Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba explains to Mrs. Joy Thomas, the author of the book "Life Is A Dream, Realize It!", the purpose of life. It is a wonderful lesson for all of us, shedding light on why we are born, why we endeavour in human form, and what our objective in life is. The "Life Is..." series of books is published by Sri Sathya Sai Sadhana Trust, Publications Division and you can purchase "Life Is A Dream, Realize It!" e-book via: Smashwords, Google Play Books, and Amazon.
Excerpt I: Life's Aim
(In the third paragraph, the Lord refers to the author's childhood and the circumstances surrounding it, especially His influence in it. It is to be understood clearly that this is the author's personal experience and circumstances differ from one person to another. Every person's challenges are unique and personal to him or her.)
Thus it was that I spent considerable time in prayer for all of us, who might be experiencing inharmonious family relationships. Early one morning, the long prayers brought about a stilling of the mind and with the ego voices of self-will and desire quiet, I heard Swami’s voice in my heart speaking ever so gently and lovingly:
My dear children, awake! Awake! Awake! There is no longer time for slumber! You have been asleep and dreaming for thousands of lifetimes. If you do not awake now, this chance may not come again for a thousand more. Come with Me. Separation is no longer the order of the day. I separated Myself from Myself, so that I could love Myself more. The experience is finished. I want all of my Selves to return and merge into Me, the One Self.
I gave many of you the advantage of an unhappy childhood, including conflict or separation from your mother or father. In doing this, I removed from you the temptation to become attached to human parents or a specific family situation. That left you with only one option — that is, to attach yourself to Me. Why do you not avail yourself of this opportunity, instead of continually seeking those relationships which can never satisfy you? Even if your childhood had been as idyllic as you would have liked, it is not your mother’s love that you need. Ultimately, it is not even the love of this Name and Form that you long for. Your deepest innermost urge is to return to Yourself — to love Yourself — to become the Being, the Awareness, and the Bliss, which is all you ever were and all you will ever be.
Let go of the past. Stop trying to get from each other what you still think you missed in childhood or in marriage. You will never find anyone who is enough — not even Me. Love Yourself, Know Yourself, Be Yourself. Only You will ever be enough. Can you not love Yourself, because I love You? Have I not shown you My love over and over again? Did I not virtually move heaven and earth to bring you to Me?
I have asked all of my devotees to repeat daily the mantra, “I am God. I am no different from God.” Now, I ask you specifically to follow that instruction. It will be more helpful than any other one thing you can do. Now, remember that I love you and do as I do. Love Yourself.
These words left me with the firm assurance that everything that has ever happened has happened for the purpose of bringing us home to Him. How can we blame anyone for anything, when He is the Director and the Script Writer? We are asleep and dreaming. Whatever it takes to weary us of the dream world and to wake us up to eternal Bliss is what will happen.
A friend was telling me recently of a dream that she had of seeing Baba operating a huge switchboard. What an appropriate picture! For even though His work is beyond our comprehension or even our imagination, this symbol of the switchboard gives us a glimpse of what is going on. He connects each of us with the right caller. Whatever our learning requirements are, we are matched with another whose requirements are complementary to ours. Have you ever heard the expression, used frequently about a married couple, “They deserve each other”? Whoever you are relating to at this moment, you deserve! They are in your life to help you wake up to your Reality. Be grateful to them. Love them. As soon as you have learned what you need to learn and changed yourself, the person who came to teach you will leave naturally, you will be moved into another situation, or the relationship will become joyful and rewarding. Remember, it’s all up to you. It’s your dream.
Excerpt II: The Assurance
The principle of Godhead is something beyond expression and explanation. It has to be experienced. Once experienced, the richness, the fullness, the extent, the depth of that experience can never be communicated to another. Man must feel that his highest destiny is to have that experience. He is not a despicable creature, born in slime or sin, destined to eke out a drab existence and then, be extinguished forever. He is immortal. He is eternal.
So, when the call comes from the region of immortality, he responds with his whole heart. He refuses to believe that he will die. He laughs at death and treats it as a harmless casual visitor. There is something in him that whispers a challenge to death.
Man is a mixture of the mortal and the immortal. If liberation means the stoppage of grief and the acquisition of joy, then it is easy. What you have to do is to place all your burdens on God; that makes you carefree and grief-free. Then, when you take everything as the divine play (leela) of the Lord you love, you clap your hands in bliss whatever may happen, for it is all His play and you are as happy as He is, when His plans are being carried out.
The space (akasha) encased in the pot must become one with the space, which traverses the entire Universe by negation of the limitation (upadhi) which is just an artificial creation of the deluded mind. The attachment to limitation must disappear and the inferior status of manhood, which now satisfies, must give place to unlimited Godhood, which is man’s genuine status. That is the task for which Sai is calling you; that is the work for which I have come.
A Judge of the Supreme Court may, while at home, play with his grandchild. He may get down on all fours, allow the little fellow to mount his back, then crawl on the floor when the child cries out, “Giddap!” However, his status as a judge does not suffer diminution, nor does he forget it. You too must always be conscious of the high calling on which you have come; you should not disgrace it by any meaningless act, word, or thought. I have come to give you the courage to conceive of yourself as the God Principle you really are. I will give you the intelligence and the power (dheeshakti) to grasp the reality. That alone can destroy the delusion born of ignorance.
Step by step you reach the end of the road. One act followed by another leads to a good habit. Listening, listening, you get prodded into action. Resolve to act, to mix only in good company, to read only elevating books, to form the habit of repeating the Name of God — then ignorance will vanish automatically. The bliss, which will well up within you as a result of contemplating the Embodiment of Bliss, will drive out all grief and worry.
Move forward towards the Light and the shadow falls behind; move away from the Light and you have to follow your own shadow. Go every moment one step nearer to the Lord and then, Maya, the shadow, will fall back and will not delude you at all. Be steady; be resolved. Do not commit a fault or take a false step and then repent. To make the right decision first is better than having regret for the mistake made....
I have come to reform you and I won’t leave you, until I do that. Even if you attempt to get away before I do that, do not think that you can escape Me. I will hold on to you. I am not worried if you leave Me, for I am not anxious that there should be a huge gathering here around Me.... But, of one thing be assured. Whether you come to Me or not, you are all Mine. This Sai Maatha has the love of a thousand mothers towards Her children.... Whenever I appear to be angry, remember that it is only love in another form, I have not even an atom of anger in Me. I just evince My disappointment that you do not do as I direct. When I direct you along a line of action, reflect on My advice.... I shall be happy if you do so, for I do not like slavish obedience.
If you feel that My advice will help you reach the goal, follow it; if not, go to some other place. But, let Me tell you one thing: Wherever you go, you meet only Me. I am everywhere....
You might ask Me to speak about My own mystery. It is not easy to understand it. When you have the chance, gather all the joy you can. It is of no use to bolt the door after the thieves have robbed and fled. Seize this chance and do not repent later that you missed your opportunity. Remember, you have to come to Me, if not in this birth, at least within the next ten! Strive to acquire grace. Grace is the reward for spiritual practices (sadhana) and the highest sadhana is to follow the instructions of the Master.... Follow them sincerely and steadily and victory is yours.