Body is the temple of God
Puttaparthi, Prasanthi Nilayam (Krishnashtami )
Worship alone is not devotion. Just going to a temple is not devotion. Consider your body itself as a temple. What is the temple of God? The physical body is not a permanent or static temple, it moves. Wherever this moving temple goes, God resides there. Recognize this great truth. A number of difficulties and problems come to the body. This physical body is made up of five elements, we do not know when this is going to leave the world. This is not going to give perfume, being full of foul smelling excreta. You do not know where you are going to die, whether it is in midst of everyone or in the forest. The physical body goes on changing, moment after moment. Certain things happen to this body on account of the food and habits. On account of carelessness, certain things happen to this body. We should not give too much of attention to this body. We should make effort to turn our mind and turn towards divinity. This is the greatest message.
Limited food intake is good for the body00:01:00
Man eats food in excess and thoughtlessly. “Na shreyo niyamam vina”, anything that is not bound by rules is harmful. Even for eating if there are no rules, not only does man fall sick but he may also be subjected to any number of troubles. Food is necessary in order to maintain the body, but this food too must be eaten in tune with the quantity required for the sustenance of the body. Upon exceeding the limit this body is subjected to numerous illnesses.
The Body is the Temple of God - Treat it Thus00:04:00
Whether you believe it or not, I never did these sadhana at all. But, this body which is 67 years old never experienced any kind of fatigue or tiredness whatsoever. The reason being, all the powers are latent in this body. The yoga shakthi (yogic power) and everything are present inside. Body is just like an instrument. Because of this yogic power, if anything is cursed it becomes stand still. If we say that this feeling should not leave, it stops there itself. Not only for Me, it is possible for everyone. The reason is, God is in every one. In this body, that body and in all bodies, the Self is same. Specifically, you should not have differences based on the body. The Self present in everything is one and develop that spirit of oneness. This body is a temple of God. 'Deho Devalaya Prokto Jeevo Deva Sanathana' – that is why it is said that the body is like a temple of God. But you should make use of this temple in a sacred manner. You call it a temple but you use it like a choultry. You construct a house and keep doors. You have the doors for going in and out of the house and also for the use of your relations, friends, family members etc. But just because we have doors, do we allow donkeys, pigs and dogs which are roaming in the bazaar to enter the house? Similarly we have senses; what for do we have the senses? It is for our own self experience. Just because we have these doors called senses, we allow everything that roams in the bazaar to enter inside and thus the body becomes a choultry. We shouldn't do that. They should not enter into me; those dogs are to be driven out. Permit only what is needed. Through such enquiry, human being can become sacred to any extent. It is because there is scope for such sacredness, man becomes God. ‘Oh, where is God and where is man?’, thinking so, you should never give room to disappointment. Man is God. Strengthen that kind of a true feeling. You can experience this within three days time. If you do not have that firm faith and give in to bumps and jumps, even after thirty generations you can never accomplish it. Yogic exercise is too small and very easy; it is not difficult; there is no expenditure; you need not exert much and it's an easy path. I will tell you much more later. In this easiest path, you can get the bliss however much you want and attain good health also.
Human body should be put to work00:04:36
There is a machine, a pump set, and a generator. They are all made up of Iron. If they are not put to work, they get rusted. Our physical body also is akin to a generator or a pump set. Machines are made up of iron and human body is made up of flesh. If Iron could get rusted when the machine is idle, will not the human body get rusted when there is no activity? If one doesn’t take bath for a couple of days, the body stinks and scratching commences! It only means to convey that the idle machine and idle human body are prone to rusting if they remain static. Therefore, the body must be active with work. But there has to be a limit also. Food and water must be taken as necessary, lest the body becomes sick. Work must be done in such a way that body’s health is also taken care of. Human body also needs rest, at regular intervals, like the machines for their upkeep. Embodiments of Love! Rest doesn’t mean idle relaxing or sleeping in an Ac room. Change of work is rest. If one goes to the market, involving in household duties after returning home is also rest. Students, for example, after play may switch over to singing and other entertainments for some time. They may take to reading some good books when done with play. We can go on changing the nature of work. But for human body’s functioning, the twin attributes of inhalation and exhalation have to function uninterruptedly without any change or rest! This is a natural phenomenon, intrinsic in the human body by birth. This is the secret of Divinity. One must realize this truth. It is only through Service (nay Seva) that one can discern the innate Divinity!
