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Archive for November 27th, 2009

From: “Karma Rasa”
To: AM-GLOBAL
Subject: Thanksgiving In Ananda Marga
Date: Fri, 27 Nov 2009 07:11:51 +0000

Baba

“Maneri gahane tumi a’cho, a’cho prabhu sada’ jege a’cho…” (4380)

Purport:

Baba, You are always remaining in the depths of my mind– You never
leave me. You always remain awake. You go on working day and night, beyond
the time. You never stop. Baba, whatever You want to do, You go on doing.

This whole expressed universe is Your eternal game. You are
ever-present: beginningless and endless. You are ever intoxicated in Your
divine flow. You are the Goal of everyone– everyone wants You. You are
remaining with one and all.

Those who are trying to come close to You by their virtuous deeds and
shravan, manan, nididhyasana, & dhyana, only they are able to come to You.
Only they are able to realise You and have Your grace and proximity. Baba,
You are grace-Personified…

== THANKSGIVING IN ANANDA MARGA ==

Namaskar,
One time when Baba was going out for His field walk, many margii
families had gathered round to see Baba as He came out from His house.

At one point Baba lovingly gestured toward one of the margii children
and the young child said, “Thanks.” The child had obviously learned this
from his parents.

Baba smiled and gently said, “See, this young child is telling me ‘thanks’.”

Everyone present clearly understood Baba’s message: As His disciples and
devotees, we are not supposed to offer “thanks” to Baba. This was the
“hint” Baba was giving us that day, by His grace.

That was the first and last time any of us ever heard anyone say “thank
you” to Baba.

OUR WAY IN ANANDA MARGA

In our AM, we surrender to Guru, we offer our minds to Him, we sacrifice
ourselves for Him, but we do not give “thanks” to Baba.

Baba says, “He knows everything that you know, and everything you do not
know. Obviously there is no other way than total surrender to Him.”
(AMIWL-7)

Even during DMC, when so many margiis and acaryas would go on stage to
receive a prize from Baba, then no one would ever say “thank you Baba”.
Instead everyone would lay prostrate to Baba in pranam or sastaunga pranam.

In AM our standard is high, especially with regards to our relation with
Baba. We are to give our everything to Him.

In contrast, merely saying or giving “thanks” is something comparatively
cheap or paltry.

WHY THIS POINT HAS COME UP

This topic of “thanks” has come up because yesterday – the 4th Thursday
of November – was “Thanksgiving Day” in the USA where “giving thanks” is
looked upon as something very noble.

During Thanksgiving in the US, people are giving their thanks in so many
ways: To their Lord, to their faith, to their parents, to their friends
and families, and to their communities. These are some of the ways the
Thanksgiving holiday is expressed – as well as with lots of food and
drink (tamasik).

THANKS IS ONLY FOR DISTANT PEOPLE

 

NEVER SAY THANKS TO CLOSE PEOPLE

However, in Ananda Marga, our approach is entirely different. With
persons close to us, we have a relationship based on love and service.
Due to feelings of closeness we do not say “thanks”. Because we
understand that the person helped us with their heartfelt feeling – not
for any recognition or in hopes that we would say “thanks”.

As bhaktas, we are ready to do each and every thing for our close
relations in service to the Supreme. This is internally understood – in
that case there is no need to say “thanks”, rather that would only
demean the interaction & relation, as if the person helped you only in
order to be “thanked”. When in truth, the feeling and intent runs so
much deeper than that. Of course, by your demeanor your close relation
understands that you have respect and appreciation for their help and
support – which goes far beyond the term “thanks”.

In our Marga, we only verbally offer thanks to those who are far or
distant from us. Saying “thanks” is part of our social norms, but it is
not something we use with those whom we feel a sense of intimacy and
closeness.

If someone whom we revere or if someone close to us does something for
us, we will not say “thanks” – saying so will only brand that person as
being distant. We only say “thanks” or “thank you” in more formal,
business or distant relations. It is not used with close people and
certainly not with Parama Purusa.

Yet in the west, the Thanksgiving holiday and saying “thank you” is
looked upon as quite honourable. This is used even between very close
persons. Perhaps because the concept of service is less understood or
because the relationship between family members is more distant, as
people are more accustomed to living by themselves, not as part of a
collective.

