Talk 40

22nd September, 1936
Talk 40.

The Brahmin questioner resumed: "How do we know that action is ours or not?"

If the fruits of actions do not affect the person he is free from action.
D.: Is intellectual knowledge enough?

Unless intellectually known, how to practice it? Learn it intellectually first, then do not stop with that. Practise it. Maharshi then made certain remarks: "When you adhere to one philosophical system (siddhanta) you are obliged to condemn the others. That is the case with the heads of monasteries (matadhipatis)". All people cannot be expected to do the same kind of action. Each one acts according to his temperament and past lives. Wisdom, Devotion, Action (jnana, bhakti, karma) are all interlocked. Meditation on forms is according to one's own mind. It is meant for ridding oneself of other forms and confining oneself to one form. It leads to the goal. It is impossible to fix the mind in the Heart to start with. So these aids are necessary. Krishna says that there is no birth (janma [?]) to you, me, etc., and later says he was born before Aditya, etc. Arjuna disputes it. Therefore it is certain that each one thinks of God according to his own degree of advancement. You say you are the body in wakeful state; not the body in sleep. Bodies being several-fold for an individual, should not there be infinite capacities for God? Whichever method one follows, that method is encouraged by the Sages. For it leads to the goal like any other method.

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