Imperience - Centre for Research and Training in P.A.M
 

MURAD AND MALAMITA

Dr.S.V.Raghavan

The topic is very aptly chosen as it underscores the attitudes the sadhaka has to develop and maintain throughout his sadhana as an ideal disciple and as a person who has moved significantly in the path securing close proximity to the Divine. We also note that the first type is according to the classification of disciples by Rev. Babuji Maharaj while the other one follows the classification of devotees according to their stage by Rev. Lalaji sahib.

MURAD

Murad is the ideal disciple who has become the cynosure of his Master’s eyes. Murad refers to ‘desired object’ or ‘object of love’ and Murid refers to ‘desirer of object’ according to a Sufi Glossary. Murid is a person who has decided to follow a master (‘Murshid’) in the spiritual path. The term is more often used to mean a novice.

We are aware that the Master has classified disciples and gurus in His work Sahaj Marg philosophy (Ref. 1 pg 66) and we get an elaboration of the same in ‘Types of gurus’ (Ref. 2 pg 448-449). He mentions five types of disciples out of which the highest category is the ‘devout disciple’ as per Ref 1 and specified as ‘murad’ in Ref.2. The class ranked just below the highest one is ‘the earnest disciple’ as per Ref.1 (called ‘devotee’ in Ref. 2). The earnest disciple is the one who tries follow in the steps of the master and tries to copy him. ‘He starts from the condition of devotee and loves the Master intensely. He always keeps himself internally connected with his guru. Men of this type possess all those qualities that should be present in a disciple. From among these devotees rarely one or two acquire the condition of a Murad (devout disciple). A murad is one who has become the object of love of his master’(Ref. 2). Such a disciple has become the focus of his master’s attention. He is perfectly oriented to his master always and is in his constant remembrance. The master can not help remembering such a disciple and is ever restless to grant him stages on the path. The disciple on his part is totally resigned to his master’s will in every respect and has nothing else in view except the master who is all in all for him.

Master has also mentioned another way to characterize the disciples following the sages, namely ‘manmatha’ and ‘gurumatha’ (Ref. 1 p 66), the former being those who approach the guru with some particular worldly end in view such as relief from misery, desire for wealth etc.

They submit to him only so long as they are hopeful of satisfaction of their desires and quit if they happen to meet with any disappointment in that regard. There is no question of obedience or submission in their case not to talk of surrender. On the contrary the gurumatha disciples obey the commands of the master in all matters and try to submit to his will in all possible ways. Submission begins with obedience which follows as a consequence when the seeker is impressed by the great powers of the master of higher attainments of spirituality. The murad is then the crest jewel among the ‘gurumatha’ disciples.

We can easily infer that the murad has developed real faith, shraddha, one of the higher attainments constituting six sampattis mentioned by the vedantins. As a matter of fact he would possess in addition sama, dama, uparathi, ekagra, and samadhan in their states of maturity. It goes without saying that he would be endowed with viveka and vairagya (which result automatically when sham the first sampatti is practiced) in their mature manifestation. At this stage he becomes a mumukshu and Master states (see Ref.3 p 208 below), ‘Little remains now to be accomplished when a man comes to this stage except to develop close association with Absolute Reality or actual merging in the state of non-entity’. The article ‘Spiritual Training’ (Ref. 3 p 205-214), a correlative study linking the above states with the knots, may be referred for an in depth understanding of the above subject. As the subjects of devotion, faith and surrender have been exhaustively treated in our literature, I would merely touch upon their states of exaltation which ought to find expression in a murad with a view to recall them to our minds for betterment in our sadhana.

Taking up devotion first, its finest manifestation has been given in the following words by the Master, ‘But then there is the electric fire as well, which by passes the first two stages (suppressed smouldering giving out thick smoke and the second with occasional sparks in it) and appears only in the final state (a bright burning flame capable of reducing everything to ashes in a moment’s time), free from smoke and vapour.---Real devotion has no tinge of affection in it and goes hand in hand with enlightenment.—The superfine level of devotion may be spoken of as total self- surrender from which awareness of surrender has been withdrawn by the grace of the Supreme Master’(Ref.1 p 62-3). He bears a love for the master which is continuous and endowed with intimacy characterized by Rev. Lalaji as ‘uns’ wherein it is not known what for such a love is there (Ref. 5 p 161-2).

As regards ‘real genuine faith’ the Master states, ‘(It) is so firmly established that a man cannot even for a moment get away from it.
The reasons for this are, however, beyond his understanding.—It begins to assume the form of self- surrender’ (Ref.4 p 250). Master speaks of such faith as an unspeakable virtue beyond the scope of religion; it is the dauntless courage which leads us to success, the ubiquitous force which makes our path smooth and the only thing which solves the problem of life. Real faith constitutes a lively and unbreakable link connecting the mortal with the Immortal and the link is affected through the medium of the Master who is Himself connected with the Immortal. This unshakable faith (in the Supreme Master) which endures despite all the trials and tribulations one encounters in life leads the aspirant to the farthest limit of spiritual attainment. The special will which every aspirant is encouraged to develop for effective participation in the Master’s work is rooted in the bedrock of such a faith.

