Ignorance, Liberation and Perfection (Auroville) - Audio-1, 11 Feb 2002

I am also a student with you all slightly bigger one, but I am a student with all of you. I want to speak of three words which are very important words, and I want you all to write down those words. Three words: the first word is ignorance, if you find it difficult I’ll spell for you, i-g-n-o-r-a-n-c-e, ignorance. The second word is liberation: l-i-b-e-r-a-t-i-o-n. And the third word is perfection, p-e-r-f-e-c-t-i-o-n. Three words, very important words: ignorance, liberation, perfection.

Now we shall try to understand these three words. Ignorance, what does it mean? Have you come across this word anytime before? Anybody has come across this word before? Yes, who has come across? Tell me yes, good, good. Anybody else have you heard of this word before, yes, yes, excellent, so many have come across, you have come across. Ah you don't know what it means. You now tell me what it means. Ignore, when you don't pay attention. Oh, yes, it's good: when you ignore somebody. You heard this word before? yeah. What do you think it means? What does it mean? You don't know about something, good, when you ignore something, when you don't know about it, excellent, so you can write down the word. Ignorance comes from ignoring, you ignore. If I don't look at you even in the class, I am ignoring, I am looking here, not looking here, so this portion is ignored. Therefore, what is happening here I do not know. So this also is an answer: by ignoring you do not know. Both things happen. You can say these are the two sides of the same coin. If you ignore, you do not know.

All right. Now let us see the second word: liberation. Now, who has heard this word? Yes, good! At least seven people have heard this word liberation. Now, let me ask him: what do you mean by liberation? Freedom. Good, excellent. You have heard the word freedom. All of you have heard the word freedom. Good, so liberation means at the highest level freedom means freedom from ignorance, all right that is the meaning of liberation: freedom from ignorance, because in ignorance you do not know, in liberation you've come to know, so when you have knowledge, you have liberation, so absence of knowledge is ignorance. Presence of knowledge is liberation. Good! You become free when you come to know.

Then comes the word perfection. You have heard this word perfection. Yes, yes, tell me, what is the meaning of perfection? Yes, one doesn't need to be worked on again, yes good, when one does not need to be worked upon again, it’s perfect. You draw a picture and the picture is so beautiful you don't need to work up on it again, perfect. You dress up nicely, your shirt is well pressed, well presented, you look beautiful and you say you're perfect, nothing more to be added. Your body looks so beautiful everything is so proportionately placed in the right place. It’s perfect.

When we move forward, we shall understand these three words more and more, but for beginning this is good. We all understand to some extent these three words: ignorance, liberation perfection. There was a time when little children so long ago, when little children always used to ask this question: how to become liberated. Even little children used to ask this question. At present it is not so, but there was a time when many children used to ask this question: how shall I be liberated and many teachers were there around we used to tell them in order to become liberated. You have to do not only a lot of study, but also you have to control yourself tremendously. You can be liberated when you can control yourself. These two words, to be liberated implies to know oneself and to control oneself.

Yes, what is the meaning of control? It means that if you want to do something but you're not enough when you want to do something, but you're not allowed to do it, excellent. Any other idea of controlling anyone, yes using the remote. Yes, you want to say what is control, what is control? You can know what you are doing only when you are controlled, when you do not know what you are doing. It means that you are under a great pressure. You don't even know what you are doing. For example, you must have experienced when somebody is very angry, he doesn't even know that he's angry, he's simply anger. Afterwards he becomes aware when the anger has calmed down: Oh, I was angry. So it's a very good answer. Control is known by the fact that what you are doing when what you are doing, it means you are in a state of control, good answer. I am very happy with this answer, very good answer. When you want to eat beyond measure, when you eat ice cream, you feel I should eat more and more and more, no? and then suddenly you are told, no don't eat so much. You are right when you say, when you want to do something and you cannot do it and you are not allowed to do it. So this is also a correct answer. When there is a limit, when you put a limit on yourself, then it is called to set control, put a limit on yourself. So these two words were very famous at that time: to know oneself and to control oneself. But then there was a third word, and that was perfection. It was said that you should be not only free, but you should be perfect and although you answered me the question, what is perfect, this question was not sufficiently understood and people were trying to ask the question: what is perfection? I shall reserve this answer for a further date. We should answer this question, but in due course.

