The Celebration Speech of Swami Kripalvanandji
On the Occasion of His Shasti-Purti Mahotsava (Completion of 60 Years of Age)
Samvat year of 2030, Vaishak
Sud 13, Saturday (4 May, 1974)
Sanatana Dharma and its renunciate teachers
Today is the celebration of the completion of my sixty years of age. It will be in the fitness of things if I draw your attention to Sanatan Dharma and Sanatan Civilization instead of drawing it to my commonplace life. It will be helpful to you all in acquiring good ideas.
India is the land of penance performed by Rishis and Munis. The excellent practice of good thoughts and behavior that has taken place in the holy forests of this land for the welfare of the world, has not been possible in other lands. We can definitely say that the Sanatan Dharma of Bharat (India) is an everlasting, all-embracing humane, and divine religion. There is no inconsistency in it.
Religion is that which leads to the raising of the individual, the family, the society, and the whole universe to a higher level. That is true religion, by the practice of which the beastliness and the wickedness in man gets destroyed and are replaced by humanity and godliness, which go on developing step by step.
This religion has two main characteristics: common and special. The common religion is for the common persons in society. By practicing it, they can earn money and achieve the fulfillment of their desires and maintain order with regard to their families, society, and the nation.
The other one – the special religion is for the select few extraordinary persons through the practice of which they can attain freedom from the cycle of birth and death, God or the Supreme Being, and maintain orderliness with regard to individual, family, society, nation and the whole universe. Of course, it is a fact that the best of Saints may be born in a particular country, but he does not belong to that country alone; he belongs to the whole universe. Being a representative of God, he takes the whole world as his family and ordains his behavior accordingly.
In ancient Bharat, there were many great men, who observed Sanatan Dharma and lived in the forest throughout their life. Even though they had numerous disciples among the kings, emperors, and wealthy persons, they spent their entire life wearing only a kaupin on their waist and lived on the roots of plants. Moreover, they did not have any soft corner for their own physique. How can they have any soft feeling of attachment to any family, society or nation? They have not made any plan to make this Sanatan Dharma a universal religion, and that is why Sanatan Dharma has not taken the form of a creed.
The method of protection of the individuality of Sanatan Dharma is entirely different from those of other religions of the world. The holy saints of the Dharma have at no time given any importance to the numerical strength of their followers. The presumption that the excellence of a religion is based on the number of its followers is quite misleading. So the main principle of Sanatan Dharma is that whosoever follows good thoughts and good behavior is Sanatani. Not only that, they have not added to the number of their followers by showing sympathy, temptation of fear to the followers of any other religion, but have forever ex-communicated those who have transgressed the principles of Dharma.
The rivers run to meet the sea, but the sea at no time up to this day has run to meet the river. The iron gets attracted to the magnet, but the magnet is not attracted by the iron. Sanatan Dharma has abstained from temptations and therefore its bounds have never been transgressed.
Truth belongs to all. No individual, family, society, or nation can claim its stamp on it. Yes, it is better if we all bear the stamp of truth on us. Saints universally acclaimed, first of all, realize the truth. The truth thereafter guides them. The truth is their creed, truth is their God and truth is their preceptor.
Truth propagates itself.
Man does not propagate truth but propagates self-interest.
As a result of the physical science developed by the modern world, man has ceased to be the friend of man; he has become an enemy of man. Due to his constant thinking of materialism, he has become materialistic.
Ancient history bears witness to the fact that India had developed physical science and had raised it to its highest level, but she neglected it when its evil effects were revealed. Had she not developed the spiritual science to its highest level, she could not have properly reviewed the physical science and neglected it.
Physical science makes the individual, family, society, nation, and the world extrovert. Nothing is gained from it except misery, trouble, and sorrow. The spiritual science makes the individual, family, society, nation, and the whole world introvert, and thereby they achieve happiness, peace, and joy.
