om namaḥ śivāya
śivāya rudrāya namaḥ
hariḥ om namaḥ śivāya
śiva kesavāya namaḥ
In the future, there may be a Shankaranarayana temple here where Sankara and Narayana are together. It is like the Dashavatara temple that is rare to find. The Dashavatara Venkataramana temple in Guntur includes all ten incarnations of Lord Narayana. People are amazed to see the temple and flock to the temple in large numbers like they do in Tirupati.
Many scriptures and scholarly elders have hailed the oneness of Siva and Kesava. There are many stories to prove this. Yet, we keep distinguishing between the two. That is very wrong. The Skanda Purana states that a Vishnu devotee who hates Lord Siva is not a Vishnu devotee; he is a demon. One must never hate Lord Siva. Lord Siva is easily pleased and is full of compassion. He protects us from all kinds of dangers. Lord Datta and Lord Siva are one. Even though they are responsible for dissolution, they consume all our sins. Lord Siva separates nectar from poison and removes the poison from us. Even though Siva came from Parabrahman, he has no parents. He is without a beginning and is the primordial Lord. Siva and Parvati are the primordial couple. They create and dissolve this universe. Everything that is new and everything that is dissolved is all due to them. Without the conversation between Siva and Parvati, we would not know self-realization. Mother Parvati extracted divine knowledge including Avadhoota Gita, Guru Gita, Upasana Kramas, Lalita Sahasra Nama, Vishnu Sahasra Nama and much more from Lord Siva. Siva is Guru and Guru is Siva. The Lord is referred to as Siva guru. Today on day two, we are peacefully concluding the rituals.
You are rendering all kinds of services. Whenever possible, have Darshan of the various temples. Have a bath in the holy Ganga. How many have dipped in the Ganga? I am happy just seeing you. Have Darshan of Lord Vishwanath, Lord Kedareshwara, Lord Kala Bhairava and Suryanarayana Swamy. There are many Suryanarayana Swamy temples, you can visit at least one of them. We need to report to Kotwal (Kala Bhairava) before we leave this holy city.
Many of you may not have come to Kasi if Swamiji were not here. Even if you did, you would not be here for nine days. How could you have left your home behind and stayed here? The very fact that you are applauding indicates this is true. That is why, Swamiji built a small ashram in Kedar Ghat. It only takes 2-3 days to acclimatize to life here. Your physical immunity and resistance will get stronger. You will be able to live anywhere in the world. We have pampered this body in luxuries – protecting it from dust and constantly living in air-conditioning environments. That makes it hard to do pilgrimages in India. If you are hungry, you should be able to eat simple roti. When sleepy, sleep wherever necessary. Shower in cold water if needed. If you do that, you will live a long and healthy life up to 120 years. You must improve your resistance. There are many old people in slums who have never seen a doctor. They live in dirt, but they are healthy. It does not mean you should live in dirt. You must practice gaining resistance to sickness at least when on pilgrimages. Your minor sicknesses in the beginning will vanish in a few days. That will increase your resistance.
Kasi is much easier to navigate now. It used to be very difficult to even visit Kasi. Prime Minister Modi is a devotee of Lord Siva, so he got the city cleaned. Small lanes and bylanes are all still old and somewhat untouched. The city is centuries old. People are building on the same structures. New foundations have been laid upon old foundations. People dig to find 5-6 foundations laid on top of each other. Now, we must have built the Ashram’s foundation on some other foundation underneath. You can see this in Venice as well. The sea water flows in between buildings and people navigate the city on boats. The water levels are also rising in Venice.
Kasi is the heart of this cosmos. Sri Rama is also pleased when we visit this city. We should forget everything when we come here. Do not pine for your family members back home when you are here. Those who retreat from Kasi due to the conditions here will take on the sins of all the people here. Those who get repulsed by the dirt and leave the city due to fear of infection carry the burden of all Kasi people’s sins. This is absolute truth as commanded by Lord Siva. We should stay here as long as planned. It is okay if we die here. Do not change your plans after you come here. You should not even joke about leaving early. Sins will follow you. These are not my words. This is mentioned in Skanda Purana. I will tell you in detail from tomorrow. We will have discourses for three days starting tomorrow evening. You must listen to the Guru talk about the history of Kasi. You can study any number of books about Kasi, but listening right from the Guru is Upadesam. I will not even let my bad throat stop me. That would be a sin. Prasad has been requesting me to give my voice some rest. But I am not. I have not taken a vow of silence. So, today, go out and see the temples and be careful as you travel the city. Take care of your elders and your children.
You have all adjusted and acclimated well to Kasi. There is no one like Datta devotees. You are a stubborn lot. You must have been in the military in your previous lives. You love Swamiji so much – you go through all trouble for Swamiji and adjust to various situations. You are adjusting yourselves to the environment and accommodation here. That little thing called love you have for Swamiji is even causing attachment in Swamiji for all of you. You do not worry about inconveniences and troubles. You do not worry about food and serving quantity. You do not worry about your health.
There is good milk, curds and butter here in Kasi. This city used to be filled with hundreds of thousands of cows. There used to be more cows than humans. Modi moved the cows out of the city. It used to be difficult to navigate the city. You would have to walk on cow dung all the time. Mr. Modi got the place cleaned, but some cows that are owned by households have been left in the city.
Clean the path Swamiji comes on and put Rangoli. Clean the dirt from surrounding areas as well. Chant “om namaḥ śivāya” and clean the area believing you are cleaning the path for Swamiji’s luxury car (in reality a tuk tuk). The locals will be happy with your service. They may start keeping the place clean inspired by your service. Second, they may invite you inside for cleaning. This is a good opportunity for us to clean this place.
This is really prime location. It is a miracle we have this place. It is almost impossible to get such an Ashram location, especially in Kedar Ghat. This is the womb of Kasi (garbha Kasi). There isn’t such a big ashram in Garbha Kasi. In this birth, we have the good fortune of doing this event here in Kasi. Who knows where Swamiji will do Sudarshana Homa? The food here is very sattvic. From tomorrow evening, Swamiji will do three-day discourse on Kasi. Kasi kanda is really huge. It will take three days although I will tell you in brief. You need to listen to the mantras in Kasi Kanda. They are good for you. Do not miss the discourses.