Swami's Quotations on Grihastha

Dharma is elaborated in a variety of forms known sometimes by the person who codified it (Manudharma), sometimes by the group which followed it (Varnadharma), sometimes by the stage of life to which it is applied (Grihasthadharma). But these are subsidiary details, not the fundamental norm.
[Ref:Sanathana Sarathi, Vol 30, Feb. 1987, 55]

All the four ashramas lead you to moksha or liberation if you follow strictly the dharma as laid down for each and if you devote yourself steadfastly to your uplift. Each ashrama is important to the particular stage; the conduct of the individual, his practice, that is the essential test.
[Ref:Dharma Vahini, p46.]

Whatever be the ashrama, if the person follows the dharma laid down for that stage and carries it out in practice and steadfastly yearns for liberation, he can get it; there is no doubt. To win Atma Jnana, one need not prefer this ashrama to that; all are capable of securing it.
[Ref:Prashanthi Vahini, p43.]

When a person is beset by attachment to some and hatred towards others even in the solitude of the jungle, he will meet only evil. Even if one is leading the grihastha life in the midst of the family, if he has achieved victory over the senses he is a real thapasvi. Engaged in karma that is not condemned, he is entitled to become a Jnani.
[Ref:Prashanthi Vahini, p46.]

Those who are ever active in the spiritual field, in whatever ashramas they may be, whatever may be their caste, they attain the Lord.
[Ref: Dharma Vahini, p47.]

The varnas relate to the physical aspect of man; they cannot affect the spiritual aspect at all. ... Of course, "physical" includes the intellect, the mind, the chiththa, the antha karana, etc. Unless these are trained and regulated, the Atma Dharma cannot be understood.
[Ref:Prashanti Vahini, p46.]

The Atma is Sath, Chith and Ananda; those are its nature, if somehow it has to be indicated. This can be realised only by purifying the heart, mind and intellect of man. Persons who have that purity, whatever their varna or ashrama, can attain moksha.
[Ref:Prashanti Vahini, p46.]

The grihastha too attains moksha; only he must follow strictly the dharma laid down for his ashrama. There is no doubt that every one, to whichever ashrama he may belong, who adheres to the dharma of that ashrama, will attain moksha.
[Ref:Dharma Vahini, p46.]

Being married and living with the wife and children does not constitute grihastha ashrama as most people think. Without giving up the duties assigned to one's caste and status, the person has to treat all with equal consideration - kinsmen as well as others. He must be aware of the rights of the elders and the obligations of juniors; he has to be full of sympathy and willingness to help; he should treat with loving kindness all those who are dependent on him; he must grow wiser with each new experience of the world; he should acquaint himself with the sastras and be alert to do dharma and avoid adharma; he must foster and protect his wife and children with a sense of responsibility; he has to trample down the eight egoisms, the conceit that develops from family, wealth, character, personal beauty, youth, scholarship, native place and even accomplishments in austerity. Conscious of the four goals of dharma, artha, kama and moksha, with no pride in material possessions though he might have them in large measure; utilising a portion of the day in the service of others; with no designs against any other household, himself deserving the trust of his wife and having a trusted wife, each understanding the other and having full faith in the other; such are the ways in which the grihastha manifests.
[Ref:Prashanti Vahini, p10.]

You must ... engage yourself in work that is purifying, with an attitude that sanctifies. Most people do not know how to set about on this most rewarding adventure. They waste their lives in sorrow, wading through disappointment and despair, for they cling to something as theirs and treat something else as belonging to others. They grab and grieve, and labour to acquire and lose. Desire multiplies desire, and man sinks deeper into discontent and distress. This behaviour is really artificial; it does not conform to man's real nature, the prompting of his Atman, which is divine. In the universal, eternal sea of change, the Atman alone is above change.
[Ref:Sathya Sai Speaks, Vol X, p40.]

If hindrances come, dedicate them too to the Lord, take them quietly as His leela and as His plan; that is the way to follow the grihastha discipline, the path for both men and women.
[Ref:Dharma Vahini, p50.]

Love your wife and children and do your duty towards them as a husband and a father. But always hold on to the true values. Do not lose your sense of proportion.
[Ref:Sathya Sai Speaks, Vol X, p216.]

Proceed on the path of Love, the path of God... Love will expand your heart so much that you cannot escape from your duties to your kith and kin. Remember always that wife, son, mother -- all kinship is basically only physical, body-bound, time-limited.
[Ref:Sathya Sai Speaks, Vol X, p216.]

When there is understanding and harmony in the family, peace will spread to the community, and from there to the nation and the world. Unity confers joy and peace.
[Ref:Sanathana Sarathi, Vol 34, Jan. 1991, p4.]

For one who is unattached, the home is a hermitage.
[Ref:Prashanti Vahini, p46.]

The home is the thapovana for attaining non-attachment.
[Ref:Dharma Vahini, p49.]

If there is the will and strength to adhere strictly to dharma, if there are no difficulties in acquiring jnana, one can, without entering sanyaasa ashrama, remain as a householder and yet be liberated.
[Ref:Dharma Vahini, p49.]

Moved by the desire to cross this ocean of samsara, the husband and the wife must both have harmony of mind. The resolution to reach the goal must be equally strong and steady in both. Otherwise sanyaasa is the refuge!
[Ref:Dharma Vahini, p50.]

All ashramas [are] dependent on the grihastha. It is he who provides food and drink to the rest and fosters them. He promotes the study of the Vedas; he guards the scriptures. So the grihastha ashrama is the most important. ... The grihastha who strictly adheres to his ashrama dharma is worthy of the greatest respect.
[Ref:Prashanti Vahini, p43.]

He who earns money by lawful means, he who honours his guests, who serves and pleases his fellowmen, attains liberation along with those learned in the sastras and those who are well established in the fundamental philosophy of the spirit. No one can cross the ocean of birth and death because he is a sanyasi or brahmachari. High ancestry, attainments in asceticism, the status of a monk, profound scholarship - nothing will help, by itself. There must also be the faithful and steady pursuit of swadharma, the study of the scriptures, like the Veda or the Bhagavad Gita, and a disciplined spiritual life of japam and dhyanam.
[Ref:Prashanti Vahini, p44.]

[Article collected from SaiNet - posted by Steve Beckow]