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

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Moksha – The way to achieve it

September 10, 2013 Comments Off on Moksha – The way to achieve it

Moksha literally means liberation, freedom or redemption. The Soul does not need liberation at all! It is unborn, undying and nonacting. Liberation is therefore verily for the mind and intelligence. Many shackles and constrictions victimize the mind, and doubts and ignorance shroud the intelligence. These have to be shed, removed and resolved. When properly treated, the same mind will become radiant, delightful and serene.

Endless world encircles you. It is imposing in every way. But the truth is that the whole world-display is an outcome, your wakefulness brings about, by itself, of itself. Any time for the world to be manifest, you have to be awake, wakeful. Subsequent to wakefulness alone world perception can transpire. When the mind is active, the objects also prevail, with their qualities and effects. If the same mind becomes weak and exhausted, the world also withers off – as in sleep. The seeker has to get established in this experiential truth. The entire objectude is a result and outcome the mind brings about. Mind is not encased in the body. The body is held by the mind. The seeker has to get to this truth, and gain stability in it.

Bondage is but the effect of desires and latent tendencies lying coiled up in the mind. Freedom from these is liberation. To gain liberation, desires have to be attenuated. Throughout our life, it is the mind that holds on to everything including the body, relatives, house and family. This undue hold of the mind is to be dropped.

Yes, possessiveness is the binding factor, and that is the one to be abandoned. For this, right understanding, viveka, alone is the means. When the mind leaves its undue delusion completely, what survives is the Self, the aatmaa.

What is the way for it?

The mind alone gives the world excessive credibility and leads itself with infatuation. As it now thinks of and empowers the world to delude it, let the mind contemplate on the supreme Truth, the singular Self, and dissolve the very same world.

It is the perception of plurality that instils and preserves multiple desires. The singular Self, when contemplated upon consistently, will likewise result in desirefreeness. When this happens, all agitation and torment will cease completely.

Self is nearer the mind than the body and the outer world. Self is mind itself purified. The world is but a reflection on Consciousness. Such a reflectional state is called the mind. When this truth is understood, agitating effects caused by world perception will disappear. Making the mind pure, cultivating sattva, live and move in the world sportfully. Become a great performer, enjoyer, sufferer and experiencer, as Rama did. Be interactional, but remain unruffled. The key to this inner mastery lies in spiritual introspection, vichaara. Ruminate upon the Self, Consciousness, understanding everything as its display.

In everyone lies the potential to employ the mind and intelligence, and take up spiritual introspection. None should plead inability in this at all.

Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru. – Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha
[An excerpt from Poojya Swamiji’s notes prepared for Gurupoornima retreat that were published in the Oct. 2008 issue of Vicharasethu.]
(c) Narayanashrama Tapovanam, 2012

Self-pity is the cause of all life’s grievances.

September 5, 2013 Comments Off on Self-pity is the cause of all life’s grievances.

Self-pity is the cause of all life’s grievances.

Bowl of Saki, September 2, by Hazrat Inayat Khan

Commentary by Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan:

If one studies one’s surroundings one finds that those who are happy are so because they have less thought of self. If they are unhappy it is because they think of themselves too much. A person is more bearable when he thinks less of himself. And a person is unbearable when he is always thinking of himself. There are many miseries in life, but the greatest misery is self-pity.

from  http://wahiduddin.net/mv2/IV/IV_29.htm

Self-pity is the worst poverty. When a person says, ‘I am…’ with pity, before he has said anything more he has diminished himself to half of what he is; and what is said further, diminishes him totally; nothing more of him is left afterwards. There is so much in the world that we can pity and which it would be right for us to take pity upon, but if we have no time free from our own self we cannot give our mind to others in the world. Life is one long journey, and the further behind we have left our self, the further we have progressed toward the goal. Verily when the false self is lost the true self is discovered.

