The Sky of The Heart: Jewels of Wisdom From Nityananda
compiled and translated by M.U. Hatengdi and Swami
Chetanananda; Rudra Press P.O. Box 13390 Portland, Oregon 97213.
Editor, Cheryl Berling Rosen
Contributed by M
The Chidakash Gita
Nityananda: In Divine Presence
For centuries Westerners have seen India as a land of magic and mystery. Western writers describe both fiery-eyed mystics performing apparent feats of magic as well as a rigorous system of scholarship in philosophy pursued with energy and precision for thousands of years. India is a land of stunning and overwhelming contrasts. But of all its extraordinary and mysterious features, one of the most amazing is that every fifty years or so she is gifted with the presence of a great realized being--a mahatma. Such a person is born totally pure, innately free of any attachment whatsoever to the world and to worldly things. Because of the mahatma's total immersion in the Divine and Universal, the flow of energy through his or her being is remarkable. Nityananda was such a being--a mahatma of incredible, awesome yogic power and capacity.
The presence that was Nityananda had very little to do with his body and everything to do with the great spiritual force of which his body was merely a beacon. His body was simply a sign pointing to the deep and endless well of spiritual power. And such a well does not belong to any personality.
Americans do not think easily in these terms. Although we have seen many gurus in the past several decades, it is impossible for us to really fathom who or what Nityananda was because his state of being at no point corresponds to ordinary individual experience as Americans know it. Among the gurus who have been here, only a few were great beings, many were great showmen, and a few were charlatans. As a result, Americans question deeply both the nature of the guru and the need for one. We are unprepared for someone like Nityananda. Culturally, we have no precedents or criteria by which to classify a person whose very nature is detachment.
Nityananda had no purpose in the world and no message to bring. Why he appeared is unknown to anyone except perhaps himself. He was born to the austerity in which he lived his life. Simplicity and detachmnent were his essential nature--not something trained for or contemplated. His greatness was completely natural to him.
Yet detachment this complete is totally unfamiliar to us, even shocking. For example, people often brought him offerings of fruit, which, by week's end, might add up to tons of food. Often Nityananda just let it rot. It was not that he was stingy or did not want to give it away; in a way, he did not even notice that it was there. he was that disinterested in things external. All the fruit, flowers, and other gifts that appeared were like raindrops falling from the sky. It never occurrred to him to do anything with objects that manifested around him.
Most of us think that in order to pursue a spiritual life, we need something different from what we already know; a different idea, philosophy, or life-style. Nityananda made no such demands. He did not promote a particular lifestyle, philosophy, or perspective. He was not a teacher of any method and he did nothing to establish an organization around him. He never gave the required programs, intensives, workshops, or seminars assumed by modern-day mentalities, and he never asked for money. People came to him and he blessed them, he uplifted them, he gave them whatever they were able to take from him. It was just that simple and that free.
He brought tremendous peace and betterment to the simple people; the poor and the destitute were especially drawn to his simplicity and lack of judgment. As time went on, he touched the lives of countless people of all classes, showering miracles of healing and upliftment upon many. He sought no one's approval, recognition, or promotion for this. He lived in the jungle where people had to seek him out. Nityananda was a very simple man who dedicated his life to the presence of the Divine and who lived each day as a beacon of that presence.
To approach Nityananda, we must suspend all judgment. His words are profound and the subject is nothing less than the essence of Life itself.
*Note from M: We often think in terms of "being blessed" by a great Master, but it is not the act of a Self-realized being declaring "you are now blessed!" It does not work like that. One who is Self-realized is no different from the Absolute, he has realized God, is God in form. It is the act of merely being in the presence of such a being that bestows grace. Proximity to a Mahatma is a transforming experience, giving each person exactly what he or she is capable of handling or receiving. This is why we read that Nityananda's presence was considered "Divine Presence," for in the most literal and real sense one was standing in the presence of God. This presence naturally produces miracles in the lives of all he touches to this very day.
The Nature of the Absolute
This is Shiva-Shakti, the creative power of the indivisi-
ble One. And God's creative power is the Self, the One
reality. (Sutra 63)
The Absolute, the ultimate reality, the highest of all--this is pure consciousness. This pure dynamic consciousness is the basisand source of all manifestation, large and small. Many names have been given to this "ground of all": Shiva, Parashakti,
Parabrahma, Atman, the Self, God. It is the divine consciousness in all, the One consciousness. This ocean of pure potentialityhas two inseparable aspects: pure potential (Shiva) and pure energy (Shakti). Shakti is the supreme creative aspect of the Absolute, vital and dynamic. It is both completely stable and never still, the eternally pulsating sound and power of Om: the creative energy of Life, Omkar.
