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Bhagwan Sri Sathya Sai Baba Answers For
Scriptures And Baba
Swami! Today's atmosphere is, indeed, nightmarish. There seems
to be no end to injustice, disorder, unrighteousness, and falsehood.
Forgive me, Swami, if my question is not proper. Kindly
clarify my doubt. How much justice did prevail in the Age of the Mahabharata?
Besides serving poisoned food to the Pandavas, setting fire to the
house of lac, and attempting to murder them in other ways, the
Kauravas denied them their rightful share of the kingdom, not even
five villages, not so much space as the point of a needle. How much of
the moral code or the law of the time had the Kauravas followed? How
little peace was ever there in that Yuga?
distinctive dharma of the Dvaparayuga is not fully found in that Yuga.
The beginnings of Kali, its mode and behavioral style, are already
noticeable. For the wicked conduct of the Kauravas; Sakuni is largely
responsible. Heeding his advice and egged on by him, they behaved in
the way they did. Undoubtedly, launching themselves on unrighteous
paths is the fault of the Kauravas. Remember, all this took place in
Swami! We lack adequate knowledge of many important things. We have
only a partial view of divinity. Hence, we tend to ignore the reality
and are prone to doubt divinity. It is our misfortune that
we find fault with God too, and attribute human fallibility to him. In
the Mahabharata, it appears that
is faultless. He is pure and unsullied. It will be the worst of sins
to attribute any kind of mistake to God. Every inch of God, if it can
be put that way, is selfless and whatever He says and does is for the
welfare of humanity. He gives and forgives. He doesn't want anything
from anybody in return, nor does He keep anything in this world that
doesn't belong to Him? May be due to the effects of Kali, you see
people with narrow, selfish ideals that are responsible for physical
and mental agitations, and disturbances everywhere. Man today has no
trace of gratitude left in him. He has gone even to the extent of
ignoring his parents. He has grown demonic in his behavior. So, it is
difficult for him to recognise God.
The Kauravas were
wicked and spent their lives in injustice, untruth and
unrighteousness. They were full of hatred and jealousy. Out of greed
and envy, they did many cruel things like poisoning the Pandavas,
setting their house on fire, making them play dice where they cheated,
only to end their own lives. So, they had to be checked and
controlled. You know, a diamond cuts a diamond. You can remove a thorn
only with the help of another thorn. A simple example here will make
this point clearer to you. When thieves run away with valuables
through the back door, to catch them you also should go through the
back door. You just can't say in such a moment, "What! I am the
owner of the house. I can only go out of it through the main door and
not the back door." So, the back door is the only way for you to
catch the thieves. Is it not so? Similarly, to catch the Kauravas, who
trod the wrong path, you had to go by the same route.
is a foolish question. As the facts are not known to you correctly,
you think like that. Here, there was no mistake on the part of
Asvatthama died and
also said softly "kunjarah," an elephant by name
Asvatthama died. Dronacharya did not listen completely to what
Dharmaja had said. He heard only the first part "asvatthama
Out of his attachment to his son, Dronacharya died immediately on
hearing the first part of Dharmaja's statement. He died of the shock.
His attachment was the only cause of his death. So the fault finally
lies with Dronacharya, not hearing patiently and completely what
Dharmaja said. How do you accept that Dronacharya, who loved Arjuna
more than his own son, could be prepared to fight and kill Arjuna?
Being a teacher and a Brahmana for that matter, should he fight like
that? So, the mistake was Drona's only.
Swami! In the Mahabharata, it is a pity to notice the
killing of youngsters like Abhimanyu and Ghatotkacha for no fault
of their own. It is justifiable if bad people are killed or
punished. But, how can we account for the death of these youngsters?
answer is very easy and simple. A small example I give you here to,,
make you clearly understand the answer to the question. When there are
a large number of mosquitoes in your house, what do you do generally?
You spray some kind of insecticide like Flit all over the house or use
DDT, to kill the mosquitoes, don't you? You have to notice one point
here. Due to spraying poisonous insecticide, all the mosquitoes die.
After all only one or two mosquitoes must have bitten you, not all of
them. But, all those mosquitoes that have not bitten you also die in
your operation. Similarly, in a war some innocents also die. This is
Swami! We hear that Arjuna was the only one capable of breaking open
and emerging victorious from the Padmavyuha, the lotus‑like
military formation or manoeuvre, set up as a death trap.
