Book Title: Light Of Life
Author(s): Padmasagarsuri
Publisher: Arunoday Foundation
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Page #1 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir THE LIGHT OF LIFE By Acharya Shri Padmasagara SURISHWARJI MAHARAJ DOC For Private And Personal Use Only Page #2 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir SHRI NAMASKAR MAHAMANTRA NAMO ARIHANTANAM NAMO SIDDHANAM NAMO AYARIYANAM NAMO UVAJJHAYANAM NAMO LOYE SAVVÅSAHUNAM ESO PANCHA NAMUKKARO SAVVA PAVAPPANASANO MANGALANAM.CHA SAVVESIM PADAMAM HAVAI MANGALAM For Private And Personal Use Only Page #3 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir THE LIGHT OF LIFE by Acharya Shri Padmasagar Surishwarji Maharaj The English Version by Prof. K. RAMAPPA, M.A., B,£d., For Private And Personal Use Only Page #4 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra THE LIGHT OF LIFE by Acharya Shri Padmasagar Surishwarji Maharaj The English Version Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir by Prof. K. RAMAPPA, M.A... B.Ed., For Private And Personal Use Only Page #5 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra The English Version : by THE LIGHT OF LIFE: by Acharya Sri Padmasagar Surishwarji Maharaj Prof. K. Ramappa, M.A., B.Ed., No. 602, III Cross Road Hanumanthanagar Bangalore-560 019 First Edition : No. of Copies 1500 Price: Rs. 15-00 Published by: Shri Arunodaya Foundation 6/21, Shitalnath Flats-1 Khanapur Ahmedabad-1 Printed at: KANTHI PRINTING PRESS Basavanagudi Bangalore-560 004 Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir For Private And Personal Use Only Page #6 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir A Foreword By The Author Dear Readers ! in these discourses, I have tried to expound some sublime doctrines of the Jin Shasan. I am sure that if these doctrines are understood and practised in your dayto-day life, your life will attain spiritual elevation, and you will realise the value of Moksha. The aim of life is to attain Moksha or salvation from the Samsar. You may have other objectives which are worldly. Your body is more important than your wealth ; and your soul is more important than your body. Your first and foremost duty in this life is to seek the purification and elevation of your soul. I hope that these discourses of mine will help you to attain spiritual elevation and purification "What we call the beginning is often the end. And to make an end is to make a beginning". T. S. Eliot. This, English version of my book, Pravachan Parag has been prepared by Prof. K. Ramappa who has translated my books (1) Pratibodh and (2) Mokshmarg Me Bees Kadam into English under the titles (1) Awakening and (2) The Golden Steps To Salvation. Acharya Sri Padmasa gar Surishwarji For Private And Personal Use Only Page #7 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir With the best compliments of: 1. Sri Devaraj Ranka, Bangalore 2. Shri Manorath, Jainsons, Bangalore 3. Shri Shankarlal Suresh Kumar, B'love 4. Shri Jeevaraj Chowhan Jain, Blow For Private And Personal Use Only Page #8 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir A Foreword by The Translator This book entitled, "The Light Of Life" is an English version prepared by me, of the Hindi book, “Pravachan Parag", a collection of ten discourses delivered by Acharya Shri Padmasagar Surishwarji Maharaj Sahib. The great Acharya Shri is a scriptural scholar of outstanding eminence and excellence ; and his discourses are remarkable for their profundity, lucidity, clarity and subtle humour. In this book he has expounded some lofty doctrines in such a manner that even lay readers can comprehend them fully and clearly. The work of translating this book has been an enlightening experience to me. I translated this book into English in accordance with the sacred wish of the Gurumaharaj. The book took its present shape under the enlightened guidance of Muni Shri Arunoday Sagarji, a disciple of Acharya Shri Padmasagar Surishwarji Maharaj. The discourses in the book provide guidance and light to all those who seek spiritual elevation and ethical excellence. "'Those are pearls that were his eyes" K. Ramappa No. 602, III Cross Road Hanumanthanagar Bangalore-560 019 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #9 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir For Private And Personal Use Only Page #10 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir CONTENTS Page No 33 - IV 112 i Chapter 2 Chapter 3 Chapter 4 Chapter 5 Chapter ☆ Chapter ? Chapter 8 Chapter 9 Chapter 10 Chapter VI 127 VII 142 VIII 152 IX 164 172 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #11 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir For Private And Personal Use Only Page #12 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra THE LIGHT OF LIFE I Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir The desire to acquire knowledge is present in every individual. This desire for knowledge continues in man as long as he exists. You may call it inquisitiveness or interrogative propensity or doubting tendency or intellectual curiosity or you may call it by any other name. As long as man remains imperfect, it is natural that he should desire to know what perfection is and how he can attain it. Even questions can be of many kinds. Some questions are serious and they arise from years of profound contemplation and reflection and they emerge from the depths of thought. The other kind of questions are ordinary ones that arise in our minds when we happen to be wandering about on the banks of rivers or seas. But the questions that arise from the depths of our consciousness are as valuable as pearls. If you dive into the depths of reflection and contemplation; and if your questions emerge from those depths, they will be worth pondering over; and only such questions can constitute the fit material for a profound study in our lives. But let me tell you that it is hard to examine and solve all the questions and problems on one day and in the course of one discourse, hence we shall consider the questions that remain over, next sunday or on some other day. But what is the question that is to be examined in today's discourse? And the question considered should be such that. it lies in the hearts of all ordinary people. Many cannot ask those questions; and do not also understand them. Many times they do not get convenient opportunities to ask those questions. We are considering some serious questions and will try to answer them so that all such people may benefit by our discussion; and so For Private And Personal Use Only Page #13 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir that many people may derive benefit from the answers that one person gets. The question constitutes such a subject that it will give satisfaction only if it is asked with a genuine intellectual curiosity and on the basis of genuine faith. If questions are posed only as an attempt at show and mere ostentation, they will not bring any self-realisation. Such questions do not bring any satisfaction to the soul; and the answers will not possess any sweetness. The questions should always be asked with intellectual curiosity; and with this desire: "I must find out the answer to it. I must fully understand it''; and the answer to your question will emerge naturally from those depths of your consciousness front which your question emerged. The solution will naturally arise from your concentration on the matter and from the sincerity with which you contemplate on the question. Sometimes, the sea is convulsed into rolling, roaring and rising waves by cyclones and tempests; and in the same manner, the samsar agitates our souls and produces in them terrific and tumultous convulsions and consequently, waves arise in our souls. It is those waves that assume the form of spiritual questions But when the waves subside and when the water grows calm and still, you can look into the serene water and see your clear reflection in it. Similarly, if your questions arise from the serene depths of your soul, the solutions appear like reflections on the serene and still waters of the soul. Answers arise from the depths; not from the tumult of the soul. Bhagavan Mahaveer, Lord Krishna and Shri Rama did not pose questions to others They obtained solutions to their questions from the depths of their own spirituality from which their questions emerged. This is called in philosophy ''Self-movement" They created a profound agitation in themselves and by means of a restraint exercised on their intellectual propensities and by means of purifying their cun minds and hearts, they completed their endeavours 2 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #14 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir and obtained answers to their problems. Of course, ai present, that condition does not prevail; hence I have to give you satisfaction. You must deeply ponder over the question that place betore you. First of all, this question will remain throughout your lives because those activities of ours which are not directly perceptible cannot be seen since we do not possess the ability to see them and if we endeavour to visualize them; that endeavour will not achieve its objective fully; but surely we can get at least, a partial answer to our quest. The question of the brightness of light arose before a man who was born blind. Some friend of his came to him and said to him, "Today, the people of the city are celebrating the Deepavali; the city is radiant with lights. There is a wonderful and splendid illumination. It is really unprecedented because the city was never thus decorated with lights before". The beauty of the brightness of lights cannot be described in words. A question arose in the mind of the blind man, "What is brightness ?". This question arose on the basis of what anotier man said. He entertained this desire, "I must know what light is". Someone told him that the search-light, the day-light, the sunlight and the light of a lamp possessed different degrees of radiance. The blind man had already posed a question, "How does light taste? How to test its radiance ?" Now a second question arose in his mind, "Has light any fragrance ?" If it has fragrance how is it?" Now a third question arose in his mind, "Kindly let me know this. What shape does light possess? I am impatient to know it. How is its form and how is its beauty ?". Thus many problems arose in his mind. How could that For Private And Personal Use Only Page #15 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir blind man be made to understand the nature of the brightness of light ? Several efforts were made to explain it to him. The friend said to him, ''Brightness means the light of the sun". What is the sun ?" the blind man said. "You want to know what the sun is. How can I explain this to you? I can only say that the sunlight is white," said the friend. "What is white?'' said the blind man. "Milk is white, so white is the colour of milk," said his friend. "What is milk?" said the blind man. "My dear man! Don't you know what milk is? You drink it daily and you have tasted it," said his friend. "I do not want you to explain its taste. Please describe its form, that is, its colour. How can there be white ness in it ?", said the blind man. "I say, Have you not been able to understand it? It is like the wings of a heron, white and bright," said his friend. "What is the wing of a heron?". Thus new questions began arising from those questions. One question led to another. The friend who wanted to explain it to him began to wonder how and by what means he could explain it to him. He wondered what comparison or medium he could use. The means by which he could understand the meaning of whiteness were the eyes and he lacked eyesight. His friend thought, "If I say anything to him a new question will arise. Indeed, a serious problem has arisen''. Then he said, "Why? The heron is white". For Private And Personal Use Only Page #16 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra "I have understood it, but what is a heron ?" The friend bent his hand to enable him to touch it and find out the shape of a heron. The blind man understood the shape of a heron He grasped it. He grasped only a fraction of the truth and then, he said, "Oh, then light also has this form". He also bent his hand and said that light must be of that form of that shape and of that colour Yet he was not satisfied He asked again, "How does it taste? How is its fragrance ? How is its beauty ?". A friend said, "If you keep explaining it thus, you will be tired. Yet the blind man will not be satisfied. His knowledge is imperfect and partial and he cannot get a perfect knowledge of the colour of light. Therefore, the easiest way is to get him treated for his blindness. Try to get him treated for blindness". An experienced doctor was invited He was wellversed in his field and he was an eye-specialist. He was a doctor who had specialised in optical surgery and treatment The blind man's eyes were bandaged. The doctor advised him that his blindness would be cured within twenty seven days, after which time he would be able to see things clearly. The blind man carried out the doctor's instructions for twenty seven days. Everything was done under the supervision of the doctor. Everything, was done according to the directions of the doctor; not only in respect of treatment, resting and diet but also in respect of washing, dressing and keeping the mind calm. The result was that when after twenty seven days the bandage was removed, the man could see things with the help of his own light or eyesight. He understood the nature of light. When the bandage was removed and when, after that, the question was asked "Do you want to know anything about light?", he replied, "Dear friend, Now what is there to understand? The question itself has disapperared. He understood what light was. There was no need for any verbal description of light. He found his own answer to his question. For Private And Personal Use Only Page #17 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Now, you realise that eyes are necessary to see light and that if there is any defect in the eyes, light cannot be seen. If we do not see an object with our eyes and if we merely imagine it and if what we imagine is different from the object, then it would be a serious blunder. What one should know abouf the soul and the Dharma, and what one should know about one's own activities and austerities, cannot be known unless the distortions of the mind are completely removed. We can see the samsar with our physical eyes, but we can visualize and realize the soul only with the help of the mental eyes. The strength of the soul can be realized only with the mind; and we can attain that realization only when we have removed all the distortions of our minds. You will not need any assistance or guidance then. There will not be any need for your asking questions; and you will not also need any answers, You will get your answers naturally. You must realize that you cannot get answers to your questions as long as your minds are blind and as long as there are distortions in your mind. Everyday, you place before me new questions. You say, "Maharaj, kindly tell us something about Dharma". My reply would be, "Dharma is in the soul. Dharma is closely related to the soul and your question, the next day would be, "What is the soul?" and my reply would be "You can never see the soul". "Then you tell us what exactly spiritual experience is". Everyday, you will place before me such questions; and if I tell you something wrong about the soul, you will go away carrying a wrong impression. Many times, this can lead to serious blunders. There will be a great difference between the explanation and the comprehension. I have to tell you that you must endeavour to reach that stage, once. You must carry out the right endeavours to attain your questions; and that will help you to get full answers 6 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #18 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir to your questions. If you carry out your endeavours with the same attitude with which you ask the questions, you will automatically get answers to them. There will be no need for my discourses or explanations to answer your questions. There will not be any need for my explaining the answers to you. Various people have asked me various questions. Bhagwan Mahaveer has given answers to all the ultimate questions of the world on the basis of the Anekantvad (the multidimensional approach); and since this approach combines both the views, there is no room for any controversy in his theories. This kind of approach is called the Anekant view. This view is so total and comprehensive that in it all contradictions get merged and there will be no room for any controversy in its theories. In this approach, there is the desire to know and accommodate the opinions of others. In it, an attempt is made to realize one another's opinions. Mahaveer Bhag. wan has expounded his theories on the basis of this multidimensional approach. When a problem is approached on the basis of the Anekant view, there will be an understanding between each other; people can see and realize one other's views: there will arise a lasting compromise among people; they will get proper answers to their questions; and there will not be any kind of disagreement or controversy among people. So, I will adopt this approach to answer your questions. You must realize first that I have carried out my contemplations on the basis of this view. One must reach that stage and dive deep into the depths of contemplation and reflection. There re countless things in the samsar, which we cannot perceive directly; but which we can understand only indirectly or on the basis of the Pramans evidences which have been accepted. If there is a man who has developed short-sight, and cannot see objects situated at a distance, he will have to wear glasses with minus power. Supposing there are some objects in the sky which you cannot see with your eyes, For Private And Personal Use Only Page #19 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra you have to see them through a telescope. There are many stars and planets in the sky which will be clearly visible if you look at them through a telescope. You may say that you cannot believe in the existence of the things which you cannot see but there are many such things whose existence you have to accept though you may not be able to see them. You have to accept the existence of certain things. Try to reach that phase of Sadhana (endeavours) from where you can visualize things situated at a great distance. Attain the auspicious point of view by means of which you can know yourself and all the others. If we achieve that level, we will be in possession of both the plus and minus lenses. If you attain the power of knowing yourself and ali the others, then all your questions will end, because questions arise only out of controversies and out of differences of opinion. Many kinds of problems abound in Samsar. The Samsar continues as long as you have problems. As long as you are existing in Samsar, you will have intellectual curiosity to know things. When your curiosity is satisfied. there will be no more questions; there will be no one to ask questions; there will be no desire or thirst for any more knowledge. You must reach that level. You must carry out endeavours to reach that level You carry out endeavours to find answers to your questions and you will attain satis faction and perfection. WHAT IS THE NECESSITY OF DHARMA ? Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir This question is of a lower level. A deeper question arising from a more fundamental curiosity is, "What is the necessity of Dharma ?" You know that all things in Samsar derive power from it. No object can attain movement without power If the clock should keep moving we have to wind it or make it work by some other energy. If you have a car, you will have to provide petrol to it from which it gets energy to move. & For Private And Personal Use Only Page #20 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir If you should keep yourselt alive you have to consume tood and water. Then thoughts and reflections arise in you and your life attains a movement and a direction; and will become engaged in action. In the same manner, the soul also requires internal food or fertilizers if it should attain strength and mevement. Dharma, spiritual duties and activities and roble and sublime thoughts and contemplations constitute the food and fertilizers to the soul, They will be the means by which spiritual satisfaction can be attained. Those activities and austerities give an extraordinary power to the soul. Therefore, Dharma has been deemed absolutely essential. It is possible to exist without food but it is not possible to exist without [harma. Why is it so ? This is the next question that arises from the earlier discussion. WHAT IS THE EXPLANATION OF DHARMA ? Dharma explains the meaning of life. Those who ask the cuestion; "Wiry do we need Dharma ?'' must realize that Dharma constitutes a propriety in life; it means a proper organisation of life; and it is a supreme means by which life is given a proper direction. Dharma is not a bondage. If the bondage of love appears in life, that very bondage will become the cause for the attainment of MOKSHA. Dharma helps us to attain Moksha by getting rid of the bondage of Samsar, But love must appear in it. One should organize one's life on the basis of Dharma for the attainment of one's own salvation and for the calvation of all others. Dharma belongs to the soul and it is not different from the soul. The soul is imbued with Dharma but is in a dormant state; and it has to be awakened from that state of stupor. Fire and heat can never be different from each other. Water and coolness can never be different from each other. These objects cannot exist separated from those attributes. Where there is the substance called soul, the attribute called Dharma also exists there. We can never separate fire from its heat, and we cannot also separate coolness from water. Dharma is believed For Private And Personal Use Only Page #21 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir to be the nature of the substance. "Vastu Sahao Dhammo" Bhagwan Mahaveer has expounded the truth that Dharma is but the nature of a substance. The Dharma or nature of fire is to burn; the dharma or nature of water is coolness. In the same manner, the dharma or the nature of the soul lies in beneficence and noble conduct. The explanation of Dharma is very wide and extensive. We people have begun to supply Dharma packed in words. The fault lies with us. The Paramatma did not say that Dharma is any religious sect or community. He never said that it could be packed in words or bound in Shastras; nor did he say that Dharma means any caste. The Paramatma expounded Dharma for the spiritual welfare of all jivas; we have defined Dharma thus. "Antahkarana Shuddhitva iti dharmatvam" Dharma is nothing but the purity and the sanctity of the soul or the inner self. On the level of lofty thought all are equal whatever be their caste, community, creed, race or nationality or birth. We should not care for these divisions or differences. We should think about humanity from the point of view that all are human beings. We should realize that all are essentially souls. If we treat them with love and know them through love, that is Dharma. Dharma does not mean merely going to the temple and offering prayers; nor does it mean merely fasting. This is a very narrow and limited definition. You have to see Dharma first with the lens of minus power. Every religion of this world has some uniqueness or speciality. Different religions have different kinds of ideas and ideologies, They differ in respect of their thoughts and reflections; and Paramatma Mahaveer has amalgamated all those ideas and ideologies from the Anekant point of view. Once there were some frogs. It was the rainy season. Since there was a heavy rain, the whole town was flooded with water. The four frogs sat on a log of wood. Of them, one was profoundly contemplative; very sagacious and 10 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #22 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir possessed a rich experience of life; so it remained silent. It is the nature of an experienced one, to remain silent. Such a jiva would speak only when there is necessity. But the second frog was such that, it could not remain silent. It said, "How fortunate we are, to be thus saved from being drowned and washed away. When the whole city is plunged in water, we have escaped death". It also said, "How beautifully this log of wood is floating on the water and moving. We will certainly reach our destination". The third frog raised an objection and said, "Dear friend, You are wrong. The log is not moving. Actually, it is the water that is flowing". "Your opinion is wrong. We have to think about the matter a little deeply', said the second Frog. The third Frog said, "You are wrong. This is a very strange matter and we have to think about it deeply. You must accept what I say as the truth. I tell you actually the log is not moving. It is the water that is flowing". The second one said, “This is a serious problem. Your opinion also is worthy of being given deep consideration. What you say is true, but what I said is not wrong". Thus a controversy arose between the two frogs. The fourth Frog had delved into the depths of yogdarshan expounded by Patanjali. It was profoundly mystical and philosophical and it always looked at the world from its own point of view. It did not possess a lofty point of view. So it said at once, "Both of you are wrong. You do not understand the truth at all. Neither the water nor the log of wood is moving. Actua. lly, we are flowing and moving, by ourselves. The great exponent of the Yogdarshan, Patanjali has said that we are flowing and moving; that there is a stream flowing through our minds; that the mind itself is a liquid which always keeps flowing and we are floating on the tide of that flood. Neither the river nor the log is moving. It is we that are flowing and moving by ourselves". Those three Frogs thus obstinately stuck to their respective points of view. The first frog saw that a terrible 11 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #23 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Controversy had arisen and felt that those three frogs had fallen into that controversy because of their obstinacy of clinging to their respective points of view and that adharma had arisen in the name of dharma and that those three frogs had approached the problem fron the Ekanth or one-sided point of view. It said in a very serious manner, "All of you are absolutely right in your respective ways, but all of you are also wrong in your opinions". Then those three frogs asked the first one, "How can you speak thus, contradicting your own statement ?" Then the frog said, "This is Syadvad. The three of you are at the same time right and wrong. You have looked at the problem from your own respective points of view In the statement made by each one of you, there is a partial truth and if the three points of view are amalgamated the total truth can be realised. The Yogadarshan and the Adhyatma Darshan have compared the current of thoughts to a strean and so it is said that the mind is like a liquid always flowing. You feel that a stream of thoughts is always flowing through your mind. So you are right. The other two frogs are also right because the log of wood is moving and the water also is moving. All the three statements are true'. Those three Frogs said, "How can there be three truths ?". The old Frog said, ''I am not uttering a falsehood". The three frogs said, "He says that our controversy is wrong and that our opinions are wrong, He also says that our opinions are right How can we have a permanent friendship with such a fellow ?". The consequence of its having spoken the truth was that the three frogs united and pushed it into the floods. Sometimes, we too fall into such a situation and we too make such a mistake. We assume that a partial truth is dharma, label it as dharma, fall into heated controversies and destroy the Anekanth view. We should not do so. A partial truth should not be taken to be the whole truth We think that we have a monopoly of truth and we do not 12 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #24 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra realise that we are wrong. This kind of erroneous way of thinking has been coming down to us through generations by the force of time. But we have to accept as right the supreme truth that those ideologies contain. We should realize that the supreme truth always emerges from a relative approach to it or from the Anekanth point of view. All these problems have to be examined only from the relative point of view. Whatever has been thought about all these questions has been thought from the relative point of view. we delve deep into these ideas, what is deemed truth may turn out to be false and what is deemed false may turn out to be the truth. This is a speciality but until now people have been exercising their intellectual potentialities in the wrong manner. They have not exercised their intellectual potentialities in a comprehensive way to realise and visualise the soul. if Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir soul from the They have not endeavoured to realise the point of view of Tatva. The result of this is that we get doubts and we encounter problems in respect of the soul and the dharma and the mind instead of attaining satisfaction goes on entertaining doubts. If we do not satisfy our minds, problems arise. On many occasions such problems arose in the past and therefore, Bhagwan Mahaveer has given the Anekanth or the multi-dimensional point of view. Once, a priest made a decision before the Emperor. The Emperor declared that no one who spoke falsehood should be allowed to enter his kingdom and if any entered the Kingdom, he should be hanged. The Chief Priest said, "All right, Your Highness, I will come here tomorrow and enter the gates of your palace. Let me see how you will hang me". The next morning, the priest came to the gates of the palace, riding on a horse. A guard asked him. "Where are you coming from?" "I have come from a nearby town" said the priest. "What is the purpose of your coming here ?'' The Priest said, "I am to be hanged". A serious problem arose before the King. The soldier said to the King, "Your 13 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #25 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Highness, As soon as this priest came, he spoke the truth. He said that he should be hanged. "Your order is that those who speak the truth should not be hanged". The King feil into thought. A serious complication arose. He was unable to decide what he should do. If I do not hang him, this will be an untruth; and if I hang him, I will be committing a sin because how can a truthful man be hanged ?" His problem had no solution. We are also facing a similar problem. We are facing countless problems which can be solved only by means of the Anekantvad. If you try to solve them by means of the Ekant point of view or your own point of view they cannot be solved. This makes it evident that Dharma is essential. There is a great need of Dharma in life. You see that if Dharma disappears as an ordering force, mere anarchy appears; and there will be no principle that can bring about and maintain order and discipline. Look at our ideals. Look at the ideals of China. Think of the Roman culture. You read the ancient history of any great country. From history, you will realize what kind of point of view was provided by Dharma and how Dharma always emphasized the importance of humanity. How was the administration during the time of Emperor Shri Ramachandra ? Think of the organisation that prevailed in the time of Shri Krishna as it is evident from such magnificent epics as the Mahabharat; and also think of the organization that prevailed earlier than that in the time of Lord Adinath as it is evident from the Jain literature. In those days, there was such an organization that anarchy was unheard of. In those days people believed that commi. tting a sin was tantamount to committing suicide. People believed that if they committed a sin, they had to taste its bitter fruits; and that they would have to face calamities; and that it would go against the ideal of humanity. Dharma would not sanction it; and religion would not permit such actions. Since people acted according to Dharma, 14 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #26 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra all such sinful activities as stealing and immoral activities were totally absent in society. We look at only the external form of Dharma; and we do not realize and visualize its internal form. We do not realize Dharma on the plane of love; but we, for the most part, accept Dharma from the worldly point of view; and for many people Dharma is but an illusion and an aimless rambling. This kind of Dharma gives no satisfaction to us; nor does it help others. True Dharma is the foundation for an ideal social organization; and is the fittest means to keep off anarchy and disorder. If children are brought up in accordance with the ideals of Dharma and if lofty ideals are inculcated into them, there will emerge a society in the future which will be free from all things that go against Dharma. No religion preaches that people should commit thefts; commit violence; should commit sin; should act ignobly; should commit murders or that they should drink liquors. Look into the core of any religion in the world; and you will find that there lies at the core of every religion the ideal of a sublime culture: Hence, Dharma means the acceptance of sublime ideals; and the realization of the essential qualities of the soul. Lord Mahaveer has not given it any label. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Lord Mahaveer has said that anyone who acts according to those sublime ideals becomes a Dharmatma. The word Dharma has been derived from the root Dhri. It means, "Dharanath Dharma uchyate" A Dharmathma is one who accepts and acts upon the essential qualities of the soul. "Durgati Pratata pranat Dharayathi Ithi Dharmah." Dharma is that which prevents you from falling into ignoble thoughts and activities and which restrains you from following the path of evil. The organization that can restrain men from the path of evil can result only from Dharma. Therefore, Dharma has has been deemed absolutely essential to secure propriety and a disciplined way of life. In olden days people used to be They never swerved from the path of 15 For Private And Personal Use Only absolutely honest. Dharma even if it Page #27 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir ment death. Hence sc ciety used to be happy and individuals used be in great joy. Lite was a magnificent harmony and it gave delight to people. Anarchy and ignobility ar pear to the extent to which we keep uif Charma. Humanity has disappeared from us. Derogations have appeared in us; and those derogations have been destorying the individual as well as the society. Hence, Dharma has been deemed an absolute necessity in life. From where did Gandhiji cerive his lofty ideals? He derived them from the examples of great men described in Dharmagranthas. He himselt said that he had derived his ideals from his mother. His mother was a Jain; and his father was a Vaishnav. Theirs was an intercaste marriage. Normally, in Gujarat, Jains and Vaishnavs inter-marry and there is no problem of any kind. Gandhiji's mother used to meet Jain Sadhus. When Gandhiji wanted to go abroad for higher studies and when he sought the permission of his father and mother, his mother gave her consent, after consulting Sadhus. in those days going beyond the seas was considered to be against our traditions. His father raised an objection. His father was ihe Diwan in the court. He objected saying that if he went abroad, he would commit ignoble acts there; and he would lose his native culture under the influence of foreign culture. When Gandhiji made a request to his mother, she said, "Dear son: There is only one way. When Sadhus visit our house, we shall consult them; and if they give their consent or command, I will give my consent". "That noble lady had an extraordinary faith in Sadhus. When our Sadhus went to her house for Gochari (food) she sought their advice and then gave her consent. Gandhi has mentioned this in his Autobiography. In the first chapter of his authobiography he has said that all the affairs of his family were being carried out under the guidance of Sadhus; and that nothing was done in their family without consulting Sadhus. I am trying to impress upon you the point that the guidance of Sadhus is of great importance. 