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SRI SATHYA SAI EDUCARE – FIVE ELEMENTS

Develop the strong faith that the body has been gifted to uphold Human Values.
Moral Values should be the undercurrent in each and every action of Man.
– Bhagavan Sri SathyaSai Baba DD 22nd Nov 1998

Educare is the Veda of the 21st century.


The word ‘Educare’ means to bring out that which is within. Human values, namely, Sathya, Dharma, Shanti, Prema and Ahimsa (Truth, Righteousness, Peace, Love and Non-violence) are hidden in every
human being. ‘Educare’ means to bring out human values. ‘To bring out’ means to translate them into action.

The whole cosmos is made up of five elements. Sound, touch, form, taste and smell represent their attributes. All these have emerged from GOD (Sat-Chit-Ananda), the Primal source. Educare is the inter relationship between the Five elements, five attributes, five Sense organs and the five Human values.

Five Elements – Introduction

5 Elements

All of us notice a rainbow in the sky after rains. It has got seven colours – violet, indigo, blue, green, yellow, orange and red. However, all of them have come out of white rays of light only. We may not get as much joy from the white rays of light as from the seven colours of rainbow, but the existence of the rainbow is not possible without the white light. Similarly, we get joy on seeing this whole creation made, but we tend to lose sight of the source of this creation who is GOD.

5 Elements
The tiny droplets of rain-water act as prisms which divide the white rays of sun into seven rainbow colours;
similarly, our mind acts as a prism which enables us to enjoy the diversity in the cosmos coming out of the
Divine light of God, and created by the above five elements.

There is perfect harmony amongst these five elements of creation normally. Our body is also made outof these very elements. Ifwe can maintain balance in these elements in our body, we shall be healthy; and the balance of elements in the creation is also not disturbed.

Story

A big bottle half full of peanuts was lying on the table. A little boy saw the same and with greedy eyes came near it. He put his hand inside and filled his hand with as many peanuts as he could, and tried to take it out. Unfortunately for him, the mouth of the bottle was very narrow and his hand got stuck with the fist full of peanuts. He started crying. His father, who was sitting nearby, asked him to drop the peanuts and take out only a few as per his need in his little hand.The boy tried the same and was happy to take out his hand with a few peanuts.

Song

God created the five elements,
Space, air, fire, water and earth,
We are made of the same elements.
As is mother nature,
And so is every creature

Quiz

The elements are written below. For each of them, 4 options are given. Pick up the word which is nearest to it-
5 Elements
Akash : Universe, Space, Sky, Cloud.
Vayu : Air, Wind, Breeze, Cyclone
Agni : Smoke, Volcano, Fire, Lava.
Jal : Rain, Water, Pond, Tank.
Prithivi: Earth, Rock, Sand, Cement.

Prayer

‘Creator of Life and Light,
We thank you this day for the beauty of the world,
For hills to climb, and deep water to swim in,
For the goodly smell of rain on dry ground,
For music that lifts our hearts in one breath to heaven,
And for the hand grasp of a friend’

Silent Sitting

Closeeyes and ‘Visualise’ the joys of nature. Let there be soft music played in the background.

 

SPACE-1

Introduction

In the beginning of creation, GOD uttered the first word ‘OM’, something was required to contain it and the space element came into existence. It has unrestrained capacity to pervade. It exists everywhere. It can accommodate everything. Our ancestors worshipped space as God with the name ‘Sabdabrahman’ – Primordial sound.

Attributes

This element has the attribute of sound. Music and other audible sounds are the outpouring of the higher or cosmic sound ‘OM’ which is the source of all matter and energy. As space has the attributes of expansiveness, we should make our heart broad and accommodating, full of universal love for the whole creation.

Song

As space accommodates everything
Let my heart encompass every being.

Story

There was a great man named Kagawa in Japan. He was known as “Mahatma Gandhi of Japan”. He lived a simple life in a small town and everybody loved him.In that town, there lived a notorious man. He misbehaved with everybody. Nobody liked him. When everybody praised Kagawa, he started hating Kagawa
and wanted to harm him. So he went to his house in the night. Kagawa got up and saw the man with red eyes ready to kill him. But, he remained calm. He started to pray with folded hands to God, ‘Lord, give him good sense. I pray to you for his welfare’.The man was astonished to see the man whom he had come to kill, praying for his welfare. Kagawa was smiling with love and praying.The man threw his weapon and started weeping after falling at Kagawa’s feet.Kagawa asked him to get up, embraced him, wiped his tears and said, ‘Man, don’t worry. To err ishuman,to forgive is divine’. The man was completely changed with Kagawa’s prayer and affection. He became a good man.

