Why is peace so essential for a seeker?-II

The great epic Mahabharat depicts the history of Pandavas and  Kauravas, the descendents of King Bharat; it  includes the Kurukshetra war and most importantly Bhagwad Gita. Bhagwad Gita is a part of Mahabharat and the holy scripture originated 5000 years ago which was compiled by Maharishi Ved Vyasa, the great rishi. He was the son of rishi Parashar and has to his credit of compiling the longest epic titled Mahabharat. This epic was compiled keeping in mind that basic spiritual knowledge should reach every segment of the society be it the uneducated, women or the deprived ones, hence it is so vast and lengthy. And in addition to Mahabharat, Maharishi Ved Vyasa also composed 18 puranas (legendary stories), Brahma sutra and most notably Shrimad Bhagwad Gita.  Shrimad Bhagwad Gita is a song divine, the nectar of God and has endowed in it the eternal knowledge or shashwat gyan of immortality of our Spirit.

The Pandavas and Kauravas were cousin brothers and Kurukshetra became the battle ground of wicked Kauravas and the pious Pandavas over inheritance.  They were the warring clans because of Duryodhana the eldest Kaurava, who vehemently declined to transfer the legitimate kingdom to scion Yudhisthir, the eldest of all the Pandava brothers.  It was this fierce war that Arjuna refused to fight against his own kith and kin and instead accepted living as an ascetic. However, Lord Krishna motivated him during that time and advocated not be averse to face the formidable situation as this was his duty, his dharma. And afterwards, being pleased with his obedience and devotion, Lord Krishna also revealed to him his divine form. Surprisingly, Bhagwad Gita is the only holy scripture that was born during the time of a war while all other great scriptures have originated in times of peace.

The teacher and  guru in Shrimad Bhagwad Gita is Lord Krishna who is considered to be a holy avatar and the recipient or disciple is his foremost believer Arjuna, who in great distress and  grief turns to Krishna his savior, friend, philosopher and personal guide in all times. Lord Krishna explains Arjuna about his duties as a warrior, prince and individual self and preaches him that never should we ignore or fear any life situation that we encounter, as that is our karma and dharma both. Yet the fruit of our karmas should be surrendered to the Almighty without any expectations or desire of any kind.

Shrimad Bhagwad Gita is the ultimate statement of spiritual knowledge comprising of 700 verses of Sanskrit verses which reveal the essence of ancient Vedantic philosophy. It is a holy science of Vedantic knowledge comprising of Hindu philosophy of indestructible Atman. It is an Upanishad in its own right and is a concise guide to Hindu theology. It has an universal appeal because it confers upon us the answers to our self enquiry on our quest and journey to self realizatioin.

It is also called ‘Geetopanishad’, song of Upanishad. What’s more, some even  call it ‘Mokshashastra,’ the scripture of liberation, since it contains exact knowledge of Atma, Parmatma, yoga, karma, reincarnation, duties of a seeker in times of personal crises and a lot more.

 During later times, a Bhakti sect saint, poet and social reformer named Gyaneshwar was born in Maharashtra in the 13th century in India. As the language Sanskrit was inaccessible for the masses, he expanded and translated those 700 verses into 9999 verses in local language, Marathi in order to reach out to maximum people and thus gave them access to this ancient knowledge which is endowed in Bhagwad Gita. Until before this, Sanskrit was a Brahmin’s language. The sacred book is ‘Gyaneshwari’ and it has detailed knowledge about metaphysics, kundalini and astrology as well.

 With god’s grace, I was fortunate to have made a visit to the pilgrimage city Alandi, in Maharashtra in April 2006. It is the samadhi  place of saint Gyaneshwar who has authored the Marathi commentary on the Bhagwad Gita. However, I have read just some part of it which pertained to why and how should one be in control of one’s senses and mind in order to attain calmness and enduring peace. Controlling the restless mind and eager senses is the duty of the sadhak, it said. The verses are metrical and beautiful and has profound richness endowed in it.

