The present booklet contains fragments of personal advice and suggestions tendered by Sri Anandamayi Ma to some of Her devotees at different times. As these formed part of letters (in Bengali) dictated by Mother in reply to their own supplications, their language bears upon it the native simplicity and freshness of the original messages without the least deterioration owing to the mechanism of transmission.
An analysis of the booklet would show that Mother's words are concerned with various situations arising in a man's life when under the pressure of circumstances he feels himself utterly helpless, hopeless and forlorn. Bereavements, disillusionments and a feeling of frustration in life, attacks of hostile force within, waning of faith, vagaries of an uncurbed and erratic mind, protracted physical ailments these are some of the necessary evils incidental to ordinary human existence on earth. In every case it will be found that Mother has suggested practically the same sovereign remedy - viz, the cultivation of the habit of remembering God and taking His Holy Name supplemented by an unconditional surrender to His Will and an unshaken belief that all His dispensations are wise and for our good. It is true that the instructions conveyed in this collection were given to particular individuals and under particular circumstances; nevertheless, they have about them the ring of an eternal and universal appeal to mankind, irrespective of caste, cred, sex, age or nationality. These who have the good fortune of knowing Mother more closely are aware that she has not on Her part any personal bias towards an particular line of approach as against the others and that if in the case of a sadhaka the exigencies of individual predisposition and competence demand exclusiveness in a particular direction she never hesitates to recommend it.
Mother accepts the Supreme Ideal of man as one and the same. But she says that on account of difference of outlook consequent on and ways of thought, paths of attainment become necessarily different. All these differences are true; but they are only superficial. What really counts for in each case is, whether one has or has not the sincerity of heart, a truth-seeking spirit and a genuine thirst of the soul coupled with unceasing activity and undaunted faith and a stainless moral character. Detachment from worldly affairs and devotion. To the Divine Ideal are the chief assets for a pilgrim on the path of the Infinite.
In every age, on every occasion, in every turn of fortune, in the field of action and in the stillness, a man should therefore have a single Aim before him on which his mind's eye may be set and it should shine as if it were the pole-star in his mental firmament. To him it should be like the majestic lordship of the Supreme Father, like the abounding Grace of the great Mother, like the ever flowing sweet Spring of the Eternal Beloved; it may also be like the impersonal but self-conscious Bliss of the Divine Being; it may even be like the hidden Essence of his own soul. It is in the direction of this Supreme Objective that a man should always be consciously striving - through action, through knowledge and through love. In whatever condition a man may happen to find himself at the moment of awakening he should bear in mind that his path really stretches out before him from there; he has only to exert himself to the best of his powers and proceed along the path. If it is true that a man through his limited action cannot reach upto the Goal, it is also true that no effort, however insignificant, goes in vain if it is sincere. Every genuine effort, however imperceptible in its littleness, has a value of its own as a means to the End; and when it is rightly put forth, this End is bound to be realized in its own time. But the supreme End is above all means. We have to move forward along the path and utilize the resources accessible to us. For who knows at what Great Moment the Supreme Reality will reveal Itself in all its resplendent glory? When once the Vision dawns upon the soul, the defilements and impurities clinging to it from the immemorial last and accumulated through the ages will vanish in a single instant like mists at dawn before the rays of the rising sun. The finite assumes the role of the Infinite when the Infinite smiles upon it and, being freed from all limitations and disabilities of mundane life, it begins to live, move and have its being within to live, move and have its being within the Infinite. One has naturally to start with a definite plan of self-discipline suited to one's tastes and capacities and arranged in a certain order of temporal and logical sequence, but when once His Grace shows Itself, the stiff formalities of rigid conventions sink into insignificance. All fetters are then snapped asunder and the "Impossible" not only becomes possible, but enters into the actual fiber of our being. Peace and Freedom are eternally restored to the soul and man realizes the Highest Goal of his existence.
This tittle book is verily a lustrous string of precious pearls fit to be always worn round the neck by every devoted child of Mother. I heartily welcome its publication and congratulate both the compiler and the translator on the exquisite sense of propriety they have shown in the selection and rendering of the pieces
The second volume of Mätri Väni, containing additional selections from the sayings of Mother, provides us with another spiritual treasure. Her message is both timeless and timely, for a world filled with tensions and confusion needs to be constantly reminded that all our sufferings and tribulations can be traced to one primary cause alienation from God, the source of our being. Mother aptly points out that all those who are steeped in worldliness are the actual denunciates, foregoing the bliss of God-realization for the sake of paltry, ephemeral material pleasures. Again and again She reminds us that we who are blessed with the possession of a human body have to live in accordance with our exalted destiny, concentrating all our efforts on the only worthwhile goal, realization of our immortal nature. While in the ultimate sense time is a delusion, but for all practical purposes time is the most valuable commodity which must not be squandered. Consequently it behaves us ceaselessly to invoke the divine name. This is the way to cope with whatever problems confront us and to remove bad karma. Utilizing any and all devices that will remind us of the divine presence, we shall assuredly overcome mäyä. While Mother acknowledges that normally mãya holds mankind in a vice- like grip, she makes it clear that mäyäitself contains the key to our liberation, for “where there is a veil of ignorance, there is also a door to Knowledge”. It is by suffering that suffering is overcome, because without suffering few would see the need for self- purification which leads to the unfoldment of our immortal Self. The pilgrimage to immortality may appear arduous and unattractive at first, but it has to be undertaken, for it will lead us to our true home from which we have been absent too long, exposing us to the dualities of worldly life and the cycle of birth and rebirth.
Endurance courage are essential requirements on the spiritual path. God- realization is not bestowed upon cowards. Just as did Arjuna, each one of us has to act heroically, slaying our weaknesses. There is no escape from the battlefield of life, since any attempt to evade our duty will only prolong the ordeal, keeping us in bodily captivity. Instead we must confidently engage in battle, wielding the unfailing weapon of japa. God will not withhold the price of victory, blissful immortality, which is none other than our own true nature.
Mother’s advice is meant for enunciates and householders alike, for She advocates regarding all our duties as service to God who is immanent in all beings and conditions. Actually, we are all ashramites, since where is there a boundary, an area where God is not? All distinctions are part of our limited consciousness. In truth, mine and thin do not exist. Mother is never apart from us. It is to this level of realization that she urges us to advance. There, where only one is, all suffering ceases. And it is from the realization of Oneness that Mother addresses us. Thus Her sayings originate horn a level beyond time, space causality. Consequently, any analysis of [ice personality or her motives from a dualistic level of consciousness is futile. As an unruffled lake at night clearly and accurately reflects the moon shining upon it, likewise Mother mirrors our own state of consciousness. Our visions of her and our interpretation of her advice constitute a reflection of our spiritual understanding. Ultimately, we must attain that level where we realize that she and we are one. May many a reader of this precious book be blessed with that attainment?
Matri Vani (Vol. II) consisting of three hundred sixty invaluable sayings of Sri Anandamayee Ma, which was originally published more than twenty years before, has now been divided into two volumes for the convenience of readers, because the book was a quite bulky one and inconvenient to handle properly.
We are now happy to publish the book in two parts, thoroughly revised, in handy size, for the convenience of all English speaking devotees.
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