Silent Sitting

Let children sit silently, close their eyes and imagine as under;
“I am walking in a garden. It is very beautiful. The birds are singing and are very happy. A cool breeze is blowing. I am looking at the blue sky. How much space is there? I am expanding and becoming bigger and bigger like the sky. The sky is calling all the living beings to float high and enjoy. The sun is shining with its rays of light and love. Let me spread both of my hands to all the people, animals, birds, planets, the fish, the rocks, to come to me and share my love. I am feeling happy and joyful. I express my thanks to all around me”.

Activity

In the grid identify the five elements –

5 Elements
Prayer

LokaSamasthaSukhinoBhavantu

SPACE-2

Guru: ‘My dear Children! Today we will talk about the five elements. The five elements in nature are Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Space. These elements have been created by God”. (Guru shows the sample of three elements to the children [Earth (alump of clay). Water (a glass filled with clear water). Fire (a candle is lighted, allow it to burn)]

Guru

“Children! I have shown you three elements out of the five elements. But I cannot show you the other two elements;you cannot see them with these eyes. But don’t get disheartened. I will let you know about these two elements also.Let us talk about air. We cannot live without taking in pure air through our breath inside our body (inhalation) and leaving out air alongwith bodily impurity through exhalation” (Guru demonstrates the process of inhalation and exhalation and asks children to practice).”Though you are unable to see the air
passing through during exhalation, you know its presence by the sensation of its touch. If you go outside the class room, you can feel the touch of air on the skin of your face and hands etc.” “Now we will try to know the element Space (Akasha). Akasha is the subtlest of all the elements and is the first element created by God.Sound is the only attribute of this Akash. The sound that first emerged during its creation is ‘OM’. This ‘OM’ is called the voice of God. From ‘OM’ other sounds were created.From the element ‘Space’, the other elements such as Air, Fire, Water and Earth were created in progression. “Suppose I utter the word ‘Rama’ loudly (Guru utters the word and takes a pause). Do you still hear the word uttered by me? ‘No’ where did this sound of Rama go? “It has spread in the space. Since space is present all over, the sound was absorbed in the space”. Whenever we devotedly chant’OM’ the sound of God, God becomes pleased and grants us good physical, mental and spiritual health.

Prayer

OmkaramBinduSamyuktham
NityamDhyanthiYoginah
KamadamMokshadamchaiva
OmkarayaNamoNamah

God’s name uttered by a true devotee, ever vibrates in ‘Space’

Story

“Now, I will tell you a story to know the secret of the element space”.

Story of JanaBai

Janabai, a simple and kind-hearted woman was a devotee of Lord Panduranga. She always devotedly chanted “Ranga! Ranga! Panduranga!even while engaged in her household duty. One day Janabai complained to Saint Namadev that cowdung cakes prepared by her are stolen by somebody. Namadev asked Janabai, “How do you identify the cowdung cakes prepared by you?” She replied “I always recite Lord’s Name. The cowdungcakes prepared by me bears the name I chant”. She ran up to her home and brought a cowdung prepared by her. She placed the cowdung cake close to the ear of Namadev. The dung cake was chanting the name of the Lord “Ranga, Ranga, Panduranga!”.Namadev heard these names coming out continuously from the cake. Namadev still wondered whether it was real; he had a doubt. Janabai was asked to prepare another dung cake. She brought some dung and made it into a cake while chanting “Ranga, Ranga, Panduranga!”.Namadev placed the cake close to his ear. Once again he heard the words of the Lord issuing from the cake. He realised that the power of Lord’s name was beyond all reckoning. Man’s thoughts and words remain ever in the omnipresent space, outlasting human existence”.

Song

My dear children! Let us now sing a song on ‘Space’ (Guru writes the song clearly on the blackboard and sings the song as children follow)
Om OmOm
Supports the element space
Om OmOm
Let us chant space. (1)

Space, Space, Space
Absorbs thoughts and sounds
Space, Space, Space
All the elements it binds. (2)

Think Good, Hear Good, Speak Good
To keep the Space pure
Grace of God shall shower
There shall be no fear. (3)

Space, Space, Space
Source of all light
Space, Space, Space
Shall keep us all in delight. (4)

Space, Space, Space
It is the divine gift
Keep it ever pure
Make your life bright. (5)

Activity

(Nature art) Draw and colour –
(a) Sky, Clouds, Rainbow, Bird, etc.
(b) Dark Sky, Stars, Moon

Silent Sitting

Close your eyes and meditate on the picture. Absorb the joy from nature. “A thing of beauty is a joy forever”.

AIR-1

Introduction

Air is a very important element created by God. Living creatures cannot live even for a little time without air. Our ancestors worshipped air as Vayudeva(Air – God).

Attributes

Air has two attributes of sound and touch. It has the quality of non-attachment. It moves everywhere, but does not get attached at any place. It is available without any favour or without any selfishness to everybody whether he is rich or poor, man or animal, flora or fauna, high or low. Its love is available to everyone. Sweet music is not possible without air.

