Pujya Swamiji The Mahatma I Know Sep 2017- Article

Lessons from Pujya Swamiji’s teachings – by Swami Paramarthananda ji

1. Veda is a primary means of knowledge, like the sense organs. This means Veda is valid by itself.
2. Attempting to validate Vedas through scientific analysis or mystic experience is a misguided approach. By this, we are reducing Vedas to a secondary means of knowledge, like inference.
3. Treating a primary means of knowledge like a secondary means is worse than rejecting it. Once we fall into this trap, there will be endless problems.
4. We continue to accept the validity of the eyes, in spite of occasional optical illusions. Similarly, we have to accept the validity of the Vedas, in spite of certain seeming aberrations in certain portions of the veda.
5. If we reject the eyes because of the occasional optical illusions, we are the losers. Similarly, if we reject the Vedaa because of certain seeming aberrations, we are the losers.
6. Respecting Mahatmas does not mean unconditional acceptance of all their statements.
7. We should never surrender our intellect in the name of Shradha , Bhakti or Saranagati.
8. “Transcending the intellect – in the name of spiritual pursuit – will not lead us anywhere.
9. Samadhi, as a state of stillness or concentration, cannot lead us to any new knowledge, material or spiritual.
10. Any knowledge – material or spiritual – has to take place in the intellect only.
11. Any knowledge – material or spiritual – has to arise by the employment of a relevant means of knowledge.
12. Dakshinamurthi’s silence cannot be taken literally as a non-verbal communication; because, silence is not a means of knowledge.
13. Self-realization is not a mystic experience. Self-realization is nothing but Self-knowledge. And, Self-knowledge is nothing but the clear understanding of the fact that the ever-experienced Self i.e. the “ever-evident I” is the non-dual brahman.
14. To grasp the message of Vedanta, we do not require any new experience. Whatever experiences a normal human being undergoes are more than enough to grasp the message of Vedanta.
15. Desires are said to be the root cause of all evils. In fact, it is the blind demonization of all desires as a whole that is the root cause of all evils. The faculty of desire is a unique privilege enjoyed by a human being. Without the faculty of desire, one cannot even pursue Self-knowledge or liberation.
16. Abusing the faculty of desire due to ignorance and immaturity alone is the cause of all problems.
17. Moksha is not something attained through a single path or multiple paths. For moksha is not a destination. It is our very nature which has been disowned due to ignorance.
18. Whatever is disowned due to ignorance has to be claimed through knowledge.
19. Whenever we say that Self-knowledge alone is the means of moksha, it does not mean that we are fanatics. It only means that we have diagnosed the problem correctly.
20. Self-knowledge cannot be gained through several methods. It is possible only by employing the appropriate means of knowledge i.e., by exposing oneself to the teaching of Vedanta.
21. Any system of teaching which reveals the fact that “I am the whole” is Vedanta- irrespective of the language in which it conveys this fact.
22. One who knows Vedanta and knows how to handle its words properly, can communicate its message directly to a prepared student.
23. Self- knowledge is an extra-ordinary knowledge. It does not mean that a man of knowledge should resort to an extra-ordinary life-style.

Lessons learnt from Swamiji ‘s life.
· It is possible to show unconditional love and compassion towards all
· It is possible to accommodate everyone irrespective of who the other person is
· It is possible to help everyone, known or unknown, unconditionally
· It is possible to pay attention to every single person even when one is surrounded by a huge crowd
· It is possible to listen to everyone intently even when there are endless people
· It is possible to remain relaxed in spite of hectic activity
· It is possible to live a life of deliberate thoughts, deliberate words and deliberate actions
· It is possible to live a life without any agenda of one’s own
· It is possible to live a life, taking things as they come
· It is possible to derive inspiration and motivation from oneself in spite of old age and poor health
· It is possible, but not that easy, to emulate Pujya Swamiji

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Swami Dayananda Biography

Sri Swami Dayananda Saraswati is a distinguished, traditional teacher of Vedanta. His depth of understanding and nuanced appreciation of Western culture makes him that rare teacher who can communicate the vision of non-duality to modern listeners. He is able to make one see, with immediacy, the truth of oneself as the whole.
Swami Dayananda has been teaching Vedanta in India for more than four decades, and around the world since 1976. In his public talks abroad, Swamiji has spoken at many of the most prestigious American universities, and has addressed international conventions, UNESCO and the United Nations, where he participated in the Millennium Peace Summit.

A teacher of teachers, Swami Dayananda designed and taught seven resident in-depth Vedanta courses, each spanning 30 to 36 months. Five were conducted in India, and two in the United States. Each course graduated about 60 qualified acharyas, teachers, who are now teaching around the world. More than one hundred are now swamis and are highly respected as scholars and teachers throughout India and abroad.

Under Swami Dayanandaji’s guidance, numerous centers for Vedic teaching have been founded around the world. The two main centers in India are the Arsha Vidya Ashram in Rishikesh and the Arsha Vidya Gurukulam in Coimbatore. In the U.S., the main center is the Arsha Vidya Gurukulam at Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania. At present there are at least sixty centers in India and abroad that carry on the same tradition of Vedantic teaching.

In addition to teaching, Swami Dayananda has initiated and supported various philanthropic efforts. The All India Movement (AIM) for Seva, inaugurated in November, 2000, brings medical, educational, nutritional and infrastructure assistance to villagers in the remote areas of India. This movement enjoys the blessing of all traditional Hindu spiritual leaders who have united as a single body, the Acarya Sabha, through the coordinating efforts of Swami Dayananda. In November 2001, Swami Dayananda convened the first World Congress for the Preservation of Religious Diversity in Delhi, inaugurated by the Dalai Lama and the then Prime Minister Mr.A.B.Vajpayee. An important outcome of the Congress is the formation of a Global Commission for the Preservation of Religious Diversity, spearheaded by Swami Dayananda. The Commission had its inaugural meeting in Bangkok in June, 2002. Swami Dayananda was also active in forming and participating in the Women’s Global Peace Initiative, which convened at the United Nations in Geneva in October 2002.