Infallible technique of improving human behaviour
Satsang of Shri Hans Ji Maharaj in Delhi, India, 18th November, 1963.
Reprinted from And It Is Divine
From his birth to his death a man tries to attain constant happiness and hence to be immune from troubles and suffering. In most cases he does not succeed. Instead he continues to get himself tied up in doubts and anxieties. His periods of happiness are only short-lived and true happiness, like the mirage, remains an illusion for him, but which nevertheless he continues to chase, wherever he thinks it can be found. Modern society with all its good laws and civilisation, its scientific inventions and discoveries, its technological innovations and the conquest of nature, all represent attempts by mankind to find happiness. But we can see by looking around us that their actual results are only unrest and unhappiness, anxiety and frustration. Real happiness has not been obtained, peace has not been found, and suffering has not been removed, Instead the situation has arisen when the very existence of the human race is threatened. Man, who before was so confident, is now bewildered by his own failure, and he is now looking around himself not knowing what to do next.
The first step to saving the human race from self destruction is to find out the cause of this failure. If you think about it you will see that the main causes are not in the world around us but inside man’s own mind where inadequate discrimination and too often mistaking the pleasures obtained from the senses for true happiness have led to all the troubles that you see in the world, in society, and in the individual. Because of his misunderstanding of these important yet elementary truths, he tries to find happiness and peace in ideas and actions where they can never be found, and the obvious result is frustration and dissatisfaction. The more he tries to get his satisfaction in the wrong directions the greater his frustration and dissatisfaction, when he finally has to acknowledge his failure. Today people search for peace outside, for happiness in material prosperity, and for love in situations which only lead to fear and jealousy. Looking for happiness in material prosperity only causes lust, greed, envy, argument and conflict, and turns man’s attention away from virtuous living and right thinking to the accumulation of material wealth in its many forms, often irrespective of the means adopted.
A man is now judged by what he has rather than by what he is and this has naturally caused corruption as men compete for wealth, position and power, which in turn cause turmoil and tension. There does not seem to be the least appreciation that had peace and happiness been in riches or power, Lord Buddha would not have renounced His kingdom, and Jesus would not have taught as He did, while on the other hand all the wealthy and powerful people in the world would be living in a state of pure joy. But look at the anxiety on their faces and the agitation in their minds; this is proof that they have not even had a glimpse of what real peace and happiness are. The truth is that peace and eternal bliss are a sublime faculty of mind. They are to be found in the mind but they are never to be found in material things. Countless examples have been provided in the pages of history which illustrate this truth, but man ignores them all, and continues as blindly as ever, searching for peace in all the wrong places. The true king is one who has conquered his mind, not one who reigns over many material possessions. Such a one even loses the ability to sleep peacefully.
Permanent peace can never be provided by social, administrative or financial measures, nor even in schemes to improve the environment by conquering problems like over-population or pollution. Permanent peace lies within oneself and that is the only place where it can be found. It is really very strange that in the world today man’s preoccupation with wealth, power and sensual enjoyments takes him far from good living and right thinking, yet sermons and lectures are delivered day in and day out on improvement in human behaviour, and the cultivation of fearlessness, love and universal brotherhood. Competition for love, power and sensual enjoyments can never harmonise human interests and make men work together with brotherly love, yet the diversity of interests which competition leads to can never end competition and conflict.
Dr. S. Radha Krishnan, the Vice-President of India, has said, "The crisis which is facing us is a human one and what is necessary is an improvement in human behaviour." But nobody is actually suggesting how human behaviour can be improved. Can it be improved by mere lectures? Can it be improved by the laws of the State? Can it be improved by publicity campaigns and advertising? Can it be improved by negotiations around the table? How can it be improved? There appears to be complete ignorance on this subject. The natural conclusion is that there is no answer in sight to today’s human crisis and that tomorrow will bring the annihilation of the human race. To save the human race, therefore, it is absolutely necessary that a method be found out which can bring about instantaneous improvement in human behaviour and the only way is to acquire complete control of our minds by the acquisition of equanimity, tranquillity, stability, and belief in God. But true belief in God cannot be cultivated without His practical realisation, nor can the mind be controlled without infusing it with the Divine Light and concentrating it on His Real Name. What is this Divine Light, what is the Real Name of God, and how they can be known practically are pertinent
questions in this connection.
Divine Light is self-effulgent light which is ever-existent in all beings and which is responsible for life in living beings. It illuminates sun, moon, fire and stars. This very light is responsible for the creation of the Universe.
