him that he had to take care of that garden. That fellow will take care of thegarden, but even if he becomes negligent and does not care about it, it is all right withhim because taking care of the garden is not his own idea, his commitment. It is justpossible that one day he gets more attached/involved in something else and in thatstate of unawareness he forgets about the garden. However, if that fellow takes a vowor makes a commitment, he will try to ever remain awake to take good care of thegarden. Even if at some given moment he becomes lethargic or becomes attached tosomething else, his commitment will make him aware of his duty. Memory of commitment makes man conscious again. Thus, these externalcommitments help us remain aware and also make this awareness constant andcontinuous. It is a sort of endeavour for constant meditation.
  • 80. What is important here is awareness and the sense of witnessing. Whenever we,under the influence of our old karmas, are attracted towards violence, we must notlook at our karmas with hatred and repulsion. Are hatred and enmity-may they betowards one’s own self or towards others-not a form of violence? If we adopt an attitude of violence towards violence, it adds to violence. Thus,we must not adopt a feeling of hatred or enmity towards it, rather we should, withouttaking any decision with our mind, just remain awake. We have to become knowers.This is also what we call forgiveness. Forgiveness means getting free from our oldkarmas and coming back to nature. Forgiveness is not a theoretical give and take. It isthe natural self consequence of being careful not to show anger, enmity and violence. The same is true of truth. Truth means accepting what is and as it is. In simplewords, my utterance are in confor- mity with my experience. To maintain uniformityamong mind, speech and action is truth. This is also called yathÈkh- yÈta. This is ournature, but generally man strays away from his nature. Anger, fear, laughter, sensuouspleasure and wonder all are the different effects of untruth. As and when man enterstruth, he becomes aware of all these. The same can be said about usurpation, i.e. the desire to possess another’spossession without the latter’s consent or permission. Brahmcharya or celibacy is thefourth vow: here brahm means pure consciousness. The attraction through love andlust for something beyond this pure consciousness is an antonymn of brahmcharya.Giving up sensuous attraction and loving acceptance of pure consciousness isbrahmcharya. Everything has its own identity. Try to assert your own right over that identity, toassert your own ownership of that identity, to consider that thing your own is anuntrue feeling and is called parigrahi. In this way, the root of our all non-vows is ourattachment, falsehood and attraction. In simple words, we can call it unconsciousnessor unawareness. On the other hand, the root of all vows is awareness, witnessing andknowledge. Five great vows and five small vows are the name of our awarenesstowards these five after-effects. And, in these five consequences are inherent all thetrends and effects, both subtle and gross, external and internal, of entire life.
  • 81. CHAPTER XIX FAST AND DIET Fast, called vrat in Hindi, is the other name of one’s constant awareness of one’scommitment. Constant cons- ciousness, awareness without any lethargic lapse. Incase, there is a moment of lethargy, one must remain fully conscious of it as well. Tomaintain such an awareness, the body requires food which does not produceexcitement, evil thoughts, unequanimity and dullness. 1. Excitement: It means flow of impulses and passions, a great tumult or agitation in the body, fast pace of thoughts in mind. One must not take that kind of diet which produces this sort of excitement. 2. Evil thoughts: The kind of food which produces evil thoughts in body just as taking together a milk product with pulses. One can take mÊ×gi or mÊ×g but not the horse bean. 3. Unequanimity: Every person has his own nature. Each one must be mindful of his nature. It is according to this nature that body and mind are bound. Thus, if the diet is taken in accordance with the nature, it absorbs in the body and mind quite easily. If food is taken contrary to the nature, unequanimity will in consequence will be produced. 4. Dullness/Laziness. The diet which produces lethargy or laziness, which adds to the weight of body and mind and which makes concentration difficult. Such a diet must be avoided. Apart from this all, the diet which provides truth to body, which is devoid of allevil thoughts and which is in keeping with the nature and which ever providesinspiration to body and mind should always be taken. These are some commonthoughts about diet.