Whatever may be, saying “thank you” is looked upon as something very
gracious in the west whereas in our AM society it is not.

We should all understand the ethic in Ananda Marga and at the same time
keep in mind that many of the pseudo-culture holidays and festivals from
the US – like Halloween & Valentine’s Day etc – are being adopted by the
rest of the world. This is sure to happen with Thanksgiving as well. We
should be sure that we do not get affected; rather with a clear mind and
heart we should be rationally grounded in our sentient manner.

For all these reasons and more, this is a topic of importance for Ananda
Margiis.

SURRENDER TO GURU – NOT GIVE THANKS

We should take Baba’s lesson to heart and strictly follow the ethic in
AM. With regard to Guru we are to offer ourselves, not our thanks.

Baba says, “Remember, you have to offer your own identity – not money,
rice plantains or other crude objects. The give-and-take of crude things
is a business transaction. If you want to attain the bliss of Brahma,
you must offer your own self. If you want to have the Great “I”, you
must give away your own little “I”. You have to give the full sixteen
annas, (the full rupee). Giving fifteen annas and holding back one anna
will not do. You must completely surrender. To attain that Infinite One
with the help of your mental concentration and strength, you have to
surrender yourselves.” (AMIWL-4)

By Baba’s grace in Ananda Marga, we all feel a very close and personal
connection with Parama Purusa. We do not feel any distance or gap. In
that case in sadhana or anytime we ideate throughout the day, the inner
feeling comes, “Oh Baba, I love you so much, I am ready to do anything
and everything for You.”

Thus, when we are ready to give everything with Him, then merely saying
“thanks” is just a tinsel-like expression.

Our link with Him is quite personal and full of the desire to serve Him.
It is His grace.

In stark contrast, in many of the dogmatic religions, there is a much
more distant feeling with their chosen Lord and worshipers commonly give
thanks to the Lord when receiving food, pay raises, and other mundane
things.

So theirs is an entirely different, more external approach, both in the
devotional and social sphere.

BABA’S BLESSING

By Baba’s grace, our link with Him is based on devotion, service, and
the desire to please Him. We do not give thanks to Him, nor to our close
persons. Ultimately all are actions are done in service to Him – as we
try to fulfill our debt to Guru by giving our all.

Tasmae Shrii Gurave namah

“I surrender myself at your altar. Namah means to “surrender”. Namah
refers to the process called “Namo mudra’”. It means that all my
expressions, all my dexterities, which are expressed through my ten
fingers, have been brought to a point. That is, I surrender along with
all my capabilities, all my dexterities.” (AV-3)

Namaskar,
Karma Rasa

Note 1: OUR SOCIAL NORMS

When we are addressing or communicating with our close persons then by
our unspoken behaviour and love we express so much more to them than by
saying “thanks”, but certainly with people whom we do not know very
well, then according to our social norms, saying “thanks” is quite
appropriate.

Baba says, “You should offer thanks to someone from whom you are taking
service (by saying, “Thank you”). (CC-2, ‘Social Norms’, Pt #1)

Baba says, “When someone is inquiring about your health and welfare, you
should offer your cordial thanks to the person.” (CC-2, ‘Social Norms’,
Pt #25)

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Could Not Work

Baba says, “Spirituality is the summum bonum of life in all its
aspects.” (I & I, ‘Cosmic Brotherhood’)

Note 1: We all know that spiritual sadhana is the ultimate human
activity and the be-all and end-all of human existence. It is the
sweetest expression of life and by the grace of Parama Purusa it is this
sadhana which transforms ordinary humans into divine beings. Thus
sadhana has an extraordinary role in human development and progress.
Unfortunately one or another crude and foolish people proclaim that
sadhana is just like doing nothing. Or they tell that doing sadhana is
not as important as doing crude mundane things etc. By their dull and
obtuse expression, we can easily understand the extent of their
realisation– that it is zero. Indeed their hearts are like a stone in
the river. Even though they are totally surrounded by Parama Purusa, due
to their stone-like heart not even the tiniest amount of devotion can
get inside. Their existence is not something desirable– not at all. So
we should never put any stock in such ridiculous claims made by such dry
people. Instead always may we remember that it is dharma sadhana which
brings one up to the highest point & glorifying stance of human existence.

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