But, Abhimanyu knew only how to get in and not how to get out of it; a
fact that resulted in his death. There are some stories heard about
this episode from the Mahabharata. It appears that when Narada
was describing the whole manoeuvre to Abhimanyu who was still in the
ancient literature of Bharat has many secrets to be unravelled and
grasped. So, many subtle points are not known to everybody. They show
the goal and the way of life. They remind you of the duties,
responsibilities, and obligations you owe to the society you live in.
They point out your mistakes as well so that you may correct and
rectify yourself and thus experience the divinity within. Every
episode or anecdote in the epics or in the religious texts in story
form has a message for you.
Arjuna had, to his
credit, many titles like Savyasachi, Phalguna, Partha, Vijaya, etc
that are much higher than our modern Padmasri, Padmavibhushan and
other honours. Arjuna's surrender to
But things were
different in respect of Abhimanyu. He was challenged to fight and
proceed to the battleground at a time when his wife, Uttara was
pregnant, His father Arjuna was not at home and his uncle
whole world is a Padmavyuha. Our life is a Padmavyuha. Man is caught
in this Padmavyuha and his sense of attachment and possessive
instincts will not release him out of it. Since he had abhimana, he
bore the name Abhimanyu.
Swami! It is said that Draupadi laughed at Duryodhana in the
Mayasabha, which made him revengeful and highly furious and which ultimately led to the
Kurukshetra war. Will you
kindly bless us with your special interpretation?
are words of those who do not know the reality. Draupadi was not an
ordinary person. She was a queen, known for her chastity. She was the
wife of the great Pandavas. It is ridiculous to say that she laughed
at Duryodhana in the Mayasabha. You are mistaken if you think so. She
was not of the type to laugh at people. Those who don't know what had
actually happened think like this.
On that day after
taking a head bath, Draupadi was drying her hair and was about to come
out of the palace through the main door. It was at that time that
Duryodhana fell down mistaking the place for open ground when there
was water. Watching, this, the maidservants started laughing at the
ludicrous, sight. As Draupadi was coming out just then, Duryodhana saw
her and mistook that she was laughing at him. In fact, she did not
laugh at all. So, it was the fault of Duryodhana to think so.
There was no flaw
in Draupadi. She never raised her voice at any time. Contented with
whatever she had, she was never tired of serving the Pandavas under
any circumstances. She was the noblest of them all. It is your
foolishness to think that she laughed at Duryodhana or at any other
Swami! Krishna was surrounded, by eight consorts and is stated to have
been associated with 16,000 Gopis, cowherdesses. It is very disturbing
and embarrassing to hear of Lord Krishna's many wives.
Kindly enlighten us on this matter.
is what you have learnt from movies, isn't it?
Tell me, who were
the eight consorts of
Swami! Radha was an ardent, intimate and ideal devotee of
knowledge can't confer devotion. You can't get it from any Guru. No
friend can make a gift of devotion. It should be born in one's own
Heart. It can't be stuffed into your heart. The devotion of the Gopis
was pure and selfless. It was steady, unshakeable and unwavering.
Radha was the most prominent among them. She felt herself one with
One day to test
Radha's devotion, a Gopi gave her a pot with holes to fetch water from
the river Yamuna. Radha didn't notice that. She was constantly
repeating the sacred name of
In the very name `
Radha ', `R' , signifies 'Radha ', `A' is ` Adhar or foundation, `D'
signifies ` Dhara ' or continuous, uninterrupted flow and the next `A'
means ` Aradhana ' or worship. Her devotion was unflinching like a
dhara, continuous flow like oil.
As Radha repeated
the name of
Swami! We have now understood from your divine message that the
Pandavas could face problems and withstand troubles and tensions
because of the infinite grace of Lord Krishna. It is most
gratifying to note God's concern and love for His devotees. Kindly
give us a notable instance.
Yes, and Yes. This is the truth of truths. It is not wholly correct to
say that God loves. No.
may at the most love one or two. But, if you become love, if you are
love itself, it becomes infinite and you love all. So, don't become a
lover but be love itself. You can realise God only through love, as He
is the embodiment of love. You can see the moon only through
moonlight. Similarly, through love, you experience God who is love and
thus enjoy bliss.
The Pandavas could
face all difficulties because of the blessings of Lord Krishna. It was
their unconditional love for and surrender to
Pandava brothers along with Draupadi and Kunti were in exile. One
evening, Dharmaja and Draupadi were taking a stroll in the forest and
saw a big fruit lying on the ground. They thought that its size was so
big that it could be divided among all of them for their dinner.
