The Last Statement of Swami Veda Bharati before Taking the Five-Year Vow of Silence At the Gathering of the Sangha, 9th March 2013
[During Swami Veda’s talk on 9th March 2013 at the 2013 Sangha Gathering, Swamiji introduced the practice for “the next five years and the rest of your life.” This is a transcript of that talk.]
Akhaṇḍa-maṇḍalākaraṁ vyāptaṁ yena charācharam.
Tat padaṁ darshitaṁ yena tasmai shrī-gurave namaḥ.
Hiraṇya-garbhād ārabdhām sheṣha-vyāsādi-madhyamām.
Svāmi-shrī-rāma-pādāntāṁ vande guru-paramparām.
Om tat sat brahmārpaṇam astu.
Wisdom is different from information. A person can memorize the entire Oxford English Dictionary and still not have a clue as to how to live in a way that is fulfilling and life-enhancing. Wisdom is not about information, but about understanding how to live a fulfilling life.
People often think that wisdom comes from experience. It is true that as we live and act, we have a chance to learn from our successes and mistakes. However, you've no doubt met many people who go through experience after experience and yet seem to learn little.
Wisdom actually comes from a part of the mind, called the buddhi, in yoga. Buddhi is the instrument of understanding; it's our inner-guide. It's function is to make discriminations and choices. When the buddhi is offline, no amount of information will result in wisdom. For buddhi to do its job, it has to be fed good information, and we need to be able to receive and act on buddhi's output. Yoga-meditation provides an efficient program for doing this.
The word consciousness is often used in modern psychology and philosophical literature. It is used for Atmajnana, the direct knowledge that we receive from our Atman. Jiva Atma is the individual soul, and Param Atma is pure consciousness.
From the center of consciousness flows the life force in various degrees and grades. With the following simile, you will clearly understand. When a lamp has many shades, the light is very dim. When you take off the shades, one by one, finally you find the center of light.
Read the February 2013 Newsletter [by Dan Prideaux]
Table of Contents
- Consciousness and Knowledge
- Silence Between Breaths
- Spiritual Advice
- Astavakra Gita, Part VI by Swami Nitya
- SRSG News
- Ammaji's Corner
- KHEL News
- Chai and Veggie Pakoras
A letter written to Swami Veda Bharati by a sadhaka who prefers to remain anonymous.
Daily God is thanked with the greatest of gratitude for the beautiful blessing of the many recordings of spoken words of divinely inspired wisdom. Daily, hour upon hour, my ears hear words of wisdom flowing from the cosmic consciousness like a quiet, but confident river whose source is eternal beauty and truth.
This voice of recorded words is the conduit mouthpiece for the living truth of God's cosmic mind, and a great source of guidance for this one who daily with great eagerness of intention listens to these words, hoping that today, finally, may a strong seed be planted to purify at least one unruly thought of her rampant distracted mind; thus may she be, at last, one millimeter closer to knowing her greatest wish--the realization of God.
Daily, guided by spoken words of truthful insight and by my efforts of intense self examination, if in matters of the day, am unsure of which course of action to take, in the final moment, my mind answers the question the ears have heard many times before; "What action will most please God"? And almost as quickly as the question is asked, the answer will follow.
What a day! It is Chinese New Year Day. It is a sacred Jewish day.
Sharing Steve Siegel's response to Silent Day, the invitation to share one day of silence, Mauni Amavasya, each year:
"I find it very interesting that the annual day for silence corresponds to the new moon that inaugurates the Hebrew month of Adar. Although there is no specific reference to silence, in Jewish tradition, in relation to this new moon that I am aware of, a little digging shows it to be a most auspicious time for the practice.
The name Adar is connected to the Hebrew word Adir meaning empowerment and strength. The word Adar can also be broken into A/Dar-the first Hebrew letter 'alef' representing the oneness of God, and the Hebrew word 'dar' meaning dwells. The letter 'alef' has no sound of its own. It is the pregnant silence just before a sound. So one could interpret the beginning of the month of Adar as a time to be strengthened by dwelling in silence with God or when God dwells in silence with us.
Adar is the happiest, most joyous month of the Hebrew calendar. In fact, its motto is 'When Adar comes, joy is increased.' May we all be empowered and strengthened by the joy of silence and the presence of the One at this special time.