Say Thou, Thee, Thine – Br. Shankara

Sunday, September 6, 2015

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During September we will focus on Bhakti Yoga, often called the “path of devotion.” This spiritual practice is grounded in love of God for love’s sake alone; through that love and devotion you may attain conscious union with the Divine. Great spiritual teachers who recommend the bhakta’s path include Sri Krishna, the sages Narada and Patanjali, Sri Chaitanya, and Sri Ramakrishna.

Swami Sridharananda
Swami Sridharananda

In a recent conversation, Swami Sridharanandaji* said, “‘I am’ is a distorted, mutilated reflection of the truth that ‘He Is.’ We have only to cleanse the reflecting medium — the mind — to see this truth ….”

What does the Swami mean by “He?” In Chapter 13 of Bhagavad Gita, Sri Krishna tells Arjuna, “He (the supreme Brahman) is within and without; He lives in the live and the lifeless … Undivided, He seems to divide into objects and creatures; sending creation forth from Himself, He upholds and withdraws it … The supreme Brahman in this body is also known as the Witness. It makes all our actions possible, and, as it were, sanctions them, experiencing all our experiences. It is the infinite Being, the supreme Atman …”

In this talk, Br. Shankara discusses what the Swami and Sri Krishna said. Then, together, we explore what happens when, as part of your spiritual practice, you deliberately and consistently replace the words “I – Me – Mine” with “Thou – Thee – Thine.”

*Swami Sridharananda now heads the Ramakrishna Mission’s work in Australia and New Zealand. Previously he served as Head of the Sri Ramakrishna Math & Ramakrishna Mission Sevashrama in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India.