31 August 2013
30 August 2013
29 August 2013
28 August 2013
27 August 2013
26 August 2013
25 August 2013
24 August 2013
23 August 2013
22 August 2013
6 August 2013
CHAPTER-V: SELF-EFFORT AND DIVINE GRACE
21. "God-realization can be had at any time by the grace of God, but there is a difference between it and what comes in the fullness of time."
22. "Can the mango which ripens out of season be as sweet as the one which ripens in the month of Jyeshta, that is, the proper season? Men are trying to get fruits out of season. … But these are not as sweet as those found in the proper season. This is also true of the efforts that lead to God-realization. Perhaps you practise some Japa and austerities in this life; in the next life you may intensify the spiritual mood and in the following life you advance further." 23. Disciple: "Mother, I have practised austerities and Japa so much, but I have not achieved anything."
Mother: "God is not like fish or vegetables that you can buy Him for a price."
24. "There is no such rule that the grace of God will fall on one simply because one is practising austerities. In olden days the rishis practised austerities for thousands of years with their feet up and head down and a lighted fire burning under them. Even then, only some received the grace of God."
25. "Do you know, my child, what it is like? It is just like a candy in the hand of a child. Some people beg the child to part with it. But he does not care to give it to them. Still he easily hands it over to another whom he likes. A manperforms severe austerity and spiritual practices throughout his life to realize God, but he does not succeed, whereas another man gets his realization practically without any effort. It depends upon the grace of God. He bestows His grace upon anyone He likes. Grace is the important thing."
26. Mother: "God is like a child, you know. He denies some who seek and of Himself gives to some who do not. Perhaps such people had highly evolved souls from their previous lives. That is why they receive His grace."
Disciple: "Then distinctions are made even in the matter of grace?"
Mother: "Certainly, it is all according to one's Karma. Once the bonds of Karma are sundered, one realizes God." …
Disciple: "Mother, I admit that spiritual exercise, exhaustion of past Karma, and proper time — all these are factors in the attainment of spiritual knowledge. But if God is our own, why should He not show Himself out of His grace?"
Mother: "That is right. But who has this faith that He is his own? All take up religion as a matter of form. How many really want God?"
27. "Be sincere in your practice, words and deeds. You will feel blessed! His blessings are always showered on all creatures on the earth. It is needless to ask for it. Practise meditation sincerely and you will understand His infinite grace. God wants sincerity, truthfulness and love. Outward verbal effusions do not touch Him."
28. "How many are there who truly want to realize God? Where is that earnestness? They, no doubt, profess great devotion and longing, but they feel satisfied when they get even a tiny bit of enjoyment. They say, 'Ah, how kind is God!' "
29. "If you don't call upon God — indeed many people never even remember Him — what does it matter to Him? It is your own misfortune. Such is the Maya of God, He keeps them ignorant of Him saying, 'They are happy enough, let them be so!'"
30. "Whatever you yearn for, that you will get."
4 August 2013
3 August 2013
9. IN THE PASSING OF EVENTS (PART-III)
Subsequently, the Holy Mother had occasion to return to Dakshineswar only twice (in 1884 and 1885) during the Master's lifetime. There are no events
worth recording in connection with these visits, except that at
the time of the visit in 1884, Sri Ramakrishna had an accident resulting in a
dislocation in the left arm.
|Sri Sarada Devi|
It was during one of these several visits of the Holy Mother to Dakshineswar that an event, revealing certain striking features of her character, took place. (Note: We cannot conclusively say on which occasion this event took place, except that it could not have been during the first or the fourth visit. It might have taken place in 1877 during her third visit.) She was then travelling on foot, along with a party consisting of some of her relatives and several others, both men and women. In those days people travelling from Jayrambati to Calcutta had first of all to go up to Arambag, then proceed to Tarakeswar, passing through the wilderness of Telobhelo and Kaikala for about ten miles,
and from there go
to Baidyabati and cross the Ganges. The wilderness referred to was in those
days infested by dacoits, and even today in the middle of it one can see a
terrible image of Kali, to whom the dacoits at one time used to make human
sacrifices. On this occasion, the Holy Mother's party was crossing the
wilderness towards the evening with a view to reaching Tarakeswar before night
fall. As there was not much time left for the approach of night, the party was
proceeding rather fast, but the Holy Mother, who was already tired, lagged
behind. Twice her companions waited for her, but on finding her still lagging
behind, they told her that, if they proceeded at that rate, they would not be
able to cross the wilderness even by the close of the first quarter of the
night, and that consequently all would fall a prey to the dacoits. The Holy
Mother did not want that the others should risk their lives for her sake. She
asked them, therefore, to proceed without waiting for her, and agreed to meet
them at a particular shop at Tarakeswar.
|Kali temple at Telobhelo|
The party soon passed out of sight. The Holy Mother walked as fast as she could but, being very tired, could not proceed much farther than the middle of the wilderness by nightfall. She was now filled with fear and did hot know what to do. Just then she saw a tall man of very dark complexion coming towards her, with a long staff resting on his shoulder. At a little distance behind him was another, who seemed to be his companion. Within a short time the man drew near her and called out to her in a harsh voice, 'Who is standing there at this time of the night?'
Though terror-stricken, the Holy Mother now showed great resourcefulness and presence of mind. She replied to him in an appealing tone, 'Dear father, my companions have all gone away leaving me here. I seem also to have lost my way in the darkness. Would you please help me to reach my companions? Your "son-in-law" is staying at Rasmani's temple at Dakshineswar. I am going to meet him. If you accompany me so far, he will be highly pleased with you.'
By this time the second person also came up. The Holy Mother now understood that it was a woman and the wife of the man with the staff. She, therefore, felt very much encouraged and, approching the woman and holding her by the hand, said, 'Mother, I am your daughter Sarada. I am in great difficulty. Fortunately father and yourself have corne here. Otherwise I do not know what I would have done.'
The Holy Mother's gentle words, her simplicity and innocent behaviour, her perfect trust and fearlessness - all made a deep impression on the man and his wife. They felt a parental affection for her and consoled her as they would their own daughter. As she was very much tired, they did not allow her to proceed that night. They took her to a small shop in the village of Telobhelo and gave her some refreshments. The woman then made a bed for her with her own clothes and protected her the whole night like her own daughter..
Next morning they took her to Tarakeswar and made arrangements for her food and accommodation in a shop. Her companions, who had gone in advance of her the previous evening, met her in that shop. She introduced the couple, her new "father" and "mother," to them and told them of the great service they had rendered her. Some time later, after having finished worship in the temple and taken food and rest, she took leave of her benefactors tearfully, and accompanied the party to Baidyabati.
Referring to this incident, the Holy Mother used to say in later days: 'In one night we became so intimate that, when we parted, I began to weep. With great difficulty I came away from them. I requested them again and again to meet me at Dakshineswar, whenever they found it convenient. They accompanied me for a considerable distance. The woman then collected some peas from a wayside field and tying them to my cloth, said with tears in her eyes, "Daughter Sarada, when you take popped rice at night, use these also with it." They also came to Dakshineswar several times with sweets. The Master, hearing the whole story from me, behaved towards them very cordially like a son-in-law. My surmise is that, though these people are now good and gentle, my "dacoit father" must have committed many highway robberies.'