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The God in Man

Tuesday February 15 2005 08:49 IST

By Karmayogi

Every man born is equal is the basis of democracy. It utters a spiritual truth that in his depth, man is spiritual and all spirits are equal. Not only in man, but also in inanimate objects, there is God. “He who is awake in that which sleeps” is the dictum of the Indian scriptures.

When the scripture says there is God in Man, Man takes it as Man is God. To particularise it, he feels “I am God”. It may sound outrageous that we make man so presumptuous. Especially, if you have intimate friends among the priests, they will disclose their inner belief in moments of confidence.

At those times, it will be very clear that this man who is an ordinary government employee has the audacity to conceive that he is God. Sri Aurobindo goes one step further humorously when he writes to his correspondents that it won't pay to think highly of oneself and rate oneself higher than God.

Ego, called ahankar, is there. Behind it is the Purusha. The Purusha is God. In our haste and ignorance, we mistake our ego to be God. Well, we take to a great saint such as Ramalinga Swamigal, Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, J. Krishnamurthy, Sri Aurobindo, or Ramana Maharshi. Is it not right we try to emulate them? Maharshi was in a cave, wore a loin cloth, was in Silence. Sri Aurobindo was in seclusion, had long hair and a beard. Ramalinga Swamigal wore white dress and shaved his head. We can't go to a cave or shave our head.

Is it not right we imitate them as far as we can? It appears to be right, maybe very much right. So, in the end we imitate the non-essentials like dress, beard, food, seclusion, etc. without inwardly attaining the Silence they had.

Sri Aurobindo was against writing about his habits, as his disciples would superstitiously imitate only that. To imitate is not wise, but it is nothing WRONG. Disciples often attempt to do what the Guru did, speak like the Guru, and think like the Guru. Maharshi tried to give moksha to his disciple Palaniswamy. His disciples have a temptation to attempt it. It is prevalent among the tribe of disciples. As long as ahankar does not usurp the Purusha, anything is all right. What a priest feels, how he considers the man in whose house he eats blessed is not our concern.

Let us look into ourselves. If the same trait is there - surely it will be - it is a danger signal. Any Asura wanted to be equal to God or better than God - Kamsa, Hiranya, Sishupala, etc. That way, we will tread the path of egoism, a path meant for the Asura. It is worthwhile examining every act of ours from this point of view. It will be helpful in this endeavour of sincerity if we do NOT imitate the Guru.
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