THE MEANING OF TRUE ACCEPTANCE
NO ONE ON EARTH REMOVES ALL THEIR SAMSKARAS
As we have discussed before, all the impressions that we have had form what is known as our ego. No one on earth, not even the greatest man that has ever lived, including Krishna, Christ or Buddha, could get rid of all their samskaras. They could only have clarity as far as 98 percent. The 2 percent has to be left to give them personality so they can be conscious of themselves. If anyone tells you that such and such a person is a perfect man, do not believe it because if you were an excellent man, then you would not have this body. To carry this body, you have to have that two percent imperfection. You have got to have that two percent sense of “I-ness”, and it is the ego self that carries this body. There has to be that two percent ego left in man to be able to live in this world. It is like 24 carats, but you could not make jewellery from pure gold. You could not make a ring or, necklace, or bracelet because it is too soft. You have got to add on two carats of some kind of alloy to give it firmness and strength. That which is called pure gold is only 22 carats and not 24 carats.
YOU CAN GET RID OF KARMA IN ONE LIFETIME
We have one factor, the greatest gift of Divinity: the gift of Grace. Here karma works hand in hand with Grace. If you have millions of years’ worth of karma, the impressions stored within you that make up your ego self, it does not mean you have to live millions and millions of lifetimes to get rid of them all. They can be got rid of in one lifetime. Man has the ability in him to reach enlightenment in one lifetime, not by getting rid of the karmas, but by shedding them. This is a new angle to Eastern philosophy. This is a new angle to the saying, “Whatever you sow, you must reap.” But let us try to understand it in a different context.
How does one shed karma? The seeds are there, and the normal expression used by Sanskritists is that you burn the roots so that they cannot germinate. Spiritual practices play a significant part in igniting the seeds, and the proper mode of living and thinking plays an important role. But the more significant factor is played by action and by non-stagnation. I usually say that if you have killed ten people, it is unnecessary to be killed ten times. If you save 11 lives, you have one in the credit. So, the impressions and the karma formed by ten killings are automatically removed because it works on the balance sheet principle, forever balancing itself, and how much karma you have left on the credit side is what you are today.
GOOD KARMA IS EQUALLY BINDING AS BAD KARMA
As far as karma goes, good karma is equally binding as bad karma. We have talked a bit about angels, and I have said that angels are in the form of stagnation and do not evolve. When one reaches that plane, one experiences a kind of happiness. All the good that you have done, you have to be rewarded for, and you get rewarded for some of it in this lifetime, and if there is a credit balance, then after you leave this body, you enjoy the rewards of your action in another form which you could call angels. But that is all you do until that karmic law repays you for what you have done.
In that state of being an angel, you are enjoying existence, but there is no progress. The meal has been cooked, and you are sitting down enjoying the dinner. Therefore, angels must be born once they have all their rewards. To learn and evolve further, they must be born again as men or a similar entity in the same range of existence.
That is what goes on. Bad things do not affect your Spiritual Self because it cannot be touched by good or bad; it is above all. The spiritual life we talk about is above good and evil. But, if you have done things contrary to the laws of nature, you have to pay for that as well. That is what we call the concept of hell, where you are tortured for it and paid for it. Yet those very heavens and hells are here and now and can all be rewarded, paid for, or repented upon here in this lifetime. So, millions of years of build-ups can be done away with here in this lifetime.
A cook or a mother spends hours and hours at the stove, but it only takes you ten minutes to finish the meal. According to karmic law, time is not a factor on that level. We measure time only here and now, but there is no such thing as time in the entire scheme of things. A million years might have passed in ordinary existence, on the relative or the grosser relative, but all of that can be wiped away in a few moments. The time it takes to prepare the candle and the match is far, far longer than just striking the game and creating Light, which is illumination. When that illumination occurs with certain realizations, then the darkness of all those samskaras disappears. But the lighting is so powerful that although you reap what you have sown, you are beyond the time factor. Darkness might exist in an old English castle for a few hundred years, yet you walk in there with a lighted lamp and the darkness of hundreds of years in this unoccupied castle vanishes immediately. It disappears because you are there with this Light, and spiritual practices light this Light.
So, as the Force of the divine aspect of man is drawn forth from within to the subconscious, it lights up the darker recesses of the subconscious mind and eliminates the samskaras. The Sanskrit word for practices is also “tapas”, and tapas means heat. When this Light or heat is drawn from within, it burns up the seeds of your past experiences that are there so they cannot germinate. It cannot grow, and it cannot replicate or duplicate itself to cause consequences that are not necessary for you.