  • 82. CHAPTER XX IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT MEDITATION [Process-The way to meditation is Guru-oriented. In the three-day meditationcamp complete training is given, in collective form. Thus, all those desirous ofattending are welcome to take part in the camp.]Duration of Meditation For each novitiate, it is necessary that he meditates at least twice daily. Eachsitting should be of one hour. In the beginning, for five minutes utter the word omwith deep breathing. For the following fifty minutes, he should concen- trate andmeditate . The last five minutes should be given to pious friendship. In this way,meditation should be done twice daily, both in the morning and in the evening. Question: If one fails to meditate twice, can one sitting do? If one fails tomeditate for one hour in one sitting, can a duration of less than one hour do? Answer: As you are told, you must meditate twice daily. If you still fail todevelop this much dedication and commitment for meditation or if you find it difficultto make time for meditating twice, then in rare circumstances you must meditate atleast once daily or for as much time as you can possibly devote to it. As they say, it isalways better to do something than doing nothing.When to Meditate? There is no set or fixed time for meditation. Whenever you have the time andwhat time suits your daily routine is good for meditation. Still it will be far better, if atime is fixed for this purpose. If it is the same time daily, it helps in concentrating.However, if you are unable to meditate daily at a fixed time, it is good to meditate anytime that suits your convenience. Whether meditation should be done before taking food or after two-three hoursof taking food. The time before sunrise and after sunset is the best for this.Place for Meditation Meditation can be done at any place, but it will be better if it is a lonely place,devoid of all kinds of insects, is clean and airy , and is free from any kind of obstacles.This helps one in concentrating. If you sit at one fixed place daily for meditation, it isstill better. If you fail to find a lonely place for meditation, it is still possible tomeditate.Why to Meditate? We meditate because we have to. If you have any expectations in mind duringmeditation, you will not be able to concentrate. Mind will remain stuck in thatexpectation. For example, I have to meditate because I need peace of mind. In thatcase, your mi nd will ever be waiting for peace and you will not be able toconcentrate. Thus, we should meditate hoping for no expectations or results.Meditation and Diet As we had told you certain specific things about diet during the camp and youhad also experience that kind of diet, you should now, when you are back at home, try
  • 83. to avoid rÈjsik and tÈmsik food and instead go in for satvik food. this will help you inyour meditation. During the camp we had also done some yogic exercises. Now asyou go home, you must not, at least for a week, take peppers, fried food , sweets orthat kind of rich diet. If you do not abide by this, it might have an adverse effect onyour health. It will be especially useful for your health if after that you remain on fastat least once in a week. In case you fail to remain on fast for a day, then you should atleast eat very simple food only once . If you could remain silent and aloof for that day,it will be very useful.Collective Meditation Whenever you have the time, you must involve yourself in collective meditation.In the collective meditation, an individual gets the moral support and encouragementfrom other participants. Inspiration and determination to meditate increases. If thereare more than one persons in a family wanting to meditate and they all daily sittogether for meditation at one time and if it is not possible daily then at least once aweek they should sit together to meditate, this will increase the peace and happiness inthe family and bring added concentration in meditation. Mutual problems get easilyresolved. Try your best to arrange for a three-day or two-and-a-half day meditationcamp like this every six months.Meditation and Service There are two aspects of life. One is personal meditation and the second isimpersonal, that is service unto others. Both the aspects enjoy equal importance. AsPt. Ravi Shankar has said, šMeditation increases the feeling of love which providesencouragement and inspiration for service. Through service one earns pu‡ya whichadds to the depth of meditation.› Therefore, as and when it is possible, you must cometo render service in such meditation camps. To persuade and encourage someone tocome and attend such a camp is also a kind of service. As we provide food in charityto someone, it fills the belly of someone; as we give clothes in charity to someone, itresolves the clothing problem for a few days of someone. The alms of food andclothes is something good, but the best and the noblest is the alms of dharma becausethis shows him the way to absolve himself of all of his pain and suffering. Thus, everycamper here must take the credit of persuading others for such camps and thus earnthe highest merit. In this way, you can also arrange such a camp in your area. If youthink you cannot arrange independently a meditation camp, then you can at least helpin the arrangement of such camps. It has been through the cooperation and inspiration of such numerous personswho came for the meditation camps that the Sri Sarswati Vidya Kendra wasestablished in the holy city of Nasik. There is a dire need of such centres throughoutIndia. You all should dedicate yourselves with your body, mind and wealth for theestablishment of such centres.Meditation for Self Here we have experienced and practiced omkÈr, yogÈsanas, yogic practices,meditation and pious friendship. As you go back home from this camp, you shouldpractice on these as you have been directed during the camp. Never practice thesamkhya prakshalan on your own. This can prove harmful.
