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    Akhandata. Siddhis (Occult Powers)
    Ego and its Consequences 

        Disciple: Possibility of experience? Is it that we should combine all, that is past and yet develop something different?

        Guru: It is not essential to say ‘we.’ Everything happens according to the course of time. It would be true to say that the deviance is due to our ignorance. The basic inadequacy comes from our inability to do what is to be done at the right time. Look at the ignorance of our contemporary times, whose sophistication we celebrate. There are people who believe strongly in black magic. If the media is to be believed, there are people even in a country like America who are in awe of black magic. The same is the case with us who consider our culture as the greatest among World cultures: we are involved in such distorted forms of worship and rituals. Even crude forms are prevalent, such as hysterical trances, in which the ‘oracle’ overawes the devotee by a show of his powers.

        Even a person who is embarrassed to be associated with such beliefs, cannot oppose them. His family will not allow him to voice such differences. If at all he is allowed, the neighbors will ostracize the family. Today faith also is like the scourge of politics. Under the same roof one is a devotee of Vishnu, another worships Shiva, yet another follows Subrahmanya and a fourth is a worshipper of Kali or some other saint. Each one holds his object of worship as supreme, each one's logic is persuasive. Worship in effect

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    fosters and buttresses the growing feeling of the ‘I’-the ego.

        In this World, all that is created and destined for dissolution, including even a grain of sand, has its own wholeness -akhandata. In the same manner, there is a wholeness that is sustaining this Universe. It could thus be seen that this Universe exists supported by that wholeness. If considered further that wholeness itself, cannot exist without the support of another wholeness. It is clear that they support each other unawares.

        Each one of us feels big like the proverbial frog in the well. Once we understand our limitations, we will realize the need for ‘one’ support in this World. Guided by that ‘one,’ we can strive and realize that wholeness. Otherwise our striving would be futile, as though we have done nothing at all.

        If you try to consider all this objectively, one fact becomes evident. In a past age, there have been errors in the efforts to realize that wholeness. A turgid cumulation of these, is quite clear and cannot be ignored. Yet, if we try, we can mitigate this failing. However, it would be futile to believe that it can be wiped out totally from this World. Therefore all that is possible for us to do, is to pray to be able to abide by the Will of God.

        We are each a fleeting movement, which does not have the significance even of an atom in the totality. It would suffice to think of ourselves as ‘one’ of the myriads of dust particles visible in a beam of sunlight. We are nothing more. Do not think we are nothing, that would be negative and lead to a

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    void. These crores of particles freely move, meet, merge or fuse among themselves in a pervasive manner, very much like the movement of a vapor.

        Is this not the quality of our mind? The mind which is of such a nature, moves on to desires readily. In this volatile and subtle state, the mind enters the object of its desire fully. In this, we must understand that the mind does not discriminate between good or bad. We have some sanyasis as examples. They believe in the worship of certain devas and devis -‘gods’ and ‘goddesses’ who have not attained spiritual liberation- and worship them as God. This in time, would slowly turn into propitiation for granting favors, that is the fulfillment of some desire or the other. When there are many worshippers of this kind, some of them would want to show off their individual superiority. They will thus start exhibiting siddhi -working of miracles, occult powers, such as levitation, walking on water, teletransportation, etc. Siddhi, will be used for earning fame or to attract people into their way of worship or to fulfill some egoistic ends. Buddha mentioned to his disciples 2,500 years back, that he could foresee some dangers in the working of miracles, so he advised his disciples to avoid performing or developing any kind of siddhi. We must remember that also Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, and some other great sages, severely criticized the development and attainment of siddhis, advising us that this type of powers were detrimental in our spiritual evolution.

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        Fulfillment of a desire, that is the goal in all this. A person's desire might harm some and benefit others. From its creation, the World stands as a blend of good and bad. Most of us are likewise a combination of the two. Only after realizing this nature of the World, should one try to work a miracle or even a supreme miracle. Otherwise to counter the undesirable effects of such miracles, a prodigious effort will have to be made, which in itself would amount to the miracle of all miracles. Then, the efforts of both become wasted, one canceling the other. This will mean that one created and the other destroyed. This is how the efforts of all the sanyasis get wasted.

        Disciple: Are you talking about siddhis?

        Guru: Not siddhis alone. I mean all aspects of work. No sanyasi -renouncer- strives to become bad. Sanyasins, might slip into error. We have to be equipped by birth with a creative urge to seek the highest spiritual states and become instruments of Divine Will. Otherwise we might easily fall into this error unawares. This is the type of fault, that claims us when we are involved in action, both mental and physical.

        Disciple: What is your advice to avoid this error?

        Guru: The suggestion is already given. Did you not notice? The bhakta, person who is seeking spiritual realization through devotion towards God practicing worship and prayer to the Almighty, is prevented from error through his instinct for surrender. The yogi, person that seeks spiritual realization through physical exercises, meditation and respiration techniques,

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    gets it through the knowledge of Yoga. The karmi, the man who pursues spiritual realization through his righteous actions, gets it through the knowledge of karma -actions. The jnani, wise soul enlightened by darshans, -spiritual visions- with the power to see past, present and future, has it in him. Christ, Mohammed and Krishna are examples of this. Although in essence, all these are the same, the bhakta's path is characterized by the humility of his surrender. For the yogi, it is his faith in the power of his Yoga. For the karmi it is in the works he has performed. For the jnani it is his realization that all these are righteous in their respective positions. Through such knowing he realizes all that there is. Experience shows us that for the jnani and bhakta it is comparatively easier to arrive at this state.

        Disciple: Can we consider our way the path of the jnani and the bhakta?

        Guru: You may. But while doing so you should not alienate yourself from the main concern, the commitment to truth, by falling into the effort of viewing experience as ‘mine’ and ‘his.’

        Disciple: Why do you say so?

        Guru: Bhakta, jnani and yogi, all are satvic, -nature of the soul with a great tendency to spiritual purity and selflessness- and hence are accepting in their temperament. But with their satvic nature of purity, a fault can befall them -satvikahanta, the pride of the satvic. Unwittingly one might feel proud of his own virtue and selflessness. In a way this has become a universal phenomenon. A person that is egocentric or even that is proud of

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    its own virtue and selflessness, hinder its spiritual evolution. Ego is the arch-enemy of mankind.

        We can see it in ourselves. This is an aspect of mild self-approval. Also we would not run down an act out rightly even when necessary. We might unconsciously treat the highest subjects, also with this attitude. If this can affect the man of intellect, it can affect the less endowed.

        To ward this pride off, the only way is what we mentioned earlier. The bhakta will develop the urge to surrender himself to the Guru.

        In the place of surrender the jnani, wise person, sees the good in doing what is right. Thus established in that good alone, he does his great and pure work, unaffected by its magnitude, in an ordinary way. This is the path of the jnani.

        Disciple: What is the nature of the work you are suggesting?

        Guru: The suggestion is there in what I have already said. Still I shall explain in further detail.

        Now it is imperative on us to evaluate these things in terms of the present Kali Age. Things would become clear only if we keep the fact of the Kali Age in mind.

        What exactly have you understood by Kali?

    Next Chapter: Evolution in Kali Age, Pitrusuddhi, Gurumargam

    Any Questions?