Within the sea of pure consciousness, this resonance causes movenent, waves, and ripples that intersect and mingle, rise and
break. All manifestation arises from the movement and interaction of forces precipitated by the resonance that is Omkar.
Omkar is th original word (paravac), the universal sound (shabda), the "Word" in the Gospel of St. John ("In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God." John 6:1) In the Rig Veda, one of the most ancient of Indian holy texts, Omkar is vac, creator and substance of all. Omkar is pulsating everywhere, always at the same time. It is form-less, completely open, pure potential.
Om vibrates like a storm in the sky. Having neither
beginning nor end, it is the stage manager of the Divine
Drama. The human body is a string of Om, all that is--
inside us, outside us--is born of Om. (Sutra 95)
Omkar--Shakti--is the very nature of the Absolute, or God. It is a living energy whose vibration gives rise to the whole
universe. Synonymous with the Om sound and pranava, Omkar is the all-pervasive universal mantra. This one dynamic impulse reverberates within itself giving rise to all experience--intellectual, volitional, emotional, and spiritual. Omkar is also called sat-chit-ananda, Being-Consciousness-Bliss. The Absolute simply is--an eternally stable, self-luminous, conscious force
continously and joyously manifesting its own awareness. Satchitananda.
The universe arises from sound. As do all things with
form, from sound, form arises. (Sutra 92)
Exactly how this vibrant, Self-aware, ever-pulsating ocean of pure consciousness manifests as our familiar material world is the subject of much scholarly debate. In general, all schema trace a hierarchical development beginning with the single Absolute that manifests in increasingly differentiated levels (Hence, the higher or more subtle worlds). Nityananda likewise sees the material world as the most differentiated and gross level. Because each successive level is contained within its more subtle predecessor, however, all things share certain basic elements that are the first and most subtle differentiations from the Absolute.
When the life-energy moves in an outward direction,
desires are born. There the mind follows, dividing and
subdividing into the two, four, and six-fold properties
of unconscious cosmic Nature and what we call "the
world" comes into being. (Sutra 70)
Nityananda spoke primarily of two sets of such elements. In the first are the five categories of earth, water, fire, air, and ether.
In the second set are the three primary gunas or constituent elements of cosmic Nature (prakriti: sattva, rajas, and tamas).
Sattva is pure light and perfect balance. Tamas, at the other end of the spectrum, embodies inertia, darkness, and total density. Between the two lies Rajas--passion, fire, dynamic activity.
All principles have a single root--the One Absolute,
Parabrahma. (Sutra 5)
Omkar is the essence of them all; the "power of doership" of the Absolute, the essence of life, of words and objects, of human
beings. Omkar is the heart of Atman, and Atman is central to the mystery of our essential nature--because Atman is the Self. In the sutras, a distinction is made between the individual Self (jivatman) and the divine Self (paramatman), a distinction that is only on the surface. The distinction is Maya. This does not mean that the world is an illusion. (Affter all, the power underlying
everything is real power.) Rather, Maya implies that nothing outside and nothing inside is as it appears. Individual selves are not really separate. Instead they are like waves on the ocean's surface, each different but still water--only water. Likewise, any extension of the supreme Self is not different from the supreme Self. Jivatman is supreme conscious energy expressed as an individuated person, paramatman is the Absolute, and they are both really the same thing. When Nityananda speaks of merging the Jivatman into the Paramatman, he is simply referring to the merging of ocean waves into water. Atman merging into Atman.
Nature of the Individual
Sound arises in the inner sky of pure consciousness, the heart-space in the head, the sky of the heart. What manifests is Life-Power, the One. (Sutra 37)
Each individual reflects the structure of the universe. Whatever Divine Consciousness manifests in the universe, individuated consciousness manifests in the form of the human body. Nityananda used the words Omkar or Shakti when discussing the vitality of the Absolute. As the energy moves out from the source, it becomes distinct but not separate from the source. And as the essence of the individual Jivatman, it is called kundalini.
