The Kailash Mansarovar yatra commences from Kathmandu, Nepal. Irrespective of where we came from, we all assemble at Kathmandu. We stayed in a palace converted into a hotel named Shanker hotel and the stay was very comfortable. Ours was a large group and all of us looked forward to what lay ahead of us.
Behind the buzz and excitement when I looked at the people a few questions raced my mind and I wondered to myself if they really knew why they were here. Were they really prepared physically and mentally to cover the distance, brave the unpredictable climate and the other hardships that one is expected to on a pilgrimage like this? Many of them looked out of focus to me to be honest. I introspected the situation for some time and then I consoled myself by deciding to let them all be and to let them get a grip of the situation on their own. I focused attention on myself and put my mind completely on attaining what I had come there for.
Now let’s move away from this thought for a while so that I may be able to explain the main point of the post and elaborate on a few thoughts more explicitly.
On a recent trip to Delhi for personal reasons, I chose to stay in Sri Aurobindo Ashram. I usually like to stay there not for the convenience it offers but primarily for spiritual gains one makes there. The meditation hall which had become old and weak had been reconstructed with a very strong building keeping the French style of architecture in mind. Irrespective of the condition of the building, the soul of the place has always been the same- very dynamic and powerful. I take advantage of this and it is no secret that it enhances my spiritual efforts to a great extent. It always adds something. I wish to share with you some pictures of the place so that if you are in Delhi, you may spend a few quiet moments of silence in the Ashram.
The hectic stay in Delhi gave me very little time to think or write anything. And most of the time I encountered people who I thought were so deluded that it made my life impossible. The only refuge was my inner sanctuary. I was holding a conversation with Sri Mahavatar Babaji mutely in my mind to stay calm and live in truth and reality. I prayed to him many a times during the day and night. One of the prayers made was that I should be able to commune with him all the time irrespective of the disorder and absurdity that I saw around me.
On the return journey home, I reached the airport many hours early so that I could do my prayers, meditation and contemplation in order to wipe out the disorderly and inharmonious movements of the people’s thought -vibrations that had been surrounding me for days. A startling episode took place the time I settled down in a chair with my luggage as I contentedly closed my eyes. As though Babaji was waiting for this opportune moment, he showered me with a cascade of thirst -quenching knowledge of self- realization. We had a very long communiqué between us over a period of a few hours . It comprised of everything that was going on in my mind and much more. All I could say to him was this-“You are the answer to all my prayers”.
A great deal of that exchange is written here for all of us to read and discern from the ocean of spiritual knowledge of salvation. It is for us to consider this, mull over the profound knowledge and then apply it in our lives. At this hour, as I finish my last words to complete this enlightening post, I pray to God to give us light and keen understanding and to eradicate our deep seated ignorance of many, many lives.
Cryptic questions and answers that took place between Shri Mahavatar Babaji and me mentally at the airport while I waited to catch the plane.
Q-Who gets enlightenment?
A- Those whose heart is pure.
Q-When and how can one clean and purify the heart?
A-When the intellect is pure. The intellect should be purified of ego, ignorance, jealousy, fear and all other insecurities.
Q-What is delusion?
A-Doubt, scepticism and confusion. When they cover the mind, the soul is in delusion.
Q-How do we eradicate delusion?
A-By cleaning the heart.
Q-How can the heart and mind/buddhi be purified?
A-By awareness, meditation, selfless activities, kindness and charitable actions.
Q-Why must we eradicate/remove delusion?
A-Because it gives us chains and recycles of birth and death.
Q-What happens in delusion?
A-When we are in delusion, a sort of mirage is created in the mind which in reality is a reflection of the true self-that is yatharth or reality. There is distortion of the vision. When we are covered with distorted perceptions, our actions are distorted. Our judgment goes wrong, we create wrong actions. The consequences of our actions are ours and hence we suffer adversely.
Q-How does one know that he or she is in delusion?
A-There will be bouts of confusion, temptations, frustration for having lack of control over things and most of all, one is uncertain.
Q-What are the correctional methods?
A-Introspection, reflection, contemplation, study of scriptures, listening to the ancient wisdom of the sages and realized entities. And most important of all- correcting your present actions to redesign the future life.
Q-How does one know that he or she is getting the wisdom from the right person?
A-If what you read or hear can be identified with and are convinced, if your mind accepts the mentor or guru’s wisdom and advice and counsel. If your mind does not oppose or contradict his or her knowledge and if you are applying the spiritual philosophy with positive results, then you have found your mentor or spiritual advisor.
Q-If there is a contradiction in mind, what does it apply?
A-It applies that it is the ego which is acting as a wall between the teacher and the learner.
To sum up, delusion is created when the dark clouds of the dark world cover the mind in the form of self-doubt, confusion and skepticism. To annihilate delusion, regular practice is required in the form of meditation. In meditation is involved- concentration, contemplation, reflection and thinking upon the idea and concept of God.
At an advanced stage, the yogi is able to receive solutions to all his problems, advice, plans for future and also thoughts about the nature of God effortlessly. The yogi at this stage does not require any special technique or method to bring his mind to a central point. His mind is completely absorbed and immersed in the Universal Spirit which is the guiding Voice and Light.
Delusion can never again cover the mind of an accomplished yogi because the darkness has been completely eradicated once and for all by divine wisdom. His nature is spiritual and not worldly at this stage. After this stage, the yogi has only one thing to practice- remembering God in every moment of wakeful state, with or without meditation. He reaches a stage where there is no effort as the layers of darkness and ignorance are wiped out completely. God in the form of knowledge, wisdom, love, peace and pure bliss manifests all the time.
Our nature is spiritual and divine. Our motto and aim in life is to discover this nature, achieve a higher state of divine consciousness and rid ourselves of all the consequences of ignorance and delusion. There are mental and physical suffering and pain in acts done with delusion. As we sow today, so we reap tomorrow. If we make an attempt today to uncover the spiritual nature and beget divine wisdom, we shall experience permanent peace and joy, a worriless state where we have God’s fountain of lasting peace and silence.
Om shanti, shanti, shanti om.