When your arteries are blocked, you become selfish. When your arteries are open, when open-heart surgery has been performed on you, you become selfless. The villagers will be receiving prasad for two months, from now till 14th January, Makar Sankranti. This could only happen because I have been successful in performing open-heart surgery on many of you, and I want to perform more heart surgeries on those whose arteries are blocked.
If you have blocked arteries, open up your heart to me. Do you agree? When your arteries are blocked, you are selfish. When the surgeon opens your heart up, for some time he puts you on an artificial respiratory system. Right now, for these five days, you are all functioning through an artificial heart. Afterwards, you will be back on your normal heart, but with a bypass having been performed by the expert heart surgeon, Swami Satyananda Saraswati. I hope all of you get my message. Remember to think, Yes, I have a heart block. When your heart is blocked, your cheque remains in the inner pocket.
Those among you who have given generously for the villagers do not have any heart problems because I have been very successful in performing your bypass surgeries. Be careful that you do not have heart problems! Heart problems do not only take place in the physical body, but also in the mental, spiritual and psychic bodies. These heart problems are more real, and it is on account of these that you are unhappy, dissatisfied, angry or melancholy. So allow me to perform the heart surgery. Will you?
I can give you some news. One acre of land has been bought on the moon. It is located on the shore of the Sea of Serenity. The ashram, the yoga movement, has bought a piece of land on the moon. I dont think that many of you believe it. It is a regular deed of sale. The money has been paid, the receipt obtained and the title deed will soon follow.
The moon has been completely mapped. Different points have been given names, so our land is located on the Sea of Serenity. There is no water or air there. There is no atmosphere, but thats the name, Sea of Serenity. By buying land on the moon, I am not shooting in the dark. Several American presidents, too, have bought land there.
The calculation of time in India is related to the moon. The moon is the ruler of time in India, not the sun. We follow a lunar calendar. For example, today is the second day of the bright fortnight of Marga Shirsha, Agrahan. We are talking about the position of the moon, not that of the sun. The moon holds a very important place in the Hindu psyche. Muslims also follow a lunar calendar. They call it Jantri, we call it Panchang. All their important occasions like Ramazan and Id are dependent on the moon. In fact, their religious symbol is also the moon, the crescent moon.
There is no gravity on the moon. So the moment you go there, your kundalini will shoot up, reach sahasrara and meet Shiva. Yoga will take place. When you come back to the ashram, you will have an awakened kundalini. For that, ten thousand dollars is nothing. So be ready, keep the money in the bank. All yoga ashrams may soon buy small pieces of land, enough for a tent on the moon. Maybe in time the prices will come down!
When you are on the moon, you will not need to do bhastrika pranayama, tadan kriya, intense meditation, controlling the mind and senses to raise the kundalini. You will have to do nothing because kundalini is always eager to go to Shiva. The natural attraction of Shakti is towards Shiva. But the problem is gravity; she cant rise because of gravity. This earths gravity is maya. Maya is what science calls gravity. Maya does not allow the jiva to get rid of body and mind consciousness. It is always attached to matter; it cannot get out of matter.
The abode of kundalini is swadhisthana, not mooladhara. It has fallen from swadhisthana to mooladhara. Just as you lose your path and are brought back home, in the same way the original abode of kundalini is swadhisthana, the chakra in the tailbone region. From mooladhara, in the coccyx region, you have to bring it back to swadhisthana. This is very difficult. There are hundreds of ways that have been discovered by sages from time to time, which eventually became codified as religion. However, if you go to the moon, do sadhana for a day, just sit in padmasana, close your eyes and chant Om or some other mantra, kundalini will automatically rise.
I have no nationality, I have no religion, I have no gender, I have no language. These are the words of Devi, they form the definition of Devi. Devi has no religion, gender, nationality or language. Perhaps she does not understand English, or Sanskrit or Hindi. She understands only one language, the language of the heart.
All of us are worshippers. Mother is Divine, she is formless. The kanyas and batuks are the medium of Devi, just as wire is the medium of electricity. A wire can be a good or bad conductor. The kanyas and batuks are good conductors of divine energy. For these five days of the yajna, we treat them with full respect. On the fifth day, we will worship and feed them, and ask Devi to bless us through them, for they are the medium. They are not our guests; you and I are the guests. Devi is nirakara, formless, and she is also sakara, with form, she is Bhagavati.
The worship of Devi in Christianity is known as Novena worship. They worship the goddess for nine days just as we worship Devi for nine days, Navadurga, in the months of Ashwin and Chaitra. Christians have the same custom as us. During the Novena worship, the offering is bread and wine. We dont use bread and wine, we give something more practical, useful and down-to-earth, like rice, oil, soap and salt. This is the prasad.
The children here are down-to-earth, they are practical. They do not know how to get tired; they have no concept of fatigue and exhaustion. They are very brilliant, very intelligent. Their parents are not here as they work in Deoghar, Asansol, Dhanbad, etc. Only the mothers and grandmothers live here and look after the children. The children say the ashram is their first home. They go to their houses only at night.