Considering the mature state of self-surrender Master states, ‘A man does everything thinking it to be his Master’s will. The question of right or wrong does not at all arise in his mind, or it becomes absolutely certain that by following his Master’s will he is doing nothing but the right, feeling it to be his Master’s will’ (Ref.4 p 262). In line with the above we find Him saying, ‘in surrender the abhyasi’s will merges into Master’s will.’ (Ref. 2 p 262) In the same vein there is yet another statement of His, viz. ‘Self-surrender is nothing but a state of complete resignation to the will of the Master, with total disregard of self. A permanent stay in this condition leads to the beginning of negation.’ (Ref.1 p 65) He states further, ‘Surrender is free from any conscious idea of ego. Everything there goes on in an automatic way according to the need of the moment without any previous or after thought.’ (Ref.2 p 484-5)

Master has also stated, ‘Such people (murads) are rarely found and like wise the Gurus also are rare. Rev. Lalaji had written to me in one of His letters that in these days as many ‘murids’ are seen as the pores of the body, but ‘murads’ are very rare’ (Ref.2 p 449) We need not look beyond the Master Himself for a murad as he is one in whom Rev. Lalaji merged.

MALAMITA

Rev.Lalaji in His article, ‘Spiritual journey’ (Ref.5 p 170-4) talks about three stages of devotees of God, Sant and Sadhu viz., 1) Ayad or Abid 2) Sufia and 3) Malamita. We need to look at the first two stages for gaining a proper understanding of the Malamita stage by means of contrast, though the topic under consideration is the third one.

People in the first category perform external prayers, such as, Fasting, Sandhya, Puja etc., and are busy doing good things like yajna, vrata, daan, pilgrimage etc. They do not have happiness and bliss like the Sufis who pay much more attention to internal sadhana. If, however, an ayad experiences happiness he moves to the category of the Sufis. The Abid category do not follow the above said observances but make others to perform the same and are Pujaris, another name for Abid. They are not interested in meditation and internal practices like Sufi and Sadhu.

The persons in the malamita stage, though they belong to a category of Sufis, dress like common people unlike the Sufis in general who wear the special uniform. The malamitas live like common people; they perform external worship like the rest but do not exhibit any miracle and supernatural things. Nor do they pose as famous persons. They try their best not to reveal themselves in social gatherings and among friends. They practice also internal sadhana with dedication such as dhyana, dharana and Samadhi step by step.
All their dealings will be like ordinary grihastas and they try to maintain friendship and socialization to the extent possible. They also go by the names, Sufi, Sant, Vali Siddha and Sadhaka. They are characterized by Ikhlas –a pure intention without any fluctuating temperament, the inner and outer being the same without any duplicity. Action follows words and vice versa. They hide their identity from the common people copying God in this respect even as He has hidden Himself from the eyes of every body though He is present every where. There is no ahankar in them or any desire for pomp and show. They have attained the state of Abhudiat, so highly spoken of by our Master.

In contrast with some saints (fakirs) who believe that there is none who would deserve more to be worshipped than them and also prevail upon people to worship them, the malamitas entertain no such feelings. They would however willingly assist any person seeking such assistance on the Path as a fellow being in the spirit of total dedication, service, sacrifice and fraternal duty. The feeling of orthodox gurudom is totally absent in them. This is despite the presence of all attainments, merits and qualifications in them to function as masters. In spite of being complete Jnani they do not think or act against nature.

Rev. Lalaji mentions in passing another subgroup in the above category considered as ‘thucch’ (to be looked down upon as blemished or blameworthy). They exhibit themselves, though not violating dharma internally, in such a way that is found normally objectionable to the common people who are not able to appreciate the subtlety involved. For instance they may talk incoherently, shouting like a mad man and doing several things which would make the common people think of them derogatively or as ‘thucch’. They are however much lower in rank amongst the Sufis and whatever they exhibit is artificial. I feel that this is the sect called- ‘malamati- (malamat –blame) or those who follow the path of blame, in the Ref.6 cited earlier. The followers of the path of blame believe that blame has a great effect in making love sincere. It helps in cultivating humility; also it has the effect of isolating the devout seekers from the worldly persons who are made to despise and shun them by their outwardly offensive behaviour. The Malamitas (apart from the above group) are however much better because the common people consider them to be similar to themselves. This frees the malamitas in an entirely natural way from feelings of self-conceit, the worst and toughest of the veils between God and man and which every seeker has to strive to eliminate by assiduous sadhana, self-analysis and not the least, indispensable grace of God.

The above description of malamitas (especially the highest category among them) reminds us firstly of the lives of the Masters of the Order and their close followers. Their life exhibits the 9th commandment namely ‘live in such a way as to induce love and piety in others’. It also evokes the definition of mahatma given by our rev. Master viz., ‘I would define a Mahatma as the most insignificant being or rather a neglected figure, beyond all feelings of greatness, pride or egoism, dwelling permanently in the state of complete self-negation’ (Ref. 2 p 71-2) If the goal is complete laya avastha in brahm (through laya avastha in Master) the most effective means for attaining it is only through total negation. Our rev. brother KC Narayana states in ‘Our Spiritual Order’ (Ref. 7 p 96-7), ‘God or the Ultimate has been viewed and loved from different angles and accordingly the means were chosen. The Natural Path is characterized fundamentally by the principles of cooperation (Pranahuti), integration and negation. The approach in sadhana of Dr.KC Varadachari is that integration is a positive way of looking at negation. We find that Dr KC Varadachari is unique in reaching the goal of Negation by extinguishing himself utterly by living as an intimate of his Master.’

May the Master bless us all with His bounteous grace so that we assiduously follow in the footsteps of the Great Masters of the Order through meticulous sadhana and enthusiastic participation in the execution of the Divine plan of transformation and uplifting of human consciousness.

References:

1. Wisdom Unfurled;
2. Silence Speaks – Second Edition May 2007
3.Bodhayanti Parasparam V1, Third Edition, 2003
4. Basic Writings of SriRamchandra, 2008
5. Journey to Infinity, 2008
6. ‘The Kashf al Mahjub’, Ali bin Uthman Hujwiri, (Eng. Tr. Prof. R.A.Nicholson);
7. Bodhayanti Parasparam V5., 2007