Nandi-gaanv kari paran-kuteera | Keenha nivaasu dharam dhur dheera||
Jataa-joot sira munipat dhaari | Mahi khani kus saanthari sanvaari ||
Bharat, a staunch upholder of righteousness, erected a hut of leaves at Nandigram and took up his abode their.
With the hair tied together in a knot at the top of his head and clad in hermit’s robes, he dug the earth low and spread thereon a kusa grass.
Bharat jee’s personality is a multi-faceted one. He is a personification of several spiritual qualities.
Prem moorti – He is an epitome of love. When a person frees himself totally from hatred (dwesh) towards others, he can experience true form of love. Love should be free from domination.
Vivek moorti – Love is incomplete if it is not complemented by appropriate understanding.
Tapo moorti – Inspite of getting the crown of Ayodhya, he lived in extreme penance.
Tyaag moorti – He renounced every luxury with ease.
Seva moorti – He took care of his duties with sincerity.
Japa moorti – His every breath contained the holy name of Bhagwaan Ram.
Vairaagya moorti – His detachment was uncomparable.
Maun moorti – His speech was very balanced. He only spoke when there was a need.
An aspirant’s faith can be guarded by the thoughts given by Sadaguru. We don’t serve sadaguru, but he takes care of us, this is his service in true sense.
Sadaguru’s touch in following ways (touch may not be literal, but may be through his eyes or in his heart) helps a lot in an aspirant’s spiritual progress.
If sadaguru touches the feet of an aspirant, the conduct of the aspirant changes for better and eventually becomes perfect.
If sadaguru touches the eyes, the aspirant gains a unique vision.
If Sadaguru touches the face, the aspirant’s speech becomes controlled. His silence conveys meanings and words convey silence.
If sadaguru touches the stomach, the aspirant becomes able in digesting any kind of situation in his life.
In Bapu’s words, “Ideally, a person’s childhood should be spent in the care of maata (mother), middle life should be spent in the care of a mahatma (a virtuous guide) and later life in the care of paramaatma (God).”
Bapu says, “ Today is the new year according to the Hindi calendar, make a resolution that I will only see a person’s plus points and totally ignore the weak points”
Bharat jee’s love is absolute in the feet of Bhagwaan Ram. Five features distinguish this kind of love.
- Atoot – Continual love without any breaks.
- Akhoot – Love that grows forever.
- Aloot – Love that cannot be conquered by anyone.
- Ajhootth – True love.
- Agut – Love that is beyond boundaries, it is universal.
Bapu says, “ I would like to make it very clear that I am not bounded by any group or any faction. There is no group in my name and I am not attached to anyone except my ShriRamcharitmanas. So, please don’t trust anyone who quotes my name in their group”
If you don’t get a satisfactory answer from your sadaguru, then understand that may be its not the right time or my eligibility (paatrata) is still not up to the mark. Wait for his reply. But if there is no problem in eligibility and still the answer is not convincing enough, then it is the responsibility of Sadaguru about the matter.
Question – when I spend time in Bhajan (worship), I’m free of negative thoughts but when I indulge in my chores, I’m surrounded by negative thoughts. What do I do?
Answer – you have been 50% successful, which is a good sign! To be totally free of negative thoughts, do your chores with such a mentality that performing them is also a form of Bhajan. Spiritual journey involves a lot of patience, so keep trying.
Question – There is a chaupai in Shri Ram Charit Manas – “Japahin naamu jana aarat bhaari | Mitahin kusankat hohin sukhaari”. It is mentioned that chanting of God’s name can free a person from kusankat (bad trouble). So, is there a susankat (good trouble) also?
Answer – Yes, troubles can be of different kinds. For instance, there is some disease in your body; it is called a kusankat. Then you take refuge in the feet of the Lord and hold on to His holy name as the last resort and you get cured of the disease due to His grace. But after getting cured you forget the God’s grace and leave the chanting of His name, then that is called a susankat. Susankat can be experienced, when a person fails to remember God.
Bharat jee’s character can be looked at in three major parts.
- First is the early life in Ayodhya. Childhood, marriage and later the ceremonies after Dasarath jee’s demise and the meetings with Vashishttha jee etc.
- Second is the role in Chitrakoot, where he goes to meet Bhagwaan Ram.
- Third part of Bharat jee’s character is his life in Nandigram. He stayed in Nandigram like a sage, but at the same time took care of people in Ayodhya. We can take inspiration from his life in Nandigram. We cannot and should not copy him, but we can try to follow his ‘vritti’ or inclinations of life. Below mentioned are certain features of his life, by which we can take inspiration and try to follow his footsteps in the spiritual journey.