All the children come to class here every day. They have English, yoga, kirtan, Bhagavad Gita, Ramayana and computer classes. We have a very good computer section. This year a hundred kanyas will learn computers. People say, what is the point of their learning computers if they have to get married and collect cow-dung in the morning? I say, even educated people can collect cow-dung. In the villages of European countries there are educated people who live the life of a farmer.
Before fire was discovered, we had nothing. We used to eat raw fruits, seeds, roots, grains, even raw meat like animals. Suddenly man stumbled upon fire and from then on he maintained the fire. Therefore, the first verse of the Rig Veda, the most ancient literature of the world, says,
Agnim ile purohitam yajnasya devam
ritvijam hotaram ratnadhatamam.
We worship the adorable Fire, the chief priest of the yajna. He gets the yajna done in due season. He, as the summoner, is capable of bringing the gods to the yajna performed here.
The first expression of the Rig Veda is dedicated to Agni, the fire god. He is the presiding deity of yajna. Without fire, the yajna of civilization cannot move ahead. Imagine if there were no fire today. Civilization as it exists would crumble into pieces. I am not talking of the agni tattwa of metaphysicians. I am talking of the fire that is manifest, which is an absolute reality, with which you cook your food.
Fire is the forerunner of the entire civilization. After fire came grain. Fire and grain this is what yajna is.
Yajna is the celebration of mankind. It is not a celebration of Hindus, Muslims or Christians, blacks or whites. We are celebrating the day when man discovered fire and grain. We light the fire by churning the arani (a wooden rod), and then offer grains into it. It is the celebration of the birth of civilization. When man discovered fire, he realized he could cook meat, grains, anything at all, that he could even dispose of his own body in fire and purify it. This is what yajna is all about.
The Parsees, Zoroastrians, have the tradition of fire even today. They worship the fire. However, no one except a Zoroastrian is allowed to enter a Zoroastrian temple.
The marriage of Rama and Sita took place on the fifth day of the bright fortnight of Agrahan, which is today. Tradition has it that the marriage took place at dusk. We call this hour godhuli or devadhuli. Godhuli means dust of cows. When the cows return home at dusk, they raise dust with their hooves, so that time is known as godhuli in India. That was the hour of Sitas wedding.
Sita was born in the north of Bihar at a place called Mithila. The people of Mithila are known as Maithils. It is a dynamic, intellectual and traditionalist society. They have now spread all over India; you will find them in the central government and parliament holding high posts.
Sitas father was Janaka, so she is also called Janaki, daughter of Janaka. Janaka was a great jnani. He was a videhamukta (one who is free of the body even while living in the body). He was not an ordinary king. If you want to know more about Janaka, you should read the Brihadaranayaka Upanishad. However, Sita was not really Janakas daughter. A great famine had ravaged Mithila. There had been no rain for years. So the people of Mithila came to Janaka, the ruler, and said, The famine cannot be averted unless you plough the land. This is the tradition in India: when the king becomes a farmer, there is no famine. When the king remains only a ruler, famines take place because he is busy looking after industries and corporate houses, not agriculturists. This is what is happening now. Guru Nanak chose to become a farmer at the fag end of his life. So when a guru or king becomes a farmer, when a king ploughs the land, there can be no famine. Therefore, the people of Mithila asked Janaka to intervene. Janaka came to till the land. There in the farmlands he found a small, new-born baby. That was Sita.
What does the word Sita mean? Have you ever seen a plough? There is a slit in it that is called Sita. And Rama means the indweller. Just as air, moisture and light are everywhere, so Rama dwells in all hearts. Sita is the one who can pierce the land, she can remove the hard core of the ego of man. After all, this is the field, the hard land full of ego, full of maya. Nobody can change you unless you have a strong Sita element in your life as well as the element of Rama. That is the meaning of Sita-Rama.
Sita was a miraculous child right from birth. Janakas family had a very big bow, which belonged to Lord Shiva. One day Janaka saw that this bow, which even the strongest of men could not move, was picked up effortlessly by Sita. He came to the conclusion that she was no ordinary girl and should be married to a person who could string the same bow. When she grew up, a swayamvara (marriage ceremony in which the bride chooses her husband among a gathering of men) was held, stringing the bow being the condition for marrying her. Nobody could do it, all the kings failed. Finally, it was Rama who strung the bow. So, on this day, the fifth day of Marga Shirsha, during godhuli vela, when the cows were returning home, she was married to Rama.
The wedding day of Sita is called Vivaha Panchami in North India and Sita Kalyanam in South India. This event did not take place five or six thousand years ago, but in Treta yuga, which goes back millions of years. Hindus have a different calculation of time. We dont believe that creation was created five thousand years ago. We believe that creation came into being billions of years ago, and mankind was born more than a billion years ago. This is also endorsed by modern science. Hindus believe that creation has a cycle of four yugas: Satya, Treta, Dwapara and Kali. The approximate age of Kali yuga is 432,000 years. Out of these, five thousand-plus years have gone by and the rest remain. We have seen the initial period of Kali yuga. Twice this is Dwapara yuga, 864,000 years, twice that is Treta yuga and twice that is Satya yuga. This is one cycle of chatur (four) yuga. That is the Hindu concept of time.
