Speech by an Ashram resident at the Bhumi Shakti Conference
Namaskaram to everyone… and this means, “I worship the higher Self within each of you.”
This is a conference about Mother Earth and that means it’s also about us. If we could just understand ourselves better we would be more connected to this planet Earth and to all the other natural kingdoms that live on it.
People have given our planet names such as Earth, Gaia, Gea, Demeter, Cibels, Panchamama, Terra, Bhumi Devi, to name just a few. These names – which since the beginning of time different civilizations have given this planet – show that they recognized her as a mother goddess, an intelligent organism of giving, of nurturing, of fertility and compassion, an intelligent organism that is also connected with other planets and stars.
The Source from which we all originate, gave us a beautiful planet so that we can experiment with life, so that we can experience life in different ways and develop and grow in knowledge. Neither this planet nor our bodies belong to us. But this is something that over time we have forgotten.
The time has now come when we need to remember what was once forgotten. Once, when Swamiji appeared a little sad and upset, he said: “You have all forgotten everything; I never forget anything, I always remember everything.” There are different levels at which we can understand these words, each of us according to our own state of mind. This was important information for me that took time to assimilate…the solution was to go back to the Source.
And how can we remember how to go back to the Source? By connecting to our Higher Self that knows everything, that never forgets anything because it is connected to the Source. Only by going deep inside can we connect with our Higher Self and lift the veil of our ignorance. Swamiji’s so familiar phrase is “The key is inside of you.” This key inside of us opens the door to that dimension where we can find eternal happiness and true wisdom.
Swamiji told us that during his first meditations he went within, inside his body. He didn’t go anywhere far away, just within. During one such meditation he tried to understand his inner organs and circulatory systems, like the circulation of blood in his body. He looked until he could really see all the parts of his body with his inner eyes. At another time he also said that if he mentally went inside his body he could repair it. Later, I learned that by visualizing our inner organs in this way, and loving them, we have the power to cure ourselves of all kinds of diseases.
Has anyone here seen the movie, “Eat, Pray, Love”? It’s about a woman, played by Julia Roberts, searching for a deeper, more spiritual aspect to life. At one stage she meets an old sage who gives her the advice to “just smile at your liver.” I wonder… how many people know exactly where their pancreas is, or their liver? How many people say hello to their foot, or stomach, or thymus gland? If we want to connect with this planet, with this universe, we first need to get to know and understand our inner organs through loving them. If our organs are in a perfect state and feel loved it means that we are also ready for more.
In thinking about Swamiji’s words and trying to better understand his message, I began finding some practical methods to help me to connect with my organs and regain my health. It’s only with practice that we can gain experience and find the key that opens the door which will then lead to the bridge that connects us to the rest of this vast universe of consciousness, a consciousness where we are all one. One with one another, with this amazing planet and with all the animal and plant species and matter that live on it and in it.
To finish, I would like to share an experience that may throw some light on what I really want to convey to you all.
It was evening. I was sitting on the front steps of what is today Swamiji’s house, facing the gardens – but back in those days it was the Ashram office. I was waiting for some people who had just come back from seeing Swamiji in Cuddalore. Like usual, they were sure to have some news from Swamiji. As for myself, I had a transcendental question in mind – “How could I see this universe with different eyes?” One of the people who came from Cuddalore had brought some vibhuti from Swamiji to share with everyone. Without moving from the place where I was sitting, I took the vibhuti and put just a pinch of it on my tongue. That tiny bit of vibhuti was enough to transport me to another way of seeing and feeling. I noticed a golden beetle passing in front of my feet. Even though it was small my eyes were seeing this little insect magnified and this was not my imagination. The love I began to feel for this tiny animal was far beyond my comprehension, it was definitely not coming from me. Tears began to flood my eyes and then I heard Swamiji’s voice: “If I have so much love for this diminutive insect, then imagine how much love I can feel for you all.”
If we could love this planet with just a fraction of the love Swamiji had for this beetle, we would never again cause any harm whatsoever to this planet and to all the beings that live on her.