Story

There was a noble king. He would always do good deeds for the public. Once he announced that if anybody is unable to sell his product in the market, he would buy it.Once a man brought the statue of Shanidev to sell in the market. But who would buy this statue to keep it in his house? So true to his word, the king bought the same and kept it in his place.In the night, Goddess Laxmi appeared before him and told him that she is leaving the place because
of the presence of Shani there. The King told her that she could do so because he had done so to keep his word and thus to uphold truth.After sometime, God Dharma Raj also appeared before him and told that he is leaving because
of the presence of Shani-deva. The King gave the same reply to him also and allowed him to leave if he so liked.Then cameSatya deva. He also wanted to go, but the King caught hold of him and said “I will not allow you to go.It is only because of you that I allowed both Laxmi and Dharma to go”. So Satya-deva had to stay. He did not go. Seeing this, Laxmi and Dharma also returned.

Value Song

Like air that’s cool and clear,
Let my smile be full of cheer,
And His Lotus feet will always be near.

I am your life force
Your vital breath
I blow through the scorching heat
Giving you cool breeze.

The fragrance of flowers and trees
And the music of birds
I blow through the swaying weeds
Creating new musical reeds.

Silent sitting

Take children to a garden having beautiful fragrant flowers. Let them sit there silently. With eyes closedlet them imagine: “I am sitting in a beautiful garden. Cool breeze is blowing. It has fragrance of flowers in it. My whole body is getting refreshed and cool with this breeze. I send rays of love and joy all around. Somebody is playing flute nearby. I am getting peace as this music falls on my ear. Birds are also singing on the tree. The whole atmosphere is giving me energy”.

AIR-2

“Dear children! We shall begin with a game. You have to close your nose and mouth with your hands. Who can sit for a maximum time?”(Analyse the feelings of the children)

“Now can you say without which Element we cannot stay even for amoment? Yes, that is air. If we are thirsty, but we don’t have water, we can live for a few days. If we are hungry, but we don’t have food, still we can live for a
few more days. But without air, we cannot imagine life”.

  • Who has created this air? Any scientist, Doctor or Engineer? No,it is God himself, who has created the AIR out of love for us.
  • Do we pay any tax for using air? We pay bills for electricity, for water in towns. But for air, nothing.
    It is absolutely free – gifted by God. So we must be thankful to God for His divine grace on all of us.”

Prayer

Come let us pray to VayuDeva :

“Namaste Vayo, TwamevaPratyakshamBrahmaasi,
Twaamevapratyaksham Brahma Vadishyami
RutamVadishyami, Satyam Vadishyami”
Om Shanthi: Shanthi:Shanthi: II(Vedic Prayer)

Oh Lord of the Air! Truth Supreme,
We bow to you Lord divine.
Bless us with great strength,
Intellect and the Balanced Breath.

Story

Do you know how Hanuman became powerful? I will tell you today about that. But before that can you tell me who the father of Hanuman is?
Yes, Vayu Deva.

Narrate the incident how after his birth Hanuman, feeling hungry, jumped to eat the rising sun thinking that it was a red ripe fruit. He swallowed the sun and so the universe was in darkness. The Devatas requested him to release the Sun from His mouth. This proposal was not accepted by little Hanuman. Indra was angry, attacked the newly born baby with His ‘Vajra’ by which the backbone of the baby Hanuman got fractured into pieces. Knowing all this Vayu Deva became angry and withdrew himself from the Universe and stopped flowing. Now what do you see? All creatures started burning. Temperature started rising everywhere.
Brahma, Vishnu, Maheshwarand Devas ran to Vayu Deva and prayed to save the creation. Vayu deva asked all to give their power to his son and to make him all powerful. With the blessings of all Divine Powers,the baby had great strength, intellect and intuition. Since then he is known as Hanuman.

Questions

  • What happened when Vayu Deva stopped blowing?
  • What would happen if there isno air?
  • Can fishes/water animals live? (No they also breath air dissolved in water)
  • Can trees live without air? (No, they also breath through their leaves)

Circle Game

There will be six circles named Earth, Water, Fire, Jungle, Birds and Vacuum. Six children will move around with music. Whenmusic stops, children have to stand in any of the circles. Depending upon the circle in which they are, following action is to be done by them.

Earth – A Dancing Man;
Water – Swimming fish;
Birds – Flying Bird;
Jungle – Swinging Tree;
Fire – Burning fire;
Vacuum – Dead body

The child in the vacuum circle will be out of the game.(Now ask a few questions to point out the attributes to AIR)

Can you see Air? No, it is formless.
Can you taste Air? No, it is tasteless.
Can you smell Air? No, it carries smell of any object `or Gas it comes across.
Do you hear the sound of Air? Yes, it creates sound based on the speed.
Can you touch Air? Yes, we feel the soothing touch of air.

