Faith

Control of senses

Lord Krishna says in the Gita that we should do our duties, but never think of ourselves as the doers. We should never be attached to the results, for we do not have the adhikarah (right) to the results. If we fail to do our duties, we will anger the Lord. However, if we do that which is prohibited, we will incur the Lord’s anger, said V. Sowmyanarayanan in a discourse. The Lord then tells Arjuna that he must not be attached to relatives, or to wealth. His mind must remain the same — samabhUtvA — regardless of whether he meets with success or failure. Action not performed with this state of mind is of an inferior nature (dUreNa avaram). One should be a sthita pragnya, says Lord Krishna.

A sthita pragnya, is one whose mind remains calm and unperturbed. He is not overjoyed when something desirable happens. Nor is he dejected and sorrowful when something disastrous happens. A sthita pragnya has control over his five senses. Such a man is compared to a tortoise. A tortoise can draw its head and four limbs into its shell whenever it senses danger. We find a similar idea in Thirukkural. The Kural says that if in one birth a man becomes adept at controlling his five senses, then it will serve as a great protection to him in future births. The Kural also gives the tortoise comparison. A sthita pragnya does not care for the comforts of life. He is quite content to sleep on the hard floor. He does not need a quilt to sleep on. Costly clothes hold no attraction for him.

Surya drives around on a one wheeled chariot, and yet he never once loses balance. We should be like Surya. Equanimity of temper is repeatedly stressed throughout the Gita. We must not be caught in dualities like joy and sorrow and like and dislike.


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Printable version | Sep 24, 2021 6:25:51 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/society/faith/control-of-senses/article32440686.ece

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