Sita and Rama are not mere symbols. They are part of the history of India. History has a purpose because Nature, Prakriti, always has a purpose. Sita and Rama represent us; they represent the position of our lives. What is happening in our life? What should happen in our life? What is the relationship between the self, the mind and the ego? What is the relationship between the body and the mind? What is the relationship between the body and everything else earth, water, fire, ether? Where do we stand? All this is depicted in the lila, avatara katha, the story or the legend of Rama.
Great scholars in both the East and the West have said that history is facts, and yet not quite. If history is retold exactly the way the events happened, it will promote hatred. So history has to become legend. If history is reiterated as history, it will always cause dissensions, wars and hatred. If Sri Lanka were to remember that Rama destroyed it, what would happen today? The relationship between India and Sri Lanka is no longer historical. The war is not historical; it is now legendary. Legend is not myth; legend is the next form of history. The eighteen Hindu Puranas are not mythology, they are legends. Pura means once upon a time, ra means knowledge. The etymological meaning of Purana is knowledge of once upon a time. Therefore, correct the way you translate mythology.
The Puranas are legends, and legend is the next incarnation of history. Legend becomes folklore. Folklore is not myth, but the third incarnation of history. The story of Rama and Sita that we hear today is folklore. The songs that we sing such as Sita Rama manohara jori, Dasharatha nandana Janaka dulari are folksongs. History becomes legend, legend becomes folklore and folklore lives and re-lives. You can destroy history, but not folklore. Therefore, it is important that we celebrate the event of Sita and Ramas wedding. We are celebrating history, and history must be celebrated in a way that provides inspiration, enlightenment and inner awareness.
Mere remembrance of Sita-Rama takes us from outside to inside. When we say Sita-Rama, we attune with ourselves. Otherwise, we are always in tune with the external world, always extroverted. When you say Sita-Rama, Radhe-Shyam or Gauri-Shankar, the purpose is the same: to bring you back to your own consciousness, to your own self. The purpose is to be happy. They represent Prakriti and Purusha, matter and spirit, electrical wires and electricity, minus and plus. In the Bhagavad Gita (13:19), it is said:
Prakritim purusham chaiva viddhyaanaadi ubhaavapi
Vikaaraamshcha gunaamshchaiva viddhi prakritisambhavaan.
Know both prakriti and purusha as beginningless or eternal. Know also that all the modifications and qualities are born of prakriti.
Prakriti and Purusha are the two eternal principles of this creation. They are the principle of the universe that you see and the universe that you do not see, the imperceptible universe. Therefore, Sita without Rama, Krishna without Radha, or Shiva without Gauri is not the reality. That cannot be the reality. Reality always lies in duality, because if there is no duality, there cannot be any trinity. If there is no trinity, there is no permutation and combination, and if there is no permutation and combination, then what is all this about? This creation is an outcome of the permutation and combination of the elements of Prakriti and Purusha. Whether you talk in mathematical, metaphysical or scientific terms, it is the same. Whether you talk about unified field theory, quantum physics, Adwaita Vedanta or Dwaita Vedanta, we have to accept that there is duality with a possibility of trinity, and permutation and combination. Therein lie infinite possibilities of creation.
When you come to Rikhia, forget about fans, coolers and hot water. There is a story behind this. I come from Kumaon, a region in the northern hills of India. We dont know what heat is. So during the summer in Munger, by ten in the morning I would feel like a fish out of water. It was so difficult for me to survive in the heat of Munger. I used to sleep in the day and do all my work, editing, writing, etc. at night. Ultimately, we fixed an AC there. Heat was my greatest weakness, which I carried with me for a very long time. I always preferred to go to Gangotri, Badrinath or Rishikesh, not the hot plains.
When I came to Rikhia, the first thing I decided to do was to face the heat. So I did Panchagni tapasya. For six months, from 14th January to 16th July, from Makar Sankranti to Karka Sankranti, I would sit surrounded by four fires in four directions, the fifth fire being the sun. From morning till evening I faced the heat for nine years. I faced the heat of ninety degrees Celsius. Then I became heatproof. I am a heatproof man. I can sit under the sun like a farmer for the whole day. I do not have any problem with heat or cold, because of the five fires. Panchagni means five fires. There are five fires: kama (lust), krodha (anger), lobha (greed), mada (arrogance) and moha (delusion). That is the panchagni of the jiva. So far I have been talking about the panchagni of the body. The five fires torment the jiva; the jiva is not able to face these passions.
On 16th July I used to close down the panchagni tapasya because then it is of no use. The temperature falls after Karka Sankranti. Panchagni has to be performed when the heat is rising. So at this time I used to do purashcharana, repeating the guru mantra for a specified number of times. I did purashcharana one crore and eighty lakh (10,800,000) times.