How do you feel when you move morning and evening in the cool breeze? We feel fresh, energetic and happy.
Thus, air has the attributes of sound and touch.

Story

There was a little bird named Dolly. With her strong wings, Dolly planned for a journey to cover the entire world, to see new places and the beautiful nature. Dolly started early morning. Fresh air was blowing throughout. Happily and gladly she went on flying, singing songs and enjoying the
beautiful nature trees, flowers, fruits all around. On the way she ate fruits from trees, drank pure water from rivers, took a little rest on branches and again started her journey. She covered several miles.

At one moment, she suffered from a breathing problem. Feeling very week, she started coming down. Her eyes started burning. She found a canal full of dirty water. In pain, failing to find any other source, she washed her eyes in that dirty water. Then, she looked for a tree to take rest. After a long search, she found a small tree. She wanted to lie down for a moment. After taking some rest, she wondered why thishappened. Where am I? There were buildings around, notrees. She saw a large factory giving spreading heavy smoke in the surroundings. She was scared to see hundreds of vehicles moving on the road expelling smoke.

Little Dolly was ashamed of looking at the demonic nature of humans in destroying the purity of god-gifted air. She abandoned her plan to journey around the world. She turned back to her village with a heavy heart. She called her friends. They talked about the importance of plantation, control of exit of gases in the atmosphere, importance of pure air on the body and mind. They also collected packets of seeds of a variety of trees.

Then they all flew to the town. They dropped the seeds all over the town. They were happy that they had done their duty. After one year, Dolly once again came to see the town. She was very happy to see that the trees were swinging with cool breeze all around, no eyes burning, nobreath choking. She happily danced and sang –

“Fresh Air,Healthy Air, Pure Air, Divine Power”

Quiz

We can ask a few questions to know what they have understood –
Q. What happens if air is polluted? (Temperature increases)
Q. What is the cause of air pollution? (Gases from factory and vehicles, deforestation)
Q. How to control air pollution? (Plantation, control of gases exit to atmosphere)
Q. What is the importance of pure Air? (Givesstrength, makes us fresh)

Visualisation

‘Now be ready to go on a tour. Where will we go? Let’s go to a park full of green grass. Beautiful flowers are all around spreading fragrance. Air which is fresh and cool, touches our body.It makes us fresh. So let us go. Close your eyes. Sit straight. Feel that it is early morning’ Recite Three Omkars. (Silence for a while. Then Guru will speak slowly)

‘Dear children, stand up slowly. Be in the queue. Silently form a line. Look at the sun. How beautiful is the rising sun! Oh what cool air. It is touching our whole body. Ah! What peace. Please wait. The bus is coming. Let it go. Oh! dirty smoke. Close your nose. This gas is very bad for our health. OK, now cross the road.

‘Look at the beautiful park. Go inside the park in a line. What a pleasant breeze! Go and run around, inside the park (Pause for a while). Now you are feeling hot and are sweating. Nowtake rest under this tree. How do you feel? Now, you are enjoying the cool air once again. It is soaking all your sweat. Look at the trees. How they swing happily with the rhythm of the air. Oh! What a sweet fragrance! Air is bringing the sweet smell from the flowers to us.

Now it is time to go back. Thank the plants, flowers, sun. Give your special thanks to the air. Move slowly. Now we are at the doorstep of our classroom. Take off your shoes. Come inside slowly. Sit down at your place. Relax. (Pause for a while)

Now we will recite “Om Shanthi;Shanthi;Shanthi:”

FIRE-1

Introduction

Fire element represents light. Fire has been given the name of Fire-god or Agni deva. We worship fire, do ‘Homam’ We do Aarti to all gods with the flame of fire.

Attributes

Fire has the attributes of sound, touch and form.Fire itself burns, but gives light to others. It transmits energy also. Sun is also a sort of fire-ball. It gives energy and light. Light is a symbol of knowledge. As light dispels darkness, knowledge removes the darkness of ignorance. Fire burns the impurities in anything and makes the same pure e.g. gold. As such it is a symbol of purity also. When the light of knowledge shines, bad qualities like hatred,
jealousy, greed etc. go away and good qualities take their place. Flame of fire always goes up. Similarly, we should have always high and lofty ideals and thoughts.

Story

One day a saint, saw a boy with a string-instrument singing a dirty film song. The saint stopped and started crying in a loud voice “Oh God, you are great. Not even a leaf can move without your wish”. The boy become angry and hit the saint on the head with his instrument and the same got broken. The saint just smiled and went ahead.

On reaching his hut, the saint told the whole incident to his disciple and asked him to go to that young man and give him the price of the instrument and also some sweets. He also asked to tell him that getting angry is very bad for health, and that he was sorry that he became angry only because of him. When the young man received all these things and nice advice from the saint, there were tears of repentance in his eyes; he went to the saint and apologised for being annoyed with him.