Civilization (or culture)
Even though the word civilization is on the tip of everybody’s tongue, only a few persons know fully how to establish it into their own lives, in the family and the nation. It will not be far wide of the mark if we say that the degree of neglect, prevailing in India today, of civilization and the word civilization has never taken place in the past.
Civilization provides a well-planned way of life to its nationals. Yes, changes in its outward form do take place from time to time but it does not disintegrate its inner core, as only a saint of a high level can change it, with the result the body, soul, and the principles are thus protected.
Civilization protects the divine qualities of character, self-control, love, good thoughts, good behavior, service, and benevolence in the people and puts them on the road to a higher level of prosperity.
A Civilization is as great as its creator. If the greatness of the creator is limited to a particular nation or some area of a nation, the civilization can be called commonplace. But if the greatness of the creator covers the whole universe, then such a civilization is extraordinary.
The Civilization in India is known as Bharatiya Civilization, Aryan Civilization, Sanatan Civilization, or Brahmin Civilization. This civilization is an immortal civilization, universal civilization, human civilization, or divine civilization. Its prowess in the ancient medieval and modern world has remained unaffected.
Civilization is related to religion and religion is related to Yoga or God. Civilization brings about culture. The inequalities of culture create hate amongst the family, society, nation, and the universe, which in turn produce innumerable classes. For this reason, equality of culture is inevitable in a universal civilization or human or divine civilization.
The frictions, generated in the name of religion and civilization in this whole world, were engendered by irreligious and uncivilized people. Religion and civilization do not create friction; they suppress friction. The party that creates unity by force or war is not a party guided by religion or civilization. It is a party of hooligans. The party guided by religion or civilization does not go to war with anyone; it fights with its own self and purifies itself.
Religious revolution produces peace, good behavior, and innocence. Irreligious revolution produces disturbance, anti-social behavior, and wickedness.
This illustrious land of Bharat, which during the glorious period of its history and shown to the world the importance of religion and civilization, has lost its glory now and is forgetting the importance of religion and civilization. The rulers and the rules of India, who in the past made innumerable sacrifices, are now neglecting the religion and civilization.
The best base for knowledge is the Holy Scriptures, the best base for devotion is music, and the best base for dance and yoga is pranayama. These three ways of devotion have created religion and civilization. Through them, the body and mind become purified. Without the purity of body and mind, the attachment of God or Supreme Being is impossible.
Temples are the Very Soul of Religion and Civilization
The importance of temples of God or prayer halls has been equally accepted by all the religions of the world. It is the religious leaders who have been establishing these temples of God or prayer halls in the whole world from ancient times. The temples are the centers of religion, centers of civilization and centers of service. Whatever humanity is still seen in the society today is fully due to the temples and the Holy Saints who provided the initiative.
It was these temples that served as the source from which the fountain of religion and civilization spread all over the world. The temple is the head of the religion and civilization. Its destruction is tantamount to the destruction of the religion and civilization.
In modern India, there are innumerable institutions for the service of humanity and many more are being established day by day.
The temples are the birthplace of all these institutions. In ancient India, when none of these institutions existed and only the temples were there, the activities of social service were being most efficiently carried on. This goes to prove that temples of God were not only prayer centers or centers of inspiration or centers of service, but were the ever-watchful well-wishers thinking about the welfare and the needs and grievances of the people.
The temples are not the mad-houses of people who take the stone image as God. The temples are the schools of humanity, abode of peace, land of compromise and pacification, centers of hope, places of inspiration and concentration. Just as men do away with the impurities on their bodies by bathing in a river, the men with a devotional bent of mind by bathing in the river in the form of the temples of God or prayer halls do away with the impurities of their minds. The pilgrims, who run to Gokul, Vrindavan, Kashi, Prayag, Haridwar, Ayodhya, Dwarka or Dakor, are numberless. This practice is not started since a year or two. Its beginning can be traced to thousands of years, and yet there is not the least slowing down of the flow of pilgrims in these places. People who look at this fact from a materialistic point of view or those intellectuals who believe themselves endowed with the highest sense may well think these devotees to be on the wrong path. But those who look at them from the spiritual point of view and the humble, mature, and experienced persons believe them to be on the right path.