- Bharat jee had ‘Jataa’ or a cluster of grown hair on his head. – An aspirant’s ‘jataa’ can be in the form of recognition of every given situation as the grace of God.
- Bharat jee’s ‘muni pata’ (dress of a sage) inspires us to live a life free of hypocrisy.
- Bharat jee used to sit in the pit dug in the ground. – An aspirant should try to make a vacuum with the help of Satsang and get rid of all the vices.
- Bharat jee used the bedding of ‘kusa’ (a shrub). – By this, it can be learnt that an aspirant should try to do every activity meticulously (extreme care/perfection), as ‘kusa’ denotes ‘kusalata’ or perfection.
In the chaupai- “Asan basan baasan brat nema | Karat katthin rishi dharam saprema”, his life’s other characters are also indicated, they are as follows.
- ‘Asan’ (His food was only fruits)- Aspirants should gracefully digest the fruits of their deeds (karma) without complaining. It may be success or failure, accept it with happiness.
- ‘Basan’ (He wore clothes like a sage)- Aspirants’ attire should be such that it should neither pollute his own mind and neither the mind of others around.
- ‘Baasan’ (He ate in wooden container)- Aspirants’ conduct should be such that he becomes a subject of everybody’s affection. He should be able to contain acclaim without being proud.
- ‘Vrat’ (He observed certain fasting)- Fasts should be kept with devotion and not just as rituals. Aspirants should take a vow of speaking truth, keeping silence (maun). Make a resolution that we would distribute love and smile to everyone.
- ‘Nema’ (He followed the principle of divine love)- Bapu says, “My sadaguru gave me 5 principles, I would like to share them here.
1. Always speak truth, but do not speak truth harshly.
2. Study Ramayana and Bhagwad Gita everyday.
3. Be very careful of ego or arrogance.
4. Never indulge in scorn or jealousy.
5. Try to observe silence (maun) and chant Harinaam as much as possible.”
Bapu says, “ I don’t really expect but would like to request listeners of katha to try and develop certain qualities.
- Bal-vivek – Don’t try to attend each and every katha at the cost of your duties. Never neglect your personal responsibilities.
- Sthal-vivek– Listener and speaker should maintain the decorum of the place.
- Pal-vivek – Listener should be extremely attentive, he should not become careless even for a fraction of second. Every sutra should be listened to with concentration.
- Phal-vivek – A listener should come with the only aspiration to develop his devotion towards the Lord.
- Mal-vivek – A listener should recognize his faults and make sincere efforts to be free of them.”
Wahe guru..Wahe guru..Wahe guru…
Tyaag (renunciation) can mainly be due to the reasons mentioned below.
- Mooddhata (ignorance).
- Upeksha (contempt).
- Virodhe (discord).
- Vairaagya (asceticism).
Out of the above four, it would be best if a person renounces the world due to the feeling of dispassion or vairaagya. The amount of things that a person gives up is not so important, but the intention behind giving up is important.
There are certain elements that create disorder in a person’s life. But if they are controlled, they cannot do many harms. They are discussed as follows:
- If greed (of money, prestigious posts, material goods etc.) is destroyed, then wishes would come under control. The only want in life would be of Satsang.
- If anger is killed, then violence can be curbed. Tendency of violence can be used positively to kill the faults in oneself.
- If desire is destroyed, then its instruments become worthless. They would not be able to create disturbance in the life.
An easy way to destroy the above three is to chant Harinaam with love.
Mind (mana) is capable of getting totally absorbed (magan) in the Lord, but it becomes restless (chanchal) due to following reasons:
- If a person is suffering from any disease, his mind becomes restless.
- If a person is only used to acclamation and suddenly if he has to face criticism of people, his mind gets disturbed.
- If circumstances do not take a wanted shape, the mind becomes perplexed.
- The mind loses peace when doubt enters, it may be however small though. Intellect should not lose faith in order to keep the mind stable.
Take out some exclusive time daily to cajole (gentle urging especially in the face of reluctance) your mind so that it remains in a positive state. Don’t fight with it to control it forcefully.
To experience true freedom, Tulsidas jee indicates four ways in Vinay patrika.
- Try to be free of bias and prejudices.
- Try to remain satisfied and be careful of excessive wants.
- Try to keep your thoughts as pure as possible.
- Be in constant touch with your Master.
Bapu says, “In my viewpoint, katha listeners are more liable. Responsibility to improve their conduct with others and to behave with love with all, lies with them. People coming in Satsang should shoulder this responsibility with sincerity.”
