Enlightened Sensory Interaction
December 17, 2013 Comments Off on Enlightened Sensory Interaction
It is true that we have the senses, which are susceptible to the allurements of objects. With these senses alone one can interact with the world and the objects around. It is the senses, which bring the knowledge about the objects and their mutual relationships, usefulness and the like. In fact, the very knowledge process is based upon our external perceptions. All the words that we have evolved, together with the ideas they convey, are derived from the object sphere alone. Sensory interactions with the object sphere alone make this possible.
But these interactions with the resultant knowledge should become a vital part in shaping our values and ideals in the manner in which Krishna discusses them. Rather than getting blinded by the thrills and delights of the senses, the interactional experiences must form the basis for deeper thinking and evaluation. In the name of sensory delights and thrills, no infatuation or lack of timely restraint and moderation should be allowed. For this, proper viveka (discrimination) should be fostered right beforehand. Or else, human life will merely descend to the level of animals.
In employing the senses for whatever purposes they are meant, neither the dignity of human life, as envisaged by Nature or the Creator, nor its wholesome purpose, should be led to degenerate. With the feeling heart and the knowing intelligence, we should not lack in preserving our timely wisdom. With adequate caution and safeguards, we should avoid undue pitfalls or degeneration.
Remember: Unlike animals, mankind has sovereign access to the inner horizon, the sphere of Consciousness. This inner sphere is far greater and more profound than the external counterpart surrounding the senses. The Subject consciousness, by dint of which alone the endless world of objects is perceived and interacted with, is always the Supreme. It is the majesty and magnificence of the Subject that enables and empowers the objective variety and endlessness. When Krishna, right in the beginning (second chapter), exposed Arjuna to the Immortal Soul in contrast to the mortal body, he was in fact leading Arjuna to grasp the inward magnitude and potential of man!
To be blinded by what the senses see, is to neglect this superior inward potential accessible to us. External allurements, if not checked and sublimated, will surely drive man to pitiable degeneration and doom. History has recorded the extinction of some great civilizations in the hands of moral, ethical and spiritual decay. Lack of spiritual insight, and the restraints and moderation such insight dictates, have alone been the cause of such downfall. If and when people fail to heed the message of inner life and its compulsions, the fate cannot but be the woeful attempt to climb two feet only to slip down by twenty. That is why Krishna, through his yajna enunciation and the warnings following it, gives us the necessary forethought and resolve.
The only right course is to employ the senses (as mentioned in verse 3.7) with sufficient regulation and moderation. If this is ensured, life will get enriched every time. In fact, the whole of our personality – consisting of the senses, mind, intelligence and ego – will become beautifully integrated if it becomes oriented and empowered by spiritual wisdom and strength. Like friction helping motion, every part of our personality will help and strengthen us consistently. – Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha [Excerpt from the book “Essential Concepts in Bhagavadgeeta – Vol 2” by Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha.](c) Narayanashrama Tapovanam, 2012