WINNING LIFE’S BATTLES
Blog by BRIGADIER Chitranjan Sawant,VSM
|By Brigadier Chitranjan Sawant,VSM
We fight a battle a day. Sometime, we fight a battle an hour or may be every minute. I am not indulging in war mongering at this point of time. What I propose to write is not a treatise for a Kshatriya (warrior class in the Hindu hierarchy) for a modern war either. It is what the common people like you and I have to face every day throughout life. Even an ascetic immersed in Ahimsa to his finger tips also has his own life’s battle to fight. It is the same story day after day all over the world. Fighting battles of life is inevitable. So, why not fight to win always and every time. No one should look for an escape route after the battle is joined but engage the enemy squarely. Evil desires like avarice, greed for ill-gotten wealth, lack of charity and coveting for what is not yours are enemies within an individual’s mind and body.
“Na dainyam, Na palayanam,’’ is the main mantra given by Yogeshwar Shri Krishna to all human beings fighting against the enemy within and the enemy without. He has said : don’t run away from your problems in life and don’t beg the enemy for mercy. Steel your nerves, strengthen your will power and you are bound to win the battle of life. A person should never underestimate the prowess of the enemy within. “Kaam, Krodh, Lobh, Moh,’’ (lust, anger, greed and excessive attachment) are the primary enemies that an individual must defeat in order to advance towards his goal.
Ved, (celestial knowledge) the greatest gift of God to man for guidance given at the beginning of human creation, shows the pragmatic path. It is through action and constant practice of the action that an individual can beat the enemy at this own game. One may follow the path of `Prarthana (prayer) and Purushartha (action) to achieve the aim of winning life’s battles. Pray to Parmatma (God), who is addressed as Dev Savitah, in the Ved meaning that He is the pristine and absolutely primary source of inspiration. In order to steel our nerves and strengthen the will power the first step is to beseech Him for leading us to attain purification of mind and heart. The Vedic word for a blend of wisdom emanating from mind and emotions emanating from heart is KET. May God make my KET pious, may I be a do-gooder, may I never ever think evil of the fellow man. Once a man or a woman is pious – pure in mind and heart – it would be a child’s play to forsake self-interest and always think of society before self.
When the number of self effacing individuals in a social set up rises, they form the backbone of the forces of noble human beings and collectively fight against the forces of evil. In order to defeat the evil forces decisively the forces of good must forsake narrow bigoted dogmas and constantly endeavour to uplift their spirits and morally be on a strong wicket. In the wider sphere, at the national or international level, the Vedic thought envisages creation of an inspiring leadership. Leaders of society must provide protection to people even while risking their own interest. This is achievable, says the mantra when a social set up or a nation evolves a community of selfless teachers or Vachaspati. The teachers will motivate the new generation to walk on the Vedic path as was done by the ancestors. Indeed teachers are great motivators. A forward looking nation should pay adequate attention to the requirements of teachers and give them due respect so that teachers are themselves sufficiently motivated to motivate the new generation. The future prospects of a nation lies in the hands of the youth who wish to excel in various walks of life and are also patriotic. Patriotism is handed down from generation to generation in the form of stories and anecdotes of the Brave men and women narrated by parents and grand parents to their children and children’s children in the form of bedtime tales of patriots. Inculcating patriotism is a slow but sure process and pays rich dividends to the posterity.
Let us read aloud the first mantra of the ninth chapter of the Yajurved and then meditate to reach the great heights as well as the unfathomed depth :
DEV SAVITAH PRA SUV YAJYAM PRA SUV YAJYAPATIM BHAGAYA. DIVYO GANDHARVAH KETPUH KETAM NAH PUNATU VACHASPATIRVAJAM NAH SVADATU SWAHA .
Yajurveda 9. 1.
O God ,the great inspirer and the luminous One! Kindly make our Yajna, yajna which bestows on us prosperity, as well as its promoter, the pure beings. Let our teachers, who are masters of speech, make our battles of life palatable to us.
The prime mover of our action is the divine inspiration to act for the good of the society In fact the prayer is for seeking and imbibing inspiration. However, it goes without saying that the soul or the Jeevatma enjoys perfect freedom to act or not to act or to act in a particular fashion. At the end of the mantra the word SWAHA indicates that the aim of winning the battle of life can be achieved through forsaking self-interest. If and when an individual rises above narrow personal and parochial interests, he may say that well begun is half done. The battle of life is half way through and I as a Vedic warrior, am definitely on the winning side. An enlightened individual will always keep the interests of the society before those of the self. Thus there will be no chinks in his armour and the arrow of the enemical evil forces would never be able to pierce the armour to injure the body. Whose body is it? It is the body of the man or the woman who is performing the Yajna and consequently metaphorically speaking, he or she is full of fragrance. It is the fragrance of the good deeds which spreads far and wide.
Therefore, the performer of the Yajna becomes a Gandharva , that is , one who is full of fragrant thought, fragrant emotions and ,of course, fragrant action.
To sum up one may say that human beings have not only to cleanse the outer body but also the inner self. This stupendous task may be performed by reading and meditating on Ved mantras. For a Grihastha or a family man who is ever short of time, the best way to keep the rigorous schedule of making both ends meet and keep the conscience clean is to set apart some time for Sandhya, Havan, Bhajan, Satsang and giving a part of the income in charity to cover the unattended areas of religious obligations. Where there is a will, there is a way. Give yourself a positive signal that this goal is achievable and YOU will definitely achieve the goal.
May Param Pita Parmatma, God Almighty, inspire you to the high pitch where you win every battle of life, today, tomorrow and everyday hereafter.
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