A Question On Sadhana…

Sadhana is essentially the pathway to God. To reach the destination one has to be devoted to the chosen path with all earnestness. ….and along with it comes certain pre-requisites and essentials that entail the spirited journey… Dr John Hislop writes in detail… extracted from Sanathana Sarathi. Janurary 1980.

You say that you have been reading the various Sai books, but do not understand what Sadhana is, or what to do in Sadhana.

Swami tells us that Sadhana is the process of getting what we want, and it has three aspects. First, there is “vritti”, which means attraction to that which we want. Without this longing for what we want, Sadhana cannot get under way. But this “vritti” is not enough. The second factor of Sadhana is confidence in oneself. We need self confidence, that we have the ability to get what we want. However, longing for that which we want and confidence that we have the strength and talent to get it is still not enough. The third factor is action. Without action nothing happens. We have to actually gain what we want and make it ours.

Baba tells us that this triple Sadhana is as effective for worldly ends as for spiritual life. In other words, that which is the object of your longing and your action, you will get if you are brave and have strong confidence in yourself.

The awesome power implicit in this triple Sadhana is a secret, unknown to the general public but revealed to devotees who study Lord Sathya Sai Baba. Triple Sadhana is a Divine guarantee, so to speak, that by the intense application of Sadhana to your life, you will get what you want. This being so, it is of the greatest importance to discriminate between your many desires before you engage in the Sadhana that will get what you want.

What is worth wanting? What is worthy of Sadhana? Surely it is only that which will truly and fully satisfy your desire.

What is desire? Desire is God, expressed as a vital force of your life. Who are you? You are the highest; in your inner most being your potential is Divine. Will the low satisfy the highest? No! No value that is lesser than the Divine will truly and fully satisfy, desire. Only God is worth wanting. Only the Highest is worthy to be the object of Sadhana. No beauty short of Him, no treasure short of Him, no power short of His; nothing that is lesser than He, will totally and finally satisfy and bring to an end the torment of unrequited desire. Lord Sathya Sai is the eternal Beloved in each person’s heart, and desire will not be fulfilled so long as there is separation between the Beloved and oneself.

You are a Sai devotee, and thus you already have in your daily life the first two aspects of Sadhana. That is, you have sacred love for Him and are mightily attracted to Him. And your spiritual search is the evidence that you have the strength and confidence to do Sadhana. What you are puzzled about is the action aspect of Sadhana.

Why are you puzzled even while studying the Sai books? If I may venture to guess, there are too many impressions coming all at once about what to do: Mentioned in the books are a number of different activities and each one is called “Sadhana”. In this context Swami has given us a very important principle which merits your best attention.

Swami points out that a box may contain a hundred or more matches, each one of which is potential fire. But He asks us to consider that only one small feeble match is needed to start a huge forest fire that consumes everything in its path; even green and wet wood is burnt to ashes. There is no need to strike a hundred matches to start a big fire. A skilful and careful striking of one match will start a fire.

By this example Swami is telling us to do one Sadhana action and do it with the whole heart and mind. And, that is enough; the rest will inevitably follow.

For your Sadhana action, why not take the action of which Swami speaks most often. In this context He declares that sacred love is the Royal Highway td God. You already love and long for Sathya Sai; what is the action that corresponds to that sacred love? Well, by virtue of His Divine Grace, Swami even tells us this.

He Whom we love, we wish to behold and be with, all the time. So all the time have Lord Sathya Sai, the Beloved, as your Guide, Protector, Constant Companion ever loving and affectionate, despite your human faults, call upon Him to bestow His Grace and be with you always. He assures us that He hears and ever responds if you repeat His Name with sacred love and visualize His Form in your mind.

This is the action to complete Sai Sadhana, the repetition of the Sai Name with love and reverence, “Sai Ram, Sai Ram, Sai Ram,” and the visualization of the Sai Form—this Sadhana action from the working hour to the sleeping hour. When duty calls during the day and you must concentrate on your work, then in your mind address the Lord and tell Him that you are dedicating every moment of the work to His glory—then go ahead with full confidence and do your work. Swami says that dedication of your work and the result of your work to Him is tantamount to the repetition of His Name, and in this way the Name continues in mind and heart from the working hour to the sleeping hour.