Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from September, 2015

Karma-Yoga : Ch-8. Part-8.

Karma-Yoga

CHAPTER VIII

THE IDEAL OF KARMA-YOGA

Part-8.

Now comes the next question : -

What is this work?

What is this doing good to the world?

Can we do good to the world?

In an absolute sense, no; in a relative sense, yes.

No permanent or everlasting good can be done to the world;

if it could be done, the world would not be this world.

We may satisfy the hunger of a man for five minutes, but he will be hungry again.

Every pleasure with which we supply a man may be seen to be momentary.

No one can permanently cure this ever-recurring fever of pleasure and pain.

Can any permanent happiness be given to the world?

Swami Vivekananda
To be continued  ...



Karma-Yoga : Ch-8. Part-7.

Karma-Yoga

CHAPTER VIII

THE IDEAL OF KARMA-YOGA

Part-7.

But whatever be the source from which it is derived, their code of ethics also has the same central idea — not to think of self but to give up self.

And yet some persons, in spite of this high ethical idea, are frightened at the thought of having to give up their little personalities.

We may ask the man who clings to the idea of little personalities to consider the case of a person who has become perfectly unselfish, who has no thought for himself, who does no deed for himself, who speaks no word for himself, and then say where his "himself" is.

That "himself" is known to him only so long as he thinks, acts, or speaks for himself.

If he is only conscious of others, of the universe, and of the all, where is his "himself"? It is gone for ever.


Karma-Yoga, therefore, is a system of ethics and religion intended to attain freedom through unselfishness, and by good works.

The Karma-Yogi need not believe i…

Karma-Yoga : Ch-8. Part-6.

Karma-Yoga

CHAPTER VIII

THE IDEAL OF KARMA-YOGA

Part-6.

But, if you come to details, the matter will not be seen to be quite so simple.

For instance, environment often makes the details different as I have already mentioned.

The same action under one set of circumstances may be unselfish, and under another set quite selfish.

So we can give only a general definition, and leave the details to be worked out by taking into consideration the differences in time, place, and circumstances.

In one country one kind of conduct is considered moral, and in another the very same is immoral, because the circumstances differ.

The goal of all nature is freedom, and freedom is to be attained only by perfect unselfishness; every thought, word, or deed that is unselfish takes us towards the goal, and, as such, is called moral.

That definition, you will find, holds good in every religion and every system of ethics. In some systems of thought morality is derived from a Superior Being — God. If you ask wh…

Karma-Yoga : Ch-8. Part-5.

Karma-Yoga

CHAPTER VIII

THE IDEAL OF KARMA-YOGA

Part-5.

 The personalist, when he hears this idea philosophically put, gets frightened.

At the same time, if he preaches morality, he after all teaches the very same idea himself.

He puts no limit to the unselfishness of man.

Suppose a man becomes perfectly unselfish under the personalistic system, how are we to distinguish him from the perfected ones in other system?

He has become one with the universe and to become that is the goal of all; only the poor personalist has not the courage to follow out his own reasoning to its right conclusion.

Karma-Yoga is the attaining through unselfish work of that freedom which is the goal of all human nature.

Every selfish action, therefore, retards our reaching the goal,

and every unselfish action takes us towards the goal;

that is why the only definition that can be given of morality is this : -

That which is selfish is immoral, and that which is unselfish is moral.

Swami Vivekananda
To be continu…

Karma-Yoga : Ch-8. Part-4.

Karma-Yoga

CHAPTER VIII

THE IDEAL OF KARMA-YOGA

Part-4.

The personalist, when he hears this idea philosophically put, gets frightened.

At the same time, if he preaches morality, he after all teaches the very same idea himself.

He puts no limit to the unselfishness of man.

Suppose a man becomes perfectly unselfish under the personalistic system, how are we to distinguish him from the perfected ones in other system?

He has become one with the universe and to become that is the goal of all; only the poor personalist has not the courage to follow out his own reasoning to its right conclusion.

Karma-Yoga is the attaining through unselfish work of that freedom which is the goal of all human nature.

Every selfish action, therefore, retards our reaching the goal, and every unselfish action takes us towards the goal; that is why the only definition that can be given of morality is this :

That which is selfish is immoral, and that which is unselfish is moral.

Swami Vivekananda
To be continued …

Karma-Yoga : Ch-8. Part-3.

CHAPTER VIII

THE IDEAL OF KARMA-YOGA

Part-3.

There is to be found in every religion the manifestation of this struggle towards freedom.

It is the groundwork of all morality, of unselfishness, which means getting rid of the idea that men are the same as their little body.

When we see a man doing good work, helping others, it means that he cannot be confined within the limited circle of "me and mine".

There is no limit to this getting out of selfishness.

All the great systems of ethics preach absolute unselfishness as the goal.

Supposing this absolute unselfishness can be reached by a man, what becomes of him?

He is no more the little Mr. So-and-so; he has acquired infinite expansion.

The little personality which he had before is now lost to him for ever; he has become infinite, and the attainment of this infinite expansion is indeed the goal of all religions and of all moral and philosophical teachings.

Swami Vivekananda
To be continued  ...



Karma-Yoga : Ch-8. Part-2.

