KarimNagarBody


Karimnagar: JANUARY 1-2, 2013

What Should We Pray For?

Jagadguru Shankaracharya Sri Sri Bharati Tirtha Mahaswamiji arrived at Karimnagar on the evening of 1st January 2013. Sri Puranam Maheshwara Sharma led the devotees in welcoming the Jagadguru.

In His Anugraha Bhashanam, the Jagadguru stated that Sri Adi Shankara Bhagavatpada has blessed the world with a number of teachings. He has written the commentaries for Vedavyasa’s Brahmasutras, the ten Upanishads and the Bhagavad Gita. But these cannot be understood by the common man. Only people who have studied the scriptures deeply can study these works and understand Bhagavatpada’s expositions. Therefore, Sri Shankara Bhagavatpada penned a number of works which are within reach of the common man. In various ways, He preached the path of goodness to the common man. Apart from praising deities in His Stotras, He has imparted several teachings. In a particular instance, while praying to God, He has said thus: “O Lord! I have some earnest prayers and You must fulfill these.” However in reality, these are prayers we must seek. What are these things to be prayed for?

PRAYER ONE. REMOVE MY EGO, GRANT ME HUMILITY.

We must first ask God to remove our ego. We must ask Him to grant us humility. This is the most important prayer. We are all vulnerable to ego and that leads us to commit mistakes. Generally, a wrong-doer thinks nobody can question him. He feels his wealth, authority and influence will be sufficient to silence his critics. This ego makes him commit wrong deeds. Each of us can ask our conscience as to whether what we are doing is right. There is one thing every man has to remember. Nobody may question you here (in this world) on account of your wealth and authority. But when you leave your mortal coil and face God, what would your answer be? Neither wealth nor authority will be with you then. You will be left with no other alternative than to accept whatever punishment is meted out to you. Had you possessed the knowledge of this fact before doing the wrong act, you would not have committed it at all nor would you have to face the consequences. This is the reason why Bhagavatpada has prayed for God to remove ego, which is the root-cause of all wrongdoings. Let not ego be cultivated at any circumstance. One may think, ‘I am very wealthy.’ But how have you gotten this wealth? Think at least once that it is due to God’s grace. Without God’s grace what can you do? You may think it is because of your own capability. But without God’s grace, your capability is useless. Thus, we cannot obtain anything with just our capability. We can obtain anything only when coupled with God’s grace. If we are wealthy today, it is due to God’s grace. Use the wealth for noble acts, not for wrongdoing. The Shaastras (Vedas) have said that “one who does not use his wealth for spiritual acts or for for the welfare of the society, but for his own wellbeing only, is a sinner.”

मोघमन्नं विन्दते अप्रचेताः । सत्यं ब्रवीमि वध यित्स तस्य । नार्यमणं पुष्यति नो सखायम् । केवलाघो भवति केवलादी ।

A person who thinks his wealth is for feeding himself, his wife and children, is merely eating sin. He neither uses it for spiritual purposes, nor for societal welfare. Of what use is his wealth? Our predecessors have stated thus: “The wealthy have to remember one thing – wealth is spent in three ways. Charity being the first, enjoyment being the second, and loss due to robbers, Kings or fire, being the third. While robbery causes loss, “loss due to Kings” implies Tax! Tax is levied on everything! When we sleep in the night, robbers rob. If not, a electrical short-circuit triggers a fire! Therefore, whatever charity you do with your own hands, is truly yours. Whatever charity you have performed in this birth, will give you happiness in your next birth. There is nothing else that will secure your happiness in the next birth. When we leave this mortal coil, who will come with us? We would have helped a lot of people, deeming them to be our relatives, friends, etc. But will they come with us after our death? Nobody will come. They will leave without turning back.

मृतं शरीरमुत्सृज्य काष्ठलोष्टसमं क्षितौ ।
विमुखा बान्धवा यान्ति धर्मस्तं अनुगच्छति ।

“Vimukhaah” meaning turning their faces away, without facing you. Then what will accompany you? – Dharmah tam anugachchati. If you have done any charity, helped others or rendered service to God, only that will accompany you. So never forget this. This is the reason why a person said something very enjoyable: Greedy men, think that they can bundle-up all their wealth onto their heads and take it with them when they leave this world, without giving a penny to anybody. To such people, it is said, “O you greedy man! What you think is right. You can indeed bundle-up your wealth on your head when you are dying. But there is a way for it. Be charitable to deserving people when you are alive. This will definitely pile-up onto your head and come with you!”

मृतोऽप्यर्थं न मोक्ष्यामि बद्ध्वा नेष्यामि मूर्धनि ।
इति चेत् सुदृढा बुद्धिः पात्रे देयमशङ्कितम् ।

If you really want to bundle-up something when you are dying, give charity to worthy people.