  • 84. You have learnt all these practices for yourself. Never try to teach any of these tosomeone else as this will prove harmful to both of you. We wish you to preach thisknowledge, but for this purpose it is necessary that you take proper training, showproper commitment and give enough time.Meditation and Yogic Postures Any yogÈsanas should be done either before taking food or three orthree-and-a-half hours after taking food. During these practices, you should haveloose clothes and you should have cushioned seat.How to do yogÈsanas? 1. slowly and determinedly; 2. consciously; 3. with a feeling of piety; It is good if you are able to do the yogÈsanas daily. Otherwise, you must do so atleast twice or thrice a week. It is useful to do yogÈsanas before meditation, but it isnot a fixed rule. One can also do yogÈsanas after the meditation. After you go home from this camp and you have any physical or mental problemor if you have any kind of problem in regard to meditation or yoga, you shouldconsult only your guide. Never try to find a solution from a book. Also, if you try tofind a solution to you problem through the help of some other fellow camper, thechances are that the problem will get complicated instead of getting solved. Therefore,it is always best to get in touch with your guide. In case it is not possible to meet theguide, you can also get in touch with him through correspondence.
  • 85. CHAPTER XXI SOME ALLIED CAMPS Along with the meditation camps, camps for self-study (self-study camps) andcamps for children’s training are the dire need of modern times; in fact, modern worldexpects this of us. Therefore, we arrange such camps also off and on. In fact, both theself-study camp and the children’s training camp are allied with the meditation camps.Through the medium of these camps, one becomes eligible to go for the meditationcamp.Self-study Camp This is the first allied camp of the Meditation Camp. Lord Mahavira has shownus the ideal of way of self-study and meditation for man’s spiritual development.Self-study here is not limited to the study of scriptures alone, rather it implies thatalong with the study of the sayings of the tÏratha×karas as they are found included invarious Ègams, we should also experience it through internal practice and acquireright knowledge in this behalf. In other words, it implies the study of self through thesayings included in the scriptural literature and the right knowledge of what isincluded in the scriptures comprising the five parts of it, i.e. vÈcana, etc. The rightstudy of soul is also a kind of self-study.Format of Self-study Camp 1. Duration: A self-study camp is of ten days and it involves three hours daily at any time of the day. 2. Every novitiate wanting to attend the camp is required to come daily for this purpose. 3. A minimum of fifty people must attend the camp for it to be viable.Subject  Pronunciation of the Namokar mantra, form and understan- ding of the Maha mantra;  Form and understanding of prayer/eulogy;  Form of religion and its understanding;  Form of the religion of an ascetic and its understanding;  The nine tatvas and their understanding;  Concept of Samayak and Pratikraman and their understanding;  Concept of internal and external austerities and their understanding;  The twelve vows and their understanding;  Practical form of meditation; and  Practice, Inspiration and Criticism. The above-mentioned topics are especially taught in these camps.Children’s Education Camps
  • 86. The child-life should develop into a beautiful, compe- tent and strongpersonality. Such a camp is aimed at providing an atmosphere which is conducive forthe above development. During this camp, the children are made to practice especiallythe following things. Besides they are so taught about these things that in future thesebecome an integral part of their life. 1. Prayer: Concept and significance 2. YogÈsanas: Concept, practice and significance 3. PrȇÈyÈma: Concept, practice and importance 4. Right diet: Form and importance 5. Meditation: Form, Practice and Importance 6. Understanding of the responsibility towards parents, teacher, family, society, nation and the world, under- standing of relations with them and understanding of right behaviour with them. 7. Oratory: Practice and Experiment 8. Importance of nature and understanding of its beauty 9. Knowledge of the theory to make life more organized.Age Factor From 7 years to 13 years. Duration: Three hours daily for the first eight days and the entire day, withresidence, during the last two days.Place The hall should be peaceful and airy; there should be arrangements/space forlodging during the last two days; and arrangements for food.
