The Message of the Great Master
God made man and man as a social being could not but develop social orders, so very necessary for the welfare of the corporate body called 'society'. As a member of the society, he contributed his mite in advancing the social, political, moral and material welfare of the community to which he belonged. Since one has to pass his days in life's sojourn in one or the other social order, it is but meet that one should strive to be useful to his fellow beings and to pass his days happily as a good world citizen.
There are always two sides of the picture; one is the objective side and the other is the subjective side. The objective side deals with the outer man in his relations with outer environments. On the subjective side, man is an Inner man and may for convenience be called an ensouled body or embodied Spirit. He is, as such, a Consciuos Entity, a drop of the Ocean of All-Consciousness, being of the same essence as that of God. His Godhood is, however, hemmed in and environed by the outer man consisting of mind, matter, vital airs(Pranas) and outgoing faculties.
Man is thus gifted with body, mind or intellect and the Inner man or Soul. The outer man has already taken long strides in physical, social, political, moral and intellectual spheres of life. He has been successful in annihilating time and space and is striving to conquer nature's barriers.
His activities are encircling the entire globe and he is now seeking to establish interplanetary contacts with Mars, Moon and the Sun. But it is a matter of deep regret that man has gained control over the forces of nature before knowing the true nature of his own Self – the Inner man or the Soul; with the result that he is turning his knowledge to the creation of powerful instruments of wholesale destruction. He has invented deadly weapons like long-range missiles, rockets, flying saucers and bombs of all varieties (Atomic, Hydrogen, Cobalt and Nitrogen etc.), besides many other dreadful engines capable of mass devastation. This continuous life of strife, struggle and storm has already taken a heavy tall of humanity. All his achievements are at the cost of the Inner man. Lost in the glamour of the world, he has become entirely extrovert and he is held as if fast in hoops of steel, while the Inner man behind lies in the dark dungeon of mind and matter famished and shrivelled up for want of proper nurture. Is it not selling Soul for a mess of pottage? –
For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world and lose his own soul?
St Mark 8:36
The reason for this sad state of affairs lies in man's failure to realize the importance of the Inner man or Soul, which resides behind and gives life and power to both the body and the mind. He knows very little or nothing about the Inner man or Soul and his knowledge in this respect is restricted to only what is given in the Scriptures and he has no practical experience thereof.
Theoretically we do know, as laid down in religious books and Holy Scriptures, that Inner man is not the body, nor the intellect, nor the vital airs(Pranas), nor the outgoing faculties. No doubt, theory always precedes practice but the true aim of life does not end there, for theory is but the means to an end and not the end itself. The real and the highest goal of life is to liberate practically the Inner man from the bondage of mind, matter, the vital airs and the outgoing faculties and to know the real and intrinsic nature of the Higher Self in its detached and liberated form. This is called Self-knowledge (Khud Shanasi or Atam Darshan) and it comes through a regular process of inversion or self-analysis.
Oh Nanak! Until a man has analyzed himself from the outer man, he leads a deluded superficial life and does not know the True Inner Self.
Know Thyself, has ever been the slogan of sages throughout the ages. Gnothi Seauton was an article of faith with the ancient Greek Philosophers as Nosce te ipsum was with the Latins; both meaning the same thing, viz. Self-knowledge. This indeed is the Truth, as given out by Holy Scriptures. Self-knowledge or to know one's own Self, therefore, precedes God-knowledge or the knowledge of Overself. Truly speaking, a person who has not known himself practically, cannot be a theist in the real sense of the word as it is the Soul or Inner Self, apart from the body and bodily adjuncts, which has to realize God. The majority of preachers, including the so-called teachers with whom the world abounds, fall under this category.
It is a matter of common knowledge and experience that Light comes from Light and Life from Life. God, the Great Immanent Power, is said to be both Light and Life. He is the perennial source of them both and all living creatures live in Him and get their Light from Him – each according to his or her mental make up.
Every individual is endowed with limited capabilities. In this world of relativity, we have limitations of time, space and causation; besides those of body and of mind. We live a life of relative consciousness and all our knowledge is therefore relative. We know next to nothing of the sub-conscious, the super-conscious and the Absolute and All-Pervading Reality, and the little we know of the conscious state is neither all nor absolute, but such as is capable of being comprehended by the ego through the various physical organs and outgoing faculties and the knowledge of one person is not that of the other and each thinks and acts in one's own diverse way.
With all our progress in literature and science, art and religion, moral and material welfare and added comforts of life resulting therefrom, wwe continue to be as dissatisfied as ever before. Desease and sickness, poverty and infirmity, dotage and decrepitude, are the common lot alike of the rich and the poor, the lettered and the un-lettered, the virtuous and vicious. Death, the last enemy of all living creatures, lays its icy hands on all. It comes when it comes and there is no escape from it.
On the other hand, all the scriptural texts tell us that man is the image of God. He is the roof and crown of God's creation, and God ordained even the angels to bow before man.
God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them. And God blessed them.
Man, thou art an image of Light […] All other beings are for thy service. Thou art the Lord of this earth.
God having fashioned man after His own likeness, commanded the gloriuos host of Heaven to bow before man.
But what do we actually see? Born with a thorn in the flesh, we find ourselves living together in a world bursting with sin and sorrow. Ever since the fall of Adam, for his first disobedience to God, as revealed in the Testament, we too find the same canker – the canker of ego – festering in each one of us and over-shadowing the Light of God in us. We have sorely cut ourselves from the Godhead in us. The objects of the world have so gripped us in their deadly hold, that we have lost sight of all that is noble in life. With moorings cut asunder, we are drifting rudderless in the sea of life, a constant prey to chance winds and waves; regardless of the innumerable leaks that spring in our barque. Willy nilly we have closed our eyes to the Reality and blind-fold march on – whereto? – we know not.
