Sat Chit Anand
Truth · Consciousness · Bliss
Recipe for Bliss
The sparks of the Divinity are within us; therefore Hindus have the concept of Anand (bliss). We are completely whole – nothing is missing – and this is how we are born.
In fact, there is nothing we can do to make us more whole! The challenge is to discover that we are at total Bliss. All our problems are external. Our true nature, our internal nature, is totally at Bliss.
If our consciousness (chit) realizes the truth (sat) about who we are (a part of the Absolute), then we will be at bliss (ananda).
-The meaning of "Sat Cit Ananda," an explanation by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in 1970 · bienfaits-meditation.com
What Do Hindus Believe In?
In the Hindu belief system, each individual has a dharma that is their sacred duty, our “Calling”, unique to each individual, that we need to discover on our own and live by it.
Then, there is the law of Karma – as according to the Biblical phrase “As you sow, so shall ye reap.” You and I may do the same thing, but the results may be very different. We attribute this to past actions in this life or in previous lives. But karma is not at all fatalistic – we humans have choices. If our past actions can determine our present, then by our present actions, we ought to be able to determine our future.
This connects to the belief in reincarnation. A compassionate God gives us ample opportunities to correct our wrongs, to nurture our assets. This might take more than one life time. Hindus believe in reincarnation - we are on a circle/wheel of life which Hindus call Samsara, where the soul transmigrates after death, eventually reaching the human form, which alone is the gateway to the spiritual world.
Moksha is Liberation; it’s Salvation; it’s going Home – after all we are all spiritual beings going through a human experience.
Discussion question: Which of these do you find easier to accept? Which harder to accept?
The law of karma is an extension of the relationship of cause and effect into the moral sphere.
Karma is not fatalistic – many Hindus themselves incorrectly cite karma to justify the attitude of fatalistic resignation and indifference to the circumstances of their lives and societies.
Properly understood, the law of karma emphasizes free will and insists upon moral responsibility.
Law of Karma and our Choices
Karma teaches us that our choices and actions are consequential!
Our Past is like water under the bridge. Experiencing the results of our previous actions means that our present action will dictate what happens to us in Future.
Therefore, the Present is most important.
According to Hindu Belief, life is a like a pilgrimage, a journey of experience, learning through many different births towards the freedom of spiritual liberation (moksha).
Birth is not an absolutely new beginning, and death is not extinction. Birth can be thought of as the point of entry to the stage of the world and death as the point of exit. This process or cycle of birth, death and rebirth is referred to as samsara.
This entire process of birth, death and rebirth is neither haphazard nor chaotic, but governed by the moral law of karma. Only as humans we can make choices. A cow doesn’t make decisions; animals act on instincts. Therefore, the human form is the highest form and we are all very lucky to be human and it would be a shame to waste this opportunity.
Hindu scriptures refer to 8.4 million species that one can be born into in this process, leading to the highest form, the human form, where we have the free will to attain liberation. Surprisingly, the modern science estimates the count to be somewhat similar: 8.7 million. (bbc.com).
Discussion question: What are the advantages and disadvantages to the concept of reincarnation?
Reincarnation - Very comforting!
Most Hindus believe in Reincarnation – the compassionate God gives us ample opportunity to get it right so that we will all get Moksha eventually. Reminds us of the importance of Human Form where we have choices – Free Will; a gateway to Moksha. It teaches us righteous living!
Achieving Moksha: Selfless Service as Liberation
The inherent nature of the soul is to serve God.
But how does one serve God?
Principles of Right Living
The Basic Values for Hindus remain the same through the Ages:
- Truth & Non-Violence
- Love & Compassion
- Reverence & Care for Parents, Elders, Teachers & Fellow Beings
- Tolerance, Kindness & Forgiveness
- Purity both Ceremonial & Daily Life
- Unselfish Social Service
- Education & Pursuit of Knowledge
- Detachment & Self-Control
- Hard work, Patience & Fortitude
- Unconditional Surrender to God