  • 87. CHAPTER XXII EXPERIENCES OF THE CAMPERS Every human being is restless either in body or in mind. Respected ¶chÈrya ShivMunijÏ has found a resolution of this problem through the medium of this meditation.In this camp, I could understand the form of meditation and the practical methodologyof actionlessness. Listening to the form of prȇa, I could understand further the veryconcept of soul. For the glory and development of the ƒrama‡ Sa×gh, this attempt ofthe ¶chÈrya will always be written in golden letters. Our ¶chÈrya tradition began with¶tmÈ RÈm and going on through Anand Muni and Devendra Muni has now reachedus presently in the person of Shiv Muni. The present ¶chÈrya is the very embodimentof ƒiva and will sure ameliorate our condition. With auspicious sense I heartily thankSri Sirish Muni, who actively assisted him in this meditation camp. ²Dr RajendraMuniJourney to Non-Word This was the first opportunity for me to meditate as per the original practice ofmeditation of Lord Mahavira. As a result of this meditation camp, several of myinflows got decreased and I found the way to self-realization. As I went deeper anddeeper inside, the feeling of joy went on increasing. In fact, I do not have the words toexpress this experience that was beyond imagination. This was a journey to thenon-word. ²Sri Tarik Rishi MaharajLet it go on and on I had been listening of the meditation camp for the last several years. But thiswas my first opportunity to be a part of this camp. This helped me concentrate. Thisprovided so much peace to my mind and body as I had never experienced before. Itwas my heart-felt wish that this camp goes on and on for ever. ²Sri Dinesh Muni MaharajJoy Filled the Heart This camp proved to be of great use to me. The physical activities here made mefeel very light. I had pain in my heel for the last ten years, and this pain was now gonecompletely. The meditation filled the heart with bliss. For the first time the practicalknowledge of separation between body and soul dawned on me. Mind felt fully atpeace. ²Sri Naresh Muni MaharajBeyond Expression The meditation camp made me feel endless bliss which it is not possible for meto put in words. ²Sri Surendra MuniEssence of Meditation Bliss giving moment appeared as a palyopam. In the posture of KÈyotsarga I feltsome pain in sitting with no attachment to the body on the very first day ofmeditation. To concentrate your attention on breathing was irksome. During the
  • 88. student life I had read that human mind is playful and fickle, but clearly experiencedthe same during this camp. However, Sri Sirish Muni, who is an embodiment ofaffection and who lectured on meditation, gave us the right method to make body andmind stable. Soon mind was full of thoughtlessness. With a mysterious soundsurrounding me I felt the presence of a ring-shaped protective chakra. The discoursegiven by the Acharya set at rest all the questions relating to meditation. I feel that Ihave achieved the essence of meditation.²Sri Suyogya RishiGolden Moments of Life I find myself incapable of putting into words the feelings I experienced duringuseful camp. Will a deaf man be able to explain the taste of sugar-candy if we ask himfor it after putting a piece of it in his mouth? I find myself in a similar situation. Thefeeling of friendliness that I experienced was better than even what I might have felton the day forgiveness. These three days were the golden period of my life. I cannotsay anything more than this. ²Sri Manibhadra Muni jiInvaluable Achievements During these three days of the camp, I achieved five invaluable things: (i) physical stability; (ii) mental stability; (iii) disease- less body; (iv) tensionlessmind; (v) priceless discourses given by the Acharya. I wish I could spend each remaining moment of my life in the company of theAcharya and continue diving deep in the depths of meditation. ²Sri RupendraMuniUnique Experience This meditation camp proved to be very useful for the purification of body andmind. Purity of diet affected our body and mind. One thing that I realized was thattaste lies not in food but in the hunger you feel. I could also understand thesignificance of the discipline of meditation for the mental peace and purification. Theproblems of acidity and backache also subsided. I understood the importance of themeditation of Lord Mahavira. I had this feeling only when I developed loving attitudetowards all. I also realized that ‘peace is my nature’. During the friendly atmosphere Ifelt a strange sensation running through my body. Tears of bliss flowed down myeyes. My self-confidence which had for some reason been shattered was once againgot stabilized. If I put in straightforward language I came here against my wishes, butnow I go back home against my wishes. From this one could imagine how attractiveand attracting this camp is. ²Mahasati Sadhvi Sri Archna Kunwar ‘Mira’Nectar of Panacea After attending the meditation camp I realized that meditation is necessary notonly for physical and mental purification but it is also a nectar which works aspanacea for all diseases of body. My blood pressure remained normal without anymedicine. I could also feel a sound sleep. I am healthy and I feel satisfied. ²Mahasati Shiva ji (a 70-year-old lady) On the first day of the camp, I was wondering why have I come here, but thevery next day I got so engrossed that I began wondering why was the camp limited
