The Five D’s – An Inward Journey for transformation within
Transformation is essentially the process whereby we begin to perceive and interact with the external world though ‘Constant Integrated Awareness.’ We suffuse the power of Love into our thoughts arising in the mind so that what we see, hear or do is ‘good’.
For example, we all are at present programmed by the environment, our past experiences of the physical world, TV, Media, etc. This negativity which has filled our mind at present has to be substituted by positivity. Such a re-programming is difficult to invoke; the mind operates to reinforce what is already in the sub-conscious; it is programmed to reject that which is contrary to its experience. It tends to deny those inputs, which could change the current behaviour patterns.
Yet, reprogramming is necessary for the transformation we wish to achieve. How do we take the U-turn? Where do we begin the journey back to the source? How do we initiate the process of reversal? The process of transformation is achieved by a subtle and complex combination of the five D’s – Devotion, Discrimination, Determination, Discipline and Duty.
When we consciously begin the inward journey, we immediately become aware of the element Air through the process of inhaling and exhaling. We also realise the importance of monitoring the rhythm, rate and depth of breathing. This requires training – to discipline ourselves in regulating rhythmic and deep breathing. Devotional Group Singing and saying Prayers are two of the transformation techniques which help us in this process. The practice of So Hum mantra is another powerful technique that can bring us closer to our goal.
Every moment we are engaged in breathing air. We are sustained by oxygen in the air. Man inhales and exhales air 21,600 times a day in 24 hours. While inhaling, the sound So is produced; in exhaling, the sound Hum is produced. Together, they make up the term So-Hum, meaning ‘He is I’, proclaiming the inherent divinity of man.’
– Sri Sathya Sai
The first step is to become aware of the necessity for change. The crucial requisite is to have full faith in the act of change. It is important that we re-discover our original connection with Divinity. When it is firmly imprinted on the mind that we are a reflection of the Divinity, we can then trace back to the source. Thus, we take a quantum jump, disassociating from the vicious circle of negativity, restricted to the body-mind entity; with devotion we raise our level of action to the super-conscious, the seat of Truth.
It is this very Faith which brought us to our Lord in the first instance. In His infinite Grace, Bhagawan Baba has given us the way out. We have to consciously take the first step, and Baba promises that the next ten steps will follow as a matter of consequence. The process of transformation follows the sequence of cause and effect. Whatever we sow, will grow in abundance in due course of time. What we plant, will grow; what we grow, we deserve. Therefore, we should plant good thoughts in the fertile garden of the mind. Good reading, good company and good environment are very necessary to proceed along these lines.
If you put pebbles of good thoughts into people’s mind, the ripples reach all the sense organs and translate as good words, good visions, good actions, and good hearing.’
– Sri Sathya Sai (21st May 2000)
It is Faith, which motivates us to act, to achieve purity of mind. With positive inputs via the senses, the subconscious will gradually be filled with positive impressions. This process is like taking a tumbler, which is full with dirty water, and place it under a tap giving clean water. Eventually, the dirty water will be displaced with clean water. Then, good behaviour no longer requires an effort on our part; it becomes our Swabhava.
Thus, discrimination is employed in choosing the appropriate inputs through our senses. In this process, we have to put a ceiling on our desires.
‘Among the five senses of perception, the eyes are endowed with immense power. Man’s life span is reduced by his unsacred vision. Along with control over vision, one needs to have control over one’s tongue. A man becomes a slave to taste he consumes. He makes his tongue utter unsacred words and hurts others’ feelings by using harsh words’.
– Sri Sathya Sai (5th July 2001)
Without Will Power no change is possible in our life. The activation of Will Power comes about when the level of awareness for the need to change reaches a sufficiently high threshold. This determination has to be built up to control the vagaries of the mind through steady action. One has to practice by meaningful action; self-discipline is therefore necessary to ‘See Good, Be Good, Do Good.’ Discipline is required to train and develop the mind by exercise in self-control. We need to convert the single acts of fundamental discrimination into steady actions; we must develop ‘habit’ formation, involuntary actions of positive nature.
In due course of time, human values will become established in the conscious and subconscious mind. Thus, a silence will settle over the mind, and the voice of conscience will be heard loud and clear. The higher Self, the conscience, then becomes the final arbiter of the conscious mind, resulting in steady, positive action. When Purity of mind is achieved, there will be Unity in thought, word and action.
‘True devotion is an expression of gratitude to God for all that He has given us – the human body with its various capabilities, the intelligence that we are endowed with, and the many natural amenities made available to us such as air, water and sunlight.’
– Sri Sathya Sai (6th March 1987)
In essence, the process begins with good thoughts, leads to good feelings, and manifests into good actions; repeated actions form good habits, these harden into good character, and dictate stable, good behaviour.
Duty, loving service to God, is the body’s prayer to the Divine. The human body is the mind’s instrument of action in the world. It has evolved out of the five elements; it must serve the mind to purify and keep the world in a state of balance. That is the body’s purpose and duty. By selflessly engaging ourselves in service activities, Seva, we are able to transcend the false sense of identifying ourselves with this body alone.
Thus, we initiate an inner journey and become conscious of the Divine Centre within. With an increasing turn to the inner spirit, we begin to share our Love and Peace with everyone.
This Love is capable of producing strong global vibrations to energise the whole world. Thus, we begin to climb an ascending scale of our spiritual evolution; and our will merges with Divine Will.
‘When transformation is gained, you will find that you have travelled only from yourself to yourself, with God all the while in you, around you, with you and beside you.’
– Sri Sathya Sai
Mankind is the same everywhere. Whether a child in Bal Vikas or a pupil in school, whether a youth or an adult, whether a citizen of India or of an Overseas country, the goal of Sathya Sai Educare is identical. A mango seed planted anywhere in the world will grow into a mango tree and yield only mangoes; environmental factors may only affect the ripeness or fullness of the fruits. In a similar manner, the transformation techniques employed in Sathya Sai Educare remain the same. Social and cultural contexts may require changes in the content, the approach may have to be modified from infants to youths to adults, the examples cited may be different; however, the end product shall always be the same. Sathya Sai Educare is applicable universally. It is the summum bonum of all spiritual knowledge, the Vedas of the 21st century.
- Transformation is a journey back to the source.
- The beginning of the transformation process is Faith.
- The five resources, which need to be developed for the transformation process, are Devotion, Duty, Discipline, Discrimination and Determination.
- The five techniques to be employed for the transformation process are: Prayers, Devotional Group Singing, Selfless Service, Tuning In and Good Environment.