Is there then no remedy for this sad and deplorable state of affairs? The sages and seers tell us with one voice that there is a potent and sovereign remedy for all the ills of the world.
The ego is a deep-rooted malady but there is a remedy for it as well, should God bestow His favour and one practise the Word of the Guru this wise, Oh Nanak, one rids himself of it.
Since we have brought on the disease ourselves, we can remedy it also; for there is no wrong without a remedy. The cure of mal-adjustment lies in re-adjustment or propper setting of things, revaluation and true outlook on life and life's objects; what we were, what we are and what we can become. Designed by the Masterhand of the Creator, with the Divine Link within, but lost in the mighty swirl of the world, man can yet take hold of the Saving-Lifeline, if he could but see it and hold it firmly. All religions were originally designed for this very end, as even the etymology of the word 'religion' signifies: meaning, that which binds you back to the Life-chord within. But alas! We have mercilessly dragged down religions to the level of social codes of conduct only, with the result that organized rigidity has taken the place of elastic Living and Life-giving touch of their founders. Instead of the soothing balm, we get from the so-called masters only rites and rituals, austerities and penances, forms, formalities and formularies which, howsoever useful in preparing the ground, do not gain salvation by themselves. And, we have even lost their real significance, owing to the dearth of the practical Masters, who alone can give us the basic import of all this symbolism.
The result is that the very Life-springs of the waters of Immortality, which the living Masters had in abundance and doled out freely to the needy, have now been buried under the debris of ages and lost to view under the heavy load of verbiage. Their teachings, no doubt, remain with us in the form of scriptures, and are indeed valuable records of their personal experiences of the Spirit within. But how far can we really understand them and make their experiences as our own – that is the basic problem, for esoteric teachings can best be expounded only by some Adept in the Science of the Spirit. But there is nothing to despair of. So long as God (God-into-Expression-Power) lasts, there shall ever remain a Way to God and a Godman to point out that way and be a guide to the human spirit in search of God.
Holy Men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.
2 Peter 1:21
I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.
St John 8:22
Poor Nanak opens his mouth, when he is bidden to do so.
Oh Lalo! I relate the Divine Word, as It comes to me from my Beloved.
His words are the Words of Allah, though seemingly they come from man.
There is in nature the immutable law of Demand and Supply, and mutely it works in all the spheresof life. There is food for the hungry and water for the thirsty.
Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness; for they shall be filled.
St Matthew 5:1-12
The piteous cries of the world-weary souls cannot, after all, go in vain, for nothing is lost in nature. In all times and in all climes, Godmen do appear with a message of God – the message of hope, redemption and fulfilment. Ever in tune with the Infinite, they have the power and hold a Divine commission to unite souls yearning for union with God. To this high order belong all the greatsages and seers, right from the most ancient times down to the present age. Children of light as they are, they come to diffuse Heaven's Light in the world.
Hundreds of Moons and thousands of Suns fail to illumine the human heart, but for the Master, utter darkness prevails.
I am the Light of the world. He that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the Light of Life.
They address themselves not to one orthe other particular sect or order, but to humanity in general –
A Master-Soul is known by His catholicity to embrace in persons of all types in His fold.
They come not to make or unmake any social moral laws, but their mission is just to fulfil the Divine Law – the law of the Spirit or Soul.
Think not that I am come to destroy the Law or the Prophets; I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.
St Matthew 5:17
Separated as each Soul is from the Oversoul it finds no rest until it becomes once again the rightful consort of the Lord God.
Our hearts find no rest until we rest in Thee.
But the wonder of wonders however is,
While living in the same abode, one has not known the other.
Religion, married life, social status, avocation, learning or even lack of knowledge and the like are no bars in the Path of the Masters. All are equally welcome to the Master, for His appeal is a universal one to the spirit immanent in every individual apart from the trappings of the flesh and all worldly considerations. Such indeed was the message of Hazur Baba Sawan Singh Ji Maharaj of Beas in the Punjab, which waas to revive the teachings of all the Saints who came in the past. Gifted with all the attributes of a perfect Saint, His life was a perfect embodiment of His teachings. With unbounded love for the suffering humanity, Hazur always desired that there should be some common ground and a common forum where persons of different castes and creeds, professing different religious views and beliefs and belonging to various sects and orders may congregate and practise Spiritual Sadhan or discipline under the guidanceof a Master-Soul, and thus win salvation and peace. It is, in fact, an article of faith with a Master-Soul (Sant-Satguru) to bring persons of all denominations at one common platform like brethren engaged in one pursuit, viz., the study of Spiritual Science or Ilm-i-laduni or Para-Vidya as it is called, i.e. Divine Knowledge or Knowledge of the Beyond.
Verily, he alone is a Masterf of Truth, who can unite all on one level.
Hazur Baba Sawan Singh Ji entrusted this task to His beloved disciple, Sant Kirpal Singh Ji, Who carried it on during the lifetime of Hazur and is doing so since the passing away of the Great Master. Accordingly, in the fullness of time, an Ashram was founded, on 11th June, 1951, in the loving memory of Baba Sawan Singh Ji and named after Him as Sawan Ashram. It is a living embodiment of the teachings and ideals of that Master-Soul, and shall ever remain a centre for the propagation of His views on life's most cardinal aim – to wit, Liberation of Spirit.