  • 89. only to three days. It would have been much better had it been of ten days duration. Iachieved the art of disciplining mind (thought), word and deed. All evil and lethargywas gone. Consciousness of non-evil grew. The yogÈsanas were quite useful to thebody. I used to have a lot of pain in the waist early in the morning. During the days ofthe camp, it was quite negligible. I achieved the art of making every moment of liferelevant and useful. I did not feel like going away from the camp. Now my confidencehad become stronger that we also could meditate and concentrate. The credit for allthese experiences and achievements goes to my spiritual preceptor, the Acharya,because it was due to his inspiration that I could attend the camp. ²Mahasati Aradhana Kunwar ji This meditation and meditation camp is the best way for bringing aboutorderliness of time, importance of meditation and increasing concentration. Duringthe camp I felt that we were approaching Lord Mahavira and his meditation. I couldfeel within the constant flow of meditation and physical purity. I came to know of theprimordial form of soul and experienced the art of living life. ²MahasatiSri Kanchan Kunwar I felt mental peace, subdued evils and the unity of within and without. I couldexperience the unique experience of meditation through the discourses of theAcharya. I cannot explain this experience in words. Some of my physical ailmentswere also partly cured. ²Mahasati Ratanjyoti We were wandering out for the achievement of comfort, peace, bliss and health.The treasure of this immense and unbreakable power is inherent within us. During thiscamp I got the key to that treasure. ²Mahasati Sri SanyamprabhaThe ¶chÈrya Deserves TÏratha×kar Gotra I got the method and manner of how to live life. The feelings of wrath, pride,mÈyÈ and greed got considerably subdued, and I hope they will get further subdued. Ihad a feeling of sending my entire family to attend the meditation camp. At the sametime I also felt that this knowledge, comfort and joy should reach all mankind. Withthe help of pranayama and pure diet automatically eradicate numerous physicalailments. I feel a special kind of agility and my mind is at peace. Attachment towardsworldly things and allurements has lessened. My mind is overjoyed at the friendlyenvironment created by the Acharya. The feelings of jealousy and fun and frolic havedied down. In their place, the feeling of love originated as a result of which Èrtra andraudra dhyÈna got lessened. The practice and method of meditation which theAcharya has developed after deep exploration and constant concentration of fifteenlong years will go a long way in helping the world. The feelings of cordiality andfriendliness will develop throughout the world. The Acharya has certainly determinedto attain tÏrathankar gotra by creating a feeling of love in each human heart. This iswhat at least I feel. ²Hastimal Munot (Chairman, Jain Conference)My Life-Style Got Changed It was for the first time in my life that I took part in a meditation camp based onJain tenets. During this camp, we were made to do some yogÈsanas which arenecessary for physical welfare. During these three days, I lived as an observer.My entire life style got changed. What I had failed to get during the last fifty years, I
  • 90. got during these three days. Maximum number of such camps should be organized sothat maximum number of people can get the benefit and learn to live the life in theright manner. ²Radheshyam Jain (Chairman, Jain Mahasabha, Haryana)Greetings I know Acharya Shiv Muni for several years. Several years before he rose to theposition of the Yuva Acharya and then the Acharya, when I met him for the first timeI developed a feeling of faith in him. I had had the glimpses of a true yogi and truesaint in the Acharya during my very first meeting with him. My mind was made atthat very moment Shiv Muni is the only saint who can successfully show the path tothe Jain ascetics and lay believing Jains. At the Pune Jain Conference I saw myconvictions taking real shape. I felt overjoyed. Even as he continued to rise in statusand reputation, he also continued to constantly delve deeper into his studies. He wouldcarry out the Sangh responsibilities successfully and efficiently and at the same timecontinued to carry out the preaching and spread of meditation. Constant meditationhas made the Acharya innocent like a child. As says a Jain scriptural text, it is