Study Circle 09/10/18
Earning a fat salary is not the chief thing at all; no. The aim should be the cultivation of virtue. Studies are the roots of the tree of life. The attachments which the individual develops towards kith and kin, the objects of the world, the ideals and the goals, the fancies and fashions – all these form the branches and twigs. The blossoms which the tree produces are the intelligence and its manifestations. The blossoms yield the fruit of Aanandham or Joy. The fruit of aanandham confers the sweetness called Character. The essence of character is virtue. It is in virtue that the tree of life justifies itself. The root of education fulfils itself in the fruit of virtue. Without it, life is a waste; it is as much a waste as a tasteless fruit. So, the aim of all study should be the cultivation of good qualities, the development of virtuous habits, the raising of the standard of values, of one’s own self-respect. We say, ‘they study’ or ‘he studies’. What really is the study?
Years of study do not give any idea of the ‘entity’ that studies! The result of study does not reveal itself in character and virtue; the educated person is more prone to temptation and more addicted to evil habits and evil attitudes. The best that can be said of the learned is that they are efficient in the art of argument and cynical discussion and criticism. The real subject of study for men is the study of the means of ending death and birth.
- Why is man attracted to fat salaries rather than the virtues of life?
- Swami says that the aim of all study should be the cultivation of good qualities, the development of virtuous habits, the raising of the standard of values, and of one’s own self-respect. Swami also says that earning a fat salary is not the chief thing at all to do. Reflect a little.
What are some best practices that can help man to be contented as opposed to feverishly working all his life to make more and more money?
Distinguish between essential and non-essential
The question may arise, if there is only one ‘I’, which is the Eternal and the Absolute, why do all the individuals have different experiences? The newly educated worry themselves with such questions. But, they are due to a false cleverness, not deep inquiry. For, the same current activates the fan and gives air, illumines the bulb and gives light, heats the stove and cooks, moves the wheel around and works the machine. The instruments are different, but, the inner energiser is the same. Some bulbs are 40 watts and some 60, or 100 or 1000 watts. The current is the same, but illumination is different. Have a powerful bulb, and the light is strong. Change it, it is dim. Name and form are not essential; the inner current is the truth. Take the body; that itself has the hand as a limb; the hand has fingers, the fingers have nails, in their turn. Through every part of every limb flows the same life force. So too in this Universe which is the Body of God, every being is a part of a limb, that is sustained by the same divine essence. So, resolve now to analyse and honour every one; distinguish between the essential and the non-essential he; and, revere the essential He, the divine He. Of course, the body which is the case for this divine spark has to be guarded and taken care of, until its purpose of self-realisation is fulfilled. But, its nourishment and care should not overshadow the attention due to the mind, its purification and sublimation. Now the body is nourished with tiffin in the morning, lunch at noon, tea at 4 p.m. and dinner at night.
The body is the cart and the mind is the horse that drags it. No food is given to the horse, which is really the more valuable of the two. Give the mind and its culture the importance it deserves; then only is life worth living. The mind has to be hale and hearty, joyous and peaceful, free from agitation. and worries. That can be done by the recitation of some holy name or the performance of some holy act which conduces to welfare. This is the study that will confer lasting joy.
Swami says that the newly educated in their line of questioning sometimes tend to show false cleverness, and not deep inquiry.
Why do you think Swami refers to this as false cleverness, and why do you think this is different from deep inquiry?
- Swami says that in this Universe which is the Body of God, every being is a part of a limb, that is sustained by the same divine essence,
and that we should resolve now to analyse and honour every one; distinguish between the essential and the non-essential he; and, revere the essential He, the divine He.
What are some best practices that can help us to distinguish the essential He, and the non-essential he in an individual?
Affirmation: I am content
Life Application skill: Please come up with one based on today’s reading