Dear friends, now we will move on to the lesson of our day. But before that let me request you to kindly read the two parts of this post together to get a better understanding on the discussion that is going on since quite some time. This blog is a worldwide forum and as people from all over are getting interested slowly in the ancient knowledge of self realization, it is suggested that you read both these posts a few times more. And if possible also run through a few pages of Bhagwad Gita to get to the depth of Vedantic philosophy, and chapter 2 in particular.

And here I need to quote and go back to the last article-‘Why is peace so essential for a seeker?-I.

 “How should one read the holy book Bhagwad Gita?

First and foremost we must invoke the spirit of Lord Krishna and his chief disciple Arjuna, both.

Why?

Lord Krishna will impart the eternal knowledge of Self while the all pervading Spirit of Arjuna will teach us how to be an ideal disciple of the Spiritual Master and mentor. And how to balance one’s inner spiritual life with the outer physical and material world consisting of our family, relatives, society, profession and others areas; that is to say that the inner world and the outer world must meet and converge on a positive note. We need to learn to balance both for our happiness, emotional security and sustained peace of mind.”

 In the Bhagwad Gita, seeing the divine form of Lord Krishna, the consciousness of Arjuna expands by breaking the narrow limits of his old self. The temporary clouds of ignorance float away and he sees the infinite form of Cosmic Consciousness. He saw the light of thousand suns in Lord Krishna and they both merged as one in each other into that Cosmic Light.

 Once the consciousness of Arjuna incorporates with that of Lord Krishna and becomes one, they both have one thought or sankalpa and there is no demarcation and difference between the disciple and the Master, the individuality of Arjuna disappears.  After this, there is resonance in their intention and thought as they are in unison with the all pervading God and they both can impart spiritual knowledge to their respective disciples.

Arjuna is an epitome of an ideal disciple in Indian history who had complete control over his senses and mind. He was an ideal yogi, disciple, son, husband, father, archer, marksman and a compassionate and just human being. He was equally skilled in yogic practices as he was in worldly affairs. He struck a balance between both his worlds and delivered more than satisfactory results as the situation at that time demanded of him. Like him, we too need to have knowledge of Self and the world alike.

One can’t realize God until the environment that one lives in is calm and peaceful steadily. If there are tiffs and tensions in relationships or if there are financial problems at home, the mind cannot be in a peaceful state obviously. So invoke the spirit of Arjuna to bring about a change in attitude by not neglecting the assigned duties for personal growth and development, financial security, family’s progress, cordial relations with society and family. They all are important.

In the last post it was mentioned that peace is a prequalification to know God. It is true that we must shed egoism, frustration, earthly desires etc. so that the mind is in tranquil state and we do not create wrongful thought patterns in our consciousness. The frittered mind breaks the unity with God hence the mind’s attention and focus should be extended as much as one can. After practicing controlling the wavering mind like Arjuna, the seeker faces yet another major problem- that of offensive attacks from other people without one’s own fault or mistaken action and that too quite often!

There will always be enough people who will be malicious and wicked and will target you even though you will wish good for them always. You may be too preoccupied with your routine tasks and spiritual practices yet their snipes and verbal attacks may shrink your joyous temperament. What should one do in such a case?? How can we try to return to equilibrium?

First of all remember this -Do not lose your peace…. And

  • Have minimum contact and talk as less as possible with such troubling people.
  • Do not do anything that will provoke them and in return they might harm or play a mischief with you more than ever before.
  • When you meditate, pray for them that their nature should be more kind, sweet and caring.
  • Listen more and talk less with such nasty people.
  • When they harm you, tell God about it during the time of your prayers. God will send help to you in some form and will also give you solutions and answers to your problems in that relationship.
  • When you will meditate, their face will re -appear in front of you. Ignore it and bring back your mind to your point of concentration.