Now I told you that in ancient times people were asking these questions all the time. But now, supposing we ask this question, now I have told you these three words and now that all of you will certainly ask in your own minds this question again and again: ignorance, liberation, perfection.

I want to write a story with you. You like to write stories? Yes, I like to write a story with you. I began this story when Dipti met me many years ago, and we started this story. It is still not complete, doesn't matter. We shall start from the beginning of that story. This is a story not long ago. It’s a story of, let us say 50-60 years ago. Now you shall go carefully through the story, so you will understand it better. There was a village in India. You have seen many villages now all around. There are many villages here. So what is a village? So there was a village in India. Now in villages usually there are not many houses, there are small little things, small dwellings, but in this village, although most of the houses were small, there was one house which was very big. It was really very big. It had 20 rooms in this house, it was quite a big house. One day you will paint 20 rooms in a house, all right? To write a story you should also make drawings. So one day you will make a drawing, you think of a very good house with plenty of good rooms. Think of it, and you will make a very good, beautiful drawing of a house with plenty of rooms. So this house has 20 rooms, beautiful rooms and there are only three persons living. It's a big house with only three persons staying.

There was a grandfather and there were two children, a boy and a girl. They were two grandchildren of this grandfather. Of these two children, father and mother were not there. They passed away, so the grandfather was looking after the two grandchildren. He was very fond of these two children, for the last seven-eight years he was looking after them. The elder boy, he was 14 years old. I think many of you are nearly 14. So elder boy was about 14 years old and the girl was about 12 years old. Now the boy has a name, a very difficult name. You might not have heard of such a name normally, but the grandfather was a very nice man, very learned man and he had found a very good word, very simple word and had given him a name Anak and Shweta to the girl. Now what is the meaning of the word Anak? It is not a very well-known name, even in India there is hardly anybody who has got this name, but this boy had a very unique name. Anak means pure. That is the meaning of the word. Anak means a pure, one is pure, and Shweta means white. So you can see both the names were very good names. One was the pure and the other was the white, the pure boy and the white girl, Anak and Shweta.

Now, although there are only three persons in the house, why the grandfather had made such a big house of 20 rooms? Was it all empty? Only three rooms were occupied. All rooms were empty? No.

His father's name was Bhishma Kumar. Bhishma is a very famous name in India. Have you heard the name Bhishma? However, who has read the story of Mahabharata? Anybody has read the story of Mahabharat here? No, nobody? We have read the story of Mahabharata. Have you heard the name Bhishma there? Yes, good. Nobody else? Right, one day we shall come to Mahabharata because it's a very great story, so it is a name in Mahabharata, Bhishma.

So when this grandfather was a young boy, he was a very solid man. Young boy with muscles and brightness and courage and fearlessness, so he was called Vishnu Kumar. Kumar means the son, the son of Bhishma, Vishnu Kumar, the son of Bhishma. But now he was an old man, not very old, between 65 and 70. Now he had now a very long beard, but very bright. His eyes are sparkling bright eyes and solid body, even now. Now he was a very learned man and he always thought that young children should have always a big house. That was his belief. The children should not be put into small cells like prison. Children should have vast air all around. So that's why he had built a big house. And then in different rooms there are beautiful things.

In one room there was a very big picture, not a picture, but a sculpture of the Himalayas, the great Himalayas. Have you heard of Himalayas? Yes, where is Himalayas? Do you know where is Himalayas? Yes, yes, the height of Himalayas. Yes, what is the height of Himalayas? How tall it is? Oh good, not very far. Yes, 8000, good, excellent. Anyway, you can calculate you find out next time when we meet you tell me any one of you has got into the albums and tell me. Now you've got the answer: have you written down the answer? Himalayas the height of Himalayas? You got it? No, nobody has got it yet. You repeat your answer, so that everybody understands to it. 29000 feet approximately, not exactly, but about 29000 feet.

