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Archive for March 22nd, 2013

From: Michael “Mahitosh” 2121@yahoo
Subject: Simple Story, But Difficult to Realise
Date: Thu, 21 Mar 2013 21:44:08
To: am-global@earthlink.net

Baba

This entire email is composed of 3 parts:
(1) Posting: Simple Story, But Difficult to Realise
(2) Trailer Quote: Unknowingly Parents Misguide Their Children
(3) Prabhat Samgiita #1391;

Each section is demarcated by asterisks (***).

== SIMPLE STORY, BUT DIFFICULT TO REALISE ==

Namaskar,
Various gurus have always used stories to communicate important ideas to the common citizens.

Our human society is comprised of so many people, each with their own interests, talents, and abilities. Some are intellectuals, some are technicians, some are artists, and some are scientifically or mathematically inclined etc.

Everyone has their own specialty, bent of mind, interests, and understanding.

Hence when a guru wants to convey a teaching to the entire public, the guru will often give the teaching in the form of a story. Because regardless of one’s psychic inclination, everybody enjoys a story. All will listen and learn.

Baba, being the Taraka Brahma and Supreme Guru, has also told many stories. Embedded in those stories are the gems and jewels of Ananda Marga ideology. Hence, not only should we enjoy Baba’s wonderful stories, but we should understand them deeply and apply them in our practical lives.

MANGO GROVE STORY

One of the famous stories which Baba has repeated in numerous discourses is the story of the jinani and bhakta visiting a mango grove. Everyone in Ananda Marga is aware about this story because Baba has presented it again and again.

As we recall, both a jinani and a devotee go to a mango grove. Immediately the jinani (intellectual) becomes highly involved in counting the trees, measuring the length of the branches, checking out the leaves, and classifying the mangoes according to their genus type such as Mangitera Zeylanica, Valcarrie, Bombay Ratual, Aroemanis, and Nam Doc Mai etc. The jinani is fully immersed in researching and forming calculations about those mangoes. The bhakta, upon entering the mango grove, goes up to the first tree, grabs a ripe mango, sits down, and enjoys the sweet taste of that delicious mango. At the end of the day, the jinani is very hungry because he was busy in studying the mangoes, not eating them, while the devotee is feeling fulfilled and 100% satisfied.

This type of mango grove story Baba has recounted various times.

DADAJI MISUNDERSTOOD THE STORY:

ATE MANGOES TO BECOME A BHAKTA, BUT JUST GOT DYSENTERY

Unfortunately, here is one Dada who took Baba’s teaching in a very literal manner. He really thought that by eating mangoes he would become a first-class bhakta – as if eating mangoes was the hallmark of being a devotee. In result, he ingested a huge number of mangoes in one sitting and contracted dysentery. Dadaji fully recounted this incident in his book.

So no one should literally believe that eating mangoes will somehow magically transform one into a devotee. Certainly, all in Ananda Marga want to be top-grade bhaktas, but going to the grove and eating piles of mangoes or going to the supermarket and purchasing boxes of mangoes will not yield the desired result.

Baba’s story is not to be taken literally.

NOT SO SIMPLE TO UNDERSTAND

Just because it sounds like a simple story, we should not therefore conclude that the meaning is also very simple. There is a deeper significance that all may not be aware about. Then there is also the matter of applying it to our own lives in a practical and tangible way.

Baba has told this story because He wants to convey its significance to everyone. That much we all know. The most basic idea of the story is that human life is very short – evening is going to fall, i.e. the twilight of their life will be upon them – so one should utilize this small window of time in doing sadhana and attaining Parama Purusa. One must not waste all their time in useless hypothesizing and intellectual extravaganza about God.

Beyond that, there is more to know, and that is why this story is a real treasure.

PRACTICALLY APPLYING THE STORY TO SPIRITUAL LIFE

When Baba says that jinanis enter the mango grove and start counting the trees and analyzing the leaves, but miss out on the fruit, Baba is guiding us that jinanis come into this world and study so many things, from lokas to microvita, from kosas to cakras, but they miss out on the real essence of life, i.e. engaging in real sadhana and getting Parama Purusa and His bliss. They do not take care in practicing all the lessons, following 16 points, adhering to conduct rules, doing asanas and making their body a perfect medium for performing sadhana, and practically engaging in spiritual pursuits. These dharmic codes jinanis do not follow – just they pass their days acquiring bookish knowledge. Thus they do not get Parama Purusa, nor enjoy His bliss. Only at the end of their life do they realise their folly, but by then it is too late. Their body is old, their ego is big, their glandular system is weak, and their mind is fickle: At that point it is too late to practice dharma sadhana. Only then does the jinani understand that their life passed in vain.

