Anekanta: The Third Eye: [07.10] Relative Estimation - Living Around The Self: Living Around Others

Published: 30.06.2007
Updated: 02.07.2015

Assess the self and others. Assess both but from different perspectives. Let us make full use of the principle of anekanta. It is has been our greatest mistake that we have shoved anekanta into the world of philosophy. Anekanta is the principle of meditational practice. It is not the rule for logic nor does it belong to systems of logic. It is the perception of the pure conscious. One who is not trying to cleanse his psyche cannot access the view of anekanta. Anekanta is accessible only by a spiritual person. Only the one who has pacified passions and is not agitated or plagued by biases can access anekanta. The one who has learnt to live around the self has the potential to become a follower of anekanta. But the one living around others, does not stand a chance of understanding anekanta.

It is an old story. One day Shiva called his sons Kartikeya and Ganesha. He told them to go around the world. The one who finishes first would be eligible for a prize. Kartikeya was strong. He sat on his mount and set off to accomplish the task. Ganesha was on the heavier side and his mount was the rat. "Whatever the prize, the race is very difficult. I cannot even think of winning it," thought Ganesha. Circumstances are never binding on man. He tries to make the impossible possible. Without knowing it anekanta enters our life.

Ganesha began exploring all the possibilities. He thought he just had to find a way. "Defeat is mine, but I must think of the possibility of winning." He concentrated deeply. He found the solution. He got up. He went around Shiva three times and sat down. Kartikeya returned some time later. He had complete confidence in himself and his mount Garuda, the eagle. He told Shiva, "I have finished, but Ganesha has not. Poor chap how could he have gone. His vehicle is the rat. Give me the prize" Ganesha said, "I returned before you." Kartikeya asked, "If you never went, then how did you return? You have been sitting in the same place." Ganesha laughed and said, "I have circumambulated the world thrice." Kartikeya asked in wonder, "How?" Ganesha replied, "I went around Shiva, three times. In him reside the three worlds. Shiva is the world and the world is Shiva. The world is not separate from Shiva." Replied Shiva in a decisive tone, "Ganesha has won and Kartikeya has lost."

The one who lives around the self always wins while the one who does not live around the self but depends on others always loses.

Desire propels man. Only the one who lives around the self can overcome desire. The one who is always obsessed with objects can never overcome desire. Man has many desires, mental dispositions and aspirations, obsessions and passions. They may all never be fulfilled. Till now history tells us no man has been able to satisfy all his desires. At the time of death he would say that a certain desire remained in his heart, it could never be fulfilled. Ravana said the same thing. Napoleon and Alexander spoke similarly. Everybody said the same thing... that his desires were still unfulfilled. If anybody had said that he was content, he must have been one who had lived around himself. All those who have lived around themselves never say that any of their desires have been left incomplete. Those who are within themselves satisfy all their desires but those who think only of others are never able to satisfy their desires. May our wisdom awaken and may we understand the value of relativity.

  • Anekanta: The Third Eye by Acharya Mahaprajna, © 2002
  • Translated by Sudhamahi Regunathan
  • Published by Jain Vishva Bharati Institute (Deemed University), Ladnun, Rajasthan, India

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