Shrii Shrii Anandamurti visited Istanbul in 1979. I was a third year student in Boğaziçi University at that time and I did not know about him. He gave 3 lectures in English on September 14 and 15 in 1979. I missed these special gatherings but I have read the text of the discourses countless times. I translated the Istanbul discourses into Turkish. You can find the Turkish versions in the links given at the end of this page. Baba’s Istanbul discourses have been preserved by Ananda Marga but I think that more people should read them.
Beware of Dogma
15 September 1979 Evening, Istanbul
So far as structural solidarity is concerned, the best shape is the oval shape. “Oval” means (in Latin ovum means egg) “similar to an egg, not exactly like an egg but to some extent like an egg; not exactly elliptical but to some extent elliptical”. All celestial bodies are of that shape. That’s why in Sanskrit this universe is called Brahmáńd́a. (Ańd́a means “egg”. And from the Sanskrit word ańd́a it became ańd́á in the Urdu language.)
Now, this universe of ours is very big, but not infinite. It is an elliptical figure, an oval figure, which means it has a boundary line. Yes, it is very big, and actually so big that we cannot measure it; but in theory it can be measured.
Just now I said the most convenient figure is the oval, or elliptical, figure. Take the case of a small atom. Here what happens? In that structure there is the nucleus, the heaviest matter of the structure, and the electrons are moving round that nucleus. A similar structure is our ethereal structure: the earth is the nucleus, and the moon is moving round that nucleus. The next bigger structure is our solar system: the sun is the nucleus, and so many planets are moving round it. And the biggest structure is the Cosmological structure: Parama Puruśa (Puruśottama, the Supreme Nucleus, the Supreme Hub) is in the middle, and so many animated and non-animated objects are moving round it.
Now, this movement is affected by two forces. All students of science know that they are the centrifugal force and the centripetal force. The centripetal force tries to decrease the radius, and the centrifugal force tries to drift the moving object away from the nucleus. In Sanskrit this centripetal force is called Vidyá and the centrifugal force is called Avidyá. (In common parlance, for Avidyá we use the word Shaytán – “Satan” in English.)
Now knowingly or unknowingly, consciously or unconsciously, each and every entity, either physical or psychic, is moving round that Parama Puruśa. In the case of finite objects or finite structures or systems, when one moving entity goes far away from its nucleus, it is attracted by another nucleus, and in the course of this there take place so many clashes among so many nuclei. But in the case of the Cosmological order, there is a single nucleus for the entire [expressed] universe. The question of going beyond the jurisdiction of that nucleus does not arise. That is, when human beings are highly influenced by Avidyá, their radius from the nucleus increases, but the radius is always there. A human being, an animal, a plant, an inanimate object – everybody will have to move; and that’s why I said movement is life. Stirlessness means death.
When Dogma Functions in a Structure
And when people are guided by – not guided by, controlled by – dogmas, their stir is lost, so they become lifeless. They are worse than dead bodies. So you boys and you girls, you should know that you must never allow any dogma to goad you, to drift you, away from your nucleus. Never allow your radius to increase. Always try to decrease your radius. Always try to come in closer and closer proximity to the nucleus of this universe.
Dogma Also a Structure
You may ask, “Bábá,(1) what is dogma?” You should remember, you are all educated boys and girls: dogma is a psychic structure. All ideas are psychic structures; but regarding their boundary lines there should be some flexibility.
I think some of you have come in contact with our Prout theory. I think you have gone through it. There is the fifth item, the fifth fundamental factor, where it is said that the style of utilization should vary in accordance with [changes in] time, space and person. Didn’t I say like this? That is, there is, or there lies, scope for flexibility – no rigidity, flexibility. Because the human mind will not tolerate anything rigid. It wants movement. Not only movement, it wants accelerated movement.
But what is dogma? Dogma is also an idea, but there is rigidity of the boundary line. Dogma will not allow you to go beyond the periphery of that boundary line. That is, dogma goes against the fundamental spirit of the human mind.
(Knowingly or unknowingly, each and every object will have to move round the Supreme Nucleus. There is no alternative. But in case of dogma, what happens? While moving near the Nucleus, the unit mind is highly influenced by the Cosmic Mind as it proceeds towards the Nucleus for the purpose of coincidence. And when it actually coincides, the unit mind becomes one with the Cosmic Mind, and the Cosmic Mind knows no dogma.)
So from the very starting point you should be active, you should be vocal, in fighting against the influence of dogmas. It is due to these dogmas that human society could not progress properly. Otherwise human intellect has developed much during the last five thousand years; it has developed still more during the last two hundred years; and since the second world war – during the last few decades – it has developed still more.
Crisis of Civilization
Now, although there has been intellectual progress, there is a crisis of civilization. What is the breeding ground of this crisis? Why the crisis? The crisis is that human existence, which is highly [developed], has been endangered by dogmas. Its very existence on the psychic level has been endangered by dogmas. On the physical level it may or may not be endangered, but on the psychic level there is danger. If you get guarantees on the physical level regarding eating and drinking, sleeping and getting shelter, that will not suffice. You want to be danger-free in the realm of your mind, in the realm of your intellect. You want unbarred, unobstacled psychic progress – intellectual progress. But certain dogmas with their devouring mouths are trying to eat you up.
Take for example communism, Marxism. It is such a dogma. It will not allow you to think beyond its periphery. So it is the duty of all intellectuals to make people conscious of their present and future and cautious of the all-devouring influence of dogma.
Yours is a path towards Supreme Bliss, and you will have to move forward towards the Universal Nucleus. Now, [so many plants and so many animals] have all got minds. I told you that in the case of undeveloped creatures, mind is inborn instinct, but in the case of human beings, mind remains an ever-expanding force. Everybody is moving, knowingly or unknowingly, with so many ideas, with so many feelings, with so many propensities, with so many desires. But each and every aspirant, each and every artist, each and every scientist and each and every philosopher must be ensconced in this supreme veracity – that they will have to be one with the Supreme, that each will have to coincide his or her microcosmic nucleus with the Macrocosmic one. And while moving towards this Macrocosmic Nucleus, no bar should be tolerated, no obstacle should be encouraged. Let there be an unbarred movement of humanity, let there be an unbarred progress of humanity. Humanity that knows no colour, no racial or garb barrier, no historical or traditional barrier. Human beings have got the same human legacy, and they must boldly stand upon that legacy and move forward with the banner of universal humanity.
[Following the discourse, the author gave a blessing:] Let everybody in the universe be happy. Let everybody in the universe be free from all ailments. Let everybody in the universe see the bright side of everything. Let nobody be forced to undergo suffering.
Shrii Shrii Anandamurti
“Beware of Dogma” was originally published in English in “Ánanda Vacanámrtam 30”, and also in “Prout in a Nutshell 9”
The links to all 3 discourses in English