So now, in one room as you open the room, you could see a huge sculpture of Himalaya. That was one very beautiful flower. One day, when you draw the drawing of this this house, you will give to each room its inner side, what is inside the room. Then you open the second room. Now second room was a room consisting of four rooms all put together or opening in that room. The whole of geography of the world was arranged organized geography. What does geography mean? Yes, what does it mean? study of the earth. It’s good, so you had the entire earth put into the different forms. Now you can imagine yourself what kind of room it must be. The whole earth was exhibited there in that room and the third room you opened. It still consists of seven rooms, not one room, not four rooms, seven rooms all put together, and what do you find there? You find astronomy. Yes, what is astronomy? Can you tell me? Yes, study of the sky, good study of the sky. What is your name? Gayatri, excellent, study of the sky.

Sky is not a very ordinary thing. There are so many things in the sky. So what do you expect to see in this room? So many things you can see in this room, astronomical. You can see planets right, you can see the beautiful sun and the planets. Yes, there was a telescope also in this room, very good. Rocks, yes, then a special spaceship had not yet come at that time still, so it was not there in that room, whereas now, when you make a room, you'll have a spaceship in it, all right. So when you make a room for astronomy, even a spaceship in it all right, good, anything else? You can think of astronomy, galaxies, good, excellent. I was waiting for this word to come, now you have spoken it. What is your name? Lisa. How do you spell your name? L-I-S-A, Lisa, good, so there are galaxies. How many galaxies are there in the world? Yes, millions, good, excellent answer, not infinite, but millions, good.

So there were galaxies and stars and planets and moons and the sun. It was very difficult. I agree with you. It was very difficult, but the grandfather was a very learned man. He was a very learned man, so he had put everything so beautiful. Yes, solar system. Yes, what is your name? So this grandfather was a very loved man and he had put everything so beautifully that you can see. You spoke of infinity. No, you could see infinite energy. How to put infinity in finite is a very difficult art.

All art means how to express infinity in finite. Finite is what you understand. The meaning of finite is opposite of infinite. Infinite means that which has no beginning and no end. That’s called infinite. Finite is that small thing which has a beginning and which has an end. All right, so to manifest infinite in the finite is called art. If you are a good artist, you remember this. If you want to be a good artist, a good musician, a good painter, a good architect, always try to see in a painting: is infinite shown? Although the picture would always be small, can infinite come out of it? If infinite comes out of it, it's a very good art.

You hear music, for example if, while hearing music you begin to float in the sky, then you find that the music is good. If you see a big architectural design – and you see oh here – there are galaxies. If you find galaxies in that architectural design, then you can see it's a very good architecture, all right.

So this grandfather, he was a great artist himself, very loved man, very great artist. So he had put such a beautiful picture of the whole universe, infinity in the finite all right. Then, you've come to another room, and what do you find in that room? There were very important books in that room. There are important books. Now tell me what books must be there in that room? What are the important books of the world? Have you heard of important books of the world?

Yes, a dictionary, very good, excellent. Then? What do you think about the good books? The important books of the world were there. Yes, Bible, excellent. There was surely a Bible in it, yes, Ramayana and Mahabharata, of course they were there. What else? Encyclopaedia of the world, excellent. Yes, there was an encyclopaedia of the world. What else? What else do you think was there? Yes, geographic books, good. Atlas, yes, that's what he said and then books of world war, the first, but it was not yet world war. The second had just begun when this story began. World War II had just begun. Yes, the Gita. Surely Bhagavad-Gita was there. Yes, of course astrological books. Also, yes, science books were there, how to discover, how to invent, they were there. Then you have not yet spoken the most important book.. notebook. Of course there were many notebooks there. Yes, it's free history, yes, but what kind of history? Yes, the family history? All right, then yes, excellent books on life. Then music. Yes, then, yes, animal books. Yes, of course about nature nature. Yes, very right, yes, Savitri! Ah that I have to find out whether Savitri was in that library or not in that book. Let us see when Savitri was written, we are in 1940-41. This story is starts in 1945, so let us say 1941. Was Savitri available to people? no, not yet, all right, so Savitri was not there, but should have been there now. Of course, if you go now, I think in that room you will find Savitri, but not at that time. When we are talking about the story, it was not there at that time.