The God in these temples may well be looking like inanimate objects, but they have in various ways given consolation, satisfaction, peace, and solutions to innumerable devotees. It will do if we say that these temples have repaired the broken hearts of millions of persons. The Gods in the temples are the support of the weak, hope of those who have lost all hope, the eyes of the blind, the feet of the lame, the speech of the dumb, and the future success of the defeated. When mother, father, brother, sister, wife, son, daughter, friend, relatives, beloved persons, the physician, and others can provide no assistance; these temples fulfill all the wants.
These temples or prayer-halls are not the meeting grounds of the people of blind faith but are the psychological laboratories, provided by the saintly religious leaders, who are the well-wishers of the society. By the “Darshan” of their favorite God, or through the hearty prayer of that God, millions of devoted men and women have successfully swam the ocean of frustration, and have attained new lives. We will therefore have to accept this fundamental truth.
It can be proved from the analysis of the lives of those who go to temples regularly, that the temples are the laboratories for psychology. If any science is proved by arguments alone, no experiments will be necessary, but to prove the truth of an argument the need of an experiment is inevitable. When an idea is proved with the help of an experiment, it does not remain a mere idea, but it attains the status of truth.
That the temples are the laboratories of psychology is not only an idea, but it is a truth established by experiments, as the results achieved there from are before our eyes. The person, who does not accept truth even when he sees the results, is not a scientist. He is an obstinate man who does not understand science. His opinion has no validity.
When the physician gives any medicine to the patient, he does not reveal to him the ingredients with which the medicine was prepared. It is neither necessary to do so; nor does the patient show any curiosity about it. His only wish is to get rid of the disease. Similarly, religious saints who are well-wishers of the society do not reveal the way in which the sentiments, ideas, and activities of a troubled man can be given a suitable direction. It is not even necessary to do so.
The ideas that are engendered in the mind of an individual are based on his previous ways of life. Due to this we have to take recourse to a desired idea to change the direction of an undesirable idea according to the previous ways of life of the man.
To clarify this principle I narrate before you a real incident. Real and not imaginary events are required to prove psychological facts. I think this event took place some 30 years ago.
At that time I lived in the village of Avidha near Rajpipla in Gujarat state. In the morning I conducted Gita class and in the evening I gave lectures on the Gita. The village was well educated and advanced and so the hall always used to be full to its capacity. I was a fresh Sanyasi, and so a little bit more proud of my renunciation. Moreover, I was a rising litterateur, and many a time I happened to display my learning. After a contact of one month, the village people took me to their heart with the result that a group of 25 to 50 men and women were found sitting at my residential place at any time of the day.
I use to stay on the upper floor of the house of Shri Chhotalal Kashinath Upadhyay. He, his wife Bhagwati Chandramaniba, and their small sons and daughters heartily served me. One day I was sitting on a swing in my residence and about 10 to 12 graduated men and women were sitting before me. My speech and behavior displayed enough energy and a pleasant mood of mind to attract the attention of other people.
I was used to speaking in a light vein and due to this everyone was pleased with me. Conversation was going on between us and suddenly Chandramaniba came there on the upper floor. She had in her hands material for the remedying of the evil eye.
When she approached me, I asked her, “What is all this?”
“It is the material for remedying of the evil eye.”
“Remedy for the evil eye?”
“For whom is the remedy intended?”
I laughed and said, “Am I to be treated for the evil eye?”
“What is there in me, which can catch the evil eye?”
Chandramaniba was a very frank, good, and pious lady. She used to love me very much and I also loved her very much. She was elder than me, but she behaved like my young daughter with me.
“What is there in me, which will catch the evil eye of anybody?”
“Narayan! Your speech is very sweet. This is not only my experience but of the whole village!”
I became serious. I thought too much talkativeness and too much display of enthusiasm is not good. Then I asked her, “What has my speech to do with the evil eye?”
