At the outset, I offer my pranams at the lotus feet of my sadguru Sri Sri Sri Ganapati Sacchidananda Swamiji.
This book contains the English translation of His speeches from Telugu Bhaktimala pertaining to the period 1978/79 (the first Telugu Bhaktimala) to Sep 1993. The translation of speeches from the Bhaktimala Oct 1993 up to 2008 was earlier released under the title “Glimpses of Bhaktimala Vol. 1 & 2 “.
To a Datta devotee, the beauty and the essence contained in the Speeches given by him Holiness need no introduction. In his own lucid and wonderful style, He easily communicates complex subjects such that they hold on tightly our mind and heart. He creates in us in interest to listen to them time and again. As we read his speeches repeatedly, a desire to change for the better, a desire to inculcate those characteristics & taints that are deeply loved by Him, crops up in us. We cherish his speeches!
This book is a collection of many such wonderful treasures. They contain infinite gems spread across the entire book. Pick any page from his speeches and read, you are undoubtedly going to find at least one lesson to be learnt, if not more. From within this treasure of speeches, the significance of a Guru in a person’s life, the power contained in Guru’s gaze how he shifts us from our present path to the path that leads to God, Guru’s treatment process and many more critical lessons.
‘You are all the plans in my garden: I am gardener who nurtures and cares for you. I pull out all the thorns and weeds and make sure that you will, one day, blossom with many beautiful flowers’ – says Appaji In one speech. How fortunate are we that he has selected us as plants within his garden! How much effort he is putting in so as to reform us!
Translation of these speeches was a wonderful experience that had in it many ups and downs so that I could learn a few lesson in life. Firstly, the translation itself went at a dismally slow pace, no matter how hard I tried. After working on this for over a couple of years, I finally submitted the entire draft to Sri Datta Vijayananda Teertha Swamiji (Bala Swamiji) in Oct 2010. I did not however receive the permission to publish it, until about this book would come up during m meetings with Sri Bala Swamiji. Although I was eager to share this treasure with everyone, I never wanted to hurry Him up. ‘Swamiji, let it happen per your will’- and not our will. Had I hurried him up, I would have missed out on all the wonderful lessons, including the most important one – ‘patience’, that were in store for me.
Towards the end of April 2013, one day after the Srichakra puja, Sri Datta Vijayananda Teertah Swamiji expressed his wish that these speeches should be brought out in a book format.
‘We are all instruments in the hands of our Sadguru’ – says Appaji, I find this quotation very touching, it is his energy, his grace and compassion and his blessings that this book could ever get completed. I offer my wholehearted Pranams to him for showering this grace.
When I was hunting for Telugu Bhaktimalas of 1970’s and 1980’s, I realized that it was almost impossible to find them. We reached out to many devotees who had subscribed to Bhaktimala in those days, but were not successful. We them spoke to Dr. Kolli Krishnakumari aunty of Vijayawada, who has been zealously safeguarding these treasures. She was very kind to allow me to keep them form over two years. Thank you aunty!
I also want to thank Mr. Satyanarayana C Raju & family, Mr. K.S.R. Krishna Prasad & family for willingly coming forward and offering the financial seva, but for which this project would not have taken a book form.
I thank Srinivas and Kavita of Sachin graphics for the timely completion of the Printing.
This is just a small attempt at translation, many speeches on the similar topics have been grouped under one single heading for easy understanding. As far as possible I have tried to retain the original essence as is during translation. Yet some errors could have crept in. I beg Appaji to forgive me for any such mistakes I may have inadvertently made in this.
I wish to submit this book at the lotus feet of Sri Appaji.
|Swamiji treats devotees and non-devotees equally||1|
|I search for devotees who have been related to me earlier||4|
|Types of devotees||7|
|Attitude towards Sadguru||11|
|Does a person become a saint merely by wearing ochre robes?||15|
|Participating in religious/spiritual activities is purely to uplift yourself||18|
|Do not follow a Sadguru merelyfor fulfilling your desire'S||23|
|Satsangs and good associations can alter your life||28|
|Nama Japa can redeem even sinners||32|
|The diverse ways of praying to the Lord are all various ways to increse our concentration||36|
|Seek the energy to tide over difficulties||40|
|Yesterday's thoughts should notbe remembered today||45|
|Every home should be an abode of spiritual knowledge||50|
|Truth leads to liberation||52|
|Self-centeredness has become deep rooted in man||55|
|Illusion and ignorance||62|
|The person who acts out of ego is a fool||66|
|Give up caste differences||69|
|Wealth is also an intoxicating substance||72|
|Even seemingly trivial desires need to be given up||75|
|Postponing tasks is also laziness||79|
|Live in the present||82|
|The powerful language of vibrations||87|
|Swamiji .. .I seek Jnana||93|
|Learn to spend a few minutes with God every day||98|
|Disciplines for Datta devotees||101|
|Simple steps to lead a happy life||104|
|Do not trade with God||108|
|Perform meritorious deeds with full involvement||111|
|Carry with you the good habits that you have learnt at the ashram||116|
|Noble people help others without any expectations||121|
|Develop a broad outlook||125|
|Accept punishments for your mistakes||126|
|Significance of conducting house-warming celebrations||132|
|Times of happiness and times of sorrows||143|
|This visible world is a training ground||147|
|A change for the good should envelop the entire universe||149|
|Friendship with Sadguru is of no use if there is no change for the good||151|
|Which boon should be sought from the Lord?||153|
|Bless me so as to be born along with You, my Lord||155|
|Value of Prasada received||157|
|My methods are different from those of others||159|
|Appointment with God||164|
|Services or charity offered should always be to the best of ability||174|
|Message for the disabled||176|
|Who are our elders?||178|
|Learn to scientifically analyze our scriptures||180|
|Significance of lighting the Kartika Deepa||187|
|Significance behind applying holy ash (Vibhooti)||195|
|Significance of Brahmi muhurtam||201|
|The greatness of the three sandhya times (Trisandhya mahima)||205|
|Significance of holy water (teertha)||211|
|Value of the copper bracelet||218|
|What is himsa? (injury)||219|
|Essence of Mahabharata||224|
|Greatness of earth||230|
|Essence of Gayatri||233|
|Time teaches us about Brahma (Kaalatreya bodhitam Brahma)||235|
|History of the Ashram||237|
|Life in Ashram||240|
|Food is Brahma (annam-brahma)||243|
|Practise of dharma (righteousness)||246|
|Food for every being is pre-arranged by the Almighty.||251|
|Specialities in God's creation||254|
|The essence of the game 'snakes and ladders'||256|
|Saamuhika archana (mass worship)||258|
|Recitation of the mantra (mantra japa)||261|
|Dhwani (sound) is also a form of the Almighty||264|
|Contemplating on the Paramatma (Paramatma dhyana)||273|
|Introduction to the self||276|
|The energy of God||280|
|How can the microcosm understand the macrocosm?||284|
|Importance of a stable mind.||288|
|Significance of our teeth.||290|
|The significance of colours||293|
|Greatness of silence||295|
|Saligramas and precious stones||298|
|Idols are installed as per Agama shastra||299|
|Datta Darshanarn-Objective behind the movie||304|
|How to offer prayer?||309|
|What is good fortune?||312|
|Pushkara or Kumbh mela||316|
|Role of a woman||321|
|The New Year should begin with activities related to dharma||323|