Yes, story of stories for small children. Yes, of course, children's story. Fine, yes, comic books, no except one or two, perhaps, but not yet. There was one very book.. Yes, yes tell me, yes, technology books. The books that Mother wrote? The Mother wrote books from 1940 and this story is 1945, so sure you'll find Mother's books there, right good. Yes, of course, Plato was the greatest, one of the greatest, so Plato’s books were surely there, good.

Then there was a great book called Upanishads. Have you heard the word Upanishad? No, then you write down. This is a very important word. There was a book called Upanishad. When you go to your school next tomorrow you ask your teachers to show you the book called Upanishad. I am sure that your library has started. Yes, your library. Also, we have Upanishads. If you don't have you tell me, then we shall get them because you should see Upanishads. In India the greatest books are called Upanishad, most important books are twelve Upunishads.

So Upanishads were there and then there are four Veda. You have seen the Vedas? Have you heard the word Veda? No, you heard the Veda. No, I must tell you, then these books were very prominent with their first books as you entered the room. The first was Rigveda. Second was Yajurveda, third was Sama Veda, fourth was Atharva Veda. Difficult words, No? But try to understand. They were the first books when you entered the house, that room, the first four books were these four books, so I shall write down, so four Vedas. Now, as you enter the room, you find these four big books, Rigveda Yajur Veda, Sama Veda and Atharva Veda and then below it was written books that tell you of ignorance, liberation and perfection. These four books were put in a large way and below was written books that tell you of ignorance, liberation and perfection and below that there was written in very small letters, deliberately small letters. What was written there? The knowledge that matters most, that was written below. If you want to know what is the most important knowledge, then you find in these four books: Rigveda, Yajur Veda, Sama Veda and Atharva Veda.

And after these four books there was a next one. There’s only one book, the modern Veda, it was written in big letters: the Modern Veda. This was very ancient Veda long long, thousands of years ago, then there was another book which was called the Modern Veda and there was only one book. What was it called? What was the name of the book? The Life Divine.

So now this was a very big place. These are the all important books which are lying in that room. Then came a museum, a small museum, not a big museum, and then there was next one: an exhibition room, now exhibition room was completely empty. Deliberately grandfather was a very wise man and he had said to his children, grandchildren. I am keeping this exhibition room completely empty. Why? Because I want you to paint, to draw beautiful pictures and when you have drawn pictures you would exhibit them. So exhibition room is reserved only for these two children. When you get a good idea, write it down beautifully and exhibit it. You get a very beautiful picture. You draw and put it there and grandfather made it always a habit to visit it every day. So children were always anxious to put something in the morning. They would put up their new things in the evening. They would go out. Next morning again something new will come up and grandfather would come to see and admire what the children have done.

And then, of course, there was a beautiful room of Anak and a beautiful room of Shweta and a good room of the grandfather, Bhishma Kumar. All right, our story will continue tomorrow. Now it is 12 o'clock, exactly one hour we have spent together. Now you will think of the story. As I told you, we shall write this story ourselves. We shall prepare the story. I will go on giving you some incidents as they occurred in the lives of Anak and Shweta, a very beautiful story, but you will also imagine, you will think yourself what must be happening to the brother and sister who are living together in such a good environment. So shall we meet tomorrow again? Yes, we shall continue the story. We shall see ultimately how these two children learn about ignorance and liberation and perfection. All right, we shall learn about it. Fine, thank you.