Hinduism simplified for today's generation

Archive for June, 2011

The value of Satsang (good and virtuous company)

I will quote a few lines from the Uddhava Gita to make my point. The value of good and virtuous company is evident from this teaching of Lord Krishna:

Lord Krishna tells Uddhava the secret of spiritual enlightenment. He says that neither yoga nor sankhya, or dharma or recitation of scriptures, or taking of sanyasa (renunciation), social work or charitable acts, fasting, ritual worship or repetition of mantras or pilgrimage or upholding of principles and ideas will bring your mind under control as quickly as association with the wise. Satsang has been the elevation and the source of enlightenment of many. The perfect example other than of Hanuman, Jatayu, Prahlad is of the Gopis who tended cows and played with Lord Krishna in childhood, knew nothing of the scriptures or of holy mantras, all they had was absolute love for the company of Krishna. That association led them to complete absorption in divinity and enlightenment.

Even if we compare the value of Satsang with today’s world, isn’t it apparent that we get influenced by the company we keep. A person who has tasted alcohol but is not an alcoholic, in the company of alcoholics will become one easily unless he has a very strong control over his mind, similarly a person in the company of the wise will gain a lot of wisdom observing them and understanding their thoughts. Satsang is the most easily available tool for spiritual enlightenment and not only that but it will certainly help you live a life of peace and contentment.

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How to use the power of Gunas to our advantage?

I wrote a bit about the different Gunas namely Sattva Guna, Rajo Guna and Tamo Guna. These Gunas are part of what we are. Our emotions our feelings our desires are influenced in some way or the other by these Gunas.

Let’s take Sattva Guna – when this Guna is predominant the person experiences calmness and contentment, one is able to take right decisions and stay alert and responsive to life events and select the best course of actions. This is what makes Sattva Guna so special. We all should cultivate Sattva Guna to get ourselves in tune with nature, our own being and the Brahman, infinite Divinity. You can keep Sattva Guna predominant by cultivating virtuous habits and eating fresh, nourishing and juicy food. Also one should select  Sattvic activities that are profitable to the Soul, rather than for sense enjoyment. So, now lets say one feels restless, then in that case Rajo Guna has become predominant. To go back to Sattva Guna one needs to calm down the restless thoughts and activities. Listening to soft and relaxing music helps. Also talking a walk in a park would be helpful. These are just few tips. You can experiment with different activities and find out what suits you best. Now, let’s say you are feeling sleepy and weak or sluggish, this could be because of eating tamasic food or because of bodily weakness. In this case the suggestion given is to do some rigorous activity like playing basketball or going out for jogging or dancing etc. This will build up Rajo Guna and make you restless and active. Once you have cultivated Rajo Guna one should do activities that are more conducive to Sattva Guna.

Thus by taking advantage of the nature of Gunas given in the above examples and experimenting on your own you can better your life and make it more productive for your Soul and thereby experience happiness and share it with everyone around you.