Similarly, the life-force--Shakti, kundalini--is the same in all creatures, mobile and immobile. The sun and moon also are the same life-force. (Sutra 11)
Kundalini is the all-encompassing energy of life itself. In the individual human being, this single dynamic event manifests on three levels: biological, subtle or psychic, and purely spiritual. The energy of our biological existence is prana kundalini. The energy that supports the intellectual and emotional manifestations of our being is chitta-kundalini, the mind. The third aspect, para-kundalini, is the condensed manifestation of pure consciousness; it is the same as Shakti, the same as Omkar. These aspects relate to different stages or states of consciousness. While they each manifest differently, their essence is the same paramatman. Awareness of this essence is liberation.
Awaken the kundalini-shakti through the breath; for when it is roused, liberation is possible. (Sutra 20)
Prana-kundalini, or simply prana, is the driving force of our psycho-physical mechanism.
It is the breath within the breath, the "breath of life." Not the same as the physical breath, prana is more accurately called the link between the mental and the physical. Thus, mind (manas) plays an important role in the unfoldment and the expansion of the inner vision--because mind and breath are intimately related. The thoughts and feelings that arise and subside in the mind do so on the movement of this subtle breath of life. The practice of pranayama uses the mind to control prana while simultaneously using prana to control the mind.* The aim of this practice is to bring the flow of subtle energy into the awareness and control of the individual.
*What the author is telling us is that through controlled, slow breathing (pranayama), the mind becomes still. As the mind becomes still, the breathing is slower and deeper. These two aspects mutually support each other in a self feeding mechanism. All the aspirant has to do to put this into effect is to be aware of this and apply it, and with practice, it happens quite naturally. You will become still and unmoveable in all situations. It takes practice, but it is certainly acheivable and very simple to do.
The three primary channels through which conscious creative energy circulates in the subtle body are the ida, the pingala, and the sushumna. Sushumna is the seat of kundalini. (Sutra 85)
This flow of energy takes place within a structure that is sometimes called the subtle body, with prana corresponding to the subtle breath. In the sutras, Nityananda speaks of the three primary nerves or nadis: the ida, the pingala, and the sushumna.
They serve as channels in the subtle body for the flow of conscious energy and are arranged like the familiar medical symbol of the caduceus: a straight central channel (sushumna) flanked by two side channels (ida and pingala) that crisscross over the center like a loose braid. At each crossover point are centers called chakras.
The subtle is in the chakras. In the subtle channels is the kundalini shakti--together they are Om. Realize and know the subtle. (Sutra 47)
A chakra is a point in time and space where various flows of energy interact and create a resonance that is uniquely different from the resonance of the individual energies that originally combined to make it. >From these centers of vibration a human being's mental, emotional, and physical characteristics are determined and expressed.
Just as seven chakras begin with the muladhara at the base of the spine...(Sutra 18)
There are seven major chakras, each corresponding to an area in the physical body: the base of the spine, the base of the sex organs, the navel, the heart, the throat, a point between the eyebrows, and the top of the head. Kundalini energy is said to lie dormant in the muladhara, the chakra at the base of the spine; the nadis also originate in the muladhara. In addition to the muladhara, Nityananda specifically refers to the ajna chakra between the eyebrows* and the sahasrara chakra at the top of the head. The goal of yogic practice is to rouse the sleeping kundalini, allowing it to rise through the nadis and chakras, finally to merge with the Absolute in the sahasrara chakra.
*The Guru principle has its seat in the ajna chakra. Through the grace of the sadguru we reach the sahasrara chakra, the seat of liberation.
The seat of such discrimination is in the sky of the heart. When the kundalini rises to this place in the head, then the breath is single and the universe is in one's Self. All is in the Self...(Sutra 42)
The sahasrara chakra at the top of the head is the seat of Self-realization. It is the junction point between the individual and the Divine, that point in a human being wherein lies the dynamic stillness that is the union of Shiva and Shakti. It is only part of the psychobiological mechanism that is still, just as the hub of a wheel is still while the spokes and the rim move around it. It is the place from which all of the spiritual forces that make up a human being are extended, the place the breath comes from, the place the chakras come from, the place the physical body comes from.
The Self is there before you and it is there after you; even before you were born, there was creation. Only you are unaware. (Sutra 6)
A human being, then, is really an extension of a spiritual force. The dormant kundalini represents the furthest extension of that energy. As long as it is crystallized in this extension, the person is a limited being and sees things in terms of distinctions. When, through shaktipat, the kundalini begins to rise, this crystallization is loosened up. As the energy begins to flow again, it is reabsorbed into itself as the Divine.
