Books Reviews

The Guide

By: Balu George


The Oneness of all things

God is the taste in water, the radiance of the moon, the snow on mountain tops, and the twinkle in the baby’s eyes. God is the body, the hair, the feet and the sky. God surrounds you, and is within you. God is the drop of water and the ocean. God can be found in the worship places as well as the living room. God is the sweet chocolate and also the dust and dirt. God is the life force. God is also death.

Everything is divine. You are a spark of the divine.

One, we are all one. There is only one truth. The oneness of all things.


The Mind is heaven and hell
Heaven is a state of mind. So is hell. Anger, jealousy, unmitigated lust all are states of mind.
Hell. Joy, peace and calm are all states of mind. Heaven. Hell is never permanent. There is
however a permanent heaven

What is the mind?
Nobody asked somebody. “Where are you from?” “From Hong Kong” replied somebody. “Do you think of Hong Kong?” asked nobody. ”All the time” replied somebody. That which
thinks is the mind. That which feels also is the mind. The mind is a monkey, always
chattering, never at peace. The mind is also a bird in flight. What would we be
without the mind?

What does the mind think about? The mind thinks about places, people, the past and the
future. What does the mind feel? The mind feels happiness, sorrow, anxiety, fear, disgust,
joy and pleasure, so on and so forth

You see a bird. If the mind was absent would the bird exist for you? You feel sorrow. If the mind was absent would sorrow exist for you? If the mind did not exist would the world exist for you? Your mind is the world. The mind is steeped in illusion. We live in an illusionary world. The ego-self is the root of all illusions in the mind.

What is the Ego? We will try finding out what the ego is. Ego is that which get hurt when
somebody insults you, when somebody ignores you, when you don’t get attention or when
you experience defeat. Ego is also that which craves for respect, power, attention and
position. Ego is also that which makes a person feel “I have done this, I have done that. I
own this. I am great. I stand apart from ordinary people”. Ego is that which the self-
righteous feel when they feel “I am righteous. I am not evil. I pray. I do rituals. I help the
poor. I will sit on the right hand side of god. I meditate, I will achieve nirvana. I am special.
The whole world is rotten. I am great”. Ego is also that which makes a person feel “I am
worthless. I am useless. I am dumb. I have been given a raw deal. I am ugly. I want to be
great. I want to be bright. I am an outcaste. I stand apart from ordinary people”. The ego is
many things, but it is most definitely the “I thought”. Ego has been most famously called
the self. So that is what it is. The “ego-self”.


When a loved one dies, do you cry for yourself or the loved one? Feelings arise. Like, you
did not give the person enough love when the person was alive. So you are bad. Or you will
be lonely without the other. The concern is about ourselves. Recognise the ego-self.

The ego-self is the root of all illusions in the mind. Self- abandonment is a good way to get
rid of illusions. Let us consider some illusions.
You are in decent health now. You remember an illness you had a year back or you hear of
a friend’s death. You fear. It is just like when the mind perceives a rope to be a snake, which
is an illusion. The reality is that you are in good health. The concern of course is about

We are always worried about what others think of us. The illusion is that others are thinking
about us all the time and judging us. Others are busy thinking about what you and
others think about them. They are busy in their own worlds. That is the reality. This illusion
breeds other illusions. The concern of course is what others think about ourselves. (Our

Now about some other illusions. You live in a particular area of the world with people who
look similar and follows the same traditions. A name/label is given to the people who live in
that land. Another name/label is given to people who live in another land. Are you the
name? (Indian). No you are you. If you were born in another land would you be that name? (American).No. You would still be you. In this land or that land you would still
be you. The illusion is that you are the name. Names and labels are man-made. The moment you identify yourself with the name & label you let in the great illusion of separateness. The truth of the oneness of all things gets hidden. From the idea of separateness arises pride, insecurity, fear and from all that violence. This is true of the label of country and religion.

There is a piece of land in a city. A factory or a mall comes up near it. The price of the land
increases. The factory or the mall burns down. The price goes down. Did the land change at any time? It remained the same at all times. The world functions, based on people’s attractions and aversions, fears and desires, and ideas of profit and loss. Can you do something about it? No probably not. But you can see the illusion on which the world functions. The land was still the same land.

How can illusions come to an end? By recognition. There is no need to see through to the
reality and actuality. It might be unclear. Sometimes though, it will be clear. That is great.
Just wonder whether you are in illusion and recognise it.



Now about another major illusion. Permanency is an illusion. You take birth, grow and die.
Your teeth bud out, grow, decay and die. On any day you feel joy, sorrow, and anxiety, so on
and so forth. Joy arises, grows and dies, replaced by fear, anxiety or sadness which too
grow and then die. Your body is impermanent, so are your feelings. Fame and fortune
pass, so doe’s failure. Beauty passes. Love turns to hate, hate to love. Everything changes,
everything passes. To accept life is to accept impermanence. For whom does one seek
permanent security? For the self. To let go seeking permanency is to let go of the self. It is
self – abandonment.

