Timeless Relevance of Teachings of Baba Neem Karoli Maharaj

In the beginning there was nothingness…. No matter, no space, no energy, no air and no water.

According to the universally accepted big bang theory, Universe began from a singularity, almost a atomic size particle containing the entire universe, around 14 billion years back. Our own planet earth came into existence around 4.6 billion years back. Life started on earth around 3.5 billion years back, in sea, as a single cell organism. We, the humans, are the newest guest on Earth. Everything in the universe has been created by combination of Panch-Tatwa (five elements) and gets converted back to same panch-tatwa in never ending ‘perfect’ cycle of nature.

Earliest humans lived their lives almost in the same way as other creatures. Humans, however, were capable of doing much different. Blessed with the power to think and contemplate, man started looking for answers beyond physical requirements. In early stages of human evolution and habitation, small ‘groups’ started living at favourable ‘habitats’. These groups, in the process of building great civilizations, developed their own traditions and value systems. Most of these traditions were suitable only to their local conditions, circumstances and challenges, and this knowledge remained primarily with a small group of people. One thing common in all these traditions was ‘betterment of self and society’.

The origin of religion is uncertain, but it has been suggested that it evolved for the nurture of children. There are a number of theories regarding the subsequent origins of organized religious practices. According to anthropologists John Monaghan and Peter Just, “Many of the great world religions appear to have begun as revitalization movements of some sort”. Invariable every religion is an organized collection of belief systems, cultural systems, and world views that relate humanity to spirituality and, sometimes, to moral values. All the religions also reflected on origin of universe, origin of life and provided guidelines to live in oneness with our surroundings and reach the goal of self actualization.

All the religions had a common factor of ‘serving humanity’ and recognized Panch-Tatwa (Panchmahabhootas) as the building block of everything we see around us and ourselves (though with little variations depending on individual observations).

Dharma is the Law that “upholds, supports or maintains the regulatory order of the universe”. Dharma has the Sanskrit root dhri, which means “that without which nothing can stand” or “that which maintains the stability and harmony of the universe”.

Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, and Sikhism all have the idea of dharma at their core, where it points to the purification and moral transformation of human beings. All the tatwas work within their Dharma. Water is meant to provide coolness, to cleanse, to hydrate; fire is meant to purify; and so on. Dharma for humans is to do everything which maintains the stability and harmony of the universe.

Many religions have narratives, symbols, traditions and sacred histories that are intended to give meaning to life or to explain the origin of life or the Universe. From their ideas about the cosmos and human nature, they tend to derive morality, ethics, religious laws or a preferred lifestyle. According to some estimates, there are roughly 4,200 religions in the world.

Baba Neem Karoli Maharaj propagated the concept of ‘Hanuman Ji’ to convey the same idea. Hanuman represents an entity having ‘perfect knowledge’ and ‘perfect power’ having capability to execute even seemingly ‘impossible’ tasks using his mastery and deep understanding of ‘Panch Tatwa’. In the core of ‘Hanuman’ is greatest virtue of ‘selfless service’.

The fundamental basis of existence of universe and all the creatures on it, including humans, is the balance of panch-tatwa, which is being greatly disturbed by humans. ‘Blind cannot lead the blind’ and hence we need people having complete knowledge and mastery on the subject of Panch-tatwa to transfer this vital knowledge to humans.

All great saints of their time demonstrated importance of the virtue of ‘Humanity’ and taught us fine art of balancing the Panch Tatwa. These were common attributes of ‘God’ figures like Jesus, Mohammed, Ram, Krishna, Budha and ‘Godly Saints’ like Sai Baba, Baba Neem Karoli and others. All of them had complete mastery over the Panch Tatwas. What seem and sounds like ‘miracle’, like transforming from one form to other, being present at more than one place at the same time, was all the result of mastery over interplay and interconnectedness of ‘Panch Tatwa’. They understood that Panch Tatwa are inter-related by the principle of the five-fold integration, i.e. a given unit of each of these elements contains only half of its pure essence while the other half consists of one eighth part of each of the other four elements. This highlights the principle of unity and integration that exists in the entire universe, mastered by Masters like Baba Neem Karoli.

It’s time to move from ‘diversification’ to ‘unification’. We need to make the transition towards ‘global village’ or a ‘global society’. It’s the time to move from ‘intelligence’ leading to selfish behaviour, to wisdom. Wisdom is the judicious application of knowledge. ‘Wisdom’ is the ability to make correct judgments and decisions. It is an intangible quality gained presumably through experience. Lord Ram, Krishna, Jesus Christ, Mohammad Sahab, Gautam Budh, Sai Baba or Baba Neem Karoli are not present in the physical form yet people from all walks of life have strong faith and beilief in these supreme powers who help them achieve their goals in life. Wisdom is timeless.

Only Humans are capable of changing the world……for good or bad. The answer to today’s challenges lie in restoring balance of ‘panch tatwa’ and falling back on our traditional wisdom to re-discover the science of ‘Panch Tatwa’. Only such knowledge will be complete, helping individuals to act strategically towards sustainability. Traditional wisdom has extremely rich contents for overall growth of humans living in balance with its universe. It has the potential to practically transform our lives and eliminate the challenges and threats we face today, due to imbalances created by us due to our ignorance and disrespect towards laws of nature.