Draupadi went close to that big fruit and tried to pick it up, but in
vain. Then Dharmaja assisted her in lifting the fruit, but met with
the same result. Both of them were exhausted. In the meantime, finding
that Dharmaja and Draupadi had not yet returned, Bhima and Arjuna, one
after the other, went in search of them and located them. They too
extended their helping hand in lifting the fruit and failed. Finally,
after some time, Nakula and Sahadeva joined them and all of them
together could not move the fruit. Then, they noticed something moving
just under their feet. It was all black hair spread wide on the ground
like a carpet. They lifted their heads, looked around and noticed that
these long hair were those of a sage seated in penance at a distance.
The sage was none other than Romarshi. (`Roma' means hair, and `Rishi'
The sage was just
about to open his eyes. He was doing penance for a long time for this
fruit which would make him free from thirst and appetite: The Pandavas
happened to be there near the fruit and were trying to take it home.
They felt guilty and were afraid that the sage might curse them.
Draupadi immediately prayed to
speaks volumes of the unfathomable love of God for His devotees and of
the extent to which He would go in order to protect them. But, it is
needless to say that the devotee should also be worthy of his
The Mahabharata War
was going on. Bhishma took an oath that he would kill the Pandavas the
next day. Draupadi was grief-stricken on coming to know of this
oath of Bhishma. She prayed to Lord Krishna in anguish and the Lord
took pity on her. Out of compassion, He visited her that night itself.
It was almost late in the night. On the battlefield, in a tent lay the
aged Bhishma, greatly disturbed. He was restless and couldn't sleep.
He was feeling repentant over his vow because the Pandavas were on the
side of justice and righteousness. He began pacing up and down outside
the tent, engrossed in deep thoughts of regret.
This is what bhaktaraksana,
safeguarding and protecting devotees is. God will go to any
extent to fulfill His promise. There is no doubt about it.
Swami! The incarnation of
referred to Himself as Dasarathatmaja, son of Dasaratha,
and declared Himself to be a human being. The very purpose of the
Lord's descent as Rama was to present the Ideal Man, and to
demonstrate the sacredness of humanity. Even so, there were not
lacking many who knew the divinity of Rama. All the great sages
understood this great drama being enacted then. Vasishtha confided to
Dasaratha: "O King! I have not come to your court merely to be
your priest. The Lord is soon to take birth in your family. I have
joined the court to enjoy to my heart's content. His pranks, His
amusements, and His sweet speech. As for Visvamitra, he taught Rama
and Lakshmana the powerful charms of bala and atibala, gave
them an inexhaustible quiver, and as a benefactor of humanity
initiated them into the Gayatri mantra. He knew full well the nature
of the incarnation of Rama. Other great sages like Agastya,
Bharadvaja, Matanga, and Sarabhanga were fully aware of Rama's divine
identity. It was Sarabhanga who directed Rama and Lakshmana to Sugriva
then residing in Kishkindha, adding that he would help them in the
search for Sita. Accordingly, Rama and Lakshmana proceeded to
Kishkindha. Sugriva and his retinue noticed them from a distance.
Sugriva who had earlier run a way unable to bear Vali's blows
suspected that Vali might have sent someone to attack him again, and
was terrified. He sent for Hanuman and ordered him to discover the
truth. Following Sugriva's command, Hanuman approached Rama and
Lakshmana in the guise of an old Brahmin. With due respect and decorum
and apt choice of words; Hanuman indicated his true nature and
background. In return, he came to know how and why Rama and Lakshmana
arrived in Kishkindha. You may ask me why Hanuman had disguised
himself as a Brahmin. If he appeared, he thought, as the monkey he
was, they might not heed his words. However, he had given them the
facts, hadn't he? There is no hidden evil design in this. Rama often
referred to himself saying Again and again, "I am a man,"
"I am the son of Dasaratha", and so on, pointing out thereby
the new ideal for man.
Swami! All your discourses are value-oriented and nectarine. We
notice today `gratitude' a noble value, totally missing. How do our
ancient epics depict this value?
