Sai Darshan Home
Date:8 Jul 1996 Occasion:Divine Discourse Place:Prashanti Nilayam

The Value Of Good Company

Human life is no doubt sacred, however due to company good and bad interchange. Dust, in the company of air will rise up but the same dust when in contact with water settles down to the bottom of pit. Dust does not have either wings to go up in sky, nor has it got legs to settle down. It is only due to its company, it can go up or come down. The good and bad company is the basis for the good and bad actions done by us.

"Good company leads to solitude, solitude leads to detachment, detachment to equanimity and equanimity to liberation". When we keep good company, it gives us pure and divine feelings. When we join bad company, it gives us bad thoughts, bad feelings. Mind receives bad emotions and it gives a scope for wicked actions. Therefore, it is very much essential that man must keep good company and cultivate human quality. Only with good company man can attain divinity, where as in bad company man becomes an animal. The animal nature is below the level of man and divinity is that which is above the level of man. It is very easy to get spoilt. But, it is very difficult reach a exalted height. Even though it is difficult, it must be our endeavor to reach exalted heights. Thoughts must be sacred, pure and proper. But unfortunately in the tender age itself man entertains bad company, therefore has bad thoughts and does wicked actions thereby wasting this golden age. All this, is the result of bad company, that is why it is said that "Tell me your company, I shall tell you what you are".

When you are in good position and times everyone comes by, around you . When circumstances change and adversity dawns then people turn away from you. This is not true friendship. What is friendship? Who is a true friend? The one who follows you like a shadow in times of difficulties, sorrows, trouble, anxieties and does not forsake you is a true friend. When we are in good position and authority you will find people around you. That is not sign of true friendship. Friendship is one which is same in pleasure, pain, loss and gains, like a shadow. Before befriending enquire into his background, habits discipline, behaviour and the company he keeps. If he is keeping wicked company you should not even look at his face. When he says Hello, just say good bye and keep going. For students in this age, character is very important. If character is not there it is equivalent to a living corpse. Never be a friend to one without character. Such a person will not have individual character, social character then what to say of national character. Therefore it is essential that man should have individual character, i.e. unwavering mind and steady looks must be cultivated. We must make efforts to have friendship with good people.

Iron when in contact with mud loses all its strength. When in company of fire it shines. When can you make your heart sacred? When you join good company it is like fire, it makes your heart sacred. When rust is removed it remains pure. When it is pure you can mould it the way you want. Iron which is pure can be moulded into any shape. It can be made round, semicircle or a circle any way you like. Every man must be refined. What is refinement? To remove the dirt and cultivate the virtuous qualities. In this world all the things we eat are naturally created, like rice, dal and various other things. We do not eat them in their natural form. We remove the husk from the rice. Then we cook it. Only after processing we can eat it. Similarly, gold and silver cannot be used in their natural state. It must be purified in many ways by heating it. Then we can make ornaments. Therefore for everything there is refinement. The education which you are undergoing today gives merely bookish knowledge and familiarity with text. There must be refinement pertaining to education also. How much ever you study, without culture it cannot be called education. It is not just for a living. Work is for livelihood, but education is for wisdom. We take it in wrong direction and consider it uplifting our life.

What is Sadhana? Japa, or meditation is not Sadhana. First know the truth. Serve the needy, parents, teachers and elders. You must respect and serve them. Do some more work for them if necessary. While hurting and disobeying your parents and elders, if you do Sadhana it is no Sadhana at all. This will not be accepted by God. First love living creatures then you will love God. Though every one is equal in a society, boys must remain with boys. If boys have connection with girls they are worse than dogs. When you are student, if you take wrong path you will become worse than dog. What kind of life you should have? If you do not worship God with both hands, if you do not sing the glory of Hari with your tongue and if you do not have compassion and truth, why then should you be born at all? End of education is character. That is true significance of our education. All kind of bad thoughts must be removed. Unless the head is empty, spiritual knowledge cannot be filled. In this tumbler there is water. How can you put milk into this? You have to throw the water out, and then fill it with milk. But you cannot pour milk in water, both will be spoilt. Our hearts should be filled with pure feelings which will make our parents happy. A son without character, studies without direction and a nation without character are useless. We must develop ourselves into persons with good character. This should be done with help of education.

You are the future citizens of tomorrow. You are the emancipators of the country If the youth is not proper today then country will be ruined. Student age is foundation to the mansion of life. That is Brahmacharyam or celibacy. On the foundation of Brahmacharyam a floor of householder is built. Over that, Vanaprastha is built and on that Sanyasa are built. Brahmacharyam, Grihastam, Vanaprastam and Sanyasam form a four storey building. Celibacy is a strong foundation for other three. If you are not proper in this stage itself the other three also will crumble. Therefore the foundation must be taken care of. This age is very precious and sacred. It is golden age. First of all fill love for God in your heart. Your heart is like a big tank. Fill it with water of love, your senses are taps. In every tap good water will come. Therefore as is the feeling in your heart so is the action. So you must fill your hearts with love. When heart is filled with love, your actions will also be full of love. In a well, if you throw a stone, the ripples created on the surface of water cover the area of the well. In the lake of your mind you throw a stone of good thoughts it will spread all over the body. From head to toe such thoughts will spread over. Therefore heart is very important. If heart is not there it is useless but today's students watch art but not the heart. Heart is inside, art is outside. Art is worldly, heart is only spiritual. Art is outward, heart is inward. This inward path is total, sacred, pure, unsullied, crystal, unpolluted and is the eternal truth.