Suppose you are going on a pilgrimage and you require Rs.30,000 for it. It is not possible to carry that amount everywhere you go. So what do you do? Deposit cash here and withdraw it in an ATM in Delhi or anywhere else you go to. Shastram (scripture) also prescribes something akin to this. If you do good now, it will come in handy in your next birth. You believe that the cash you deposit here can be withdrawn from an ATM in Delhi. Then why can’t you have the same belief in what the Shastram says?! Belief and sincerity are very essential to man. In a particular instance, man’s surprising attributes are described thus: Wealthy people lend money in thousands, based on just a promissory note. Whether the borrower will repay or not, is known only to God. If he files an insolvency petition, the lender will get nothing in return!! But nobody is ready to believe when the scriptures say that you will obtain ten times the merit in the next birth, in accordance to what you give away in this birth. You believe a piece of paper, but not the scriptures!

The Jagadguru also recounted an anectode in this regard. Once upon a time, a man went seeking a loan of Rs.100. In those days, a hundred rupees was a valuable amount! The lender put a condition that he must repay on the 1st of the following month and that he would charge Rs.10 as interest. The borrower promised that he definitely would abide by these conditions. The lender however said that he would deduct the interest at that very instant. The borrower agreed to this, too. But the lender said he would now give give Rs. 90, but that the borrower should return Rs.110! The borrower consented. Both parties concerned parted ways happily. But another person was unsure as to how both parties were happy. When he enquired with the lender, he said he was very happy as he had managed to earn Rs.20 in a minute! When he enquired the borrower as to how he’s happy, he said he managed to earn Rs.90 in a minute! In other words, he would not repay! We believe such people, but not our scriptures, which say you would reap 10 or 100 times the benefit of what you do in this birth!

We began all this in the context of shedding ego. Being egoistic due to wealth, is improper. We should use our wealth for noble causes, not for wrongdoing. Therefore, we should pray to God that we should not have ego. When we distance ourselves from ego, we will not commit mistakes.

PRAYER TWO. LET ME NOT HAVE ANY DESIRES

Our next prayer should be to not have desires. If we get one thing today, we crave for another and yet another, in succession. Once we have a craving for something, we try to obtain it in some way or the other. We try to acquire it by hook or crook. If we do not have desire, would we commit all kinds of wrong to satiate it?

PRAYER THREE. MAKE ME COMPASSIONATE

The next and most important prayer should be to have compassion. Only if we possess compassion, will we help others. In the absence of it, we will not come forward to help. Only if we have compassion can we be humans; else we would be demons – दया सत्यं च शौचं च राक्षसानां न विद्यते – Demons do not possess compassion, truthfulness or cleanliness. Therefore, we must pray to God that we have compassion.

PRAYER FOUR. I SHOULD NOT HAVE ANOTHER BIRTH.

The last prayer to God should be to help us cross this ocean of worldly existence. We should pray that we do not have another birth.

These are verily what we should pray for. If we pray for these, God will grant them. Then, nothing else is needed. But our prayer should be filled with devotion. Without devotion, none of our prayers will be answered. Devotion is hence paramount.

Sri Shankara Bhagavatpada has given hundreds of such teachings. If we remember even one of these teachings and act accordingly, our life will be worthy. Since Sri Shankaracharya has thus helped the world, He is worthy of worship by us and for He has become the foundation of our support and motivation. To perpetuate the awareness of Dharma, He established the Chaturaamnaaya Peethams.

The Jagadguru added that, from its inception, the Sringeri Sharada Peetham has been creating awareness on the tenets of Dharma among people. The Jagadguru pointed out that His Parameshti Guru (Jagadguru Sri Sacchidananda Shivabhinava Narasimha Bharati Mahaswamiji), with a view that knowledge about our scriptures is waning, established Shastra Pathashalas, Sanskrit Pathashalas and Veda Pathashalas in many places, a century ago. The idea behind founding these Pathashalas was that people from all over should come here, study the scriptures and then return to teach them in their own towns.

The Jagadguru then mentioned that about 30 years ago, Shri. Shastrula Vishwanatha Sarma of Sivampeta, had brought three students to the Jagadguru as they were very keen on learning scriptures in the Bengaluru Pathashala. The Jagadguru was very happy that the students had come all the way from Karimnagar and had arranged for their lessons.

The students were now scholars and were instrumental in making arrangements for the Jagadguru’s camp at Karimnagar. The Jagadguru added that it is because of them that this opportunity has come for Him to speak about Dharma to the residents of Karimnagar.

The Jagadguru remembered the previous visits of His Guru and of Himself to Karimnagar and ended the Anugraha Bhashanam blessing the residents of Karimnagar.

 

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Anugraha Bhashanam at Karimnagar

 

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Other Visits & Bhumi Puja for Goddess Saraswati Temple

On 2nd January, the Jagadguru visited the Sringeri Shankara Math in Gayatri Nagar and had Darshan of Goddess Sharada and Adi Shankara. In His Anugraha Bhashanam, the Jagadguru blessed that many Dharmic activities and Upanyasas be held in the Math and that devotees be benefitted.

In the afternoon, the Jagadguru performed the Bhumi Puja for Vidya Saraswati temple and Vivekananda Hostel at the Vivekananda Group of Institutions at Karim Nagar.

The Jagadguru then departed for his next destination, Yadagirigutta in Nalgonda district, and enroute had Darshan at the Venkateshwara Swamy temple of the Peetham in Singapuram.

 

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