Quotation

fire burns strong and bright, Let my thoughts always be upright.

Silent Sitting

Ask the children to sit straight and silent. Then ask them to think as under – “Imagine that there is a lighted lamp in front of you. With closed eyes bring the light to your forehead and then in your head. Imagine and say that wherever there is light, darkness cannot remain. All bad thoughts are out and all good thoughts are in. I will always have good thoughts.”

Activity

Prepare three sets of cards. These are given to three groups of children. They are told that the sets contain names
of (a) professionals, (b) Work they do, and (c) The source of heat or fire. They have to match the cards.

5 Elements

Questions to Discuss

  • Human body has fire within
    (A thermometer will show temperature. When dead, the body becomes cold)
  • Sun has fire
    (A lens can be used to concentrate rays on a dry paper)
  • Wood and stones have fire
    (Two wood sticks are rubbed, or stones rubbed against each other to produce fire)

FIRE-2

The Teacher will relate an incident of a picnic. Once, the students of a primary school went on a picnic with their teachers. They carried all materials for cooking their food, like rice, dal, vegetables and firewood. They held their camp near a hilly stream. After reaching the spot they began arranging all the materials for cooking their food. Unfortunately their cooking could not be started. Something was found missing. What was that? It was the matchbox. There was no other source of fire to burn the firewood.

Questions

  • Who created the sun?
  • Besides cooking in what other ways does fire help the people?
  • When do you need light?
  • How do you get the light in day time?
  • What else does the sun give to the world?

Song

Fire, Fire burning bright
In the midst of gloomy night
Light is life and darkness death
Gives us energy, light and mirth.

From womb to tomb, fire is friend
Fulfills all the needs till the end
In summer, we feel the scorching heat,
For winter it is a pleasant gift.

Lighter than water spreads everywhere
Purity is its basic nature.

Group Activity

Questions are given below for discussions. Teacher can divide the class into groups and give each group a question. They can list the answers. One pupil can make a presentation. Displays can be made for effectiveness.

  • What sources of light do we use?
  • What do we burn in fire? Why?
  • What things are purified in fire?

Silent Sitting

Children! The day dawns and you rise early from bed and do the morning prayers. Go out and salute the rising red round sun coming up in the eastern horizon. Visualise the sun as light dispelling the darkness of the night and spreading everywhere; you feel the soothing warmth of the morning sun. Then you take your bath and clean your clothing in warm water and let your wet dresses be dried up in sun and air. For the entire day the sun God has given light, heat and energy. Then mother serves you hot Tiffin cooked on fire. Then, the sweeper comes and collects the waste unused materials at one place, sets fire to it to make your surrounding clean and pure. The sun then rises over head. You enjoy your delicious lunch cooked by mother with the help of fire. Evening comes; you get light of the moon. All the lights of your house then must be on to help you do your activity. Your mother lights up the sacred lamp at your shrine room for prayer. Incense fire is also lit up to provide fragrance.

Prayer

“Asato ma Sadgamaya
Tamaso ma Jyotirgamaya
MruthyormaAmrutamgamaya.
OmShanthi: Shanthi:Shanthi:”

WATER-1

Introduction

Water is just like nectar in the creation of God. Life is not possible without water. It is necessary for survival of human, animal and vegetable life. In Bharat, we call all the rivers as mothers – like MotherGanga, Mother Godavari, MotherKaveri etc. We worship them like goddesses. There is a daily Aarti of River Ganga. In this way we offer our gratitude of these rivers for giving us lifesaving water.Out of his selfishness, man is not caring to keep these rivers pure and clean. We throw all waste materials in them. Factories by the side of rivers throw the waste effluents in them making the water unfit for human consumption. Also, the balance in the nature is disturbed. In our daily use also, we waste much water and do not utilise the same as per our need. Nature also gives us punishment by floods somewhere and droughts at other places.

Attributes

Water has four attributes viz; sound, touch, form and taste. It has the property of constant flow, always on the move. We should learn from it – not to sit idle but always do some work, to help others and create harmony in nature. Water always flows from a higher level to lower level. The higher the level from which it falls, the greater is the power which it has. It can help in the production of electricity. Water does not hesitate to flow towards lower side. Similarly, we should not have any ego and should love the poor people. Water gives coolness when taken inside or used outside to take a bath. Flowing water also takes alongwith it the dirt and leaves the area neat and clean.

Quotation

There was an ill-tempered lady. She would get angry on every small pretext. When she would become calm, she repented, but she could not overcome her anger.

One day a Sadhu came to her house. The lady told him “Sir, I am very sad. I become angry very easily.
Please tell me some way out to overcome this habit”.