She said, “Narayan! You are suffering from fever for the last two days. I think your speech has attracted the evil eye of someone.”
I had another laugh but I suppressed it and did not allow it to be noticed even though I was inclined to ask her if the speech has been affected by the evil eye. My tongue should have been affected by the fever, but why has my body been affected by the fever? But I kept mum and allowed her to remedy the evil eye. When the inverted bowl stuck firmly on the plate, a sense of joy covered her whole face and she said, “Narayan! See, how the bowl has stuck to the plate! Did I not say it was the evil eye? I was afraid you will not allow me to treat you, but I came here with the firm determination to remedy the evil eye.”
It was my daily habit to joke and the jocular mood again became dominant in me, but in spite of it I restrained myself and said, “Now the fever must surely disappear.”
My reply satisfied her and in a short time, she took everything with her and went to the ground floor. There was an elderly gentleman among the graduates sitting before me: He could not but speak out, “Swami! You belong to the new age. Your views are liberal, and still, I am surprised to see that you believe in superstition.”
I argued, “I am a scientist. I do not believe in superstition. I believe in science.”
“Was there any science in remedying the evil eye?”
“Please explain it to me clearly.”
“Listen. I was suffering from a little fever since the last two days and Chandramaniba thought that I had fallen prey to someone’s evil eye. If I had entered into a discussion with her with a view to removing her notion, probably much time would have been wasted and she would have felt offended, and even then her notion would not have been destroyed and would have remained intact. When I saw that she had also brought the remedy for her own notion, I remained silent. That I was suffering from the evil eye was her idea, and again she also believed that by the treatment of the evil eye I would be all right. The thorn removed the thorn. If the presumption that I had been affected by the evil eye was a superstition, the presumption that the treatment will provide the cure, was also another superstition. I love the good result more than the victory of my own ideas. So I allowed her to treat me for the evil eye.” My reply satisfied the elderly gentleman.
Whenever the mind is upset by awkward circumstances, one tries to achieve the balance by making efforts according to one’s previous ways of life. The temples are also unparalleled places for the attainment of the balance for a particular class of people.
During frustration, the inner spirit has to be roused. When it is roused, new hope, new enthusiasm, new energy, and new life are generated.
It is an established fact that the temples have roused the inner spirit of innumerable persons.
The Images are not Mere Images, They Depict the Yogic Experiences
A class of people firmly believes that there cannot be any image of God. As the sea cannot be contained in a small pot, the all-pervading God cannot be included in a small image. Moreover, the presumption of the animate God residing in the inanimate image is also improper. The powerless inanimate image cannot give anybody anything. These are the ideas propagated by people who worship God without an image. These ideas may be good for them, but it is not fair if they believe that there can be no other viewpoint except their own. Just as a line has two ends, the same presumption can have another side also.
“Gyan” (knowledge), Yoga, and Bhakti (devotion), are the three paths born out of the differences of nature (Prakriti). Just as creatures moving on the earth find paths on the land more convenient and creatures moving in water find paths in water more convenient, and creatures flying in the sky find paths in the sky more convenient, so the path of knowledge is more convenient to the man of knowledge, the path of Yoga is more convenient for the Yogi, and the path of Bhakti is more convenient for the Bhakta (devotee).
The image is a symbol of God, representation of God, or form of God. It has a shape and form and so it is a representation of God. It is the most material example of the subtlest experience about God, gained by the saintly persons who had communion with God (Brahma Sakshatkar). Just as a student of Yoga (sadhak), through practices of Yoga gains experience of different kinds of “Asanas”, different kinds of “Pranayams”, different kinds of “Mudras”, different kinds of “Pratyaharas”, “Navachakras”, three “Granthis”, “Kundalini Shakti”, etc., so the experience of Gods and Goddesses staying within the body is gained through practice of Yoga. There is no scope for logic here.
