Attributes of a steady minded sage, by Shri Mrityunjayanand

Discussion in 'Srimad Bhagavad Gita' started by Speechless world, Dec 27, 2015.

  1. Speechless world

    Speechless world New Member

    The Bhagwad Geeta is a seed scripture for all of mankind, as Sri Krishn has preached to Arjun about almost all the necessities needed for a seeker traveling on the path of true spiritualism. A few of the questions have been raised by Arjun himself to get his doubts clarified and almost all the remaining important factors are projected by Sri Krishn and answered in full length by him with metaphysical details for obtaining true knowledge. With a doubt in his mind, Arjun has asked Sri Krishn to let him know about the markof the man who has attained the state of true meditation and equanimity of mind; how does such man with firm discrimination speak, sit, and walk? We will discuss these same questions in detail as preached by Sri Krishn in Bhagwad Geeta.

    That Soul which has resolved his doubts is in the state of Samadhi or perfect absorption of thought in the Supreme Spirit, the one worthy object of meditation. One who has achieved even-minded discrimination by identification with the eternal essence, which has neither a beginning nor an end, is said to be in the state of abstract contemplation of the nature of the Supreme Spirit. Arjun asked Sri Krishn for the qualities of the person with a mind of equanimity engaged in such contemplation. How does a man with steadfast wisdom speak? How does he sit? What is his gait? Arjun has thus asked four questions.

    Answering his questions, Sri Krishn preaches to Arjun that a person is then said to be steadfast in mind when he has renounced all the desires of his mind and achieved contentment of the Self through the Self. When a man has renounced all his desires and achieved his Soul’s contentment through the contemplation of his Soul, he is said to be a man of firm discernment. This Self is apprehended only through complete abandonment of passion. The sage who has viewed the ineffable beauty of his Self and found perfect satisfaction in him is the man with a steady judgement.

    Sri Krishn adds that he is indeed a steady-minded sage who is unmoved by sorrow and indifferent to happiness, and who has overcome his passion, fear and anger. He whose mind is untroubled by bodily, accidental, and worldly sorrows, and who has rid himself of desire for physical pleasures, and whose passions, fear, and anger have been subdued, is the sage with discrimination who has achieved the culmination of spiritual disciplines. Sri Krishn then points out other qualities of this saintly man.

    He says further that such man has a steady mind who is entirely free from attachment and who neither gloats over success nor abhors failure. That man has a firm wisdom who is totally free from infatuation and who neither welcomes good fortune nor repudiates misfortune. That alone is auspicious which draws a Soul to the being of God, whereas that which pulls the mind to temptations of the material world is inauspicious. The man of discrimination is not too happy in favourable circumstances and he also does not scorn adversities, because neither is the object which is fit for attainment different from him nor is there for him any evil that may sully the purity of his mind. That is to say that he has now no need for further striving.

    Sri Krishn adds that as a turtle pulls in its limbs, this man reins in his senses from all objects, and then he truly has a steady mind. When a man pulls back his senses from all sides and restrains them within his mind like a turtle pulling its head and feet within its shell, his mind is steady. But it is only an analogy. As soon as the turtle knows that the danger is gone, it again expands its limbs. Does a man of steadfast wisdom also, in the same way, let his senses loose after restraining them, and resume enjoyment of worldly pleasures?

    Sri Krishn says that while objects of sensual pleasure cease to be for the man who withdraws his senses from them, his desire for these objects yet remains; but the desires of the man of discrimination are completely erased by his perception of God.

