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Pujya Dr. K.C. Varadachari - Volume -1

Discourses on The Philosophy of Sri Ramchandra's Rajayoga -

Lecture -15

Today I shall speak about the preliminaries to meditation. Master speaks about the necessity of sitting in a particular posture and one of controlling the several limbs and sitting in a convenient one. The ancients have prescribed 'padmasana' or 'siddhasana' as the most efficacious for meditation purposes. That is to say that we are sitting just as to control all the forces of the body and naturally in this, concentration or attention on the object before us or in the heart is easy. We are not going to have discussion as to how far Asana is helpful for physical welfare. That point is for those who believe that the control of the body is the control of the mind. We believe, on the other hand, that the control of mind is the control of the body. That is why modern vyayama or hatha yoga practices are inversions of truth.

Secondly, in many of the systems, Padmasana is practiced. And then, to sit in that posture we have to fold in our feet and keep our back straight. It is stated that if the back is straight, God's grace will flow from above from the Brahma randhra down to the system steadily and smoothly. Some others have held that the Kundalini will be raised when the spine is erect as all the kundalini centres are placed on the spine. We do not believe in any of these things. We believe that it is natural to us and we do not believe that God's grace will flow down the spine or go up the spine. On the other hand whatever is helpful for meditation on the heart is correct.

Now meditation on the heart is very important as I have already stated, for it is the centre of circulation of blood and we know that most of our heart attacks are due to disturbances of the blood. There is a theory which was practiced or adumbrated in the west. A man's temperament depends upon the kind of blood that he has. Now if we understand this blood-relationship with our mind and also the ancient view that the seat of the mind is in the heart and not the head, then we have gone a long way to understand the technique of meditation on the heart. Once we sit in a particular place it is good, in fact we are adapted to a particular place, in a particular pose which is easy and not rigid. We do not try to compel the body because the reactions from the body later will be bad. We have to tune the body and not to keep it tight. That attitude is easy for effective meditation. Many of the abhyasis feel that meditation is a very arduous task. It will be arduous if you make it a strange thing for your system. But if you can take it in an easy way it will be good. Of course, I do not advise that we should lie down and do meditation. Some people have asked me the question whether they can lie down and meditate. What can I say? I consider it is not etiquette leave alone its necessity for a lazy fellow. All that I say is let us observe etiquette in regard to the high powers that we are inviting. That is proper meditation. Then we sit not in anxiety, not in fear, but seeking the life blood which will flow into our system. Then we are bound to be considerate about the power that comes to us. We should not be sluggish, lazy and should not come to meditation as if we are going to sleep, though some times we feel sleepy during meditation. In such cases what happens is that we are in meditation which is akin to sleep. But that is not sleep at all. Because that is a state of Prajna, where mind comes to rest and sense organs have come to rest. Now, when we get that state of mind we have developed that highest power which is similar to the state of the Ultimate. That is all so far as posture is concerned.

Secondly, you have to develop prayer. Our prayer is very important. Our prayer as stated by Master has only 3 sentences. It is not long, putting forth all the grievances and asking for all favours. It is not even a prayer for calmness, because calmness is not our goal. Calmness is an incentive and a preparation for reaching the goal. A man who is anxious or in trouble can never reach the goal. He can commit only more mistakes just as every student who goes to an examination knows that in his anxiety not to commit mistakes, actually commits more. So also in spirituality calmness is necessary but we cannot manufacture calmness by our effort. This is where we realize the human incapacity and that our will has a limitation and we want the help of God to give us that condition to connect us with Him. Now prayer is the request to God humbly and with an amount of humility that He should take up the work of Yoga or connection. And that is why in our prayer we call to God 'Thou art the real goal of Human Life'. We have fixed the goal. The goal is God or God's state. I fully emphasize 'God's state' is more important than God. For the attitude of becoming God has produced more asuras than Gods. A God's state will be attained by people who have actually arrived at His condition, a condition of absolute repose with God. That is why God's state is important than God. That is why we say, Thou art the real goal of human life. But there I would say only God's state. Because peace is considered to be the state of absolute perfection and we know that we cannot arrive at that condition unless our desires are removed. The desires which we have, the wishes which we obtain - are all opposed to our attaining, God because we are finite, limited and our aspirations are for small things and for Godly state. So we try our level best to get rid of these desires and wishes. We are slaves to them, because we obey our wishes and our wishes never obey us. That is why we say 'we are slaves of our wishes' and we are not able to escape from their bondage. The worst bondage that man suffers is from his wishes which command him to run about in the world to try to make money and desire pleasure and become slaves of those wishes. There could be no greater bondage than the bondage of pleasures which have become habits. So we have to get rid of that and the more we try to get rid of them the more they become our masters. Even in the great sanyasins who are said to have renounced their desires and all that, corruptitious wishes entered telling them that there is mankind and that they have to serve man. I believe God alone has that skill. We can serve individuals and ourselves to certain extent. And that is why we find that some of the greatest saints fell victims to the great desire of becoming Saviours of Humanity. Avatar is one of those things which they aim at and we may say an avatar is good. But it is a responsibility which a finite thing cannot get. So wishes in every form have to be surrendered, and I do not know how to surpass them. The more I try to throw them out the more subtle they enter into me. These desires can only be removed by God. So I have to request to God in my prayer 'please remove all the obstacles in my progress'. Some say desires are to be cured of egoism. But actually the cure of desire is God.

In our system, Master has stated, there are 11 circles of egoism and no person seems to have got rid of them without the help of God. If the worlds of maya are there, greater maya is egoism and that is why we have to get rid of these wishes once and for all. By our saying that we are giving up those wishes we do not help ourselves. It requires the work from within and that work God alone can do.