Theory of God or theory of Gods and Goddesses is related to Bhaktiyoga, Mantrayoga and Tantrayoga. When the sadhak attains the stage of Dharana (concentration) in Sabij Yoga, he has his communion with the universal form of God, and finally he sees the four-armed form of Bhagwan Vishnu. That communion comes about in meditation through divine vision. Bhakta-yogis describe their experience through their devotional insight. Therefore the sadhak of Bhaktiyoga sees his own experiences reflected in the acts of God’s incarnation, as narrated in the Puranas. Karmayogis describe experiences through the viewpoint of Karma and so the sadhak of Karmayoga sees his experiences in Yogic Upanishads and Yoga-Shastras. Gyan-Yogis describe their own experiences thorough the view-point of knowledge and so the sadhak of Gyan sees his experiences in Upanishads and Darshanas relating to Gyan.
Idol-worship is mysterious; incomparable experiences of Yoga have been involved in it. Image is a science of symbols. It is the crowning glory of Yoga. It is the true, benevolent and beautiful depiction of the most intricate problems of Yoga. The worship of the image has not been preached by ordinary persons. Extraordinary saints have preached it.
Idol-worship is not the worship of the stone. It is the worship of the hidden unseen God. When a person picks up the telephone receiver in his hand and begins to talk with an individual far away, the receiver recedes in the background within a short time and the voice of the individual assumes a prominence. Similarly, in the mind of the Bhakta the inanimate image recedes into the background and the imagination pertaining to God assumes prominence.
The universe is an image of immeasurable proportion. The innumerable creatures and innumerable things are but pigmies. Thus the man, who lives in the world of images, has the stamp of images printed on his mind. The images are of two kinds; material and spiritual. In the material image, the material is prominent and imagination is secondary, within the spiritual image there is no material at all, there is imagination only. Imagination is also an image. Mind itself is the father of the images. Meditation is not possible without the image. Entry into Nirakar Brahma is only possible after the shapes and forms have ended through Nirbij Samadhi.
Believers in God describe the form and merits of God. Whatever is describable must have a shape and form; as description can only be possible of things with a shape, and not without shape. Words are also images, and sentences are also images. Anyone who meditates on a spiritual image is also an idol-worshiper. It will not do to turn the incomprehensible into the comprehensible; otherwise, the common man will not be able to comprehend it. The people who worship the imageless God, build temples without image in the form of prayer-halls, and give importance to religious books. A temple is not only a showpiece of architecture; it is the place where the complex mysteries of Yoga are studied in the best possible manner. Temples are the great centers of religion and civilization. The images are not only images; they are the immortal experiences of Yoga.
If the omnipotent God is not seen everywhere, what sin is there in trying to see him in a particular place? As long as we do not get divine eyes, can we not use our eyes of imagination? The Lord of the universe is not inanimate. He is the source of all creation, and so his existence is there in inanimate things also. Worldly lovers see their darling’s everywhere. This is an example of devotion. God is amenable to devotion. In “Rudrayamal Tantra” and “Bhav-Chudamani”, it is said, “Everything is attained through devotion, God can be seen through devotion, and through devotion best of knowledge can be acquired, so devotion should be resorted to.” By innumerable incantations (japa), or by great torture of the physique, nothing can be gained because, without devotion to God, Yantra and Mantra do not bear any fruit.
An expert sculptor made a very beautiful image of Laxminarayan. Then it was ceremoniously established in a temple. Within a short time, millions of devotees began to come there for darshan. One day the sculptor happened to come there but he did not bow down before the image. He had a dream at night, where he saw Laxminarayan.
He smiled and said, “Who are you?”
“I am Laxminarayan.”
“You? – Laxminarayan? It was I who made you from a marble slab.”
“That is right. At that time I was only an image of marble.”
“God? Who made you God?”
“Devotees – they have through their devotion, established me in their hearts”
“What is devotion?”
“Realization of the sentiments of the heart is devotion.”
