BEYOND THE MEASURE OF MAN
This Discourse was given by Shri Bal Bhagwan Ji, eldest brother of Guru Maharaj Ji, in Denver. Colorado on May 6, 1973.
Today I'll tell you something about energy, and what makes a man able to move. We all understand the scientific truth that nothing can move without the power to move. A table cannot move unless somebody moves it, and if it is in perpetual motion, it will continue to move until somebody stops it. So power, or what we call energy, is essential. The human body is moving; we are talking, we are listening. To listen we require energy, and to talk we also require energy. In both processes. energy is absolutely necessary. Now what that energy is, and how we can realize it. is a very important point. And this is a point that everybody has to realize for himself.
Once there was a man who had a big statue of a demigod called a Sheshnag who looks like a man with a long trunk like an elephant. And the man put some sweetmeats before the god and was worshipping him. But one day, while he was worshipping the god, suddenly a rat came and took the sweets. And the man thought, "Oh, this rat is more powerful than the god, because the god couldn't stop this rat." So after that he started worshipping the rat.
After some days, a big cat came and killed the rat. So the man thought. "Oh, the cat is much higher than the rat, because the rat couldn't save himself." So he started worshipping the cat.
One day a dog came, and you know that dogs chase cats, so this dog chased the cat, the cat ran away, and the man thought, "This dog is much more supreme than the cat,' so he started worshipping the dog.
And one day he was sitting in his house and that dog went into the kitchen. So his wife got upset, took her broomstick, and started hitting the dog. The dog ran away, and the man thought. "Oh. now I have realized that my wife is greater than the dog. because she can hit the dog!" So he started worshipping his own wife!
Now you know that in families there are troubles, there are quarrels and one day the man started quarreling with his wife and slapped her. And when he slapped his wife, he thought. "Oh. I am actually greater, because I can slap my wife. I am greater than all these things!"
And this is a point that we all have to experience, that we are greater than everything that we see around us. because we are we! Hut what are we? And who are we? These questions have always existed: saints came and always tried to analyze and solve this question, because many, many people have asked, "What ultimately is the Truth?"
Now, if we say that our bodies are living, that is wrong, because the body doesn't have the power to live. Something else is feeding it power. It's like a battery -- bulbs cannot glow unless you have a battery. The battery provides the power for the bulbs. Similarly, this body doesn't have power to walk around or hear or speak. There is something which, like the battery, acts in our bodies, and this gives power to these bodies to walk, to listen, and to do so many other things.
LIFE IS LIKE A SHADOW OF THE ULTIMATE REALITY.
Now if people do not understand that battery, they don't understand the meaning of life or the source of life, because the source actually is the battery.
Many people think that we are living because we are exhaling and inhaling. But dear friends, this is wrong. Once, in the Vedic age, some people experimented with this. They took a dead man, and by some machinery they pumped air into him and out of him. So as we would normally say, the man was breathing. But he was still dead!
As you know, in oxygen tents they put a mask on the man and he is breathing. The machine makes the lungs breathe. But suddenly something leaves him, and the machinery is still functioning, his lungs are still expanding and contracting, but the man is dead!
So there is something, a secret of breath, and every man who breathes has that power which is moving his breath up and down. And this power is called atma, it is called soul, and in different languages people call it by different names. But ultimately it is something which is in our breath.
In the Old Testament we read that God made man, and into that man He breathed life. This means He blew life into that man, and blowing is a process which everybody is doing. Everybody is blowing in air and blowing out air. So there is something hidden in this process which was transmitted, which was given to us by God.
Once Jesus Christ kept a fast for forty days. and the tempter came to Him and said, "You are hungry. Why don't you ask your God to turn all these stones in front of you into bread?" And Jesus said, "No, because man does not live on bread alone. but man lives on the Word which God utters in him."
People think that we live because we eat, but that is not correct. We are living because God is uttering a Word inside us. And what is that Word? Saint John says. "In the beginning was the Word." It means that in the beginning there was some energy which could create. Before the creation there was something which could create. "In the beginning was the Word, the Word was with Clod, and the Word was God." And that is the Word that we have to experience. Because before your beginning and before my beginning was the Word. And what is that Word?
Actually I am speaking certain words and you are hearing them. But what is actually happening? My vocal cords are vibrating, and your eardrum is also vibrating. So you hear the same thing that I speak. Actually, all the words that I am uttering are vibrations, so ultimately, the Word which existed in the beginning is also a vibration. And because that Word was existing before anything else existed, that Word is ultimately the primordial vibration, the eternal vibration, and it is that vibration which, when it leaves a man's body, makes a man dead.
Now many people say. "Oh, by our experience. by living life, by staying in this world we will hr able to experience that." But that's not true. Once a man came to Guru Maharaj Ji with a doubt. He wondered why a Guru was necessary. So Guru Maharaj Ji said. "Please go and bring me some water."
