i v a n a n d a s a d m a
We are constantly learning and upgrading ourselves to have better performance in our job, to have a better life quality,
or to become a better person. It is helping in some point of life, but have we even ask ourselves that all of the effort of learning, earning, doing, enjoying, will really give total satisfaction? Even when our bodies get sick, right away we feel that
“I am inadequate to get hold of my own life”. But we never give up to struggle for our wellbeing, because the nature of the self is fullness which none of us would accept being limited. However no matter how we struggle, this fullness nature of mine can’t be found, because we are searching the fulfilment in the wrong place, and we try to fill up the limitation which is a wrong notion we imposed to ourselves. Because of not knowing our limitless nature, we keep searching fulfilment, this is the life of becoming, the life of samsara. This limitless nature of me can be known only through ātmajñānam (self-knowledge) which can’t be stumbled upon, it needs to be unfolded by śāstra through a teacher who learned from the lineage of teaching.
Where should a person start? One should learn from a teacher who has learned from his/her teacher, who has learned from a lineage of traditional vedānta teaching, because this kind of teacher will follow the method of teaching which has been proven effective for vedānta learning. The method of teaching itself will deliver the result when the student is qualified or ready.
What does this knowledge do to us? This knowledge as the means to help one gains the right perception about oneself,
that freedom or happiness is one's nature, one doesn't need to become somebody or in certain situation to be one. However this is a growing process even after one has been told. It is wishful to expect one to understand essence of the teaching just by attending one or two classes, at least one should go through a good year of systematic and continues study then one could see the result of such study reflect in one’s quality living.
This school is named Śivānandasadma, the compound-word itself has two derivations: first, it is a House of Śivānanda. This journey starting from teaching traditional hatha-yoga in Śivānanda Yoga and Vedanta Centre affiliated Singapore for seven years, where we learned the meaning of living with the attitude of karma-yoga. it is the place where all these begin with the blessing of Gurudev Swami Śivānanda Sarasvati that we are able to progress into another step in the sequence of fulfilling the purpose of life, by taking three and a half years residential vedānta course in Arsha Vidya Gurukulam founded by Swami Dayānanda Sarasvati.
Second meaning of the compound śiva - auspicious, ānanda - limitless, and sadma - abode: The place where one finds total well-being which is oneself alone. The purpose of Vedānta or Upanisad and Gītā śāstra is absolute wellbeing as Śankarācarya wrote in the introductory to Gītā bhasyam. This absolute wellbeing is characterised by total cessation of samsara - wish to become something else because one is not comfortable with oneself or current situation. Only through understanding about my true nature, I am comfortable in any situation with or without others. This is called total satisfaction in life.
TEACHING OF BHAGAVAD GITA
Teaching of Bhagavad Gītā consists of seven hundred verses in the form of dialog between Śrīkrsna and Arjuna, is a collection of Veda teaching. While content of Veda/Upanisad is very vast and difficult to comprehend, therefore its essence in the form of two folds pursuit of human being for maintaining harmony in the universe is condensed in the Gītā teaching. These two fold pursuit are characterised by activities pursuing property (pravrttimarga) and by self-knowledge for freedom from attachment/bondage (nivrttimarga). The benefit of Gītā study is for absolute well being which is free from limitation characterised by complete cessation of sorrow. This benefit will be there for one who follows the value system which lead to one’s readiness abiding in the limitless-self. Certainly both value system and limitless-self knowledge are taught in Gītā. Therefore it is called as yoga-śāstra and also brahma-vidyā. When one started to enquire about one’s goal of life and it is no longer pursuing security, enjoyment and prosperity, but looking for self-contentment which is the nature of the self, he/she is the audience for Gītā study.