from  http://wahiduddin.net/mv2/III/III_III_1.htm

The heart becomes wide by forgetting self, but narrow by thinking of the self and pitying one’s self. To gain a wide and broad heart you must have something before you to look upon, and to rest your intelligence upon — and that something is the God-ideal.

~~~ “Supplementary Papers, Mysticism V”, by Hazrat Inayat Khan (unpublished)

Narrowness is primitiveness

August 19, 2013 Comments Off on Narrowness is primitiveness

Narrowness is primitiveness; it is the breadth of heart that proves evolution.

Bowl of Saki, August 10, by Hazrat Inayat Khan

Commentary by Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan:

One person will do something and consider that there is great wisdom in his sacrifice, while another who is not evolved enough to understand it will say, ‘How very foolish!’ Remember therefore that not only to the wise person the man of little sense seems foolish, but even to the foolish person the wise one seems foolish. The points of view of both are different: one looks from the top of the tower, the other standing on the ground. So there is a vast difference in the range of their sight.

It is a man’s outlook on life which makes him broad or narrow, and it is the grade of his evolution which gives man the illumination of sacrifice. What a man was not inclined to do last year, he may be inclined to do this year; the sacrifice one could not make yesterday, one can make today, for the rate of speed of man’s evolution cannot be limited to a particular standard. A broad outlook enriches man and a high point of view ennobles the soul.

from  http://wahiduddin.net/mv2/VIII/VIII_2_23.htm

Once you have linked yourself with love, a flood of inspiration is revealed to you, whatever the subject, whatever the problem in life may be. Whatever it be that your eye casts its glance upon, it will disclose itself. Then you are on the real road, and what a joy this is!

Breadth of heart is what is needed for all this. … It is the breadth of heart that makes a man great, whereas it is narrowness of heart that makes him small. The great heart does not think about how troublesome a person is, and why he should be bothered like this. It is only the narrow of heart that thinks, ‘I will cause him some trouble.’ It may be justified, but still it is a narrow thought. The one with a broad heart thinks,’ This is a small thing, I can put up with it; not much harm will come from it.’

The Nizam wrote this verse, ‘The width of the land and the water cannot be compared with the width of man’s heart. If man’s heart is wide enough there is nothing greater than that.’ The heart becomes wide by forgetting the self, and narrow by thinking of the self and by pitying one’s self. To gain a wide and broad heart you must have something before you to look upon and to rest your intelligence upon, and that something is the God ideal. This is the prescription for killing the self, and to kill the self is the basis of every religion.

from  http://wahiduddin.net/mv2/XII/XII_I_16.htm

~~~  Narrowness is primitiveness; it is the breadth of heart that proves evolution.

Bowl of Saki, August 10, by Hazrat Inayat Khan

Commentary by Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan:

One person will do something and consider that there is great wisdom in his sacrifice, while another who is not evolved enough to understand it will say, ‘How very foolish!’ Remember therefore that not only to the wise person the man of little sense seems foolish, but even to the foolish person the wise one seems foolish. The points of view of both are different: one looks from the top of the tower, the other standing on the ground. So there is a vast difference in the range of their sight.

It is a man’s outlook on life which makes him broad or narrow, and it is the grade of his evolution which gives man the illumination of sacrifice. What a man was not inclined to do last year, he may be inclined to do this year; the sacrifice one could not make yesterday, one can make today, for the rate of speed of man’s evolution cannot be limited to a particular standard. A broad outlook enriches man and a high point of view ennobles the soul.

from  http://wahiduddin.net/mv2/VIII/VIII_2_23.htm

Once you have linked yourself with love, a flood of inspiration is revealed to you, whatever the subject, whatever the problem in life may be. Whatever it be that your eye casts its glance upon, it will disclose itself. Then you are on the real road, and what a joy this is!

Breadth of heart is what is needed for all this. … It is the breadth of heart that makes a man great, whereas it is narrowness of heart that makes him small. The great heart does not think about how troublesome a person is, and why he should be bothered like this. It is only the narrow of heart that thinks, ‘I will cause him some trouble.’ It may be justified, but still it is a narrow thought. The one with a broad heart thinks,’ This is a small thing, I can put up with it; not much harm will come from it.’

