The Song of the Infinite

The Vedas are the most ancient scriptures in the library of consciously evolving
humanity. For our own conscious evolution we may be inspired to read the
Vedas by Max Müller?s encouragement: ?I maintain that everybody who
cares for himself, for his ancestors, for his history, for his intellectual
development, a study of Vedic literature is indispensable.?<br>
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The Vedas embody intuitive visions, divine experiences and life-illumining
Realities. From the ignorance-sea we have to enter into the Knowledge-Sea.
The Rig Veda inspires us, saying, ?The vessels of Truth carry men of good
deeds across the ocean of ignorance.?<br>
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Presentday human life is nothing but an endless despondency. To come out
of the trap of despondency is almost impossible. But the Yajur Veda offers
us a solution: ?He who sees all existences in the Self and the Self in all
existences, falls not into the trap of blighting and weakening despondency.?<br>
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The Vedas are universal; hence, the West can claim them as well as the East.
The great American philosopher Thoreau said something most significant about
the Vedas: ?What extracts from the Vedas I have read fall on me like the
light of a higher and purer luminary which describes a loftier course through
purer stratum, free from particulars, simple, universal. The Vedas contain
a sensible account of God.? Undoubtedly they do.<br>
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The firm belief of Sir William Jones is challenging and at the same time
illumining: ?I can venture to affirm, without meaning to pluck a leaf from
the never-fading laurels of our immortal Newton, that the whole of his theology,
and part of his philosophy, may be found in the Vedas.?<br>
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The Vedic commandment for the human physical is Shaucham. Shaucham means
purity?purity in the body and purity of the body. Without the body?s purity
nothing divine in us can expand; nothing divine in us can be permanent.<br>
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The Vedic commandment for the human vital is Ahimsa. Ahimsa means non-violence?non-violence
in the vital and non-violence of the vital. It is from non-violence that
man gets his greatest opportunity to feel that he does not belong to a small
family, but to the largest family of all: the universe. India?s philosophy
of non-violence was first put into practice by the compassionate Lord Buddha
and his followers. Gandhi?s non-violence was a most precious gift to the
life-loving humanity of the present.<br>
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The Vedic commandment for the human mind is Satyam. Satyam means truth or
truthfulness. Truthfulness in the mind and truthfulness of the mind alone
can lead us to a higher life, a life of illumining Divinity and fulfilling
Immortality.<br>
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The Vedic commandment for the human heart is Ishwarapranidhan. Ishwarapranidhan
means the heart?s loving devotion to the Lord Supreme. When we have pure
and spontaneous devotion for the Supreme Lord we feel our inseparable oneness
with Him, with the Eternity of His Spirit, with the Infinity of His Body
and with the Immortality of His Life.<br>
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In the Vedas the concept of sacrifice looms very large. We sacrifice to God
what we have: ignorance. God sacrifices to us what He is: Perfection. God?s
sacrifice is always unconditional. Our sacrifice at times is conditional
and at times is unconditional. In conditional sacrifice we fight and win
the battle. In unconditional sacrifice we do not have to fight at all, for
the Victory is already won. Victory is our birthright; it is forever ours.
Sacrifice is self-offering. Self-offering is self-fulfilment. Self-fulfilment
is Love-manifestation and Truth-perfection. Through our outer sacrifice we
become a divine part of Mother-Earth. Through our inner sacrifice we become
an immortal part of Father-Heaven. We make the outer sacrifice when we come
out of the domain of binding desires and enter into the domain of liberating
aspiration. We make the inner sacrifice when we try to manifest God in the
world of ignorance after having achieved God-realisation. The outer sacrifice
demands the strength of a hero. The inner sacrifice demands the power of
an army. With our outer sacrifice we see the Truth. With our inner sacrifice
we become the Truth.<br>
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Mount Holyoke College<br>
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South Hadley, Mass.<br>
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November 28, 1972<br>
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Sri Chinmoy&nbsp;