in aheart purified by simplicity and innocent that religion/dharma resides. The Acharyahas become an embodiment of this idea. Simplicity and truth constitute his life andbreath. I have got several opportunities to take part in meditation camps organizedunder the care of the AchÈrya. I can proclaim with full confidence that allcomplexities of my life are gone. I have learnt through the art of meditation to remainpeaceful and calm even in adverse circumstances. I has been with this right inspirationof the Acharya to take this message of meditation, this art of remaining calm andpeaceful in adverse situations to each home that a meditation centre has been set up atNasik. Thousands of brothers and sisters participate in meditation camps here andbecome witness to their souls and also learn the art of living life. I consider this great contribution of the Acharya as the greatest property of mylife. I wish and pray that this wealth of meditation should become the property of eachbeing. ²Shantilal Indrachand Duggar (Nasik) This camp has been something unforgettable for me. During this camp I learntthe art of living life. During my stay in the camp I never felt the lack of affection. In away, everybody else in the camp was stranger to me but during these three-and-a-halfdays we got so attached to one another as if I had been related to them very closelyand for long. The help and cooperation given by Sri Sailesh and Sri Sadhna was ofgreat help and value. I consider my life a success because of this camp. ²DeepakGoyal, Delhi I felt peace of body, mind and soul after my heartily participation in themeditation camp. I got the inspiration to spread love among mankind. I realized theimportance of meditation and austerities in life. My mind got purified after I soughtforgiveness from all beings. I got the encouragement to smilingly face any sort ofsituation. I was shown the right path in life as I listened to the phrase ‘My welfare liesin the welfare of all’ from the lips of the Gurus who have been an epitome of truth. ²Sameer Jain, Rohini
  • 91. The kind of peace and concentration that I experienced in this environmentduring these three-and-a-half days was never experienced by me before in my life. Itmight have been my good luck or the result of some past good karmas that I had theopportunity to participate in this camp. Mind experienced concentration during thecamp, and I felt a beautiful sense of peace. ²Atul Jain, Delhi My experience of the meditation camp has been somewhat strange and different,and it does not seem possible to put that in words. Through this I achieved immensespiritual knowledge which I had not got during my past so many years. I had achievedthis neither from my parents nor from my school or college. This experience can befelt only by one who had been to such a camp. I enjoyed each and every moment ofthe camp. Each moment was filled with different kind of knowledge such asdiscipline, about diet, daily routine, etc. This wonderful feeling will ever remain withme till my end. ²Smt. Bhanu Jain, Delhi I felt the realization of my identity and got introduced with my self. I also gotrelieved from small mental disturbances. I got the key to make human life a success.After participating in the seven-day camp, I never feel lonely . Whenever I am alone,my mind is with me. I realized this practical form the reality of meditation. I alsorealized the importance of complete surrender to the Guru. Now the long journey hasstarted and I know the way. ²Ritu Jain, Trinagar I had wished to know how to meditate for the last several years, butunfortunately never came across an opportunity for the fulfillment of this wish. OnceMahasati Anupama Ji happened to visit us for the chÈturmÈsa (four months of therainy season). I asked here about meditation and concentration, she advised me toattend the camp. As I came to the camp, I here had a glimpse of my late Guru. Itseems as if I had purified my body, mind and word. ²Manu Jain, Arihant Nagar I felt great joy during the camp. I had some knowledge about meditation, butnow I learnt as to where I was wrong. I realized that to remain awake and consciouseven while being inactive and inert in body, mind and speech is real meditation. Icould now understand our faults with regard to diet. I got the inspiration for spiritualpeace, silence and austerities. I express my feelings of great debt and gratitudetowards Sri Sailesh and Sri Sadhna that they made me what I am today. ²SushmaJain, Arihant Nagar