16 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #28 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir When on a certain day some Sadhus visited their house, she said. "Revered sirs! My son wants to go abroad. May he go? Kindly tell us what is proper according to Dharma''. Tire Sadhus said: "You may permit him to go abroad: but take from him three promises. Let him take hese three vows: "I will not eat meat; I will not drink liquors, and I will not develop intimacy with other women" Subsequently Gandhiji took these three vows to keep off those vices that are the gateways to sin and are opposed to our culture and then he went abroad. Gandhiji says that he developed the lofty virtue of non-violence only on account of the influence of those vows; and that on account of those vows, he attained spiritual development and elevation Gandhiji says, “If I had not taken those vows, I would have ruined myself spiritually eating improper food, entertaining improper thoughts; drinking liquors and gambling. A great benefaction has been done to me by those great men and by my mother who saved me from ruin by making me undertake those vows." Therefore, Dharma is essential as a force to organize our life properly; to place a restraint on us and to save us from spiritual ruin. Dharma does not put us in bondage; it does not coerce us to do anything; it does not robus of anything; but on the cont. rary, it guides us and bestows upon us the highest kind of splendour and felicity" Dharma is so useful and beneficial that it gave us a great man like Gandhi and he got us freedom. He brought freedom to crores of people. One man secured freedom from bondage ; and he brought freedom to all from bondage. The point is that one individua! can bring about a revolution in the entire society. Gandhiji used to say. “I can give up food, but I cannot live without offering prayers to the Paramatma." "When he was asked, "From where did your ideas derive their strength ? At your word, hundreds and thousands of people go to jail and hundreds and thousands of people give up their wealth. How can your words exercise such influence ?" Gandhiji gave this reply." I have enshrined in my heart the image 17 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #29 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir of Dharma. I always speak the truth." On hearing this. an American professor asked him, "What is that truth ?" Gandhiji said in reply to that question; "It is evident in my behaviour and my actions. Whenever I speak, 1 speak only the truth. I never take the refuge of falsehood for any reason. Even in the foul atmosphere of politics. I speak only the truth; I have made experiments with truth and ! have achieved success" Whoever would say that he belie ves in untruth and that he has no faith in truth? You seem to believe that, if you utter falsehood you can earn your livelih od or even wealth and that if you speak the truth you will have to suffer poverty. The point is, first of all you have no faith in your own soul. How can a man who lacks taith achieve pertection in life ? Gandhiji declared. "I always act on the basis of my faith in truth. By speaking the truth I may have to face serious calamities or difficulties; I may have to face many ordeals but I am sure that truthfulness will bring a sublime fruit ultimately," A gentleman once asked Gandhiji,, 'Mahatmaji; where find the truth?" can Gandhiji replied, "Nowhere; It is not an article sold in the market so that you may bring it in a basket. One can find the truth in one's own heart. Truth is a quality of the soul and one can get it from one's own soul". Please see this point. Is there any need to teach a person to speak the truth ? is it necessary to teach a person to speak the truth at any time? Will there be any delay in it? Do you have to think about it? No. It is a quality of the soul; a natural quality of the soul. One learns to speak the truth from one's childhood, Truth lies in him and he has to be taught only this point. But a man has to be taught to utter lies. One has to create lies. One has to think thus, "What shall I say now? How should I say it?" Thus, if you utter one falsehood, you have to utter many lies to cover it up. 18 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #30 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Truth is the Dharma (nature) of the soul. Dharma is nothing but accepting and acting upon truth. Each Dharma has its own definition; its own implication depending upon your point of view. The duty that we have to do by our parents is one kind of Dharma. Doing our duty by our Nation is national duty or patriotic duty. Supporting one's family is one kind of Dharma and saving human beings from difficulties and helping them is another kind of Dharma called humanity. So Dharma does not have any single definition. It has many definitions. But there is one comprehensive definition of Dharma and that is:"Purity of the mind''. The supreme Dharma is to purify the soul by discarding its impurities and to liberate the soul from all kinds of derogations. Dharma is, therefore, necessary to help you to organise your life properly. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir You may have a beautiful car, but it will be dangerous to drive in it if it has no brakes. If you drive such a car, there will be, surely, an accident. In the same manner in life also Dharma functions like brakes, placing restraint on our propensities and actions and preventing us from pursuing the path of evil. It prevents you from entertaining ignoble thoughts and feelings. When you follow a wrong path in your life, Dharma stops you from pursuing that path. Therefore, Dharma is deemed an absolute necessity in life, from all points of view. Do you know the consequences of excessive affluence and pleasures? For instance, in America on account of worldliness and excessive wealth, people have gone backwards. They have gone far backwards spiritually, transgressing ethical limitations and ignoring lofty ideals. their affluence has not brought them real satisfaction. have had to go backwards spiritually. fashion having wandered away, has returned. Now some Americans grow tufts like orthodox Indians; they wear the clothes of mendicants; carry or wear garlands of beads and engage themselves in spiritual prayers addressed to the 19 For Private And Personal Use Only But They An ancient Page #31 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Almighty. They say that there is no peace or felicity in affluence or worldliness, The excess of enjoyments causes satiation and vomiting. But they have not brought them mental or spiritual satisfaction. Now they adopt and act upon the sublime ideals of Indian culture which give them felicity. They could not get the joy of prayer and meditation from watching movies in air-conditioned theatres. Now, many Americans in cities like NewYork, Boston and California, wear dhotis like Indians; have tufts like orthodox Indians; wear the holy thread (yajnopavit) and go on singing songs of glory to Lord Krishna. But you are ashamed of even uttering the name of God. In fact, you are ashamed of even going out wearing such dress. But they have accepted our culture. Why? It gives them mental peace. Adhyatma or spirituality is a supreme means by which we can get spiritual serenity. WHAT IS THE MEANING OF MOKSHA ? Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir We carry out our Dharma and we carry out our activities. The Paramatma has said, "Keep doing your duty. Do your duty without expecting any reward for it. It is wrong to expect a reward for your work. The fruit Have faith in your work and do your duty. will naturally follow. We should not do anything expecting a reward for it. We should carry out our Dharma for our spiritual benefit. We should carry out our Dharma with the purpose of helping others. Moksha can be attained naturally. Moksha is nothing but the perfection of life. The light burns. It does its work as long as it burns. But it never thinks of the result of its action. Where does its brightness go, when the light is extinguished? Kindly tell me where its brightness goes? Then I will tell you, where you will go. That brightness disappears and becomes merged with the supreme reality. It disappears; 20 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #32 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir it attains Nirvan. Afterwards it will not come back into the Samsar. That light will not again fall into the bondage of Samsar, because with its disappearance its cause, its effect and its action cease to exist. That is the condition of the soul. That is its perfect state. In that state, there is no consequence, there is no; there is no desire; there is no ambition; there is no temptation; there is no raturn into the Samsar; no cause; no effect; no doer and nothing exists afterwards and that is Moksha. When the soul enters this state, it is said to have attained Moksha. in that state, it will be like a pure, formless light Fifiy lights can merge into one light. In the same manner, countless souls can merge into one soul This has been deemed Nirvan or Moksha. In that state, there will not be any desire. Desire is the root-cause of all sorrows; and when desire gets extinguished. all those sorrows also come to an end; and that is called Moksha. The light disappears; and its work is over. It attains Nirvan; we cannot see it again; and we cannot know it again, and where has that light gone? We cannot know where it has gone. Where has it cone? A substance never gets destroyed If we speak in scientific language. the atom cannot be destroyedIt exists in some form or the other. The atom is indestructible. It has been deemed indestructible in science as well as in our Darshans (Philosophy). So, the atoms of that light, do exist; but are not perceptible. It has become pure and reformed and has attained its original state; and in that state no further transformation can take place in it. It will not enter into bondage again. Nirvana is the attainment of its original state by the soul. When once the soul attains that state of supreme truth, it will have no purpose or intention to return to Samsar again. It will not have any such gravitation; it will not have the attra. ction of Mamatva (attachment), and it will not have any desire or intention of getting back into Samsar. This point 21 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #33 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir has been made clear. I have been explaining this process in a very brief manner, but this matter will come up every day and every day one aspect of it will become clear. Questions have to be taken up in accordance with the time at our disposal. You have understood the necessity of Dharma. That was the first point we discussed. The second question pertains to the result of Dharma. "What is Moksha ?" The third question is; "What is the definition of Dharma ?" I have answered this question by saying that Dharma can have many definitions. Each man finds his own definition according to his conception of it. There can appear distortions in something that has been in existence for a long time. It has to be reformed and it has to be revived, and reawakened. According to Mahaveer, the pure form of Dharma is a quality of the soul; and distortions appear in it because of Samsar. The great Acharyas of the past adopted various methods and media to explain it. Your son does not go to school. You love him. You give him peppermints and chacola les to tempt him to attend his. U.K.G. or L.K.G. classes in a nursery school. He goes to school because of that temptation but he does not realize that going to school will do good to him. He will be angry with you if you force him to go to school and he goes to school because of the temptation. The boy goes to school because he gets four annas and he would not get it if he does not go to school. The boy does not possess the sight to see his future; he does not possess the ripeness of mind and he does not have the necessary mental developent. Sometimes, you may get very angry if he does not yield to the temptation; and you may beat him in anger; but be careful. If you beat him, he will go running to school from fear; but not out of any love for knowledge. You can realize but he cannot realize that education would do him good. But this condition will prevail only upto the end of the primary level. When he goes to the 22 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #34 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir middle school, he will understand the value of knowledge, a little, and when he reaches higher levels, he will go to school or college of his own accord without any need for temptation or force. He thus becomes perfect through the medium of love. This love is said to be of three states. Many times, people may think "'The Maharaj Sahib has been delivering discourses in the Upashraya. I will go there and listen to him. I will go to the temple. From these things I may get some benefit or profit". I say that you will surely get some benefit. I place before people this temptation that they will get some benefit. They will get spiritual and mental peace. Something is better than nothing. Those who keep making some endeavours are better than those who do nothing. If people keep making endeavours, some day, the dawn will surely awaken them. What is there which the Paramatma cannot give us ? He can give all things. He is perfect and he does not belong to a changeable state; and he can know all things directly. He can give us a full knowledge of Dharma. It is not true to say that temptation is always necessary. That is a benefit which can be attained by means of our own noble thoughts and feelings. We seek the refuge of the Paramatma in order to attain liberation from Aham or Egoism or the attachment to the self. We may get this deliverance by the grace of the Paramatma. We may get it by means of our own efforts or by our Prarabdha or Destiny. It is called so because we should get rid of our Aham (ego) and our distortions. We destroy our Aham by saying, "All this is the Paramatma's grace". If you are not susceptible to temptation, there is another method, and that is causing fear in you. I can say "If you do not act thus, you will be punished severely. The consequences will be calamitous". Then you will act from fear. How long? Only until you do not realize the nature of Dharma, If you keep thus progressing, a time will come when you will pursue that path of your own accord with 23 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #35 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir love for salvation and ultimately you will reach the doors of that supreme state. You will attain perfection only when you pursue that path with love. When you reach that state all your questions will cease to exist. You will get answers to all your questions. I have to impel you to pursue the path with love. It is a narrow and difficult passage. You have to reach the Paramatma by means of love. Sant Tulsi Das says that the passage leading to the Paramatma is so na row that only you can pass through it. You cannot carry with you your wealth or prosperity or your family or any such thing. Leaving all such things behind you have to go there alone. The moment you reach the Paramatma in that state you too will become the Para. mata. We cannot go there carrying anything with us. Once a gentleman asked a Sadhu 'May I ask you a question ?". The Maharaj said, 'Where have you come from?" "I have come from Bombay' ,'What is the price of rice in Bombay ?" "The price of rice in Bombay is about 6 or 7 rupees a kg, 'And what is the price of rice in your area ?'' He mentioned the price that prevailed there. The Sadhu asked him about the prices of rice in three or four places and then said, 'I cannot answer the questions of people like you. Your mind is full of prices of rice; you may also have in your mind the prices of other things Your mind is full of Bombay and Calcutta I will answer your questions only if you come to me with only your questions in your mind. First go back; empty your mind of all those irrelevant ideas and come with a single minded desire to know the answer to your questions. You must bring with you only your questions. Only then will you get an answer to your quest:ons. You travel by a double deck bus. You keep thinking of your belongings. Thinking of your belongings, you always keep thinking of the market, your shop and your house and family and with such a mind you put questions about the Bhagwan. The questions can never find answers. 24 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #36 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir If you should get an answer to your questions you must keep your mind free from such worldly things. The point I want to make is that you should not approach spiritual questions with your minds full of worldly thoughts ans: worries. Get rid of such thoughts and come to me. You will get proper answers to your questions. Your own soul will give you its testimony. I am only a means to lead you to the answer. You know that the medium of words is imperfect and incomplete. It is only a medium. You yourself have to attain perfection. IS DHARMA ONE? OR ARE THERE MANY DHARMAS ? IS THERE ANY DIFFERENCE BETWEEN GOD AND THE PARAMATMA ? If we look at it from the prevailing point of view, we find that the various Dharmas that are prevalent are of various ways. Some are very easy. Gods belong to one category or yoni; and they after their span of life ends in heaven have to be reborn in some other state. In heaven among gods, there exist attachments and hatred. There exist among them desires and aspirations. They are capable of bestowing blessings and benefactions on others and of cursing others also. They are more powerful than human beings. The gods belong to tne Devyoni as human beings belong to the Manavyoni. But the Paramatma is perfect, and is not imperfect. The one that is perfect is the Paramatma; and those that have great 'punya' but who are imperfect become heavenly beings, and we do not worship only the Paramatma who can save us.and by his grace we should become Paramatmas; we have to become perfect; we have to attain total deliverance from the aimless wanderings of the Samsar; and we should earn greater and greater spiritual prosperity. We should realize the soul by means of Dharma. By means 25 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #37 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir of Dharma we have to reach our aim. We should attain perfection by means of Dharma. We should liberate our souls from all the agitations of the Samsar. Mahaveer expounded this conception of Dharma. Here one point has to be understood. The Devyoni, the heavenly state of existence is a different one; but those who have attained to the state of Mahaveers and great men like Shri Ram; who have attained Moksha need not return to Samsar. Those lights that have become extinguished; whose oil has been exhausted, need not burn here again. They have to attain brightness only from thought. They have gone away; have attained perfection; and when once any soul attains that level, it becomes a Paramatma. In this world, the same substance may be called by different names. You may deem it different under different names. The substance is one; but its names are many. There are various Dharmas. We have such Dharmas as Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Vedic Dharma; Dwaita, Advaita, Mimamsa; Yogadarshan. Vaisheshik and various others;. and there are many ideologies. Mahaveer also has shown a way. He preached. "You can attain Moksha by discarding all your distortions and by making a total sacrifice." The purpose of your existence is not to keep wandering in Samsar; but to reach your destination. Samsar is not to be retained. There is a great difference between retaining it and wandering through it. The Paramatma says that the jivas are pilgrims in samsar. You must carry out your pilgrimage and reach your destination. Only then can it be a pilgrimage. We have entered this state not to keep wandering but to realize our aim. We should reach our destination. There are various Dharmas. There are various kinds of ideologies in this world. You may bring milk from some dairy. If the cow which gives the milk is black, how would the milk be? What would be its colour ? Whether the cow is white or red or yellow or brindled, the milk it gives is white. You may attach any label to Dharma, it is essentially 26 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #38 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Dharma. Dharma is the same at all places and times though it may be called by different names How can there be two Dharmas? The substance is the same; but it is called by various names. We can give a description of the cow. So also we can name the various Dharmas in this world such as Jainism, Hinduism and Buddhism. I am not concerned with the labels. We should not think of labels; we should think of the material. Dharma is one but it is described in various ways from various points of view. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir If one aspect is properly understood and explained, it is as good as understanding or explaining the whole subject. If we taste one grain of rice, we can make out the taste of all the other grains in the heap. You understand first by yourself the Dharma relating to your soul, then you will naturally understand and assimilate the truth that lies at the core of all Dharmas. You can attain perfection in respect of Dharma by amalgamating and assimilating all the other Dharmas. Some people approached Sant Tulasi Das and said to him, "Swamiji! What is Dharma ? What is religion?" Tulasi Das replied. "If you get into the jungle of the creeds and sects and Shastras and granthas that abound in this world, you will lose yourself in their midst. You lose yourself in the crowd of Shastras and ideologies. You will not find the vital essence of those Shastras. We will undsrstand only the body; not the soul of those ideologies and Shastras". SEEK THE MEANING; NOT THE WORDS The one who asks questions seeks only a knowledge of the body or the externals; not its soul. What is its essence ? What is its mystery? I am not interested in the words; but I seek their cream or essence. We seek butter not butter-milk. We should be interested not in 27 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #39 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir he cover but in the cheque in it. is there a cheque in it or not? The envelop is not important. The granthas tabound in words and phrases but we should not be interested in mere words and phrases. We should not waste our time over them. What does the Grantha say? What ideals are expounded in it? What is its import? We should seek it; and accept it. If you seek a special knowledge in any field, you have to approach the specialists in the various fields. If you want to get your teeth examined, you must approach a dentist. If you want to get your eyes tested, you have to approach an optician. If you need a special knowledge of any subject, you must approach the specialist in that subject. He can explain the meaning t you with a greter authority than mine. It will be useful if you ask him the question relating his field. If you ask me questions relating to my field, I can give you proper answers. He who seeks te word merely forgets the soul of the word. His understanding gets limited to the sound or the word. The word is the body of the Paramatma : its inner meaning is its soul. We should see the soul; otherwise, that object will be meaningless. Once a priest who was walking on a road happened to fall into a well. Just at that time, a Sadhu happened to pass by. Tie priest was screaming "I am dying. Please save me". The poor Sadhu was kind-hearted and benevolent. When he looked into the well, he found the Priest hanging dangerously clinging to a stone. He was in danger of being drowned. He appealed to the Sadhu, "Oh you great man. Kindly save me". The Sadhu clung to the letter ignoring the spirit. He held on to the word but did not realize the mystery implied in it. The packing was cared for ; but the goods were lost The Sadhu began saying: "Dear man ! My supreme 28 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #40 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir doctrine is that Moksha cannot be attained unless and until the Karmas are destroyed. What a beautiful oppor. tunity you have got of destroying your Karmas. You are going to be liberated totally from the cycle of birth and death. If I save you from death now you will bring about a new Samsar; and new problems will arise and every day, the conflicts in your life will increase. You will commit many sins; and you will have to face countless calamities, "The soul commits sins and will have to taste the bitter fruits of those sins". You have got an opportunity to destroy your Karms and I do not want to place impediments on your way. This is a supreme means to realize the soul. Receive with equanimity what has been given to you". The Priest said, "I am going to die". The Sadhu said: "What does it matter if you die ? ! do not want to commit the sin of saving you. If save you from death, you will again commit sins''. The Priest said, "This is really strange! This Sadhu has ignored the meaning of words. He is merely sticking to the literal meaning of words"! After that there came, by chance, a political leader, His habit was to deliver lectures. The Priest was screaming with fear and anguish while the leader had been looking for an opportunity to deliver a lecture. The leader came there; and saw the Priest. He was crying out for help. "I am dying. Save me." The leader was happy to find this opportunity to deliver a lecture. He said, "It does not matter if you die now. One man's death is not very serious; but countless people must be facing this danger now in my constituency; and in our country. This kind of thing should not be allowed to continue. I am concerned with the welfare of the society. The 29 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #41 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra life of one individual does not matter. I should save all people from such a calamity. Let Parliament meet next. I will place before it a bill demanding that around all the wells in all our villages throughout the country stonewalls should be built, You need not worry. I will certainly take up this matter and see that this problem is solved I will see that the bill is passed. Don't worry". But now i am dying: "You may do all that later. save me". Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir "It is absolutely necessary to build walls around wells. What does it matter if one man dies. You do not realize the point. Let Parliament meet. I will bring a bill before it and I will see that it is passed unanimously. difference does it make whether you live or die. What "The difference ? I will be dying". "If you die my task will be easy. You will become a martyr. I will make use of your case as an example. I will tell them. I will tell them that a man died falling into a well; and that will add strength to my demand."' "My dear man, you may gain strength from my case: but I am going to lose my life". This was a great problem. Sometime later, by chance a Philospher came there. He believed that the highest ideal was to render service to others, The Priest was crying in anguish. "Oh! I am dying. Please save me". As soon as he saw the Priest in that condition, he brought a rope; let it down and hauled him up. The Priest felt grateful to him. Philosopher said, "My The 30 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #42 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Ideal is to render service to others and help them when they are in distress. Only a man who renders service to others reaches heaven. Service is my greatest Dharma. Dear sir, you have bestowed upon me a great benefaction by failing into the well; and you have given me an opportunity to render service to a man in distress. By falling into the well you have given me an opportunity to render service. If you kindly fall into the well again you will give me, another opportunity of earning Punya" Saying this, he pushed him into the well. The Priest sald, "Oh! What are you doing?" The Philosopher said, "I desire opportunities to render service to people again and again. I get very few opportunities of rendering service to people". The Priest said, "If you throw me into the well thus, you will kill me". If people understand Dharma and Dharmagranthas thus taking only the externals and ignoring the spirit, it would be only defaming the Paramatma. If you act thus, you will be bringing a disgrace to Shastras. You will defame the Paramatma by such actions. We should comprehend the spirit behind the words and we should accept from all Dharmas whatever is great in them; and whatever is good from the point of view of humanity. Sant Tulsi has also said: "All the granthas and all the Dharmas of the world teach two sublime truths: "If you give happiness, you will get happiness. If you give sorrow, you will get sorrow". The great poet and seer has given a short and sweet precept in two statements. Give happiness to others; and you will get happiness. Cause sorrow to others; and you 31 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #43 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra wifi get sorrow. Only those who give joy to others, can experience joy in their lives. He who kills others or causes violence or anguish to others can never live and can never experience jcy. This is proved by history. Those mighty heroes who massacred large numbers of people, were themselves killed and destroyed. The mighty perish in their own might. The mighty who strutted across this world fretting and fuming have gone into the depths o oblivion. What other practical Dharma do you need? Causing violence and anguish to others is Adharma. But if you give happiness you will get happiness. This law of nature is irrevocable and unshakeable. Nature's laws e lasting. You must live in harmony with those sublime laws. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir The sound 'A' appears in al! Dharmas. What is the meaning of: "Om Shantih, Shantih, Shantih." how he There is a science of words by means of which this atmosphere can be created. In the first letter of every word a tremendous power lies hidden. Express your ideas or thoughts and you will find that they possess a mysterious harmony. The spirit of beauty lies latent in the sound. Omkarnath Takur was regarded as the emperor of the realm of music. Once, he went to Italy. You know what kind of man Mussolini was, and conducted himself during the second World War. He was an ally of Hitler. He was a great war-monger and the dictator of Italy, Hearing people praise Omkarnath, he sent for him ; and said: "Dear sir! I do not get sleep. I take sleeping tablets, but they do not have any effect upon me". Such people would have lost their mental peace. The man who hates others loses his own mental peace. Agitations destroy mental peace and consequently such people do not get a wink of sleep. The great dictator, Mussolini added: "Kindly suggest a method by which ! can get sleep. My mind is deeply agitated and I may become mad". 32 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #44 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Omkarnath was a mighty master of the Indian Classical music. He knew that Brahma abides in sound and that the word contains tremendous potentialities. When Mahaveer delivered his discourses, his listeners heard him with rapture forgetting hunger and thirst. They lost all count of time while floating on those sublime waves of tofty thoughts. Omkarnath achieved a similar miracle with the magic of his music. He said to Mussolini : "I will render a song. You listen to it; and you will surely get sweet and sound sleep". "Will you surely enable me to sleep ?** "Surely. You will certainly get sleep". He had that confidence. He took up the Tanbura and sang a song. He rendered the alapana of a Raga. How cruel and heartless Mussolini was ! He was said to be a heartless man, since he had massacred millions of people. That very man slept soundly on hearing the song sung by Omkarnath Takhur. This was the miracle that Omkarnath performed with his art. This was the miracle of art. This was the power of music. The tune of words; The harmony of sweet music. Using today's scientific terminology we should call it ultrasonic sound. He revealed the mystery of sounds. It could melt away even the adamantine heart of Mussolini. This harmony of subtie atoms of sounds can cause vibrations even in diamonds. Music can melt away even stones. That means, there lies, latent, dormant but potent, a power in the word and in the rhythm of utterance. Intellectually any sound might express any sense, if we are agreed upon an equivalence between them; but it started from an indefinable quality in the sound to raise certain vibrations in the soul of man. True utterance combines the highest intensity of rhythmic movement, the highest intensity of interwoven verbal form and substance and the highest intensity of the vision of truth. Hence, 'rhythm brings about 33 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #45 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir serenity in us. Its harmony and its haunting echoes fill us with felicity and serenity. When we go to the temple of the Paramatma; and when we begin chanting hymns to glorify him, we begin by uttering the sound 'Aum.' This sound echoes from the corners of the sancto-sanctorum and begins to reverberate in our ears; and it functions like a medicine that brings us spiritual elevation. The temple is constructed in accordance with the principles of architecture or Vasthushilpa. and the sanctosanctorum is built in such a way that it produces echoes of our utterances. You might have seen the petrographs and sculptures of Mistra. They echo medlodies and rhythms. They can be uttered in various ways and those rhythmic sounds produce in us certain emotions. Dead bodies were buried there nearly three thousand years ago; but even to-day, they exist in their original form. The architecture of our temples is of this kind. When we chant the Mantra 'Om' sitting in a temple, the pudgals of the Bhashavargana collide against the walls; return to us in the form of echoes; and pervade our bodies and souls. They function like some efficacious medicine. If you go to the temple and prostrate before the Paramatma, if you perform Panchang Pranipat, any kind of he adache that might be ailing you disappears. Carry out this austerity and verify for yourselves the truth of this. This sound is so efficacious that it dispels any kind of headache that might be agitating you. If you perform a Panchang pranipat, before the Paramatma and if you utter the sound 'Om' from the depths of your soul, it will echo; and will produce such vibrations in the air that they fill your soul; and dispel your headache whatever might be the cause for it. You will at once regain mental peace. At the beginning of every Mantra, at the beginning of every observance and at the beginning of every spiritual austerity and activity the word "Om" is uttered in the Jain, Buddhistic and Hindu or Vedic traditions. 'Om' includes 34 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #46 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir 'Aum'. Thus in every Dharma in some way or the other, this sound appears; and this sound has the purpose of giving us serenity. It has no other purpose. this sound app Among Jains, the mantra 'Aum' is uttered along with the names of the Panchaparmeshtis, and it comprises the first sounds of the names of the five Parameshtis. Shri Namaskar Mahamatra is the greatest among the Jain mantras. The five letters at the beginning of the names of the five Parameshtis are combined into 'Aum'. 'A' signifies Arihant. An Ashariri is one who has attained Moksha; and who is bodiless. A and A joining have become 'Aa' according to the grammatical rule which says that when the same vowel sounds combine with the corresponding vowel sounds, they become Dirgas long sounds (Savarnadirga sandhi). 'Aa' signifies Acharyas. The 'u' of the word Upadhyaya combining with it has become 'O' or 'Au'; and when the 'm' sound of the word Muni is joined to it, it becomes 'Aum'. Thus the Arihanth, the siddhas, the bodiless ones, the Acharyas; the Upadhyayas and Munis (Sadhus) are implied in the sound (Aum). So, we deem it the Parameshti Beejamantra. It gives such importance to the Jain conception of the Panchaparameshtis. This is the Pranabeej for Jains. (the life-mantra). This sound 'Aum' purifies the external atmosphere; and brings about a similar purification of your innerself. Whatever observance or austerity or Japa you commence, that Mantra clears your way; discards and dispels all impurities and spreads the fragrance of sanctity. When we utter this Beejakshara mantra of the Panchparameshtis, when we pronounce the pudgal paramanus of this mantra, it gives mental firmness and serenity. This is its purpose; and this is its scientific explanation. If it is uttered with faith, it bestows upon us spiritual strength. Nothing can be attained in the absence of faith, I may preach and you may listen to me; but all that serves no purpose if you do not have faith. A priest once said, "Ah! What do you know about God ? 35 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #47 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Even if I jump down a height uttering the name of God, my feet will not be hurt. I am absolutely sure of it." A friend said to him, "I Know very well that you will not be hurt even if you jump down a house uttering the name of God. I am sure of it." But the man had no faith; so he added: "I cannot believe that it is a miracle wrought by your devotion. By chance, you may not be hurt when you leap down a house. What miracle is there in it? Why do you bring in God here ? It can happen by chance." The Priest said, I have to create faith in you. You must become faithful. If I am not hurt when I jump down a house for the second time, you will develop faith "' • "Even that may happen by chance. Many times people fail from a plane and do not die. What do you say? There is nothing great in this." The priest was not a psychologist to find out whether the man had approached him with faith or with the purpose of merely arguing with him. Faith is the plane on which Dharma can be attained. The absence of faith makes a man averse to Dharma. There is no point in preaching to such an unfit person Why should I deliver a discoure when the people before me who sit listening to me have no desire to know the meaning of my words. The priest ventured a third time and said, "I will go to the top of the prayer-hall for the third time and jump down the top to the ground uttering the name of God and if I am not hurt for the third time, will you believe at least then that God has power and he can save a devotee from any calamity?'' The friend said, "Dear Priest ! In that case you must surely join a circus company, because you seem to have mastered the art of jumping down any height without being hurt. I have not seen such a performance anywhere. It will be an interesting item in a circus." 36 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #48 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir The priest said, "To hell with your questions ! I have tried to inspire faith in you. But you are absolutely devoid of faith and you have taken me away from a prayer-hall and led me to a circus by your scepticism". The summary of all this is that answers can be given to the questions of only those people who ask questions with a genuine faith and whose questions emerge from the depths of their contemplations. We can provide answers to the questions of those who approach us with a genuine desire to know the answers; with a genuine love for the Paramatma; and with a deep thirst for knowledge. Their thirst can be satisfied and it is natural that their thirst should be satisfied. But if people come to us to display their intellectual abilities; merely with the purpose of arguing for a argument's sake; merely for the fashion of it, we cannot satisfy them and we have no time for such people. They should have the necessary fitness to know the answer. Only then will it be easy for us to enlighten them. Discourses and discussions will be useful to such people. WHAT IS THE MEANING OF THE ACTION WHICH IS MORAL AND WHICH IS WITHIN MORAL LIMITS? Let us suppose that there is a coin with you. It has two sides, of course. So also morality and Acharan (activity) are like the two sides of the same coin. Morality is Acharan and Acharan is morality and if we conform to morality it wil be easy to attain Dharma. Morality is said to be the life-giving force to Dharma. It is like the oxygen for the life of Dharma. In fact, according to us morality and action are synonyms, two names for the same thing. They complement each other. They strengthen each other. Sadachar or noble conduct is nothing but manifesting moral values in the form of actions. Morality is not different from noble conduct, or Sadachar. Noble conduct is the life of Dharma because it is the energy that gives life to 37 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #49 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Oharma. We should show our Dharma not in words bur in actions ; not in the form of intention but in the form of action. WHAT IS THE MEANING OF PUNYA AND PAPA ? These have a very clear meaning. Punya results from noble conduct. Punya is that quality which helps the development of our soul. That action which helps our spiritual elevation is Punya. Papa is that which causes spiritual ruin or decline. Whatever you do with a noble intention; and whatever benevolence you bestow upon others will bring you Punya. If you render a deed of charity; if you bestow some benefaction upon others; if you do deeds of benevolence, kindness and of love ; and if you entertain noble thoughts, you will get Pupya. If you entertain evil thoughts, if you ca'lse worry and agitation to others; If you cause violence to others or kill others; if you get angry: if you do anything that is unpleasant or painful to others; you will earn Papa or sinful Karma. That which is not acceptable to the soul is Papa ; and that which is acceptable to the soul is Punya. There is a clear and comprehensive definition "Benevolence brings Punya ; Malevolence brings Papa" A certain lover of knowledge asked Bhagwan Vyasa once, 'Revered sir! I have no time to study the eighteen Puranas. Kindly tell me briefly what Panya and Papa are Vyasa gave this reply : Vyasa has expounded two principles in the 18 Puranas. "Benevolence brings Punya. Malevolence brings Papa" Please remember that those words were uttered by Vyasa Maharshi. That is his summary ot the eighteen Puranas. WHAT IS CONTEMPLATION (CHINTAN) ? WHAT CAN IT BE CALLED ? 