There exists in human beings the unique capacity to conceptualize an ideal. But as readily as that comes to you in a state of inspiration or ‘darshan’- where you instantly glimpse the truth; rising up to that ideal is often a challenging, trying journey. It’s almost as if numerous forces line themselves up to frustrate and defeat your noble efforts. Why should it be like that? Why do we inevitably find ourselves in a battle with circumstances, to simply reach that, which we have been made to see or understand? Why is it not so that upon understanding, I be instantly lifted from my ignorance to enlightenment? Why must I have to wage a war against so many demons to attain that glimpse of Reality that has been made cognizable to my understanding? What are these obstacles that stand in my way?
Following the path of your understanding till you reach that ideal is your ‘Dharma’. Making a pilgrimage from the baser occupations of your life to your highest calling is your individual ‘Svadharma’. Now, having intended to follow my ‘svadharma’ why should I face so many obstacles to get there? Why should these obstacles exist? Who has put them before me?
The obstacles I face, are nothing but the hardened accumulation of my own past sins or indiscretions; the unconscious habits that have formed my character. And my character, in turn, has carved out my destiny. This destiny manifests itself in the circumstances I face today. The enemies we face on the outside were at first born within: and then nurtured and armed to destroy the very self who gave them life. But how did this happen? How did I unwittingly give rise to my own nemesis? How do I cultivate an objective view of this nemesis so as to conquer it?
The thoughts we entertain in our minds are the harbingers of the circumstances we will awake to. Thoughts that run askew and are unaligned with reality, drawn in different directions by desire, greed, insecurity, anger, fear, attachments and pride- are off the mark and are, what we identify as ‘sins’. Typically, sins agitate the mind and strip it off its repose and dignity. The way to know or see that your actions have been sinful, is to reflect upon one’s own state of mind- Are you happy, cheerful, optimistic, looking forward, or are you miserable, angry, pessimistic and hateful? Happiness in any condition- that is a state of being at peace with any circumstance is in itself, an indication of a mind attuned to a Higher Reality. On the other hand, being agitated at the slightest provocation, being thrown into despair, being fearful and angry, or constantly plotting to change circumstances so that they favour you- indicates a disarrayed mind. Such a mind lacks an ideal or a Godhead towards which thoughts ought to be directed. The first step to conquering an enemy is identifying it, then understanding it, and ultimately commanding it!
Immediately install at the dark altar of your ignorance an ideal or a Godhead. Daily, light a small lamp of knowledge to dispel false ideas and glimpse on a daily basis your ideal. Let you intellect keep a watch over all layers of your personality. Let them be ordered and integrated by the sane counsel of your intellect; and let your intellect in turn, fix its attention on that ideal/ Godhead. Your thoughts must be kept under a tight watch. They must be conscious and dedicated to your ideal. Your thoughts must revolve around your ideal- like the gopis immersed in their love for Krishna dance in a spirit of surrender and devotion around Him.