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The ‘D’ word definitely sends out a chill. But it is certainly not referring to any underworld group here. I mean by the word ‘D’, the devotion or devotee (an individual who seeks something) and the ‘company’ referring to the context of association or assimilation. In simple words the much-complicated concept of “Sath Sangha”.
Now, as far as I analyze, if one has to understand the meaning of “Sath Sangha”, one must know what is meant by “Sath”. The word meaning of “Sath” can be construed as Entity or existence; Essence; That which really is; Which exists; True being or really existent; That which is good, real or true; Truly being; As anyone or anything ought to be, etc. It also refers to the meaning of being a “good man”, “sage”, “respectable or honest person” etc.
Therefore, the essence of the word meaning of “Sath” is the stage in which a person feels within himself in his own real content or “as he is” or “as he ought to be” without any shade of affliction of artificiality. Moreover, this has to be sought after by a person and thereby he is entitled to be called a devotee, meaning thereby devoted in the pursuance of achieving the concept of something or the other, than what he considers himself to be otherwise.
Now, carrying the concept a little further, the human mind being what it is, there is no point of being in that state of oneness with the “real content” as in a touch and go situation. One has to constantly be in that state of the situation in continuity in all circumstances and influences. Here comes the importance of the word “Sangha”. The word meaning of “Sangha” can be considered as follows: Company; Confluence; Joining; Union; Association; Assembly; Addiction or devotion to etc.
In the normal parlance, when the word “Sath Sangha” is used, one immediately thinks of a group of people sitting together and praying. This, of course, is one of the concepts, but the meaning and content that it carries are much further. An individual being has to be “devoted” to the understanding of the state of “his own real natural being”. Thus, the concept of devotion carries much farther away from a limited group, personalized Gods and selective principles of devotion.
The “Sangha” means to be in a constant state of mind or in the company of that concept of “his own real natural being”. Therefore, it goes beyond the situation in which few people assemble for certain times and recite mechanically certain prayers or songs and call themselves “Sath Sanghis”. The assembly in the form of “Sath Sangh” is, therefore, only a platform to elevate the human mind to a higher level of understanding the assimilation (“Sangha”) of one with the concept of the original state of being (“Sath”). If this does not take place, any activity called “Sath Sangha” is only an assembly of people and nothing beyond that.
Ultimately, the person who claims to be a “Sath Sanghi” has to be much above the divisive dogmas. He shall have to be a person of absolutely pure character and be in his own natural state of being at all times and at all situations. Identifying oneself with one group or the other in itself is a negation of the very concept of “Sath Sangh”, as this concept is a totality and does not see any separateness in any being as it is considered that the God is omnipresent and hence in each and every being. The source is one while the diversities are many. Again, the level of achievement depends upon the intellectual and mental caliber of the person. It is not necessary that this has to be developed through group sitting. There are persons who are “Sath Sanghis” even at their prime age in a natural way. So, age is also not a criterion.
At this stage, one more thought crosses over my mind. That is, Are other beings around us not in their original state of being? I am referring to creatures other than humans. Yes, they are all in their own original state. But, they do not have the analytical capacity of the mind which the humans have. By sharpening the thinking, humans can achieve great strides of development, as against the other beings. While all other beings “exist” at their own levels, the humans can go beyond the “existential level” and be with the very source of existence in a conscious manner, elevating themselves to be better beings.