Question: Will you, please, tell us if vaccination is
Answer: All things are desirable if properly used, and
all are undesirable if abused. In fact, the idea of vaccination
comes from the same theory, which is taught by Shiva – or
Mahadeva – as Hatha Yoga.
It is said of Mahadeva that he used to drink poison,
and by drinking it he got over the effect of the poison. Mahadeva was the most venturous among the ascetics; one
can see this by his wearing a snake around his neck –
would you like to do that? If one can be such friends with
a serpent as to keep it around one's neck, one can no doubt
sit comfortably in the presence of someone one does not
like. That hatred, prejudice and nervousness felt in the
presence of someone one does not like will not arise if
one can wear a serpent around one's neck, if one can take
a bowl of bitter poison and drink it – which is against
nature. Once the soul has fought its battle with all that
makes it fear and tremble, shrink back and run away, then
that soul has conquered life. It has become the master of
life, it has attained the kingdom.
No doubt the methods which Mahadeva adopted are
extreme methods. No one could recommend them to his
pupils and be thought sane in this modern world!
Vaccination is related to fear; fear of germs, which
might come and enter our body: we might breathe them in
or take them in with our water or food. Vaccination is partaking
of this poison which we fear and which might come to us
some day in some form. Such a method may meet with a great
deal of opposition and prejudice, but there is a very strong
reason for the principle behind it. This brings us to a
higher realization and to a great conception of life. It
makes us think that even that which we call death, if it
were put into a cup and given to us to drink, would bring
us to life.
Question: Would you please, tell us something more of
the Shiva aspect of life?
Answer: This is a very vast subject and difficult to
explain in two words. However, the aspect of destruction
can be easily understood by something we see in science,
by the method of inoculation. By putting that destructive
element one fears in one's body, one makes the body disease-proof. That particular disease is no longer a disease but
the nature of that person. This is the method of the mystic;
it is destruction from a spiritual point of view.
Death is death as long as man is unacquainted with it.
When man eats it up, then he has eaten death, and death
cannot eat him; then he is the master of death. This is the
mystery of the message of Jesus Christ who, from the beginning
to end, spoke of eternal life. And the mystery of eternal
life is that once a person has eaten death, he has eternal
In little things one person says, 'I do not like to touch
vinegar, it harms my health'; another says, 'I cannot bear
eating ice cream, I cannot digest it.' Yet another says,
'I cannot stand sugar in my tea, I do not like it.' For
the latter, sugar is poison. If he took poison and made
it part of his nature, the same poison would become sugar.
But by making things foreign to his nature a man makes his
nature exclusive, and by becoming exclusive he subjects
himself to them in a way. There comes a time when they rule
him, a situation in which he is in their power may occur.
A person may say for instance, Quinine is too bitter, I
cannot stand it.' But when he is in a fever, the doctor
says that he must take it. The patient dreads this but his condition
forces him to take it.
It is for this reason that the way of Shiva was
always to work against his weaknesses. He counted these tendencies
as weaknesses; he did not count them as his nature. What is
nature? All is in our nature. But what we cannot stand
we make foreign to our nature when we separate it, and a time
may come when we become so weak that we cannot help becoming
subjected to our weaknesses. There are snake charmers who,
by making snakes bite them a little at a time have gradually
become inured to the poison. They catch the snake in their
hand, and if it bites it does not hurt them. It was the
same with Shiva who is pictured with a cobra around his
neck. Out of death he had made a necklace. There was no
more death for him.
One can go to extremes in this way, but still it is a
law, which should be studied and known. The only mystery
it teaches is not to consider anything as foreign to our nature;
if it was not in us then we would not know about it. That
is the way to overcome all the destruction which is the
source of fear, pain and disappointment.
Question: If nothing is poison, does that mean that there
is no good and bad, no moral?
Answer: No, it does not mean that. Good is good and bad
is bad. But one can rise above badness or one can be submitted
to badness. One can become weak before evil or become strong.
The idea is to become strong before evil instead of weak.
Question: How to understand the sentence from the Gayan:
the only thing that is made through life is one's own nature?
Answer: One makes one's nature by one's likes and
dislikes, by one's favor and disfavor. When a person has
said that he does not like a certain edible thing, he
has built a nature in himself. If afterwards he would
eat such a thing it would disagree with his nature. It
is not because it was not meant to agree with him, but
because he has built up the idea that it would not
agree. It is the same when one says, 'I cannot endure
it, I cannot stand it.'
One makes one's nature either agreeable or disagreeable.
Either one makes one's nature so hard as a rock, which will
not allow anything to enter; or one makes one's nature so
pliable as water, through which all boats and ships can
pass without hurting it. Water gives way for all to pass,
and it is there just the same.
Man, by his thoughts, makes his nature. When he says,
I cannot agree with this,' he will not agree with it; he
has made a wall before himself. When he says, 'I cannot
bear that person,' once he has said it, he has created something
in himself which makes him sick when that person comes to
him. That person becomes his master. The man wants to run
away from him; wherever that person comes, he makes him
ill. It is not because that person brings him illness: the
man has brought illness upon himself.