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Sivananda

THE PATH BEYOND SORROW

Chapter 15: Saints And Sages

4.The Transforming Influence of a Saint’s Action

 

 

Energy Enhancement          Enlightened Texts         Sri Swami Sivananda          The Path Beyond Sorrow

 

 

There was a saint living on the banks of the Ganges in the province of Bihar, a Vedantin, but devoted to Lord Rama. For many years he had been practising Yoga in a cave which he had dug out on the river bank and had attained to a very high spiritual state. He would be immersed in trance for several days and weeks and eat no food during that time. Due to this, he came to be known as the holy man whose food was air. Being a devotee of Lord Rama, he had many articles of worship (vessels, plates, pots, spoons, lamps and candlesticks) and devotees would come and lavish upon him their offerings (fruits, flowers, camphor and incense) and he would offer these to the Lord.

A thief broke into his little cave one night. Knowing that this man was a devotee of God, and believing he might have received much of value from his own devotees, the thief took with him a large sack. He had placed many valuable articles of the saint therein when the latter, who was in an inner cave, heard the intruder and came out to see who was there. Upon seeing the saint standing there, the thief fled, leaving the sack on the floor. The saint picked up the sack and followed the thief, and upon overtaking him, offered him the sack saying, “Here! this is yours. Why are you running away? You have taken a great deal of trouble to come and collect this material; so take the sack. I have also added a few things which you had missed”. The thief was simply stunned. He did not know what to say. He took the sack and went away.

Many years later, the brilliant disciple of Sri Ramakrishna, the great Master of Vedanta who came and expounded the Vedantic message to the West, Swami Vivekananda, was on a pilgrimage in the Himalayan regions, visiting the holy shrines of Badrinath, Kedarnath, etc. And he found a holy man who was carrying on meditation and was shivering with the cold, not having sufficient clothing for warmth; and Swami Vivekananda stopped to chat with this man and wrapped about him a blanket which he was carrying.

Vivekananda spoke of his travels and of the many persons whom he had encountered. The man asked the Swami if he knew the saint who lived on air and the Swami said he had recently spent some days with him. The man then asked if Swami Vivekananda had heard about the thief taking away this saint’s articles used for worship and how he, the saint, had run after the thief with the bag he had dropped and had added to that bag other articles which the thief had missed. Swami Vivekananda said that he had heard the story. The man then told the Swami that he was that thief, and from that one moment of contact with that great saint who lived on air, he had been purified to the degree that he went to work and earned his livelihood and had later on renounced the world in search of the Lord.

 

Next: Chapter 15: Saints And Sages, 5.True Saintliness Is Egolessness

 

Energy Enhancement          Enlightened Texts         Sri Swami Sivananda          The Path Beyond Sorrow

 

 

Chapter 15

 

  • Sri Swami Sivananda, The Path Beyond Sorrow Chapter 15: Saints And Sages
    Sri Swami Sivananda, The Path Beyond Sorrow Chapter 15: Saints And Sages, Blessed Immortal Atman! Glorious children of the Supreme! Beloved seekers! It is a great joy and a great blessedness for me to be with you all and bathe myself in the radiance of your holiness. It is said in India that the greatest blessedness a soul can have is to come in contact with those who love the Lord. Many things can be hadyou can have riches and material things which may be very valuable, but this is not anything compared to having the company of the pure in heart, of people who love God, of people who aspire for Truth. This latter cannot be purchased. It comes to us only through His Grace. It is a bestowal that comes directly from God. It comes only when the Divine wishes to be gracious unto us. He has been very gracious to me in this way at energyenhancement.org

  • Sri Swami Sivananda, The Path Beyond Sorrow Chapter 15: Saints And Sages, 1.The Purifying Power of Holy Saints
    Sri Swami Sivananda, The Path Beyond Sorrow Chapter 15: Saints And Sages, 1.The Purifying Power of Holy Saints, Satsanga is a transformer. Satsanga is the company of those who are at one with the Reality. Sat stands for the Supreme Truth or Reality. Sanga is association or company. Satsanga means being in close contact with the Supreme. The highest of holy company is to be with God in God-thought or divine contemplation, in meditation, in worship. You get close to the Reality with the aid of these processes at energyenhancement.org