Here in the story, eating mangoes means engaging deeply in spiritual practices and endeavours, because only then can an aspirant get Him and bask in His bliss. While counting the leaves means only seeking out intellectual knowledge about spiritual life, samadhi, and philosophy. That is what is meant by counting the leaves and measuring the mangoes; it is all just theoretical. That is what jinanis spend their days doing.

Whereas bhaktas engage wholeheartedly in the practical side of eating the mangoes, i.e. gaining true spiritual attainment, by His grace.

Thus there is a world of difference between the empty, theoretical approach of the jinanis and the blissful, practical approach of the bhaktas. The jinani is just wasting his life in accumulating mounds of theoretical knowledge right up until death. In that case, evening falls – they are on the brink of death – and all they have done was measure mangoes; they never got to taste any of their sweetness. The could never realise or feel Parama Purusa in their life. In contrast, the bhakta is immersed in doing sadhana, cultivating a deeply personal relationship with Parama Purusa, following conduct rules, and feeling His grace. Bookworms waste their life: Neither they practice what they preach nor do they use their knowledge to help others, while bhaktas do sadhana and reach unto Him – their life becomes successful.

The devotee enters the mango grove and eats the mango and does not get sidetracked by anything else. The sense is: When a bhakta is born on this earth he aims for and attains Parama Purusa, and he does not waste his time in useless pursuits like name, fame, or the egoistic over-accumulation of knowledge in order to impress others etc.

PRACTICALLY APPLYING THE STORY TO SPIRITUAL LIFE (CONT)

When a devotee eats the mango, that presents a colorful and mouth-watering image for what it means to attain Parama Purusa. Thus getting Parama Purusa is not some abstract theoretical notion.

In our day to day practical lives, eating the mango, or getting Parama Purusa means getting bliss out of all the lessons, thinking of Him always, and feeling His love practically in your heart.

Just as all the taste buds of the devotee in the mango grove are immersed in the sweet sensation and taste of that mango, similarly a true bhakta in this quinquelemental world practically feels Baba’s divine vibration in sadhana and even when not in sadhana. One will practice all the lessons joyfully, doing them will not be burdensome. True bhaktas feel His inner sweet touch just by closing their eyes or by thinking of Him. They are always immersed in His flow and life passes blissfully in that way.

So being a bhakta is not some dry, theoretical experience. One cannot just say that, “Well I have so much knowledge, memorized all of Prout and have all the facts about microvita on the tip of my tongue and that is why I am a bhakta.” It does not work that way.

One can only say they are a bhakta if they tangibly feel Baba’s blissful presence in their heart night and day. Just like a bhakta in the mango grove can practically taste the juicy sweetness of that fruit. So one is only a bhakta if really they attend to sadhana with great sincerity and feel the only aim in their life is to serve and please Parama Purusa. Such persons are not harboring any other idea related with career goals, prestige, money, or spouse etc. They do not suffer from worldly attractions, asakti. They have only love for Parama Purusa, bhakti. Then only is one a bhakta – otherwise not.

DEVOTION IS HIGHLY IMPORTANT AND LIFE IS VERY SHORT

Baba has told the mango grove story because He wants us all to know that devotion is very important and life is very short. Best is to start sadhana early otherwise evening will fall, i.e. their life will pass and death will come. In that case, one will miss out on the cream of life.

Jinanis aim to read huge numbers of books, i.e. the vedas and tantras, and write some thesis on philosophy and become a great scholar. Those who pass their time in this way are jinanis. They claim to know all there is to know about spirituality, but in their heart they never experience or feel Parama Purusa’s love. So at the end of their life they repent about how they wasted their entire life and could not get an iota of sweetness. By then it is too late – they are frail and tired and completely unable to take up the proper path. Their body is old and diseased, their mind is distracted and they cannot do sadhana. For them, evening has fallen. So they just repent, awaiting their death.