That man stood up, went into a kitchen and brought a glass of water. But Maharaj Ji said. "No, I don't want the glass. I just want water. Why are you bringing this glass?"
The man said, "But I cannot bring water unless I use a glass."
Maharaj Ji said. "No, no. I only want water. I don't want the glass."
Then the man was surprised.
And Maharaj Ji said, "To bring water you have to have the glass, because a glass can contain water. Similarly, the realized person contains Knowledge. He has that Knowledge, and you cannot have that Knowledge unless you have that glass, unless you go to a realized person. unless you go to an experienced person, unless you go to a Satguru. Sat means Truth, and unless you go to the Satguru you cannot have that Truth."
And this is why saints have come and gone, Saviors have come and gone, Gurus have come and gone, and what was their function? Their real function was to give this Knowledge to people, the Knowledge of the Word, the Knowledge of the primordial vibration. So it is a question. you see. Everybody who is living has a question, "What is lifeT' And you have to solve it yourself.
This whole world is like an examination hall. Everybody has a question, "What is life?" "What is the source of life'!' "What is the meaning of life?" Realize that point. Actually, life is just like a shadow of the ultimate reality. For instance, I am standing and casting a shadow on a wall. That shadow is just like life, because if there is no ultimate reality, no life can exist. So we are all trying to answer the question, "W hat is fife?" And in this world we have so many experiences, we think, "This is the ultimate reality," or "This is it." or "This is the final thing." But after sometime we experience. "No, this is not the ultimate. There is something beyond this."
People study physics, they do research in physics, but now they have a subject called paraphysics, which means something beyond physics. Like you have a ruler and with it you can measure things that have length. But if there is a thing with no length, it automatically becomes a subject of paraphysics, because you cannot measure it. So dear premiss, to understand something beyond, we have to go to is Guru.
Now I know, and you people in the West know it also. that many people practice mantras. But what arc mantras really? How did this mantra thing get started?
As you know, in India there have been many seers and sages, and there was a time when there were no papers, no tape recorders, no video machines; there was nothing to write on. So they used to sit and meditate on God, and they had to speak verbally about the experience that they were having. And the disciples used to sit and listen to that and try to learn it by heart, or as we say, they used to cram it, and that was called listening and remembering, or shruti and shmriti. So that is how mantras came into existence. But now we have hooks!
Actually. I think some of you must have studied the Gayatri mantra, Om bhur bhasva tat sat varnyam. Bhargo devasya dhimahi, Dhiraj o parchodyat. Now if you ask a guru, "Please tell me the meaning of this mantra," he will tell you it means, "Oh Light, I meditate on you." But if you are
EVEN THOUGH YOU ARE SMALL …
just a little sensible you will say,"GuruJi. I don't meditate on Light. I don't know what light is, so when I speak this mantra I am actually speaking a lie." Now only very, very few people are reasonable and have that understanding. Otherwise people accept it and say, "Oh yes, it is very good. It is helping me."
See, even if you say, "Fool, fool, fool. fool," or "Gadha, gadha," which means donkey in Hindi. that can be a mantra for you. What is the test that one mantra is good for you and another is not? Mantra means something which can concentrate your mind, and the only real mantra is the ultimate Word of God, which cannot be pronounced.
You cannot create God! When I pronounce something like a mantra, I am the creator of the mantra. but nobody can be the creator of God. So that true mantra is something that you cannot speak. That is why Jewish people call it Jehovah, which means it cannot be spoken.
So really. to understand this, we have to go beyond languages, because today we have so many languages, but what was the ultimate reality, the ultimate form of God when there was no. language? Try to understand this point. When there was no Sanskrit. when there was no Hindi, when there was no English. what was it? Do you think it wasn't existing? Do you think you were existing but it wasn't? The creation is existing but the creator is not existing! It's just impossible!
For instance, if you call me to a delicious dinner, automatically I will think, "Oh, there must he a very good cook." The cook automatically comes into the picture, because he is the one who makes the meal, and without him nothing can be made. Today we say."I am a Christian." or maybe "I am a 'Hare Krishna Hare Rama' fan." But try to understand that we were in the mother's womb for nine months. That's a long period, isn't it? In America people might have short sentences in jail. but that's a very, very long period. being in the mother's womb for nine months. staying there without hardly moving. Many people cannot even sit on chairs, they are moving to and fro. but we were actually upside down at that time; it's a very, very strange situation.
Now what was your religion at that time? Was it Christian? Was it Hindu? Was it Muslim? What was it? It was the true religion: it was the source, it was in the beginning when you were being formed. "In the beginning was the Word." So try to understand that point, because that is our home, from which we have come.