38 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #50 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir WHAT ARE ITS FRUITS ? Chintan (contemplation) is a divine fire. It is a divine 'flame. It is such a terrible fire that it can burn away sinful Karmas (Papa). Fire has such a power that if it Teaches 1500° centigrade it can melt away even iron. At that level it can melt iron and copper, If it reaches a high degree of heat, it can melt all substances. In order to burn away our Karmas, we need the divine fire called contemplation or Chintan. It can destroy and burn away all our sinful Karmas. It burns all our karmas to ashes. It burns away Karmas once for all. Such a state of spiritual purity is brought about by contemplation. It is a fire. As is our thought; so is our contemplation. Chinta worry) burns us; but Chintar (contemplation) burns away all our Karmas. Chinta causes Samsar; and Chintan brings Moksha. Discard your worry (Chinta) and enter the state of contemplation (Chintan). As soon as you enter the state of contemplations, you will realize what the perfect and pure state of the soul is: Why should we destroy our anger, deception, jealousy, infatuation etc ? Why should we practise Brahmacharya or celibacy? Anger, deception, jealousy and infatuation are evil qualities. We should practise Brahmacharya to destroy themh What can an individual do? Where there is no strengt. in him, how can he struggle against evil propensities and conquer them? We require strength to fight. From where can we derive strength ? How can our contemplations become strong ? We can attain the necessary strength from Brahmacherya, Brahmacharya is the foundation for our spiritual growth; and for the growth of every virtue in us. It is the life of every spiritual austerity. Everywhere in life Brahmacharya 39 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #51 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir is necessary; but it may be a total renunciation of sexual desires; or it may be a partial renunciation as in the case of noble people and those who practise monogamy. in one of these forms, it is essential; there is no greatness in anything without it. No one can achieve any spiritual elevation without it. It is absolutely essential in life. It is essential as a primary step in our spiritual endeavours. How can you quarrel with anger? How can noble thoughts arise in you? Noble thoughts arise in us only if our conduct is noble and the thoughts that arise from noble conduct are strong. They will be strong like the offspring of lions. They should be so strong as to destroy Karmas for ever. Those elevated thoughts will take you upto the level of Vitrag. They will lead you to the sublime level of total renunciation. F Every Dharma prescribes some principles of self-restraint and rules of conduct. Without such values, no progress can be attained. In their absence. we will not have the strength to carry out our spiritual endeavours. Would you carry out a struggle ? You will simply be defeated; even there intelligence is essential; and intellectual incisiveness, is essential. You should think; "Thus | should struggle. I should use my intelligence in my struggle". Wherever man uses his intelligence, he will atain success. Such a man aims at two things with a single arrow. He aims at discarding Samsar and attaining Dharma. Two birds at one shot : Have you understood the point? We too have to end the Samsar and Karmas that cause Samsar by means of Brahmacharya. We have to hit at both the places : and we require vitality. We get that vitality by means of noble conduct and Brahmacharya. We derive that energy from Brahmacharya. How can the light burn if there is no oil in the lamp ? How can there be strength in the absence of Brahmacharya ? It is always important. Spiritual austerities should be carried out only while practising 40 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #52 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Brahmacharya. Otherwise they are not useful. If you carry out a spiritual austerity, without Brahmacharya it wil be like a dead body; and from such spiritual austerities, you can get no benefit. Many times, people become infatuated with the idea that they have carried out spiritual austerities; but the austerities they have carried out are like a dead body. When we ask them if they have carried out any spiritual austerity, they would say arrogantly that they have carried out such austerities, A gentleman married a girl in a village. The people ot that village had a convention according to which his wife could not be sent with him for a month. They requested him to take his wife with him, one month later. When he returned alone to his village, his friends made fun of him. They said : "You think you are making a joke. You say that you are married. You are only boasting. It cannot be true that you are married". One said, "If you are really married where is your wife ?" "My wife is in her father's house. She will come here a month later". "You are merely uttering a lie. You are boasting that you are married but you are not". The man felt very unhappy. His pride was offended. He thought : "I am speaking the truth; but these people say that I am uttering a lie". He went back to the village of his wife. He asked his wife whether she would accompany him to his village. She expressed her readiness to go with him. His father-in-law and mother-in-law also said "Since you are insisting upon taking your wife to your place now, we have no objection". At last, his wife set off with 41 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #53 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir him to his place, bit on the way they had to cross a river. She sait, "Dear husband! How can I wade through water? The myrtle painted on my feet will be washed away. If the myrtle-paint is washed away, all the pains took to paint my feet will be wasted". Her husband said to her, "Be cautious! Your paint shall remain intact". He was a strong man. He lifted his wife and held her head downwards so that her feet might not touch water, and thus he crossed the river carrying her: The girl had died. Though she was dead, he carried hes to his village and said to the people there, "Look here, I have brought my wife". "Dear man ! What a tragic thing has happened! Your wife is dead", said a friend of his. "She might have lost her life, but she has not lose her paint". We too act in the same manner. We may carry out spiritual austerities. We may perform Japa, but if we carry out those activities without the virtue of brahmacharya, those activities will be like a dead body. They are devoid of the soul of Dharma. We should not carry out spiritual activities without the basis of brahmacharya and noble conduct. Our Dharma does not approve of such soulless spiritual austerities. WHAT IS THE ADVANTAGE OF BATHING IN THE GANGA ? In the Hindu and the Vaidic traditions bathing in the Ganga is said to be supremely efficacious in washing away our sins. The Ganga is glorified as the giver of life. It satisfies our thirst and bestows great benefactions upon us; the Ganga is intimately interwoven with our culture. Of course, the Ganga bestows many great benefits upon us from the social or the worldly point of view, but even if you bathe in the Ganga a hundred times, it cannot wash your sins away if your mind is not clean. When that is So what is the greatness of taking a bath in the Ganga ? 42 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #54 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Once Guru Nanak was staying in Haridwar on the banks of the Ganga. A certain brahmin who had just then come there after having bathed in the Ganga felt thirsty and wanted to go back to the river to drink water. Guru Nanak said to him, "Dear sir! I have a vessel with me which has been cleaned three times and it contains the fresh water of the Ganga. You drink this water". Tne Brahmin said, "your vessel is polluted". What a strange thing! How can this vessel be impure? It does not commit any sin. It does not act ignobly against Dharma. It does not hate anyone. Moreover, I have washed it three times in the Ganga water and if the water of the Ganga has not purified this vessel, how can it purify you?" What reply could the brahmin give? The purport of the story is that we do not realise the true significance of taking a bath in the Ganga. A bath in the Ganga will be meaningful only when we realise its significance. A mere bath in the Ganga cannot wash away our sins. We should realise that we cannot wash away our sins by just diving into the Ganga. Punya cannot be earned so easily. Our sins have to be washed away by means of spiritual austerities. Otherwise, we have to experience the bitter fruits of our sins. A bath in the Ganga has been considered beneficial because it has some medicinal powers. The water of the Ganga flows down the heights of the Himalayas. It flows over countless medicinal plants. Many minerals get dissolved into it. It flows over various kinds of soils. So, it has the power of destroying all harmful germs and bacteria. This is the reason why the water of the Ganga has been considered sacred. In our Dharma, we use the sacred water of the Ganga in all auspicious and holy activities such as the Anjan Shalaka (applying collirium to the eyes of the image of 43 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #55 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir the Lord in the temple) and other such activities, because the water of the Ganga is holy. It is considered sacred because it has such a tremendous power that it can bestow serenity upon our minds which are agitated by various kinds of thoughts. Moreover the provoked thoughts and passions become pacified by the water of the Ganga. A bath in the Ganga has no other significance than this. What other signfficance could be there? Taking a bath in the Ganga is one thing; attaining purity is another thing. What is essential is that the soul should take a bath, not the body. It is the purification of the soul that is important; not the purification of the body. IF WE SHOULD BE SATISFIED WITH WHAT WE HAVE, THEN, WHY SHOULD WE ENTERTAIN ANY LOFTY ASPIRATION ? We should entertain a lofty aspiration to achieve spiritual elevation. We should aspire to realise and visualise the Paramatma. Aspirations are necessary to attain some lofty and auspicious objectives. But, in the case of samsar or worldly existence, self-satisfaction is necessary, and high ambitions for wordiy advancement are not wholesome. In this samsar, you should live contented with what you have naturally and by your destiny. But in order to attain spiritual elevation and self-realisation we should entertain aspirations. In this sphere, discontentment must be always there impelling us to rise higher and higher spiritually. We should always think "When can I attain perfection ? When can attain spiritual elevation ? When can I attain the love of the Paramatma ? When can I attain his grace ?". In the language of spiritual philosophy: We must have discontentment in respect of our desire to attain spiritual elevation; we should have avarice to attain the Paramatma; we should steal virtues. These are not sins, if one pursues perfection. Aspiration does not mean the desire to loot the samsar; it does not mean the desire to live by killing others; This kind of aspiration 44 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #56 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir is of no use ; on the contrary, it causes spiritual ruin. We should have the right aspiration : It must be accompanied with self-restraint and propriety. This kind of aspiration is essential because without such a lofty aspiration how can there be any spiritual attainment ? WHY IS OCHRE-DRESS SYMBOLIC OF RENUNCIATION IN BHARATH ? in Bharath, ochre-dress has been considered symbolic of renunciation. This dress has various kinds of significance. Since, it is a symbol of a spirit of detachment and since our attitudes are conditioned by it, it serves the purpose of suppressing or even removing our sexual cravings. It suppresses it mental and emotional distortions. From the psychological point of view our dress has its own imperceptible impact on our mental and emotional propensities. If you put on an excellent suit and tie and spray some fine scent upon your dress, at once your latent and dormant sensual desires become patent and potent. As soon as an opportunity or a provocation appears, your latent sensual desires wake up and grow intense. If you take a bath without scenting the water and wear plain white dress like us or ochrous dress, all your sensual desires and thoughts become suppressed. It is for this reason that one day I narrated an incident from the life of Ravan. Ravan abducted Sita and brought her to Lanka. He tried repeatedly to win her favour but she was absolutely averse to him. His friends gave him the advice, "You are a Vidyadhar and you are capable of assuming any form. You have that power. Therefore, assume Rama's form and features; put on ochrous dress like Rama and Sita will at once accept your amorous advances". Ravan replied, "I tried that method also several times, but whenever I assumed the form of Rama and put on 45 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #57 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir ochre- dress, my thoughts and emotions, underwent a similar transformation in consonance with the dress and feautures of Rama". Ravan possessed such tremendous yogic powers that he could assume any form. When he put on ochre- dress, all his sexual desires disappeared and his passion for Sita also became totally pacified. Ravan said, "Whenever I tried this method, this happened and so I gave up that attempt''. Dress has its own imperceptible impact on our mental and emotional propensities. Our clothes influence and condition our thoughts and feelings. If you put on simple and plain dress your thoughts and feelings also will grow plain and pure. If you put on colourful and gaudy dress, it will have an undesirable effect on your mind. In the great work, "Dharma Bindu", this point relating to dress and decorations, in accordance with place and environment and propriety, is mentioned. We will take up this matter later. I will not go into details now. THE INDIAN CULTURE STANDS FOR TOLERANCE, WHY? in India, there are various kinds of people with vari. ous kinds of faiths and beliefs. But there is a great ideal prevalent in our country. According to this ideal every individual is free to follow his own Dharma. Every individual is free to carry out the activites relating to his Dharma. This is a speciality in India culture. Our Aryan culture is tolerant Tolerance is the essence of the Aryan culture. It is to be noted that Indians never used coercion or never fought wars for the sake of religion. They never converted people of other faiths to their own faith by using temptations, and if at all they converted people to their faith, they did so by effecting a genuine transformation of the hearts and minds of those people. The doors of our culture are kept open to those who accept the ideals of our culture; who love this culture, but we never used the sword to compei people to accept 46 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #58 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir our Dharma. This kind of error has not been com nitted by us at any time. Our Indi an Government has prepared a constitution which is secular so that all need not follow the same Dharma against their wishes. In the whole world only our Government has prepared a secular constitution so that every individual can follow the religion of his choice. This policy may require some compromise on the part of everyone but it is a great policy and it has to be kept up. This philosophy of tolerance has been the essence of Indian culture. IDOL - WORSHIP, BIRTH, DHARMA BASED ON BIRTH, CASTE AND RELIGION - SHOULD WE BELIEVE IN THESE THINGS? Lord Mahavir has stated in a Shloka, all that is to be said about this subject. When Lord Mahavir was asked, "What is the relation between birth and Dharma ?'' He gave this reply. "We do not have faith in casteism". Caste system was introduced as a means of social organisation. It was based on division of labour. 1 do not mean that the caste system introduced by the great sages of tho past is erroneous, The system began as a means of social organisation. He clearly declared that a man becomes a Brahmana or a Kshatriya or a Vaisya or a Shudra by his actions, not by birth. It will be nothing but hypocrisly to accept birth as determining one's caste. Mahavir declared, "A man becomes, what he becomes by his actins." You may be a brahmin or Jain by birth, but if your thoughts and actions are ignoble, you cannot be deemed either a brahmin or a Jain If a person who is a shudra by birth, entertains noble thoughts and acts nobly, he deserves respect. That is why we give the diksha to any individual irrespective of caste or creed. In the Jain tradition, eighty five percent of the Jain Acharyas from the time of Mahavir upto the present day are brahmins. Even to-day, our 47 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #59 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir greatest Jain Acharya, Meruprabha Soori is a brahmana. So we feel grateful to that caste. Very great scholars and men of intellectual incisiveness became our Acharyas and composed many of our Dharma Grantas, Lord Mahavir accepted the importance of actions. You must become noble by conduct. If your conduct is ignoble, you cannot claim any importance by your caste. Only those who are ignobl : in thought belong to a low group because they do not have even the power of understanding great truths. Such people are not fit to carry out spiritual activities. Lord Mahavir has made this point absolutely clear. He gave all importance to action and conduct. But somehow importa ce has been attached to birth. WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN KNOWLEDGE AND DHARMA ? Knowledge is radiance and Dharma moves in the light of Knowledge. Knowledge is light. Dharma is to proceed in the right direction only in the light of Knowledge. Dharma can move properly and in the right direction only in the light of Knowledge. If Knowledge is lame or dim. Dharma becomes blind. Once a conflict arose between the two. This conflict could not be digested by knowledge but Dharma liked it. It said, "I am something. How can there be any movement without me." By chance, the two kept away from each other. Once a fire broke out in a forest and surrounded them. Dharma and knowledge were caught in the fire. There was a gentleman. Every day, he used to pick quarrels with others. He also went to court. The judge said to him, "You seem to be always picking quarrels with someone or the other and with the members of your own family. Were the members of your family united at any time ?" 48 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #60 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir The man said, "Yes, my lord ! It happened once. We were all at home. Suddenly fire broke out and we at once became united forgetting our differences." Dharma and Knowledge were separated. Each was facing a problem, Dharma said, "I can move." Knowledge said, "I can give brightness". Dharma said, "Sit upon my shoulders'. Knowledge sat upon the shoulders of Dharma. It gave light to Dharma. The two thus escaped from the burning forest. In the great granta TATVARTHADHIGAM, Upaswathi says, "Moksha can be attained only with Knowledge and action". Knowledge and Dharma cannot exist separately. One has to move in the light of the other. AT THE PRE SENT THOSE WHO HAVE ACQUIRED WEALTH BY UNLAWFUL AND IMMORAL METHODS AND WHO ARE INFATUATED WITH PHYSICAL PLEASURES HAVE BECOME EXAMPLES TO OTHERS". WHY SHOULD WE NOT TAKE THEIR EXAMPLE ? We cannot answer the questions of those who neglect Brahma (the spiritual reality) and are fascinated by wordly things. We can give answers to the questions of those who look into themselves and try to realize themselves. Crowds throng cinema theatres; but here we have an audience fit though few. Here we have a filtered audience. We should not care to take interest in the affairs of the world. We should see what we are doing; not what the world is doing. Once there were four friends. They together set off to Puna. They also bought tickets. They were very fond of drinking liquors. They drank heavily forgetting themselves in their intoxication. They began moving towards the station. They had to go to V.T. but they went to Bombay Central and sat in a train which was going to Gujarat. The train began speeding. At Dadar, the ticket-inspector came to check tickets and he came to them. He saw the ticket of one of them. That was for Puna. He said that 49 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #61 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir they were travelling by a wrong train. He checked the ticket of the second one and told him the same thing. The first one said, "You are wrong". When he checked the third one's ticket, he found that, he too was travelling by the wrong train. The fourth one was a little in his senses; and he also knew something about politics. He said, "In which world are you living ? Ours is a democratic government. In a democratic set-up, the majority is right. We are in a majority. We are naturally right and obviously you are wrong". Dharma always leads us in the right path. That is the point I want to make. It does not move on the path, you prescribe. In the sphere of Dharma, it is not quantity but quality that matters. We should not think of the world, o of ourselves but of the lord of the universe. We emulate not vices; but virtues. WHY SHOULD WE PERFORM THREE CIRCUMAMBULATIONS IN THE TEMPLE ? There is something rotten in our system of education and in our universities. Students do not acquire culture or real education; but they become spiritually ruined. Dr. S. Radhakrishnan said, "In india to-day, we need character building; not education". "There is a great Indian statement Education should liberate us from ignobility. An ideal education system is that which helps students to build up their character, which inspires lofty ideals in them; and which inspires noble thoughts in them. To-day, one may get a certificate easily. Where Knowledge is not properly digested, arrogance appears, and the development of life ceases, Education should inspire in students the lofty ideal of benevolence. The present-day educational system is harmful. Lord Macualay laid the foundation of this system. He has written in his diary : "In case, in future, the English 50 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #62 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir will have to leave India, they may go away but their language will remain in India and the English way of life will remain, in India. These things will remain in India. Indians would adopt them with love and will deem it an honour to have adopted them.“ Now-a-days, Indians imitate the western fashions, and they think that they have advanced in life. They think arrogantly that others are backward. From the western system of education, we acquire knowledge of words; not of the soul. Our present day educational system has not been adapted to Indian conditions. It has taken a different direction, and India has not been able to remain India. We do not accept Hindi as our National language; nor do we give any importance to our mother-tongues. What a great loss ! What a loss of the intellectual potentialities of our people! That which appears radiant outwardly appears to us; but it lacks protiens and vitamins. It also lacks taste. This kind of knowledge lacks perfection. It does not encourage the development of the intellect. This incident that took place in Rajasthan illustrates the nature of the present-day educational system. A certain Hindi teacher joined a school. He found that the Hindi students in the school were backward. Their standard was very low. The teacher thought of revising the earlier protion and to proceed to the new lessons on that basis. He decided to find out the level of achievement reached by the students. He asked the students ; "Dear boys ! How many lessons have been covered so far ? "Seven" they said. "I would like to ask you a few them" questions about 51 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #63 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra "Surely, sir, you can" "Has this one-act play been taught to you?" "Yes sir" "Then you tell me who broke the bow of Lord Shiva" One boy stood up fearfully and said, "No, sir! I did not break it" Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir some other students. The teacher said, "What a funny thing! You haven't understood my question" He put the same question to They gave the same answer. The teacher said angrily; "I ask you again. Tell me who broke the bow of Lord Shiva ?" The students gave the same reply. why he was asking that question. All said, "We never broke the bow of Lord falsely accusing us of having broken You will see who broke the bow" The teacher was frightened. "Pratama grase makshi kapat" (A fly in the first morsel). He ran to the Head master and said, "Sir, I asked the students who broke the bow of Lord Shiva ? but they say "Come out. We will tell you who broke it" What shall I do ?" The Headmaster said, "Ah! What dou you say? They are young boys. Someone might have broken it while playing. It does not matter. We will get a new one". 52 They wondered stood up and Shiva; you are it. Come out. This is the present state of our educational system. We need a system of education which can dispel ignorance, arrogance and can make our youngsters cultured and enlightened. Only then can we achieve real pro gress. For Private And Personal Use Only Page #64 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra THE EFFECT OF A DISCOURSE II Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Bhagwan Mahavir expounded his doctrine of selfrealisation in his discourses with love and with the iofty feeling of benevolence. If one leads one's life in accordance with the ideals expounded in those discourses, one's soul also attains development; and to such a man, Moksha is not far away. SELF-REALISATION The Paramatma's discourses are absolutely simple and plain. If those discourses are properly understood and acted upon, our souls attain perfection and we attain Siddhi. The Bhagwan never said: "Felicity is my monopoly. Only I should be happy and others may be unhappy'y The purpose of his discourses was not to establish an' tradition or sect. It did not also have the purpose of increasing the number of his followers. His auspicious aspiration was that every jiva should benefit from the light he had attained by means of long years of painful austerities and spiritual endeavours. He showed the way to attain the status of a Paramatma (the supreme state). He explained the meaning of jiva and jagat (the world). He showed the way to render our life splendid by means of self-realisation. You will natuarally attain a knowledge of the self if For Private And Personal Use Only Page #65 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir the wall of your ego is broken. You should feel, I am nothing; I have nothing". This is the plane of the: Naham (Not I). If we leave the plane of Ahams (egoy and enter the: plane of Naham (Not 1) we will negate the world and rise to the level of the Paramatma. "Oh Paramatma ! May everything prove congenial to me !" If you entertain this lofty thought, then you will realize yourself ; your mental distortion will disappear ; and what is concealed behind the wall of the ego wili not be new to you The egoistic feeling, "I am a mighty scholar. I know everything" is certainly detrimental to your spiritual progress, If food is not properly and fully digested. how cam we get strength and energy? If we merely eat food, we get only mental satisfaction; but a proper digestion of food is essential if it should give us strength. Until to-day, the plane of egoism has been a plane of ostentation and exhibition. Where there is an exhibitions, there is no vision. If you try to show off yourself you can never see yourself. Till now, we have been only showing off ourselves. If you do not reveal your malady how can you get a remedy ? If you make endeavours to attain health, they will help you to attain health, When a person is suffering from high fever, how can he relish delicious food ? If some one insists with affection. "This food is your favourite. It is very delicious. Eat a little", can the sick man eat it and enjoy it? Let us suppose that he eats it inspite of his illness. He will at once vomit it. It cannot be digested. 54 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #66 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir THE CRUELTY OF ANGER. If you give your soul any food which it relishes it will be satisfied; and you will entertain lofty thoughts. That will give you great felicity. There will arise in you a thirst for Moksha. The Kashayas (passions) like anger do not allow the scul to enjoy the taste of such sublime thoughts. Only when its temperature comes to the normat devel, can it taste ard enjoy the sweetness of felicity. If you merely make an attempt to pacify your anger and if you do not taste the sweetness of sublime thoughts, the sway of anger continues; and until you taste the sweetness of elevated thoughts you cannot attain spiritual elevation. What is a Kashay? Kash + Ay : Kash means the samsar; and Ay means tgetting. So, Kashayas bring us samsar When you are under the sway of Kashayas you will not be able to enjoy the sweetness of felicity or serenity. You cannot enjoy any spiritual food. If you consume such food forcibly, you will vomit it, at once. That means you cannot digest it. From time immemorial, the sway of Aham (Ego) has been in existence. The soul carries countless years of the impact of the Ego. On account of its impact, the soul cannot enjoy its food. "Who am I?" If you realise this, your endeavours will become easy. You will attain an inner vision and you will find the path of spiritual progress. AHAM AND NAHAM (EGO AND THE ABSENCE OF EGO) When the sway of Abam (Ego) ends, the sway of Naham, (selflessness) commences and it helps you to realise your self. The inner harmony will sound sweeter to you. Every word uttered by the Paramatma will give your soul felicity 55 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #67 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra and contentment. Hence, hearing a spiritual discourse is considered to be a supreme spiritual endeavour. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir When Aham (Ego) is destroyed the Naham (selflessness) naturally appears. In this state, you do not seek a knowledge of the world; but you seek a knowledge of the inner self. Only an empty vessel can be filled with some liquid. That which is already full cannot receive any more. So empty your soul of egoism. Discard your desire to show off your greatness and begin to see clearly. If you go to a doctor and tell him that you are healthy; that you relish food; that you experience hunger; that you digest food; that you have enough energy in your body and that you can do your work properly, the doctor will say; "'If you are healthy, why have you come to me? Only sick people come to me." If you tell your doctor that your are absolutely healthy, his reply would be, "Then, you may go home." In the same manner, if you claim that you have been carrying out all your spiritual activities regularly; that you have been carrying out such activities as the Samayik, the Pratikraman, Vandan (saluting the Lord), Darshan (seeing the Lord), Pujan (worshipping the Lord) and that you have been doing deeds of charity and kindness why should you go to the Upashray at all? If you thus declare that you are perfect and if you thus speak arrogantly how can you be given any spiritual guidance or inspiration? CONCEAL NOBLE ACTIONS AND REVEAL YOUR SINFUL ACTIONS. It is said in the Pratikraman Sutra; 56 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #68 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra "Condemn your sinful karmas in the presence of the Guru Maharaj with a noble heart. Reveal your sinful Karmas and the Guru Maharaj will suggest a remedy (an atonement). Remember even a sinner can become a Parameshwar. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Till now, you have been showing off your noble actions and concealing your sinful actions. But the right way is, to reveal your sinful karmas and to conceal your noble actions." If you reveal your sins, you will find someone who can guide you to get rid of them. In consequence, you will discard your sins and take the path of spirituality. If you conceal your sins, they will destroy your soul. If you want to conceal anything conceal your noble actions. When a mother suckles her child at her breast, she covers the child with the fringe of her sari. Why? She does so to prevent the possibility of an evil eye being cast upon the child. She does so out of her desire for the welfare of the child. In the same manner, conceal your Punyas so that the evil effect of karmas may not fall upon them. A noble action is like suckling a child. It takes care of the sou! and gives it food. If the effect of evil karmas falls upon your punyas, again the sway of Aham (Ego) begins. The Naham (Selfless) state is essential for spiritual development. In the absence of that quality, the thirst of the soul cannot ba quenched. THE COMPATIBILITY OF ABSORPTION Many great Rishis could not In his Ashram in Pondicherry Sri mendous spiritual attain this great virtue. Aurobindo began a treFor forty endeavour of self-scrutiny. 57 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #69 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir years, he remained deeply absorbed in his endeavours to search for the self, forgetting himself. In order to express those experiences one need not go anywhere and one need not wander anywhere. The soul of a Sadhak becomes firm. There is contentment in spiritual firmness. The race - horses get fodder, but the master gets a huge income. In the same manner, the body runs like a horse while ths senses reap the harvest. but the masteri Therefore, you must get rid of your Abam (Ego). Even after carrying out a search of this kind for forty years, Sri Aurobindo said that his search was incomplete. MANDAN MISHRA'S ABSORPTION Mandan Mishra, after his marriage, did not even see the face of his wife. He had achieved an outstanding mastery over countless Shastras. Sri Shankaracharya has written a cnmmentary called 'Shankara Bhashya'. Mandan Mishra wrote a detailed commentary on it. This commentary contains scholarly comments, expositions, annotations, reflections and deep scrutiny of words. He was deeply absorbed in knowledge. He sat in the same place for thirty five years deeply absorbed in spiritual contemplations. He ate food in the same place; slept there and he spent several years in such absorption. One evening, oil had been exhausted in the lamp. His wife came to pour oil into the lamp. His concentration was shaken. As she was pouring oil into the lamp, he looked up and asked her, "Who are you? How did you come here ?" Mandan Mishra had forgotten everything in his absorption in his task of writing his commentary. The woman said. "I have come to help you in carrying out your task. I am your wife, Bhe mini." 58 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #70 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Mandan Mishra realised that she was his wife. He had grown old. He had forgotten even his wife, absorbed in his task of writing the commentary. He dedicated his work to his wife and called it, "Bhamini Tika" and also wrote in the preface that he could not have completed his work without his wife's co-operation. What an outstanding kind of absorption in the quest for Knowledge ? If one gets absorbed thus in his quest for his soul, he would forget his ship, his family and all his wordly affairs. You have to make this scrutiny. "Who am I?'' and you must find out the answer to this question. This kind of attainment cannot be described in words. It defies definition and baffles analysis. Words are inadequate to describe our voyages through the trackless realms of the spirit. Spiritual experiences cannot be descibed in words They can only be realised through experience. Nabam (Selflessness) gives suprene felicity. One who has realised the self acquires the fitness to know all tnings. If you acquire knowledge on the plane of Aham (Ego) and feel, ''I know everything", that knowledge gets distorted Discard exhibitionism. Begin seeing. Exhibitionism is but egoism and it does not lead to selfrealisation. DISPLAY CAUSES DECLINE Once there was a priest; who also committed a similar blunder. One day the emperor invited him to his palace to recite the prayer. The priest said to his wife, "I am going to recite the prayer in the palace of the emperor. After the prayer, there will be a grand dinner in the palace. Therefore, i will not take anything today, so that I may 59 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #71 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra be hungry at the time of the dinner. "As you like it". The priest went to recited the prayer with the purpose of fervour and of making a great impact and the courtiers. All felt that the priest was reciting the prayer with a genuine devotion. His wife said. the palace. He showing off his on the emperor Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir But the oriest wanted only to make a show of devotion. After the prayer, the dinner began, Various kinds of delicious dishes were placed in silver plates on tables. All sat down to dinner. The guests of the emperor ate only a few morsels and got up. The priest began to think, "Ah F These people have got up; now I too should get up. Otherwise people will think that I lack social etiquette and manners. Who knows that I am terribly hungry ?" Though the priest did not like to get up from his table. he got up. "Why ? said his wife. As soon as he came home, he said to his wife "Please prepare some food at once. I am hungry" Didn't you eat food at the emperor's dinner ?" "Surely ! What shall I say? It was an emperor's dinner. All sat down to eat food. But those big people did not eat much. They made a show of eating and got up. I too had to get up along with them. I have returned home hungry. Prepare some food at once" His wife was an intelligent lady. She said at once, "You go to the palace again. Recite the prayer with heartfelt devotion and come back" The priest said with amazement, "Why?" His wife said, "Because, your first prayer was a mere show. You recited that prayer to impress the emperor and the courtiers and to get some gifts and presentations 60 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #72 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra from them. It was not emperor's dinner did not Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir really addressed to God. The reach you". Similarly, if you carry out spiritual endeavours merely for show, they will not lead you to self-realisation. WHERE THERE IS DHARMA THERE IS TRUTH "What do I do?" This should be kept a secret. When we go to meet a great man or a man of a high status, a friend of his will introduce us to him. In the same manner, Dharma introduces us to the soul; and gives us a knowledge of the soul. Dharma is a great friend of the soul. What is the meaning of Dharma ? Dharma is not merely going to temples or other such places of worship or prayer. Dharma means internal purity and sanctity. When we attain that sanctity, we at once realize the truth. Dharma can attain perfection only after we have attained and amalgamated truth and sanctity' When we once establish truth in our lives, Dharma gives us refuge and takes care of us, Dharma is that which is to be accepted and practised. Dharma protects the soul. It makes the thoughts of the soul firm and pure. Such is Dharma. Dharma saves the soul from wicked thoughts and their influence. Truth is essential to safeguard your purity and sanctity. Haribhadra Suri has said, "1 must maintain contact with truth not with Mahavir or anyone else. I must recieve the truth from the source from which it emerges". This is the elevated view of the grat author of Derma Bindu. Haribhadra Bhatta was a Brahmin by birth and was 61 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #73 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra was named Haribha Ira Bhatta. He the court-priest at Chitor. He wrote the Churni Vritti in whic he says; "I do not have attachment for anyone; nor do I hate anyone. I insist only upon the truth. ! want only the truth from whichever source it may emerge". Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir If you insist upon the truth; and if you honour the truth, then, all the controversies that rage in the name of Dharma will cease. We pollute the purity of Dharma by our impure thoughts. "Dharma is the purity of the inner self." Where there is Dharma, there is truth. The adoration of the truth is the adoration of Dharma. The adoration of the Dharma is the adoration of the Paramatma. Our loftiest objectives can be won only by means of truth. Bhagwan Manavir said, "Oh Gautam ! He who adores the truth attains the supreme Tatva. By that means thepiligrimage of life will end; and the highest objective of life will be realised, In the present situation, it is difficult to live according to the ideals of Dharma. This requires extra efforts. Our objectives cannot be realized without difficulty. Austere endeavours are essential to attain our objectives. How much difficulty do people experience mentally and physically to earn money? When that is so, how can you attain the Paramatma without the sweat of your brow? ATTAINMENT BY MEANS OF ENDEAVOURS. Your endeavours can attain fulfilment only if you renounce everything relating to the world. The nature of the world is that it desires the furits of Dharma but it does not put forth the necessary endeavours. No one desires the fruit 62 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #74 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir of Papa (sin) but all commit sins freely and readily. This is really curious Of course, everyone desires the fruits of Punya but they cannot be attained without efforts. The body is the first means to carry out spiritual austerities. The Sadhanas or the endeavours that we carry out should lead us to self-realization. They should begin in the right manner. The first endeavour should be carried out with the mouth i.e., speech. That situation arises from Naham (Discarding the self). Then arises the question: Koham Who am L? That leads you to the state of Soham. He is myself. (From the self to the supreme state of the Paramatma.) arises only after The question "Koham: Who am I? the wall of Aham (self) is broken. Only when an empty bucket is let into water; can it receive water. Even the bucket has to bend or bow to receive water. Only then can fulness be attained. Politeness brings perfection. If we let down a bucket straight into a well, it will not receive water and will not become full. It is filled with water only when it bows. If you keep the rope straight, your effort will be wasted. When a signal is given, even a running train stops. When the signal remains in the horizontal position, the train will not enter the station. Only when the signal bends does the train move into the station; not otherwise. Only when the signal bows and salutes, does the train enter the station. The signal in life is to bow, before the Guru Maharaj, 63 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #75 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir and enlightened elders ard to the Paramatma. Oniy if you show politeness thus, will Dharma enter your soul; otherwise, it will be helpless. Therefore, politeness is essential. Pride Politeness helps you to attain the Paramatma. keeps you away from the Paramatma. The endeavour for spiritual perfection begins with the mouth (i.e.,) speech. From there the fragnance of Naham and the foul smell of Aham emanate. know this. done the What does the vessel contain ? The spoon helps us to know this. The mouth (speech) similarly reveals what the soul contains. When a delicious dish is prepared, it is the spoon that enables everyone in the family to taste it. You ask it. "You always remain in the dish. Do you enjoy its taste ?" The spoon will reply, "No. It is tasteless. It has no taste." Our condition also is the same. The Dharmasthan is like a dish. The temple is a congenial place for tasting Dharma; but our life is like a spoon. When you go out of a Dharmasthan and if someone asks you: "Did you taste Dharma ?" You will reply: "No. It is tastless, It is wiihout taste." Every day, people go to the Dharmasthan. But do they get any spiritual satisfaction ? If one does not get any satisfaction one should realize that one's endeavours are inadequate. POLITENESS LEADS TO THE PARAMATMA. to see We have two eyes but their function is one things. 64 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #76 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir We have two hands but their function is one: to do work. We have two legs., but their function is one: to walk Look at the politeness of the legs. if one moves forward the other remains behind. The leg remaining behind says, "you go forward. will follow you". On account of this politeness, it can reach its destination. If we too develop sucn politeness we can reach Moksha. What Bhagwan Mahaveer has said is not untrue. He was omniscient and omnipotent. He communicated his messages so that we may attain perfection. He said, 'The tongue is one; but it carries out two functions". Two departments are of the highest importance in the Government. They are: (1) Defence and (2) Finance. The soul has assigned two duties to the tongue. namely : food supply and broadcasting. The tongue is of tremendous capability. namely: food sur FOOD AND CONDUCT. If you eat food which should not be eaten, it will pollute your mind. Thoughts are the seeds which sprout into actions. The paramanus (atoms) of food purify the thoughts. If food contains harmful or impure paramanus, that food will corrupt our thoughts. If you receive an insured letter and if the cheque has disappeared from it, it will be useless. If pure food is not taken Dharma also becomes polluted. The tongue is given two duties: to taste food and to speak. Eating and speaking! How does nature take care of the tongue which carries out such important functions ? The ears are not protected. They are always open. The nose is not protected. It is always open. But the tongue is protected by thirty two teeth. It is dangerous 65 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #77 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir for it to come out. As long as children cannot speak, their mother feeds them and they take in food. They speak whatever they are taught to speak. But danger arises when teeth appear. The first gate of Dharmatatva is the mouth. It begins with the tongue and ends with self-realisation. The tongue gathers Karma by eating what should not be eaten, By speaking what should not be spoken, it creates flames which burn us. First, we should exercise a restraint on our tongue; i. e., on our speech. THE PURITY OF FOOD. Impure food inspires ignoble thoughts and ignoble thoughts impel ignoble conduct. First of all, if there is purity in our food, our thoughts will attain sanctity. Even Vedas cannot sanctify a man who is devoid of noble conduct and who does not carry out spiritual austerities. You may carry out the Pratikraman; you may carry out the Samayik; you may take vows; you may go to the temple but all these will be futile if your food is not pure. No austerity can bear an auspicious fruit if your food is impure. If there is purity in your food there will be purity in your thoughts. As is the food; so is your mood. A vast majority of people eat such food as would help doctors. THE PURUTY OF SPEECH The great Acharyas have explained how we should speak. If your speech is pure, that will help you to carry out spiritual austerities; otherwise, distortions will appear. The distortions of the senses arise from the distortions of the mind and will increase as your mental distortions increase. PROFIT AND LOSS. Neither profit; nor loss. 66 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #78 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir A gentleman went one day to Chaupati to carry out his business. He began to search for a friend of his. The two met and decided to carry out business in cool drinks. The gentleman said to his friend. "I will bring cool drinks; you bring ice and bottles. We shall sell at the rate of five annas per cup. Of this, we shall put aside three annas towards expenses. Of the two annas profit we shall go halves and take one anna each. We shall each get 50% profit. "But owing to the emergence of the Labhantaray Karma, they could not get any profit. The effect of their sinful karma was such that no one came to buy cool drinks from them. Now, it was afternoon; and the gentleman began to feel very thirsty, He said to his friend, "May | drink a glass of this." The friend said, "'This is business; you cannot drink it free.', The gentleman said, “I have five annas with me." He paid five annas; and drank a glass of the cool drink. His thirst was satisfied. Sometime later, his friend felt thirsty; and said that he wanted a drink. The gentleman said, "Do as I did. This is business, you see !" He did so. Thus, they continued drinking upto the evening. The five annas kept moving from one to the other. By the evening, the entire quantity was exhausted. In the evening when the gentleman returned home, his mother asked him : "How did your business go on?" "It went on very well." "Then you must have got a large profit.,' "I got no profit." He narrated to her all that had happened. The mother sank to the ground in despair. She was silent. Our endeavours also are of the same kind. Prayer Pratikraman, Samayik, worship, seeing the lord and glo 67 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #79 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir are all futile if they do not bring any spiritual rifying him benefit. The endeavours that we carry out should bring fellicity to our souls ; ecstasy to the intellest and satisfaction to the mind. If austerities can bring firmness u the soul, they can take us to Meksha and that will bring perfection to life. First, purify your life. Then you try to realise yourself. Self-realisation is the aim of all austerities. You must attain the fitness to reach that state. If you want to meet a Chief Minister how difficult it is! When that is so, it requires a lot of endeavours to attain that supreme power. You require the recommendation of Sadhus and saints to meet the Paramatma. NO PROFIT WITHOUT AN AIM : Endeavours are essential to proceed on the path of Sadhana. If one wants to go to Bombay one should proceed in the proper direction and Bombay should be the aim of your journey. Moksha is the aim of the pilgrimage of life. Spiritual austerities help us to proceed towards it. Once Dronacharya gave a test to the Kauravas and the Pandavas. He said, "Look, my dear pupils ! To-day, I will test your skill in taking an aim. There is a tree before you and a dove made of wheat flour is on it. You must aim at its right eye". Everyone of the Kauravas and the Pandavas was called. Dronacharya put the same question to everyone. First the Kauravas came one by one. Each one said, "'? see the tree. see the bird". After hearing the reply, he sent away each one. All the Kauravas failed to give the right answer. Then the 68 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #80 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Pandavas were invited one by one Four of them failed to give the right answer. At last, Arjuna was called. He was thoroughly cautious. Dronacharya said to him, "My dearest pupil, Arjuna ! What do you see there ?" Arjuna replied, "I see nothing except the right eye of the bird on the tree". Dronacharya said, "Then aim your arrow at it. You have passed my test". Arjuna passed the test because he aimed at the right object. The others saw the sky or the tree or the leaves or the fruits and other such things. But Arjuna saw nothing except the right eye of the bird. If you acquire the right aim you will also attain success with the blessings of the Guru Maharaj. I too have been placing before you every day one aim namely Moksha. I have also explained to you how you should destroy your karmas. It would be good, if you also take my test. Now it is 10-05. We have to end our discourse. You tell me the truth. What is your aim ? Do you see it? Supposing 1 ask you, "What do you see before you ?" You reply, ''We see our shops, our houses and our cars and other possessions''. When you see all those things how can you see your real aim namely, Moksha ? Realise your aim by means of endeavours, Our spiritual endeavours in this life begin with the mouth (speech). How does that Sadhana attain fulfilment? When the activities of your life become purified, your determination also becomes firm and elevated. If there is any distortion in your activities, there will be a consequent distortion in your thoughts also. When that is so, how can you renounce the world and become a Vitrag ? 69 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #81 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir SELF-RESTRAINT What is done in the war? What is war-policy ? Bombs, aeroplanes, aerodromes and all such things are got ready. Why do people make such preparations ? They make such preparations because they have to get food-supply for soldiers ; they have to carry soldiers and ammunition to the war-front and because they have to bomb the enemy areas. Can soldiers fight without food and weapons ? How should you fight against your karmas ? Cut off all supplies to them. Otherwise, you will not achieve success. You have to cut off all "supplies" to your five senses because they are your enemies. If you do so the samsar becomes a heaven. If you conquer your senses you will attain success. This requires an absolute dedication to truth. You must destroy Aham (Ego) and reach the phase of Naham (Selflessness), and then, the devil in your mind disappears. That serenity helps you to realise the soul. The mind becomes the knower and the seer like a mirror. The nature of a mirror is to receive the image of any object in front of it. Your heart must be like e mirror. The nature of the mind is to see and to know. The mirror knows everyone who stands before it but it does not receive anyone into itself. Your mind also should see everyone but should not take in anyone because if your mind takes in anyone it becomes attached to him and there will be agitation. Therefore, keep your mind firm and non-attached. How can you control your mind and purify it? This ran be achieved by discretion in speech and restraint in cespect of food. 70 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #82 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir III Lord Jineshwar, the supreme benefactor, with his heart abounding in benevolence, expounded his theories in his state of supreme spiritual enlightenment to awaken into spiritual awareness the souls that are steeped in a stupor of worldliness. He delivered his sermons so that the souls steeped in infatuation and ignorance might attain enlightenment; so that the poems of their lives might become sacred granthas, so that the stories of their lives might become magnificent histories: so that their barren lives might become fertile and flowering; so that their enlightenment might give light and inspiration to others; and so that their lives might become radiant lights and keep emitting brightness for ever. The souls that are awakened by discourses lament over their present condition in Samsar. They will develop an attitude of contempt for the worldly life. The present-day world gives no satisfaction to the mind and heart. It is not life but a world where the flames of passion keep burning. Those flames burn all and destroy all. THE SWEETNESS OF LIFE Life is like a stringed musical instrument. It is like a Tambura. It is an extraordinary means to practise music and singing. It has the three strings from the harmony of which, sweet melodies emerge. In the same manner, life also has three strings, namely Darshan (faith) Joan (Knowledge) and Charitra (conduct) and from their harmony sweet music arises and gives us supreme delight. We can achieve perfection and sanctity in our life by practising that music and from the tunes of faith, life becomes beautiful, sweet and worthy; and will, in course of time attain Moksha. For Private And Personal Use Only Page #83 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Bhagwan Mahavir's ideals manifest themselves in your iives and will provide a !ofty inspiration to you. It will be a code of conduct and a hymn of inspiration to you. It will be a power-house from which all of you can get light. Because it gives light, it will be useful to all. Its lofty messages become your ideals to elevate you to higher levels of existence. THE IDEAL WAY OF LIFE. The reformation of individuals leads to the reformation of the society. Your families become reformed; the society becomes reformed; and even nations become reformed. This process will transform our country into the Ramarajya or the ideal state. Because the paramanus (atoms) of the world become transformed and reformed, the whole world becomes a holy place. The paramanus in the Sadhakas ! also become recharged. That is why life is said to be a pilgrimage. THE PILGRIMAGE. The pilgrim-centres have been hallowed by the touch of the Paramanus of many men who are incarnations. That touch awakens the dormant soul. Its contemplations become elevated, and will be strengthened by noble thoughts. The whole world becomes blessed and hallowed by the influence of those Paramanus. DISINTERESTEDNESS : Adya Shankaracharya once happened to be wandering from place to place preaching his doctrines. He began to think of establishing an ashram where he could carry out his spiritual endeavours. He began to look for a suitable place. He was a supreme Sadhak; he was the Yuga Purush, the greatest man of his age. He had acquired an absolute mastery over the Vedas and he was totally nonattached. He always proceeded on the path of spiritual endeavours. He was totally detached from Samsar. Though 72 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #84 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir he remained in the Samsar, he was not attached to it. He remained totally detached from it. When we put our hand in water, it becomes wet : but it we smear oil to our hand; and put it in water, it will not become wet. It is detached from water. It will not get wet even to the least extent. The sphere of spirituality is similar to that. If a Sadhak remains in the midst of Samsar it will not affect him because he is smeared with the oil of detachment and renunciation. He renounces sensual cravings and the attractions of the five senses; so he becomes detached from sensual cravings. Hence, Dharma is like a divine fire. It destroys sins and purifies the soul. Since a Sadhaka is smeared with Vairagya or the spirit of detachment he will not be touched by Samsar though he may remain in it. All his sensual cravings and distortions would have disappeared. FIRMNESS : How does milk become curds ? Milk becomes curds because firmness appears in it. If we churn curds, we get butter, This is the result of firmness. The liquidity of milk assumes solidity in curds; and then if we churn curds. we get butter. This is perfection. If we put butter into butter-milk it will not sink into it; on the other hand, it ill keep floating. It remains detached. in the same manner. when a person attains mental firmness by means of spiritual endeavours the Tatva or perfection appears in the soul; and then he will remain in a state of firmness and equanimity even if there appear cyclones and tempests in his life. By means of spiritual endeavours the butter of Tatva results. After this state is reached, even if he remains 73 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #85 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra in the samsar, he will be detached, and into samsar. With the purpose of carrying out such endeavours; and of attaining the butter of Tatva or enlightenment, Adya Shankaracharya decided to establish an Ashram and began searching for a suitable place. He happened to be travelling in the south. At a place, he witnessed an astonishing event. He decided to establish an ashram there. He became deeply overwhelmed with a mysterious kind of delight. He thought, "I have created Shastras; and I have solved all metaphysical problems; but this delight I am experiencing is unprecedented". Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir THE INCISIVENESS OF THOUGHT: Shankaracharya went to the river to take a bath. It was morning. A Harijan was sweeping the road. While he was returning from the river having taken a bath, by chance, the Harijan happened to touch him; and he became angry : He said: "Are you blind? Do you know who I am? I have purified myself by bathing in the river; and, I have become polluted by your touch!" will not sink At that time, the Harijan gave him an explanation. Harijan folded his hands; and said: "Kindly excuse sir. I am sorry. I too have to take a bath now." " Hearing this, Shankaracharya fell into deep thoughtfulness. He began to wonder why the man had to take a bath. He said, "Why do you say so? Why do you want to take a bath now ?" 74 The Harijan replied: "Bhagwan! To-day I have been polluted by the touch of an impure man. So, I have to take a bath. Though by profession, the Harijan was a sweeper, he was a saint at heart. He had attained enlightenment. He had lofty ideals in his life. For Private And Personal Use Only The me, Page #86 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir THE GANGA OF PACIFICATION : There is the need for pacification on the plane of spiri tual endeavours. There can be no mental firmness or equani - mity on the plane of Sadhana or spiritual endeavours. In the absence of pacification, there can be no mental firmness, and in the absence of mental firmness there can be no realisation of truth. The Harijan said, "Bhagwan ! Though you are a great man, you have not conquered your anger. Anger is an evil passion; and it has polluted me. So, I have to take a bath." Hearing this, Shankaracharya felt deeply repentant. He thanked the Harijan and said, "You have awakened me to-day. Today, I have really attained sainthood. 1 acted wrongly in getting angry with you; A saint should not act thus." Beneficial ideas can be learnt even from youngsters. The man who admits his mistakes becomes eager to scrutinise them. He will carry out his scrutiny with spiritual awareness. AN ASTONISHING MYSTERY: Thus, during his wanderings in the south, Shankaracharya established his ashram at a place. He saw an astonishing event there. He saw a cobra giving protection with its hood from sunshine to a wounded frog. There, the sunshine was very scorching. The frog which was wounded was lying on the scorching sand, because it had lost its legs by chance. And we know a frog is a tender creature that lives in water. It was experiencing great agony and agitation. A cobra was giving it shelter from the sun with its hood spread out. Shankaracharya was amazed to see a cobra giving protection to a frog. So he asked the Rishis 75 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #87 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir and munis of the area to explain the mystery behind this astonishig event. It was an astonishing event because normally a cobra eats a frog but here it was giving protection to a frog. THE EFFECT OF THE PARAMANUS (ATOMS) : The munis and the rishis said, "The Paramanus (Atoms) of this area are so efficacious that even violent beings become non-violent here. Once, a great sage by name Sringeri carried out Tapas here for many years. He was a sage of astounding spiritual excellence and achievements. On account of the impact of his personality tiis land has become sanctified. Any creature that happens to enter this area awakens from its state of infatuation and spiritual stupor and becomes ennobled. His heart grows banevolent. His mind becomes elevated and his condcut becomes exalted." On hearing this, Shankaracharya decided to establish his math there. He established his math there because he found that it was a holy area. SPIRITUAL AWAKENING: On account of the impact of the Paramanus of sublime thoughts, our endeavours awaken our souls into awareness. The soul that is awakened thus accepts or realises the truth, Truth is the way by which we can enter the soul. "Truth gives a direction" The Untruth leads us astray and keeps us wandering aimlessly". When we attain satisfaction, our intellectual eagerness ends. When we are in that state of mental satisfaction and peace, we become fearless and we become deeply absorbed in our contemplations. When once this state is reached, the desire to look at the Samsar comes to an end. 76 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #88 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Try to understand yourself and see what you should write in the book of your life. Life is a chapter; life is a grantha. What has been written in it? If you try to understand it, you will find that faults are recorded in it. If there are faults on the paper, the consequences also will be harmful. Until now life has not been scrutinised and evaluated. You have not understood your life because you have not attained mental firmness. THE KNOWLEDGE OF THE DIFFERENCE. We attiin perfection only when we attainmental firmness or equanimity, Until now, you have been wandering aimlessly in this Samsar thinking of such transient things as property, position, shops and houses and you have not realised that the body and the soul are different from each other. Until you understand this difference between the body and the soul, you will not realise the truth and without a knowledge of the truth there can be no selfrealisation. Bheda Vijnan (the knowledge that the soul and the body are different from each other) is the foundation of all metaphysical doctrines. The coconut symbolises this Bheda Vijnan. The coconut contains within itself the kernel. The outer shell and fibrous cover are symbolic of the body, whereas the kernel symbolises the soul, while the water in it symbolises attachment. When the water dries up the internal kernel becomes perfect and can be easily separated from the shell and the tangles of coir which surround it. But you are attached to the external objects deeming them real. !f you break the coconut after the water dries up in it you will get dry, ripe, round, tasty, kernel. 77 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #89 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra SELF-REALISATION If you acquire a knowledge of this difference your attachments will end and your inner soul will assert itself. Such is the nature of the soul. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir As long as you are in the samsar, you feel, "This family is mine; this shop is mine; this home is mine". When the body is injured the soul gets affected but if you try to realise the soul on the basis of Bheda Vijnan, you realise that the contact between the body and the soul is unreal. If you do not realise this truth you will be deceiving yourself. But your soul will not be affected. It is said in the Bhagavad Gita, "The soul is immortal. It is spotless and pure. It is formless. It is permanent. It cannot be cut into pieces. It cannot be burnt; nor can it perish". It Mahavir Bhagwan has said that the soul embodies knowledge, faith and character (Jnan, Darshan, and Charitra). The soul has no relationship with any external object. has no relationship with the body also. This is Bheda Vijnan or the knowledge that the body and the soul are different from each other. THE STATE OF IGNORANCE: In the state of ignorance, a person thinks that others and other objects belong to him. He does not realize himself. He has attachments and hatred. The flames of hatred burn his life. You must take a stand on the plane of spirituality and ask yourself; "Who am I?" Why should you try to evaluate the world? One may evaluate and scrutinise all the objects of the world; but one may not evaluate and scrutinise oneself. A person went to Bombay from his native place; and 78 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #90 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra earned lakhs of rupees. By the grace of the Paramatma he was blessed with a family, a bungalow and health. He secured all kinds of worldly prosperity. But karmas came in the way. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir He thought egoistically, "I have achieved all this. 1 had nothing in the beginning. All this is the result of my intelligence." If a person thinks arrogantly thus, he may lose everything. In this infatuation of his earthly splendour, he forgets the Paramatma and his soul. Karmas may begin to exercise their sway over his life. They may cause some disease in him. This happened in the case of that merchant, He began to suffer from some disease which caused great pain in the brain. He consulted doctors. They said, "You have a brain-tumour. It is very dangerous. Because of the tumour blood-circulation will be impeded. Now an operation has to be carried out. Even the operation may not be successful. Moreover, it cannot be carried out here. You have to go abroad. You may consult the doctors there and get the operation carried out by them."' The doctors gave such a death-certificate. Once, a noble man happened to be living in a thatched cottage. One day accidentally, it caught fire and began burning. The neighbours came to put out the fire. They were trying to put out the fire because they feared that the fire might spread to their houses also. "By saving others from danger, we save ourselves from danger." Saving the souls of others from decline and ruin is to save our own souls from ruin. When the noble man was informed that his cottage was on fire, he said, "No. Nothing of mine is being burnt. My soul is quite safe, That is my real possession. What does it matter if such external objects are burnt ? If our inner self is safe, everything is safe." He continued to be in the house. 79 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #91 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir The people took out all that they could, from the burning house. They put all those things in a heap, outside. Then someone said, "But where is the owner of these things ?" Then they realised that the owner had been burnt; and had did. In their confusion, they had forgotten the owner of the house. They had carried the articles in the house to a place of safety. But they had neglected the owner. Our condition also is the same. We safeguard our external possessions. We take care of our houses, property and wealth; but we neglect our souls. We do not try to save our souls from ruin; but we take care of our worldly possessions. This is the state of ignorance in which we find ourselves. That merchant of Bombay thought, "I must first take care of my body. If I am alive I can earn money by means of my intelligence." Undoubtedly the body is more valuable than money. He decided to spend all his money to save his life. He went to England : and underwent an operation. The operation was successful. He returned to Bombay hale and hearty. Many years later, the last day of his life arrived. THE SOUL IS PRECIOUS : Now you agree that the body is more valuable than money. But if the soul leaves the body, nobody would touch the dead body. Nobody would remain by the side of the dead body. The members of your family would say: "Take it away and bury it (or burn it)". If there are any valuables on the body the members of your family would steal them. Those for whose sake you sacrifice everything, desert you. 80 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #92 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir The body is more valuable than money ; but the soul is more vaiuable than the body The soul is immortal. When that is so, what do you do for the soul during the twenty four hours of the day? You spend all the twenty four hours of the day taking care of the things that are not permanent. You are attached to the worldly objects which you have got by virtue of your punya, or good fortune. You are attached to external objects ATTACHMENT AND ILLUSION : You do not spend even a single hour on that thing that really belongs to you; and which is permanent and imperishable, Even if you attain the Dharmadasha, your soul does not experience delight because the soul carries with it the impact of the karmas of all the lives from time immemorial ; and you have made no effort to produce on your soul new and auspicious impacts. When you are asked to make some sacrifices or to do a deed of benevolence, your mind is agitated and you feel greatly unhappy. Your mind grows indifferent when you are asked to make some sacrifice. If there is any opportunity of acquiring wealth, your face blcoms into bliss; and when you are asked to do a deed of charity or magnanimity, your face grows bleak and blighted as if you have drunk casior oil. If you attain spiritual realisation, you will use external objects for the benefit of others and you will attain spiritual elevation. Therefore, it is not proper to have attachment for external objects, and to think of your worldly prosperity. A SECRET GIFT ; If you are asked to do a deed of benevolence, you would speak of the slump in prices and you would plead 81 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #93 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir many other pretexts. But if you have to go to a sales-tax officer or an income-tax officer or to the police-station; or if a wrong and deceptive entry is noticed in your accounts by the officer concerned, you will place a paper weight upon the accounts; otherwise, they will fly away Forgive and forget. This is a secret gift. If you are asked to give some gift to the Arihant Paramatma you will start pleading pretexts. When you realise your soul; love manifests itself and you will understand your true self and its state. THE KNOWLEDGE OF THE SOUL If you once reach the state of spiritual realisation, no one need prevail upon you to do deeds of benevolence. The desire to help others arises naturally in you. After that, you need not wander in the darkness of ignorance. A divine radiance will guide you on your way. You will attain self-realisation by means of spiritual studies and the study of Dharma granthas; and they will lead you on the royal road to salvation. There are many ways by which one can reach the Paramatma. There are various means to attain a knowledge of the path to Moksha. Hence, when once you attain that knowledge, you will reach perfection. Once, a young lion lost its way in the forest. It fell into the company of jackals. On account of the impact of the company of jackals, it also acquired their qualities. Even in its early age, the qualities of a lion disappeared in it. It forgot its own nature. In course of time, it grew up. One day, a lion came there in search of prey and it 82 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #94 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir began roaring violently. HOLD ON TO THE CAUSE. A lion never hunts for prey without roaring. The Paramatma's call reverberates in the soul. The lion clings to the cause ; not to the effect. For instance, if we pelt a stone at a dog, it catches at the stone and bites it, ignoring us who pelted the stone. But a lion, when it is shot, does not mind the bullet; it pounces upon the hunter who shot it. A worshipper of Mahaveer never clings to the effect; he would cling to the cause. He would ask: "'From where did all these things appear? Sometimes, the effects resulting from even ignorance can end karmas. He thinks of the cause; not the effect. The lion had in it cowardice resulting from years of its association with jackals. It had lost its courage and ferocity. So, when the jackals ran away on hearing the roar of the lion, the young lion also began running in fear. The lion caught it; and asked it: "How did you become so cowardly?"" WHERE THERE IS KNOWLEDGE, THERE IS PERFECTION : The young lion had no knowledge of itself. On account of its belief that it was a jackal, it became cowardly. It had no knowledge of itself. It believed that it belonged to a different species. The lion caught it; and took it to a lake; and told it to look at its own reflection in the water. "You see your face and my face in the water. There is no difference between us. We are lions'. The young lion understood what it was : and it achieved perfection. The lion said, "Now, you roar. Other creatures will run away from you." Steeped in Samsar. we have become jackals. But Mahaveer, Shri Ram and Lord Krishna dwell in you too. 83 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #95 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir If you roar, your passions like anger, will run away from you. If you look into the mirror of shastras, you will realise that there is no essential difference between you and Mahaveer. you. If you looking I am roaring out only to mike you realise yourselves. This is a supreme truth. The moment you realise yourself, you will attai firmness of mind. Therefore, in order to see yourself, you must carry out spiritual contemplations. By this means, you can rid your soul of its Kashayas ; and you will commenc: carrying out spiritual austerities; and all your Kashayas will be burnt to ashes. FIRE AND TAPAS : Once we were going on our Vihar (travelling on foot); and on the way, I happened to see a heart-rending spectacle. At that time, we happened to be staying at place called Manor Gav. Nearby some tribal people were living in their cottages. On that night, a heavy rain had fallen there. Everywhere there was water. The cottages of the tribals had been flooded with water. A poor, old woman wanted to cook food. She cut fire-wood and put it in the owen. She had to cook food for her hungry children. She put some kerosene on the fire-wood and lighted it. But since the fire-wood was wet, it did not burn. Her face grew red with blowing air into the owen. She lost all hopes of cooking food. She went to some neighbours and brought dry fire-wood. It burnt well ; and she cooked food. My task also is similar to that. Your souls are the vessels ; your spiritual perfection is the food I have to prepare. I have come here to prepare that food. With the fire of my discourses, I have to burn your Kashyas ; but your souls are fully drenched in Kashayas. Hence, they cannot be made to catch the fire of spirituality easily. 