    The objects of sense come to an end for the man who has rejected them because his senses no longer perceive them, but his desires yet survive. The feeling of attachment lives on. But the passions of the yogi, the doer of selfless action, are annihilated by his perception of the ultimate essence that is God. The accomplished, or enlightened, sage does not, like the turtle, re-extend his senses to objects which are pleasing to them. When once his senses have shrivelled, all the influences and impressions (sanskar) he has carried with him from a previous existence are irrevocably dead. His senses do not then return to life. By apprehending God through the observance of the Way of Selfless Action, even the attachments to objects of sensual pleasure become extinct. Force has often been a feature of meditation, and by its use seekers rid themselves of objects of sense. But thoughts of these objects persist. These attachments are brought to an end only with the perception of God and never before that, because before this stage residues of matter persist. Sri Krishn means precisely the same when he proclaims that although a man’s association with objects of sense ends when he restrains them from reacting to these objects, he is rid of desire for these objects only when he knows his own Self as the identical God through meditation. So we have to act until we have achieved this perception. Goswami Tulsidas has also said that at first there are passions in the heart, which are swept away only by true devotion to God.Sri Krishn speaks about how difficult it is to withdraw the senses from their objects. He says:

    “O son of Kunti, men ought to subdue their senses which seize forcibly even wise and striving minds, and devote themselves to me with perfect concentration, because only that man’s mind is unwavering who has achieved control of his senses.”

    Mutinous senses ravish even discerning and active minds, and undo their steadiness. So with full control over his senses, equipped with yog and devotion, Arjun should find shelter in God, of whom Sri Krishn is an incarnation, for that man alone has a firm mind who has subdued his senses. Here Yogeshwar Krishn explains what ought to be prevented in the course of worship, as also the components of spiritual seeking which it is the duty of men to undertake. Restraint and prohibition alone cannot subdue the senses. Along with negation of senses there must also be incessant contemplation of the desired God. In the absence of such reflection, the mind will be preoccupied with material objects, the evil consequence of which we see in the words of Sri Krishn himself.

    He adds further thatthey whose thoughts are of sensual objects are attached to them, attachment gives rise to desires, and anger is born when these desires are obstructed. The feeling of attachment persists in men who have yet got over their concern with the objects of sense. Desire is born from attachment. And there is anger when there is an obstacle in the way of satisfaction of desire. And what does the feeling of anger give rise to? Sri Krishn preaches:

    “Delusion is born from anger, by which memory is confused; confusion of memory undermines the faculty of discrimination and, when discrimination is lost, the seeker deviates from the means of absolution.’’

    Confusion and ignorance arise from anger. Distinction between the eternal and the transient is obliterated. Remembrance is shaken by delusion, as it happens with Arjun. Sri Krishn says again that in such a state of mind one cannot determine wisely what to do and what not to do. Confusion of memory weakens the seeker’s dedication and loss of discrimination makes him deviate from his goal of being one with God. Here Sri Krishn has emphasized the importance of cultivating unconcern with sensual objects. The worshipper’s mind should rather always be concerned with that-word, form, incarnation, or abode-by which his mind may be enabled to be one with God. The mind is drawn to sensual objects when the discipline of worship is relaxed. Thoughts of these objects produce attachment, which in its own turn results in desire for them. Anger is generated if the satisfaction of this desire is obstructed in any way. And ignorance finally undoes the power of discernment. The Way of Selfless Action is also said to be the Way of Knowledge, for it has always to be kept in view that desire must not be allowed to enter the worshipper’s mind. There are, after all, no real fruits. Advent of desire is inimical to wisdom. Steady contemplation is, therefore, a necessity. A man who does not always think of God strays from the right path that will lead him to ultimate bliss and glory. However, there is one consolation. The chain of worship is only broken, not completely destroyed. Once the joy of worship has been experienced, when taken up again, it resumes from the same point at which it was discontinued. This is the fate of the worshipper who is attached to sensual objects. But what is the lot of the seeker who has mastered his mind and heart? Sri Krishn adds:
  2. Speechless world

    Speechless world New Member

    “But that man achieves spiritual tranquility who has mastered his mind and who remains unaffected by sense-objects although he may be roaming amidst them, because his senses are properly restrained.”