Best is to become a devotee. And the way to do that is by wholly diving into the realm of sadhana. Getting bliss in sadhana and loving Him in dhyana. That is what it means to eat mangoes in the grove. There is no second or third meaning.

Thus we should understand the inner meaning of the devotee in the mango grove story and then honestly evaluate if we really satisfy that criteria or not. If not, then we should put forth sufficient effort in our kiirtan and sadhana to get the mind devotionally inspired and moving in that direction, by His grace.

MISUNDERSTANDING:

“I HAVE MEMORISED THE VEDAS…I MUST BE A GREAT DEVOTEE”

Unfortunately, there are some who call themselves as bhaktas, yet they are not really involved in tasting the mango. They are not involved in sadhana.

They may struggle to even sit in sadhana; they will not complete the lessons; and their mind just flickers in various directions when doing sadhana. Such a person then has no quality of being called a devotee.

But that same person may think that, “I have memorised all the vedas, studied all the holy texts, and I know everything about microvita and samadhi as I teach in all the seminars and classes, thus I must be a great devotee.” Sadly, some think in this way.

But their assertion is far, far from the truth. They are merely falling into self-deception.

Everyone wants to think of themselves as being a devotee, but no one should fall prey to a false notion of what a devotee is or who they are. That is why Baba has given the mango grove story. Because it practically teaches us who a devotee is, i.e. those fully engaged in sadhana and ensconced in the bliss of Parama Purusa. This mango grove story emphasizes that devotion is the only way human beings reach fulfillment and get Him.

IMPRACTICAL JINANI & PRACTICAL BHAKTA

The typical jinani thinks, “Well I have so much knowledge about spirituality, I know all Sanskrit terms and can speak on any philosophical topic and that is why I am a bhakta.” Such is the prideful yet misguided way of the jinani. The jinani is merely counting the leaves and measuring the branches in the mango grove until evening falls and his death approaches.

While the bhakta will always keep Parama Purusa in the forefront of their mind, and be immersed in His bliss. The bhakta is eating the mango – i.e. doing sadhana and feeling His grace – and ultimately becoming one with Him. That is what it means to eat the mango and that is what we are to do in this life.

“The devotee will pluck a ripe mango and eat it… the devotees will get real bliss…Devotees will come under the shelter of Parama Purus’a…and cross the Cosmic Cycle comfortably.” (1)

SUMMARY STATEMENT

Bhaktas and jinanis both reach the mango grove. Bhaktas eat sweet fruit and jinanis study the plants and analyse the mangoes. Ultimately evening falls.

The sense is that bhaktas and jinanis both come in human form and act according to a particular mentality or mind-set. Devotees practice sadhana and realise Parama Purusa in one life, and jinanis acquire a lot of knowledge about spirituality in order to win debates, earn praise, and get their name in the newspaper, yet the inside of their heart is dry like a desert. They do not feel at all connected to Parama Purusa and cannot do sadhana – mostly because of their vanity of knowledge, i.e. ego. At the end of life, when those jinanis realise what a big mistake they made and that sadhana is important, then it is too late. Ultimately, such jinanis repent how they passed their life but did not practice what they learned.

On the surface the mango grove story looks very simple, but it is hard to realise. Most people of the world do not realise this story in the true sense. When the time comes for sadhana and spiritual practices etc, then their procrastination and lethargy starts. They justify that, “Tomorrow, I will be very sincere.” But tomorrow passes in the same way – missed opportunity.

Those who do like this do not realise or understand this story in the true sense. If they realised it, then they would not have procrastinated and skipped their with spiritual routine, including all lessons of sadhana. In this way time passes, unfortunately.

The concluding idea is that theoretical understanding of this story is easy, but it is not easy in true understanding.

TERMS:

SANSKRIT BHAKTI VS ENGLISH DEVOTION

In practical usage and meaning, there is a grand difference between the Sanskrit word bhakti and the English term devotion.

In English, devotion means being committed to a certain idea or person. For instance, a person is devoted to their spouse, or devoted to their country etc, but in Ananda Marga being committed to one’s country or career does is not called bhakti. But commitment to the mundane is termed as devotion in English. Some more examples include: devotion to one’s business, devotion to one’s children, devotion to one’s land or hobby or sport etc. In all these ways devotion is used in English. But the term bhakti only means love for Parama Purusa, i.e. love for God.

