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 The Purpose of Avatar

Sathya Sai Speaks

When the Divine comes down as Avatar (a Divine incarnation) - whether it is as Rama or Krishna, or any other form - it is only for one purpose. You all recognise only the momentary results of the advent. But you should note that the Divine comes as Avatar only to teach mankind the truth about love.

"Oh man, it is because you lack love and are filled with selfishness that the world is plunging in so much conflict and chaos. It is only when you develop love and the spirit of sacrifice that you will realise the divinity that is in the human." The man who has no spirit of thyaga (sacrifice) will be a prey to all ills. A man without love is a living corpse. It is love and sacrifice which make man divine.

Love alone is the fruit of love. Love is its own witness. There is no trace of self-interest in it. Because love exists, for its own sake, it has no fear. It is to teach humanity the way of love that Avatars come in the world. The world displays the diversity that has emanated from the One. The Divine demonstrates the unity that subsumes the diversity. Recognition of this "Unity in Diversity" can be learnt only from the Divine.

The Krishna Avatar has been described in various ways: as a sport of the Divine in human form, as an ideal for the world, as a sacred ruler, as a manifestation of the Atma (spirit). The Divine comes as Avatar to proclaim the pure, unsullied and selfless love of devotees towards God. People may consider that the Avatar's activities include punishment of the wicked, protection of the good, weeding out of unrighteousness and restoration of right conduct.

This is how they may look at the activities of the Avatar. But that is not the way the Lord sees things. There is nothing bad in God's view. Hence, there should be no hatred or ill-will towards any being. It is only when you love all, that you can be said to love God.

Think of the Divine at all Times

Sathya Sai Speaks

The devotees’ feelings determine his concept of God. When a devotee prays: "Oh Lord! Don't you see my sufferings? Don't you hear my lamentations? Can't you see the troubles I am going through?" The Lord appears to him only as a pair of eyes. He is not able to see the full form of the Lord.

The state of mind of spiritual aspirants today is like this: when they are in meditation they appear like yogis. After the meditation is over, they return to their daily activities and are immersed in mundane pleasures. This is not the way of life preached by Lord Krishna. He declared: "Sathatham Yoginah" (Be Yogis at all times). What we witness today is: "Yogis in the morning, bhogis (epicureans) during the day and rogis (sick) at night."

How can such persons ever remain yogis at all times? You have to think of the Divine at all times, in all situations, in whatever you see, do, say or experience. To pray to God when you are comfortable and to blame God when you are in trouble reflects your selfish and narrow outlook…

The Gopikas' Devotion

Lord Krishna once enacted a small drama to demonstrate how the devotion of the illiterate cowherdesses (Gopikas) of Brindavan was deeper and fuller than that of His consorts, Rukmini or Sathyabhama, or the sage Narada.

He pretended that he was suffering from a severe headache, and that only the application of the dust from the feet of a devotee would cure Him. Neither Rukmini, Sathyabhama or Narada were willing to offer the dust from their feet, as they felt that they would be condemned to live in hell if they allowed the dust of their feet to pollute the Divine head of Krishna.

Sathya Sai Speaks

When Narada approached the Gopikas, they had no hesitation in collecting the dust of their feet, because their only concern was to relieve their beloved Krishna’s pain instantly, without caring about what happened to them as an outcome.

Even though they were warned by Narada about the dire consequences of their action, they told him that they were not concerned about the worst that might happen to them, if only their Krishna would be relieved of pain.

The Ways of the Divine

Krishna's pain was gone the moment the Gopikas offered the dust of their feet. Narada realized that the totally unselfish devotion exhibited by the Gopikas was Parama Bhakti (the highest form of devotion).

The Divine exists in everything, in every being, in every foot, as well as in the dust on the foot. He is also in the one whom you may consider as a thief. The troubles besetting the world today cannot be removed except through the promotion of unity.

This unity can be promoted only through love. There is nothing that cannot be accomplished through love. Love is God. God is Love. Live in Love. Here is an illustration on how love works. For the past fifteen days I could not move about without feeling a "shock." Today, when I came out and saw the happy faces of the devotees I was filled with joy and forgot the state of my body altogether. This is how the Divine works to experience your love and fill you with love in return. There can be no joy where there is no love. The Gopikas were filled with such love that they saw Krishna in all that they did.

Fill Your Hearts with Love

When you fill your hearts with love, you have no ill-will towards anyone. Cultivate the faith that the Divine is in everyone. Surrender to the Divine in a spirit of dedication. The symbolic meaning in the relations between Krishna and the Gopikas is this: The heart is the Brindavan (in each person). One's thoughts are like the Gopikas. The Atma (spirit) is Krishna. Bliss is the sport of Krishna. Everyone must convert his heart into a Brindavan and consider the indwelling Atma as Krishna.

Sai Chinna Katha

Every action should be regarded as a leela (sport) of Krishna. Krishnastami is celebrated by offering to Krishna Paramaannam (rice cooked with jaggery). The real meaning of Paramaannam is Annam (food) relating to Param (Supreme). Paramaannam is sweet. Your love must be sweet. What you offer to God must be your sweet love. Your love must be all embracing. This is the foremost message of the Avatar.

- Divine Discourse on Krishnastami Day, August 3, 1988


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Vol 6 Issue 08 - AUGUST 2008
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