 How to seek and maintain peace while living here, in this world?

At this juncture I recall a very interesting incident between Arjuna and his wife Draupadi.

When in exile after Varnavata mishap, the mother of the Pandavas had taught them to share  everything that they got as alms equally amongst themselves. Upon returning home with Draupadi whom Arjun won in swayamvar, he addresses his mother by saying, “Look mother what we have got in alms today.” Unmindful of what Arjuna was referring to, she unassumingly asked the brothers to share whatever they got. And in order to obey the order of their mother all five Pandavas accepted Draupadi as their wives. Later Draupadi told Arjun, “You won me as your wife in the contest held at my father’s palace. Although now I am to be shared equally with all your brothers, my mind will always be with you, although physically I may be with other brothers.” Such should be one’s mind- always focused on God though physically we may live anywhere in this world.

Like Draupadi, who was in soul and heart of Arjun but outwardly she belonged to all other Pandavas, in the same way we should be of God although we may live in this world and we may have to live with all sorts of people and face many kinds of tough situations. The mind should be stabilized, steady and ever fixed on omnipresent God to retain peace and equanimity. How?

  • Always remember to recall God and your gurus for help in times of distress and difficulties. Peace shall return. You will find solutions to your spiritual as well as worldly problems; seek their guidance and supervision to find your way out of darkness and difficulties. Meditate more often.
  • While doing normal daily activities cut off for a while from the existing scenario and gather peaceful vibes by recalling some tranquil moments of your meditations or peaceful places that you have visited.
  • Practice composure every day, even till the last day of your life as there is no substitute for peace in our life.
  • Listen well and attentively to others. Give a gap between the words that stream in your ears and the words that fall out. Increase that gap. Although this might sound easy but the mind is forceful and often gets out of control. One needs long practice in controlling the flow of words and the choice of words also that one may use while speaking.
  • Learn and practice the art of speaking.  Talk less; speak a small number of words which may meet your requirements.
  • Save mental energy. Practice silence and peace; speak still fewer words and live in peace. It is essential!!!

 Narayan Narayan Hari Hari Prabhu Narayan Narayan Hari Hari

              Hari Om! Shanti, Shanti, Shanti Om!

In Alandi, in Apr 2006

8 Responses to Why is peace so essential for a seeker?-II

  1. doodlescribble says:

    Dear Sarika Aunty,

    Wishing you a Happy Independence Day and also lots of good wishes on the Birth Anniversary of Sri Aurobindo which coincides with the date. I had made a visit to Sri Aurobindo Ashram today to witness the celebrations of His Anniversary and a beautiful March Past with lamps by the Ashram-ites to the tune of Vande Mataram. The day somehow was favourable with a cool gentle breeze, a light drizzle and pleasant sunlight dispersing through the floating clouds.

    I had taken a brief sabbatical from your blog in order to take on the daily routines of life with the strength and wisdom I had garnered through you previous posts. And lately I realised the necessity to return to this goldmine of wisdom.

    Your drawing of comparisons of Arjuna-Krishna relationship to our daily lives is indeed a gem of wisdom which can be easily related to. Also the advices of overcoming the hurdles one faces almost every day in our interaction with other human-beings are pearls to be treasured by us.

    My sincere suggestion is to bring more such comparisons and relations of the sacred, wise and sanguine teachings of our Scriptures to our daily lives. The biggest commotion a person faces every day is to strike that balance between spirituality and reality. In our lives one cannot renounce the world, leave his social responsibilties, trek to some secluded cave in the Himalayas to achieve Liberation and Moksha.

    Your must keep pouring such posts to decimate all negative vibes created by some people in our surroundings, by certain articles in the newspapers and news channels and the like.