Body is an instrument in realizing God00:02:56
The Scientists said, the place where the science ends spirituality begins. This is important. All the worldly activity belongs to science. The physical body is necessary. You have to maintain it, you cannot consider it permanent , eternal and dedicate your life. It is the body that helps you to realise the objective of life. With this body you can attain divinity. I am not the body. Body is an instrument given to realise God. This is my body, my intellect, my mind, my senses, Then who are you? No one is putting such questions. When I say this is my kerchief, I am separate from my kerchief. Similarly when you say my body, you are separate from the body. Then who are you? We don't put a question of that sort to ourselves but we carried away by the scenario around. Body is an instrument that shows you the path and the truth. The body has got the divinity latent in it. All the material word is negative. You are the positive. And you have to consider everything positive and experience them. Don't give scope for negativity. Negative gives you negative value. The main cause for restlessness in the world is because of this negativity. All this is matter, You are the Master. Master the mind, Be a Mastermind. You be a master that is true education, Bookish knowledge is not true education. It only tells you the ideal for this temporal world.
Swami on five sheaths of human body00:01:52
The human body is encased in five sheaths: Annamaya kosha (the sheath of food or physical sheath), Pranamaya kosha (the vital sheath), Manomaya kosha (the mental sheath), Vijnanamaya kosha (the sheath of wisdom), and Anandamaya kosha (the sheath of bliss). Among the five sheaths, Vijnanamaya kosha (the sheath of wisdom) is present only in man and not in other beings. How can man think that the wisdom given to him as a mean thing. No no. We are thinking the human life as a mean thing and wasting our time not utilizing it. Man who is endowed with all virtues, meritorious deeds, man with tradition and culture, man with character. How can he be considered as so low and mean. This is the weak state of man. Forgetting all his immense potentialities and treating the physical as most important, man is leading a meaningless life. It is not the physical (Annamaya kosha) that is really important. As long as life is based on the sheath of food, Annamaya Kosha, physical alone, man can have no peace.
Use your body to do sacred acts00:01:43
Money that is lost can be earned again. Lost friends may be got back again. Even the loss of a wife can be made up by remarriage. But, if the present body is lost, it cannot be got back again. Hence, the body is highly sacred. For what purpose should this sacred body be protected? The body has to be protected because verily it is the primary means of achieving dharma. Human birth is a rare privilege. It is highly sacred and sublime. Having been born as human beings, if men do not realize the preciousness of human life, what is the use of being born as human?
Human life once lost cannot be got back00:01:54
Embodiments of love, young man and women! Citizens of the future world! One can earn money back even if it is lost. One can make another friend even if one loses one. One can get married again if one loses one’s wife. One can again acquire land and property even if one loses it. But once the body is gone one cannot get it back. In this vast creation, the human being is the noblest and exalted one. Man is noble. He is endowed with character and nobility; if that humanness is lost, one cannot get it again.
Body is the temple, God is the indweller; Man should realise it00:02:27
‘Deho devalayoprocto, jeevodevah sanatanaha”—body is the temple and God is the in dweller. Why do people go to places like Tirupathi, Vaikuntha, Badrinath or Amarnath thinking that God is there in those places? Human mind has become very narrow. One is ready to undertake travel to distant places to seek God but is reluctant to seek Him within one’s heart. He who cannot see God within, wastes time by travelling to pilgrim centres. God is not anywhere outside; one is essentially God and one’s heart is temple of God. Hence body is the temple of God. Though man is gifted with sacred human life, he is not making proper use of it; he behaves more like an animal than like a human. Atleast animals conform to rules and regulations and discipline but man today neither has any rules nor dedication towards them. Man has put away dedication and follows his own likes and desires. What are man’s likes? Why does man struggle for the transient and low worldly existence? One must strive for God who is eternal truth, serve the society, and worship the living and not the life less rocks. Man today worships the lifeless idols but does not respect the human beings. A worship that does not make one respect fellow human beings is not worthy and cannot be termed as worship. Charity done without respect for fellow beings and without the element of service to others is no charity. Man is the embodiment of God and God resides in man, hence the vedas say, “Daiwam maanusha roopena”--- God manifests in the form of humans.
