Sri Sathya Sai Speaks

Divine Discourses spanning 7 Decades (1950 – 2011)

Sri Sathya Sai Speaks, Vol 29 (1996) (Download)

17 July 1996 | Prasanthi Nilayam |

Humanness Blossoms In A Compassionate Heart

Download – Humanness Blossoms In A Compassionate Heart

Editor’s note: This discourse does not appear in the Sathya Sai Speaks series. It appeared in Sanathana Sarathi, March 2012.

What can the evil effects of Kali Age do to one Whose heart is full of compassion, Whose speech is suffused with truth, and Whose body is dedicated to the service of others (Sanskrit Verse) You may worship God with various types of flowers, But He will not be pleased with such worship. If you offer Him the lotus of your heart, He will accept it with great love. Never forget this great truth. (Telugu Poem)


Everybody knows that people of Bharat have been offering various types of flowers to the Lord to worship Him in accordance with the ancient traditions of Indian culture. However, the beauty and fragrance of these flowers is only momentary.

Offer the flower of your heart to God

But there is one flower with us that neither fades nor withers away with the passage of time. This is the flower that is dear to the Lord. It is the flower of our heart, which is always full of fragrance and does not undergo any change. Offering of this flower is a true offering to the Lord.

Eight are the flowers that please the Lord, Offer Him the flowers of nonviolence and sense control, Compassion on all creatures, forbearance, and peace Penance, meditation, and truth above all. These are the flowers dear to the Lord. (Sanskrit Verse)

Among all the flowers, Sarva bhuta daya pushpam (compassion for all creatures) is most important. Man alone is endowed with this virtue of compassion. This is the flower that you should offer to God.

Easwara sarva bhutanam (God is the indweller of all beings). Names and forms may vary, but the same God is present in all. Therefore, you should have compassion toward all beings with the broad feeling that God is present in all. Then only can you understand how expansive and fragrant this compassion for all creatures is.

You need not waste your time gathering the flowers that fade away and wither away in no time. The flower of your heart is eternal, ever fresh, and ever fragrant, for which you need not spend even a naya paisa. That is the real flower. One who understands the secret of this flower is a parama jnani (one of supreme wisdom).

Practise what you study

Once, Sage Narada went to Sage Sanat Kumara and asked him to grant him true knowledge. Sanat Kumara asked Narada, “I am prepared to impart true and eternal knowledge to you, but what are your qualifications” Narada replied, “I can recite completely the four V edas and six Sastras (philosophical texts). I have understood the inner meaning of every word of these. I can recognise the secret of karma (action) and its fruition. These are my qualifications.” Sanat Kumara replied, “Narada, it is true that you have studied all the Vedas and Sastras, but how much have you put into practice You would have attained true knowledge and everlasting happiness if you had put into practice what you have studied.” Even after gaining mastery over all types of learning,

Sage Narada was unable to experience everlasting happiness and eternal bliss. (Telugu Poem)

In spite of acquiring all types of learning, why was Narada unable to experience happiness Does happiness lie in education Does it lie in reading of books Then where does it lie

Happiness lies in practice. If you spend all your lifetime reading books, when will you put them into practice, and when will you experience the fruits of putting them into practice People keep on studying all their lives, but they do not put into practice what they have studied. How can they experience happiness without putting anything into practice Only when you eat and digest the food you have cooked can you attain nourishment and satisfaction.

Today’s education is limited to mere acquisition of bookish knowledge, which alone does not suffice; practical experience is essential.

You should practise at least a fraction of what you have studied and have personal experience. Only then can you have the taste of true happiness.

People read a number of spiritual texts. All the sacred texts of all religions propound the same truth. Various religious texts like the Bible, the Quran and the Bhagavad Gita teach the same noble principles. But how many are putting into practice the sacred principles taught by their sacred religious texts

People hate and kill each other because they do not put into practice the teachings contained in sacred texts. What is the cause of widespread anger, hatred, and jealousy in the world It is because people do not practise the sacred teachings they study in the sacred texts and do not understand the true meaning of these teachings.

