Swami ji said…
We worship God, pray to the Almighty, perform rituals, go on pilgrimages and try to seek God’s blessings in every possible way from a very young age. As children we follow the instructions, pertaining to our religion, that are given to us by our elders and do – as we are told – while offering prayers etc. in our sacred places of worship. We grow accustomed to going to various religious institutions on certain special and sacred days of the week and year and do so dutifully. But , what we need to ask ourselves is that when we make an attempt to follow religious directions – do we do so as if they were a mere formality ; treat them purely as regular religious practices that we are supposed to perform outwardly – or do we attempt to understand the ‘sacred’ nature of the divine moment that we are fortunate enough to be blessed with – while praying to Him? Do we feel connected with ‘divinity’ and experience His sublime presence within us ? It is possible that, at times, while offering prayers, we could momentarily feel, that our prayers and worship of God would be incomplete – unless we did so – in a specific place of worship, like a temple for instance.
It is during such moments of dilemma and confusion that we need to search for answers deep within ourselves. On reflection we might recall the words – ‘ Your body is a temple in which the soul resides and it is your duty to keep it clean.’ If we were to deliberate on the essence of these words – then – the need to keep our hearts pure would be foremost. The ‘heart’ is the seat of God and it is here – in the heart – that we must find Him, place Him and experience Him. The heart in which God resides would but naturally be suffused with love, joy, purity – one that wishes good for others and is happy in their happiness and progress. We go to ‘external’ places of worship to offer prayers to Him , but , tend to forget that He is ‘internally’ within us, with us – all the time. It is thus essential for us to understand this eternal Truth at the earliest and feel His presence in our heart. We need to remember…’ प्रार्थना करते समय ये जरूरी नहीं है कि व्यक्ति किसी पूजा स्थल में ही पूजा करे … आवश्यक यह है कि व्यक्ति के मन में ईश्वर की उपस्थित का एहसास होना चाहिए…”
Thus, all out earnest efforts should be made by us to not sully our heart and make it impure in any way. Would God wish to reside in a heart that is filled to the brim with grievances and anger for others, thinking of destructive ways of causing another person’s downfall ? We will fail miserably in all aspects of life , if , we are unable to draw God within us. No prayers in any specific place of worship can come to our rescue until we have seated God on the throne of our heart. We would live a life most fulfilling if we did this – as every action , every thought and every word said by us , henceforth , would have a pure intent ; selfishness would surrender to selflessness and dishonesty would give way to honesty – as God would not want to see it happen any other way than this.
The revered depiction of Lord Hanuman baring His heart , showing Ma Sita and Lord Ram – seated in it , conveys a very deep meaning. That God chooses to stay in the heart of the pious, devotional and loving; and that a true devotee carries God and Guru in his heart, and need not look anywhere else to find them.’ ‘Ishwar’ ko agar hum apne ‘mann’ mein utarenge toh woh avashya utrenge…’