Truth Of Life: [1.7] Ishwara - 07 - Living With Life

Published: 28.05.2008
Updated: 02.07.2015

The Art & Science Of Living

Chapter 1. 

Ishwara: Friendliness


Living With Life

[The present lifestyle has deteriorated one's physical and mental health. People are too busy and have little patience and tolerance. This lifestyle can be changed through early rising, doing yogasanas, practising right breathing and right diet for mental balance, coordination of body and mind and avoiding reaction. Meditation can change one's lifestyle from chaos to tranquillity.]

In today's system, our physical and mental health is deteriorating. An unhealthy mind is naturally inclined to vitiate the atmosphere of society by giving a fillip to propensities of violence, crimes and suicides. Therefore, our life system needs to be deeply pondered over and then creatively changed so that we can establish friendliness with life. It is a harsh truth that without changing this old, mechanised and rotten life system, we can neither lead a successful life nor a dignified death. Life and death are very intimately related as death becomes a big source of inspiration for leading a good life, and life becomes a big source of inspiration for dying a fulfilled death. The present system of life is ridden with fear. It is the truth that today man has much to fear. History has witnessed many wars and battles. While soldiers fought and were killed, the common citizen remained mostly undisturbed and unharmed. Today, the situation is entirely different. Tremendous fear and anxiety affect the common citizens as ethics and rules are ignored. Human rights are being violated with impunity, and common citizens and their properties are also targeted. People feel insecure, tense and anxious, breeding hypertension and heart disease.

The second problem is of that of being extremely busy. The present system of life has made man extremely busy. People have never been so busy in the past. The adverse impact of being busy is vividly seen on two things, i.e., food and sleep. Man is neither able to eat nor sleep on time. Untimely food and sleep always brings about this realisation that the person is very busy. People are so busy that they have no free time. If you ask anyone, if they ever meditated or indulged in self analysis they would say that thy were so busy, that there was no time for meditation. It is merely a feeling of being very busy, otherwise anyone can easily extract (15 to 20 minutes) time for meditation.

The third problem is that of mental chaos, which is more appalling. Man is mentally so chaotic, that he is always hurrying. He has no patience to wait anywhere at all, whether it is when shopping, or visiting a saint or a doctor. When he visits a doctor, he wants to be cured immediately.

A man went to a doctor and said, "Doctor, I have an acute headache. "The doctor gave him medicines. He came back to the doctor after half an hour. The doctor, observing from his facial expressions that he had not been cured, proposed a change of medicines, but the patient had already changed his doctor! Nobody wants to wait and be patient. Everybody seems to be very busy and mentally disturbed.

The third issue is lack of tolerance. Man is mentally in a state of chaos so he cannot be tolerant. Today's child is bereft of any tolerance towards his parents, teachers or neighbours. He does not listen to anyone at all, and he continues to do everything that he wishes whether it is good or bad, moral or immoral, ethical or unethical. Even if he is steered towards valuable and righteous conduct, he has no fortitude and retorts egoistically. There is a total lack of tolerance, which is eating up the very vitals of our life system and creating innumerable problems. Any system is judged on the basis of the output it gives to society. The first flaw of the present life system is that it has only resulted in creating and escalating mental imbalance. If you examine critically, you will find that even a small child today is not mentally balanced. It is a matter of deep concern. The second result is the disturbed digestive system. People of ancient times had strong digestive powers, but today with fast foods, the digestive power has weakened considerably. The third result is disturbed sleep. Today's life system has given sleeplessness to humanity. The gravity of insomnia is much more in the western countries. The amount of expenditure being incurred on medicines for insomnia and disturbed digestion can easily exceed the budget of a state. Proper sleep and digestion are natural to the body. Why should one need medicine for natural processes? Our perverted life system has utterly disturbed even the natural processes of our body and consequently compelled us to depend on medicines worth millions of rupees.