PROPER ACCEPTANCE MEANS THAT YOU ACCEPT THE CHALLENGE THROUGH ACTION
People are often afraid that they have gone through so many lifetimes and experiences, and they are paying for it now. That is good to think that way. That gives you a sense of acceptance that I must accept my lot wherever I am. But after you have this experience, you can also look at the other side of things, that with this acceptance, you must perform an action, for approval alone will not help you. Acceptance stems from the mind, from an analytical process, and blessing can also come from the Heart. But then acceptance can also be cowardly. Because you are a coward, you are not prepared to fight, so you just accept.
Acceptance has various forms in how blessing is used. You can accept defeat, and you can achieve success. If a person is a big bully and more robust than you, you do not fight him, and you say, “Oh, well, I am a stronger man because I am not going to be violent.” It sounds beautiful from the outside, but speaking, you are afraid. You are accepting defeat there now, not because you are more robust but because you are weak because you fear. So, with the proper kind of acceptance, it would mean that you are accepting the challenge by action.
RIGHT AND RIGHTEOUS ARE ABOVE GOOD AND BAD
The little pond was talking with the river, and the little pond said to the river, “Oh river, how foolish you are forever sending your water away to the ocean, and all the water you send away will not make the ocean any bigger. It will not alter the saltiness of the brine in the ocean. Why do you do this? What result are you going to get out of it? You are just giving and giving and giving your waters, pouring them to the ocean.” So, the river replies, “I do not care for the result or what will happen to my waters. I am just giving it to the ocean as an offering.” And yet when the Indian summer was at its hottest, the little pond dried up, stagnated, festering, and no water was left. But the river was forever flowing. That is the action; forever to be in motion, for that same action in the offering of the river, the ocean so silently, so quietly and unnoticeably evaporates itself to fall at the fountainhead of the river to make it keep on flowing and flowing and flowing.
Suppose all the actions we perform are an offering to the divine ocean. In that case, they will naturally wash away the dirt, for all the waters in the river are not fresh all the time because it is moving, it is acting, it is performing, while the water in the pond stagnates. As the river’s water is forever fresh and moving its dirt away to the ocean, man, too, in his action, can move away all those samskaras, all those impressions, to the ocean of Divinity. Do you see how easy it is to reach that high state in one lifetime? That is called right action, neither good action nor lousy action, but right action. That which is right and righteous knows of nothing good nor bad because it is above both. It just keeps on working.
KEEP ON DOING THIS, AND YOU WILL REACH THE GOAL
If man’s life is regulated that way, the rewards come by themselves. Commonly people would say that you must have an aim and a goal in life that you will reach here or there. That is not necessary. Do not aim for the goal at all; just keep on acting. Just keep on doing it, and you will reach the goal. If you are driving from here to Baltimore, you are not repeating to yourself all the time, “Baltimore, Baltimore, Baltimore.” No. You are just driving, and if you are on the right path, you inevitably will reach your goal. You go to work, and at the end of the month, you will have the salary check, and you will not be thinking of the salary check throughout the day or every hour. It is only when it comes nearer to the end of the month when you are broke then you say, “Oh, why do these few days not fly a bit faster?” But meanwhile, you are working, and the salary check is automatically there.
This is how, by spiritual practices and right action, and if one is not sure by guided activity from one who knows, one gets rid of those impressions and samskaras. If you allow it to take its course, you will still be rid of those samskaras. You will still be rid of the impressions; your ego self will still be cleansed. All the dirt and dross will be washed away. But what a long process where you will have to taste every bit of the fruit of the seeds that you have sown, bitter or sweet. And what a long process that is, while this process of meditation, spiritual practice, and acceptance in its proper sense brings about surrender. Does the river not surrender itself to the ocean? That way, all the karmic debts, the debits and the credits are washed away. You do not want credits only, and neither do you want debits. You have to neutralize yourself totally to reach Divinity. To achieve that which is attributeless, you too have to become attributeless, which only means that the ego is clarified. All the impressions and experiences are got rid of. You cannot destroy them.