84 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #96 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra DHARMA IS A FRIEND : Therefore, burn all your Kashayas and sins with the fire of Tapas. Dharma is a friend of the soul. By understanding Dharma you will attain a knowledge of the soul. Dharma enables us to attain a complete knowledge of the soul. Therefore, you must carry out endeavours to attain the Atmatatwa (spiritual realisation) by means of the Dharmatatva. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir How is Dharma created? How and from where does it originate? Dharma orginates from Truth; and Truth safeguards Dharma. COMPASSION AND SPIRITUAL PROGRESS : How can you realise the sublim virtues of the sou without Dharma ? The utterances of great men abound in compassion. Bhagwan Mahaveer has said with abounding benevolence : "Compassion gives life. May all jivas attain spiritual welfare; May none experience anguish at any time". This is Mahaveer's ideal. "May all jivas get rid of their sins. May all jivas be liberated from their anguish". Such was his compassion. His wish was; "What 1 have attained, all should attain". After he became an omniscient there was no need for him to deliver discourses. But he communicated his messages out of his compassion for others; and out of his desire that all jivas should attain spiritual welfare. He had no need to attain fame in this world. He delivered his sermons to inspire us to become Paramatmas. If we practise those sublime ideals of the 85 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #97 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Paramatma our life will become a banyan tree of boundless compassion and benevolence. We should practise those ideals, Let your actions be experiments in truth. THE PURITY OF SPEECH : We have two ears ; two eyes; two nostrils; two legs and two hands but each pair carries out only one functior The tongue is one ; but performs two functions. We can end the samsar or prolong it by means of our tongue (speech). You must think deeply about what you say. You should think : "There should be no harm done to anyone by my speech. I should not antagonize anyone. No conflicts should arise on account of my utterances. My utterances should not bring about impediments on the path of my spiritual endeavours". You must think thus because all these things are related to your speech. FOOD AND THOUGHT : Speech oiginates from the Paramacus of thoughts and ideas. As is the food; so is the thought. As is the thought ; so is the mood. Whether your thoughts end the samsar or prolong it depends on your wisdom and intelligence. Once when the soul was in a state of infatuation, there arose a quarrel among the various organs of the body. The tongue said, “Remember. I am all inportant !" The teeth said, "Ah ! We have control over you !" The tongue said, "Remember ! Though you are my 86 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #98 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir neighbours, you are antagonising me as if I am your enemy. If I utter a few cffensive words all the thirty two of you will get out of your places". The teeth began to fear such a possibility. They work hard and collect food for the body whereas what is liked by the tongue is harmful to the bc dy. Attachment for such external things brings about spiritual ruin. PROFIT FROM RESTRAINT : If you misuse your tongue (speech) you will have to taste bitter fruits in your next life. Therefore, use your tongue (speech) for noble purposes. Keep a restraint on your words. That restraint will be a blessing 10 you in your life and it will organise your life excellently. It will make your life pleasant, fragnant and perfect. Dharma gives protection to your life It gives you proper guidance. Dharma does not lie in words ; it lives in actions. The soul cannot bear with a separation from Dharma. The scul experiences grief when it is caught in the midst of the sound and fury of Ilfe. No one seems to have time to hear its lamentations. Therefore, people take interest in samsar and remain in a state of ignorance, without endeavouring to look into themselves. THE SOUL AND THE BODY. What you acquire you must discard ; the soul and the What is the relationship between body? Look at the relationship between ink and the pen. 87 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #99 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Letters are written with a pen and the pen is helped by the ink. The string tied to the pen is a symbol of determination. The pen desires that nothing unpleasant or faulty should be written with it. If such a thing happens the pen raises an objection. Ink and pen bestow a great benefaction upon the world. Ink dedicates itself to the world. It dries up and the pen is dedicated to the world by being worn out in the service. The pen cannot function in the absence of ink. It can carry out the task of writing, only when there is a union with ink. Separated from ink, the pen stops functioning. In the same manner, if the pen is broken, ink by itself cannot do anything. There is dust. It can be thrown upon ink. Dust here symbolises defiance. If its friend is thus kept away, the pen itself cannot do anything. Separation is inimical to existence. samsar inspires the lofty feeling of Every event in renunciation. In the eyes of the Vitrag, samsar abounds in objects that inspire renunciation. THE GREATNESS OF SILENCE : Speech is as precious as gems. If any consumer comes to you, give him two or three such gems. His soul will be supremely satisfied. If, after you gain his love, he goes away, you must shut the doors of your treasury. That means you must resume silence. Silence is a spiritual austerity. Speech can bring loss. It is said, "Silence Steeps the intellect into a spiritual 88 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #100 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir causes trance". And it is said that speaking too much mental vacillation and changefulness. The loss of words tantamounts to a loss of energy. This is true even from the scientific point of view. Unnecessary talk is physically harmful. One word can bring about a total ruin of the body. The energy that you may gain by drinking a litre of pure milk will be lost by the utterance of a single, harmful word. With the help of Sadhus we can regain spiritual health. and retain The lesser the speech, the loftier the thought. Silence inspires self-scrutiny and spiritual introspection. SWEET WORDS : Silence is a spiritual endeavour. In the Jain darshan eight qualities are attributed to speech. or Brevity (spea The first quality is Stokam or Alpam king briefly to the purpose). The second quality is Madhuram or sweetness (speaking in a pleasant and agreeable manner). If you give a cup of tea to a friend without adding sugar to it, he will not be able to enjoy it. Tea becomes sweet if sugar is added to it. If you speak without sense and discretion, your speech may sound harsh. Therefore, make your speech sweet to the listeners. The words of saintly men arise from their internal awareness. How impressive and inspring were the uttera 89 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #101 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra When Swami roaring out. His practised what he nces of Shri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, the great saint of Dakshnineswar ! Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Vivekananda spoke, it was like a lion speeches are SO inspiring because he preached. WHERE THERE IS ENDEAVOUR THERE IS ATTAINMENT: A certain barrister came to have a darshan of Shri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa at Belur math. He was greatly delighted to have met Shri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa. The Swamiji had some agitation in his mind. He was worried. He was suffering from some ailment. The barrister said to him, "I will get you treated by the best doctors if you agree to it". The Swamiji was silent. DHARMA BINDU Again he said, "What is the use of your yoga? You can cure yourself by your yoga. An ailment can be cured even by the blessings of a noble man. And you possess extraordinary yogic powers, Why do not you cure yourself by means of your yogic powers ?'' The Swami smiled and said, "Do you think that I am an ignorant man? How foolishly you are talking ! Who would pour ghee into ashes ? Shall I waste my yogic powers to cure my physical ailment ? I have carried out my spiritual endeavours for the sake of my eternal soul; not for the sake of this body". "The aim of the inner soul is to attain perfection. Whatever I have been doing, I have been doing it for my soul; not for the body or my worldly life. I have been carrying out my spiritual endeavours for my soul. is for discarding attachments". Dharma 90 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #102 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Acharya Shri Haribhadra soori, the ocean of compassion has given an easy explanation of Dharma in his great work Dharma Bindu. He has written many other great granthas like Shad darshan, Yogasamuchchaya and Yogadrishti. He was a Brahmin. He was a court-priest ; and he became a great Jain acharya. What is the meaning of Dharma Bindu ? Dharma is a vast ocean. Taking a bindu or a drop from it, he wrote this grantha for the spiritual welfare of the world. If a man keeps remembering Dharma, it will remain in his mind. Do not be indifferent to matters relating to Dharma. Let Dharma show itself in your activities and let it live in your actions. In order to impress these ideas on people, the great Acharya composed the Dharma Bindu. For Private And Personal Use Only Page #103 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir SELF-SURRENDER IV The supreme benefactor, Arihant Paramatma, out of his aspiration for the spiritual elevation of the world, bestowed upon the world the light he had attained from his sublime spiritual contemplations- "Oh you soul; Give up thinking of the external world and its objects, Attain inner awakening. Endeavour to attain inner felicity, beauty and perfection. The objects that you see outside are not yours. They do not accompany you to the next world." Borrowed things do not remain with us long Borrowed objects cannot help us to achieve elevation. If you get worldly prosperity from your punya karmas, how can it be firm and lasting? Perfection lies in our own sanctity. External achievements bring only agitations. If you use your energy for the wrong purpose, it causes a loss of your spiritual virtues. THIRST: So far no one has been able to attain a total fulfilment of his desires. The thirst of desires is boundless, and endless like the oceans or the sky. It is limitless. People do not feel satisfied with what they have got. On account of this tendency, they are devoid of internal spiritual awareness. The attachment for external world brings only ruin. Countless emperors, heroes and warriors have lived and died but no one's desires were fulfilled. For Private And Personal Use Only Page #104 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Aristotle, the great Greek philosopher was Alexander's teacher. Before setting off on his military campaigns to conquer the world, Alexander went to his teacher to seek his blessings. Aristotle said, "Which country will you conquer first ?" Alexander replied, ''I will conquer Central Asia first" Aristotle said, "After that ?" Alexander said, "India" Think of the way in which the human mind works. There is no limit to man's mental flights. There is no perfection in them. They do not bring any spiritual satisfaction. "After that which country will you Aristotle said, conquer ?" Alexander replied, "I will conquer East Africa". Aristotle said, "After that ?" Alexander replied, "I will invade Europe". Aristotle said, "What is your next plan ?" Alexander replied, "I will conquer the whole world" Aristotle said, "Then what will you do?" Alexander replied, "Afterwards, I will take rest in my capital because I will have been tired of fighting". Aristotle said, "I do not want to bestow my blessings upon a mad fellow. You are nothing short of a mad man. Do you think you can get mental peace by causing agitation and agony to countless people? I cannot give my blessings to a man who wants to cause violence and agitation to others". 93 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #105 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir How can we reap the fruits of peace by sowing the seeds ot agitation and violence ? A PROBLEM AND A SOLUTION : The solution to a problem can be normally found in the same situation from where the problem arises. We go out in search of peace while peace lies latent in our hearts. Once, a certain gentleman fell ill. He found it difficult to breathe. He experienced great difficulty in moving about. A mysterious kind of darkness clouded his eyes. When he was given a medical check - up, no cause could be discovered for his malady and it could not be cured. He was greatly worried. The doctor gave his suggestion, "You must go to London for treatment. There your malady will be cured". The gentleman accordingly went to London. There, he consulted the best doctors. He said, "I am greatly worried. Kindly save me from this dreadful disease''. An experienced specialist examined him. He did not seem to be suffering from any disease. The doctor said to the gentleman, "Owing to some disturbance or hurt in the eyes you are experiencing pain and you feel that a cloud of darkness is covering your eyes. Therefore, please consult an eye-specialist". Accordingly, the gentleman consulted an eye-specialist. He examined his eyes and declared that there was no defect or disease in his eyes. The gentleman again went to the expert whom he had already consulted. Then, the physician said that he might be suffering from a dental disease called pyorrhea and that he must consulta dentist. When he consulted a dentist, he examined him and 94 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #106 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir said, "I see no disease in your teeth; yet I will remove these teeth and fit a new set of teeth". The gentleman agreed to this. The dentist removed his teeth and fitted a new set of artificial teeth but his disease continued as ever. When again he was examined it was found that everything was normal with him. The doctor said, "This is a terrible disease. It must be a new disease unknown to the medical world. It is a dreadful disease. There is no remedy to it. Therefore, you return home and spend your last days with your wife and children at your home". Thus obtaining a "death-certificate" from the doctors, the gentleman returned home. The gentleman thought, "Anyway I have to die. Let me die peacefully and happily'. "Take mea He sent for his tailor and said to him, surements and stitch a costly suit for me". The tailor took measurements. The measurments had increased compared to the earlier ones. Now, his collar measured 14 inches while it formerly measured 12 inches. The gentleman asked him to stitch his collar according to his earlier measurements. Then, the tailor said, "If I stitch your shirt and coat according to your earlier measurments you will not be able to breathe properly". The gentleman at once exclaimed ; "I see! While a real doctor is at home I went abroad and spent a lot of money unnecessarily and lost my teeth into the bargain". The gentleman's disease was at last cured. He had got his collar stitched thus to save money and he had paid heavily for his miserliness. In the same manner, you go to your shops every day and earn money but do you get mental peace from it. By your good fortune you might have got many worldly possessions and worldly 95 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #107 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir But those things do not bring you mental pleasures. peace. PEACE LIES IN THE SOUL : Serenity appears in the very place where agitations appear. The thing that exists in your house cannot be found on the road. The thing that you can find in your soul, cannot be found outside. If agitations appear in the mind because of sensual distortions, the thirst for peace does not disappear. Hunger can be satisfied; but the hunger of the mind does not abate. Therefore, you have to satisfy the mind. When Alexander, the great died and was buried, his mother began lamenting over his death, She went weeping to the burial ground; and there she began screaming : "Where is my dear Alexander ? Where is my dear son ?" A Fakir said "Oh you mad woman ; Here countless Alexanders are buried. One day you too have to come here. Then why do you weep?" You have accepted the samsar and you have tried to get it ; but will it be yours? Has it belonged to anyone ?" You can attain everything after your search for the virtues of your soul and realise them. BEING UNCONCERNED Shri Ram had to go to forests; and the Pandavas had to wander in forests. Shri Krishna had to end his life under miserable circumstances. When you have to leave your beautiful house, will the house shed tears? Will it weep saying this: "Oh! The master who built me and used to keep me clean and beautiful is leaving me." Will it thus lament ever the separation from you? No. The house is unconcerned, 96 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #108 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir When you are travelling by train to Bombay with a lot of money and when robbers rob you of the money in the night, will the money weep for you? The money is unconcerned. It does not shed tears for you. in the same manner, the world is also unconcerned. *'This is my house. This is my shop This is my family." All this is mere illusion. You think so because of your ignorance. Actually, these things do not accompany you to the other world. Only Dharma is your supreme friend if you understand it, your illusions get away. Dharma does not concern itself with the worldly life. Hence, from it, you can attain mental peace and equanimity. THE CRUELTY OF KARMAS You must realise that all things occur on account of the effect of kaimas. You have gathered karmas in you ignorance; and now they cause calamities. When the karmas you have gathered produce certain effects, you have to experience them with equanimity. When you have invited some disasters you have to bear with them with equanimity. Think deeply about this in solitude. ''Have I got any real benefit from my external actions. ? Have I got any profit from them? Have they strengthened my soul ?" You carry out serious endeavours for your external progress; but you care very little for your internal progress. You do nothing for it. Money is more valuable than the body. The soul is more valuable than your money. When that is so what have you done for the progress and perfection of your soul? What have you done to achieve spiritual elevation ? 97 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #109 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Until now, you have done everything for your body but you have done nothing for your soul. You have surrendered all your energies and time to something which is transient, perishable and which does not really belong to you. You have done nothing for that which is immortal and that which is yours. What a contradiction ! The sight of the police brings into your mind the idea of custody; The sight of a lawyer brings into your mind the picture of a court. The sight of a professor brings into your mind the picture of a university. But do you ever think of the Paramatma when you see a sadhu ? THINKING OF YOURSELF : You do not think of yourself. How long can you depend upon borrowed things. 7 The austerity called Samayik helps you to carry out self-scrutiny. It is a safe book to study. If you study that book you will know yourself. Remain within yourself; become absorbed in yourself; and realize yourself. The "I" is the medium through which you can reach that aim. You stand on the bank of a river and you do not know how to swim across it. In order to learn swimming, we have to leap into the river. Only by means of hard endeavours can you attain perfection. Only by means of hard endeavours can you reach the Paramatma. When you realize yourself you will attain purity and perfection. When you see a Sadhu you think of Sadhana or spiritual endeavours. The sight of a Sadhu should make you think of the Paramarma and of the next world. Have you ever thought of your future ? 98 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #110 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir THE GREATNESS OF SADHUS : Like an engineer he builds up A sadhu is an engigeer. life and sanctifies it. A Sadhu functions like a lawyer also. Just as a lawyer argues for you in a court, a sadhu also helps you to get rid of your karmas. Therefore, hand over the file of your life to a sadhu and then you stop worrying. He will take care of you and he will liberate you from karmas. But if you do not place the truth before a sadhu, how can he fight against your karmas ? A sadhu is also a doctor. When you go to a doctor for treatment you speak out the truth to him. You describe to him all your sufferings. You do not conceal anything from a doctor. A doctor will give you the right medicine only when he knows the nature of your disease and he will also prescribe a proper diet. In the same manner, a sadhu also gives you spiritual medicine and prescribes certain spiritual activities and austerities which will help you to attain spiritual health. You must say that you are besieged by passions and sensual cravings; that you have the mental distortion of boasting of yourself ; that hypocrisy has become the policy of your life. If you confess the truth thus, a sadhu can show you the way to peace and felicity. When you do not describe your disease how can a sadhu help you and guide you? The Chaturmas is a spiritual camp. Here we have in-patients. You are all out-patients. Here, we give medicine to out-patients also in the form of spiritual austerities. We also give you injections in the form of atonements. A Sadhu is a qualified doctor to treat your spiritual diseases. He will cure your spiritual maladies by means of proper spiritual remedies; and will suggest the right 99 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #111 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir austerities and atonements. The maladies of the soul are treated by sadhus; and they will cure your soul of its maladies. A SADHU IS ALSO A POSTMAN. A sadhu goes to every house; and conveys to people the messages of Dharma. He goes to every house and inspires people to follow the path of Dharma. The sadhu who carries with him the message of Vitrag and who lives according to the commands of Vitrag is useful to people in every sphere of their life. Until now, you have put forth countless endeavours to attain worldly prosperity. How long will you continue those endeavours ? When you have not attained felicity So far when will you attain it? Do not waste your time and energies over the world ; carry out endeavours for your spiritual progress. NO END TO AVARICE : A poet says, "Oh you soul! Remember how imperfect you are ! Though you have been thinking that the world belongs to you it has not become yours. You have tried to exercise your sway over heaven and hell. But, Oh You fool! Have you lost your senses? How full of greed you are for the objects of the samsar ! How changeful and vacillating your mind is ! If you get five lakhs you fust for ten lakhs. If you get fifty you just for a hundred. Thus your greed is limitless. It can never be gratified. We can satisfy our physical hunger, not our mental hunger for worldly things. The moment your thirst for worldly things ends, your thirst for self-realisation appears. THE ABSENCE OF SENSE AND SELF-RESTRAINT : Speech is the basis of our life and our activities. The 100 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #112 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir success or failure of our life depends on our speech. Therefore, see that your speech is pure, sensible and restrainted. Let us suppose you have an excellent car. It gives you great delight to sit in it. But if you, in your infatuation, sit in your car, would you travel by it, if your driver tells you that the brakes have failed. No ! !t may be an expensive car but if its brakes have failed, you would not travel by it. Similarly, there is the need for restraint on your speech. Unrestrained speech can bring about unforeseen calamities. If speech is not controlled properly, it may bring about death. On account of Hitler's blunder one crore and eighty lakh people had to die. Because speech lacked sense and politeness, the great Mahabharatha war took place causing the decimation of crores of people during the eighteen days of the war, The Pandavas invited the Kauravas to a dinner. The Pandavas, at that time, lived in a magnificent palace. In one room, the floor was made to resemble water. Thinking that it was water, Duryodhana stepped into it as one steps into water. Seeing this. the Pandavas, especially Draupadi laughed hilariously. In another chamber, the floor seemed to be an excellently and artistically laid out floor. It looked cool and still like marble floor. The Kauravas walked on, thinking that it was a marble floor and they fell into the water. The Pandavas laughed at them. At that moment, Draupadi said something which marked the commencement of the mightiest kind of hostility. She said, "Now, I see that even the children of the blind are blind." She spoke thus without restraint. The Kauravas were enraged. They cried out in a terrifying voice, "Ah. How dare you insult our revered father" Duryodhana took a terrible oath, "If I do not make Draupadi sit upon my thigh, I am not Duryodhana." 101 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #113 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Hearing this, Bhima became enraged; and roared, "If I do not break that thigh and drink that blood, I am not Bhima." The arrows of speech were thus released without restraint and the consequence was the Kurukshetra war. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Wars orginate in our hearts and minds. The second world war originated from Hitler's mind. What kind of end did Hitler meet? How did he die? If you know this you too will pity him. He had to die in a very pitiable manner. He had to shoot himself. Before shooting himself he said to his confidante, "After my death, pour petrol upon my body and set fire to it". Hitler, the mighty military hero, under whose iron heels the whole world shuddered with mortal dread, had to die thus in utter despair and humiliation, probably realising at the end that life is but a walking shadow, a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more and that all our yesterdays have lighted fools the way to dusty death. Hence, there is the need for a proper restraint on our speech. All dissensions originate from speech. Noble things also have their source in speech. Speech can bring about a hell or a heaven. Today people do not exercise restraint on their speech; they do not scrutinise their soul and they do not ponder over tatvas. They do not even care to entertain the question "Who am I?" THE INDIGESTION OF INTELLIGENCE : Now-a-days, there is what may be called indigestion of intelligence and it may lead to our total ruin. Scientists have made the atomic bomb. What will be 102 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #114 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir the consequence of this development ? Undoubtedly, the consequences would be dreadful. Those who were engaged in making such bombs had to die in a tragic manner. At the end, they had to die groaning. They became mad. The victims of the atomic bomb cursed the makers of the bomb. Even the makers were filled with repentance. What a terrible misuse of intelligence ! intelligence should lie in speech. Word or speech gives expression to intelligence, If one word functions like medicine, another can cause a terrible wound. See the effect of words ; one word can kill thousands, but another can save thousands of lives. Harsh words wound the hearts of people. Can anyone bear with harsh words ? On account of agitations, people find it difficult to exercise restraint on their speech. As long as you do not exercise a restraint on your speech, there will be no happiness and peace ; therefore, it is absolutely necessary to exercise a restraint on our speech. SAINT AND SATAN : One day a Rajput happened to meet the Buddha. For some reason, he was very angry with the Buddha and he spat at the Buddha and disgraced him in the presence of his disciples but the Buddha was absolutely serene and calm. This intensified the anger of the Kshatriya. He again and again spat at the Buddha ; yet the Buddha was calm and composed. He never uttered a single word. His disciples said, "If you permit us we will destory this fellow within seconds !" if the Buddha had uttered one word, the Kshatriya would have died, but slaying a person is an easy job but keeping a person alive is an extemely difficult job. 103 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #115 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir If a dog bites you, would you also bite it? The Buddha said, "He has become devilish. Shall also become a devil ? Shall I stoop to that level? He is revealing his nature and I am revealing my nature. Shall I also behave like him?" The Kshatriya had become blind with anger. He had no words to speak out; so he spat. He experienced a kind of peace by doing so. The Buddha said, "I am not going to behave thus''. Here is an instance from the present-day iife. If someone is angry and is shouting abuses into the phone, you can say, "wrong number'. That would be enough. His anger would at once come down to the zero degree. If there is no one to hear the words of an angry man he will himself cool down. You must always keep this point in your mind, "If react violently to the words of an angry man his anger would increase". Where there is a reaction there is agitation. Where there is a reaction there is total ruin. Where there is violence there is a decline. he At lasts will If someone hurls abuses at a saint, he will remain calm; he does not react to those words. At last, the man who is insulting the saint using abusive words will become tired and will grow silent. He who tolerates such abuses does not experience tiresomeness. If a man who endeavours for something does not get the fruit for which he endeavours he will give up his endeavour at the end. He will stop his endeavours on account of tiresomeness. That Rajput was also tired of hurling abuses at the Buddha. Because there was no 104 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #116 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir reaction from Buddha, he had to stop scolding him. What a great saint the Buddha was ! He was never ovoked by such a treatment. Whatever might be the provocation he remained calm and serene. At last, that man repented his action and fell at the feet of the Buddha, saying, "Dear Lord, in my ignorance insulted you and hurled abuses at you. I disgraced you. I have realised my blunder. Kindly pardon me. ! have committed a great blunder". The saint said, "Noble man, if you bring a presentation to me and if ! do not accept it, to whom does it belong? It belongs naturally to the man who brought it and he has to take it back. In the same manner, you gave me a gift of abusive language and I did not receive it and now to whom does it belong ? If I had received it, it would be with me. Since I did not receive it, it is with you. Where is the need for my pardoning you ? I have no concern with something that belongs to others". SPEECH AND OUR DEALINGS WITH OTHERS ; Dharma appears in our speech or action that emerges from deep and wise thoughts. Dharma is the name given to our speech or action carried out with wisdom and thoughfulness. What are the principles that govern speech ? Be brief and agreeable in your speech. Think well and speak. Sant Tulsidas says, "If you speak or act in an evil way and if I am silent then you will not have energy to continue your evil speech or actions. !f I react to your foul language, it becomes a continuous process". If we put fire-wood into the owen, how long will it burn? Only for a short while ! Bhagwan Mahaveer bore with all impediments with calmness; and at the end those who caused impediments 105 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #117 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra had to shed tears. If you gather karmas you yourself have to experience its fruits. How unexampled Mahaveer's contemplation is ! Shri Mahavear showed kindness to Sangamdev who caused great troubles to him and his eyes grew moist with politeness. May the eyes of Mahaveer be supremely blessed and felicitous. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir He deemed a malefactor, a benefactor. He regarded even the one who caused trouble to him a benefactor. He says: He bestowed a great benefaction upon me by He strengthening my equanimity. He tested my strength put me in the fire of impediments and proved my purity." The Bhagwan's eyes grew moist with tears. Why? Was it because he had to experience agony? No. He felt sorry for Sangamdev who would go to hell on account of his actions. Bhagwan Mahaveer shed tears of compassion. We should return good for evil. We should entertain generous and noble thoughts even with respect to wicked people. Therefore, there is the need for a restraint our speech. 7 on In the Jain terminology, it is called Bhasha samiti or restraint on speech. It means that we should always be cautious regarding our speech and we should see that our speech has propriety and usefulness. For Private And Personal Use Only If we carry out our actions thinking of the other world, those actions constitute Dharma. TOLERANCE: Eknath was a Brahmachari i. e.. one who practised celibacy. His face shone with the splendour of Brahma charya. He went on a pilgrimage to Benares ; and one 106 Page #118 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir morning, he went to bathe in the Ganga. He was yet young at that time. He had got his head tonsured. He began to descend the steps of the river to bathe in it. A young man was sitting at that time on the bank of the river. He saw Eknath. He thought : "This fellow must be a hypocrite. He does not care to make a living by means of hard work. So, he has become a sadhu. Let me test him and find out whether he is a genuine sadhu or a hypocritical fellow." Because he was a young man, he began making fun of Eknaih. But no saint has ever been hypocritical, or cowardly. Always, great saints have been subjected to severe ordeals. Mohammad, the prophet had to face many ordeals; Jesus was crucified. Mahaveer had to face severe impediments. The Buddha had to experience many ordeals at the hands of Devadatta. Tolerance is essential if one should become great. Here is a story which illustrates this point. Do you know what ordeals the Dahi Bada (a dish called by that name) has to experience to become a Bada (a dish) ? The word also means 'great' in Hindi. The bada says, "I have had to experience a lot of pain and agony to become a Bada. First, I had to take a bath in the Ganga. Then I was made into a paste with a pestle and a mortar. Then I was shaped into small balls and then pressed. Then I was put into boiling oil. Then I became a bada." Here we have a humorous Sbut symbolic description of the ordeals that one has to experience to become a great man or a saint. THE TASTE OF SADHANA : This is the taste of sadhana or endeavours. Here we have the sweet fragrance of sublime tolerance. Eknath, after taking a bath, came up to the bank. Just then, that young man spat upon him. Eknath did 107 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #119 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra not even look up. He went back quietly to the river; bathed again and came up to the bank. Again, the young man spat at him. It was the winter season; and the air was cold and biting. The water was as cold as ice. Yet, Eknath without reacting in any way, went back to the river; bathed and returned. Again, the young man spat at him. Eknath again quietly went back to the river; bathed and returned The young man spat at him again. He did so fifty times, and Eknath had to bathe in the river fifty times. Yet, he was not angry. There was no trace of anger or gloom on his face. He was as cheerful and as serene as ever He thought, "This may be the will of the Paramafma. Probably, he will be ashamed of his action or probably he has been testing me. He may be the Paramatma in disguise. Who knows?"" Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Sometime later, the young man was tired of spitting thus. He felt ashamed of his action. With repentance, he fell at the feet of Eknath, and then folding his hands humbly; with his eyes streaming with tears, he said, "Revered sir! kindly forgive me, 1 have insulted you. I repent my action and I am experiencing inordinate agitation in my heart. You are, indeed, a great man and my behaviour has been despicable". Eknath helped him to stand up and embraced him. He felt thankful to the young man and said, "I have been proud of myself, thinking! was great, but today I have been subjected to a severe ordeal. Your attitude of contempt has given me spiritual strength and satisfaction. Today, I would have bathed in the Ganga only once. But by your grace, I have bathed in the river fifty times. You did not insult me; on the other hand, you have bestowed a great benefaction upon me. I have earned the merit of having bathed in the Ganga fifty times. grace, I had to bathe in the river fifty times." tremendous tolerance! What an extraordinary kind nity! How sweet was his spirituality! 