When the individual spirit leads the inner Shiva-Shakti upward to the Brahmarandhra at the top of the head, the individual becomes one with the Indivisible. This is liberation, indivisible liberation. (Sutra 16)
Creation is nothing but energy released or projected from God. Entering back into it is dissolution. Identifying with the body is the cause of creation--as one sees it. Real dis- solution takes place when the individual Self merges and dissolves in the Universal. (Sutra 25)
For Nityananda, the sahasrara chakra is synonymous with the Brahmarandhra, the point of dynamic stillness that equals the union of Shiva and Shakti. When the individual creative energy, in the form of kundalini, is re-awakened and merged into that point through the various yogic practices, the individual consciousness dissolves into universal Consciousness. What manifests than is a complete state known as the divine inner Self. This is the state of universal consciousness and awareness of the Self as ths source of the whole universe.
Chidakasha and hridayakasha refer to the awareness that arises in the state of divine Consciousness. In that state we experience the inner as vast, maybe more vast than the whole external universe. hridayakasha means "heart-space;" the heart referred to is the essence or the heart of the whole universe. Chidakasha is consciousness-space, the sky of consciousness, or "the sky of the heart." The heart-space in the head, the sky of the heart, the Brahmarandhra--these all refer to the same experience of infinite expansiveness.
The source of liberation is Shiva. The linga in the head is Shiva. It is all Om. (Sutra 13)
This Brahmarandhra is also referred to in Nityanandna's sutras as the linga in the head, which is the symbol of Shiva. In Indian temples, the linga is a stone or metal object said to have a masculine quality, to be completely passive, and to contain the whole universe within itself. It arose as a symbol of Shiva because the linga in the head is the abode of Shiva--the source of all that is.
The Process of Liberation
Within a human being there is a vast reservoir of spiritual knowledge and pure capability, yet this great treasure is rarely tapped. Our involvement in the world and our entanglement in the struggle for survival limit our awareness to desires and their objects. Like a kaleidoscope, these desires are continuously changing form; the subtle images of shape and color never allow us to really grasp what we think we are seeing. Unless we recognize the kaleidoscope for the illusion it is, much unhappiness and frustration can result.
Return to the Self within and know your own secret! The universe is inside you and you are inside the universe. The inner Self is the One dancing in all...(Sutra 65)
The primary paradox of unity and diversity recurs at every level. While the process of liberation appears hierarchical at first glance, the orderly image of a ladder of ever-higher levels breaks down on close scrutiny. The process is really more like drawing a series of ever-expanding concentric circles. Jiva is in the center and the Absolute is in the outermost circle as well as the paper on which it lies and the pen with which it is drawn. This is a paradox that cannot be neatly resolved through language. Only by continuous and deep contemplation can the nature of this paradox be penetrated and encompassed. What follows is called liberation.
Sound arises in the inner sky of pure consciousness, the heart-space in the head, the sky of the heart. What manifests is Life-Power, the One. (Sutra 37)
Nityananda addressed this paradox indirectly through the image of the heart-space in the head, the chidakash, the sky of the heart. This verbal image brings together what is "above" and what is "below" with intuitive clarity; in the sky of consciousness, there is no duality and no paradox. The question then is how to reach this center.
Nityananda directs the seeker to "the royal road."
A true guru can turn you from the jungle road of ignorance to the royal road of spiritual knowledge. (Sutra 102)
But without the Guru, you cannot reach the goal. (Sutra 9)
The paradox is repeated in the form of the guru, because the guru has two aspects.
Nityananda called these the primary (or action) guru and the secondary (or causal) guru. On the one hand, there is the physical teacher. This is personality to be dealt with and talked to, a person who performs actions that have an effect in the world, a person viewed by some with admiration and by others with disgust; in other words, someone viewed by ordinary people as the same or less than they are. On the other hand, for the few people who are able to, or care to, look deeply into the situation, what is really there is not a personality but an extraordinary field of spiritual energy from which they can draw nourishment for their innermost being. With this nourshment, they can attain complete maturity in the supreme state of pure consciousness.