    Take care and Regards,
    Deepanjan

    • spiritinlife says:

      Dear Deepanjan, Your were missed on the blog during the sabbatical taken by you. By reading your comments, quite a few people were inspired and there was wonderful exchange of ideas. Thanks for the same. I always welcome and wait for your views, questions etc put up as comments because as you had mentioned earlier that this blog is an online class, I feel very happy if someone is utilising these posts and trying to uplift himself. And yes as you must have come to know by now, this is the aim of this blog.
      So we were there in the Ashram during the celebration on 15th Aug but sadly we did’nt meet ! Anyway I went to the samadhi around 7.30 am and wish I had met you, it would have been wonderful. I enjoyed reading your description of the birth anniversary of Shri Aurobindo in a creative manner. I am blessed that I happened to be there on an auspicious occasion and I am also getting great help in blogging in the ashram because of the peaceful vibrations present here.
      The Banyan Tree stands next / opposite the old prayer hall which has been broken down in the school in the Ashram vicinity, most likely to reconstruct it. As a child you must have played in the vicinity of this sacred tree completely unaware of your future connection with it.
      I am going to reply to your next question regarding the friterring of your mind and other related personal dilemma in the next post in detail as so many readers may be facing the same problem but are shy to ask. So please wait till I prepare the next post so that you benefit a lot. Never feel shy to ask if you want to learn the highest principles and asking relevant questions with a free mind is a quality of a good seeker. Until then, read other posts and read the present posts once again as all the posts are interlinked.
      With God and Gurus’ love for you
      Sarika Aunty

      • doodlescribble says:

        Dear Sarika Aunty,

        Oh! Missed meeting you a by a cat’s whisker, I came to Ashram in the afternoon. Though I had comprehended meeting you many a times yet I have always wanted to wait for the destined time. I am sure that will happen one day when God will feel the need of it. Let me, as a disciple to you as my Guru, be prepared mentally and spiritually to confront you with more happiness and joy.

        I am ever grateful and ever humbled with the nice words you have used to describe the effect of my comments on this blog. It definitely inspires me to delve more into the wider realms of Spirituality through your blog. You must keep writing.

        I will eagerly await your next post.

        Best Regards,
        Deepanjan

        • spiritinlife says:

          Deepanjan, I just got over with the next post and I hope you get all the answers. In fact, this post contains answers for many seekers and they have been writing to me. It is good to see some of the readers taking so much interest in their spiritual pursuits.
          It is true that we shall meet when God decides for us, until then study hard and study well. Put all your soul and heart in the words of the illumined masters and make your life successful by meeting the goal of human existence…
          I appreciate your insistence about my continuing writing articles of spiritual matters. As long as my gurus want me to write and as long as someone benefits, I shall continue to do so. Regarding writing in wider mediums like newspapers and tv, so far there is no indication from God. But I understand and appreciate your care and concern about others because you feel as many as possible people should be covered by these write ups. Your good karma will be rewarded by the omnipresent. May we all move from darkness to Light, from ignorance to Truth and from narrowness to expansion and finally to the Ultimate.
          With my blessings
          Sarika Aunty.

  2. Shahid says:

    Some para’s i loved in this post are:

    1. “Like Draupadi, who was in soul and heart of Arjun but outwardly she belonged to all other Pandavas, in the same way we should be of God although we may live in this world and we may have to live with all sorts of people and face many kinds of tough situations. ”
    ———————————-
    * Great example to drive the point home Sarikaji

    2. “There will always be enough people who will be malicious and wicked and will target you even though you will wish good for them always. You may be too preoccupied with your routine tasks and spiritual practices yet their snipes and verbal attacks may shrink your joyous temperament. What should one do in such a case?? How can we try to return to equilibrium?