  • Sri Swami Sivananda, The Path Beyond Sorrow Chapter 15: Saints And Sages, 2.Conflicting Declarations of Creeds and Scriptures
    Sri Swami Sivananda, The Path Beyond Sorrow Chapter 15: Saints And Sages, 2.Conflicting Declarations of Creeds and Scriptures, The pathway to the Supreme is beset with many difficulties and it is confused with conflicting declarations. Especially in this modern age, man is confused about religion. He does not know what the truth is, or the right religion, or the correct belief, for diverse religions abound. There are different scriptures declaring the Ultimate Reality in different terms, one contradicting the other. There is mutual conflict. There is no agreement and each religion insists that its conception of the Truth is the only Ultimate Reality. Sometimes they do not stop at this, but go one step further saying, All other conceptions will lead you to hell-fire and you will have to continue in that state, in the furnace of hell-fire and brimstone, for centuries and centuries. You who do not believe thus are all pagans and heathens at energyenhancement.org

  • Sri Swami Sivananda, The Path Beyond Sorrow Chapter 15: Saints And Sages, 3.Infallible Guidance from the Lives of Saints
    Sri Swami Sivananda, The Path Beyond Sorrow Chapter 15: Saints And Sages, 3.Infallible Guidance from the Lives of Saints, So, if you go to the scriptures and they confuse you, well, just look to the path which these great ones have taken. See how these saints have lived, how these people have tried to make themselves fit for the expression of the Supreme. See how they have spoken, how they have dealt with their fellow-men, how they have reacted to life and its experiences. Behold! Channel your life upon the pattern of the saints, and in this way, the great importance of the lives of saints for us is that they present to us a blueprint of the life-perfect. Their lives offer to us a tangible scheme of living, a way of life, glorifying their own exemplary personalities, their own ideal personalities; and we find that now we are in safe hands if we can just follow in their footsteps. Lives of great men oft remind us...they leave behind them footprints in the sands of timeand these footprints, their ideal pattern of living, becomes to us the indicator of the path to perfection at energyenhancement.org

  • Sri Swami Sivananda, The Path Beyond Sorrow Chapter 15: Saints And Sages, 4.The Transforming Influence of a Saints Action
    Sri Swami Sivananda, The Path Beyond Sorrow Chapter 15: Saints And Sages, 4.The Transforming Influence of a Saints Action, There was a saint living on the banks of the Ganges in the province of Bihar, a Vedantin, but devoted to Lord Rama. For many years he had been practising Yoga in a cave which he had dug out on the river bank and had attained to a very high spiritual state. He would be immersed in trance for several days and weeks and eat no food during that time. Due to this, he came to be known as the holy man whose food was air. Being a devotee of Lord Rama, he had many articles of worship (vessels, plates, pots, spoons, lamps and candlesticks) and devotees would come and lavish upon him their offerings (fruits, flowers, camphor and incense) and he would offer these to the Lord at energyenhancement.org

  • Sri Swami Sivananda, The Path Beyond Sorrow Chapter 15: Saints And Sages, 5.True Saintliness Is Egolessness
    Sri Swami Sivananda, The Path Beyond Sorrow Chapter 15: Saints And Sages, 5.True Saintliness Is Egolessness, The principle which the saints enliven within themselves, the principle of seeing the Lord in all, beholding the Self in all, and of attaining to a state of absolute desireless non-possessionthat is the way to liberation. The Supreme can be achieved only by making these truths live in reality within ourselves. And the forbearance of the saints! The very essence of saintliness is the total effacement of the ego. If you wish to briefly sum up the inner heart of saintliness, it is the total effacement of the ego. That is the perfect emptiness of which Christ spoke when he said, Empty thyself and I shall fill theea total emptying of ourselves of all I-ness and mine-ness and of all their offsprings, namely, desire, selfishness, attachment, anger, delusion and greed. From I springs mine. If there is no I, there is no mine. I is the root thought that separates us from God, and when I and mine come, there comes selfishness. The I wants to possess all things and countless desires spring into life. And when a desire is blocked, anger comes; and if the desire is fulfilled, more desire comes and greed follows because desires are insatiable and cannot be appeased. From desire springs greedgreed to obtain and possess that which is desired. Out of this possession comes clinging, infatuation and delusion. Saints are devoid of I at energyenhancement.org

 

 

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