CHAPTER VIII

THE IDEAL OF KARMA-YOGA

Part-2.

I have already tried to point out that goal.

It is freedom as I understand it.

Everything that we perceive around us is struggling towards freedom, from the atom to the man, from the insentient, lifeless particle of matter to the highest existence on earth, the human soul.

The whole universe is in fact the result of this struggle for freedom.

In all combinations every particle is trying to go on its own way, to fly from the other particles; but the others are holding it in check.

Our earth is trying to fly away from the sun, and the moon from the earth.

Everything has a tendency to infinite dispersion.

All that we see in the universe has for its basis this one struggle towards freedom; it is under the impulse of this tendency that the saint prays and the robber robs.

When the line of action taken is not a proper one, we call it evil; and when the manifestation of it is proper and high, we call it good.

But the impulse is the same, the stru…

Karma-Yoga : Ch-8. Part-1.

CHAPTER VIII

THE IDEAL OF KARMA-YOGA

Part-1.

The grandest idea in the religion of the Vedanta is that we may reach the same goal by different paths; and these paths I have generalised into four, viz those of work, love, psychology, and knowledge.

But you must, at the same time, remember that these divisions are not very marked and quite exclusive of each other.

Each blends into the other.

But according to the type which prevails, we name the divisions.

It is not that you can find men who have no other faculty than that of work, nor that you can find men who are no more than devoted worshippers only, nor that there are men who have no more than mere knowledge.

These divisions are made in accordance with the type or the tendency that may be seen to prevail in a man.

We have found that, in the end, all these four paths converge and become one.

All religions and all methods of work and worship lead us to one and the same goal.

Swami Vivekananda
To be continued  ...




Karma-Yoga : Ch-7. Part-17.

CHAPTER VII .
FREEDOM : :

Part-17.

We cannot.

We only help ourselves in this gymnasium of the world.

This is the proper attitude of work.

If we work in this way, if we always remember that our present opportunity to work thus is a privilege which has been given to us, we shall never be attached to anything.

Millions like you and me think that we are great people in the world; but we all die, and in five minutes the world forgets us.

But the life of God is infinite.

"Who can live a moment, breathe a moment, if this all-powerful One does not will it?"

He is the ever active Providence.

All power is His and within His command.

Through His command the winds blow, the sun shines, the earth lives, and death stalks upon the earth.

He is the all in all; He is all and in all.

We can only worship Him.

Give up all fruits of work; do good for its own sake; then alone will come perfect non-attachment.

The bonds of the heart will thus break, and we shall reap perfect freedom.

This freedom…

Karma-Yoga : Ch-7. Part-16.

CHAPTER VII .
FREEDOM : :

Part-16.

These Sattvika men are too near the Lord to be active and to fight, to be working, struggling, preaching and doing good, as they say, here on earth to humanity.

The active workers, however good, have still a little remnant of ignorance left in them.

When our nature has yet some impurities left in it, then alone can we work.

It is in the nature of work to be impelled ordinarily by motive and by attachment.

In the presence of an ever active Providence who notes even the sparrow's fall, how can man attach any importance to his own work?

Will it not be a blasphemy to do so when we know that He is taking care of the minutest things in the world?

We have only to stand in awe and reverence before Him saying, "Thy will be done".

The highest men cannot work, for in them there is no attachment.

Those whose whole soul is gone into the Self, those whose desires are confined in the Self, who have become ever associated with the Self, for them there…

Karma-Yoga : Ch-7. Part-15.

CHAPTER VII .
FREEDOM : :

Part-15.

Next in order come the men with more Rajas, or activity, combative natures, who take up the ideas of the perfect ones and preach them to the world.

The highest kind of men silently collect true and noble ideas, and others — the Buddhas and Christs — go from place to place preaching them and working for them.

In the life of Gautama Buddha we notice him constantly saying that he is the twenty-fifth Buddha.

The twenty-four before him are unknown to history, although the Buddha known to history must have built upon foundations laid by them.

The highest men are calm, silent, and unknown.

They are the men who really know the power of thought; they are sure that, even if they go into a cave and close the door and simply think five true thoughts and then pass away, these five thoughts of theirs will live through eternity.

Indeed such thoughts will penetrate through the mountains, cross the oceans, and travel through the world.

They will enter deep into huma…

Karma-Yoga : Ch-7. Part-14.

CHAPTER VII .
FREEDOM : :

Part-14.

The Buddhas and the Christs that we know are but second-rate heroes in comparison with the greatest men of whom the world knows nothing.

Hundreds of these unknown heroes have lived in every country working silently.

Silently they live and silently they pass away; and in time their thoughts find expression in Buddhas or Christs, and it is these latter that become known to us.

The highest men do not seek to get any name or fame from their knowledge.

They leave their ideas to the world; they put forth no claims for themselves and establish no schools or systems in their name.

Their whole nature shrinks from such a thing.

They are the pure Sattvikas, who can never make any stir, but only melt down in love.

I have seen one such Yogi who lives in a cave in India.

He is one of the most wonderful men I have ever seen.

He has so completely lost the sense of his own individuality that we may say that the man in him is completely gone, leaving behind only the …