CHAPTER XXI

SOME MAXIMS

[Maxims of ethical significance—Maxims of spiritual significance]

MAXIMS OF ETHICAL SIGNIFICANCE

1020.    The washerman keeps a large store of unwashed clothes in his house, but these are not his. As soon as the clothes are washed, his room becomes empty. Men having no original thoughts of their own are like the washerman. Be not a washerman in your thoughts.

1021.    Do yourself what you wish others to do.

1022.    Man becomes small by begging. Even the Lord Himself had to assume the form of a dwarf (Vamana) when he went to Bali for begging. By this example we learn that we demean ourselves, the moment we beg something from anybody.

1023.    Men are quick to praise and quick to blame ; so pay no heed to what others speak of you.

1024.    In living your life of^' peace and virtue, be indifferent alike to the praise and censure of mankind.

1025.    There are certain beings with whom one should be careful. First, rich men. They have money, men and great influence. They can injure you if they like. You

will have to deal with them very carefully; perhaps you will have to nod to all that they say. Secondly, the dog. When it attacks or barks, you must stop and pacify it by whistling. Thirdly, the bull When it attempts to gore you, it should be calmed by making some sounds. Fourthly, the drunkard. If you excite him, he will abuse you in all sorts of filthy language. But if you accost him endearingly, "Well, uncle, how are you getting on?'—he will be immensely pleased with you and he will come and smoke with you.

1026.    The man who has eaten radish has eructations with the smell of radish, and he who eats cucumber emits its smell in his belching; in the same way the mouth speaks out sometimes what the heart conceives within.

1027.    One develops various propensities according to the company one moves in; and again one seeks the company congenial to ones propensities.

1028.    There are some who have the nature of a serpent. You never know when they will bite you. You have to struggle hard to counteract their poison. Otherwise you will be so enraged as to feel the passion of revenge (against them).

1029.    Anger is a sign of Tamas. In anger man loses all discrimination. Hanuman set fire to Lanka, but he had not the sense then to apprehend that it might burn even the place where Sita was staying.

1030.    M Gurus can be had by hundreds and thousands, but of Chelas (disciples) there is not one' is an ancient saying. It means that many are the persons who can give good advice, but those who follow it are few.

1031.    Why do religions degenerate? Rain water is pure, but by the time it reaches earth it gets dirty owing to the medium it passes through. If the roofs and the pipes and the channels are all dirty, the water discharged through them must also be dirty. (So religion gets defiled by the medium through

which it manifests.)

1032.    Sin and mercury are hard to digest.

1033.    When visiting a sage or going to a temple, you should never go empty-handed. You have to take something, however trifling, in your hand as an offering.

1034. As thieves cannot enter a house if its inmates are wide awake, so if you are always on your guard, no evil thought will enter your mind to rob it of its goodness.

1035.    Maya is the attachment towards ones own relatives such as father, mother, brother, sister, wife, children and cousin. And the love that flows for all creatures equally is called Daya.

1036.    As long as I live, so long do I learn.

1037.    As long as you live, learn every day of the mysteries of Love and devotion. It will be always to your advantage.

1038.    Bow your head where others are bowing. Veneration never goes unrewarded.

1039.    Remain always strong and steadfast in your own faith, but eschew all bigotry and intolerance.

1040.    Bharata, Prahlada, Sukadeva, Vibhishana, Para-surama, Bali, and the Gopis of Brindavan—these persons disobeyed their superiors for the sake of God.

1041.    The best course for you is to renounce desire and to work unattached.

884 Sayings of Sri Ramalcrishna

MAXIMS OF SPIRITUAL SIGNIFICANCE

1042.    Heaven sometimes speaks through the mouths of lunatics, drunkards and children.

1043.    The devil never enters the house wherein songs in praise of Hari are always sung.

• 1044. Hallowed are they who live on the banks of the Ganges.

1045.    The Ganges-water is not to be regarded as water; nor the dust of Sri Brindavana as dust! nor the Mahaprasada of Sri Sri Jagannatha Deva as rice. These three are objective manifestations of the Supreme Being.

1046. If it pleases the Lord, He can even pass an elephant through the eye of a needle. He can do whatever He likes.

1047.    His steps falter not, who has taken refuge in Him.

1048.    Hari means He who steals (Harati) our hearts; and Haribal means Hari is our strength.

1049.    Unless the spirit in man gets awakened, he cannot know God.

1050.    Take refuge in God and forsake shame and fear. M If I were to dance in the name of God, what would people say ? —cast off all such ideas.

1051.    To someone the Master said: "Well, you have come to seek God now, after spending the greater

part of your life in the world. Had you entered the world after realising God, what peace and joy you would have found I"

1052.    If you have faith, you will attain to that for which you long.

1053.    First, the realisation of God, and then His creation. Valmiki was given the Mantra Rama to meditate upon, but was instructed to begin repeating it reversely Mara Mara —that is, Ma, or Isvara, and Ra, or Jagat,—first God and then the universe.

1054.    It is absurd to speak of harm from excessive absorption in God. The rays of a diamond illumine and soothe but never burn.

1055.    Try to know the Nitya through the Lila.

1056.    Betake yourself to Chit (Pure Consciousness) to realise the'Sat (Pure Existence).

1057.    The Eternal is to be reached by means of the non-eternal, the Real through the help of the unreal, and the noumenon through the help of the phenomenon.

1058.    His name is Intelligence (Chinmaya): His abode is Intelligence; and He, the Lord, is All-Intelligence.