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From Parents to Parmatma II PDF Print E-mail
Gita - Gita Articles

We learned how Parents desires form the initial driving force of a child. Peer pressure along with the society they grow up play a part. They grow up and start developing their own driving force, their own desires.

Parents start having problems when they see this happening. Sooner or later they have to let it go. The children will have their own desires, their own goals and their own destiny. However, it is important to realize the transition of one driving force to the other. It appears for a time being that this is going to be hard. Parents can’t let it go and the children are afraid if they can make it on their own. Sooner or later the children are able to carry on and then they become parents themselves.

Desires become the main driving force in our lives. Desire to do bad or desire to do good are two different ends of desiring. Let us first examine where desires come from. The origin is thoughts. Thinking about a subject brings an attachment to the subject. The flower in the garden is beautiful. This is a fact. I like that flower is coming close to becoming attached. I want that flower is the next step. This is a desire. How do I get that flower? Now I have to plan. Intellect has to come into the play.

It is important to realize these steps. It then becomes easier to understand where interruptions can be made. Thoughts will come and go. If I can see attachment developing, it is easier to intervene early than when it becomes deep rooted desire. By the time it becomes a strong desire, it is fairly late. When anger arises it usually is too late.

Desires to do good:
The society wants us to desire to become good persons by desiring to do good deeds. It is also important to mention at the outset that good desires also have the same pathway. Thoughts arise and it leads to attachment before it becomes a desire. Children in villages should be educated is a thought. I want to get involved and make it happen is a desire.

Just desiring is not enough to get any where. It needs the determination to do it. Some sort of commitment is needed. Sankalp (determination) is a prerequisite. Now the force of determination makes us move and keep moving. Many projects are started in the spur of the moment. Only the ones that have the backing of sankalp (determination) get somewhere.

Desire and determination are important. However, discipline makes it shine. A combination of desire, determination and discipline makes impossible goals possible. Gandhi had this combination mastered so well and everyone knows what he was able to achieve. His desire was to achieve independence of India by non-violent means. He made it possible by his determined and disciplined approach.

All the same, it is still desire and there is still attachment present in desire to become a good person. But this is needed even to go on the spiritual path. A deep longing is the beginning. Thought of divine arises. An attachment is bound to happen and the desire to get to Krishna or get enlightenment has to arise. A fourth factor comes in to play here especially in the spiritual pathway. Patience, a tremendous patience is required to get to the ultimate. Shakaracharya said that if you have the patience of emptying the ocean with a blade of grass, you can get to the enlightenment. When that amount of patience is reached, suddenly there is disappearance of desire, sankalp (determination), discipline and the patience as well. Only the divine remains.

Speech and thoughts

May my speech abide in my mind
And my mind abide in my speech
Oh, self illumined soul,
Be manifest to me
Oh, speech and mind
Both of you are foundation of my knowledge;
Hence do not destroy my knowledge.”

Nirvana Upanishad.

Before we get to the divine, we ought to understand this part of our thoughts. This is what the Rishis is praying for. It sounds like a very mundane prayer. The Rishi is talking about thoughts and mind. Yes, these steps are important. It is important to understand the importance of thoughts, desires and speech. There needs to be a coordination that is required between thoughts and mind. A filter is needed. Every thought does not need to be expressed. Thoughts can be used a s weapons as well. It is easy to hurt some one badly by just few words. Blind son of a blind father went very deep in the hearts of Duryodhana.

Desires are a driving force for most of us and it is difficult to understand how we can do without this driving force. Parent’s desires as driving force can be done away with but it is hard to comprehend how we can live successfully without our own desires. What will drive us to be good and be successful in that situation? We shall explore that in our next column.

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