So we come to the last line of the prayer. 'Master thou art the only God and Power to bring us upto that State'. That is why I said that 'Thou art the real goal of human life' means 'Your condition of being transcendent to every wish or desire that breeds egoism and breeds bondage'. That is why in the last line we put the idea that Master is the only God and power to bring us upto that state. So this prayer when it is humbly told, involves surrender to God saying 'I surrender to God'. I have used my knowledge and have become blind. That is why our knowledge is our knowledge, because it breeds egoism it breeds desire. Our knowledge today is subservient to desire and instrument to desire, even as our consciousness. Therefore, this must be abandoned and we cannot abandon it merely by saying 'I have abandoned it'. Sloth is not equal to consciousness. Our giving up action does not produce liberation, because the knowledge which we are getting through our consciousness and through efforts of our own of the outer world or even of Gods is ego-centred. That is why we say that there is only that Supreme Being, the Transcendent Being, who is the origin of our existence who ought to be sought to bring us back to that condition which is fearless and desireless, and infinite. This prayer is absolutely necessary in our system.

Next comes a very important problem. Should I think that God in some form or should I think of Him without form? If we think about the God, I think it has to be formless. But if we think of Master, who is doing it I believe we have to have a form, the form of the Master. The difference is this, the God is transcendent but the Guru is one who has come down to help us and when this descent or avatar happens he takes up a form. That form would be mainly a form which makes it possible for the divine to conduct himself in our heart or pour out that force or that higher Pranahuti into us. So he takes that which is conducive to its being used for the purpose of connecting the individual soul with the Ultimate. Now that is no equivalent to the Guru. I should avoid the word Guru and say that it is Master who knows to put the energy into us or connect us with God in His ultimate state. So the Master in the Human form is a link, a living link between God and ourselves. In this system Master insists on this particular aspect. We advise at later stages when the faith has developed in us that we should meditate upon a human form. In the earlier stages one is reluctant to accept and it is reasonable for any person to ask 'how do I know that your Master has reached the Ultimate state'. We tell them that they may think about the Ultimate and pray to Him to come and help them. When He does come in the form in which we wanted we would ask him to appear in other forms. The worship of the transcendence and the impersonal or non-personal or non-form God is compelled at one stage to use or recognize a human personality who has come as the Person who can take us along with him. Now that is why the meditation on a real Master. One who actually connects us with the God is necessary. How do we know this capacity? Only by actual testing. There is no point in argumentation on whether a non-personal God is real and personal God is imperfect. Some say meditation in a personal God is not correct because the person is imperfect. In what sense is He imperfect? He may not be perfect because he has to eat, has to attend to his calls of nature, and has to attend to his duties. But is that the reason for our choosing Him as the object of our meditation? We choose him for the simple reason that he can connect us with God, can give us Pranahuti which is the transcending force which enters into our being, purifying us till we reach the state of merging with the Ultimate Being itself. If he can do that he is perfect, whatever may be his imperfections in other respects. A man may be a great scholar but a bad advisor in politics. He is great in one field but not so in all fields. A Master is a Master. If we expect him to be invulnerable, that he shall not be burnt, blown away and all the rest of the things. I think that is unreasonable. The limitation is limitation of man. We are all imperfect and the Divine takes a human body and yet connects us with the Divine. The idea is that it is possible for every imperfect being to connect himself with God and not say that it is impossible for us to connect with God. Many people tell me that it is not possible for us to connect ourselves with God and if one can do that he must be a godly person. But I am an ordinary man. We may be imperfect like anybody, but it is possible for us to connect ourselves with God and not only connect ourselves with God here and now but also to attain a state of God or His very condition even here and now. It is just possible.

Our people used to say Sri Rama incarnated as a man and took a vow that he shall appear like a man in this world. The idea is that we can become like Rama. But we have immediately made him a God, made him an entity and we never strove to become like him except for wrong things, perhaps listening to a foolish uncle or father or mother. And when Sri Krishna took the human body again he went about telling every body that he is a divine being appearing in the human form. It is possible for us to have a human appearance and divine functions. Yet we tried to say that Sri Krishna is different from us and with what cheek we want to love him? That is really a marvellous inconsistency. And that is why the worship of the Master in human form is admissible and perhaps counselled even when we believe that He is actually introducing the Divine Force and helping the Divine force to help us reach the Ultimate. The Divine evolution is set up by that introduction. That is why we consider in a limited sense any person to be a God who is capable of taking us to that stage. If he can take us to that stage he must be a God. Who can say whether he can take up to the higher stage? It is only we who should say this. I believe that my Master is such an example for the obvious reason that he has taken me to such a stage. I believe most of us have the experience with calmness even under limitations of our own consciousness and we find that desires are cut away by some subtle consciousness of the Ultimate. We would justify when thinking about our Master during Pranahuti as the person who is introducing this force and the supreme consciousness. But this is not a counsel for all. Ultimately the only Ultimate Master is God himself. But we have accepted God in the form of the Master. We may ask the question whether God in his own personality can help us. He can. But if a man has to be taken and man has to be convinced that man can become that, it is necessary for God to appear in the form of man or Guru or Human personality. But nature of personality will be really Divine. This is just to show that he has connection with the human by which human can be taken to its highest level. That is why I have to say that in meditation we can think about the Master as the person who is giving us the perfect life to reach a higher level. Now that would be a very important step in meditative process. Our whole idea is what we worship that we become. To meditate on Master who has reached that Ultimate being or perfect truth and who has merged himself in the Divine is necessary because we would become like him. 'Let me become like him' would be justified only when we worship God in that form by which he has been able to give us this new force of connecting with God himself and finally takes us to that position or His consciousness.