Bapu says, “ first of all, I want to congratulate the Indian cricket team for their outstanding performance. My best wishes to the Indian captain and the entire team. I also appreciate the sporty spirit of the host country….Rashtra devo bhav….”
Tulsidas jee says that Bharat jee is the subject of Bhagwaan Ram’s love. Taking inspiration from him, we should also think that how do we become eligible for God’s affection. There are certain factors that can help us to become eligible.
- Dil (Heart) – One has to have a heart, not just as an organ to pump the blood, but it should be a place full of love for all.
- Sheel (Modesty) – One has to be genuinely modest.
- Bal (Strength) – One has to be have strength of unbending patience to maintain faith, even if the beloved becomes indifferent. It is commonly seen that we pray a lot but we are unable to wait patiently for Him.
- devotion has to be so concentrated that it grows every moment.
To contain God’s affection or to become a ‘paatra’ of his love (like a vessel contains nectar), one has to be free of loopholes of hypocrisy and deceit and dirt of censure and jealousy. The paatra has to be deep enough in order to be full of grace.
According to a Jain saint, a person should take refuge in the feet of the one possessing following qualities:
1. Endless compassion.
2. Comprehensive knowledge.
3. Countless virtues.
4. Free of any bindings.
5. A Master of all.
Raja Ram Ram Ram, SitaRam Ram Ram…..
Ram katha has two qualities. Firstly, it is “laayak” or capable. It has capability to change a person’s life for better. Secondly, it is “daayak” or provider. It is not miser; it showers sutras for all.
In Bapu’s words, “I cannot understand that how do people, coming in satsang, fight with each other. I would declare such people as insane. I really don’t understand where does there modesty (sheel), their sutras etc go..”
A Zen sect saint was once asked that what is the essence of religion? He thought and replied that it can be said in five words, then again thought and said that three words can convey the essence of religion but stopped again before disclosing the final answer. He concluded and at last said that just one word is enough. People asked him what was that word, he said you’ll find it in ‘You’. Similarly, if seen in Shri Ram Charit Manas, five words can be listed as essentials:
But the most vital from the above five is “Prem”. If Prem is present, all the other four will follow. This one comprises of the rest four.
Bharat jee’s love towards Bhagwaan Ram was free of despair. Even in the absence of his beloved, his love grew every day. His mind was never in a depressed state. If devotion is ardent enough, then an aspirant can find joy in japa (chanting), fasting (vrat) etc. Continual remembrance of the Lord is most important.
Every ritual of worship (pooja), however short, should be full of fondness towards the almighty. A pooja without love may just be a formality. In fact, every activity done with love becomes worship.
Bapu says, “live life with mohabbat (love) and not with majboori (compulsion)”
Question – why do you normally remain silent, when away from ‘Vyas-peetth’?
Bapu’s answer – Words are synonyms of God according to the Upanishads. They should not be used carelessly, save them as much as possible. I request katha listeners also to practice maun (silence) once a week or fortnight or as per your convenience. It saves a lot of positive energy. There is a strength in remaining silent. Speaking only in necessary circumstances is also a kind of ‘maun’.
Ralph Waldo Emerson was once asked that whom would you define as truly great? He replied that following qualities make a person genuinely great, even if he is not recognized by the society:
- A person who loves children and children also reciprocate his love in an equal manner.
- A person whose nature is applauded by the learned people of the society.
- A person who is declared great by the section of authentic critics.
- A person who gives respect to his ally, who has actually betrayed him.
- A person who maintains his discretionary understanding and helps the society to be free of misconceptions.
- A person who knows and enjoys poetry, literature and art in real sense.
- A person who is never forgotten by the society even after his demise.
There are mainly four aspects of an individual, if they are dealt with proper insight they become tools of a successful lifetime. They should be given importance (mahatva), but should not be allowed to become obsessions (mamatva):
- Dhrama (Religion) – is important to a person but one should be careful that he does not become fanatic about it.
- Arth (Wealth) – it is accepted that money is important, but it is more important that one remains careful about checking the greed for it.
- Kaam (Desires) – it is important to continue the system of mankind. But it should not become the only motto of life.
- Moksha (Salvation) – it is a great state, but do not worry too much about it. Just keep doing Satsang.
A person who is aware of attachments and remains appropriately aloof from the above four, he is a Saadhu.
While remembering the almighty, when each cell of the body experiences joy of His presence in the heart, eyes overflow with tears and the tongue cannot do without chanting His name, an aspirant should understand that this state is somewhat similar to Bharat jee’s state in Nandigram.
