Thursday, September 8, 2016


Q: To keep the mind in the Self one must have no desires for anything other than the Self. This is a very difficult state to attain. The desire to seek pleasures in the outside world always seems to be stronger than the desire to seek pleasure in the Self. Why is this so?

All happiness ultimately comes from the Self. It does not come from the mind, the body or from external objects. If you have a great desire for a mango, when you finally eat one there is a great feeling of pleasure. When a desire like this is fulfilled, the mind sinks a little way into the Self and enjoys some of the bliss that is always present there. Then it rises again. It remembers the happiness and tries to repeat the experience by eating more mangoes or by gratifying other desires.

Most people are completely unaware that pleasure and happiness come from the Self, not from the mind or the body. Because most people have only experience the peace of the self when a great desire has been fulfilled, they come to the conclusion that the pursuit of desires is the only way to get an experience of happiness or peace. 

If you try to follow this standard route to happiness you will end up with a lot of frustration and a lot of suffering. You may occasionally experience a few brief moments of pleasure, but for the rest of the time you will be experiencing the pain of frustrated desires, of desires which don't seem to produce any pleasure when they are fulfilled.

If you try to repeat pleasures again and again the novelty soon wears off. A mango, which you have been looking forward to for days, may give you a few seconds of happiness when you eat it, but your pleasure will not be prolonged by eating five or six more. Prolonged indulgence is more likely to produce pain than pleasure.

Most people in the world spend their whole lives self-indulgently pursuing goals which they think will produce happiness for them. Most of these people never stop to do their mental accounts properly. If they did they would realise that each ten seconds of happiness if followed by hours or days when there is no happiness. Some people do realise this, but instead of giving up this way of life, they indulge in it even more. They think that with a little more effort and little more sensory, mental or emotional indulgence they can expand the short periods of happiness and contract the longer intervening periods when happiness is not experienced.

This approach never works. If there are many strong desires in the mind, the mind cannot sink completely into the Self and experience the full peace and bliss that is there. The mind may experience a little of that peace if a great desire is suddenly fulfilled, but it will only be a brief, temporary experience. The mind cannot stay in the Self while it is full of desires and activities. It will rise again after a fee seconds and begin to pursue its next external goal.

The desire-filled mind only experiences the bliss of the Self in a very diluted form. If you want the full bliss of the Self, and if you want to experience it permanently, you will have to give up all your desires and attachments. There is no other way. The mind cannot rest quietly in the depths of the Self until it has learned to ignore all the impulses that try to make it look for pleasure and satisfaction in the outside world. 

All desires can cause you trouble, even spiritual ones. Sometimes, evan a desire to meditate can be a hindrance. 

Bhagavan looking at my desire for meditation said, 

'Why have even these desires? What is to be has already been determined. Be still, be without desire and let whatever is to be come to be'

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