The Sadhu told her “Dear lady, don’t worry. I have got a very good medicine to overcome anger; I shall come tomorrow alongwith the medicine”

Next day, the Sadhu came to her with bottle full of some liquid. Giving the same to her, he said “Whenever you become angry,
just take the bottle to your mouth and sip the liquid till your anger subsides. I shall come after seven days”.

The lady started taking the medicine. Whenevershe became angry, she would start sipping from the bottle.

After seven days the Sadhu came as promised to know the outcome. The lady fell at his feet saying “Sir, you have saved me.
You gave me such a medicine that I don’t know where my anger has gone. Kindly tell me about the medicine”

The Sadhu told “Sister, the bottle contains nothing but pure water. Water gives coolness to the mind and heart. So your anger has gone”.

As water quenches thirst and earth tolerates the worse, let me be righteous and just.

Silent Sitting

Take children on the banks of a river and let them sit silently and be looking towards the vast expanse of water. Think as under-

  • How clean is the flowing water
  • How beautiful is the flowing water
  • The taste of pure, clean and cold water
  • The joy of all around atmosphere with greenery created by this water and the cool breeze flowing over this cool water.
  • My mind is filled with peace and love. Love is flowing towards all, sundry without any thought of mine and thine, high and low.

Activity

  • Which is the fruit that has water in its name?
  • Find out what water is called in three different languages.
  • Water exists in three states. Ice is in the ___________ state and vapour is in _________ state.
  • How do camels travel long distances for many days without drinking water?
  • Excess loss of water in the body may cause _______________ .

WATER-2

Story

There was a boy named Ramesh. He mostly liked to spend his leisure hours in the garden. One day, he brought some flower plants from the market and planted them in the garden. He looked after them and cared for them. After about a week, his parents wanted to visit some places in the south, Ramesh had to go with them. They returned after 15 days. Ramesh found that all his plants had died.
Q. Tell me what made the plants die?
Q. What should have Ramesh done?
Q. What problems will you face without water?

Group Activity

The students will be divided into small groups of 5-8 to discuss and draw a list of uses of water. They will be further told to draw rough sketches depicting uses of water with a little caption on each sketch. Each group will present its work for the whole class and finally the teacher will sum up and write them on the board. The sketches will then be displayed on the walls for every student to observe and note.

Group Singing

Water, Water, Water
God is your creator

I cannot live without your favour
You are my life sustainer-Water

You make everybody’s life a pleasure
I promise to keep you ever pure.
Water, Water, Water

Story

Bhageeratha was the son of KingDilip. When Bhageeratha became King, he took the vow that he would bring the holy water of the Ganges from heaven on the earth and land below. He did penance (Tapa) for a long period to please Lord Brahma and Lord Shiva.

It was his strong determination and devotion that pleased them. Lord Shiva absorbed the form of Ganga in his matted hair.And then the sacred Ganga flowed down. Wherever the pure and sacred waters of Ganga flowed, there was prosperity, happiness and love. The land became fertile; Civilisations grew along the banks of the river. Mother Ganga is symbol of life, of purity and divinity.

Silent Sitting

“I got up from bed early in the morning, prayed to Lord and left my bed. I washed my face with water. Then I offered my pranams at the feet of my elders. After that I brushed my teeth completed other works ‘including bath’ with the help of water. I washed my clothes with water. My mother cleansed the utensils and the veranda with water. My parents also completed their daily work, like me, with the help of water. My mother cooked food, mainly with the help of water. After returning from school, I watered the plants and then washed my hands and legs with water. I take my Tiffin with water.Oh Water, I cannot exist in this world without you. You are really great. I am most grateful to God who has created you for us. I shall never waste you. I promise to keep you ever pure’.

Om Shanthi:Shanthi:Shanthi:

EARTH-1

Introduction

All the five elements are the divine entities of God. Hence our ancestors always worshipped them as God.We worship earth as Bhu-devi or Dhartimata. We should try to keep this earth element always purified by controlling our requirements and by engaging ourselves in good deeds.

Attributes

Earth has five attributes viz; sound, touch, form, taste and smell. Earth gives us energy and food. Our life flourishes only because of earth. It teaches us forbearance and broad mindedness. All the light and heavy vehicles move over it.We dig and plough over it and give it all the troubles and injuries, but it bears all this very peacefully; in return it gives us food and other necessities of life like wood, coal, minerals, etc.

Story

A French boy loved birds, especially the Lau bird, which had melodious voice. French people like to eat the meat of this bird.

One day, this boy heard the voice of Lau bird. He saw around and found the bird in a cage by a man who wanted to sell the bird. The boy knew that whosoever bought the bird would kill and eat its meat. Lau looked at the boy as if it was asking for help.

The boy asked the man for the price. He searched his pocket and found that there was not enough money. He told the man, “Dear old man, take whatever money I have but give me this bird”.