It is enough if you put at least one teaching from one sacred text into practice. Therefore, start practising at least in a small way. You may study a number of sacred texts, but if you do not practise them, you will have wasted all your time and energy.

Realise unity in diversity You should have compassion toward all beings, and this is the flower you should offer to God. This is the essence of all sacred texts. The principle of Atma present in all is one and the same. Realising unity in diversity is knowledge, and seeing diversity in unity is ignorance. Today, many intellectuals see diversity in unity, but very few noble souls see unity in diversity. You should make efforts to realise unity in diversity. How can you do it What is this principle of unity that underlies diverse objects in this world Science students know it very well that the atom is the minutest particle. There is no object that is not made up of atoms. The objects of this world may have different names and forms, but all of these are made only of atoms. The same principle is propounded in Vedanta: Anoraneeyan Mahato Maheeyan (Brahman is subtler than the subtlest and vaster than the vastest). God is smaller than the smallest and bigger than the biggest. Therefore, when you understand the principle of the atom, you will understand everything. This is the main teaching of Vedanta, the true meaning of education, the goal of all paths, and the essence of all spiritual knowledge. That is compassion, love, and kindness. Bereft of compassion, people’s hearts have become hard like a rock. Even iron can be beaten and moulded, but it is very difficult to melt the heart of a person today. It can be melted only by love. There is nothing in this world that cannot be melted by love. Therefore, every student and every individual should fill their heart with love. Do not misuse love for your self-interest and selfish gains. There may be some amount of selfishness in the love of preceptor, husband and wife, and even parents. But there is absolutely no trace of selfishness in the love of God. Make yourselves deserving of such love. When there is a heavy downpour, you can collect some water in a vessel if you keep it upright. On the other hand, if you keep the vessel upside down, you cannot collect even a drop of water. Likewise, divine grace is available in plenty everywhere, but you are not keeping the vessel of your heart in the upright position. Various types of feelings emerge from the heart from moment to moment. All of you know that the clouds that originate from the sun cover the sun itself. If you leave the water unused for some time, the moss that originates from water covers the water itself. The cataract that is born in the eye obstructs its vision. The ash that is produced by the fire covers the fire itself. Likewise, there is compassion in the heart of man, but if one does not utilise it or takes to evil ways, one’s ignorance will eclipse the compassion itself and make the heart hard like a rock. God is formless and attributeless, but He also assumes a form with attributes. There is sakara (with form) in nirakara (formless) and nirakara in sakara. Likewise, there is saguna (attributes) in nirguna (attributeless) and viceversa. A block of ice has a form, but it is not different from water. There can be no ice without water. When drops of water freeze, they form ice. The difference between sakara and nirakara is the same as the difference between ice and water. Your studies should bring about your refinement There is oil in til seeds, but you should know the process by which you can extract oil from them. How can you get jaggery out of sugarcane unless you crush it and extract the juice There is sweet juice in the sugarcane. But if you ask, “oh sugarcane, give me jaggery,” will it give You have to crush it, extract its juice, and put it on fire. Only then can it assume the form of jaggery. If you think by crushing the sugarcane you are subjecting it to a great ordeal, then you cannot have jaggery from it. Its juice will dry up if you keep it aside for a few days. Thereby, its sweet juice will become useless. Our body is like sugarcane. When it is subjected to difficulties, ordeals, and problems, the qualities of compassion, love, and kindness will manifest from it. This is called samskara (refinement). Sweetness is manifested in a person who is is subjected to the process of samskara. That is why, since ancient times, the culture of Bharat has laid great emphasis on samskara. If you go to a goldsmith, give him some gold, and ask him to make an ornament out of it, what will he do He will cast it in fire, beat it with a hammer, and stretch it with the help of a machine. Then he will give the desired shape to the gold and make it into a beautiful ornament. On