A traveler was passing on the road in slight darkness. He sees a poisonous snake on the road but he thinks it to be a piece of rope. He passes over the road from the vicinity of the serpent without any fear. This is the achievement of “Bhavyog.” Another traveler is also going by the way in slight darkness. He sees the rope but thinks it to be a serpent. He is upset with fear and runs back. His foot falls into a pit and gets hurt. This is also the result of “Bhavyog.”
Should we call it Bhavyog or illusion? Illusion is also a sentiment. After the penance of innumerable births one realizes the truth. This realization can never be achieved without firm faith. The sadhak, who through his firm faith looks for truth even in untruth, becomes entitled to the realization of truth, and the sadhak, who looks for untruth even in truth, through his firm unfaith, cannot be entitled to the realization of truth.
The image is of stone. There is no God in it. God is in the heart of the devotee.
Realization is in proportion to the faith. Faith is a power; it is itself love, truth, and God.
In the eyes of the Gyanmargis’, (seekers through knowledge), worship of the image is a very complex problem, but for Bhaktimaris’, (devotees) worship of the image is not a problem. To them, it is an easy and understandable solution. If the destruction of idols and temples could provide the worshipper with the imageless and formless God, in this world, only the idol-worshippers would have remained without the realization of God; but a glance at the history of thousands of years goes to show that this has not been the case.
Every countryman salutes the national flag. Is not this idol-worship? Is it not this devotion?
A hundred-rupee note is only a piece of paper, but as it bears the seal of the State on it, its value is equal to gold of 100 rupees. Isn’t this idol-worship?
Isn’t this sentiment?
Daughter, sister, wife and mother are all women, but they are differently treated. Isn’t this sentiment?
Mind is sentimental. Sentiment is its nature. So different kinds of sentiments are born when we come in contact with things, individuals, ideas, behavior, and atmosphere, etc. “Incitement” is a term in psychology. It means the cause of arousing former sentiments.
We are accustomed to dealings in names and forms and so we cannot imagine anything of any person without name or form. When we remember the name of “Sadguru”, we see before our eyes his form, and when see him personally or his photograph, we are reminded of his name. When this thing happens, we remember our dealings with him. Thus the mind remains constantly affected buy his name and form.
The idol-worshipper worships the image by taking it as God, and the man, who reviles idol-worship, censures it as stone. If we minutely observe this result, one thing becomes quite evident that on the minds of both these men the image has equal effect. This goes to prove that incitement of any kind is able to create love or hate. In good sentiments there is love, in bad sentiments there is hate, and in lack of any sentiment, there is impartiality. How can the man, who cannot have good feeling for animate beings, be expected to have good feeling for the inanimate image?
This universe has its qualities and form, and so for the Sakam Sadhak (aspirant with desire) the education about God with qualities and form is more useful from a psychological point of view. The education regarding God without qualities and form is the next step. The worship may be of God with form or without form but by His darshan or remembrance pure sentiments should arise in the mind of the sadhak and they should remain there steady for a long time. Through the image, the meditation of God becomes quite easy. The meditation of God without any form being imaginative and support-less is found to be very hard. If a reader reads a book on an excellent drama an ordinary imprint is fixed on his mind, but when the same drama is seen being played on the stage by skilled artists, the impression formed on the mind of the spectator is extraordinary.
In the imageless prayer-hall the worshippers of imageless God shut their eyes and pray to the formless God, but when we compare this to the open-eyed idol-worshippers, worshipping in temples with images, we see that their prayer is touching to the heart in a greater degree.
If we make a psychological analysis of the non-idol worshippers and idol-worshippers it will be quite clear that the former have bad qualities like pride, hypocrisy, passion, anger, hard-heartedness, cruelty, indolence, envy, obstinacy, etc., in a greater proportion, while the idol-worshippers have good qualities like humbleness, simplicity, self-control, peace, tolerance, softness, compassion, non-indolence, love, truthfulness, etc., in a greater proportion.
A man of reason is “rajaguni”, a man of devotion is “satvaguni”, and an obstinate man is “tamoguni.”
