-- What it is
PATH OF THE MASTERS: IT'S THREE FUNDAMENTALS
Success in spirituality depends on three factors:
(1) Satsang (spiritual congregation).
(2) Satguru ( living Master-soul ).
(3) Sat-Naam or Shabd (Word).
The term is comprised of two words: Sat, meaning God - the Unchangeable Permanence, and Sang, denoting union. It stands for contact with God. It can be had by the soul only when it shakes off all the trappings, physical, astral and causal. It also means an association with a living Master-soul who is an embodiment of the awakened life principle in Him. Sat, or life, in its fullness, is manifest in Him. He teaches nothing but spirituality, which is the source of all life and without which people lead merely a deluded and unsound existence on the plane of the senses. He tells us that besides the senses, mind and intellect, there is yet another power, greater than all these, for it quickens them with life, namely, the spirit or soul. It is, in fact, the only motor power in the body, and the pity of it is that we are altogether ignorant of it and have never even given a thought to it. It is the problem of problems, the most important and vital, and yet the most ignored. An association with a saint, a sage or a Master-soul will directly dye an aspirant in the colours of spirituality, in just the same way as proximity to fire gives warmth and nearness to ice, cold. The fact is that "God does not live on the highest heaven nor in the depths of the earth, for no space is sufficient to contain Him. But he truly resides in the bosom of a God-man." - Maulana Rumi
"My mind like a bird flew heavenwards,It may be said that such a person is as much a Polarised God as an electric switch is a polarised powerhouse, or a safe sea-beach is a suitable place where one can have a comfortable dip in waters of the sea. The true criterion of such a Satsang is that talks delivered there are always confined to spirit, its nature, its place and value in human life, its perennial Source and how to gain the same. The God-man thus shows how to escape from sufferings, decay and death, which are rampant in the world and to which all living creatures are subject.
The paradise was all deserted
as the Lord resides with His saints." -- Kabir
SATSANG IS OF TWO TYPES: OUTER AND INNEROuter Satsang: It is Satsang externally. It denotes the company of a Master-soul, attending His discourses and talks on spirituality, wherein He describes Atma Sadhan, or spiritual discipline, and in an inimitably loving way, peculiar to Him, exhorts the aspirants to devote some time for Atma Sidhi, or self-realisation, which is the first and last essential for God realisation. This part of His work may, for the sake of convenience, be termed theory of spiritual science.
"In a gathering like this, one gets a true clue to God,Inner Satsang: This is Satsang within. It consists in entering the laboratory of the human body, according to the instructions of the Master, withdrawing the sensory currents from the body by means of Simran and Dhayan (remembrance and concentration), and finally in linking the soul with the Dhun, the eternal Sound-current in the body through Bhajan, attuning the direct link between the individual soul and Oversoul. The soul thus attains by degrees Moksha, or liberation from sufferings, decay and death - the most deadly foes of all mortals. This part of his mission may be termed Surat Shabd Yoga, and it constitutes the practice in spiritual science.
For verily God shines therein through the God-man." - Majh M.4
"In a spiritual congregation, one hears of nothing but Naam,
And Naam alone is discussed therein, in all its varied aspects." - Sri Rag M.1
"No congregation can be termed a Satsang
Unless it is presided over by a Master-Soul." - Maru M.3
Sant or Satguru, is the living embodiment of God, for Life, Light and Love - the three attributes of Godhood - are fully present in him. He is charged through and through with Sat, or true Life, true Light and true Love. He is a fountainhead of Godhood and Love, and is competent to lead all the aspirants God-ward. He is a true guide on the grand road of spirituality. He is a God-man. The contact with God can be established only through His grace, for no one else can do this. The scriptures may tell us much about spirituality, for they constitute a wonderful storehouse of recorded spiritual experiences of ancient sages and seers, but they cannot give us a living touch and an actual experience of spirituality, which may be caught like an infection from the love-laden eyes of a person imbued with spirituality. Just as a lighted candle can light the unlighted candles, so also spiritual life-impulse can be transmitted by a spiritually living person.
"He alone lives who is in touch with God within,A God-man is truly the mouthpiece of God. God speaks through saints and seers, and reveals Himself through His prophets. The nearness of a living Master is the greatest blessing that one can have. A loving gaze, a kind word from Him, are enough to unlock a thrill of Divine happiness in any human soul. He may at any moment open the floodgates of spirituality and overwhelm a shriveled soul with the water of life. He is the bread of life and the water of life, and whosoever partakes of it, enjoys everlasting life and ever alter walks in the Light of God.
O Nanak! all the rest are really dead." - Majh War M.1
"Whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst;But much depends on the simplicity and sincerity of the seeker, his loving devotion and faith and, above all, his receptivity, for he who comes brimful already cannot possibly take in anything else.
but the water I shall give him shall be in him a well of water
springing up into ever lasting life." -John 3-14
"I am the Light of the world, and he that followeth Me
shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the Light of Life" -John 8-12
This is the original name of God-in-Action, the great and grand motor power behind the entire creation. Saint John speaks of it:
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by Him, and without Him was not anything made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of man. And the light shineth in darkness and the darkness comprehendeth it not."The Muslims call it Kalma, and declare that the 14 Tabaks or divisions (into which they consider the universe as divided) were created by it. The Hindus term it Naad, and ascribe to it the manifestation of 14 Bhavans, or regions. The Sikh scriptures call it Shabd or Bani, the Upanishads speak of it as Udgit, and the Vedas give it the name of Sruti or Akash Bani. The saints refer to it as Naam or Shabd, and there is no place where the vibrations thereof are not felt. This Naam or Sat-Naam is, then, the controlling power of the universe. It is the great cementing force whereby various elements, so very divergent in nature, are held together in the wonderful mosaic of the many-coloured dome of the universe. It is the string of life running through the entire creation, and, thus, the connecting link between the Creator and His creation. Kabir Sahib says:
"Ram Naam is the only Reality, and anything besides is subject to decay and dissolution. Always meditate and concentrate on this Reality, for death knows no calendar and may at home or abroad pounce any moment upon thee with its murderous claws."This is the 'Voice of the Silence,' as the Theosophists describe it, for it can be heard only in the silence of the soul. The elan vital, or the vital currents of life, can be felt in the inner depths of the mind. It is something subjective and can be experienced and felt only within, through the kindness of some Master-soul.
"He who alone knows of Naam as I would like him to do,
I take hold of him and support him through.
The natural inner music is continuously flowing of itself,
But only a rare soul knows of this communion;
The all-pervading spirit surges through every pore of the body.
The true Simran consists in perpetual attuning of the soul with the inner music,
without any outer aid (of lips, tongue, throat or the heart).
He who contacts this hidden crest-jewel, is our true friend." -- Kabir
"The all-pervading spirit of God saves one from births and deaths,
A communion with the Word ferries one across the sea of life," -- Gond M.5