The Ego – self passes on
Water. The heat evaporates it. It becomes a cloud. The cloud becomes rain and water
becomes water again. Was water born? Did it die? No it changed form. A chair is burnt.
The wood turns to ashes. And from ashes it shall rise again in another form. Did the chair
disappear? No it turned into something else. The chair has changed form. It still exists. So
the ego-self romantically referred to as the soul– like you throw of a worn out garment
and wear a new one, abandons a body and takes on a new body.

The Oneness of all thing again
Getting back to the oneness of all things. A man sat under a tree. He saw a leaf, the sun, a
drop of water on the ground and a deer. He remembered his parents. He thought, if the
sun did not exist would the leaf exist? If water did not exist would the leaf exist? If the leaf
did not exist would the deer exist? If neither the leaf nor the deer existed would his
parents exist? If his parents did not exist would he exist? The leaf, the sun, the drop of
water, the deer and his parents existed in him. Similarly he existed in all others. Why does’
a thing exist? Because the other thing exists. The oneness of all things is true. In you exists
the sun, the earth, the leaf, the river, the deer, your friend, your enemy, your lover and all
things. Similarly you exist in all others.

There is peace in Acceptance

There is peace in acceptance. Acceptance is to accept what is. Acceptance is to accept
what may be. Also accept yourself as you are. Accept others as they are. Be at peace. Be
content with what you have. To know when enough is enough is enough. For whom does
one want more? For the self. To be content is to abandon the self.

Why are you never content? Because you never realise the value of what you already
have. When you lose an eye only then you realise the value of an eye. When you lose
a family member, only then you realise their worth. Please count your blessings and feel
grateful for your small joys.

You can never possess another person. When the other wants to let go, let go. Be at

Somebody you perceive to be bad has goodness in them. Learn to recognise the goodness
in them and ignore what you perceive to be bad in them.

Comparison is the root of all misery
Comparison is the root of all misery. When you were a baby did you think whether you
were beautiful or ugly, bright or dumb? You did not care. You were happy. Then
comparison started. You started comparing yourself with others. And from comparison
started the misery. Drop comparison. Accept yourself as you are. Let the misery
disappear. Be at peace.

There is only Joy. The joy someone gets from cooking, another gets from travelling and a
dog gets from licking its paw is not different. When you start comparing your joy with
another’s joy misery enters. Stop comparing. Be at peace. Rejoice in your small joys.

Whom does one compare with others? Oneself i.e. the ego- self. To stop comparing is to
let go of the self. Self- Abandonment is to die to comparison.


Pleasure and pain

Pleasure and pain are joined at the hips. Pleasure must invariably find its shadows which are
pain and suffering. When obstacles arise to pleasure, frustration and pain arises. Hellish
states of mind. We want to avoid the pain, so we want to give up the pleasure. This
invariably starts the conflict between “I must” and “I must not”. Torture. This conflict
brings more pain. Are there any solutions? Yeah. Recognise this play of pleasure, pain and
conflict within yourself and others. See it. Just see it. Maybe the letting go will happen.


What if you don’t seek respect and don’t compete
To seek respect is to live in fear. Sometimes we feel we are not respected. Sometimes we
fall from respect. We feel we are disgraced. Now understand that disgrace and non-
respectability exist only if we seek respect. Let go seeking respectability and kill the fear of
non- respectability and disgrace.
Are you fed up of competing? Have you suffered enough? When you were a kid you
competed for ranks, at work you competed for promotions and higher pay. Now you are a
parent. You compete on behalf of your children. You also thrust competition on them. You
have been competing for your parent’s approval, the respect of your peers. So on and so
forth. Is there any solution? Yes there is. Don’t compete. Does not competing mean not
doing work or not doing anything? No. Do, but without the desire to outdo.
Sometimes when we don’t receive attention we feel agitated or sad. Maybe drop the
desire for attention. See what happens. Maybe you will find peace.

If we had only one day to live, would we not call everyone and ask them forgiveness for
the harm we have done to them and forgive them for the harm they have done to us.
Would we not die completely to the chatter of the mind and all our desires? Would we not
want to start the new journey with a light soul? Please die every day. Forgiveness is self-
abandonment. You let go of the ego-self’s hurt and pain. The ego-self weakens.
Please let go, please forgive


Judging others the mind is never at peace
The disciplined judge the undisciplined, the undisciplined the disciplined. The flashy
dresser judges the simple dresser and the simple dresser the flashy dresser. The
educated, the uneducated and the uneducated the educated. A person of one religion a
person of another religion and vice versa. The conservative judges the liberal and the
liberal the conservative. Always judging the mind chatters, never at peace. Drop judging.
Be at peace. Know that others point of views are shaped by their circumstances which is
different from yours. Be compassionate keeping this in mind.


The Oneness of all thing again

Please keep in mind the oneness of all things. Remember we are all one. Please never
forget that.






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