A gentleman said, "Initially I used to swallow one pill of calmpose (sleeping pill) daily. Then the effect of one pill was reduced and I had to take two pills." Likewise he went on increasing the number of pills. Now he is poisoning his stomach with 10 pills and the sleeping pills are highly toxic and intoxicating. At present he is addicted to them, he is unable to sleep without them and so is compelled to take them. Chronic ailments like high blood pressure, tuberculosis and heart ailments have cropped up commonly owing to the present life system. In olden times, these diseases used to be less prevalent; they were known to be the diseases of the affluent and elite class. But now, these diseases are very common and affect the general masses. A principal from Jaipur Medical College said if we could find the solution for high blood pressure then it could be a panacea for the whole world because this ailment exists globally. Heart disease and heart attack are deeply associated with lifestyle. In the state of hurry and being extremely busy, the functioning of the heart is adversely affected. The heart is so mature that it works for eight hours and rests sixteen hours. It palpitates one second and rests for two seconds. Its functioning is exactly like the canon of Prekshadhyana, which supports that whatever you do, couple it with relaxation. When you practise Asanas, do it with relaxation. If you accompany every act with relaxation then it creates balance and harmony. Every act is zero unless it is coupled with a digit, i.e., relaxation. Every inclination should follow the declination and every declination should go with the inclination. It creates a balance. Basically the art of working should maintain a balance of inclination and declination. A lifestyle, which has only inclination or only declination, is not good. The balance of inclination and declination, activeness and passiveness, the state of being busy and relaxed, being tense and at ease are imperative in life. An adequate balance and synthesis of tension and relaxation is needed. Tension is also required in life to some extent, but tension alone can be detrimental, so it has to be accompanied with relaxation, duly compensating it. It is like pulling the rope till it is likely to break. But if you pull it and loosen it also then it will not break as the act is balanced. The heart also relaxes. After every beat, it rests. It means the heart works eight hours and rests sixteen hours in a day.

People keep asking me, "How do you manage to write so much because most of the time we find you surrounded by people?" I reply that actually I do not write much because I believe that those who write the whole day cannot be creative as their mind is never at rest, but overworked by perpetual thinking. Those who really desire to bestow some good creations, ideas and contemplation process to humanity should give the required relaxation to their mind. Those who always keep thinking and remain restless will find that their creation will not be appealing or captivating.

It is necessary to be relaxed and be in self-awareness in order to write a good creation. I remember, whenever I write something, I do not write for more than an hour. When I find myself slipping into the thinking process, then I stop writing. I strongly believe that as long as thoughts flow spontaneously from the mind, I should keep writing. As soon as it seems that the very spontaneity of mind is lost and I have to think and apply pressure on the mind to write, then I stop writing and relax. Milking the cow is also an art. Those who over-milk the cow create a problem, and those who do not milk the cow, also have a problem. Those who rest more than required find their limbs becoming conditioned accordingly and then they become lazy and shirk labour. So it is necessary to use the mind and body in a balanced manner.

If you don't give the required amount of exercise to your body then your health starts weakening and gives rise to innumerable diseases. So the problems of shirking and over­working are quite alarming. In olden times, there used to be a practise of over-milking a cow. The result was that the cow, which was supposed to give milk for ten years, died just after two years. So over-milking is also a problem. It is not understood why man always has his interest in extremity and does not adopt the balanced and middle path. It is probably because there is more interest in extremities than in the middle path. The extremity fascinates more for the obvious reason that it satiates the ego, whereas the middle path does not satisfy the ego. In the Bhagavad Gita, Arjuna says to Lord Krishna that instead of killing his own people for the sake of the kingdom, it was better to renounce this world and take to sanyasa. Human tendency is to seek solace in extremity; extremity is charming because it nurses the ego. But either shirking or overworking is not conducive to the creation of proper health and harmony in life. The balance of work and relaxation fulfils life, but it seems, in our present life system, the facts of restfulness, relaxation and self-awareness in relaxation are not properly nurtured. There is a need to change the system. We should believe in changes and incorporate them so that we benefit.

In the materialistic world of today, scientists have made radical changes and advancements, which have eventually led to dramatic changes in situations and solutions of problems. There is still a requirement of changes at the mental and spiritual levels. The man practising Prekshadhyana has to seriously ponder over changing his life pattern at least. The changes should occur with the morning routine. He must get up early in the morning and witness the rising sun. The first change in his lifestyle should be to wake up early. And this will be possible only when you sleep the previous night in time. In spite of being busy, man can organise his routines and discipline his activities to sleep early at night. The second important change is to practise asanas after finishing morning ablutions. It is necessary to practise asanas and exercise the body to be physically healthy. It is amazing that people do not regulate their life by the time-tested rules. As long as the heat rays of the sun do not touch our body, our digestive system does not function properly. It is because our liver, pancreas, the digestive system, and stomach function properly only when the incense of sun reflects on them. The third important change is right breath. Right breath should be practised in the morning. Right breath means a long breath, not a short breath. From the beginning, you should practise long breathing. You should inhale and exhale long breaths so that you are able to take full oxygen and exhale the full amount of carbon dioxide. Physical and mental health is fully dependent upon the breath.

