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The Master Course

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


Lesson 41

Sloka 41 from Dancing with Siva

Where Did This Universe Come from?

Supreme God Siva created the world and all things in it. He creates and sustains from moment to moment every atom of the seen physical and unseen spiritual universe. Everything is within Him. He is within everything. Aum.

Bhashya

God Siva created us. He created the earth and all things upon it, animate and inanimate. He created time and gravity, the vast spaces and the uncounted stars. He created night and day, joy and sorrow, love and hate, birth and death. He created the gross and the subtle, this world and the other worlds. There are three worlds of existence: the physical, subtle and causal, termed Bhuloka, Antarloka and Sivaloka. The Creator of all, Siva Himself is uncreated. As supreme Mahadeva, Siva wills into manifestation all souls and all form, issuing them from Himself like light from a fire or waves from an ocean. Rishis describe this perpetual process as the unfoldment of thirty-six tattvas, stages of manifestation, from the Siva tattva--Parashakti and nada--to the five elements. Creation is not the making of a separate thing, but an emanation of Himself. Lord Siva creates, constantly sustains the form of His creations and absorbs them back into Himself. The Vedas elucidate, "As a spider spins and withdraws its web, as herbs grow on the earth, as hair grows on the head and body of a person, so also from the Imperishable arises this universe." Aum Namah Sivaya.


Lesson 41 from Living with Siva

Many Ways Of Giving

There are so many ways of giving. Arising before the Sun comes up, greeting and giving namaskara to the Sun is a part of Saivite culture. Dana is built into all aspects of Hindu life--giving to the holy man, giving to the astrologer, giving to the teacher, giving dakshina to a swami or a satguru for his support, over and above all giving to his institution, over and above dashamamsha, over and above giving to the temple. If the satguru has satisfied you with the fullness of his presence, you must satisfy yourself in equal fullness in giving back. You can be happily fat as these two fullnesses merge within you. By giving to the satguru, you give him the satisfaction of giving to another, for he has no needs except the need to practice dana.

Great souls have always taught that, among all the forms of giving, imparting the spiritual teachings is the highest. You can give money or food and provide for the physical aspects of the being, but if you can find a way to give the dharma, the illumined wisdom of the traditions of the Sanatana Dharma, then you are giving to the spirit of the person, to the soul. Many Hindus buy religious literature to give away, because jnana dana, giving wisdom, is the highest giving. Several groups in Malaysia and Mauritius gave away over 70,000 pieces of literature in a twenty-month period. Another group in the United States gave away 300,000 pieces of literature in the same period. Many pieces of that literature changed the lives of individuals and brought them into a great fullness of soul satisfaction. An electric-shock blessing would go out from them at the peak of their fulfillment and fill the hearts of all the givers. Giving through education is a glorious fulfillment for the giver, as well as for the receiver.

Wealthy men in India will feed twenty thousand people in the hopes that one enlightened soul who was truly hungry at that time might partake of this dana and the shakti that arises within him at the peak of his satisfaction will prepare for the giver a better birth in his next life. This is the great spirit of anna yajna, feeding the masses.

Along with the gift comes a portion of the karma of the giver. There was an astrologer who when given more than his due for a jyotisha consultation would always give the excess to a nearby temple, as he did not want to assume any additional karma by receiving more than the worth of his predictions. Another wise person said, "I don't do the antyeshti samskara, funeral rites, because I can't receive the dana coming from that source of sadness. It would affect my family." Giving is also a way of balancing karma, of expressing gratitude for blessings received. A devotee explained, "I cannot leave the temple without giving to the hundi, offering box, according to the fullness I have received as fullness from the temple." A gourmet once said, "I cannot leave the restaurant until I give gratuity to the waiter equaling the satisfaction I felt from the service he gave." This is dana, this is giving, in a different form.

Children should be taught giving at a very young age. They don't yet have the ten restraints, the yamas, to worry about. They have not been corrupted by the impact of their own prarabdha karmas. Little children, even babies, can be taught dana--giving to the temple, to holy ones, to one another, to their parents. They can be taught worship, recitation and, of course, contentment--told how beautiful they are when they are quiet and experiencing the joy of serenity. Institutions should also give, according to their means, to other institutions.


Sutra 41 of the Nandinatha Sutras

The Four Progressive Stages Of The Path

Siva's followers all believe that the performance of charya, virtuous living; kriya, temple worship; and yoga, leading to Parasiva through the grace of the living satguru, is absolutely necessary to bring forth jnana, wisdom. Aum.


Lesson 41 from Merging with Siva

Superconscious Signposts


When your awareness is in superconsciousness, you see yourself as pure life force flowing through people, through trees, through everything. I have seen myself, in a certain state of samadhi, as pure life force flowing through a jungle, through trees, through plants, through water, through air. That is superconsciousness. It is so permanent. It is so real. Nothing could touch it. Nothing could hurt it. In this state we see the external world as a dream, and things begin to look transparent to us. People begin to look transparent. This is superconsciousness. When we look at a physical object and we begin to see it scintillating in light as it begins to become transparent, this is superconsciousness. It is a very beautiful and natural state to be in.

Occasionally, in deep meditation we see the head filled with an intense light, and we know that that is the natural state of man. This is superconsciousness: when we can look at another person and know what he is thinking and how he is feeling and how his subconscious is programmed. While we are looking at him, all of a sudden he can be seen in a past life, or in the future, or in the eternity of the moment. You are so naturally, without striving, in the superconscious area of the mind. No technique can give you these experiences that you unfold into as you walk the path toward merger. You come right into them, and the experience is how you are. Occasionally, when you close your eyes in meditation, you may see the face of your guru or some divine being that possibly once lived on Earth, and now just the shell of his subtle body remains vibrating in the ethers. You see superconscious beings while in the superconscious area of the mind. Occasionally, you clairaudiently hear voices singing, music playing, just as Beethoven heard his wonderful symphonies that he recorded like a scribe. It is the superconscious mind again, so near, so real, so vibrant.

And when you are in contemplation, so engrossed in the energies within you--within the physical body and the energy within that, and that within that--that you become totally engrossed in the peace of the central source of all energy, that too is superconsciousness. Being on the brink of Self Realization, having lost consciousness of the physical body and of being a mind, you are only conscious of a vast, bluish white light. You get into this through going into the clear white light and out through the other side of it. Then you come into pure consciousness. It is a vast, pure, pale bluish white light--endless, endless inner space. It is just on the brink of the Absolute, just on the brink of the fullness of Self Realization. When you are in this beautiful, blissful state of pure consciousness, you are barely conscious that you are there, because to have a consciousness of being conscious, you have to be conscious of another thing.

These are some of the wonderful signposts on the path, all within your immediate grasp in this life, just as the ability to play the vina or the flute beautifully in this life is within your immediate grasp. It takes practice, following the rules and then more practice.

     



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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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