Patience and perseverance !
elmec at GIASBG01.VSNL.NET.IN
Thu Mar 2 09:11:25 CST 2000
Anand Hudli wrote:
> I have a slightly different take on this. Some people seem to have the
> belief that they can make life as complicated as they want and still be
> able to do justice to spiritual pursuits. Let me be a little more
> precise. When confronted with a choice of A) acquire more material
> wealth/comforts etc at the cost of making life more complicated
> and having less time for spiritual matters, or B) live with
> relatively less material wealth but with relatively more time for
> spiritual matters, such people would choose A) over B). The justification
> given is: "Somehow I will be able to squeeze in a couple of hours here
> and there to do my meditation! Let me not give up this once-in-a-lifetime
> opportunity (to earn big bucks or something other material benefit)!"
> I believe this approach is one of delusion. Since I don't believe in
> pontificating, let me mention my personal choice that I had to make
> and that I am comfortable with. A couple years ago, I had a choice of
> two job offers - A) a reasonably good job with a reasonably good salary
> and benefits, B) a outstanding job with a salary + benefits at least
> 50%-60% higher (or perhaps even more) than A). However, accepting B) would
> mean I would have considerably less time for anything else but my job.
> While I was trying to decide between the two, I remembered the words of
> Shankara which seemed to ring in my ears,
> "mUDha jahIhi dhanAgamatR^ishhNAM, kuru sadbuddhiM manasi vitR^ishhNAm.h"
> "O fool! Give up your thirst for accumulating wealth. Think of the Reality,
> with contentment." Choosing A) was obviously the right thing for me and
> that is what I did. My accumulated materialistic loss may well be
> in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, but I have the satisfaction
> of listening to Shankara's advice.
> So sometimes "sacrificing" one's thirst for wealth and/or other material
> benefits may be called for in order to maintain progress on the spiritual
> side. Instead, if one is deluded into thinking that no matter how
> complicated and materialistic life becomes, one can always find time to
> keep up with spiritual matters, that is a big mistake, in my opinion.
> In brief, if one has an opportunity to make life less complicated
> materialistically, then one must take that opportunity even if it
> means some "sacrifice" is necessary.
I totally agree with Sri Anand's view of making life simple and get more time
for spirituality. But here is a hitch. If both husband and wife have similar
interest in vedaanta, they both will go for a less complicated life and hence
more contentment and more leisure to pursue their vedaantic interest. This sort
of interest in both the spouses is purely by divine grace. If on the other hand,
one has spiritual interests and other has materialistic interests, the spiritual
one has to make sacrifice of her/his interest in order to maintain peace in the
family. It is very hard to make a materialistically oriented spouse to
understand the abstract interest of the other. And if that spouse were to be
from a family where there was no religious interests also, God only should save
our friend. But, my friend, take heart, dont despair. If one has genuine
interest in vedaanta, then God will definitely create an opportunity to pursue
that interest somehow. Patience and perseverance one should have in this matter.
And no outward show of vairaagya is advised for a house holder in the interest
of marital harmony. We should firmly believe that it is God's will that I
should play the role of a house holder and we should play the role to the best
of our capacity in order to please Ishwara so that He may give us promotion soon
! We must have that vairaagya hidden in our antahkarana and we should believe
that looking after the husband and children are the foremost responsibility that
Ishwara has vested upon us. If we carry out this to His satisfaction, one day or
the other He will definitely release us from all these bondages - "
oorvaarukamiva bandhanaath mukshiiya "- should be our prayer to Him. As the
cucumber waits patiently to get ripened and get released from the creeper, so
should we patiently wait for our antahkarana to reach that stage of ripening
when Ishwara Himself will release us and allow us to tread the jnaana maarga.
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