Ramayana depicts this noblest value, gratitude, in an excellent
manner. Samudrudu (Ocean God) owes his existence to Sagara, a King of
the Surya dynasty. Rama was also of the same dynasty. So, Samudrudu
was very eager to express his sense of gratitude to Rama by
participating in the mission of rescuing Sita.. The opportunity to
serve Rama came his way when Hanuman was proceeding to Lanka in search
of Sita across the sky and over the mighty ocean.
approached Mainaka and said, "Look, Mainaka! You are a mountain
hiding yourself in the sea. I am sure you haven't forgotten the old
days when all the mountains had wings and could fly anywhere and
everywhere till Indra had clipped their wings in response to the
prayerful calls of people for help. Do you remember that you alone
were saved from this disgrace because of the intervention of Vayudeva,
wind-god to help you out? Well, his son, Hanuman, is now
passing this way to Lanka over the ocean where you are lying. Now is
your opportune moment to express your gratitude to his father. Please
pass on to him the secret of killing Lankini. Lankini is the female
demon guarding the entrance of Lanka. The secret is that if anybody
slaps her on the cheek, she will have an instantaneous death. She
knows that she will die in this way when a monkey finds its entry into
Lanka which will soon be followed by the fall of Lanka and the death
took the opportunity and rose from the sea and prayed to Hanuman,
"Oh! Lord! Your father Vayudeva helped me, or else I would have
lost my wings. Hanuman! Please take rest here. Have some fruits and
then proceed. Let me also tell you how to kill Lankini, the demon
guarding the gate of Lanka. Slap her on the cheek. Only then according
to a curse, she will die" Hanuman said, "Mainaka! I won't
eat, drink, or take rest even for a moment until the task assigned to
me by Rama is completed. However, I appreciate your gesture of
gratitude." Thus, both Mainaka and Samudrudu expressed their
gratitude. They are the ideals for everyone to emulate.
There is also
another episode in the Ramayana. Vali abducted Sugriva's wife,
Ruma. Rama killed Vali and restored to Sugriva his wife and kingdom.
In order to express his gratitude to Rama for all this, Sugriva
offered to provide an army of vanaras, monkeys, to Rama
on his march to kill Ravana and other raksasas and rescue Sita.
But as ill-luck would have it, he was delayed in his mission.
Rama sent Lakshmana to remind Sugriva of his promise.
fury Lakshmana went to Sugriva. Watching the seriousness of the
situation, Sugriva sent
Sugriva stands for
gratitude. It is the worst of sins to forget the good done to you. A
dog is a good example of gratitude. If you give a morsel of food to a
dog, it will never forget you. Should you not be grateful to Swami,
who is taking care of you, as we say like the eye your eye-lid
every moment of your life? Swami never wants or expects anything from
you. These values I have spoken of are for your own good.
Swami! Pardon us for misunderstanding the scriptures. We feel that
certain statements are contradictory to each other, and we are at a
loss to know what is to be accepted and what is to be
rejected. One scripture says 'brahma satyam jaganmithya,'
‘God is truth while the world is illusion'. You said,
"There is no maya." How are we to understand the scriptural
statement in the light of what you have told us about maya? Moreover,
the same scripture says; `sarvarn visnumayam jagat,’ ‘The
whole Universe is Divine.' Then, what and where is delusion or Maya!
Of the two statements, contradictory to each other, which one is true?
the statements are equally true though they seem opposed to each
other. The whole mistake lies in your understanding or rather your
misunderstanding. They apply to your own mental state; your experience
determines your own level of understanding the truth.
Here is an
example for you. Suppose I ask you "When did you come?" your
reply would be, `Just now. Swami!' Isn't it? Analyse your answer. When
you said, "I have come just now", what is it that has come
here? Your "I", does it refers, to yourself or to your body?
You have identified yourself with your body. You think, you are the
body. So, the one that has come now is your body (you are the
body-feeling). Later, you start complaining, "My leg is
paining", "My head reels" and "My hand
shakes". Examine these statements clearly. You say "my
leg", "my hand" "my head" and so on. Now, put
a question to yourself, "who is this my?" When you say,
"This is my hand", it means you are different from your
hand. You are different from the limbs, senses, etc. You are the owner
or master and all the rest are instruments. In these statements, you
indirectly or unconsciously convey that you are .not the body.
Earlier, when you said, "I have come now" you meant the body
and now when you say "my leg", "my head", you mean
you are different from your body.
Similarly in Sadhana
when you view from body identification from the dualistic
standpoint, the first statement, brahma satyam jaganmithya, is true
(body identification I have come now). But, when you speak
from the atmic view, spirit, or non-dualistic approach,
your second statement that you are different from your body (my leg,
my hand, my head. etc) is true.
So, the truth
conveyed in `sarvam visnumayam jagat' holds good. You have to
understand the statement in this sense. You should never consider the
statements of our scriptures as contradictory to each other. They are
stated to meet the needs of people of different mental levels.
Source: SATYOPANISAD VOL - II [Part-III, Mahabharata] by Anil Kumar Kamaraja