To describe it, different words have been used in different literatures. In the Vedas, it has been called "Vergo", in the Upanishads and. the Gita it is called "Jyoti-Swaroop", in the Ramayana it is called "PranamPrakesh", in the Holy Koran it is called "Noor-e-Elahi", in the Bible it is called "Divine Light", in the Guru Granth Saheb it is called "Chandna", all synonymous with self-effulgent light. But this Light is so subtle that it cannot be seen with these material eyes. It is practically seen with the Divine Eye alone. Every human being possesses this Divine Eye but it remains closed. The Divine Light is seen when the Divine Eye is opened. Lord Krishna opened the Divine Eye of Arjuna and showed him the Divine Light. Sujata, the milk-maid, opened the Divine Eye of Lord Buddha and showed Him the Divine Light within Himself. Similarly Lord Jesus Christ, Hazrat Mohammed, Swami Ramakrishna, and others, all saw the Divine Light with the Divine Eye. When the Divine Light is seen and the mind is infused into it, it attains equanimity and stability. We all know that a newly-born child, who certainly has a guileless mind, takes delight in the light, and that he cries in darkness. This is because his mind, being untarnished by the ways of the world, loves light. Man’s mind naturally loves light and loves to be infused in it, because subconsciously he knows that light is his true nature with which he
was once merged and from which he is temporarily separated. When the mind is turned from that Divine Light within, and the Inner Eye becomes closed through lack of usage, mind then turns towards worldy impurities, it is plunged into the world of inconstancy-and unsteadiness, and all Sorts of troubles naturally and inevitably arise therefrom. The mind itself takes on the impure, flickering qualities of the objects to which it attaches itself and it is these mental impurities which are simply and quickly burned away by infusion in Divine Light. As an impure gold is purified by melting in fire, in the same way the impure mind obtains purity by infusion in Divine Light.
The Real Name of God is also ever-existent and self-dependent in all living beings. It is the only life generator. The difference between a living body and a dead body is the presence and absence respectively of the Holy Name. The Holy Name cannot be written in any alphabet nor can it be uttered. It is the eternal and secret sound of a vibration which has to be known, and just as fire has the inherent capacity to burn, so the Holy Name has the inherent capacity to purify the mind. Hence it changes a man’s nature, making him pure and shining with bliss.
Only Knowledge of and meditation on this Real Name of God can give a man this inner quality of certain Knowledge of the Truth of Life which manifests itself as a radiant and wise personality. All the scriptures of the world refer to this Holy Name, the secret vibration of life within. In the Upanishads it is called Nam (Only Name), in the Ramayana it is called Mahamantra (Great Word), in the Holy Koran it is called Pak Nam (True Name), in the Guru Granth Saheb (the great Sikh scripture) it is called Sat Nam (True Name) and in the Holy Bible it is called Magicabala (Great Word), or Holy Word of God. It is the Name of God which can be meditated upon constantly without interruption, while we are asleep and while we are awake, while we are conscious and while we are unconscious. No other action can be done at all times and in all circumstances. But meditation on this Holy Name is possible at all times and in all circumstances, if one has had revealed to one the sacred technique.
The question to be asked now is how the Divine Light can be seen and how this Holy Name can be known. The answer is that just as a candle can be set alight by the touch of a living flame, so that instantaneous vision this Divine Light can only be achieved by the touch of an Enlightened Soul and infallibly so. And so with the primordial vibration, the Real Name of God, for, being unable to be written it cannot be found in books, and, being absolutely unspeakable, it cannot be heard from human lips.
It is a mistake to believe that the actual utterance or mental repetition of any of the descriptive names of God can purify the heart and bring about the vision of Divine Light. If this were so, then the majority of the world would certainly be enlightened and peace, brotherhood and understanding would prevail, for most of the world reveres and pays homage to one or other of the many verbal descriptions for God. For the Name is God Himself within man, and not just a verbal representation of Him. Another commonly held but mistaken belief is that the Divine Light can seen by the grace of great masters who have left their mortal bodies. No matter how great the reputation of famous surgeon, if he has left his body he cannot perform even the simplest operation. A living patient must have a living doctor. Likewise only the Living Master can reveal the Divine Light and Holy Word. "As long as I am in the world I am the Light of the world", said Lord Jesus and all great masters who revealed that Light within their disciples said the same thing. If it is true that Enlightenment can be obtained from a Master who no longer exists in physical form, then all those who today follow and revere Lord Krishna and Lord Christ would have this True Knowledge of Holy Word and Divine Light. But this is not the case. Christ and Krishna both embodied the Light and revealed the Light, but only to those lovers of God who were alive at the same time. Likewise for us today it is necessary to find the Living Perfect Master. When the touch of an Enlightened Soul is absolutely necessary to gain this Knowledge, how can it be possible to acquire it from a Guru who is not occupying a mortal body?
The last question is how the Knowledge can be obtained from the Enlightened Soul. Lord Krishna said, "Attain this Knowledge by all means. If you prostrate yourself at the Feet of the Satguru, render Him all forms of service, and ask Him with a guileless heart again and again, then the Satguru will become pleased and infuse this Knowledge into you." This is the only way to acquire this Knowledge. There is absolutely no other way.
Thus we can see that the only method to being about an improvement in human behaviour leading to world peace and unity is acquisition of this True Knowledge from the Living Satguru. Individual man is the primary unit in society. No peace can be obtained by an agitated and unsteady mind, and no society can be peaceful and loving unless the individual members of the society become peaceful and loving. It is often asked whether it is possible to impart this Knowledge to every single individual. The answer is that most people of the world have some academic education which usually takes many years to obtain, but this True Knowledge can be acquired even in the twinkling of an eye. So naturally it will not take much time to disseminate this Knowledge to every individual, provided adequate facilities for reaching the people are made available.
Since Divine Light is seen within and the Holy Name of God is known within, the realisation of this Divine Light and the Knowledge of this Holy Name gives a man complete understanding of the source of life itself. The entire universe emanates from this source of life, and so by knowing that all is known, constant and unchanging peace and happiness are found, and the deathless state of self-realisation is attained.