the other hand, if you ask the goldsmith not to put the gold in fire, not to beat and stretch it, then how can he make an ornament for you Arjuna said to Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita, Chanchalam hi manah Krishna pramathi balavadrudham (Oh Krishna, this mind is very unsteady, turbulent and powerful). The mind is very unsteady and can cause great dangers. When you offer such a mind to God and ask Him to make it pure, leave it to the discretion of God to do whatever He wants to do with it. Do not question Him. But, due to the influence of Kali Yuga (the era we are in), man prays, “Oh God, I offer my mind to You, kindly make it pure without subjecting it to any difficulties or ordeals.” God cannot grant such a prayer. Kashte phali (hard work yields rich rewards). Happiness is born only out of difficulties. You don’t switch on a fan or buy an air conditioner unless the weather is hot and sultry. You do not want food if you have no hunger. Likewise, there can be no happiness if there are no difficulties. People do not remember God in times of happiness but want God to save when when they are caught up in difficulties. Nobody wants God when the going is smooth. Not only that, one even becomes egoistic when one has all comforts and conveniences. Pleasure is an interval between two pains. Therefore, one should be prepared to bear difficulties and sorrows. Only then can one develop the qualities of fortitude and courage and derive happiness. Humanness will blossom only when there is harmony between one’s mind, hand, and speech. This is the meaning of the verse that I told you in the beginning. The proper study of mankind is man. Study what you are supposed to study, but at the same time, have refinement also. Your studies have value only when they lead to refinement. A bird cannot fly unless it has two wings. A bicycle also has two wheels. One may be able to ride a monocycle with some practice in a circus, but it is not useful in daily life. Similarly, both education and refinement are needed to lead a balanced life. Refinement means getting rid of evil qualities and developing virtues and goodness. This is the secret of samskara (refinement). You will be free from all ordeals when you understand this secret and act accordingly. You will then be unruffled even in the face of serious problems. Carve out a niche in the hearts of people Youth today should develop steady vision and unwavering mind. How can you attain them It is possible when your faith is firm. Faith in whom Faith in yourself, faith in God. This is the secret of greatness. When you don’t have faith in yourself, how can you have faith in God Who is God You yourself are God. But you are unable to realise this truth. Where is the need to search for God You are looking for Him here and there. God is installed in your heart. Deho Devalaya Proktho Jivo Deva Sanathana (the body is a temple, and the indweller is God). Body is a temple. What type of temple is this It is a moving temple. God follows you wherever you go. He is with you, in you, around you, below you, and above you. First of all, you should have firm faith in this eternal truth. You should conduct yourself to the satisfaction of your conscience. Put into practice at least one or two teachings that you have learnt on the path of spirituality. Instead of listening to tonnes and tonnes of discourses, it is better that you put into practice at least an ounce of what you have heard. This will cure all the ills of your life. An empty head can be filled with anything. But you fill it with all unwanted worldly matters. You stuff your head with unnecessary information about all the countries of the world – Germany, Japan, Russia, etc. – but you do not know what you are supposed to acquire. You should give room to noble thoughts and ideals that are necessary for your daily life. Many noble souls took birth in this world and propagated great ideals. There were many highly educated people, but their names are found only in history books. It is only noble souls like Ramakrishna Paramahamsa who have found a permanent in the hearts of people. The names of educated people find only in books, whereas the names of noble souls will be imprinted on the hearts of people forever. What is so great about finding your name in history books You should find a in the hearts of people. People should extol you, saying, “Oh what a great soul he is,” and put your ideals into practice. You should have samskara (refinement) along with education. But people today do not even know what samskara means. They do a lot of research, but they do not know what refinement really means. Eliot defined culture as a way of life. What type of way it should be The path that leads to bliss directly is the real way of