    First of all remember this -Do not lose your peace…. And

    Have minimum contact and talk as less as possible with such troubling people.
    Do not do anything that will provoke them and in return they might harm or play a mischief with you more than ever before.
    When you meditate, pray for them that their nature should be more kind, sweet and caring.
    Listen more and talk less with such nasty people.
    When they harm you, tell God about it during the time of your prayers. God will send help to you in some form and will also give you solutions and answers to your problems in that relationship.
    When you will meditate, their face will re -appear in front of you. Ignore it and bring back your mind to your point of concentration. ”
    —————————————————
    * This is something practical we all need and may need to implement at one point or another in our lives .I also read somewhere that when people gossip about you behind your back or say bad things about you, they take away a part of our bad karma’s, so we should Thank them actually. Is that true Sarikaji ?

    I also envy you since you have gone for pilgrimages to so many holy places. I haven’t even started yet and there are so many places i wish to go to, so eager to start. Mera number kab aayey ga, Babaji ? 🙂

    • spiritinlife says:

      Shahid this is a practcal post in the sense that one may be very intense during the quiet hours of reading scriptures or early meditations but the moment we step out of our homes, there is a problem, sometimes a storm. Or where relationships are concerned, some may be problematic and therefore the aspirant loses his/her sleep as well as one’s peace. Therefore, we should know how to tackle our problem, of remaining peaceful most of the time.The mind should be kept in equanimity by sadhak as far as possible and the tips given here should be applied. As they are given to me by my Gurus who are very wise and practical, they are going to be useful for all of us.
      If people say negative remarks behind your back, they surely create bad deeds but they do not take away our bad karmas, they cannot be negated in such simple methods. If that was so moksha would have been so much easier to attain!:)
      Wait till the nod from your Master comes and you can also go for further learning to holy places. Until then you can visit the nearby places, no problem.

  3. Jerry Joseph says:

    Dear Sarika Maam,
    I have also visited Alandi as I have read about Saint Dnyneshwar and Dnyaneshwari written by various people, particularly Guru Nitya Chaitanya Yati, a disciple of Sri Narayana Guru. There at Alandi, people presented me a copy of English translation Shri Dnyaneshwari. Though I glanced through the entire book several times, I am yet to go through it carefully. Hope to read it after some time. There is a definite calm and peacefulness around Jeev Samadhi of Saint Dnyneshwar. I really enjoyed the serenity surrounding the place and can still re-call that.
    regards,
    Jerry.

  4. Midhun Pk says:

    ohm namo narayanaya.

    Dear ma, pranam,

    Thanks a lot for expalining everything in very detail with examples, and guidelines.

    Difficulties and trouble in a seekers life almost all are mentioned here. a perfect guiding and helping ma.

    May all seekers can overcome all the troubles and difficulties by following and practicing the guide lines here, with the grace of lord and gurus.

    I will read this post again.

    ॐ द्यौ: शान्ति रन्तरिक्षँ शान्ति:
    पृथिवी शान्ति राप: शान्तिरोषधय: शान्ति:।
    वनस्पतय: शान्ति र्विश्वे देवा: शान्ति र्ब्रह्म शान्ति:
    सर्वँ शान्ति: शान्तिरेव शान्ति: सा मा शान्तिरेधि॥
    ॐ शान्ति: शान्ति: शान्ति:॥
    =यजुर्वेद ३६:१७

    Aum dyauḥ śāntirantarikṣaṁ śāntiḥ
    pṛthivī śāntirāpaḥ śāntiroṣadhayaḥ śāntiḥ
    vanaspatayaḥ śāntirviśvedevāḥ śāntirbrahma śāntiḥ
    sarvaṁ śāntiḥ śāntireva śāntiḥ
    sā mā śāntiredhi
    Aum śāntiḥ, śāntiḥ, śāntiḥ
    =Yajurveda 36:17

    May peace radiate there in the whole sky as well as in the vast ethereal space everywhere.
    May peace reign all over this earth, in water and in all herbs, trees and creepers.
    May peace flow over the whole universe.
    May peace be in the Supreme Being Brahman.
    And may there always exist in all peace and peace alone.
    Aum peace, peace and peace to us and all beings!

    With love,
    Midhun Pk

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