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What is Peace?

a short talk by Baba
March 23, 1978
Anandamayi Ashram
Ramanathpur, W.B.

Bullet14.gif (248 bytes) Real Audio Speech
Baba speaks with English subtitles

"The world is an ocean, and man is the fish.
His sins are the net, the fisherman is death."

Peace is within you. You cannot get that peace outside, it is inward. The inner peace is the real peace. Illusory peace is not peace. In illusion there are all kinds of peace, but it is not genuine peace. Peace is within. This inner peace is easy, and again, it is not easy.

How is it easy? Like a little child, a tiny infant, within his mind there is no other worry, no other thought. Simply if he gets hungry he calls his mother, crying "Ma! Ma!" Calling "Ma, Ma" like this, that is inner simplicity, or peace. Venerable Sri Thakur Ramakrishna has said, "If you have the nature of a small child, you get it easily." So you get much peace very easily.

How is it difficult? The mind. Restlessness. The mind is always restless. Do you know what our mind is like? As the water on a lotus leaf shakes like quicksilver, our mind is restless just like that. If this restlessness becomes still..

In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna said to Arjuna: "Abhyasha Jugo Jukteno Chetusang Annogaminang." Practice. One must practice. How to practice? Maybe the mind does not sit. In meditation maybe the mind does not go high. Even so, you won’t give up. Still you will sit. Or perhaps I am thinking of my revered Guru’s form and other kinds of thoughts come into the mind. Then in your mind, don’t just give up sadly. Even if the mind is obstinate, still you don’t give up. This restlessness of the mind is the thorn on our path of spiritual practice.

So the quieting of this restless mind is very easy, as I said about the nature of a child, but not everyone has this nature. You have to try a bit. If you keep on trying it will come about. "Guru Kripahi Kevalam." (Only by Guru’s grace). If you have the guru’s grace, the grace of God, then very thing will be alright.

The impossible can become possible. Because: "Kripahi Kevalam Volah".

Maybe in the mind one has to give up pride. "I", "I".. who am "I"? To say "I" is nothing. I am not. One has to forget the "me". The "I", the "me", is ego. The "I" is pride. This "I" is the error. If I forget this "I", then who will come? THOU.

That which He makes me do, that I do.
That which He makes me say, that I say.
That which He makes me see, that I see.

I am not. He is. For that reason hasn’t Sri Ramakrishna spoken of the ripe "I" and the unripe "I"? 

He who has surrendered and given everything. He holds nothing back for himself. He has given everything. That is the ripe "I". 

But if I give part of the mind up to God, and another part of the mind to the world— to this work or that work, here and there, to all kinds of insane restlessness - if I do that, then it won’t work at all. You have to give Him 16 annas (100%). If you give any less it won’t do. You have to give the full 16 annas, then you will have His grace. When that grace comes, then you won’t understand that you have gotten the grace, because where are you? When that grace is there, who are you?

As when Sita was in Sri Lanka, sitting in the forest of ashoal trees saying, "Ram, Ram, Ram ..." She was always doing it. One day she asked the demon Nikosha, "I am saying ‘Ram, Ram, Ram’ all the time. If I keep doing this will Ram really come?" Then the demon laughed and said, "Then you will turn into Ram! And Ram will turn into Sita and come and join you! How beautiful that will be!" What funny words!

For this reason always stay in the thought of Him. Don’t give up that thought of Him. When you give up that thought then all the time the six enemies will come pressing on you: desire, anger, greed, pride, jealousy, and vanity. And the ten senses, Prakritti (nature), Maya (illusion), all will come inside. One must be very attentive. That’s why they say, "Sadhu beware! Sadhu beware!" If you keep yourself vigilant, certainly you will find God easily.

He is not far away. He is near you. If you open the secret inner door you will see Him. But to open that inner door is a hard thing. Nature, illusion, pride, vanity—that’s why Thakur said, "Who am I? Who am I?" That which I truly am in truth, that is within. to know that, that is our sadhana (practice), or tapasya (austerity), or meditation. Guru’s grace, his compassion, Guru’s form, Guru Brahma. The Guru is the universal guide. Without the Guru’s grace nothing will come. That’s why Thakur used to say over and over again, "Guru Kripahi Kevalam, Guru Kripahi Kevalam."