life. What type of qualities should you acquire for this Brahmanandam, Parama Sukhadam, Kevalam Jnanamurtim, Dwandwateetam, Gagana Sadrisham, Tattwamasyadi Lakshyam, Ekam, Nityam, Vimalam, Achalam, Sarvadhee Sakshibhutam. God is the embodiment of divine bliss, wisdom absolute, beyond the pair of opposites, expansive and pervasive like the sky, the goal indicated by the great aphorism “You are That”, one without a second, eternal, pure, unchanging, witness of all functions of the intellect, beyond all mental conditions and the three attributes of serenity, passion, and sloth). Students should lead an ideal life The entire universe is the combination of the gunas (qualities) of sathwa, rajas, and thamas (serenity, passion, and sloth). The human body is also comprised of these three qualities. One should try to transcend the three gunas. There are four strings in a violin, with the help of which one can play four hundred types of tunes. Likewise, these three gunas give rise to many other gunas. Science students are aware of this truth that white colour is the combination of seven different colours. White colour represents purity. The combination of seven colours symbolises unity. Unity leads to purity and purity leads to Divinity. You wear white dress, which symbolises purity. In accordance with your dress, you should keep your heart also pure, sacred, and selfless. Everything in the world is the reflection of the inner being. What is inside is reflected outside. If there is no harmony between what you think and what you say, it amounts to deception. Our students should be ideal in all respects. They should uphold the name of their institution and bring a good name to their parents. Make your parents feel proud of you. Dhritarashtra had hundred sons, but what was his ultimate fate Did Suka undergo any suffering because he did not have a son (Telugu Poem) What type of son should one aspire for Even one good son who will bring a good name to you is enough. Even one virtuous son will bring a good name to the entire clan, just as jasmine creeper spreads fragrance all around in the forest. (Telugu Poem) Just as a jasmine flower spreads fragrance all around, you should try to impart good qualities, good feelings, and good thoughts to all those with whom you come into contact. Never hurt anyone, and never imitate others. Follow your conscience. Help Ever , Hurt Never. If you follow these three principles, nothing in three worlds can shake you. However, you should follow these three principles with deep faith. If your mind wavers like the pendulum of a clock, you cannot achieve anything. King Harishchandra took a vow that he would not deviate from the path of truth even at the cost of his life. That is why even after thousands of years, he is remembered as Sathya Harishchandra. Is it the body that is all important for us This body is a den of dirt, and prone to diseases; It is subject to change from time to time; It cannot cross the ocean of samsara (worldliness); It is nothing but a structure of bones. Oh mind! Do not be under the delusion that body is permanent. Instead take refuge at the Divine Lotus Feet. (Telugu Poem) Body is like a water bubble. Mind is like a mad monkey. Don’t follow the body, don’t follow the mind. Follow the conscience. Your conscience is your witness. Today, the mind of not only students but also elders is unsteady like the mind of a monkey. Not an ordinary monkey but a mad monkey. Therefore, before performing any action, take time and discriminate: is it good or bad, is it right or wrong. After due consideration, follow what is good. Don’t be in haste. Haste makes waste, waste makes worry. So, do not be in a hurry. Contemplate on God with a steady mind and ask whether what you are going to do is right or wrong; will it do good or cause harm to others. But, unfortunately, students today do not have such broad feelings. One should not think in a selfish manner. Suppose someone prays, “Oh God, there is a heavy rain with lightning and thunderbolt, let others be struck by the thunderbolt, not me.” This type of attitude is not correct. You should pray for the welfare of the entire world. Samasta Loka Sukhino Bhavantu (May all the beings of all the worlds be happy)! This is the prayer that you recite every day. Pray for the welfare of people of all religions and all nations. Students should strengthen their faith that all religions and their respective sacred texts are highly sacred. Do not criticise any religion, because the goal of all religions is one and the same. Students! Give up hatred. Develop love and compassion, and lead your life in a righteous manner. (Bhagavan concluded His Discourse with the bhajan, “Hari Bhajan Bina Sukha Santhi Nahi ….”)

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