The Nizam wrote this verse, ‘The width of the land and the water cannot be compared with the width of man’s heart. If man’s heart is wide enough there is nothing greater than that.’ The heart becomes wide by forgetting the self, and narrow by thinking of the self and by pitying one’s self. To gain a wide and broad heart you must have something before you to look upon and to rest your intelligence upon, and that something is the God ideal. This is the prescription for killing the self, and to kill the self is the basis of every religion.

from  http://wahiduddin.net/mv2/XII/XII_I_16.htm

DEPRESSION AND DEVOTION

July 28, 2013 Comments Off on DEPRESSION AND DEVOTION

Every aspirant in the spiritual path becomes a victim to the mood of depression in the beginning. You have to overcome this mood through discrimination, reflection, singing God’s name, prayer, etc. This mood is like a passing cloud. It will pass off if you are vigilant. Do not mistake emotion for devotion.

Whenever you get into a mood of depression, sing God’s name vigorously; sitting alone in your room, sing with a melting heart. You may sing silently if you wish. This is an easy way to drive away this undesirable mood.

Try to control all wild outbursts of weeping. This is a weakness, a negative state. But do allow the pearl drops of divine love or ecstasy to trickle down your face occasionally, when you are in a profoundly prayerful or meditative mood.

Shed the tears of pure, divine love when you are alone, when you are in communion with the Lord. Do not weep in the presence of others. The rare pearl-drops of divine love are the outcome of the melting of the heart by the fire of devotion and the fire of painful separation from the Lord.

Sometimes a man feigns to be a devotee. He sheds false tears to make his neighbours think he is a great devotee. On account of sympathetic action, his neighbours also begin to weep – but there will not be one iota of devotion in their hearts.

Devotion is a very rare gift from God. Weeping itself is not a criterion by which to judge the devotional nature of a man or a woman. Do not mistake the crocodile tears of a hypocrite bhakta (devotee) for the genuine pearl drops of divine love which inspire and elevate bystanders. One may not weep outwardly and yet he may be a genuine, silent devotee.

Identify yourself with the emotionless state or Brahman, and rest peacefully for ever.
Satvic (peaceful) emotion is quiet. Rajasic (passionate) emotion is terrible. Tamasic (dull) emotion is confused. Rajasic and tamasic emotions are of a turbid nature and therefore cannot receive a reflection of the blissful nature of Atman. Rajasic and tamasic emotions present a reflection of intelligence but not of bliss. Satvic emotions present a reflection of both blissfulness and intelligence.
– Swami Sivananda

Such Is The Mind

June 10, 2013 Comments Off on Such Is The Mind

 

There is no limit to the power of the human mind. The more concentrated it is, the more power is brought to bear on one point. You are born to concentrate the mind on God after collecting the mental rays that are dissipated on various objects. That is your important duty. You forget the duty on account of moha (attachment) to the family, children, name and fame, money, power and position.

Mind is compared to quicksilver, because its rays are scattered over various objects. It is compared to a monkey, because it jumps from one object to another. It is compared to moving air, because it is restless. It is compared to a furious elephant, because of its passionate impetuosity.

Mind is known by the name `great bird’, because it jumps from one object to another just as a bird jumps from one twig to another, from one tree to another. Raja yoga teaches us how to concentrate the mind and then how to ransack the innermost recess of our mind.

Concentration is opposed to sensuous desires, as is bliss to flurry and worry, sustained thinking to perplexity, applied thinking to sloth and torpor, rapture to ill-will.

So long as the thoughts of one are not thoroughly destroyed through persistent practice, he should ever be concentrating his mind on one truth at a time. Through such unremitting practice, one-pointedness of the mind will accrue and instantly all the hosts of thoughts will vanish.

To remove this tossing of the mind and various obstacles which stand in the way of one-pointedness of the mind, the practice of concentration on one thing alone should be made.

