May the New Year lead to the birth of a new individual and a new society
Jan 1, 2012
“May our lives and the lives of all beings be pervaded with goodness.
This is Amma’s prayer on this occasion. May the divine power to effect
positive change – both in ourselves and in the world – awaken in Amma’s
children. Amma’s prayer is that this New Year may lead to the birth of a
new individual and a new society.
“New Year is an auspicious moment wherein people try to correct all
the mistakes they made the previous year and try to overcome their
laziness. Interest in and enthusiasm for a new beginning is awaken. Many
make New Year’s resolutions. They try to start new habits. Many begin
keeping a diary. However, if we look at that diary six months later, we
will see that entries were made only for the first two weeks – maximum,
three months. This is what we see in many people’s lives. We don’t have
the ability to persist with good things. Sustained efforts are always
appreciated. For example, someone who has served the army or any other
organization for many years is always honored by that organization. But
we don’t persevere with our good actions and promises. Many start doing
yoga, but then, two or three days later, they quit. Many children start
practicing meditation with a lot of enthusiasm, but after a couple
months they stop.
“We should not delay in doing good actions. Our mind is constantly
changing. We need constant awareness and conscious effort to speak good
words, perform good actions, and to practice patience and compassion.
Such actions slowly turn into habits, which eventually become
spontaneous. Such habits bring success in life.
“Human beings have been given total freedom to write what they wish
upon the pages of life. God has given us the pen and paper, but He will
never tell us what to write. He will only show us how to write. He will
keep giving us hints. He has left what we write on the pages of life up
to us. We have the freedom. If we want, we can write letters of
goodness, love and beauty. We can also write letters of evil hatred, and
ugliness. God will keep giving us hints regarding the respective
results of goodness and evil. During the course of 2011, humanity has
received so many such hints.
“Natural disaster, social conflicts and economic crises are spoiling
the sleep of countless people throughout the world. Fear and anxiety are
hunting the minds of humanity with more and more intensity every day.
Because of humanity’s indiscriminate actions, Nature has lost its
harmony. The air, the water and earth have become full of poison. Nature
– which was once like a kamadhenu, the wish-fulfilling cow-has dried
up. The oil supply is rapidly decreasing. The food supply is dwindling.
Potable water and pure air are becoming scarce. Where did we go wrong?
The real mistake we committed lays in our inability to differentiate
between requirements and luxuries.
“If our current generation could reinstate such an awareness of
Dharma, then poverty and starvation would vanish like a bad dream.
“The New Year reminds us about the flow of time. Just as water drips,
drop by drop, out of a cracked vessel, so too is our lifespan
diminishing, minute by minute. As human beings, the most precious
treasure we have in this world is time. Anything lost can be found
again-except for time. Understanding this, we should live with
awareness, every moment. We should also remember that each tick of the
clock is really a footstep of Death, who is coming closer every moment.
“Whatever we see, hear or experience in the world is ephemeral. We
need to find the eternal substratum of everything, which is the Atma.
Then we will understand that no one in this world is different from us.
“Whether we laugh or cry, the days are going to pass by nonetheless.
So why didn’t we choose to laugh? Laughter is the music of the soul. We
should not laugh, seeing the faults in others. Let us see good in
everyone and share good thoughts, words and actions. Let us also try to
laugh, seeing our shortcomings and drawbacks.
“Many children tell Amma that the world is going to end in 2012. Amma
doesn’t feel this will happen. There may be some incidents in some
parts of the world. If we look at the earth, if we look at the water, if
we look at the air, if we look at Nature, if we look at human beings,
we can see that all in a state of agitation. This agitation is bound to
echo like thunder somewhere in the world in one form or another. Anyway,
death is an inevitable part of life. It can happen anytime, anywhere.
But just as we start writing a new sentence after making the period
mark, so too the end of one life just marks the beginning of another.
But we should not live in fear. Instead, we need to cultivate the
attitude of acceptance. Our attitude should be “Whatever happens I will
remain strong, courageous and happy.” Living in fear is like lying on
top of a bomb; we will never be able to sleep peacefully. But again,
Amma does not see anything very serious happening. Tragedies are always
taking place everywhere in the world. Even today, don’t we see accidents
while we are travelling? Don’t we hear about airplane crashes? Floods,
earthquakes, cyclones and tsunamis are regularly occurring. Wherever we
may be, let us be happy and develop faith in the True Self. Let us
perform good actions.
“Worms take birth, procreate and die. Animals do the same. If human
beings also live like this what then is the difference between us and
other beings? What message do we leave for the world? Through their
selfless actions, mahatmas live forever. Even if we are unable to
contribute to the extent they do, let us try at least a little but to
see what we can do for others. Even if just one tree is able to grow in a
desert, at least that much shade is created. If just one flower
blossoms, at least there is that much beauty. We may not be able to read
under the light of a zero-watt bulb, but when a number of such bulbs
shine together, we will be able to properly see. Similarly, through
unity we can achieve so much. The world is like a lake that cannot be
cleaned by just one person. However, if everyone does his part, we can
clean it together. Let us not be lazy. Let us try to do what we can. In
this way, we will definitely achieve what we need to.
“Like any other decision, happiness is also a decision-a firm
decision that “Whatever happens, I will be happy. I will be strong. I am
never alone. The Paramatman is always with me.” May my children have
the necessary mental strength, enthusiasm and self-confidence. May
divine grace be there for all of my children.” bounce bounce
Excerpts from Amma, Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi’s New Year’s Message 2012