The number of visitors in imageless prayer-halls is not as much as the number of visitors in the places of pilgrimage and temples. Idol-worshippers derive the greatest consolation from the temples and the places of pilgrimage. In comparison with it, the non-image worshippers do not get any consolation commensurate with their efforts.
Bad logic is produced by wrong reasoning, and good logic is produced by right reasoning. Faith marches in the direction of good logic and so it picks up the right path even after it meets with a pitfall, and bad logic being obstinate does not pick up the right path even after it meets with a pitfall.
His pride is equivalent to that of Ravana, the ten-headed king of demons.
The idol is the symbol of God. It is improper to disregard it under the belief that it is merely stone, earth or paper.
Modern system of education has to accept this ancient principle which is proved by experience. They have to accept the fact that the method by which the student comprehends the teaching in a direct form leaves a firm impression on his mind.
The idol has the perfect fitness for becoming the center of meditation. In the first place, it is an incomparable form of art. In the second place, it is endowed with the feeling of God in it. In the third place, it is prepared on the basis of the scriptures. In the fourth place, it is marked with mysterious symbols of Yogic problems and their solutions. It is a Yogic book sculptured in a pictorial alphabet. Its language can only be understood by the Yogic worshipper and none else.
There are four protectors of religion and civilization. Holy saints, holy scriptures, temples, and the ashrams. When there is the absence of a holy saint, the prowess of religion and civilization is adversely affected, but the holy scriptures and temples do not allow them to be shipped out. When the holy scriptures and temples are also destroyed, the religion and civilization are also destroyed. After the destruction of religion and civilization, no nation can establish its dominance on individuals, families, society, or the nation. Such a nation is considered to be lowly and within a short time, it becomes valueless.
The thoughts in summary from which I have put before you all in respect of religion, civilization, saints, temples, and idols are not mere thoughts. They are the result of research. Science of Yoga and science of psychology are the two subjects very dear to me. The truths acquired through them have frequently been examined by me and when I had not the least doubt about their truth, I am presenting them as an offering before you.
I have been doing sadhana from my childhood days. Sadhana has been the main object of my life. I have continuously made honest efforts to reach the position of a “Sthitpragnya” as preached by the Gita. Even then I do not call these efforts “Purusartha”. I do not even call it penance. I merely call it a prayer. I have imprinted a Shruti from Kathopanishad in my heart. It preaches – “The Supreme Being is not attainable by speeches (sermons), intellect and too much hearing of scriptures. He is attained by the one, whom He accepts and He reveals His true form before him.” I pray daily to the Supreme Being so that he may condescend to accept me as I am. “God! I am yours.” This prayer is my sadhana: I have lived with this prayer and I earnestly wish to die with this prayer on my lips.
Finally, before concluding this speech I earnestly advise you all that if you want to live a noble life, if you wish to see your future generation, you should make the protection of religion and civilization the highest object of your life. Our own true existence is dependent on their existence.
Our temples, our renunciate holy saints, holy scriptures, the classical music, and the classical dances of India are the soul of our immortal civilization. The Jains and Buddhas are also Bharatiya (Indians). They have adopted the Bharatiya civilization in their own way. The Moslems living here are also Bharatiya. They also have adopted the Bharatiya civilization in their own way.
In modern times, the Bharatiya yoga, Bharatiya philosophy, Bharatiya classical music and Bharatiya classical dance – which we include in Bharatiya civilization, are being honored by the whole world. If we say this in other words, we can say that in the modern times, Bharatiya civilization is being put on the high pedestal of universal civilization.
Today in foreign countries innumerable temples are being built. Innumerable foreigners are putting on Indian dress and dance while praying to God. They rejoice by wearing a rosary of Tulsi and Rudraksha. Many foreigners leave their own country and come to Bharat to study Yoga. They put on saffron robes and accept sanyas, and do hard yoga practice.
The protection of religion and civilization will not be achieved by heaps of money. It will not be achieved by the construction of majestic buildings. Their protection will only be possible when we will become the true followers of the ancient Rishis and Munis and true Bharatiyas.
May God give good sense to all of us.