The world is an illusion and impermanent00:03:19
The world which we see around us has been referred to as the Mithyaloka (deluding world). If we think that the world is real, it will quickly disappear, change form and tell us that it is false. On the other hand, if we think it to be false, we see things around us causing the feeling that it is real. Therefore, it is neither true nor false. The world is somewhere between truth and falsehood. It sometimes appears to you as true and at other times as not true. That is the reason why it is sometimes called Sat-asat (truth and untruth), because it is both seen and unseen. In this context, we recollect that what we see during the day, we do not see in the dreams of our sleep. What we see in our dreams during the night, we do not see during the day. What is truth and what is falsehood? Our own minds are getting confused. We are unable to see the difference between truth and falsehood. Our ideas and desires keep changing–appearing and disappearing. Therefore, these ideas and desires and our own body itself are unreal. They are not permanent and therefore not true.
Swami on Dehi and Deha00:02:38
It is said in the Vedas: Not by actions, not by progeny, not by wealth but by sacrifice alone one can attain immortality. Premaswarupas! Like clouds move away, all our material wealth, gold, prosperity and vehicles will leave us any moment. The physical body is made of the five elements. It is inevitable that this physical body will fall. The one who lives in the body is the eternal one. If you analyze, the indweller does not have birth or death is not bound by worldly ties. If we look at the truth carefully, we will find that this indweller is the God Almighty in the form of Atma. It is for the sake of this eternal spirit that we have taken this physical form. It is for HIM that we have donned this physical body. It is for the sake of the Atma that we have acquired this material body with five elements. If we forget the Atma, the indweller and GOD, the body has no value at all. Manifesting the indweller through this body, when we use the body for the purpose of doing selfless service, we would have done justice to the adage. The purpose of body is to do good to others.
Human body is a marvel of God's creation00:02:00
The real sanctity of the divinity lies in acquiring proper jewellery for the humanity. The human body is mysterious and all beauty. Man cannot realise the secrets of God’s creation. None is able to decipher the listening faculties of the ears. No one is able to make out the power of vision in the eyes. The beauty of all the limbs and senses is the secret of creation. Doctors only know the ‘how’ of the functioning of the each of the senses organs or the limbs. No one is making an effort to know the ‘why’ of the functioning. This secret is understood only by the true self.
Physical body is temporary and transcient00:02:54
This physical body which is made up of five elements is temporary, transient and is not going to last. This truth has not been recognized by man. Man's stomach may be compared to a rubbish dump where all the unwanted things are dumped. We take the support of this body which is temporary but recognise the basic truth and the real truth. Physical body may be compared to an iron safe. The jewels hidden in this iron safe are extremely precious and valuable. Not recognising the precious jewels which this iron safe contains, we are wasting all our attention only on the iron safe which is valueless. In this body are hidden the good conduct, the good behavior, virtues and such great qualities which are very precious. Thiruthonda Alwar declared: this physical body is a dirty house, it is a basket full of all diseases. This undergoes a number of changes and modulations. This is one which cannot help you to cross the ocean of life and it is something like a bed of arrows. Oh mind! Do not place your entire trust in this body which is not going to be permanent. Believe in the Lotus feet of Hari. He has addressed only the mind here. He has not addressed the body.
Stages in human life; with analogies00:07:33
Truly, our body goes through various stages like boyhood, youth, adolescence and old age. Depending upon the stage through which the body is passing at a particular moment, it will decide for itself the work that is appropriate for that particular stage. In the stage of boyhood, the individual engages himself in playing, singing, reading and in various other kinds of such pleasures and gets happiness out of those activities. In that stage, he does not think at all or worry himself about what is going to be his future. In fact, he then lives in such fantasy that he is free from all worries and enjoys the period of boyhood. At that juncture, while he lives unmindful of the world and the worries of the world, he gets into what we may call his youth. The moment youth sets in, his vision gets blurred and he becomes blind in the sense that he does not look at things in the proper perspective. He does not care to look at the earth or the sky. He forgets what is moral and what is immoral. He does not pay any attention to respect or disrespect. In fact, he gets so excited that nothing else matters to him except his personal and sensuous pleasures. In this manner, he makes his life somewhat useless. Even as he is getting confused while enjoying sensuous pleasures, middle age enters his life. As soon as middle age enters, he begins to feel tied down with responsibility because he has a family and people to look after. He develops an attachment that goes with it. He feels that some power is binding him down and constantly strives to come out of that bondage. At this stage of his life, even as he is struggling to free himself from such attachments, he gets into a period that we call the old age. His eyes will be afflicted by cataract and he cannot see things clearly. He cannot walk fast. His hands will shake and tremble. He cannot hear well and he will be thinking about things that have gone behind him in his youth and in his adolescence. He will generally prefer to be in a reminiscent mood, occasionally wondering and fearing how the future will be for him. Although in his boyhood, youth, middle age and old age, he had sufficient and ample time to think about worldly matters, this aged person will be feeling that he does not have sufficient time to think of God. Such a person will not have peace of mind nor will he find the bliss that goes with the realisation of Atma. He will be steadily declining, thinking only of the past and worrying about how he is going to spend the future.
