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Why are Sadhus and Sannyasins enjoined upon to beg for their food?

Don’t the sins and evil intentions of the giver of food get mixed up with his charity and thus spoil the mental peace of the Sadhus and Sannyasins by their contaminating influence?

A true Sadhu or a genuine Sannyasin is he who has no attachment to the world even in
the slightest degree. Such Sadhus are Brahma-Nishtha Purushas (persons in the constant thought
of the Divine or Brahman) unmindful of their bare needs even. They should not cook for
themselves. Self-cooking induces in any person a desire to prepare this dish or that, to relish this
sweet dainty or that. It causes Jihva Chapalya (unsteadiness of the tongue). The aim of all
Sadhanas being to control the mind, for which control of the tongue is the best means, selfcooking
is prohibited to the Sadhu and the Sannyasin; and in lieu thereof, begging, just to fill up
the belly moderately, is allowed. So, begging is no sin for a Sadhu and a Sannyasin.
The fire of Tapas consequent upon Japa, Pranayam, Svadhyaya of the Bhagavata and the
like burns all impurities that are likely to affect the God-intoxicated when they take food from illevolved
and undeveloped souls - be they Brahmins or Pariahs.

From "May I answer that" by Swami Sivananda (1987-1963). More Informations on Swami Sivananda: on the Website of Divine Life Society, Photographs of Swami Sivananda, German Pages on Swami Sivananda

Views: 161

Tags: Inspiration, Sivananda, Swami, daily

Comment by Ajith on November 17, 2009 at 9:23pm
Apart from the reasons mentioned above one reason why Sadhus and Sanyasins beg for food is to kill their ego.

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