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The lesson of the day from Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami's trilogy: Dancing with Siva, Living with Siva and Merging with Siva

Lesson 14

Sloka 14 from Dancing with Siva

What Is the Nature of Life for Saivites?

To the Saivite Hindu, all of life is sacred. All of life is religion. Thus, Saivite art is sacred art, Saivite music is devotional music, and the Saivite's business is not only his livelihood, it is his service to man and God. Aum.


Each Saivite is unique in his or her quest, yet all seek the same things in life: to be happy and secure, loved and appreciated, creative and useful. Saivism has an established culture which fulfills these essential human wants and helps us understand the world and our place in it. To all devotees it gives guidance in the qualities of character so necessary in spiritual life: patience, compassion, broadmindedness, humility, industriousness and devotion. Saivism centers around the home and the temple. Monastic life is its core and its power. Family life is strong and precious. Saivism possesses a wealth of art and architecture, traditions of music, art, drama and dance, and a treasury of philosophy and scholarship. Saivite temples provide worship services daily. Scriptures give ethical guidelines. Satgurus offer advanced spiritual initiation. These three--temples, scriptures and satgurus--are our pillars of faith. The Vedas implore, "O learned people, may we with our ears listen to what is beneficial, may we see with our eyes what is beneficial. May we, engaged in your praises, enjoy with firm limbs and sound bodies, a full term of life dedicated to God." Aum Namah Sivaya.

Lesson 14 from Living with Siva

Honesty with Your Guru

Some people use the excuse of truthfulness to nag their spouse about what they don't like about him or her, or to gossip about other people's flaws. This is not the spirit of satya. We do not want to expose others' faults. Such confrontations could become argumentative and combative. No one knows one's faults better than oneself. But fear and weakness often prevail, while motivation and a clear plan to correct the situation are absent. Therefore, to give a clear plan, a positive outlook, a new way of thinking, diverts the attention of the individual and allows internal healing to take place. This is wisdom. This is ahimsa, noninjury. This is satya, truthfulness. The wise devotee is careful to never insult or humiliate others, even under the pretext of telling the truth, which is an excuse that people sometimes use to tell others what they don't like about them. Wise devotees realize that there is good and bad in everyone. There are emotional ups and downs, mental elations and depressions, encouragements and discouragements. Let's focus on the positive. This is ahimsa and satya working together.

The brahmachari and the sannyasin must be absolutely truthful with their satguru. They must be absolutely diplomatic, wise and always accentuate the good qualities within the sannyasin and brahmachari communities. The guru has the right to discuss, rebuke or discipline the uncomely qualities in raising up the brahmachari and sannyasin. Only he has this right, because it was given to him by the brahmacharis and sannyasins when they took him as their satguru. This means that brahmacharis and sannyasins cannot discipline one another, psychoanalyze and correct in the name of truthfulness, without violation of the number one yama--ahimsa, noninjury.

Mothers and fathers have rights with their own children, as do gurus with their shishyas. These rights are limited according to wisdom. They are not all-inclusive and should not inhibit free will and well-rounded growth within an individual. This is why a guru is looked upon as the mother and father by the mother and father and by the disciple who is sent to the guru's ashrama to study and learn. It is the guru's responsibility to mold the aspirant into a solid member of the monastic community, just as it is the mother's and father's duty to mold the youth to be a responsible, looked-up-to member of the family community. This is how society progresses.

The practice, niyama, to strengthen one's satya qualities is tapas, austerity--performing sadhana, penance, tapas and sacrifice. If you find you have not been truthful, if you have betrayed promises, then put yourself under the tapas sadhana. Perform a lengthy penance. Atone, repent, perform austerities. You will soon find that being truthful is much easier than what tapas and austerities will make you go through if you fail to restrain yourself.

Truthfulness is the fullness of truth. Truth itself is fullness. May fullness prevail, truth prevail, and the spirit of satya and ahimsa permeate humanity.

Sutra 14 of the Nandinatha Sutras

Guiding And Nurturing Children

Those who live with Siva personally guide their children's spiritual and secular education. They teach and model respect, share what happens each day, have fun together and shower love and hugs upon them. Aum.

Lesson 14 from Merging with Siva

Waiting for Intuitive Flashes

Go again and again and again, and finally you would become deeply involved with yourself and the people around you, and you will start having a new set of experiences. Someone's eating popcorn on the left side and someone's smoking on the right side, and you get up and move. The very first time you went to see the movie, you were not even conscious of anyone around you.

And finally, after going to this same movie for two weeks, you sit down and you start breathing and going within yourself, and you are not conscious of someone on the left side or someone on the right side, or the film or the light penetrating the film or what is on the film. You are breathing and going within yourself, and you begin to enjoy the bliss of your own being. That is what a mystic does in life. That's a wonderful meditation. If you don't want to go to the same film two or three weeks, night after night after night, well then just pretend that you do. Meditate on it and in the course of a short meditation you will see how a mystic lives his life. Now, of course, one film and its nerve-wracking experiences conquered, there's always another film being played in town, and you could start right over again--the same thing we do in our experiences. We go through one set of experiences. We react to them. We go within ourselves. We lose consciousness of the experience itself because we know how it was created. We studied it out so well. It has come to us in intuitive flashes. Then we go into the next movie, the next scene.

Now, when the mystic wants to understand his series of experiences, he does not analyze himself. He doesn't go through the emotion of "Why did this happen to me?" "What did I do to deserve that?" "What did this experience come to me for? I want to know the reason, and only when I know the reason can I go on." This binds him to the intellectual area of the mind. He lives his experiences in the consciousness of the eternity of the moment, and if an intuitive flash, a mountaintop consciousness, comes to him where he can see how he fit into the experiential pattern, he accepts it and he knows it's right, because it permeates him so dramatically, from the top of his head right through his entire body.

The mystic waits for these intuitive flashes, and he links one up with another. But he doesn't flow his awareness through the intellectual mind and spend time in that area to try to analyze each happening or each reaction to try to justify it, to excuse it or to find out why it has happened. He doesn't do that. Why? Because the soul, the superconscious mind, doesn't work that way.


Click for details on Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami's next mission, so you can meet him.

These daily Master Course lessons are drawn from Gurudeva's 3,000 page trilogy on Hindu philosophy, culture and metaphysics, available in the full-color volumes of Dancing, Living and Merging with Siva at our Minimela online store.


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