|Dr. Robert Puff|
Before presenting the Selections, the following was an invitation to participate in a particular consecration of Swami Veda (click here for relevant photos)
Look what you're going to be able to attend!
By the Grace of Gurudeva Swami Rama of the Himalayas you are cordially
invited to participate in the consecration (pattabisheka) of Shri
Swami Veda Bharati ji to the position of Maha-mandaleshvara in the Niranjani
Akhara of the Swami Order presided over by the Acharya Maha-mandaleshvara Shri 108
Swami Punyanandaji Maharaj on the 15th of March 1999 at Taponidhi
Panchayati Niranjani Akhara Mayapur, Haridwar---INDIA
10.00 am Worship: Rudra-abhisheka given by other Maha-mandaleshvaras
11.15 pm Bhandara-feeding the sadhus
What is a Maha-mandaleshvara?
The position is somewhat paralleled to that of PHRA MAHA (Head Monk) in
the Thai Buddhist monastic orders. The title means the Head of a Circle
(Mandala) of the Swamis, however without any defined regional or
The Swami Order is divided into two different parallel structures. The
structure established by Shankaracharya divided the Swamis into:
a) Dasha-namis (those of ten names), Bharati, Saraswati, etc
b) Four regional seats, with a fifth one in the Holy City of Kanchi-puram,
together with their subordinate Sects.
The other, the Akhara System, was consolidated for historical reasons by
Shri Vidyaranya Muni, who is historically the most important name in
Vedanta and in the Swami Order after Shankaracharya. He was not only a
great yogi, philosopher, savant, holding the position of Shankaracharya
in Shringeri (? 13th Century A.D.), he was also the founder and spiritual
guide of the Vijayanagar empire.
Nowadays, the Shankaracharyas remain the influential guides in the
Southern regions of India. The system weakened in the North many
centuries ago, again, for historical reasons. The seven Akhara sub-orders
hold sway in the North, guided by their maha-mandaleshvaras. The largest,
the Niranjani Akhara, to which Gurudeva Swami Rama also belonged, is one
of the two oldest and largest. It has at present 16 maha-mandaleshvaras.
Among themselves they also have a head (acharya maha-mandaleshvara). As
stated above, there are no territorial or administrative divisions.
Frequently the maha-mandaleshvaras meet and confer, and agree upon
matters of common interest. The maha-mandaleshvaras of the Niranjani
Akhara are the most learned; still passing on different areas of
knowledge, composing original philosophical Sanskrit texts, establishing
and guiding institutions. They also maintain financial support for the
Akhara of their Order.
Absolutely unsolicited, Swami Veda Bharati is being conferred the
position and thereby joins a peer group of the highest leading Swamis of
Swami Veda was totally surprised when he was approached with an offer of
the position, repeatedly asked, and finally decided to accept in the hope
that thereby he may have another instrument at his disposal to serve his
Swami Veda's ashram is in Rishikesh, India, having been passed to him by his venerable master, Sri Swami Rama. He functions as spiritual director of the Himalayan Institute Hospital, founded by Swami Rama. Swami Veda is a former professor of Sanskrit and Indian religions. He has written numerous books and produced over 3000 hours of audio recordings on all aspects of spiritual life and philosophy. His students and devotees are of all religions and are found around the world.
When you say: "I am walking, I am seeing, I am hearing," behind those diverse experiences and actions there is a common denominator: "I am." Each action flowing from you to the surrounding persons and objects and each experience from them to you begins with the affirmation: "I am." All those actions and experiences are tangible and can be analysed, but "I am" is the feel of your being, the being of the force field that you are.
Every day, before launching the boat of your body, before rowing it with the oars of your mind across the flowing rivers of actions and experiences, stand on the tranquil banks of your soul for a moment and know that: "I am." Close your eyes. Seal your lips. Still your tongue and say in your mind: "I am." Then ask yourself: "who is that declaring this I-ness, this being? Who whispered from within the depths of the well of my existence: 'I am?'" This is truly your only question.
May your meditation give you the answer that answers it all.