  • 92. APPENDICES Appendix I SOME ORDINARY RULES FOR YOG¶SANAS1. It is necessary to put a blanket or some other heavy cloth on the floor for yoga practice. To perform yogic practice without any such cloth beneath can prove to be harmful.2. The dress should be light and loose.3. Yoga should be done about three and a half hours after taking food, and after about one and a half or two hours if the food taken is light. After completion of the yogÈsanas, one must relax for about five to ten minutes before taking food.4. Yogic practice can be done any time in the morning or in the evening.5. YogÈsanas should be done when mind and body are one. If body is quite tired or mind is quite upset, then shavÈsana should be done first of all for about five to ten minutes. Thereafter should follow the normal practice.6. If you feel very tired or if you experience a lot of pain in any part of body while doing yogic exercises, relax for a while before you go for the completion of the remaining part.7. Never go for yogic exercise after only reading about it in a book and without the consent of your teacher. FIVE IMPORTANT RULES FOR YOG¶SANAS1. While doing yoga, each activity of body should be slow and stable. Each yogic posture should be slow just like the slow-moving tortoise-slow and steady wins the race. There is always a possibility of harm when rashness comes in any bodily activity.2. Remain fully conscious while doing yoga just like a snake. Like the snake again, during the yogÈsana, remain fully conscious of feelings being experienced from the bodily activities and from breathing in and out. Where your attention goes, energy follows. Thus, more conscious you remain, the more useful it will be for you.3. You should be inactive and inert during yoga just as an elephant even when it walks it retains its natural poise. Do not give any jerk or jolt. Each activity should be native and innate. Perform the Èsanas but in an effortless manner, in a tensionless state.4. Perform the yogÈsanas gracefully just as there is grace, a kind of richness in the gait of a lion. Our yogic exercises should similarly be graceful.5. The yogÈsanas should be done in piety. As you perform this, there should be the piety of a saint within. (Courtesy : The discourse delivered by SrÏ Ravi Sha×kar)
  • 93. Appendix II ACHARYA SAMRAT DR. SHIV MUNI JI MAHARAJA Brief Profile ¶chÈrya SamrÈt Dr. Shiv Muni Ji MahÈrÈj now heads and leads the Jain„rama‡ sa×gh. Detachment, austerity, enlightenment and meditation are the fourpillars of his pious life lived in equanimity. His mind is ever in quest of knowledgeand engrossed in meditation. There are numerous responsibilities of the „rama‡sa×gh which he as being at the helm of affairs in the hierarchy carries out in a quiet,natural and proficient manner, but along side this he is ever on the move upward onthe path to spiritual progression. Shiv Muni was born in a very affluent and respectable Oswal family of a smalltown called Malout in the Malwa region of the Punjab. By the time he entered theuniversity for higher education, he came to be known for his sharp intellect and hispower of comprehension. He passed each of his examination, from the primary to theuniversity, in the first division. He had nurtured an intense desire to know and realize truth ever since hischildhood. His education in the colleges and the university could not satiate hishunger for truth, rather the acquisition of higher academic knowledge furtherintensified his desire for higher spiritual knowledge, During his student life hetravelled far and wide throughout America, Canada, England and several othercountries. The wealth and material comforts of wordly life failed to tempt and bindhim. Then he turned towards studying the faith of his family, the Jainism. He made athorough study of the life, utterances and teachings of Lord MahÈvÏra. This stirred hisinner self and he made a firm resolve to renounce this worldly life and take to the lifeof an ascetic. Of course, there were many emotional pressures from the family and friends, butnothing could dissuade him from his resolve. And, as it happens in the case of allgreat men, his resolve was not uncalled for. It was this resolve, which was in future togive to the „rama‡ sa‡gh a dynamic and enlighted spiritual leader. He entered the„rama‡ sa×gh as a disciple of Gain Muni Ji, well known Jain scholar and exegete andhimself a disciple of Acharya¶tmÈ RÈm Ji. Shiv Muni Ji made an intensive study of Jain philoso- phy and theology. He gothis doctorate from the Punjabi University, Patiala, on the topic of šDoctrine ofLiberation in Indian Religions, with special reference to Jainism›. A study of thisdisseration, since available in book form, would reveal to any reader the authors depthof understanding as well as his insatiable thirst for more and more knowledge. After a few years of his initiation into the „rama‡ sa‡gh, Shiv Muni Ji planned,as per the directives of his Guru, to travel throughout India preaching Jain tenets. ShivMuni sojourned through the interiors of Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh,Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Orissa, TamilNadu, Gujarat and other states. Wherever he visited, people welcomed him and likedhis personal piety and simplicity of life. It was during this sojourn that in 1990 the„rama‡ sa‡gh selected him as its first YuvÈ ¶chÈrya.