But spiritual practices disperse the energies, for the ego is also composed of energy, and it distributes the power where the energy leaves you. That ego energy leaves you and goes to what is attracted to it. You know the red colour will run to the red, and the blue colour will run to the blue: fire to fire, earth to earth, air to air, water to water, ether to ether. That is why good, holy thinking also reduces the so-called negative ego thoughts in the relative field.
ALL THESE THINGS WE DO ARE BUT A PREPARATION FOR ILLUMINATION
Illumination comes in a moment. It is not something that grows upon you. It comes in a moment, and you will be surprised how suddenly it can dawn upon you. You will be surprised. All these things we do are just preparations for that moment of Light. For that moment of illumination, all these are preparations that people consider so much work and effort. Therefore, I use the analogy of the river, how it flows and flows and flows, yet it does not work. Such is also the nature of man: to flow and flow and flow, and the same work involved in the flow becomes effortless.
HAPPINESS RESIDE WITHIN
Ninety-nine percent of the world’s population does not like the jobs that they are doing. They live in a world of wishful thinking. They are always trying to imagine themselves in a different position. In other words, it means that they always try to imagine what they are not at that moment. A person has a job as a lobbyist in the Senate. Look at the wonderful, exciting people you are meeting, lobbying around with them. How many beautiful exchanges of ideas? How much it could enrich one’s mind. Natural riches can be found in that communication where you could impart so much with the spirituality awakened in you. Even in that lobbying where you, subtly, so beautifully, could put a person’s thinking straight, for the meditators so unconsciously do this without effort that with whatever they do, there is also such a pouring of the inner self, their Spiritual Self, in it. It pours with it, and those same vibrations can alter the thoughts of many people who rule the country. A subtle influence that you are contributing to something so beautiful, for a true meditator will always, in all his actions, convey that Force that is within. But now, the lobbyist would think, “Oh, I wish I could be the president’s personal secretary.” Why? Why is it necessary to be the president’s personal secretary or any other kind of job for that matter? It is not essential because the happiness in man is not in the position. Happiness in every person is in what we are, what is in us, and it is we that make the job situation happy or unhappy.
Many a lawyer would have loved to have been a doctor. Many a doctor would have loved to have been an architect, and like that, it goes on. Many a salesperson like to have been a carpenter, and many achieve it. Why not? But let it not be craving. Let it not be a deep desire which disturbs you emotionally, for, by that, you are not getting rid of the seeds of the karma or the impressions of past experiences. You are only strengthening them, and by supporting them, you got to carry on for millions and millions and millions of years suffering, suffering, suffering; unnecessary misery created by one’s self. If it comes to the push, I will sweep streets, and I would not be ashamed of it because I feel that a street sweeper does a greater service than a doctor. A street sweeper creates greater hygiene and prevents diseases, while the doctor only tries to cure them. Is prevention not better than cure?
THE MEANING OF TRUE ACCEPTANCE
Here is the meaning of true acceptance, which applies to every facet of our lives by true acceptance. Here is one little secret I want you to remember as long as you live. You will never get that which you yearn for or that which you long for. You will not get what you desire, and if you do, perchance, get it, it will not produce joy or happiness. But just think of work; then you work desireless. You are an integral part of this whole scheme of the universe. Does the spoke in the wheel desire to turn? No. It just turns because the wheel turns, and the spoke is part and parcel of the wheel turning and never conscious that, “Ah, it is I that make the wheel turn.”
So, as the Bhagavad Gita would say, work for the sake of work; offer it all to Divinity. It just means that you work for the sake of work, whatever kind of work it is, and when you work just for the sake of work, so much joy comes because the craving for pleasure is not there. When you crave joy, it runs away from you. If you neutralize yourself, your work’s rewards always come there. Like the river, never stopping and continue working and constantly being replenished, so it runs and runs and runs and never runs dry.
ONE SECRET TO FINDING JOY
That is one secret of finding joy and, simultaneously, destroying all the karma or discarding all the karmic values of life. How would I start composing if I were a lyricist or a musician? Not by formulating a melody first but by letting my Heart and mind flow, so that flow itself becomes a melody. That is creative melody making, for you do not desire or want to know what the outcome will be. Your idea in the back of your mind is the creation of this melody or this lyric, but as you go on putting your notes together and ping pong on the piano, the tune merges itself, and if you are a meditator, you can make it merge from the soul and not from the mind, for the mind is an instrument which uses the other instrument of the piano or the violin or the guitar or whatever.
… Gururaj Ananda Yogi: Satsang US 1981 – 20