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If you want to be perfect...

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One day little children were brought to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked those who brought them. Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." Then Jesus placed his hands on them and blessed them.

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Wow! We may ask: what is this quality that gives the child automatic ticket to the gate of the Kingdom of God? Take some time and watch the little child lost in the fun of life. What do you see? Total selflessness! With no sense of “I” and “mine” the little child is rapt in the bliss of Being. Totally unattached to life, the child lives in the fullness of Life.

Then a certain rich young man came up to Jesus and asked, "Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?"

"Why do you ask me about what is good?" Jesus replied. "There is only One who is good.” Surprising, isn’t it? But that is the Truth. Only God is Good! And we can be good only when we realize this Oneness with the One.

Then Jesus said to the young man: “If you want to enter life, obey the commandments."

"Which ones?" the man inquired. Jesus replied, "Do not kill” (the Vedic law of Ahimsa) “Do not commit adultery” (the Vedic command of Brahmacharia) “Do not steal” (the Vedic law of aparigraha) “Do not give false testimony” (the Vedic command: speak the truth, follow righteousness) “Honor your father and mother” (the Vedic admonition: Mother is Divine, Father is Divine) and “Love your neighbor as yourself ” (the Vedic injunction: Do to others what you would like done unto you)

"All these I have kept since I was a child" the young man said. "What do I still lack?" Hmnn! Let us wait a minute. How many of us can honestly say this to our Beloved Swami! “I have kept all the Vedic or Bible or Sathya Sai Code of conducts, etc, (they are all the same) from my childhood?” This simply means that this rich young man is no ordinary person. He is indeed a great Soul.

Jesus was deeply pleased with this young man. He looked at him with love and he wished God would bestow on him still greater blessings. And He saw in him one lack. In spite of his great wealth and despite his strict adherence to the path of righteousness, he still had no Peace: that undisturbed stillness of bliss which the world and its objects cannot give.

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Jesus then gave him the great invitation: a call to Divinity, a ticket to ‘Prashanthi Nilayam’, the Abode of Supreme peace. Jesus said to the man, "If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me."

My Jesus! The man was shocked. His mind reeled round his bank accounts, his numerous estates and companies, his wife and children, his honor and social status… all the comfort and pleasures… to give up all these and come and follow this wondering homeless recluse? His face bowed down with the burden of decision. His heart was beating fast. It was a moment with momentum – a divine opportunity not different from the critical choices which made the Buddha and St. Francis of Assisi forsake their Kingly Estates in search for perfection.

Meanwhile Jesus stood patiently looking at him…waiting… for his “yes”. But he walked away sadly. What a life time opportunity that was missed! How many people today are able to accept these same commands from the Avatar of the age: “Go… sell all you have… give them to the poor… come … follow me.”

When Swami calls us for interview He always says: “Go”. What is “go”? To go is to let go! How can we ‘go’ when we can’t ‘let go’? This is the first step in the path of self surrender: to let go! When we let go, then we can sell all, then we can give all, then we can come and take refuge at the Divine lotus feet, (Manasa bajare Guru charanam), then we can surrender to that lotus feet who will take us across the ocean of samsara – circle of birth and death.

When the man had left, Jesus said to his disciples, "I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

This was another shocker for the disciples. “In that case” they asked, "Who then can be saved?" The Jews looked upon wealth as a blessing from God, a reward for being good, a sign for His special favour. If the rich - those who from the disciple’s point of view seemed to be first in the line for salvation - cannot be saved, then who in the world can be saved? Jesus looked at them intently and said, “From the human point of view, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible.”

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In reality, it is not just the rich who have difficulty, for perfection is not possible for any one from a human point of view. But from God’s View Point, everything is possible! So perfection is all about the optical medium with which we see Reality. When we see with the human binoculars we see ‘I’ and ‘mine’, ‘you’ and ‘him’, ‘male’ and ‘female’, ‘rich’ and ‘poor’, etc. This sense of duality is the illusion that creates the tangles of attachment. Like this rich young man we have lots of attachments. This young man probably did not know that he was deeply attached to his wealth. This is also true of many of our attachments. You cannot tell what you are attached to until it is disturbed.

Swami often shakes our attachments in order that we may not only become aware of them, but also to let go of them. But we do not need to wait for this shaking. We must adopt an attitude of mind whereby we are always ready to let go! What is this attitude? It is the sense of “I” and “mine”. It is this sense that we have to let go.

Some feel that detachment means letting go of material possessions. But this is not detachment. In any case it is not possible to let go of the objects of the world. This is because objects have no independent existence apart from us. Where can we run away from them? Be it in the forest or in the city, they are there. Come to Prashanthi Nilayam and they are there too. Can we go anywhere to escape them? No! What has to be let go are not the objects but this sense of possession, this attitude that things belong to us, this feeling that make things happen for us…

When the clothing of “I” and “Mine” is stripped away, then we will see Perfection because we will see from the Divine View Point: All is One! There is no other, no owner and owned, no you and me! All is One, be alike to everyone! This is salvation.

Jesus is telling us today:

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It is not the doing…
It is the sense “I am the doer”;
Let go the doer-ship.

It is not the wealth…
It is the sense “I am the owner”;
Let go the ownership.

It is not the objects…
It is the sense “it is mine”;
Let go the “I” and “mine”.

This is the only way to perfection.


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Vol 5 Issue 12 - DECEMBER 2007
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