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103. జీవన్ముక్తి (Jeevanmukti)


A stage where one feels liberated from the shackles of body and mind and starts serving others.

A person who is a jeevanmukta will not serve. This concept of jeevanmukta is available only in advaita. It is not availabe in visistadvaita. A person who is a mukta does not have any responsibility, and a person with no responsibility will not work. So, Ramanuja refused to accept jeevamukta as a condition, he said videhamukti only. If you want to be liberated, you are liberated only after the body. Till your body is there, you better serve others. No exemptions are given, till you are there you better serve. Service is the means. When asked what the end was, he said that is the end. He refused to accept jeevanmukta as a goal towards which you can go. It is a very obstinate stand of Ramanuja. I think very correct also otherwise society has no meaning. If every body seeks of jeevanmukti and everybody comes to a state of standstill, the whole world will collapse. That is why advaita is impossible to practice, impractical.

When there is service, there is no individual, the individual has to be eradicated. You can do best service when you don't live for yourself. The mother serves the child because she does not live for herself. Such mothers who want to live for themselves, will never serve their children. Service and sacrifice are possible only when you are in the stage of jeevanmukti. There are many people amongst us. When we forget all our interests and we are prepared to do service for others. Those people who are not prepared to serve others without forgetting themselves, definitely are not liberated, they are not jeevanmuktas.

Take Babuji cleaning the latrines of the abhyasis at Shajahanpur. It is a fact. He used to go and clean around 2 in the night. These people never used to clean the latrines there. Temporary latrines used to be constructed. Around 2 o clock in the morning he used to check if everything is correct, spray some phenyl. They are jeevanmuktas. They do not have awareness that they are gurus and somebody else has to do. They do not even think they are far higher than this condition, they will serve.

My acceptance of Master as a guru also is because of this example. First time I went to Shajahanpur, he asked me to go to inside his room, meditation room. I was lazy and was sitting down. In the meanwhile, Babuji Maharaj came and said 'I have kept hot water in the bathroom and you can go and take bath'. It was a shock to me, his going to put the hot water there. The service done by such people is service. People will laugh if we say our service is service.

An incident in Swami Vivekananda's life is depicted in the game of life here to understand the condition of Jeevan Mukta. In 1898 a severe plague broke out in Calcutta, India causing many deaths. At that time, no one volunteered for service, as they were afraid of getting infected. Swamiji not bothering about him self, cleaned the streets of Calcutta of the dead rats and helped in controlling the epidemic. This gesture of Swamiji shows the condition of liberation from Self.