    Possessed of the means of spiritual realization, the sage who has experienced an intuitive perception of the identity of Self and the Supreme Spirit achieves the state of the most sublime peace, because he has subdued his senses, and therefore remained untouched by their objects even though he may be wandering in their midst. No prohibitions are needed for such a man. There is for him nothing unpropitious anywhere against which he should fight and defend himself. There is also for him no good for which he should yearn.Sri Krishn says that after realizing the ultimate repose, all his (the seeker’s) sorrows disappear, and the blissful mind of such a man quickly grows in firmness.Blessed with a vision of God’s ineffable glory and his divine grace, all the worshipper’s griefs-the temporal world and its objects which are the abode of all sorrows-vanish and his power of discrimination grows strong and steady. Hereafter, Sri Krishn dwells upon the lot of those who have not achieved the saintly condition. He says that a man without spiritual accomplishment has no wisdom nor true faith, and a man without devotion knows no peace of mind. Since happiness depends on peace, how can such men be happy?”

    A man who has not undertaken meditation is devoid of selfless action oriented wisdom. This impoverished man is even deficient in the feeling of devotion to the all-pervading Spirit. How can such a mad, without an awareness of the Self within and the God without, be at peace? And how can he, without peace, experience happiness? There can be no devotion without knowing the object of devotion and knowledge comes from contemplation. Without devotion there can be no peace and a man with a disturbed mind cannot experience happiness, much less the state of changeless, eternal bliss. He says that for, as the wind captures the boat on water, just so even one of the senses, that roam amidst objects of their gratification and with which the intellect dwells, is strong enough to sweep away the discrimination of one who is unpossessed of spiritual attainment. As the wind drives a boat far away from its destination, even one out of the five senses roving amongst objects perceived by the intellect can get hold of the man who has not undertaken the task of spiritual quest and discipline. Therefore incessant remembrance of God is essential. Sri Krishn again dwells upon the importance of action-oriented conduct.

    Sri Krishn further says,” Therefore, O the mighty-armed (Arjun), the man who prevents his senses from straying to objects has a steady discrimination.”

    The man who restricts his senses from being drawn to their objects is a man of steady wisdom. “Arm” is a measure of the sphere of action. God is called “mighty-armed” (mahabahu), although he is bodiless and works everywhere without hands and feet. The one who becomes one with him or is inclined to him and is on the way to his sublime splendour is also therefore, “mighty-armed.” That is the significance of the use of this epithet for both Sri Krishn and Arjun.

    He preaches that the true worshipper (yogi) remains awake amidst what is night for all creatures, but the perishable and transient worldly pleasures amidst which all living creatures stay awake are like night for the sage who has perceived reality. The transcendental Spirit is like night for living beings because he can be neither seen nor comprehended by thought. So he is like night, but it is in this night that the spiritually conscious man remains awake because he has seen the formless and known the incomprehensible. The seeker finds access to God through control of senses, peace of mind, and meditation. That is why the perishable worldly pleasures for which living beings toil day after day is night for God’s true worshipper. The sage alone, who beholds the individual Self and the Universal Self and is indifferent to desire, succeeds in his enterprise of God-realization. So he dwells in the world and is yet untouched by it. He says that as the water of the many rivers falls into the full and ever constant ocean without affecting its tranquility, even so the pleasures of sense merge into a man of steady discrimination without producing any deviation, and such a man attains to the state of the most sublime peace rather than yearn for sensual enjoyment. He adds that the man who has renounced all desire, and who conducts himself without ego, arrogance, and attachment, is the one who achieves peace. Men who have given up all desire, and whose actions are entirely free from the feelings of I and mine, realize the ultimate peace beyond which there is nothing to strive for and achieve.Sri Krishn finally concludes:

    “Such, O Arjun, is the steadfastness of the man who has realized God; after attaining to this state he subdues all temptation and, resting firmly in his faith, with his death he continues in this state of rapture of the union of his Self with God.’’

    Such is the state of one who has realized God. Rivers of temporal objects merge into these ocean-like sages who are endowed with self control and an intuitive perception of God.

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