The advantages of contact with a great soul:
Nov 18, 2000 01:29 AM
Below I would like to add a example of what contact with a real
Mahatma might involve, i.e., latrine duty:
Study the autobiography of Mahatma Gandhi. He never made any
difference between menial service and dignified work.
cleaning the latrines were the highest yoga for him, the highest
puja. He annihilated his illusory little `I' through this
Many highly educated persons joined his ashram to learn yoga
him. They thought that Gandhiji would teach them yoga in some
mysterious manner, in a private room. They thought that he
teach them pranayama, meditation, awakening of the kundalini,
They were asked to clean the latrines first.
Gandhiji used to mend his own shoes. He himself used to grind
flour. He would take upon himself the work of others when they
unable to do their allotted portion of work. When an educated
a new ashramite, felt shy to do grinding work, Gandhiji himself
do the work in front of him. And then the man would willingly do
work the next day.
Try to do daily as many virtuous actions as possible. When you
sleep have a review of your day's actions. Mark them in your
spiritual diary. Performance of virtuous actions is the beginning
Repeat mentally or silently with the breath, the Lord's name -
such as Hari Om, Sri Ram, or your own ishta mantra. Do this
you are working in the office: A strong habit of repetition of the
mantra will soon be formed.
Karma, according to Jaimini Rishi, is the performance of
and other vedic rituals. According to the Gita any action done with
niskamya bhava (unselfishly, motivelessly), is karma yoga. Lord
Krishna says: "Work incessantly. Your duty is to work but not to
expect the fruits thereof." The central teaching of the Gita is
non- attachment to work. Breathing, eating, seeing, hearing,
thinking, etc., are all karmas.
Service of your guru or a mahatma (saint) is the highest form of
karma yoga. This purifies your heart quickly. Contact with a great
soul or guru has immense advantages. You will benefit by the
aura of the great personage. You will draw inspiration from him.
- From Swami Sivananda of the Divine Life Society
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