10/14/2011 Comments Off on Gajendra Moksha
All these sacred stories and texts will be preaching to us an inner meaning. When we read the story of Prahlada, we will be thinking that Prahlada is good and that Hiranyakasipu is an atheist. But we must also think about what happened to them. If we go deep into the story, it will teach us that when we think in a good way, good things will happen to us; and if we think in a bad way, bad things will happen to us. So in this way for everything, the mind or our sankalpa, the desire, is the cause.
In the morning, I told you about Gajendra Moksha and other stories. Who is this Gajendra or the Lord of Elephants? Our story tells us that Gajendra was a king in his previous birth, and he took the form of an elephant on account of a curse pronounced on him by a sage. While he was going with the female elephants in the forest, he saw a lake. He wanted to take water from it; he went into the lake and a crocodile caught his foot. This Gajendra in his previous birth was a great king. King signifies another form of Atma. Atma is the King and Paramatma is the kingmaker. So the individual, who is one with the state of Atma, has become an animal on account of the curse given to him by a sage. When a king changed into an elephant, what does it mean? He let go of his Atma Drishti, or oneness with the Atma, and degraded himself into the form of an animal. Atma Drishti is just like the gait of a lion. When the lion is walking, it will be always going straight, but will never try to look back. And jiva drishti is just like the gait of a sheep. The sheep will never go straight. It will be afraid, and it will be always going with some fear in its mind. If we go with Atma Drishti, we shall be able to go straight and get happiness. But if we fall from the Atma Drishti to jiva drishti, sometimes we may become like animals. Like the king who became an elephant, we may experience difficulties in life. In daily life, also, if we happen to do a thing that is very bad, the elders remark, “Why did you do this? Are you an animal?” It does not mean that we are real animals. But our behavior in doing such an action is just like that of an animal. This elephant had forgotten the Atma Thathwa and was leading a life of attachment, of falsehood, conceit and arrogance. This elephant is entering the forest of life. When it is wandering in the forest of life, it becomes thirsty. What kind of thirst is it? It is related to the enjoyment of the senses. Immediately, it sees a lake. What is that lake? It is full of worldly desires and that is called the samsara or family. He wants to enjoy the pleasures of that samsara and he goes into that lake. He is too much seized with desires, which never let one think over what he is doing. Therefore, he puts both his legs in the lake. At once a crocodile, which can be compared to mamakara, or attachment or ahamkara or ego, catches hold of its leg. When it caught its leg, the elephant was not able to escape from it. He tried all means. The elephant found that its body had become very weak. Then it wanted to depend upon its mental capacity. It found that even the mental strength was also insufficient and could not help. Then it thought only of divine strength.
– Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba
Source: Summer Showers in Brindavan, 1972.