The secondary guru leads you to the well--the primary guru drinks from it. (Sutra 104)
The physical aspect of the guru, the secondary teacher, serves as a doorway. Through our diligence, love and devotion we pass through this doorway of the physical teacher into the level of consciousness that Nityananda calles the action guru. The action guru is the same as Parabrahma, Paramashiva, or chidakasha. At this level, we express the infinite spaciousness, extraordinary power, and creative intelligence that are characteristics of the essential state of unity from which all experience takes its form.
Liberation does no come serching for you. You must make the effort to seek it. (Sutra 117)
The effort required if you sincerely seek God is to see through the form, to pass beyond the personality, the individuality, and the eccentricity of the teacher, and in so doing to transcend your own personality and limitations.
Draw the breath up to the Brahmarandhra at the top of the head. Kindle the fire, purify the subtle channels, burn up the impurities. This is the yoga-fire of deliber- ation...The pure energy of the Supreme. (Sutra 28)
The power inherent in the presence of the guru energizes every level of a human being.
The transmission of this power is shaktipat, the transmission or descent of Grace. Shaktipat brings about a quantum leap in awareness that puts us in contact with the innate freedom and spontaneous creative power that is eternally and everywhere present as the source of all. It awakens the deepest potentiality within us, and the kundalini shakti begins its extraordinary unfoldment. As this unfoldment continues, the entire structure of the human being is refined and purifies. When subjected to fire, iron is freed of its gross crystallization and impurities and reorganized as the finer, stronger metal of steel. The human being also, through contact with the forge of the guru, becomes purified by the inner fire of kundalini and is established in the supreme state of awareness. Seeing past the form of the physical teacher brings awareness of the power that is functioning as and through the teacher. And stilling the mind in the flow of the power is liberation.
First silence the mind and establish it in the Self. Then concentrate deeply with spiritual discernment. (Sutra 179)
When the various waves of creative energy that form the mind are stilled and become like the surface of a calm lake, our awareness can penetrate our own depth and recognize the complete oneness of our individual Self and the Divine. Deep contact or connection with a guru enables us to feel so deeply secure and calm that we can begin to turn within and observe the workings of our inner universe without the doubts, fears, and tensions that continuously draw the mind of the ordinary person back into the realm of dualistic awareness.
Mind is the root of bondage and liberation, of good and evil, of sin and holiness. (Sutra 71)
The mind is both the entity to be stilled and the means of stilling it, for the nature of the mind is complex. Nityananda used many different terms to distinguish its facets. The major distinction is between manas and buddhi. Manas is the ordinary limited mind and buddhi is the higher mind, the one capable of subtle discrimination and spiritual discernment. In some classical Indian systems, the word chitta denotes the whole mental apparatus composed of three parts: manas (the perceiving mind), buddhi (the discriminating mind), and the ego (I-consciousness). Nityananda used "body-idea"
and "body-consciousness" synonymously with "I-consciousness." Although simple thoughts, feelings, and desires arise in the mind, the mind is also capable of realizing jnana and truth. Jnana (pronounced jnyana) is the highest wisdom, the wisdom of the jnani, one who has realized the Self. Here again is a paradox, for the wisest person has transcended the mind and its desires. "A jnani has no mind," says Nityananda.
Without a pure mind, how can you develop equal vision? Without practice, how can you develop balance?
Through practice, the subtle intelligence develops and the desire for objects disappears. (Sutra 141)
As our understanding expands and we begin to see beyond the "body-idea" and beyond the limits of ordinary mind, a sense of detachment also grows. Detachment, desirelessness, and perfect dispassion for worldliness (what Nityananda called vairagya) are necessary requirements for the seeker. The Sanskrit word sannyasi means "renunciate," literally "one who has cast away."
However, renunciation is a subtle concept. It is not objects that we must renounce, but our desire for objects; not actions, but our attachment to the results of those actions. True renunciation is not of things but of the desire for things. Vairagya is the attitude leading to a state of understanding in which the true nature of objects is known.
Consequently, these objects no longer have any power over a person.
No need to strive for anything. When the mind chases desires, one must strive to attain one-pointedness. Concentrate the mind in the higher mind...(Sutra 80)
Meditation is an integral part of sadhana. Nityananda spoke of meditation as a focused concentration, the merging of mind into wisdom, the look within. The goal is bringing the mind to perfects one-pointedness; achieving this goal tests all the faculties of the seeker. The mind must be stilled and drawn away from desire; the breath must be harmonious and ultimately become single; the awareness must reach inside to come in touch with and observe the action of the kundalini shakti.