108 For Private And Personal Use Only By your What a of sere Page #120 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra If you were in that position what would you say ? How can you attain the quality of humanity? We can attain the quality of humanity by treating others like ourselves, Try to attain spiritual serenity and firmness. Do not give way to conflicts and agitations. Always speak in a polite and pleasant manner. - ENJOYING SWEET SPEECH : Always speak in a sweet and pleasant manner. If food is not tasty, we cannot enjoy it. Similarly, if our speech lacks sweetness, others cannot enjoy it. Therefore, your speech should be sweet and pleasant. Others enjoy such speech. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Bhagwan Mahaveer's message is that our words should not cause pain or sorrow to other jivas. We should speak after careful thought. From the children of your family, the culture of your family can be known. The minds of children are highly impressionable. The atmosphere of your family can be known from the way your children speak. Children easily and at once take on every good and evil feature of the family. It has been rightly said that a child's vocation is an endless imitation. Wherever anger appears, anguish at once makes its appearance. Dissensions originate from dissent. Because people could not speak in the right manner, mighty wars took place. Speech must possess sweetness and perfection. If speech depends on a relative approach to reality. it will not lead to misunderstandings. If people adopt the attitude called multidimensional approach to reality or the Anekant point of view all conflicts disappear and they end in happy compromises. 109 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #121 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir If speech lakhs sense it becomes poison. If speech is irrelevant, it will be harmful like mik given to a man suffering from dysentery. TRUE BUT NOT UNPLEASANT. Our speech must be true and pleasant not unpleasant, Even unpleasant things should be expressed in a pleasant manner. If we say that somebody is a thief or that he is dishonest, it will hurt him. But if you say, "you must become honest", he will surely take this precept in good part, though it implies that he is not honest. Once an emperor saw in his dream a strange thing. All his teeth fell off his mouth. He wondered what the dream signified. So he consulted the court-astrologer. The astrologer happened to be a man given to the habit of speaking out his opinions bluntly and in a cut and dried manner. So he said, "Your excellency ! Your dream signifies that all the members of your family will die before you". On hearing this, the emperor was greatly grieved and depressed. He did not give any gifts to the astrologer. Then the emperor consulted a Sadhu. On being consulted, the Sadhu looked at the problem from the Anekant point of view. The emperor said to the sadhu, "Do you know the significance of my dream ?" "'Yes, your excellency !" "You see 1 In my dream I saw all my teeth falling down. What does this signify ?" "Your excellency, it is an extremely auspicious dream. It is an excellent dream". "Ah! How amazing ! Do you say that it is an 110 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #122 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir auspicious dream? How ? Come, tell me. Others have been saying that it is an inauspicious dream". The muni said, "Your excellency! The dream signifies that, of all the members of your family, you have been blessed with the longest span of life". The emperor said, "Very good. explanation". Thank you for your The Sadhu's explanation was not really different from that of the astrologer but he put it in an agreeable manner. His way of speaking the truth was different from that of the astrologer. The astrologer had explained the dream from the negative point of view, but the muni explained it from the positive point of view. If we speak with love, it inspires noble thoughts in others. It will purify our dealings with others and it will lead us on the way to Moksha. Therefore, let your dealings with others be pure and noble. Use your senses for noble purposes. In order to attain this purity, you must see that your speech is truthful and pleasant. Always, use your sense in speaking so that your speech may not become harmful to others. If you speak sensibly it will bring you ability as well as nobility. The Paramatma has given us intelligence so that we may acquire knowledge ; not to commit sinful karmas and to prolong our samsar. The greater the purity of your speech, the greater your happiness. My auspicious aspiration for you is that you should attain spiritual awakening with the guidance of your friend Dharma. Dharma is the most reliable thing. Dharma never betrays the heart that loves it. 111 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #123 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir The Supreme benefactor, the Jineswar Bhagwan has shown us the way to Moksha by delivering his lofty discourses. He bestowed upon the world the light he had obtained by years of spiritual endeavour. He has described a path by which we can reach him. "Oh you Gautam ! one should not be in a state of infatuation even for a moment'. state of ignora If a person dies in a state of infatuation or in a state of ignorance, that death will bring a series of deaths later. It will be something like an advance-booking for endless samsar. Therefore, the Paramatma preached that we should awaken our souls from their stupor of infatuation. Pramad (infatuation) is a terrible enemy of man. Spiritual awakening is nothing but the absence of infatuation. In this state of spiritual awakening, one can see oneself. The devotees of Mahaveer will conquer death, if they achieve the aim of spiritual realisation. Only an awakened soul is free from the fear of death. Whether death occurs to-day or tomorrow it does not daunt an awakened soul. The awakened soul says, "Do not deride me. Do not make any accusations against me. Do not defame me Do you think 1. am afraid of death? Not at all. I am a devotee of Bhagwan Mahaveer". For Private And Personal Use Only Page #124 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir People would say, "'The whole world is afraid of death. Are you not afraid of death ?" No. Only those who commit sins fear death. Only those who have stayed away from the path prescribed by the Paramatma and who have ignored his commands, fear death. This life is not meant merely to fill the gap between birth and death. It has higher purposes. We have to make this entreaty to the Paramatma, "'! do not desire worldly prosperity. I do not have any worldly desire. I am not poor. I have not approached you like a beggar seeking alms. I have not come to your doors to agitate you with my problems and worries or entreaties for worldly prosperity. My only aspiration is this. My only request is this, Kindly help me to die, never to be born again. Kindly bestow upon me mental purity and spiritual excellence''. Do such devotees get anything from the Paramatma ? They renounce the samsar and approach the Paramatma and return having been elevated to the level of the Paramatma spiritually. Those who appear before the supreme court of the Paramatma and confess everything become elevated to the level of the Paramatma. We can visualise and realise the Paramatma by means of spiritual endeavours and austerities. What is Dharma ? What is the soul? Dharma is the friend of the soul. Dharma is one but the ways to attain it are many. Dharma becomes strengthened by contemplations. Truth is its protein. Truth makes Dharma strong and firm while karmas weaken it. Karmas are like maladies that disable us and 113 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #125 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir prevent us from carrying out spiritual austerities. Therefore we should keep off karmas which are like dreadful maladies; and thus we should practise Dharma. Follow the right path. Give up your improper ways. You will attain your objectives. We have to think deeply about what we should say and how we should say it. Dharma arises with speech and attains perfection in self-realisation. Begin adoring Dharma. Carry out spiritual endeavours. Give the doctrines of Dharma a practical form and your soul will attain perfection. Probably, you do not know that your soul is deathless. But your actions and thoughts have their impact or your soul. Carrying out Pratikrawan, at home or in your shop is practical Dharma. Giving the samayik a practical shape in our actions is Dharma. You will realise yourself through your spiritual activities. You will realise your soul without the help of words. A shop where they sell different kinds of scent need not be given any advertisement. If you attain detachment in your thoughts and actions, you will win the love of all. Only then will your endeavours emit excellent fragrance and become imbued with love. the feeling of cordiality or amity We should adopt towards all jivas. "I have amity for all jivas. I have no enimity against any jiva''. 114 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #126 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir You must adopt this attitude towards all jivas in this universe. and ignoble propen Ignoble thoughts, ignoble actions sities are harmful to the soul. Those who fight against external enemies prolong their asamsar and those who fight against their internal enemies attain the status of the Arihant. You must carry out a war against your inner enemies. As long as your Aham (ego) keeps you under its sway, you cannot attain any development or progress. Egoism paralyses the soul. The first means of Dharma is the tongue or speech. If your speech is not imbued with the spirit of Dharma, the business of your life gets jeopardized. How long will you retain your egoism? It is a dreadful disease. It corrupts your speech, and your habits make you helpless. How far can you carry a dead thing of the past? You have to achieve progress on your path. You have to achieve development. So get rid of your burdens. It is not necessary that you should get inspiration from the past. Ignore the past, otherwise you will have to face conflicts. It is also foolish to travel thinking only of the future. If your present life is not pure and noble, you cannot make your future bright. Therefore, you have to think of the present and carry out endeavours. You should not dive into the past or float into the future. Swim in the present and reach the shore. 115 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #127 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir future The beauty of our present life. lies in the purity of our He who carries out sublime austerities in the present, shapes a sublime future for himself. But our present life is replete with ignoble thoughts; ignoble actions and insidious cravings. He A beggar keeps floating on the waves of fancy. merely builds castles in the air and so his future is vague. If you approach God as a beggar, you wiil get nothing. If a wealthy merchant is taking rest and at that time if a beggar comes to his doors and begs for money, what does the merchant do? He will give the beggar five paise and send him away. This is not the proper way. Your devotion must be devoid of desire. You should not expect any reward for your devotion Your aim must be to attain self-realisation and spiritual prosperity, and worldly prosperity should be an incidental aim. It should come as a by-product. You go to the temple of the Paramatma ; and you enact a drama there playing a double role. Outwardly, you pray, "Oh Lord Shantinath ! Save my soul"; but inwardly you pray "Oh Lord, may the prices of my goods increase !" Do you think that the Paramatma is ignorant ? He is an omniscient one. He knows the past, the present and the future. Nothing can be concealed from him. Can you be cured of your disease if you conceal it from your doctor? In the same manner, if you do not reveal and repent your sins you cannot get rid of them. A beggar lay asleep on a foot-path. He saw a bridal horse trotting by, carrying the bride-groom. Seeing that beautiful horse, he began building castles in the air. He began floating on the waves of fancy. "If I get the first prize in the state lottery, I will get ten lakhs. I will 116 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #128 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra invest that money in huge profits and in my ficent horse than this". some large business. I will earn marriage, I will ride a more magni Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir The beggar happened to be sleeping in front of a jeweller's shop That night, he dreamt of splendour and affluence In his dream he secured the first prize in a lottery and he got ten lakhs. He bought a magnificent bungalow. He was betrothed to a beautiful and affluent girl. The marriage also came off. He sat on a magnificent horse and proceeded to the marriage pandal. The horse reached the marriage-pandal' The marriage took place. He made circumbulations around the sacrificial fire. The time came for joining hands. Now, the problem arose. He extended his hand to hold the hand of his bride; but he could not reach her hand. He began extending his hand; and his hand was moving towards the lock of the jeweller's shop. The policeman who was passing by, saw it; and thought that he must be a burglar. He, at once, dealt a heavy blow on his hand with his lathi. The beggar woke up from his dream. He said to the policeman, "Oh ! If you had come here a few minutes later, at least, I would have held the hand of my bride". The policeman heard his storry and said laughing : "Well for marrying in your dream you had to taste only one blow. If you really marry, you may have to receive many blows'. The thought and actions of our life during the day appear to us as dreams in our sleep. There was a clothmerchant One day, he did good business and a lot of cloth was sold. There was such a rush of customers that throughout the day, he had to keep cutting clorh. He did not have leisure even for a minute. On that night, he dreamt of the same thing. Even in his dream, he kept cutting cloth. When in the morning, he woke up, he found that he had cut his dhoti into pieces. Dreams do not come true. Therefore, do not float on the waves of dreams. We should live in the present, 117 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #129 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir and we should put our ideals into practice. Our mental cravings may cause loss to us in our external life or they may not. But they are sure to cause severe loss to our inner life. Mahaveer was in the stage called chadmastha ( in the human body). He used to remain silent. Until he attained spiritual perfection he carried out his spiritual endeavours in silence. Silence brings stillness to the mind. Where there is stillness or firmness there is spiritual development. Later, that will lead to perfection. Patanjali says, "Achieving mental firmness and spiritual firmness is the supreme yoga." Acharya Hemachandra Suriswarji says, "Yoga leads to Moksha." Yoga means achieving firmness of the mind and the soul. Sadhanas or spiritual endeavours constitute a quality of the soul. Pratikraman is a Sadhana. Pratikraman means a retreat. It means retreating from sinful thoughts and activities. The man who achieves equanimity attains spiritual serenity. In such a case, mental conflicts disappear. In the Pratikraman he says "Tanenam. Monenam." It means that we should carry out the spiritual activity of achieving firmness in respect of the soul, the intellect, the substancə and the attitude and that we should carry out sadhana in silence, for we should attain firmness and then we should achieve silence and enter the state of meditation. Dhyana or meditation means accepting an objective and concentrating upon it. Silence can achieve all things. It is the life of Dharma. 118 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #130 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir It is a fountain of nspiration for our spiritual as well our mundane developments. If you learn the art of speaking to the point, you will attain spiritual beauty. Brevity in speech conduces to the beauty of the soul As long as you keep talking, Ilfe will not prove congenial to your spiritual pursuits and you can never achieve the firmness of the inner soul. Speech is not necessary to attain perfection in Sadhana. We can realise and visualise the highest state of existence only in silence. In this state, non-violence, naturally gets established and our activities become pervaded with love. On account of this attraction for lofty thoughts, our ignoble thoughts get annihilated. The words of the Paramatma possess a miraculous efficacy. While hearing his words you would forget hunger and thirst. Wherever the Paramatma moves about, even the violent and wild creatures of the area become transformed into non-violent beings. This is the effect of the Paramanus of lofty thoughts. A sadhu lived in a village. He was an excellent Sadhaka and had conquered his senses totally. For the most part, he used to be silent The people of the village entreated him to say something The Sadhu spoke out thus, "I have nothing to say." The Chaturmas arrived. The people again entreated him to deliver a discourse for their spiritual enlightenment. When he was thus entreated by the people, he decided to say something. He felt that he should comply with their request. The sadhu was absorbed in his endeavours. His mode of life itself communicated his message. The Sadhu sang a hymn of invocation. The people had been desirous of hearing a discourse for many days. 119 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #131 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir They thought that on that day they would have the opportunity of hearing a discourse from the sadhu and hoped that he would speak out his heart. With these expectations a large number of people gathered and sat eager to hear the discourse The sadhu said in a very serene manner, "I want to know whether you have faith in the Paramatma." The people fell into a dilemma. They began to wonder whether they would visit the temple without faith in the Paramatma They replied, "Yes, revered sir ! We have faith in the Paramatma". The sadhu said, "Then, my discourse has ended". The people said, "Revered sir! What is this? You have completed your discourse by posing only one question." The sadhu said, ''What I wanted to communicate to you through my discourse has been already attained by you. You have faith in the Paramatma. That is enough What is the use of wasting time in delivering discourses ? Let us all turn inwards and try to attain self-realisation". Some days later, the people again insisted upon his delivering a discourse. They said, "Today is an auspicious day. Kindly give us some spiritual guidance". Since the people were so insistent, the sadhu gave his consent to deliver a discourse. On this occasion also a large number of devotees came to hear his discourse They were all greatly eager to hear his discourse. On that day also, the sadhu posed a question, He said, "Do you have faith in the Paramatma ?". They had already known what the sadhu would ask them, from their experience of the earlier day. So they had got ready a different answer. They said, "No. we have no faith in the Paramatma". 120 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #132 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra On hearing this, the sadhu sang out the valediction and ended his discourse. The people again fell into a dilemma. The people began to wonder what kind of discourse it was and why the sadhu had ended his discourse without saying anything. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir The sadhu said, "There is no point in delivering a discourse to you since you have no faith in the Paramatma at all. How can we grow fruits without seeds ?" They were disappointed this time also. The Chaturmas ended. The time came to bid farewell to the sadhu who was about to set off on his vihar. On that day also, the people entreated him to deliver a discourse. The sadhu decided to deliver a discourse. He sang the invocation and posed the question. "Do you have faith in the Paramatma ?". They knew that whether they said "Yes or no", the sadhu would not deliver a discourse. So on that day, they adopted a different plan. One half of the people said "Yes, we have faith in the Paramatma". The other half said, "No We do not have faith in the Paramatma". They thought that on that day the sadhu had to deliver a discourse. The sadhu sang out the invocation and soon, without saying anything else, he concluded his discourse by singing a song of valediction. The people were greatly amazed and asked the sadhu, "'Maharaj ! Today also you have ended your discourse without saying anything. What is the secret of this?" The sadhu said, "Even discourses are a world in themselves. Here also we experience a decline and a failure. 1 got ready to deliver a discourse on account of your insistence but I find that I need not say anything to you. Those who have faith in the Paramatma and those who know about the Paramatma may teach the others what they know. I need not deliver a discourse to you". 121 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #133 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir "We can get out of any dilemma by means of Syadvad. We can find a way out of every complexity. In Syadvad a problem is approached from all points of view. It depends on an amalgamation of all the points of view. By means of Syadvad we can keep off conflicts and find solutions to our problems. Any austerity can attain perfection only in silence. It encourages deep thoughtfulness. Silence enables us to exercise a control over ourselves. Therefore, we should be brief in our utterances. Brevity is the soul of wit. The energy that we get by drinking one litre of milk is lost in the utterance of a single word. Silence keeps off conflicts; and brings peace of mind. Silence gives us the strength contemplations. to carry out spiritual "Deliverance in the samsar". By means of silence, we can attain deliverance even while in the samsar. We should try to be silent whenever we can. Silence has miraculous effects. Silence adds strength to our Mantras. We should think before speaking, and should realize the implication of our words Silence gives us the opportunity to reflect and think. Tolstoy said, "The life of a man is a battle - field'. Human life is a battle-field. There is no peace there. By means of Sadhana we can keep off agitations and attain mental peace. Where there is anguish, there is agitation. The world abounds in ideological differences and conflicts; and the ego asserts itself in the worldly life. Where egoism asserts itself, the samsar entangles people in its endless snares. 122 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #134 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Speech may cause agitation ; but silence surely brings peace. If a Sadhak aims at exploring his own house, he will reach his aim. Here, house means the soul. The nature of the samsar is to engage the souls in conflicts. The soul has to escape from those conflicts and the Kashayas or passions that originate from cravings. Let samsar be burnt away but take care that the sout is not burnt away. Conflict means samsar. The Kashayas of the samsar are dreadful flames. Anger, agitation and anguish originate from speech. If you want to carry out Sadhana, first enter into a state of silence. Discard your Aham or egoism. After Aham (egoism) disappears Nabam (selflessness) appears. After that the question arises: “Who am I? This contemplation ends all conflicts. Finally, you will attain the level of Soham (I am he). Soham is supremely beneficial. It brings the highest kind of felicity. A certain gentleman went to meet a friend of his. He knocked on the door of his friend's house. Someone asked from inside: "Who is it?' He replied, "It is 1" There was no turther reply from inside. The door remained shut. The gentleman had to return home. The next day also, the same thing happened. He began to think, "'Though he is my friend he does not give any reply. Why is it?'' The next day he went ; knocked on the door and said, "Are you in ?" The door was opened. This question is philosophical in its suggestivity. When the difference in identity disappeared, the door to truth was opened. "I am". This does not help you to meet the Paramatma. You can attain the Paramatma only if you discard your Aham (egoism). 123 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #135 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir If you reach the stage of Naham and proceed further, you will get the question : "Who am I? Who are you? "I am myself". This reply suggests that you are egoistic To-day, we do not have a knowledge of language or of Dharma. Adinath Bhagwan invented the Brahmi script. He also invented the decimal system and the art of sculpture. Why is Kumbha (a holy pot) auspicious ? First, Rishabhdev himself made the Kumbha. Hence, it is considered auspicious. The sound "Hum" in Gujarati signifies 24 avatars ; 24 Tirtankaras and 24 Buddhas. The sound implies that you are one of them. The nasal sound in Hum is suggestive of Moksha. By means of self-realization you can attain the status of a Siddha ; but if you keep away from self-realization you will have to go to hell. Where silence appears sense also arises. Sense is sweet. The words that are uttered with sense are pleasant, If you are sensible in your speech you will benefit from it. You will attain success. You will not experience any loss. A sensible man speaks after careful thinking. The substance is one; but there are many ways of seeing it or knowing it. This requires intelligence, expertness and intellectual incisiveness. You should think carefully and see whether what you say is beneficial to your soul or not. If you acquire this sense, your karmas will get destroyed, When a jiva attains self-realization, he will not enter the cycle of samsar again. 124 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #136 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra It is foolish to buy the samsar in exchange for spiritual austerities. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir How do people use their intelligence? They do all that they can to get out of worldly difficulties but they do not do anything to save their souls. Do we use our intelligence for the sake of our soul? The soul is steeped in a stupor of infatuation, deception and delusion. Have you awakened your soul? This discourse is a 'Class'. Here discourses are delivered to you in the Chaturmas. On the day of the Jnan Panchami, will give you a test, I want to see how far my endeavours have been successful in bringing about a change in you. The test will make it clear to me. I carry out my endeavours. 1 carry out scriptural studies. I desire success for my endeavours. After you hear my discourses for four months, I will ask you, "How is the samsar ?". One would say, "It is corrupt". A second man will say, "I do not like to live in the samsar". The third one will say, "It is very painful and it causes anguish". The fourth one will say, "It is absolutely painful and it is full of agitations and anguish". The fifth one will say, "It is dangerous and dreadful"'. If all of you give such replies, I will say unto you, "If samsar is painful, corrupt and dreadful, join me on my vihar. Will you join me or not ?" 125 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #137 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir I want you to act according to dharma, I do not want you to be satisfied with the theory of dharma. Look at a tree. When its fruits grow ripe, they fall down. They need not be plucked Such ripe fruits are sweet and tasty. Only half-rips fruits will hav: to be plucked. If you attain ripeness in your thoughts, naturally the samsar gets discarde 1. My task is to bring about ripeness in your thoughts ; and I am staying here for this purpose. Living in the samsar is also an art. The ship floats on the water. It should be welded in such way that water does not enter it. As long as water does not enter it, there is no danger. As soon as water enters the ship, it sinks and is destroyed. As long as the water of samsar does not enter your mind there is no danger but as soon as that water enters your mind, your ruin is certain. You should safeguard your soul to avoid this disaster. 126 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #138 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra THUS SPAKE THE PARAMATMA VI Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir The supreme benefactor, the Jineshwar Paramatma preached the dharma, for the spiritual elevation of all jivas. You should remember that your speech is the basis of your life. It is the basis of all your activities in life. The Paramatma's utterances are perfect, pure and absolutely free from attachments and hatred. It is not a curse but a blessing; it bestows upon us a supreme benefaction. What the Paramatma attained by means of his endeavours; what he saw with his Kevaljnan, he revealed through his utterances for the spiritual elevation of jivas. He bestowed this benefaction upon jivas with benevolence. There is no superfluity in the Paramatma's utterances. There is nothing inauspicious about them. They give expression to pure Tatvas which are sweet and beneficial and which possess the thirty six virtues of speech. His utterances are unexampled for their sublimity and splendour. If you hear those utterances with faith, they will inspire in you the spirit of renunciation; and they will create in you a hunger for salvation. Such is the efficacy of the Paramatma's utterances. They possess a special virtue. His utterances are appealing because they are imbued with love and because they are totally devoid of attachments and hatred. "Dharma is nothing but the right spiritual endeavour": For Private And Personal Use Only Page #139 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir "Dharma means carrying out endeavours to attain selfrealization''. Four kinds of endeavours are mentioned in Shastras. They are : Dharma, Artha, Kama and Moksha. By means of the Dharmapurushart, you will attain the pure tatva or knowledge. If you should attain victory over attachments and hatred you need the aid of discourses. If you maintain mental firmness or equanimity, you will attain Vitragata. You cannot attain Moksha without sublime thoughts and such thoughts are inspired in you by discourses. The bullets of 303 rifle are very small but yet they can hit the desired target and they possess a tremendous speed, How can such small bullets travel at such a terrible speed? Their explosion is terrible. What is the cause for this ? THE EXPLOSION OF THOUGHT : !f there is an explosion of thoughts and if they get the pressure of contemplations, like bullets getting pressure, their target, moksha can be attained in a moment. Using speech for that purpose helps the progress of the soul. That was the reason why the Paramatma delivered discourses. His discourses had no other purpose than this ; Their only purpose was that all jivas should attain spiritual progress. He who thirsts for the Paramatma, automatically discards his Aham (egoism); Therefore, there is this speciality in Jain darshan. According to the Jain darshan we should not expect only rewards for our endeavours. ADORATION : If you want to carry out the adoration of dharma, your first and foremost duty is to recite the Namaskarmantra. In that mantra, all atmas are adored and saluted. That mantra is not a glorification of Tirthankars ; on the contrary, 128 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #140 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir an adoration is offered to all those jivas who have attained Vitaragata or victory over attachments and hatred. All Vitrags are adored and saluted in the mantra, whether they are Hindus or Sikhs or Buddhists or Jains. The Navakarmantra is a glorification of all those who have attained perfection by means of endeavours. “Namo Arihantanam". That means we adore and salute all those who have conquered attachments and hatred, desires and passions, distortions and derogations, whether they are living at present or whether they lived in the past or whether they are going to appear in the future. In that mantra all Arihants of all times are adored. in the Navakarmantra all Siddhas are adored and salu ted. All Siddhas who have attained perfection, who are devoid of attachments and hatred; who are absolutely sublime like Sri Ram and Lord Krishna, who have attained absolute perfection and purity are saluted in the mantra. All the austerities that should be carried out to become Arihants or Siddhas are described in Dharma. THE WAY TO BECOME AN ARIHANT : What is the proper way to attain the status of the Arihant ? The potentiality to become a Paramatma lies latent and dormant in every soul. We must search for it and we must exercise that potentiality so that our Atma may become Paramatma. Mahaveer does not have any monopoly over the status of an Aribant ; there is no secrecy in it ; anyone can attain that status. That potentiality is present in every soul. The Paramatma is an omniscient one. He is the mighttiest of seers. He has shown by his example how an 129 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #141 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Atma can become a Paramatma. If you follow his example you too can attain that level. How can you reach that level ? You must lead your life in such a way that the samsar itself becomes a blessing and a treasure-house of renunciation. Mahaveer has shown the way to achieve this objective. THE NECESSITY OF PURITY IN FOOD : As is the food; so is the mood. As is the mood; so is your contemplation. If you attain purity in your thoughts and actions, you will attain in consequence, the Paramatma and the samsar will end. You should live according to dharma and every action of yours should be based on the Vitragtatva. "Idealism in thought but pragamatism in action". It is this contradiction that brings about samsar. If our actions are in consonance with our ideals, then it will be easy to attain moksha. Oh my soul ! How can I make my actions conducive to your welfare ? King Janaka was a Videhi (a bodiless one); Why? Mithila was a vast and splendid empire and Janaka was its emperor, yet Bhagwan Vyasa has called Janaka a Videhi (a bodiless one). What was the reason for this? The reason was that while remaining in the midst of imperial splendour, he remained totally detached from it. Once, when he was informed that the city of Mithila was burning and his palace was on fire, he experienced no agitation. He calmly said, "Nothing of mine is burning ; nothing which is really mine can burn, my soul is mine and it cannot be burnt". ALL EXTERNAL OBJECTS ARE BORROWED ; "Those external objects that can be burnt are not 130 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #142 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra mine; the city of mine; my body is We Mithila is not mine; my palace is not not mine; even my name is not mine''. All these are merely borrowed objects. Borrowed objects have to be returned when the time arrives, We attain them by virtue fortune. Nature lends them to us. belong to us. of Our punya or good They do not really THE INNER SPLENDOUR: should leave the external world, and enter the inner world; We should discard our selfishness and all our attachments. The external objects do not really belong to us; what lies within us belongs to us. We cannot get fruitfulness or satisfaction in our endeavour to get outward objects. Only because of our ignorance do we desire to possess external objects, If you endeavour to get external objects that endeavour will not bring you felicity. If you become perfect outwardly you will remain imperfect inwardly. