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Love and Light

Divine Light

God is Light. In Christianity, in Islam, in Hinduism, in Buddhism and in many other Religions, God is spoken of as Light and all of them have prescribed meditation on Light. Our dear Lord Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba has explained that the Divine Light embodied as Brahman reveals and shines in all of us. He constantly reminds us that we are ourselves that Infinite Divine Light: Not the ‘water-bubble’ body, not the ‘mad monkey’ mind, but the eternally pure and free Spirit, the Divine Light.

What keeps us from experiencing this Divine Light is only our restless mind that hankers after sense objects ceaselessly. When the mind has become pure, when spiritual virtues and human values have grown with in us, when we have attained to a high degree of discrimination (Viveka) and dispassion (Vairagya), then we are told, we gain this knowledge and experience of our true selves. Then, we are enlightened! Only then, we are liberated or free!

Thus Purity is the pre-requisite for this experience of Divinity, and Purity is achieved through Unity or harmony in thought, word and deed. The practice and development of human values- Sathya, Dharma, Shanti, Prema, Ahimsa- along the paths of Bhakti, Karma and Jnana will lead each one of us nearer and nearer to the experience of this Divine Light.

In the UK Sai family, it is not a mere coincidence that we are celebrating the year as the Year of Illumination. This is the year too when the Olympic Torch representing the hopes and aspirations of human spirit around the world came to various parts of UK; when we are having the National Sai Retreat ‘Divine Light’; and the National Pilgrimage ‘Sai Jyothi’. Ramadan and Krishna Janmashtami, which also signify Divine Light, are being celebrated in the same month as our Retreat.

Let us all take advantage of this ‘Cosmic Coincidence’ as one large Sai family residing in various Centres and Regions of UK, and resolve to discover this Light with in us. When we have found that Light, and that Light is thrown upon those around us, then we will experience everything as light divine. And when one has seen everything as living light, Divine Light- that indeed is True Illumination.

Dr. Veeru Mudigonda
National Spiritual Coordinator

Divine “Light” and Divine “Feet”
(Jyothish charana-abhidhaanaath)
Sutra Vahini, Aphorism 10; Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba

The word light (jyothi) in the Upanishads does not connote the physical light of the material world. When material limits or qualifications like feet (charana) are specified, how can the immanent, all-pervasive entity be indicated? Such a limited or qualified phenomenon cannot become the object of adoration and meditation. When the word light is understood to mean the light having certain natural characteristics, it cannot signify Brahman, the Universal Absolute.

Divine light shines everywhere

The hymn in praise of the cosmic Person (Purusha Suktha) declares: The entire cosmos, with all its component elements, is but one quarter of His glory. Paadosya vishwa bhuthaani.
Therefore, the cosmic Person is beyond bounds, measures, or degrees. The divine light (jyothi) illumines Heaven and beyond and reveals even Brahman. That which makes known by its splendour the era preceding the origin of living beings and the regions beyond even the farthest and the highest, “That” is indicated by the word Jyothi. It shines in that supremest among supreme regions.

Note also that the same divine light (jyothi) shines everywhere, at all times, and in all beings. It comprises existence (asthi or sat), illumination-knowledge (bhathi or chit), and joy-bliss (priya or ananda). All things seen in the universe have the unseen as their base. All things that move have the unmoving as their base. So, too, for every living being, why, for the very cosmos itself, the invisible Brahman, the Supra-Truth, is the basis. It is this Parabrah-man, the Omni-Self, that causes the cosmos to shine. “Divine light (jyothi)” is appropriate only for this light and not the limited, inferior, physical light. Divine light has neither beginning nor end. It is the supreme Light (Param-jyothi), the light without a second (Adwaitha jyothi), the eternal, unbroken Light (Akhanda-jyothi). In other words, it is the supreme Brahman Itself, for all this is revealed only in and through It.

Unlimited divine light versus worldly light

The divine light referred to above cannot be interpreted otherwise. The Upanishads do speak of Brahman as having “feet”, but that does not restrict or reduce Its vastness in any way. “Divine light (jyothi)”, therefore, conveys “Brahman” as its meaning. When Brahman is imagined as having four “feet”, or quarters, all that is projected from Brahman comprises but one quarter. The Upanishads assert that the other three are “undying, undiminishable, changeless (a-mritham)” in “heaven (divi)”. A point to be remembered is that such immortal (amritha)
light cannot be equated with the common light we deal with. The Upanishadic light (jyothi) is said to “illumine (deepyathi)”. How can this process be limited and tied down to the effect of ordinary worldly light? Divine light is embodied in Brahman; it operates in and through Brahman only. Brahman is immanent in all, so divine light reveals and shines in all.

Divine light is total illumination

The base, the root, the cover of the ever-vibrating, ever-moving cosmos is Brahman, the stable, the fixed, the im-movable, the ever-steady divine light. When Brahman also starts to vibrate, change, and move, total mergence, submergence (pralaya), happens. For example, when the train moves, if the rails on which it moves also move along, what about the fate of the passengers? When we walk, the road is stationary, so we are able to proceed safely along. The light that shines individually is called the flame in the lamp; the light that illumines and reveals all is called divine light (jyothi). Divine light brings to light the fire that pervades the regions, that warms the body and sides in the stomach, the gleam in the eye. The moon is lit by the sun and thereby made bright. All these activities are prompted and promoted by Brahman, which is divine light itself. Divine light is the principle, the phenomenon of illumination in all its aspects.