So the devotees must try within themselves to keep their minds pure, to train their own minds. Just as ordinary people, living a family life, prepare a house to live in, in the same way in the path of sadhana we must make our mind pure. Wiping the dirt away from the mind. We must keep the mind clean. If, in our mind, we are always thinking of Him, then no other thought will be able to come in. 

Don’t forget. Always think of Him. then you will see that your mind spontaneously has become alright. When the mind spontaneously becomes still, then that’s enough! Ishwar, or the true self, or that true "I", the true person who is within, then you will see Him.

For that reason yogis do yoga, yogis do meditation, yogis do tapasya. Or bhaktas do worship of God, service of God. They make various kinds of offerings in their worship: flower garlands, sandalwood paste, or they wave the lights. They do all kinds of things. This is the way of devotion. Yogis look within themselves, their eyes withdrawn and fixed on the ajna chakra. They always stay absorbed in the thought of Him. It is all one thing. So follow that path which is easiest for you. Om shanti.

Today Premananda asked me, so I have said all this. But really I don’t speak. That word "I" is so dangerous. It is impure. That "I" is tamoguna. It is sin. Until I shall be able to forget the "I", the "me", I shall continue to get caught in the net of the three types of affliction. When I shall forget this "I"—Ah Ha! Then the net of afflictions cannot catch me any more. That’s why Thakur used to say, "Touch the Granny! Then you won’t need the Shastras any more." Do you know what "Touch the Granny" means? It means keeping that mind up on the bindu, with the Paramatma, giving up that "I" to the true self.

What I have said today, follow it. But what is there in words? there is nothing in speaking. Maybe it is easy enough to say, but one has got to do the work. One must always remain absorbed in the thought of Him. One must keep it going all the time. In all conditions and circumstances.

What is holy, what in unholy, these are all wrong ideas of the mind. Forget all these. In whatever state of mind you are in, in that state call on God. Didn’t He say, "Call on me in all your changing states?" Because of our mind’s wrong ideas we change our clothes before worship. Or we take some Ganges water, or make the seat purified, and so on. There is a reason for doing all these. Why do we do it? Bit by bit, to make the mind "right". Gradually doing all this, when the mind is set right, then what is rejected, urine, feces, what is holy, what is unholy, there will be no discrimination. It is inexpressible.

Jaya Guru. I don’t know what has come from my mouth by Guru’s grace, what He has made me say. There is no way without the guru. Guru is the root of all. Unwavering faith. That is the one and only means on our sadhana path, on our path of meditation. It is the best policy. As long as we don’t have this unwavering faith, so long will our mind be restless and agitated. The mind won’t work well. Unwavering faith. That’s why it says in the Chaitanya Charitamrita, "Faith will get you God, debate goes on forever." If you have faith will get God.

You already have gotten God. Why speak of getting? You have already gotten it. So why can’t you know it? Wrong ideas. God is right in front of you, standing right in front of you. Still we can’t see. Why can’t we see? Our sight is completely wrapped in illusion. And so we can’t see Him. Here I am finished.

Om Shanti, Om Shanti, Om Shanti.

Premananda's Notes:

It was the spring of 1978 and Baba had been ill with heart problems for many weeks. I was very sad that he seemed to be suffering so much.

Even so, I had brought my tape machine and had wanted desperately to record more of him speaking. At that time it was still incomprehensible to me that a man of this order was hidden in this tiny town, unrecognized even by many of the people of that place, let alone the west. It was my wish to share him with the whole world,

But here he was so often seeming to be at death's door. Why, I agonised, were there so many lesser gurus trumpeting their limited understanding in America while this truly genuine one stayed hidden in this remote hut?

I entered his room after where he was lying down after the noon meal. I chastised him for his indifference to my taping of his words.

He rolled over and signaled me to start tape, and out poured these words in a continuous flow. One can almost hear the resignation in his voice, as if he were saying, "Yes, you can tape it, what who will listen? What is the use of words?"

Even so, as weak as he was, out of love for me, he gave me what I wanted.

Afterward I felt ashamed that I had bothered him. Had my so-called concern for "the world," that "the world" should hear him speak words of wisdom, had that vain desire now overridden my love and concern for him and his health? In fact I still feel ashamed about that day.

In any case, regardless of the personal lesson I took from it, this web page is the result. If anyone anywhere benefits from it, now that he is gone from that body, I shall be greatly relieved.