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Therefore, Lord Mahaveer said, "Try to attain internal perfection". If you are imperfect outwardly, you can become perfect inwardly; and you will find a way to reach the Paramatma. Aham brings about animosities; and attachment brings about Mamatva (the feeling of mine). THE BONDAGE OF THE BODY : Those two are the enemies of the soul. On account of our ordinary sins we are bound in the body; we have fallen into the bondage of samsar. We have fallen into this bondage by our own ignorance. Where are the match-sticks kept? They are kept in 131 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #143 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Sacrifices a packet. Why? are to be made; not in retail but or wholesale basis. How are you going to make such sacrifices ? I AND MINE: Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir As long as match-sticks have the power of catching fire and burning, they are kept in a box under control and when they are struck against the match-box and when their power to burn IS exhausted, they attain freedom. Automatically, they become free. They are not again put into any box. In the same manner as long as our passions like attachments and hatred, which can burn us and others, are within us, we have to be in the bondage of the body and in that state we have the feelings of " and mine" (Aham and mamatva) As long as Aham and Mamatva exist in us we cannot attain any spiritual development Those two feelings check spiritual growth. When those two feelings are annihilated our spiritual development begins. If we part with anything with the motive of getting something out of it, it becomes business with profit as its purpose. But if we give anything without expecting any reward, then it brings us moksha. Two great scholars of the city of Mathura were invited to a dinner. Pundits are generally fond of delicious food. Moreover, food obtained free is sweeter than hard-earned food. The two pundits ate SO heavily at the dinner that they could not get up from their seats. The Seth, who was the host, pitied them. He gave them some digestive 132 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #144 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir pills so that they might easily digest the food they had eaten. When the Seth offered them the pills, the pundits said, "But there is no place for these pills in our stomachs. If there was so much space we would have eaten one more sweet each." They were taken to their houses with great difficulty. in their house they smoked qanja because it is believed that ganja-smoking helps digestion. After having smoked ganja they strolled out in the evening. It was a splendid moonlit night. They went to the Ganga with the purpose of sailing on the river in a boat and if possible visiting Gokul. They thought they would enjoy the delight of rowing on the river and that it would also help them to digest the food they had eaten. Both sat in a boat ; kept moving the oars throughout the night. The day dawned. They thought that they had reached Gokul because throughout the night they were rowing the boat. When they saw the commotion and the crowds on the bank they believed that they had reached Gokul. They asked the people there, ''Where are we now?" The They replied, 'Why? You are in Mathura." scholars exclaimed, "What a fun; How can it be ?" The two scholars had been rowing the boat no doubt but they had not released it from the bank where it had been anchored. They had forgotten to release it and in their intoxication, they kept rowing the boat. All their efforts were wasted. Our life also is of the same kind. Our life is a boat, the samsar is the river, moksha is our destination. We keep rowing the boat of our life without releasing it from attachments and hatred with which it is anchored to samsar. All our austerities and endeavours will be futile and fruitless, If we do not discard our attachments and hatred. If we, in our ignorance, remain bound by attachments and hatred and if while we are still in that bondage, 133 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #145 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir we carry out such austerites as Tapa and Japa, all those efforts will be wasteful. Those two are bondages and we are bound by them. We cannot make any real efforts to attain moksha. Whatever endeavours we may make, we cannot progress ven a step on the path of moksha. So speech is the weapon with which we can cut off the bondage of the body and the bondage of samsar. How should we us to speech attain these objectives. USING OUR SPEECH RIGHTLY: Our speech is influenced by our food. If we build a beautiful house, but if the foundation is weak, the house will collapse, Therefore, for anything we should lay a strong foundatian. Purity is the foundation for Dharma. If that foundation is strong the mansion of Dharma will stand solid and unshaken. The mansion of Dharma coliapses, if the mind is shaken by passions. If the mind is not firm, our Dharma also will not be strong and firm. Therefore, how should we speak in life? We should always speak in a brief and pointed manner. Our speech must have brevity and relevance. Silence is the very life of spiritual endeavours. The word muni is obtained from the word maun which means silence. THE SPECIALITY OF A SADHU He who carries out sadhans or endeavours for his own spiritual welfare and that of others is a sadhu. A sadhu is one who is aware of his duty of carrying out Sadhana. A sadhu is one who is not attached to his thoughts and activities and who is above wordly desires. 134 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #146 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir A sadhu must have three great virtues. 1. A sadhu is one who possesses the virtue of tolerance, 2. A sadhu is one who is ready to help others. 3. A sadhu is one who is always ready to extend his Co-operation to others. A sadhu is one who is not daunted by calamities and adversities and who faces them with equanimity. Where there is a reaction, there is a conflict and the samsar arises only from a conflict. When you reach the doors of sadhana on the plane of silence, the voyage inwards will become easy. Then you will not see vices anywhere; on the contrary, you will sea onlyvirtues in everyone. THE VIRTUE OF SPEECH : When Aham (Ego) and Mamatva (attachment) disappear, naturally, your speech acquires purity and sense, and your soul achieves development. 1. The first virtue of speech is brevity. 2. The second virtue is sweetness. Speech should be pleasant. Speech becomes appealing if imbued with love. Where there is sweetness in speech, there is sense in it. The excellence of sense in speech inspires the soul to attain excellence. 3. The third virtue of speech is that it must possess the excellence of sense and wisdom. We will realize what is right and what is wrong if we go deep into the matter. 135 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #147 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir If expeitness is not accompanied with sense, speech may cause spirtual ruin. Where there is sense there is salvation. Till now, you have used your sense and intelligence for the samsar and for your family, but you have not used it for the good of your soul; and for the Paramatma. Dha ma has not appeared in you because you have misused your sense and intelligence. THE PARAMANUS OF THOUGHTS : The Paramanus of thought possess the power of atomic energy. They can destroy karmas. Thought enables you to achieve success in your spiritual endeavours. Thought brings about development or ruin. If a person possessing equanimity falls seriously ill, on account of the effect of some evil karma, he will realise that it is the effect of some evil karma; and will search for a way to reach the Paramatma. He realises that the Vedaniyakarma has arisen; and that it is for his good. He thinks, "To · day, I cannot go out; and this is a punishment imposed on me by karma". Such enlightened people acquire Dharma whereas ignorant people will increase their Karmas. An enlightened man thinks that illness is an enemy; that he should remain calmly at home; and that he should face his illness with equanimity. If the doctor advises him not to take food, he would welcome the suggestion deeming it an opportunity to carry out a fast. If his fever increases he will think that it is the natural effect of karma; and he will carry out a fast. He would deem the karma a benefactor because his illness has been caused by it. There is always a relationship between the causes and the effect. There can be no effect without a cause. Therefore, 136 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #148 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir he would think, "I will spend these days of my illness in meditation. I will meditate upon the Paramatma on the basis of Samyaktva (the right faith) and will attain the plane of Tapa. At that level, I will be able to welcome my karmas. On the plane of worldliness, I cannot welcome them" USING INTELLIGENCE TO DESTROY KARMAS : We should use our intelligence to destroy our karmas and to discard our sins : otherwise our intelligence will be useless. A man does not become a sinner just by committing a sin. It is not action that is important but the motive behind it. If a man entertains sinful thoughts and sinful intentions and motives, he is a greater sinner than the one who commits a sin without intention. Do not use your intelligence in such a way as to cause harm to others. Whatever you say, say it briefly, intelligently and in a pleasant manner. The fourth quality of speech is relevance. We should say only what is relevant. If we keep the doors of our house open, anyone might enter our house. Therefore, we should keep our doors shut. The door of the soul is vast. It has to be shut and locked. You should speak only when it is absolutely necessary; never otherwise. THE DEALINGS OF SPEECH ; If we misuse our speech, we gather sinful karmas which are very cruel and which cause spiritual ruin. If you know ho two speak, you will naturally exercise 137 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #149 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir and it will not cause any restraint upon your speech conflicts. Speak only when it is necessary. The fifth quality of speech is that it should be devoid of the feeling of helplessness. Speech should be dignified not demeaning. There should be a restraint on speech The words uttered by great men reveal their greatness. Speech should be sweet ; not mean or contemptible or demeaning. Even if you are in the worst of adversities, you must show politeness and dignity in your speech. SPEECH DEVOID OF ARROGANCE : Whatever you say, say without arrogance. Self-complacency and arrogance check your progress. They check all your development. In English, the pronoun l' is always a capital letter. One says, "I did this. 1 know this." This makes one arrogant. Ravana was arrogant. Hitler was haughty and Mussolini was eaten up with pride ; and so they caused violence to others and themselves courted disasters. A poet says : Leap high and strut and fret as loudly as you would ; Remember : You will at last become dust and fly through the wood. Naughtiness leads you to ruin. Arrogance never elevated anyone. If you discard your arrogance, your mind will grow 138 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #150 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir pure ; and then you will think of the Vitrag. The tree droops and bends down when its fruits grow plenty and ripe. When politeness appears in the speech of a man, he will become humble. The consequences of arrogance are dreadful. ARROGANCE IS BUT MADNESS : Once the soul was sleeping. It was in danger. Then, the eyes, the ears, the nose, the hands, the legs, the tongue and all the other organs held a meeting. The tongue said, "I am supreme. In my absence, all of you will be helpless, but you don't recognize my importance". The soul, the real master was asleep and every worker in the factory began to claim that he was the managing director. The hands said, "We are supreme; without us you are all helpless. We do work; and we feed you all. The legs said, "No. No. We are supreme. We support all of you." They began to quarrel among themselves; and no one was willing to concede the importance of any other organ. The soul woke up ; and found that every worker was trying to become the master. The workers work ; and the master acquires wealth. Wealth is the result of Punya, or good fortune. None has sway over good fortune ; but people have power over their sins. They can fight against them, and destroy them. 139 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #151 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir PUNYA AND PAP : The sou! said, "Do your respective jobs. Are you drunk ? Have you forgotten that you are workers ?". The eyes have been instructed to see only noble sights, noble men and the Paramatma but what kind of sights do they see? We should hear with our ears spiritual discourses and scriptural recitations and should create in ourselves a spiritual awakening. The benefit that we get from our ears must be used for our spiritual development. It must bring us spiritual serenity. The duty of the tongue is to glorify the Paramatma and the benefit that we get from it must result in our spiritual elevation. Thus, every organ has its allotted duty. But on that day those workers were rebelling against their master. Each had been saying, "I am somebody. I am inferior to none. I too must have POWER'. Because of this kind of egoistic attitude of each organ, there arose a serious dissension among them. At the end the soul said to them, ''What has happened to you? Have some sense and carry out your respective duties. Your welfare lies in helping one another. If you do not take my advice; if you do not love me ; and if you do not carry out my commands, I will go away from you and find some other residence and then you can exercise your power". At once, there was an emergency meeting of the organs. The notice issued by the soul was read out at the meeting. All were present and all began discussing the point in detail. The notice said that if they did not unite in twenty four hours, the soul would leave them and go away. All said, "Ah! If the soul goes away what place can we have in this world? Our arrogance will be burnt or buried": 140 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #152 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Therefore, quarrel again". all said in one voice, "We shall never Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Now, think of the miracle of that notice. Today if the leg is wounded by a thorn, the hand immediately goes to pluck it out, without being asked to do so. The eyes will at once turn towards the wound, and the legs will get rid of the thorn with the help of all the others. The hands and the eyes say, "Our welfare lies in the welfare of the legs". AN UNDERSTANDING OF DHARMA : If you love all jivas, you will attain the Paramatma. The seventh quality of speech is amiability and the eighth quality is that it should be imbued with Dharma. It is indeed difficult to carry out self-scrutiny. If you keep wandering on the shores of the ocean, you may find only stones and shells, but if you want pearls you must dive into the depths of the ocean, braving all dangers. If you wander on the shores of the ocean you enjoy cool breezes but if you want pearls you must discard such desires and plunge into the ocean. In the same manner to know Dharma you should plunge into it and in the ocean of Dharma you will find the pearl of love which will help you to reach the Paramatma. 141 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #153 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir DHARMA BINDU : VII The ideal expounded in the great grantha DharmaBindu is in accordance with the words of the Paramatma. The ideal expounded in it is that everyone should become a Paramatma. Therefore, understand the words of the Paramatma thoroughly and accept them as the guiding light of your life. The man who tries to give all importance to his own opinions is at fault. We must realize that the words of the Paramatma can guide us like a light in the darkness of ignorance. They give us inspiration to achieve elevation; so it is proper that we should adopt them as our guide in our life. If we adore knowledge, the Jnanavaraniya karma gets destroyed in order to attain jnana there is the need for kshayopasbam, a partial pacification. Laghuta, humbleness : Before listening to the words of the Paramatma, we should adore knowledge. After that an invocation is offered to Saraswathi, the goddess of knowledge. You should then salute and honour the spiritual head and then begin hearing his discourse. According to the Indian traditions, according to the Vedic traditions, and according to the traditions of sadhus, first of all an invocation is offered at the commencement of any auspicious spiritual activity. Even writers of great granthas followed this convention. In the beginning they offer an invocation to the Paramatma and seek his aid to 142 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #154 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir this spirit of humility that compose the Grantha. It is paves the way for sublimity. Acharya Shri Haribhadra soori says, "Oh, Paramatma, whatever say in this work is not mine but yours". ATTAINMENT OF MOKSHA : The right faith, the right knowledge and the right conduct constitute the way to moksha. Umaswati has said in the Tatvarthasutra that first of all we should have the right faith in the Paramatma and in his supreme doctrines. They should be accepted with an absolute faith. Next, we should acquire the right knowledge of the tatvas. Thirdly, our conduct must be in consonance with those tatvas and we should pursue the path prescribed by those tatvas. These three gems lead us to moksha. NOBLE CONDUCT : Noble conduct is the most essential factor in life. Why is it so? Jnanachar takes the first place and then the spirit of non-violence attains perfection. If we examine our life in the light of knowledge there will be no possibility of our committing errors. You should not cause agitation to the enlightened people ; nor should you be impolite to them. If you condemn the enlightened people, you will gather a karma wirich will prevent you from acquiring knowledge ; therefore, you should honour and adore the enlightened people. This will make the art of your life beautiful and noble. Somebody may say, "I do not have any knowledge. 143 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #155 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir What shall I do?" If that is so, the Paramatma says, 'Seek the refuge of knowledge'. If even that is not possible, seek light from the enlightened. If you do not have a light or a torch in your hands and if you have to travel in darkness, you must seek the aid of those who have light. If you do not find such a giver of light then you will say, "I will wait for such a guide." Make enquiries and then proceed. If you do not get light at all follow the footprints of enlightened people or pursue the path shown by them. At the beginning of the grantha, there is a statement of the author,, expressive of his humility. A humble invocation in the very first stanza. HUMILITY : "Oh Parmatma ; Oh Vitrag ; I have attained the knowledge of Dharma by your grace and from your supreme commands." Here, the author expresses his humillity and his politeness, Sant Tulsidas says : "We can attain the Parmatma only by means of humility ; but the Paramatma is away, far away from pride and arrogance." The light of the knowledge of ths Parmatma arises from the spirit of humility. Humility aids the development of knowledge. In the present-day life, knowledge has become distor 144 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #156 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra ted. Distortions have appeared in our intellect ; and the cause for all this is the food we consume. If food is pure; then its impact on us will be sublime. Pure knowledge is like pure water. It can quench our thirst which has been with us from time immemorial. Jnanamritam Bhojanam. Knowledge is a sublime fruit like amrit. Knowledge enables us to experience pure delight. "Oh Paramatma ! Whatever I have attained by your grace, I surrender at your feet with faith and devotion". THE WHOLESOMENESS OF FAITH : Logic is not necessary to understand the soul, the supreme soul and such mysteries. Logic is like a large forest. It has no end or boundary. As you walk deeper and deeper into it, you will stumble; and lose your way. You will be lost in utter confusion; and you will fall into despair. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Faith is necessary for it. By means of the endeavours carried out with faith; you will attain perfection; and it requires a total sacrifice from you. Even then, your search may not end. Suppose you want to go to Bombay, you cannot go there without a knowledge of the way. Similarly, you cannot reach Moksha without a knowledge of the way to Moksha. While remaining in samsar you want to reach Moksha. How can you succeed? If you do not possess the fitness, you cannot reach that goal. Even if you can obtain a tiny drop of that limitless ocean of Dharma, your austerities will be meaningful; it will be a blessing to you. and Acharya Haribhadra Soori says: "In this work, I have not spoken out my opinions. This is not my ideology; but it is only a drop from the boundless ocean of Dharma or scriptural knowledge. It is a Dharma Bindu. THE DUTY TO BE CARRIED OUT: If you hear the Dharma Bindu your endeavours will 145 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #157 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir attain perfection. If you come under its impact, you will be liberated from all desires and cravings. To those who are young and inexperienced; who lack intellectual maturity; who have not been initiated into the right modes of conduct; who have not attained the doctrines of the Paramatma and who have not digested them, the Agamas are vast and boundless, but for others in the world they are like a beautiful garden and they also contain guidance regarding the way to travel through that garden. We can get all kinds of things in the garden of scriptures. If you cultivate land for food-grain you will get food grain. But you get grass freely without having to work for it. A HOUSEHOLDER AND A SADHU : The endeavours of a householder bring him worldly prosperity and what a householder cannot get by all this endeavours, a sadhu attains by means of his spiritual endeavours. Both householders and sadhus have to carry out endeavours. A sadhu's sadhana has speed whereas a householder's sadhana is slow. Even a householder can attain moksha but it takes a very long time to attain it. How many years would you take to travel to America in a bullock cart? For such a travel you require a plane : A sadhu renounces everything but a householder renounces worldly things one by one. A householder's movement is slow; therefore, he needs force. A sadhu attains his objectivewithin a few births but a householder has to live through many janmas to attain what a sadhu attains speedily. THE GREATNESS OF SMALL QUANTITIES: A householder can become a sadhu, If that is not possible he must drink the nectar of the Paramatma's doctrines, and if he thus imbibes those doctrines, they will function like small pills. The stanzas in Dharma Bindu are short ones. They are like tiny homeopathic pills ; yet they produce a tremendous effect on the soul. The right 146 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #158 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir conduct is necessary, if the doctrines should produce their effect. If you accept the doctrines with a feeling of absolute self-surrender your soul becomes omniscient. Once, there was a great yogi. Nobody could check the flood of time. Someone came to know that the yogi possessed the philosopher's stone and began following the yogi wherever he went. One day the yogi asked him, "Why do you follow me thus wasting your time and energy? What do you want actually ?" The man said, "Oh you great man ! I am absolutely poor because of my sinful karmas. You have with you the Parasmani. Kindly give it to me and I can attain prosperity by using that stone. Till now, I never mentioned my desire to you, but since now you have asked me why I have been following you, I have told you the truth." That man was once prosperous but now he had become poor on account of his karmas. BENEVOLENCE : A Sadhu is one who is always ready to render help to others. A sadhu is always benevolent. He is always ready to help others. He delivers discourses finding some time in the midst of his scriptural studies and his discourses provide light to people and dispel the darkness of ignorance. The sadhu opened the lid of the container in which he had placed the Parasmani and gave it to the man, saying, "Take it." The man was so greatly delighted that he grew almost mad with joy. He was overwhelmed with joyful emotions. His house had become old and dilapidated. He had in his house a large iron vessel. It had lain in a corner for several years and he put the philosopher's stone into it, brimming with the expectation that the iron vessel would become a gold vessel. But it did not change into a gold vessel. The man felt hopeshattered. He was angry and began shouting that the 147 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #159 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir man who had given it to him was not a sadhu but a rogue. He thought, "If he did not want to give me the rea! philosopher's stone he could have told me frankly; but why this hypocrisy? He has simply fooled me. How dare he deceives me thus? Thinking thus he went straight to the sadhu and began shouting at him furiously. The sadhu said, "Dear friend; I gave you the real Parasmani. I am sure of it, but I suspect that there was something wrong in your way of using it." The man said, "Then, go with me to my house. I will show you how truthful you are." The sadhu accompanied him to his house. The two reached the house and then the man said to the sadhu, "See when I put the philosopher's stone into this vessel, it did not change into gold." The sadhu did not say anything. He got a light and looked into the vessel. He found that there was a lot of rubbish in the vessel and the stone lay on the rubbish. The sadhu said, "How can the stone change the vessel ? First you should have emptied the vessel of rubbish and then put the stone into it. Try this method. You will see the result." WHERE THERE IS ENDEAVOUR THERE IS PERFECTION: First, we should have an objective; secondly, we should endeavour to achieve it and then we attain it. As instructed by the sadhu the man emptied the vessel of all the rubbish and then put the stone into it. soon as the stone touched vessel. As the vessel it became a gold philosopher's stone (a discourse) But if it does not produce the I too give you the for one hour every day right effect in you, what is the cause for the failure? Your mind and soul are filled with rubbish (sins) of countless generations. They are full of passions, attachments and hatred. If you first empty your mind and soul 148 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #160 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir of that rubbish a discourse will produce the right effect on you. The words spoken by me in my discourse touch your body; enter your ears but they do not reach your soul or mind. If they do not touch your soul, it is not the fault of the philosopher's stone. If you you develop the virtue of benevolence, the task of self-realisation becomes easy. If you realise your soul with a genuine faith your bondage with samsar will end. So make yourself fit for that kind of spiritual elevation. HARIBHADRA BHATTA : Dharma Bindu was written by Haribhadra. He was a great Jain acharya who lived about one thousand years ago. He was born in an orthodox Brahmin family. His parents were Shankar Bhatta and Gangadevi. He had mastered the four Vedas. By chance, he met a Jain sadhvi by name Yakin Mahattara and he became a Jain sadhu. His heart began to overflow with compassion for jivas. He composed 1444 great Granthas. His achievement was unexampled. He had studied at Kashi (Benares) ; and had attained an extraordinary level of scholarship. His name and fame spread far and near. When he went to Chitore, the king and the people received him with great honour. The king of Chitore, an ancestor of Rana Pratap Singh was prepared to give his life for the welfare of his people. Haribhadra Bhatta was a native of Chitore. When he returned home, after having completed his studies, the people of the city were overwhelmed with delight. They fell into a mood of jubilation. It was a memorable day in the life of Haribhadra. A certain Jain Shravak who was a cloth-merchant, was a great admirer of Haribhadra. He organised a magnificent reception to Haribhadra and spent all his spare-time in rendering service to him. THE TREASURE-HOUSE OF COMPASSION. Haribhadra was so full of compassion that his heart 149 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #161 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra melted away at the sight of the poor and the indigent. His heart was extremely tender. While he was collecting Gochari, (bhiksha) if he happened to see any poor and hungry man, he used to give away his food to him. What an extraordinary kind of compassfon! The sight of misery filled him with misery. When he went out to collect food (Bhiksha) the Jain shravak used to see that no one was hungry at that time, in the city. He used to get a bell rung at the time; and he used to give food to all hungry people so that Haribhadra might not go without food. At the time when Haribhadra happened to take his food, the merchant got a bell rung. It was an invitation to all poor and destitute people. When they came he offered them food and clothes. He saw that no one remained hungry, in the city, at that time. Such was his devotion for Haribhadra. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Naturally, the words springing from the heart of such a magnanimous, compassionate and noble scholar as Haribhadra ought to be sublime ! His heart abounded in compassion and kindness for all jivas. Dharma Bindu was composed by that scholar, Haribhadra whose heart melted away at the sight of the suffering of others. He says: "You need not enter the Grantha; go into yourself". If we realise his greatness, we naturally develop the highest regard for him. Then, we will realize the sublimity of his utterances; and that realization will lead to an assimilation of those sublime words. ABSORPTION IN LISTENING : You should possess the worthiness of assimilating what you hear. You must listen to such utterances with an unshakeable concentration. Only if you hear those utterances with the deepest concentration can you attain spiritual satisfaction. THE NEED FOR FAITH : You must hear discourses with faith and awareness. 150 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #162 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir How can your soul be freed from the eighteen kinds of derogations ? That will be possible only if you grasp the discourses and develop the spirit of compassion. The virtue and the possessor of the virtue are not different from each other. We become virtuous if we attain sadhu virtues. Familiarity with a should lead to your spiritual purification. A sadhu shows you the right way. He will teach you to be detached in the samsar. He will suggest a method by which you can remain untouched by the samsar, If you take his guidance you can remain in the samsar without being stained by it. Though you may be in a vessel containing collyrium you must remain unstained by it. He will teach you this kind of detachment. If you realise the greatness of Haribhadra and listen to his words that will help you to attain spiritual elevation. This is my auspicious wish! 151 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #163 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra NOBLE ASPIRATION VIII Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Acharya Shri Haribhadra Soori's sublime aspiration was that his endeavours must create in other jivas an awareness of the right objective of life and that other jivas must attain the virtues of amity, felicity and serenity. If all attain that spiritual awareness, they would endeavour to achieve spiritual elevation; otherwise, they would remain in a state of spiritual stupor. If one's spiritual endeavours do not inspire others to carry out similar spiritual endeavours, they would be futile. We shall give here an account of the life of Haribhadrasoori, the author of Dharma Bindu. How did he become a great sadhak and how did he attain such a sublime level of spiritual perfection? What kind of contemplations impelled him to attain that perfection? How sublime was his mental state? Know this and understand this only then will you develop faith in him; only then will you take interest in his grantha and only then will yov entertain the desire to hear discourses. HARIBHADRA BHATTA : Haribhadra Bhatta was very haughty and arrogant, This very arrogance led him to enlightenment. Though a man may have many great qualities, if he has one weakness or flaw, it can cause his ruin. In the same manner, if a man has many vices but if he has one virtue, it can redeem him and help him to achieve spiritual progress. Even a single virtue will save us from a disaster. For Private And Personal Use Only Page #164 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir HARIBHADRA'S VOW : Haribhadra had taken a vow. He declared, "If I cannot understand anything I will become a disciple of the person who enlightens me. There is nothing that that I cannot understand and there is nothing that I have not understood and mastered". Because he was arrogant, he had lost his wits and had forgotten his soul. FOR THE SAKE OF SAFETY : One day, he happened to be travelling along a road, sitting in a palanquin. Just at that time, a mad elephant came ravaging the roads and dashing down people. People began running helter-skelter. The whole area became desolate. Even the bearers of the palanquin ran away to save their lives. While running away, they told him to run into some place of refuge. Haribhadra came out of the palanquin and looked for a shelter. There was no time even to think because the mad elephant was coming down the road furiously. A Jin temple stood nearby and he ran into the temple for shelter. There, he saw the image of the Jin and he made fun of the image saying, "Oh lord ! Your body which is so well-built and sturdy shows that you have eaten excellent food because when there is fire at the roots, the tree cannot be green. So also when a man is hungry he cannot be hefty". RIDICULING THE LORD : Haribhadra could not understand the greatness of Vitrag, hence he said, "You have such a strong and well-built body. Can a sadhu who carries out severe penances possess such a body ?'' That great scholar did not realise that if a person carries out severe penances, he attains spiritual felicity by virtue of which his body and mind remain strong and stolid. Tapa gives internal energy. Only the tree that stands in the hot sunshine can be green and flourishing. It obtains its nourishment from the 153 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #165 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra depths of the earth and so it remains green and flourishing. THE INNER ENERGY : Sadhus and saints attain energy from their souls; therefore they do not look weak or tired at any time. They always remain cheerful but a householder acquires energy from outside which becomes exhausted soon and so he looks weak and tired. He looks cheerful and well only when he has taken food Aham plays its role As long as we have that vice of Aham (egoism) we experience delight only in the enjoyment of physical pleasures. When a man is in this condition, he cannot realize the strength of his soul THE ONE SIDED VISION (EKANT): Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir On account of the Ekant or the one-sided vision, controversies and conflicts arise and they may lead to such vices as falsehood and violence. In the case of people who adopt the Ekant point of view, their minds will not be pure and perfect. But if we acquire the habit of looking at things from the Anekant point of view, all conflicts cease. That view is pure and perfect and helps us to see the truth If we use both the lenses, the plus and the minus lenses we will attain the power of seeing things as they are ; and there will be no wrong understanding or dissensions. A CONFLICT : Once there arose a conflict between two thinkers. The traditions of both had their roots in the Aryan culture. But each insisted that his own theories were sound. One asserted that all things are momentary. He argued : "All things are momentary. All things are perishable. Change is taking place every moment. There is no substance which does not perish every moment" On account of such arguments, such scholars are called 154 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #166 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir nihilists or believers in transcience. The other scholar asserted that all things were permanent. He argued, "The Paramatma is indestructible. No substance really perishes in this universe'. Thus a heated controversy arose between the two scholars. MAHAVEER'S ANEKANTHVAD : Mahaveer completely eliminated this kind of controversy arising from ideologies based on the one-sided approach to reality. Mahaveer gave his solution thus If such ideological differences and dissensions arise Dharma will get destroyed and the future will become dismal and dreadful. Therefore, Mahaveer expounded his theory thus basing it on the Anekantvad or the multidimensional approach to reality. He declared that both the predications were right. In the Tatvaratha Sutra we get this Tatva “Nityamva Anityamva". This composite theory comprises both the theories and amalagmates them into a single comprehensive thesry. Both the theories are included philosophically in this doctrine, "Utpada (production). Vyayam (destruction), Drauvyam (permanence in the form of substance)". These three words contain the supreme truth Mahaveer's utterances are based on Syadvad-Anekantvad. Mahaveer said, "Everything is produced; everything gets destroyed and everything remains permanent in its original Drauvya form. These three qualities are present in everything." We can take the example of a gold ring. It can be melted and made into a chain. The chain can be melted and fashioned into bangles. These things lose their modified forms. But the original substance gold remains the same. If one form is destroyed the same substance assumes another form. In the same manner in this universe every object is produced; and countless manifestations may appear but the original substance remains the same. The substances are produced by a combination of Paramanus. The modified forms pass through the phases 155 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #167 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra of destruction and production but the substance remains the same; only its forms pass through the phases of destruction and production but the substance remains the same; only its form keeps changing. The paryaya or the modified form is transient, momentary and perishable. The substance is permanent, imperishable and lasting. The doctrine, "All things are permanent' is true. The paramanus are permanent and imperishable. The other doctrine that all things are momentary also is true. Both the doctrines are true. Birth implies death at one time or the other. So, if there is production, there should be destruction. Paramanus are indestructible. Lord Mahaveer thus expounded his theory amalgamating the two theories. This is Anekantvad. In this approach, there is no dogmatism or clinging to any particular theory. INTELLIGENCE AND INSISTENCE: Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir You will get peace of mind, if you can also amalgamate your intelligence with your contemplations. You will realize the truth and attain Samadhi, a state of spiritual felicity. If you eat food in a mood of calmness and peace, it will give you satisfaction and delight. If you eat food hurriedly in a mood of mental agitation, you cannot digest it. In the same manner, since knowledge is food in a way, you must acquire it when you are calm, peaceful and cheerful; otherwise, you will not be able to assimilate it. Doctrines have to be preached in such a way that they are understood by all the members of the congregation. Hence, there is the need for repetition. Sometimes, the speaker has to adopt different methods to explain the doctrines. THE ANEKANTVAD: If you approach the truth from the one-sided point of view, (Ekanthvad) conflicts arise. If you stick to one meaning or one word, conflicts and controversies appear. 