The fourth change is a right diet. There is very little awareness about food intake. Generally, we are inclined to eat only relishing meals. Our desire is basically associated with tasty food. Refer to my book Food and Spirituality.

The fifth change is mental balance. Mental balance is possible only when our endocrine glands are adequately activated by these practices and their secretion is properly regulated. The balanced flow of the secretion from the endocrine glands reaches our mental cortex and stabilises our mental balance. Those whose endocrine glands malfunction with unregulated secretion find their health certainly deteriorating. Asanas, right breath and right food balance our glands. Asana is meant for maintaining balance and creating dissociation of karma. It simultaneously relaxes and nourishes the thyroid glands.

The practice of Prekshadhyana ensures the balance of those responsible glands and limbs of the body, which ultimately balance our system. Some people meditate but they do not practise yoga. Meditation becomes a hurdle, a problem without the practice of asanas and the control of the senses. Though meditation is good yet it needs to be balanced by the control of the senses and the practice of asanas. Sometimes, it becomes hard to believe that every good act is also blended with a problem. There is nothing in the world which is only blissful and not problematic. Every solution is a potential problem also. Meditation has its own problem. Right breathing and yoga should be practised concurrently with meditation to resolve the problem and create a balance. The nervous system has to spend energy during meditation and yoga compensates the energy spent by the nervous system.

Those who practise meditation for a long period and do not practise yoga have their digestive system disturbed. So right asanas, right breath and right diet are most essential as they all are internally correlated.

The sixth entity is right action. A right action is that where the body and mind co-exist. When the body moves with a certain tendency and the mind wanders towards a different inclination then the action turns out to be false. So we have to practise to keep the movement of the body and mind together. When we pick up bread from the plate, our mind should also go with us. Where the mind and body co-exist and remain united that act is the ideal and perfect act. When the movement of body and mind is separate and different, just as though the body moves in the east, and the mind grazes in the west, there arise conflicts and squabbles. Therefore, there should be harmony between the activity of body and mind so that they work collectively for a righteous action.

The seventh change is abstinence from reaction. In our present life system, we generally indulge in reactions. These take place due to our ambitions, aspirations, weaknesses, desires, thoughts or points of view. A terrible amount of reaction permeates everything. In fact, action is very little and reaction is abounding. Reaction leaves men highly chaotic and anarchic. Total abstinence from reaction is not possible in life, as long as there is excitement and agony in life, there will be reaction. Abstinence from reaction means the balance of impulses. These impulses cannot be cleared altogether, however they can be controlled. So abstinence from reaction implies the control of our impulses. This is a life system, which can be formed by the practice of Prekshadhyana and Sadhana. In this scientific era, man has changed tremendously. Isn't there a need to change the present, decayed and rotten style of life, which is the creation of multiple problems? It is urgently imperative to review our present lifestyle and system. Man can certainly lead a life free from chaos and problems with immense peace and tranquillity. The very motto of coming to this camp is that people should return with their life changed. After attending the camp of Prekshadhyana, if the lifestyle is not changed, then the purpose is lost, and attending the camp merely becomes a mechanical routine, a mere show and occurrence. Attending camps can be meaningful only when the old lifestyle is given up like old, worn clothes, and a new throbbing lifestyle is intrinsically adhered to.

It will be a true and splendid fulfilment, if a new Lustre and illumination descends on your life. By accomplishing this, you could practically inspire others and prove it by comparing your changed life with the old, bygone, rotten life. Then you will not have to preach or give discourse to others. Your changed, enlightened and blessed lifestyle will itself inspire and enlighten others.

Edited by Muni Dulharaj
Copyright by Pathfinder Trust, New Delhi, India ©2001
Published by Sterling Publishers Pvt.Ltd., New Delhi, India
Translated by Pathfinder Trust, New Delhi, India
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Page glossary
Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Asana
  2. Asanas
  3. Bhagavad Gita
  4. Body
  5. Contemplation
  6. Discipline
  7. Fear
  8. Gita
  9. Jaipur
  10. Karma
  11. Krishna
  12. Meditation
  13. Prekshadhyana
  14. Sadhana
  15. Science
  16. Science Of Living
  17. Thyroid Glands
  18. Tolerance
  19. Violence
  20. Yoga
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