About this Blog

This Blog is a collection of excerpts from talks given by Sri Swami Vishwananda. Please note that this Blog does not focus on dates, background and the exact original way of how Swamiji delivered the speech. We edit the talks slightly, presenting them in a kind of “poetic” format. This means we choose certain paragraphs from a talk which reflect a particular theme.
Read them as pieces of Divine Wisdom, meditate upon the words and just feel how Swamiji is addressing you with His words.

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Extract from Sri Swami Vishwananda's Satsang

Study Circle Mauritius

11th January 2011

Extract from a letter to his nuns by St. Theophan the Recluse (STR) from chapter 8 of his book: …don’t allow the urge to miss this or that Divine Service tempt you because of a need to complete necessary work. Remember that any work cannot be successful if God’s blessing is not upon it…

Sri Swami Vishwananda: Here you see when people work outside they are not aware of God’s grace in it and the work becomes mechanical. Life becomes routine. One day passes and the next day is the same. We can come and the same routine happens and life goes on like that. And then there’s nothing really happening in one’s life, because in one’s life there is not the grace of God into it. So that is what that means.

STR: Do not incriminate yourselves. Secondly, don’t be tempted to yield to the artificially attractive idea of staying in your cell while the others are going to Church out of the wish to pray with a little more fervency in solitude. Aren’t there other times for solitary prayers than the hours set aside for common prayer?

SSV:…Some people go to prayer in the morning and in the evening, but some say “No we will do our meditation in the room by ourselves, solitude etc…”, but it’s all rubbish. You see, community prayer is very important, but for personal prayer everyone can do it anytime. When they can sit and do rubbish things and talk and waste their time in other things, how come they can’t take their time to do their personal prayer? When there is community prayer everyone has to go...

STR: If so, then pray alone at those times. You must always go to the common service established by the rule. Here, in assembly, prayer is warmer and more fervent, and always more fruitful.

SSV: Now you see what is said? Prayer is more fruitful, because what you get in community prayer is stronger than [in] personal prayer. Remember when I said last time what Jesus said: When two or three are gathered in my name I shall be around. There is a similar parable in the Gita that Krishna said: Within the community of Man, whomever is praising my name, I shall be among them. He didn’t say one person chanting, but the community prayer. The mutual love is stronger there, because the people forget about their own egoistical pride for themselves and they are concentrating on the Divine, even if it is just out of pride. The community [being] altogether creates another atmosphere, another energy. Very often the mind tries to find excuses not to do it, but who is at loss? [It is] the person himself [who loses].

STR: “Where two or three are gathered in my name”, says the Lord, “there am I in the midst of them.”(Matthew, 18:20), and where there is God there is every spiritual good. What a pity that some people deprive themselves of this treasure! Doesn’t it happen that some who stay in their cells not only miss the common prayer, but, also, don’t manage to pray at home, and in this way do two wrongs – break the rules and harm themselves, as well? Therefore, isn’t it better to set yourself a rule once and for all never to yield to such a thought?

SSV: What he is saying here is that excuses are many. Even if you think you are sitting in your room trying to pray by yourself, it is fruitless and you are breaking the first rule itself. The rule of obedience is gone.

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