Everybody says, "My religion is good." Nobody says, "My religion is bad." But tell me what religion has really done. All the Holy Crusades, for instance, killed people in the name of God. And Muslim people had their Katl.vam, they caused much bloodshed in the name of God. So many sinful, bloody things have been done in the name of God. It's very, very strange. People were not understanding reality, so they did all these things and said that it was because of God and Truth. That is why we must understand where we are going.
Many people think, "Oh, all rivers meet in the ocean. All roads lead to Rome." And I also agree that they all lead there, because anything you do. any religion you follow, ultimately goes to God. This idea is very soothing, very good. but only in words, not in deeds. Only in word and not in deed. Because although I may have faith that all roads lead to Rome. there may be some roads which will lead me out of Rome! Maybe you arc going on a road which leads out of Rome. and you are thinking, "All roads lead to Rome: all roads lead to Rome." but you won't reach Rome that way. You must have the power of discrimination: you must distinguish between right and wrong, between virtue and vice.
According to one religion, everybody who doesn't believe in their God is going to hell. And according to another religion, if you don't believe their practice, then you are going to hell. So if you listen to both, then everybody is going to hell: nobody is going to be saved! We are in a very, very miserable position, you see. We talk of one God, we talk of one reality, but we don't understand it.
Let me illustrate this with an example. Once ten or twelve blind people wanted to see an elephant. So they went to where an elephant was standing and asked the elephant man to let them see the elephant. And the man said, "Yes. the elephant is standing there. Go ahead, feel it, sec it."
So everybody went for one organ or the other. Somebody felt the stomach. somebody felt the legs, somebody felt the tail, somebody felt the trunk, and somebody felt the ears. And they all became happy, saying, "Yes, yes, we have seen the elephant!"
On their way back home. one man said. "The elephant is like a pillar." He was the man who felt the leg. Another man said, "No, you are completely wrong! The elephant was like a rope." Now this was the man who felt the tail. And actually. everybody was having different experiences of the elephant.
Now what was happening there?They never saw the elephant at all. They only experienced the parts of the elephant. So if God appeared, if He manifested in different religions, if He gave His message to mankind through different channels, then all that is for you. It's not only for Him, it's for you, it's for everybody. And it you think, "God only came through our channel," or "God only spoke through our religion," that is wrong. That's only a part, and we have to understand the whole thing.
This is why we say, take this Knowledge, It will open a new window from which you will be able to perceive the whole panorama of what God actually said to you, and what God actually is. By understanding this Knowledge you can understand all the scriptures.
So you should listen to more and more satsang, more and more holy discourse, because it is very, very important. Food is important for the body, and sat- sang is important for the spirit. The spirit is very, very hungry, and now we have an opportunity, so you should drink, drink, drink until you burst. I think you won't burst, you see. but you should just listen more and more. And we are going to have the Guru Puja Festival in London. I think some people will be going there, they want to go there, and they can spend their summer vacations there, listening to sat- sang.
Actually, we all want the Grace to flow. Now many people talk about Grace. They say, "Grace, Grace, Grace, Grace."
But Swami Ramakrishna Paramhans says, "The breeze of Grace is blowing over the ocean, but to be benefitted by that Grace one has to put out his sails." So just like that, if we want to have that Grace, we have to offer our lives. That is why Jesus Christ says, "The man who sacrifices his life for me will actually attain real life." One who gives his life now will take life in heaven.
So it's a very, very good thing that we arc putting in all our efforts, and we are becoming successful with so many things. Everything is starting on a small scale, and it will grow. Jesus Christ says, "The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed." It's a very, very small seed, but it grows into a big, big plant. So don't worry. Even though we are small. even though we have a small magazine, even though our efforts are very, very small, they will all flourish into a big, big tree. Don't worry.
The atom is very small, but very powerful. So don't get discouraged. Even though you are small, you have atomic power inside you! And you even have spiritual power, which is even more powerful. So meditation is very, very important. and satsang is also important, because satsang gives you encouragement. You can understand many things with satsang.
Many people have the question, "What actually is this Knowledge' Somebody asked me this question today. You see, to understand what this Knowledge is, you have to understand seeds. For example, when you have wheat, you sow that wheat and you reap that wheat. Similarly, Knowledge is the means and the end in itself. You do Knowledge and you attain Knowledge. Knowledge is the means, and Knowledge also is the ultimate thing that you have to achieve. You meditate on the Word, and you have to attain the Word. And actually there is no difference between the two, because in Divine Knowledge there must be no duality. It's just one point. When Guru Maharaj Ji has given you that point, you must meditate. That's very, very important in your lives.
Guru Maharaj Ji says, "Meditate and understand inc. Without meditation you cannot understand me." So we should meditate more and more. It is very, very important. When you sit down for the first time, you might not concentrate your mind. But by practice you will do it. Thank you very much.