The more the mind is fixed on God, the more strength you will acquire. More concentration means more energy. Concentration opens the inner chambers of love or the realm of eternity. Concentration is a source of spiritual strength.

Fix the mind on the Atman. Fix the mind on the all-pervading pure intelligence and self-luminous effulgence. Stand firm in Brahman. Then you will become `Brahma-Samastha’ (established in Brahman). – Swami Sivananda

Simply Seeing

June 8, 2013 Comments Off on Simply Seeing

Confusion is a great opportunity. The problem with people who are not confused is great – they think they know, and they know not. The people who believe that they have clarity are really in great trouble; their clarity is very superficial. In fact they know nothing of clarity; what they call clarity is just stupidity.

Idiots are very very clear – clear in the sense that they do not have the intelligence to feel confusion.

To feel confusion needs great intelligence.

Only the intelligent ones feel confusion; otherwise the mediocre go on moving in life, smiling, laughing, accumulating money, struggling for more power and fame. If you see them you will feel a little jealous; they look so confident, they even look happy.

If they are succeeding, if their money is increasing and their power is increasing and their fame is growing, you will feel a little jealous. You are so confused and they are so clear about their life; they have a direction, they have a goal, they know how to attain it, and they are managing, they are already achieving, they are climbing the ladder. And you are just standing there, confused about what to do, what not to do, what is right and what is wrong. But this has always been so; the mediocre remains certain. It is only for the more intelligent to feel confusion, chaos.

Confusion is a great opportunity. It simply says that through the mind there is no way. If you are really confused you are blessed. Now something is possible, something immensely valuable; you are on the verge. If you are utterly confused, that means the mind has failed; now the mind can no longer supply any certainty to you.

You are coming closer and closer to the death of the mind. And that is the greatest thing that can happen to any man in life, the greatest blessing – because once you see that the mind is confusion and there is no way out through the mind, how long can you go on clinging to the mind? Sooner or later you will have to drop it; even if you don’t drop it, it will drop of its own accord. Confusion will become so much, so heavy, that out of sheer heaviness it will drop. And when the mind drops, confusion disappears.

I cannot say that you attain to certainty, no, because that too is a word applicable only to the mind and the world of the mind. When there is confusion, there can be certainty; when confusion disappears, certainty also disappears.

You simply are – clear, neither confused nor certain, just a clarity, a transparency. And that transparency has beauty, that transparency is grace, it is exquisite.

It is the most beautiful moment in one’s life when there is neither confusion nor certainty. One simply is, a mirror reflecting that which is, with no direction, going nowhere, with no idea of doing something, with no future, just utterly in the moment, tremendously in the moment.

When there is no mind there can be no future, there can be no program for the future. Then this moment is all, all in all; this moment is your whole existence. The whole existence starts converging on this moment, and the moment becomes tremendously significant. It has depth, it has height, it has mystery, it has intensity, it has fire, it has immediacy, it grips you, it possesses you, it transforms you.

But I cannot give you certainty; certainty is given by ideology. Certainty is nothing but patching up your confusion. You are confused. Somebody says, “Don’t be worried,” and says it very authoritatively, convinces you with arguments, with scriptures, and patches up your confusion, covers it with a beautiful blanket – with the Bible, with the Koran, with the Gita. You feel good but it is temporary, because the confusion is boiling within. You have not got rid of it, it has only been repressed.

The intelligent person hesitates, ponders, wavers. The unintelligent never wavers, never hesitates. Where the wise will whisper, the fool simply declares from the housetops.

Lao Tzu says, “I may be the only muddle-headed man in the world. Everybody seems to be so certain, except me.” He is right; he has such tremendous intelligence that he cannot be certain about anything.

I cannot promise you certainty if you drop the mind. I can promise you only one thing, that you will be clear. There will be clarity, transparency, you will be able to see things as they are.
Osho, The Book of Wisdom, Talk #4
Copyright © 2013 Osho International Foundation

 

 

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