It was quite hot. He ran to his house but found that his mother was not there. He feared that somebody may buy the bird and eat it. He then ran to his teacher for the balance money. The teacher immediately gave him the balance money. The boy ran back when he saw that a woman was bargaining for the bird.

The boy paid the price and was happy that he could save the bird so dear to him. He at once looked at the bird that was also looking anxiously at him. He patted Lau. Lau also thanked him with his loving voice. The boy took the cage to a lonely place and opened the same. With thankful and loving lookthe bird flew into the space above. Who can imagine the pleasure which the boygot?

Quatations

We should have the mental attitude as per the Atharva Veda saying as under – (Earth is my mother; I am the son of Earth) In order to emphasise, the same thing is uttered twice. If we utter this and have this attitude we shall definitely try to conserve Mother earth and keep it neat and clean.

Silent Sitting

Take the children to the countryside and let them sit silently along the field. Let them think and enjoy as under :

  • Trees and hedges are all around, shining sun above and gentle breeze blowing,
  • Field is being ploughed by tractor, water flowing from a tube-well.
  • On the other side, we see corn in the field, from corn comes flour which is kneaded into bread and other foods.
  • Everything we need to live is around us. We can take as per our need. There is no need to hoard.
  • This is just like a golden field of love for everybody. Birds and animals are enjoying in the free atmosphere.

EARTH-2

Introduction

Earth is our mother. She bears the burden of huge mountains, deep seas and wide spread forests rivers, lakes. It takes all the pains in allowing its surface ravaged for agriculture, mining and industries. It gives us food, shelter, so many things, good environment and buildings for our habitation.

Story

There was a farmer living in a village. His young grandson was going to the fields with him every day. He was in a habit of asking about whatever he saw outside. When his grandfather was sowing paddy in the field, he enquired about the same. Grandfather answered about the act of sowing seeds in the field. Again the grandson inquired “Why?” This time grandfather asked him to wait for 6 months and watch. After 6 months when the paddy bags were brought back home, the grandson again inquired where the bags came from. Now grandfather got the chance to explain, the result of sowing the seeds and that this is the outcome of the act of sowing before 6 months.The grandson thought for a few minutes and said “Our field is a good bank which gives the highest interest on the deposits even for a short period”.

Song

I am the earth, earth I am called
I am created to serve the whole world
I never expect anything in return
For my life is full of dedication (1)

I am created to tolerate all
I am trained to accommodate all
I am taught to facilitate all
Gladly and smilingly I embrace all (2)

Heavy and High mountains rest on me
Mighty and long rivers flow on me
Tall towers and mansions stand on me
Life giving crops are grown on me (3)

Silent Sitting

A globe is to be kept for the children. They may be asked to observe the globe minutely. After a keen observation for a minute or two, children will be asked to close their eyes and visualise the landscape, countries and continents their length and breath.

Questions

  • Where are the crops grown?
  • Out of what are the bricks made?
  • Where are the mines from which we get minerals?
  • Where can we dig well, to get water?
  • Where can we produce vegetables?

Story

A very rich man was living in his village. He had three sons. The rich man grew old and before his death he wanted to divide his properties among the sons. He had a lot of land property, cows and buffaloes and gold ornaments. The eldest son wanted to take all the gold ornaments and live in the town. The middle was very fond of cows and buffaloes. So he took all the cattle and the workers who looked after them. The youngest had no other choice but to accept the landed property. Days passed and the rich man died.

The sons lived as per their choice. Once there were floods in their district. There was no scope of saving the cattle. The son with the cattle lost some of the cows and buffaloes. Those were left behind did not get any food to eat. Some of them also died subsequently. The second son faced a great loss. Without getting any work and food,people from the village left for nearby towns. Some of them started stealing. Once there was a theft in the house of the elder son in that town. He also lost a good amount of ornaments.

After the floods, people in the village tried their best for the next crop and got good harvest and lived happily. The youngest son thanked the land for its gifts.

Group Activity

Students are divided in two groups. Tasks are given as below. One group gives a word clue. The second group should give its utility. Marks are given.

5 Elements
5 Elements
5 Elements
5 Elements

Further Reading

Gurus’ references: Five Elements exposition by Bhagavan Baba in
PrasnottaraVahini

PRASNOTTARA VAHINI: ANSWERS TO SPIRITUAL QUESTIONS

I. THE BODY AND THE INDRIYAS

Q. Why is this human body said to be composed of the five elements, the Panchabhuthas?

A. Since it is a product of the Five Elements.

Q. What exactly are the Five Elements?

A. Akasa, Vayu, Agni, Jala and Prithvi, which are usually referred to as ether, air, fire, water and earth.

Q. From where did these originate?

A. Each subsequent element originated from the previous one.

Q. Which is the cause of the first and therefore of all the five?

A. Brahmam, the unmodified, the fixed, the Basis.

Q. What is the relationship between these Five Elements and this human body?

A. FromBrahmam originated Yathna and Mahath (Effort and Cosmos); from these was born Akasa, from Akasa was born Vayu, Agni; from Agni, Jalam; and from Jalam, Prithvi. The human body is the result of the combination of all these five.