DANCE TO THE COSMIC TUNE
Driftwood floats at the mercy of every little ripple. A ship, expertly navigated, withstands mountainous waves. Little irritations and small emotions are for driftwood, not for the ships that free will navigates.
If you must be of earth, be the whole planet and not a tiney speck of dust. Be not a spark, but a conflagration; not a pool, but an ocean. If your self is little, a thousand sorrows a day will drown your specks of dust, a thousand little storms will extinguish your flame.
Let your meditation help you grow, help you know your vast, expansive Self, so that neither little sorrows make you weep nor small joys make you dance. Let your mind dance, indeed, but to the Cosmic Tune. Why is your meditation troubled by the small ripples of things of limited consequence when a still mind in medtation will bring you the Infinite?
If you must deal with problems this day, I wish you truly great problems, so you may find great solutions from the ocean of our expansive Self. I wish you an undisturbed mind, balance and equanimity.
DRAW YOURSELF TO YOURSELF
Draw yourself to yourself. Empty your mind of all things from sources outside you and look into your mind for a force that may be entirely yours. A body in meditation is totally relaxed. All muscles are limp, there is no twitching, no movement. The mind has no memories and, therefore, no anxieties. When the mind has no anxieties the breath flows evenly and smoothly. All the hollows of the mind are filled and there are no sharp edges. The brain becomes clear. The thoughts do not arise at random.
That evenness of the mind brings an evenness of emotions, and a quality of equilibrium develops in your personality. That equilibrium may last for a moment or two while in meditation, and initially that is so. But as your meditations prosper they begin to permeate your personality and through all your thoughts, words and physical deeds your natural equilibrium begins to show.
Drain all waters from the Pacific Ocean and fill them with liquid light -- these are the unfathomable depths of our mind.
I wish you a dive into the depths of an ocean called consciousness, filled with light.
Your breath is a river that flows between the twin banks of your nostils. The physical tributary of this river starts in the fire-pool of your solar plexus. The vital spirtual tributary begins in the cave behind your forehead. Through all your expirations and inspirations your vital energy delcares: "I am life. I am awareness. I am a being. I am not of depressions and death. I am the very self of eternal hope."
This, your breath, is a mere waft of breeze if it begins only in the navel and the lungs. When you know, however, its source is in your mind and in turn it generates mental power, it is a ray of sun, a winged soul in flight. Then is says: "I am. I am who I am. Before Abraham was, I am." It sings the hymn of all here and now as a song of eternity.
This day I wish you, through your breath, the knowledge of the changeless in the changing, and of the eternity in his time. I wish you that stillness which comes when you hear for a long time the flow of the mental tributary of breath. May the doors between your eyebrows open to the mental chambers of hidden wisdom and inspiration.
The silence of speech is not silence.
Silence of mind is true silence.
Silence is the infinity of the Word that is God.
In the beginning was that silence; that silence was in God.
When the words are spoken from a mind
that is truly still,
silent and tranquil, they are inspired words, sending
their power echoing for centuries around the globe.
In the silence of your meditation such words shall arise.
In the practice of silence, only truth
Speak truth; speak that which is pleasant.
Do not speak unpleasant truth; do not speak pleasant untruth.
This is the ancient law of silence, that all spoken words
come true when they arise from the depths of silence.
WHO WATCHES WHILE YOU SLEEP?
At night do you ever say to someone, "Please turn on the lights so that I may see my dreams more clearly"? In what light do you see your dreams? That light is no candle flame. It is your own very Self, for you are a self-luminous being, the source of your body's vitality, the origin of your mind's awareness. This Self never sleeps.
Even though the weary shallow surfaces of the mind succumb to rest, there is someone other, ever-wakeful, ever-watchful. There is someone other who governs your heart-beat and your breath, who prevents you from falling from your bed during your worst nighmares, and who wakes you to the distress cry of your child in the next room. Someone other.
Ask yourself the question, "Who am I?" Who utters this word, "I"? Whose light gives you the awareness to say the word, "I"? As you begin to answer this question, you will begin to dive deeper than the shallow surfaces of your mind and to to the true home of consciousness, with its free volition, from where flickers the light of the word "I."
I wish you today identification with the silent watcher within, your true Self.
|Dr. Robert Puff|