Like milk being boiled, the vital breath in the sushumna channel is heated by intense faith and discrimination and led toward the sahasrara chakra, the still point at the top of the head. As the kundalini power crosses each subtle energy center, properties of the energy that evolves as the world changes. (Sutra 21)
Then, as a natural result of the awakening of the inner transforming power, the kundalini shakti rises through the chakras to join and merge into the heart-space, the Brahmarandhra. The love and happiness that then arise within us dissove all the various tensions and superficial desires and satisfy our deepest needs. With a full heart, the mind can become still and one-pointed on the power of the Divine Presence. This is the merging of the individual into the universal and transcendent that Nityananda consistently called the most important purpose of our presence on this earth. To merge heart to heart and spirit to spirit with the guru in the field of supreme Shiva-Shakti frees a human being from all mechanistic thinking and from the bonds of cause and effect. This is the union of the individual and the Divine.
Fulfillment is possible only when you merge with this pure heart. There all idea of "you" and "I" disappears.
In the sky of the heart is liberation, love, and devotion.
Liberation is the clear, luminous recognition that our mind, emotions, and physical body are nothing more than extensions of the supreme Mantra of God* that pulsates silently everywhere and always at once.
Everywhere we look, inside and outside, we experience nothing but the extraordinary clarity, beauty, and the power of the supreme Self. It is eternally pulsating, creating, absorbing, and manifesting yet again--ourselves, the world, all that is. This is simply the fundamental expression of its absolute freedom to do whatever it wants, and expression of its supreme freedom and its incredible joy. Satchidananda!
In all places and in every age, there are many good people who seek spirituality, who have spiritual understanding, and who have some positive concerns for humanity. Yet in any age there are only a few people, rare and great beings indeed, who can communicate the highest transcendent state of consciousness to other human beings and who dwell in that state while still functioning in this world as ordinary--and possibly eccentric--human beings.
Nityananda was such a rare and gifted being. And because he spoke from a state of complete Self-awareness, his spiritual presence flows through his words. By becoming aware of the ongoing pulsation and remaining aware of it every day, the mind itself becomes a mantra. Whatever is spoken in that state is sacred, pure, and uplifting.
In that state, the sounds that come and the way they are articulated and joined to form images is something mysterious and magical, a manifestation of the freedom of our innate, pure consciousness. Nityananda's words came from that state. They inspire us to open our minds and hearts to the extraordinary creative energy that permeates our lives, and to experience, recognize, and appreciate the miracles that happen to us.
Nityananda always said, "When the disciple calls with love, I am there." For people who are willing to open their eyes and hearts, Nityananda is a symbol of the enduring, ever present power of the Divine in the world. This dynamic spiritual presence has the power to transform lives, to relieve suffering, to grant freedom from poverty and disease, and most importantly, from hard-heartedness. When you are filled with this power, then even in the most simple circumstances of life becomes an experience of complete fulfillment and happiness. Our lives become an act of service expressed in a state of detachment. As we begin directing our lives toward the recognition of that supreme creative power that is our essence, then we speak, think, and act from that power. Our lives are in perfect harmony, perfect balance, perfect union with the power of Life.
Nityananda felt that such a life of perfect union was possible for everyone. This is perhaps what impresses me most about these sutras--the simple and total availability of that supreme state to anyone who sincerely seeks it. The goal of Nityananda's teaching, and the single most important thing each of us can do with our lives, is to recognize the creative power within us and dissolve the mind into it. It is clear from these sutras that for Nityananda, this supreme, highest state is neither the privilege of special birth nor the exclusive property of some special class of beings. It is available to everyone. The simple purity, the joy, and the extraordinary communion with the Divine that are the outstanding characteristics of Nityananda's life and presence are accessible to everyone: to me and to you.
Thousands of people, sometimes tens of thousands in a day, had the opportunity to experience and participate in the Divine presence that was Nityananda. yet how many people took away something great and enduring from it? Not nearly as many as were there. But Nityananda made it accessible to everyone--there were no barriers.
Thus, it is up to each of us. Through our devotion, love, and diligence, we can grow in our understanding of the simple and perfectly full state that is the field of our individual life and the field of all experience.
The greatest treasure in the whole world is hidden inside each of us. And while we may never be successful in the worldly sense, this treasure we can difinitely find. Seeking that treasure is a good thing--but finding it is better.
It is up to you.