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As we reflect on the year that has past and set directions for the year to come, these pearls of practical wisdom based on Sathya Sai Baba’s teachings can be applied by all, no matter the background.

Spiritual Nurturing of the Body

Diet

  • Eat with gratitude, reverence, focus, and patience.
  • Avoid distractions (television, computer, phone, book) during your meal.
  • Eat moderately – stop eating when two-thirds full.
  • Eat more fruits and vegetables. Eat more foods in their natural state. Eat more seasonal and local foods.

Activity

  • Arise early and turn in early for the night.
  • Upon arising, reflect and set an intention for the day, and express gratitude for the gift of this new day.
  • Upon retiring, reflect upon the days events, resolve to correct mistakes, and express gratitude for the gifts of the day.
  • Sit in silence for at least a few minutes each day. 
  • Walk in the morning or evening, daily (think positive uplifting thoughts during the walk; appreciate the beauty of nature; feel gratitude).
  • Play games.

Spiritual Nurturing of the Mind

Principles

  • See the unity that underlies the diversity of life.
  • “Love” is that which unites; “hate” is that which divides.
  • A “virtue” is that which unites; a “sin” is that which divides.
  • “Good” is that which unites; “evil” is that which divides.
  • Everything that happens to you is a potential learning and growing experience toward seeing unity.

Outlook

  • Remember that you are in charge of your own happiness.
  • Remember, the earlier you replace negative thoughts with positive thoughts, the happier you will be.
  • Keep in mind that both happiness and sorrow, when dependent upon that which is outside of us, will always be impermanent.
  • While you have to learn from the past, you also need to move on and live in the present.
  • Undertake each activity with enthusiasm.
  • Be passionate with regard to effort and dispassionate with regard to results. 
  • Know and respect your limits. Avoid overactivity or excessive commitments. 
  • Be lighthearted. Smile and laugh more.

Spiritual Nurturing of Relationships

  • Be eternally grateful to your parents for granting you this life. Express your gratitude by respecting them and making them happy.
  • Cultivate time with the elderly, for the influence of their wisdom, and with the young, for the influence of their energy.
  • Focus on improving your own weaknesses rather than dwelling on the perceived weaknesses of others.
  • Forgiveness is more about freeing yourself than freeing the other.
  • It is more effective to sway others by your actions than by your words.
  • Nurture empathy.
  • Offer good deeds each day. A smile is a good deed. A prayer or positive thought is a good deed.

— Axay Kalathia
Bradenton, Florida
Sathya Sai Newsletter, Vol 37, No 1 (2013)