Wednesday, August 15, 2012

VI: 24

Chapter 6, Verse 24

"Abandoning without reserve
All desires born of selfishness,
They learn how to gather the unruly senses
Into the harmony of recollection."

Paramahansa Yogananda:

To reach the inner sanctum of God's Presence, Yogis focus the inwardly turned attention, so that it is not seized by the bandits of outer sensations, nor by the villains of overpowering, restless thoughts and desires that lurk on the path of concentration.  Yogis do not allow themselves to ruminate upon material objects, which include planning material activities for the fulfillment of desired ends.  They renounce, without reserve, all such desires born of egoistic mental scheming.  When the mind is singularly concentrated, all distractions are arrested.  Until such interiorization becomes established once and for all, persistent practice is the prescription.

Srila Prabhupada:

As for determination, you may follow the example of the sparrow who lost her eggs in the waves of the ocean.  A sparrow laid her eggs on the shore of the ocean, but the big ocean carried away the eggs on its waves.  The sparrow was very upset and asked the ocean to return the eggs.  The ocean did not even consider her appeal.  So the sparrow tried to dry up the ocean.  She began to scoop up some water in her beak, and everyone laughed at her behavior.

News of her activity spread, and Garuda, the gigantic bird-carrier of Lord Vishnu, heard about it.  He felt compassion toward his small, sister bird, and so he came to see the sparrow.  Garuda was most pleased by the determination of the small sparrow, and he promised to help.  Garuda then asked the ocean to return the eggs, lest he take up the work of the sparrow as well.  The ocean was frightened by the prospect and returned the eggs.  The sparrow was grateful for the grace of Garuda.

The practice of Yoga may appear to be a very difficult job.  But if someone follows the principles with determination, the Lord will surely help, for God helps those who help themselves.

A friend:

I love the story of the sparrow.  From now onwards, I am going to be the sparrow till the end of my life, which means, "Keep on trying."

Another friend:

I pray that all great knowledge and wisdom be understood with clarity and enthusiasm.  Meditation on the scriptures and the path will lead us to a full and compassionate life.  It is in the effort and intention of doing good that wisdom is born.

[Bringing enthusiasm into the conversation reminds us that underlying it is an awareness that using terms like journey and destination present to the mind a false division.  This wisdom-awareness brings even more enthusiasm for treading the path and motivates us, moment by moment, to walk with awareness of the One Light.]

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