  • 94. One could see him apparently travelling from village to village in different partsof the country, but in reality he was constantly on the upward move of his spiritualjourney. Through the medium of meditation, he went deeper and deeper. During thecourse of this inward sojourn, he had wonderful experiences of truth and he seems tohave proved that even in this era one could realize the truth and live the truth. Presently, Shiv Muni Ji has been busy preaching and spreading the higherknowledge through meditation: it is through this medium that he has himself lived thetruth. Thousands of people have benefited from this endeavour of ¶rchÈrya. Demandshave constantly been pouring in from all over the country for holding meditationcamps. The Jain world considers itself fortunate to have as its spiritual leader a personwho is so entlighted, so austere and simple and so given to meditation. A Brief Resume of Acharya Shiv Muni JiPlace of Birth : Malout, District Muktsar, PunjabDate of Birth : 18 September, 1942 BhÈdo× sudÏ sevenMother : Mrs. Vidya Devi JainFather : Mr. Chiranji Lal JainCaste/Varna : Vai–ya, OswÈlFamily : Bhaba‚eInitiation : 17 May, 1972Place of Initiation : Malout, PunjabReligious Teacher : Shri GiÈn Muni Ji MaharajDisciples : Shri Shirish Muni Ji, Shri Shubham Muni Ji, Shri Shiyas Muni Ji, Shri Suvrat Muni Ji, Shri Shalin Muni Ji, Shri Shamit Muni Ji.YuvÈ ¶chÈrya : 13 May, 1987 at Pune Maharashtra ƒrama‡ Sa×gh AcharyaAppointment : 9 June, 1999 Ahmadnagar, MaharashtraChÈdar Mahotsva : 7 May 2002, New Delhi.Academic : M.A. in Philosophy and EnglishAchievements Literature, Ph.D., D. Litt.; Deep and thorough study of Jain scriptural literature; ?Distinct research work in Dhyan-Yoga Meditation. ShrÏ ShirÏsh Muni Ji MahÈrÈj : A Brief Introduction Shri ShirÏsh Muni Ji MahÈrÈj is one the prominent disciples of Acharya Dr. ShivMuni Ji MahÈrÈj. He for the first time came in contact with the Acharya during hisstay in Bombay (Khar) for the rainy days (chÈturmÈsa) of .1987. Sitting at the feet of¶chÈrya Shiv Muni Ji, he realized the importance of spiritual discipline andmeditation and took his teaching to heart, In fact, Shri Shirish Muni had then been ona business trip to Bombay from Udaipur : those were the days when he was settling
  • 95. down well in his business. However, reaching the pious presence of the ¶chÈrya hefelt that spirituality was the best trade he could carry out. There is no end, no apex ofthe wordly business whereas spirituality itself was the highest state. Thus he dedicatedhimself in the feet of the revered ¶chÈrya. After receiving the consent of his parents, ShrÏ ShirÏsh received initiation into the„rama‡ sa×gh on 7 May 1990 at Yadgiri in Karnataka. Prior to that, he remained forthree years as an apprentice disciple (vairÈgÏ) with the Acharya and learnt to tread thepath of spirituality under his guidance. After initiation, he went deeper and deeper inmeditation. Simultaneously, he continued to acquire academic knowledge andacquired proficiency in HindÏ, English, Sanskrit and PrÈkrit languages. The way hegives discourses attracts huge congregations. He is strongly in favour of socio-religious reformation and ever continues to persude people to work in this direction. Shri Shirish Muni Ji is a saint blessed with the qualities of humility, simplicityand service. He is very active in furthering the noble mission of meditation and self-study as initiated by the Acharya. He has been justifying his sainthood by workingselflessly for the amelioration of mankind. ShrÏ ShirÏsh Muni Ji MahÈrÈj : A Brief Bio-dataPlace of Birth : Nai, Udaipur RajasthanDate of Birth : 19 February 1964Mother : Mrs. SohanbaiFather : Mr. Khyali Lal KothariCaste/gotra : OswÈl, Ko—hÈrÏInitiation Date : 7 May, 1990Place of initiation : Yadgiri, KarnatakaReligious Guru : ¶chÈrya Dr. Shiv Muni Ji MahÈrÈjInspiration for Initiation : Grandmother Mohanbai KothariAcademic Qualification : M.A. in Hindi literatureReligious Study : Deep study of Jain scriptural literature; Study of Jain philo- sophy and thought; Proficiency in Hindi, Sanskrit, English, PrÈ- krit, MarÈ—hÏ, GujarÈtÏ langua- ges.Projects of Note : Organizing meditation camps; Efficient organization ofself-study camps and of educating the children; Helping the ¶chÈrya in all otherprojects/missions.