Date: Mon, 27 Oct 1997 00:10:06 -0600 (CST)
From: KANAGARATNAM <pannir@...
To: The Divine Life Family <pkanagar@...
Subject: Sivananda Day-to-Day (41)
Om Namo Bhagavate Sivanandaya!
Om Namo Bhagavate Chidanandaya!
Om Namo Bhagavate Krishnanandaya!
ON OBSERVING SILENCE: Sri S.C. approached the Master and said, "Swamiji,
I intend to observe complete silence for a fortnight."
"Why need you ask me? You can always do whatever Sadhana you wish to do."
This is the first stage. The Master gives spontaneous encouragement to all
in their Sadhana and makes them feel at complete liberty to do what they
"It is only an experimental measure, Swamiji. Nowadays I am disturbed
very much and talk a lot. This complete silence will be the beginning of
reduction of speech, Swamiji."
"What will you do during the observance of silence?"
"I will not talk Swamiji. I will not even nod my head. I will not convey
any thought to anyone through any means. Whatever comes I will accept."
"In other words, you will behave like a mad man!"
"Then you will have to tom-tom the news: 'Sri S.C. is going to observe
complete silence for fourteen days'! Otherwise everyone will come and
disturb you, and they also will be put to difficulty. Will you not do any
work or reading and writing too?"
"Yes, Swamiji, I will certainly do some work and read. In fact, that is
the purpose for which I am undertaking this silence."
"That is good. Speaking a little when necessary, for the purpose of
serving, consoling and inspiring others, is itself silence. Others also
will not be inconvenienced. In fact, if you have to console and inspire a
hundred people daily, you may speak all the twenty-four hours. This also
is silence only. It will not be contrary to your Sadhana but a great help
to it. Only useless talk is a waste of time. What is there in observing
complete silence. It is only misusing and disusing a great gift of the
Lord. See the Lord in all. All your talk should be about His glory and
about Divine Life. This is infinitely superior to complete silence."
This is the second stage. The Master beautifully and non-violently brings
home the truth to the aspirant.
"As an experimental measure for a few days complete silence is good. You
will gain a lot of experience."
"Yes, Swamiji, that is the idea. And after this period of complete
silence I will try to limit my speech."
Now comes the third and final stage. The Master, if he finds that the
aspirant is intent upon doing what he wants to do, will wind up the
discussion with unstinted and unlimited encouragement.
"Yes, yes, certainly you can do so. It will bring about a marvellous
"You may have so much of knowledge of the world but what is the use if you
do not have any knowledge of your own self?" - Swami Chidananda