Bharat jee is a Saadhu. It means that he is a ‘Sanyasi’ (a sage) as well as a ‘Bhikshuk’ (a monk). Lets start today’s katha with the sutras of Niravana upanishad and offer salutations to Bharat jee and try to take inspiration with the help of these.
- Niraalamb peetthah – Bharat jee’s sole refuge was towards the “paaduka” given by Bhagwaan Ram. His faith was entirely focussed and he did not look anywhere else for any support. One should cooperate with others, but should not depend on anyone else except your subject of worship. A person should serve people according to one’s capacity without depending on others.
- Sanyog deeksha – Bharat jee was in constant union with Bhagwaan Ram. Unbroken alliance with the supreme auspicious element (shubh tatva) is a form of deeksha (initiation ceremony). If an aspirant is miles away, but he feels united with the master, it is an eternal alliance that is free from the grief of separation. This kind of alliance becomes successful when Sadaguru gets attached to the shishya.
- Viyogo-padeshah – Bharat jee’s devotion was unscathed by the splendour of Ayodhya. Keeping unnecessary luxuries at bay can prove to be an instrument of attaching oneself with the divine. Distance from excessive materialistic goods can help an aspirant to keep his mind stable and healthy and can further lead to spiritual development.
- Deeksha santosh paavanam cha – Bharat jee never experienced any kind of dearth in his life. If an aspirant truly allies himself with the master, he experiences total contentment. He also feels that his heart has been so purified that there is no scope of any kind of pollution.
- Dwaadash aaditya avalokanamm – Bharat jee’s life is illuminated with the radiance of God’s grace. An aspirant feels the God’s glow in his life provided his surrender is sincere.
Question- why is it that Agni (fire) is chosen for doing aarti ?
Answer – Aarti is performed with the help of all the five elements of universe, not just fire. According to the actual ceremony, some fragrance is offered before aarti, that is an indication of earth element. Fire (agni) cannot exist without air element. It is performed in free space, which is aakash (sky) element and finally it ends with jal phttp://moraribapu.org/wp-admin/post.php?post=12809&action=edit#arikrama (water element).
There is a science behind the ‘Mala’ (rosary). It exists in every religion in some form or the other. An ideal mala is complete with 108 beads with a meru (a central bead). If it is not convenient to use a full mala, use the one with the number of beads whose total ends in 9, for instance- a mala of 18, 27, 63 , 72 beads. If a person uses a mala of 108 beads and chants on it 200 times a day, it comes to 21,600 chants. This number is that of a person’s breath in 24 hours. Mala is a successful instrument to call out to the Almighty.
In Bharat jee’s character, there are four prominent features:
1. “Samarpan”- He surrendered was well thought and not due to unawareness or hatred towards the world.
2. “Smaran”- He was totally immersed in the remembrance of Bhagwaan Ram. His devotion was so perpetual that even Bhagwaan Ram could not help himself from chanting Bharat jee’s name.
3. “Sanrakshan”- He was guarded by the ‘Paaduka’ given by Bhagwaan Ram in Chitrakoot. They took care of Bharat jee’s wellbeing. ‘janu juga jaamik prajaa praan key…’
4. “Su-aacharan”- His conduct was so flawless that even great sage like Vashishttha jee described it as the essence of religion.
Question – We chant Harinaam but cannot become concentrated, what should be done about it?
Bapu’s Answer – If we understand this question’s answer from Shri Ram Charit Manas, we would never feel the guilt or worry about lack of concentration. Bhagwaan Ram discusses nine types of bhakti with Shabari jee, in that he says, ‘mantra jaap mama driddh biswaasa..’ This is the soul of bhakti that says that one does not need any concentration in japa (chanting), one only needs to have firm faith. There is no formulated procedure (vidhi) for doing japa; the only requirement is total faith in the feet of the Lord. Like a child calls out to his mother, there is no intentionally build up concentration neither a procedure for it; its only the faith that matters the most, so do not worry about concentration.
Faith can be of two types:
- Maana hua (accepted faith) – that may be prone to the influence from others. It would be there till everything happens according to one’s choice, but it is so fragile that it can collapse when something happens in contrast with one’s choice.
- Jaana hua (experienced faith) – that is immovable in however adverse kind of situation. This kind of tested faith is not blind in nature.
Katha listeners should be free of expectations pertaining to sutras or bhajans or examples etc. Try to keep oneself vacant from inside in order to absorb the sutras properly.
Bapu says, “I would like to request the parents to teach Sanskrit shlokas to your children. Don’t force them but inspire them tenderly to learn some stotras (like Shiv mahimnah stotra should be recited Shraavan Maas). It will create pleasant vibrations around the place.
Jai jai shri Ramchandra avadh ke dulaare…..