Meaning of prayer, Asato ma sadgamay, tamaso ma jyotirgamay by Swami Rama
Love does not mean attachment.
Do not ask anything from God, because God already knows your needs.
Prayer is always answered, provided it is rightly said.
There are 2 types of prayers – egocentric prayer... It's called sakaam praathna, sakaam upaasana, sakaam bhakti. Egocentric prayer makes you very poor, petty. And you cannot go beyond that. 'O Lord, give me this. O Lord, give me this.' All the time you are begging. And it makes you a beggar. It never improves your life. Because you are all the time feeding your ego. It is not considered to be a great prayer. So, sometimes it is heard, and sometimes it is not. Because, it is just to feed your ego!
Otherwise, all the prayers are answered. The answer that you do not receive from any quarter, from anyone. Because life itself is a big question. No matter how much one explains, yet there is a question. Every individual has a question. And that individual wants that question to be answered :-) by someone higher, greater…so you call him God.
You pray to God, but that prayer should be God-centric prayer. Do not ask anything from God, because God already knows your needs. There is a difference between need, want wish and desire. Our days are laden with wants and nights with desires. Thus, we remain disturbed all the time and put blame on God and say, 'The way I suffer is because of God. It's he who makes me suffer.'
Let us understand that all the cause of suffering is because of our deeds, karma. Never forget this universal law, accepted by all great religions and bibles of the world. 'As you sow, so shall you reap.'
If you have understood this key then you try your best to perform your actions and learn the philosophy of non-attachment, which is called love. Love means non-attachment.
St. Bernard beautifully said, 'All the things of the world are to be enjoyed, but God alone should be loved.
Love does not mean attachment.
Attachment brings misery, pain. Non-attachment gives you freedom. That which is considered to be lust, we call it love! Actually, love means non-attachment. St. Bernard beautifully said, 'All the things of the world are to be enjoyed, but God alone should be loved. Our scriptures also said.
How to conduct that prayer?
Lead me from the unreal to the real. Lead me from darkness to light. Lead me from mortality to immortality. Asato ma satgamay. Tamaso ma jyotirgamay. Mrutur ma amrutam gamay.
These are the paths. Three desires have been expressed in this prayer. Lead me from the untruth to the truth. Untruth means apparent reality – which seems to be real, but is not absolute real. Lead me from this to the ultimate truth. Lead me from darkness to light. Dispel all the ignorance that's created by our karma our mind, our action, our speech.
Lead me from mortality to immortality. So far, we are aware of the mortal aspect of life. A human being dies, and then you don't know anything about it. He is born, he grows, becomes youth, grows to old age and then he dies.
No, there is another aspect of life that is called immortality.
'Lead me from mortality to immortality, my Lord.'
There are three prayers. One prayer is totally for spiritualism – leading from mortality to immortality. This physical awareness, this worldly awareness… From this awareness, Lord, lift us to the highest awareness that is called spiritual awareness.
God exists in me. I am a living shrine of God. He walks with me. he witnesses all my actions. He purifies my soul which is a part of the ultimate truth.
Second: 'darkness to light.' Darkness is symbolic. Darkness means ignorance. We suffer on account of ignorance. Buddha said, 'It's avidya, ignorance, the mother of all problems.' Let us be free from ignorance.
Who created this ignorance? It's not created by God. It's created by our own actions, by own thinking, by own understanding.
So when you pray, become aware of the truth that is already within. Which God are you praying to, that's important to understand. Scriptures say, though God exists everywhere…it is omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent, but that's only the knowledge part. That's not going to enlighten you!
That which enlightens you when you come to know that: God dwells in me.
Then your life and concept of life is totally changed. You're transformed. Then you don't feel your independent existence. You feel, 'God exists in me. I am a living shrine of God. He walks with me. He witnesses all my actions. He purifies my soul which is a part of the ultimate truth.'
This way constant consciousness, awareness, leads to wisdom, gives you freedom from all the miseries and bondages.
Asato ma sadgamay. As a human being my mind dissipates my actions. Dissipates. Is dissipated all the time. 'O Lord of life, O Lord who is witnessing my actions, I am being aware of you. You are within me. Lead me on the right path. That which is beneficial for me, that which does not hurt others, that which does not injure others. Lord lead me to the right path.'
~ Swami Rama
About Swami Rama
Swami Rama was born in northern India, raised by his spiritual master and trained in the tradition of the cave monasteries of the Himalayas. He taught the Upanishads and Buddhist scriptures in his youth and also studied Tibetan mysticism. In the years 1949 to 1952 he held the prestigious position of Shankaracharya of Karvirpitham. He studied western psychology and philosophy in universities in Europe and England. In the late 60s he came to the United States.
Most importantly, Swami Rama was a fully enlightened master and the representative of an ancient lineage of yogis who confer in their high initiations direct experience into the mysteries of consciousness: they are the founders and custodians of the science of meditation. Swami Rama left his body in November 1996.