Thus to make matters clear, it is better to use the terms bhakti and bhakta. Only due to a distinct lack of a proper term in English do I sometimes use the words devotion and devotee.

Finally, a bhakta is a devotee of God, not just a devotee.

BABA’S RELATED TEACHINGS

Here are two versions of this story from Baba’s teachings.

“Imagine a devotee and a philosopher being in a mango grove. The philosopher will start counting the trees, their branches, and the mangoes in the orchard. While he is thus wasting his time, the devotee is enjoying the sweet juice of the mangoes. The devotee says, “God is mine – I shall love Him and understand His will and act accordingly.”” (2)

“A jiṋánii and a devotee both reach a mango grove. The jiṋánii will count the number of trees, but the devotee will pluck a ripe mango and eat it. The former will hold lengthy discussions on [whey], but the latter will eat up the cream. The jiṋániis will repent, but the devotees will get real bliss. Devotees always act wisely. The jiṋániis tax their brains with different problems of logic of the scriptures, whereas the devotees eat butter churned from the scriptures.” (3)

Namaskar,
Mahitosh

REFERENCES:
1. Ananda Vacanamrtam – 1
2. 25 May 1969, Ranchi
3. Ananda Vacanamrtam – 1, “Máyámetáḿ Taranti Te” – 2 / The Nectar Beyond Máyá

The section below demarcated by asterisks is an entirely different topic,
completely unrelated to the above material. It stands on its own as a point of interest.

*************************************
Unknowingly Parents Misguide Their Children

“The views established in our psychic world regarding the different trends of life have so unnaturally diverged from one another that the naturalness of the human mind has been spoiled. Human beings have lost the capacity to think anything, but somehow pass their days with a lot of hollow, mechanical mental objects. The caravan of our social life thus rolls on.”
“So today parents may rightly say, “We have almost no vital energy left after exchanging blows and counter-blows with life. We have no chance to mould the minds of our children with the care and tenderness of our hearts. All the sweetness and finer sensibilities of our minds have been sucked dry by the harsh realities of life. How can we take care of our children? We cannot even provide them with proper food and clothing. How can we know what they are thinking? Do we have the time to understand anything properly at all? We know children should be taught through the medium of play and entertainment, both at home and outside, but is it possible for us to do that? We even have to disturb our talented son at his studies to send him to the grocer’s to buy salt, cooking oil, spices, etc. We know it is wrong, but there is no alternative, for keeping a servant is beyond our means.””
“There may be some truth in this, but it is not the point at issue here. In order to develop a healthy outlook, the most important thing children need is robust idealism. To impart this, parents require only two virtues: self-restraint and good judgement. Let us discuss good judgement first.”
“When the parents are about to go on a trip or go to a show, or when they are invited to a pleasant function or a social outing, the children may start whining or nattering to accompany them. At such times many parents tell lies without a qualm; somehow they dupe their children and leave. When the children realize what has happened, they also learn to tell lies; and to hide their intentions or their actions from their parents, they gradually start lying more and more.” (Human Society – 1, Education)

Note: Without realising it, parents teach their children both good things and bad things. Being an ideal parent is not easy. Unknowingly parents often teach their children the ways of lies and deception.
*************************************

PRABHAT SAMGIITA

“Toma’r katha’ bheve din ket’e ja’y, toma’r chavi mane bha’se…” (P.S. 1391)

Purport:

O’ Parama Purusa, by Your sweet grace my days are passing in blissfully thinking about Your divine glory & Your wondrous tales. O’ my Lord, Your beautiful form is always floating in my mind.

O’ Divine Entity, O’ Baba, when I think about Your sweet smile, my mind gets inundated with waves of bliss – and I completely forget about my own existence in this mundane world. I forget all the days and dates. Baba, by Your grace when I think about You then I lose myself entirely in Your divine rhythm.

O’ my dearmost Baba, by singing Your glory and chanting Your kiirtan and moving around You, then my heart always dances in bliss. It is nothing but Your mercy and compassion how You have made me Your special medium. My situation is that of a musical instrument and You are the Musician. Or, I am a tiny drop of water and You are the vast, endless ocean. Baba, O’ my Lord, by Your grace now I realise I am within You, and You are infinite. Baba, there is only one thing that I ask: Please always remain in my each and every breath.

Baba, You are so gracious: I love You. You are my everything…

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