156 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #168 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Such an approach lacks life and vitality. You will get a composite and comprehensive knowledge if you adopt the Anekantvad as your approach to reality. You will get a proper answer if you understand the various implications of a word or an utterance as seen from various points of view. If you adopt the Agekant point of view, there will arise in you such virtues as compassion, amity, love and neutrality. It is amity that helps us to realise and practise Dharma. Where there is amity, there abides the Paramatma. This is the result of a comprehensive vision, if we adopt that view, the samsar becomes imbued with Dharma. Bhagwan Mahaveer said, "Truth is one ; but it is called by different names." INCOMPLETE KNOWLEDGE ; To-day our knowledge is incomplete. People ignore the knowledge of the soul and seek the knowledge of the externals only. They depend on borrowed knowledge. Their knowledge is comparabie, to water in a tank. If the tank is kept open, the water evaporates; and if it is closed, the water becomes foul. The present-day knowledge is like water obtained from a small water-tank. It is borrowed knowledge but not acquired knowledge. If you use it for outward purposes like an examination, the tank becomes empty; and if you keep it in your mind, it rots and produces foul smell, and causes distortions. Those who think they are perfect are egoistic. Knowledge is boundless in order to dig a well, deep-drilling is necessary. Only if you dig deep can you get at the threads of gold in the depths of the earth. Only if you carry out austere endeavours can you attain serenity; and those felicitous waters will give you satisfaction every day. The knowledge that lies in the depths of the soul is the knowledge of the inner self. That will give you deep satisfaction. THE THEORY OF RELATIVITY : To-day, in political philosophy, there is the need for 157 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #169 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Sapekshavad. If that approach is not adopted conflicts would arise. Ekantvad is harmful. It brings about various kinds of conflicts. The Ekantvad is a kind of malady; and the Anekantvad is a remedy to it. The entire philosophy of Mahaveer is based on Anekantvad or Sapekshavad or Syadvad. You are one individual ; but you can be understood or seen from different points of view. You are father in the eyes of your sons: a son, in the eyes of your father, a brother in the eyes of your brothers; and uncle in the eyes of your nephews; and thus you can be husband in the eyes of your wife ; and so on. See how many ways there are of seeing you. In such a case, if you stick to the Ekantvad, conflicts will arise. HAR!BHADRA'S STORY Haribhadra Bhatta remarked on seeing the image of the Jin: "People say that you are a great Tapasvi ; but when I look at your body I get the idea that you must have eaten excellent and nourishing food. They say that you are the very embodiment of tenderness and serenity. All this is definitely untrue'. He was so impolite but he had one virtue. If one Irght is burning it can kindle thousands of lamps. If there is one virtue in a man, it brings about countless virtues. Light is obtained from light. PLAINNESS : One evening, Haribhadra Bhatta happened to be going on the road. At that time, some sadhvis were reciting some Shlokas in a nearby upashraya. One shloka contained the word Chakki because a reference was made in the shloka to Vasudev and Chakravarti. Hence, the word Chakki occurred repeatedly in it. Haribhadra Bhatta heard it ; and could not understand it. He said derisively, "The Sadhvi is repeating the word Chakki", The head of the Sadhvis was Yakini Mahattara. She 158 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #170 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir and her disciples were at that time deeply absorbed in scriptural studies, Haribhadra Bhatta; though he was a great Sanskrit scholar could not understand the meaning of that shloka which was in Prakrit. So, he made fun of her asking her why she was thoughtlessly repeating the word, Chakki He went up to her and asked her what the stanza meant. She advised him to approach her Gurudev and to seek a clarification from him. Thus, she showed her politeness and discipline. Haribhadra Bhatta approached the Gurudev and asked him what the shloka actually meant. The Gurudev explained it to him, to his satisfaction. Then, Haribhadra Bhatta said, "I took a vow declaring that I would become the disciple of anyone who could explain to me what I could not understand Today, you have explained to me the meaning of this shloka. So, according to my vow I am your disciple now. I surrender myself at your feet". Yakini Mahattara, the great Sadhvi did not explain it to him because she did not like to transgress the limits of the life of a Sadhvi, That was why she advised him to approach the Gurumaharaj. THE TRANSFORMATION Haribhadra Bhatta approached the Gurudev with a genuine desire for knowledge. He was a man of great genius and outstanding scholarship. He also possessed extraordinary intellectual incisiveness. He realised the significance of the Anekant point of view. He became a sadhu, receiving deeksha from that spiritual head. Renouncing his position and status as court-priest, he became a Jain sadhu. After that one day when he saw the image of the Paramatma he glorified the Paramatma ; expressed his deep repentance by shedding tears; and said, ''On Lord ; Your image inspires in the beholders the spirit of renunciation. Once I derided you. I deeply regret my words. Haribhadra added, "O you Vitrag. Your eyes are full of peace. Your body is strong because it acquires 159 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #171 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir strength from your soul. You are great. You do not touch with your hands weapons or women or wealth." Familiarity with the enlightened leads to the destruction of one's karmas. After he became Haribhadra Soori, that is, an acharya, he composed 1444 orginal granthas. What a tremendous scholarship ; Dharma Bindu was composed by him. In the Pratikraman, he is remembered. and his shloka is recited. We say, "The samsar is like a fire. We would like to discard it. We remember your sacred name because it can extinguish, the fire of samsar." At the end, we say ANYATHA SHARANAM NASTHI. THVAMEVA SHARNAM MAMA. (I have no other refuge; only you are my refuge) Haribhadra Soori did not forget the benefaction of that great Sadhvi. He adopted her as his spiritual mother. His works are prescribed as textbooks in some western universities as well as in Indian universities. He ended his earthly existence in 581 Vikrama Era. There is some difference of opinion regarding his date and time. THE DEDICATION : He committed a mistake once but he repented it throughout his life. The Sadhvi who helped him to discard his pride was Yakini Mahattara. By way of expressing his gratitude for the benefaction she had bestowed upon him, he mentioned at the end of every work of his, "This work has been composed by the spiritual son of Yakini Mahattara". Thus he became humble. In the beginning of every grantha written by him, he offers a humble prayer to the Supreme One, the Arihant. ARIHANT : When we say Namo Arihantanam, this expression Namo is a way to enter the soul. To whom, do we offer a salutation in reciting this line? Who is Arihant? All such beings of the past, or the future or the presentare saluted in it. Here, there is no narrowness of outlook. 160 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #172 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir All jivas who have attained that level are saluted and honoured. Our austerities attain purity, if our hearts abound in amity, compassion, love and neutrality. If we acquire these virtues, we will be worthy of the status of the Paramatma, and we will attain it. Here, we have spiritual democracy in the sense that all can attain that status. POLITENESS : If you acquire the quality of politenss, you will easily understand the secrets of Dharma. The first and toremost lesson of culture is to offer respect to others and to greet them with a salute. In the first chapter of the Uttaradhyayana Sutra politeness is described as the right means to attain Moksha. Ravana, also possessed politeness though he had many vices. He had also many great virtues. So, he attained Moksha. There is no difference between Shri Ram and Mahavir. We believe that Shri Ram was a Siddha. Mahavir is a Siddha. We say, ''Namo Siddhanam'. So it means that we also salute Shri Ram when we say it. Shri Ram is a Siddha; and Mahavir is a Siddha. They are equal as siddhas. The word Namah is the gateway to enter the soul. Only after we enter the soul can we realize the Paramatma. Therefore Namo takes the first place; and then the expression, Paramatma appears. Sometimes Namah is placed next to the name of the dielity saluted; but in the Jain mantra "Namo'' appears first. We say "Namo Aribantanam; Namo Siddhanam' The Thirthankars do not give us Moksha. They show us the way to Moksha. The Namaskara helps both men and women to cross the ocean of Samsar. The very attitude implied in Namaskar leads them to the supreme state. That lofty attitude arises in us when we utter the word Namah. The Namaskar that is offered with devotion enables us to become Paramatmas. 161 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #173 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir The endeavour to attain spiritual perfection begins with the austerity of offering a salutation. When Ravana was on his death-bed, Shri Rama said to Lakshman, "Ravana is a great scholar. He is highly enlightened. He has mastered many Vidyas (accomplishments). He is a treasure house of knowledge and is going to be a Thirthankar. Go to him and learn from him all that you wish to learn". A person may have some vices but in that matter, he depends on Karmas. If we can attain the lofty thoughts that Lakshman entertained, it would be a great blessing to us. Lakshman approached Ravana and sat at his head. Ravana saw him; and realised that he had approached him as a friend. He asked Lakshman, "Dear sir, what is the purpose of your visit to me?". Lakshman replied, "I have approached you in accordance with the commands of Shri Ram, my elder brother. He commanded me to approach you and to seek knowledge from you". Ravana glanced at him, and said, "Lakshman ! you are unfit to be taught". Lakshman thought that this was a great disgrace to him. He felt greatly insulted. He thought, "Have I come to be insulted thus? Has my brother sent me here to be insulted thus by Ravan ?" Angrily, he returned to Shri Ram. Shri Ram asked him, "What have you learnt from Ravan ?". Lakshman replied, "What can I learn from him? When I went to him, he insulted me saying that I was unfit to be taught by him". Shri Ram felt certain that Ravana would not have behaved thus. He thought a little and asked Lakshmana After approaching Ravan, where did you take your seat ?" Lakshman replied, "I sat near his head''. "Enough", said Shri Ram. "Your conduct made him feel that you were unfit to learn anything from him. You did not show politeness. You did not behave in a sensible and obedient manner. Where there is no politeness, there can be no learning". 162 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #174 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Lakshman, after realizing the value of politeness, approached Ravana again ; saluted him politely; and sat at his feet. Then, Ravana taught him all that he knew about polity and administration and Shastras. Where there is politeness, there is fruitfulness. 163 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #175 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra PLAINNESS rities. IX Acharya Shri Haribhadra Soori has described the way to Moksha. First, he describes the nature of the soul. From what he says in his grantha, we can get a deep knowledge of the soul. He has given an ordinary description. We get a special knowledge of the soul. He has given that description with the purpose of making us realize ourselves and awakening our souls. By offering an invocation at the beginning, he has shown politeness and humbleness. He wanted to explain the nature of Dharma and the soul and in order pound his theories, the great Acharya has shown politeness and humbleness. to ex Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir If there is politeness, in a man, he finds it easy to gain access to the soul. Where there is no politeness, there can be no spiritual achievement. When we pass a thread into the eye of a needle, the thread should be straight and pointed. If there is any knot in it, it will not pass through the eye of the needle. In the same manner, a soul which is plain and pure enters Dharma easily. If there are any distortions like anger, selfishness and the other Kashayas they will produce poisonous attitudes in the mind and the soul which comes under the impact of that poison cannot enter Dharma. Only if the soul is pure and perfect can it enter Dharma. Plainness is an absolute necessity in spiritual auste Plainness or simplicity is essential if our endeavours for spiritual perfection should attain fruitfulness. Simplicity brings about sanctity in the soul. Where there is sanctity For Private And Personal Use Only Page #176 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir there will appear perfection and thus the endeavour to attain the Paramatma will be fruitful. This spiritual attain. ment brings an extraordinary satisfaction. Thish itself is perfection. CREATION : It the soul is satisfied with this world and with the passions and pleasures of the samsar, it cannot begin any spiritual activity. If we treat the world as totally unimpor. tant, the soul is created. That means, spiritual realisation takes place. The man who is satisfied with the external world cannot attain any internal satisfaction. When all worldly thoughts cease; when all words grow silent, true dharma arises in the soul. That means, dharma arises in the soul when all the sensual desires disappear and when all words and worldly thoughts disappear. WHAT REMAINS IS THE DHARMA : Then the soul visualizes and realises its virtues ; faith and pure knowledge arise naturally and spontaneously. A man is said to have attained Samyag Jnan when he is free from all distortions and when by means of knowledge, he can realise the virtues of the soul. Samyag Charitra is outward conduct which is in perfect consonance with that spiritual realisation. SPIRITUAL AWAKENING : The nature of the soul is to consume spiritual food but the soul does not get its food from outside ; it gets its food from inside, from internal spiritual austerities, It acquires infinite strength and infinite vitality in a simple and natural manner. When our external Dharma is awakened, the spiritual Dharma gets firmly established and in that state, the soul keeps off ignoble thoughts. THE RELATIONSHIP OF DHARMA : Till now, you have been living ignobly under the name 165 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #177 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir of Dharma and in the name of Dharma, you have also been fighting battles. In some situations, this kind of fight for Dharma brought disgrace to history and stained life. In the course of the centuries, many wars were fought in the name of Dharma. Ignobility has been perpetrated under the name of Dharma and this has stained life. Does Karma teach us to fight for it? Dharma preaches unity. When that is so how can it inspire disunity and hostilities among people ? Hostilities and animosities are not sanctioned by Dharma. He who commits an offence or a sin to attain the Paramatma distorts Dharma. Man has attained this state of existence by good fortune and by the grace of the Paramatma but he misuses his body fighting wars and seeking physical pleasures under the belief that the whole world belongs to him. SELF-SCRUTINY : The knowledge that people get by posing questions for their own satisfaction is natural and satisfying. Dharma means using our knowledge to reach our souls and to realize them. Dharma means living in accordance with the principles of Dharma. We cannot attain spiritual prosperity from outside. From outside we can get only inspiration to carry out spiritual endeavours. We understand the nature of spiritual endeavours by carrying them out with devotion. If you want to reach your goal, you yourself should traverse the path leading to it. If others reach the goal, it does not mean that you have reached the goal. If we want to eat food, we should eat it ourselves. If others eat food our hunger cannot be satisfied. If you yourself carry out spiritual endeavours, you will attain satisfaction. If you yourself carry out your pilgrimage you will reach your destination. Dharma will be meaningful and fruitful if your spiritual endeavours are carried out with a genuine devotion and 166 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #178 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir if you carry them out in a state of spiritual awareness Those who carry out spiritual activities just for a show will not get anything. That will be a parody of dharma ; not real dharma. If your endeavours are not genuine they will not lead you to your goal. THE CLARITY OF FEARLESSNESS : lion. If you approach the Paramatma with any fear in your heart you cannot get the gift of fearlessness from him. First, discard all your fears and then approach the Paramatma. If you do so you will get the gift of fearlessness from the Paramatma. You should not conceal anything at anytime from the Paramatma. If you conceal your disease from your docfor, your disease cannot be cured. If you conceal facts from your lawyer, you cannot win your case, If you do not discard your fear and confess your sins before the Paramatma, you will not be worthy of his grace. You cannot attain spiritual perfection. A young boy is helpless. He has no other means except shedding tears to express the idea that he is suffering from fever. He has only that means. He reveals his heart through tears. The Paramatma's heart abounds in love. If your approach the Paramatma with tearful eyes like a child and if you say, "O, Lord!", the Lord will say, "Renounce this samsar", but you may not be worthy of his grace He will also say, "Discard your sensual desires, and discard your anger''. You may find that it is difficult to carry out those precepts, and if you say, "O, Lord! I am helpless and so I have come to you. You kindly save me from these entanglements. I am sure that I can get rid of samsar by your grace" you will attain your objective. If you offer a prayer to the Paramatma thus with 167 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #179 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir heartfelt devotion you will attain your objective. You will attain spiritual progress but you lack faith, trust and plainness. DHARMA FOR LEISURE : Dharma should not be a matter of exhibition. it should not be carried out for show. Dharma is related to internal purity. It must bring us Moksha. It must help us to achieve spiritual elevation. Mere observance without internal purity is of no use. Dharma bestows upon us peace and felicity. It frees us from agitations and anguish. If we carry out Dharma properly, it satisfies our spiritual aspirations. It makes us worthy of Moksha. Great Rishis and Munis renounced the samsar. Why did they do so? Why did Shri Ram have to go to the forests? Mahaveer renounced his Kingdom. One cannot attain Sidhi unless one has experienced the fruits of one's Karmas. The fruits of Karmas have to be experienced to attain perfection. Karmas are gathered by the soul in its state of ignorance and the destruction of Karmas is called Karmanirjara. The soul cannot become pure unless the Karmas are burnt away in the fires of Tapas. This is the only plane on which we can proceed towards Moksha. Dharma must help us to achieve spiritual elevation ; otherwise, it is not useful. You should not think that you are doing everything, but you should always contemplate on the commands of the Paramatma; and you must assimilate them. Truth needs no advertisement. Gold is precious and can be sold at once anywhere at anytime. The words of Vitarag are true. They will remain permanent. 168 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #180 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir We should accept a doctrine after examining its validity. We should see whether a doctrine can lead us to Moksha. TWO KINDS OF DHARMA : Acharya Sri Haribhadra Suri has described two kinds of Dharma. One is the Grihasta Dharma. It is related to the life of a householder in the samsar. How can a man attain the spirit of renunciation while living in the Samsar as a householder? How can a man be a sanyasi while he is living in the samsar? The Grihasta dharma as expounded by Haribhadra Suri shows itself in our dayto-day life. The simplicity of life itself is Sadhuta. First he describes the Gribasta dharma, which is of two kinds. (1) The ordinary grihasta dharma, and (2) The special grihasta dharma. The ordinary grihasta dharma relates to the day-to-day life of a man. It tells us how to make our life simple and pure. If people follow it, their health will be sound, their thoughts will be exalted, their conduct will be noble and their activities will be upright. The special Grihasta dharma comprising such principles as self-restraint and carrying out of special vows and austerities liberates the soul from its maladies. This requires a definitely determined spiritual objective. CONCENTRATION : Supposing you set off to Bombay with one lakh rupees in your purse ; you have to travel throughout the night. In such a situation, again and again, your mind keeps moving towards the purse because you fear that the purse may be stolen. Similarly, in the sphere of Dharma your mind has to keep thinking repeatedly of the Paramatma and of your soul, because your soul is a precious possession. In samsar you are attached to your house, your shop and your other possessions, but your mind must keep thinking of your 169 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #181 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir soul If your mind gets concentrated on your soul that will give you mental and spiritual firmness. The special grihasta dharma describes the satras that enable you to realise the supreme tatva. Sutras may be brief and epigrammatic but they contain profound ideas. They reveal to us the broad view of Dharma. If our life attains the level of ordinary purification, it will be easy for us to realise the special meaning of Dharma. DHARMA IS EVERYTHING In the absence of Dharma, the soul cannot attain any elevation. A clock cannot work if it is not wound. So also the soul cannot function properly if it is not propelled by Dharma. You may have an excellent car, but if there is no petrol in it, it is of no use. It will remain motionless. There may be a beautiful flc wer but if it lacks fragrance it will be useless. You may have an excellent stove, but if you do not have fuel the stove is useless. Similarly, without Dharma your soul will be helpless and cannot achieve any elevation. The enlightened people say that just as your body requires food, your soul requires Dharma for its progress. Dharma is the food of the soul. It is Dharma that gives movement to the soul. It gives the necessary energy to the soul. Dharma inspires in the soul a natural and spontaneous activity. A FAULTLESS LIFE : (1) in your life as a householder, you should not do anything that brings disgrace to your family. You should not commit such sins as theft, robbery, uttering falsehood, deceiving others and causing violence to others. (2) You must lead your life on the plane of truth and ethical excellence. It is said in all scriptures that only truth leads you to the highest state of existence. 170 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #182 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir In the Jain Darshan, it is said that a householder must earn money only by lawful and righteous means. You must earn money by lawful and honest means ; not by dishonest or deceptive means. The wealth that vou earn by dishonest or unlawful means will not bring you peace or happiness. Such wealth causes agitations and inspires ignoble thoughts; and brings you only calamities. It inspires in you ignoble propensities. Therefore, the first and foremost thing is that your actions and conduct should be pure and noble. Of course, as a householder, you have to earn money, for your livelihood and to support the members of your family. Even while you are in samsar, you should remain untouched by it like a lotus in water, Only then can you cross the ocean of samsar. LIFE ALSO A DRAMA : You should realize that life is a drama. The world is a stage ; and we are all merely actors playing our roles. We should not mistake a drama for reality. We should remain untouched by the evils of samsar. If someone acts ignobly you should realize that in his life some evil Karma has emerged to the surface. Even if your house and shop are burnt away, you should remain calm. You must always retain your equanimity. Remember always that you are playing a role in the drama of life. The wealth that is earned lawfully brings you peace and happiness and inspires sublime thoughts in the members of your family. When Dharma impels the soul to wake up, you attain perfection. 171 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #183 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra A COMMENTARY ON QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS: X Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir The great benefactor, Acharya Shri Haribhadra Soori has described Dharma in his great work, Dharma Bindu. He has defined Dharma: and he has described the path of Dharma. Dharma is not a tradition. Lord Mahavir has not given us a package containing the Paramatma, but he has described how every soul, by its own endeavours can become a Paramatma. You must adopt the attitude of amity towards all jivas. Mahavir never said this. "You adopt only my Dharma". He has not prescribed any restrictions. The essential thing in Dharma is that you should discard all your sensual and worldly desires. Mahavir gave the world light by means of his own Sadhana (spiritual endeavours). He has shown the way by pursuing which all can attain Moksha. But you yourself have to traverse the path. Moksha cannot be given to anyone as a gift. Everyone has to attain Moksha by his own endeavours. If you try to walk using the legs of others, you cannot reach your destination. From the example of the Paramatma you can realize how you can attain spiritual perfection by means of your own endeavours. The Paramatma abides within us. We should acquire spiritual vision to visualize him. If we attain that vision, no problems remain before us. As long as we are blind; and as long as we are in the darkness of For Private And Personal Use Only Page #184 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir ignorance, we cannot see the brightness of light; and when we are in the dark, we entertain doubts and suspicions, and problems keep cropping up again and again. But as soon as our mental eyes are opened, all our distortions will disappear. After that there will be no eagerness or desire to know anything because the truth will be revealed to us when we attain spiritual awakening. What we see with our mental eyes, we see clearly and naturally; and then all our questions are fully answered By means of discourses we have to enable you to open your mental eyes. With your mental eyes you can visualize the Paramatma lying latent in you. If you open your mental eyes, you will see what you want to see, If you open your mental eyes you can see in yourself the Samskara or the impulses of countless lives. But you have to put forth hard endeavours to attain that vision. The value of our endeavours lies in our being able to see what is not ordinarily perceptible. We should endeavour to perceive what is not directly perceptible, it is wrong to try to see only what is directly visible. We should endeavour to acquire the essentials of Dharma which are not perceptible. It is futile and fruitless to endeavour to acquire what is perishable and transitory. We should, on the contrary, try to realize what lies in us. Instead of doing so, people waste their energy in trying to get external objects. Look into your kitchen. There you will see that the ceiling and the walls are black. Their beauty is eclipsed. In the blackness of smoke, nothing is visible. In the same manner, your soul and your intellect have been blacknened by the smoke of sensuality and the flames of passions like attachment and hatred. Your intelligence is like a light burning in a lantern blackened by smoke. The beauty of your sout has been eclipsed. If you do not wash your vessels for some days, they become rusty and stained. In the same manner, if you do not cleanse your soul by means of austerities, it becomes stained with Karmas. 173 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #185 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir in order to safeguard the beauty of your soul, pacify your passions. That is the diet-restriction for your spiritual maladies. It is a medicine to cure your thoughts of their ignobility; and it gives you the power of tolerance. Man's nature is to ask questions about the things he does not know. On the plane of silence, there is no need for words. I have only been endeavouring to lead you on to the plane of silence. The sublime lies concealed in your soul. All things lie in us. If we know ourselves, we will know all. He who knows all realizes the soul You do not need the Paramatma to know yourself ; but you need Dharma to know yourself. Some may say, "We do not need Moksha now (at present)". But realize this truth. If the present is bright, the future also will be bright. But people are always steeped in the past. We should discard the dead wood of the past which gives us no delight. Mental agitations and distortions are caused by the past. They should be discarded. If you think of the future and feel that you will achieve your worldly objectives, you will not be able to reach your destination. It is not desirable that you should keep wandering in the samsar aimlessly. If a man thinks of the present, his existence will be meaningful. Only he who lives in the present according to Dharma, can reach his goal. Dharma teaches you the way in which you can cross the ocean of samsar. Do not be lost in the tangles of untruth and falsehood. We can attain pure knowledge by trying to attain self-realization. When a man once realizes his own duty, he does not care to think of the beauty of the external objects. He will not keep wandering through the samsar, like a beggar. He will not have the desire to continue to live in this samsar. He would listen to the music of his soul and would not hear the disturbing noises of the external world. 174 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #186 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir My task is to lead you from the external world into the internal world and to impel you to travel inwards. When you turn your eyes inwards your thoughts and actions will become exalted. Where there is such an exaltation there will be sanctity. When once the soul attains sanctity, it will begin pursuing the path of perfection and it will attain its supreme objective of reaching the Paramatma. If you do not ask your questions seriously and sincerely, they will be futile. Asking such questions is mere exhibitionism. Those who have a genuine desire to acquire knowledge can approach me. But your questions must be your own arising from the depths of your own mind. You must attempt to seek knowledge. You must endeavour to know yourself. You should not come here to test me and you should not also ask me questions which are not your own and which you have gathered from elsewhere. They lack sense and relevance. I feel happy when you come to me with your questions, but if you come to me without reason, I wish to keep aloof from you. The life of a sadhu is different from that of a househoider. What is a merit according to me, may be a defect in your eyes. A sadhu cannot have much familiarity with householders. Too much familiarity with householders causes decline in our life. The life of a sadhu will be fruitfuj when he can exercise a control over himself. There are five great vows (mahavratas) which elevate and sanctify the life of a sadhu. Those vows enable a sadhu to achieve spiritual progress. There are five factors which bring about a degeneration in the life of a sadhu. They are (1) delivering discourses (2) intimacy with householders (3) newspapers (4) fame and (5) flattery. The act of delivering discourses is harmful to a sadhu ; it brings about egoism and other mental distortions. Familiarity with householders is not desirable for sadhus. That is desirable for householders. 175 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #187 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra of T. B How does a doctor move about in a ward patients? How does he conduct himself there ? When a doctor goes into such a ward he is extremely cautious because he can contact T. B. even by breathing in the contaminated air. He covers his mouth and nostrils with a cloth while treating T. B. patients. Soon after he comes out he washes his hands with disinfectants. He does not go into the ward unnecessarily or repeatedly. He goes there only when his presence there is absolutely necessary. Of course, he has sympathy for the patients but fearing contamination, he keeps away from them. The same is the case with sadhus. The devotees that come to the upashraya are like patients, while the sadhu is a doctor. Passions and sensual cravings are like T. B. A sadhu keeps away from householders but he gives them spiritual guidance through his discourses. If you can become spiritually transformed by the impact of our discourses, it will give us great joy and we congratulate you upon your achievement but if we listen to your discourses, we may become transformed; so we keep off householders. Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir newspapers Every one desires respect and praise. Newspapers are also harmful to sadhus. If sadhus read newspapers, that would be a waste of their precious time which they should devote to scriptual studies. Moreover, reading distortions and magazines may bring about and aberrations in sadhus and then there arises in their minds a desire for fame. Flattery causes degeneration in them. If one cannot digest flattery one would vomit it. These five are scrious impediments on the path of sadhus. If your questions are sincere and serious, I can give you satisfactory answers. I cannot waste my time answering irrelevant questions. When I have renounced the samsar why should I think of it, A sadhu must always endeavour to attain self-realization; otherwise, his life will be futile and pointless. If you silently carry out endeavours Paramatma you will attain your objective. 176 For Private And Personal Use Only to attain the That requires Page #188 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir renunciation, only then can you reach that goal. But from time immemorial, the samsar has been moving in such a direction that nobody asks himself, ,Who am !" but everyone always tries to show off his own wealth or knowledge. The knowledge of people also becomes distorted by wordliness. That distortion destroys all the energy of man. What kind of attitude should one possess? A man must possess the right knowledge, the right faith and the right conduct. The word 'right' is repeatedly used to suggest that knowledge should not be distorted. If you misuse your knowledge, it causes spiritual decline For instance, the scientists who made the atomic bomb did not lack sense or intelligence ; but they used their knowledge and intelligence for a wrong purpose. Therefore, there should be a restraint on knowledge and its use. The American scientists made nuclear weapons and exploded them in Japan. They exploded them over the cities of Nagasaki and Hiroshima. The explosion killed thousands and maimed large massess of human beings. Those who lack a humanitarian attitude cause desruction using their intelligence. They have intelligence and knowledge but they misuse them. Inspite of our great advances in the sphere of science, we are still unscientific and superstitious. We do not use our sense and intelligence properly. If people used their sense and intelligence properly they would have enjoyed heaven upon earth. Mahaveer condemned superstition. If people walk in the darkness of superstition, they will not be able to reach their goal. So, they require the right knowledge. 177 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #189 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir When a man acquires the right vision and the right light, he develops the right spiritual attitude which will lead him towards his perfection. The soul need not be always subjected to the effect of karmas ; but in the state of ignorance, the soul gathers karmas. Discard your superstitions and realize your soul, The expression “Michcbami Dukadam” reveals a man's anguish at his own actions and his heartfelt repentance. But the very people who utter this expression with apparent piety really worship wealth. They want to acquire more and more wealth and their piety at the temple and the upashraya is perfunctory and formal, not genuine and real. As T. S. Eliot says, these are hollow men and their austerities are devoid of significance. How can people attain the Paramatma when they act thus contrary to the commands of the Paramatma ? Therefore, 'Oh people!' Use your inteliigence properly. Always act nobly even if you have to die for ii. Benevolence is a great virtue. You must think nobly and act nobly. Where there is lofty thinking there is lofty conduct. Where there is lofty conduct there is fruitfulness. A noble man will be ready to die for his ideals. There should be no vacillation in your mind. If your mind is firm your conduct will be right. If you are imperfect you can achieve perfection by studying the Shastras. If you are steeped in darkness the Shastras can give you light. Scriptural discourses can give you proper guidance and with that guidance you can reach your goal. 178 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #190 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir WHAT DOES A SADHU DO ? Small pieces of iron sink into the water but if a large ship is made of iron and other metals it floats on water. This is what a sadhu does. A sadhu converts your life into a boat and helps it to cross the ocean of samsar. He saves you from spiritual ruin and he does not allow calamities to occur in your life. He builds up your life by means of scriptural knowledge. But if you approach Sadhus with arrogance you will not get anything. A man who is egoistic cannot attain anything. If you approach the Paramatma with humility you will attain sublimity. You approach me with a humble desire to acquire knowledge. I will answer all your questions and problems. You should be humble and polite. You should discard your arrogance. If arrogance appears, ignorance also appears at once. Arrogance brings about ignorance Humility brings about sublimity Knowledge sends out its radiance And fills our souls with high felicity 179 For Private And Personal Use Only Page #191 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra AN ERROR CORRECTED Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Page 25 last para; Line 4: "We do not worship only the Paramatma" should be read as: "We do not worship them but we worship only the Paramatma". For Private And Personal Use Only Page #192 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________ Shri Mahavir Jain Aradhana Kendra Acharya Shri Kailassagarsuri Gyanmandir Acharya Shri Padmasagara SURISHWARJI MAHARAJ For Private And Personal Use Only