Body is not permanent00:02:31
Whatever endeavours you perform, nothing can happen without the grace of Bhavani and Shankara. Every form is assigned a name, there is a rishi's name, God's name etc. None of these names and forms are important. All these things change. Body is like a water bubble. Mind is like a mad monkey. These are not permanent at all. Therefore, there is something which is permanent and true within. That is Divinity. That is God's hands, legs, heads are everywhere, He is all pervasive - that is the simple truth. That is the only truth. That is holy. This divine principle is immanent in every person. You have to try to harness your strength to understand this divine principle. Where did Sumathi get the strength to stop the sunrise? Because of the love she had for her husband, she could stop even the sun from rising. The earnestness is what is important. When earnestness increases, faith automatically increases. The deeper the roots grow, the tree grows bigger and bigger. When the roots of earnestness go deep inside, only then the tree of faith grows. Without earnestness and faith, no name, no form, can ever help you. So many people try to do many spiritual practices to get God. These are merely something which satisfies you physically and mentally.
Body is the very temple of God00:01:00
Embodiments of love! You don’t need to go far to a temple to worship God. The body is verily a temple and the indweller is God. Where is the temple of God? It is not in a hut, not in a mansion. It is in the human heart. The human heart is the altar of God. You should safeguard this mansion of the divine. Therefore, the vedas say, the truth is One not two, referred to in many ways. The heart is the true one, the love within the heart is the permanent one. The divine thought that come out of the heart, the seat of love, speaks of righteousness for the welfare of all. The heart is the seat for all three of these.
Offer your mind and body to God00:01:33
Do not think too much of your body. You have to protect to the extent necessary. Body is the instrument for action. Mind is the basis for worship. The heart is the basis for merger. We have to understand the unity in this trinity. The unity of these three must be offered as the only one, the single one, with single-pointedness, to the Lord. What is to be offered to God? Even body has to be offered to God. This (body) is the leaf. The mind is the flower. Bliss is water. Intellect is the result. This is why they say that we offer leaf, flower, water and fruit. We shouldn’t consider this fleeting, momentary body as permanent. We should go by the supreme principle of the Self. Even this body should be offered to God. The body should be used to serve the divine in humanity. Therefore, human life is the basis for action, worship and wisdom.
Human life is precious, realize it00:05:00
Divya Atmaswarupas! We are all born in this world taking this human form. But this human body with the five elements is not permanent. Once this body drops down or disappears, it’s not possible to find it in any other place. Whether it is the property which we own, or the bodily pleasures which we have, these are all temporary, they are like passing clouds. After you have passed away, whether in the past, present or the future, at all times, what remains is the immortal aspect in you, the reputation that you have earned. When you die, you will be remembered for the good that you have done. Your name will be mentioned in honour and thinking about the good that you have contributed. If you have done something bad, the later generations will only be remember the bad that you have done and that will also reflect on your family in a negative manner. I am hoping that because God gifted this sacred human life expecting you to do some work worthy of mentioning and thereby make your life purposeful and useful. A little while ago, a small girl told us that this body is like temple of God, and in the body resides God. The very heart inside the body is the seat where God resides. We will have to therefore recognize that all the organs in this body are sacred. They cannot be abused, the five senses, your sight, your hearing, your smell, your touch and taste, all should be kept in a good condition. They should not be allowed to deteriorate. Remember the saying 'Janthunaam nara janma dhurlabam', which means “of all the births of various kinds of animals, to be born as human being is something which is very difficult”. Having achieved this human life, you must spend all the time that you have at your disposal by speaking truth, thinking of good things, keeping good company, having good thoughts, and doing good things. If you don’t, you have wasted precious time given to you and time wasted is life wasted.
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