Q. In what form do these elements persist in the body?

A. Each element has again become five-fold and has gone into the composition of the body.

Q. The first – Akasa, what are the five which it has become?

A. The cogniser (Jnaatha), manas, buddhi, ahamkaram, panchakam.

Q. Speaking as “in the body” how are these indicated?

A. They are recognised as the “inner senses”.

Q. Now, what are the five forms of the next element Vayu?

A. Samaana, Vyaana, Udaana, Praana, and Apaana.

Q. And, in the body, what are they called?

A. ThePanchaPraanas, the five vital airs.

Q. And Agni? – The Fire element?

A. That element became the sensory organs: the ear, the skin, the eye, the tongue, the nose.

Q. And how are they demarcated?

A. AsJnanendriyas, the organs of knowledge.

Q Tell me, what are the Jalapanchakas, the five which the water-element became.

A. Sabda, Sparsa, Rupa, Rasa, Gandha (Sound, Touch, Form, Taste and Smell).

Q. Have they too any special name?

A. They are known as PanchaThanmaathraas – the Five Subtlenesses.

Q. The Earth-element remains out of the Five. How does it appear in the body?

A. The vocal organs, hands, legs, genitals and the excretory organs.

Q. And they are known as…?

A. As Karmendriyas – the organs of action.

Q. Instead of considering this human body, constituted in this manner by the elements as a single unit, the Vedanthins say there are many units in it! Is that true?

A. There are not “many”, but three. Some say, there are four!

Q. Oh! What are they? What are they called? The third and the fourth?

A. Sthuladeha (the gross body), Sukshmadeha (the subtle body) and Kaaranadeha (the causal body). Some aver that there is a fourth called, MahaKaaranadeha (the Super-Causal Body) also.

Q. What exactly is meant by Sthuladeha, the gross body?

A. It means the body constituted of the 25 elemental principles mentioned by me already.

Q. What then is the Sukshma body?

A. The 5 Jnanendriyas, the 5 Than-Maathras, the 5 Praanas, the Manas and the Buddhi – these 17 categories
combine to constitute the subtle body.

Q. Is this called Sukshmadeha only or has it any other appellation too?

A. Why should it not have? It has. It is known also as Thaijasa.

Q. And is it marked off as belonging to any state or Avastha?

A. Yes, it is.

Q. And what is the name of that?

A. The Dream State.

Q. Do you mean to say that the Gross Body has no state assigned to it?

A. Of course, it has.

Q. Tell me the name of that state.

A. That is the wakeful state, the Jaagrath.

Q. What is the Causal, the Kaaranadeha?

A. There, the Chiththam or Consciousness is in association with the Knower, the Knowing Principle, theJnaatha.

Q. What is it known as?

A. The Praajna.

Q. And the state?

A. The state is Sushupthi, Deep Sleep.

Q. Tell me also, what they mean by the Super-Causal Body, the fourth.

A. The Pure Consciousness unmixed with any Thathwa or elemental principle, the Witness Eternal, the Self Luminous. They refer to it as the MahaKaaranaDeha.

Q. Has it a name, like the rest?

A. It is known as Hiranyagarbha.

Q. And the state?

A. It is stateless, it is beyond all states of consciousness and so it is described as A-ksharaPurusha.

Q. Coming back to this Gross Body, what are the specific products attributable to the Five Elements that have united to form it?

A. Of the Earth, bone, skin, flesh, veins, hair.

Q. Of water, Jala?

A. Blood, urine, saliva, phlegm, brain.

Q. From Fire?

A. Hunger, thirst, sleep, sloth, comradeship.

Q. The element Vayu produces….?

A. Activity, movement, speed, shame, fear.

Q. The element Akasa in the body must be responsible similarly for some consequences.

A. Yes; for lust, anger, greed, pride and envy.

Q. Man has much travail, is it not? Do these consequences of his composition have anything to do with his travails?

A. You seem to have some doubts. The reason for all his agony is this group of gross qualities. The travails, too, are not many though they may appear so. They are only of four types. They are called Vasanas.

Q. What are the four Vasanas?

A. The body, the mind, wealth and sex; though there are others, all are ultimately based on these.

Q. Man in his pride struts about blindly; what is this egoism that prods him on? How many varieties of egoism are there?

A. There are four types: vanity of clan, vanity of wealth, vanity of youth and vanity of scholarship. Though there are other types too, they can be grouped under these.

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