Day 4 take away-
Dharma leading to Moksha- Inspiring talk by swami Swaroopananda on the final day concluding the powerful message of Mahabharata
- When Artha and Kama are attained through dharma, then this dharma leads to freedom or moksha.
- Our greatest happiness lies in our progeny. What is our intention and attitude in the upbringing of our children? Other than our own benefit we must see how we benefit the society. We need not be totally selfless, but we can atleast add in our intent some benefit for the society as well. We have to integrate this attitude of making a difference and benefit the society and people around us in all our work and day to day activities. There need not be a separate time or place to do some good for the society. It should become part of our lives.
- With greed, jealousy and such other inner enemies we lose relationships and love which is much more valuable than other material wealth. Yudhistra did whatever possible to maintain the relationship whereas Duryodhana did the total opposite. Wealth cannot buy true friends. If we think of doing something good, we must do it right away before the mind starts changing and if anything wrong we should postpone it as far as possible. When Duryodhana was defeated and caught by the gandharvas in the forest, Yudishtra asked his brothers to help Duryodhana despite whatever he had done to them. For some time Duryodhana felt depressed and even wondered at the goodness of Yudishtra; but that was momentary and short lived. Many times our minds are like that, the negativity is so much that a ray of positivity is just put off under the heap of negative attitudes.
- All the 12 years of exile Bhima and also Draupadi at times pointed out Yudhistra’s weakness in retaliating back to Duryodhana. They were not very happy at his extreme patience and tolerance. But it was Arjuna who respected his older brother very much to say anything against him. Instead of berating, cribbing and complaining he was silently preparing for the inevitable war which he knew would come one day. He was busy collecting weapons from all great sages and Lord Shiva as well. This showed Arjuna’s purity of heart and dedication. The learning here is that in times of difficulties instead of blaming and complaining, we must prepare ourselves to face the situation bravely, calmly waiting for the right moment.
- Patience is a great virtue. Many under estimate the patience of others just like Draupadi did of Yudishtra. She was of the opinion that people would consider her husband; the Emperor Yudishtra to be weak and wanted him to express his wrath. Yudhistra with his noble qualities knew that it was not the right time as any wrong step taken at their time of exile would turns the tables against them. (Duryodhana and his people were waiting for the moment when Pandavas would fail their commitment of 12 years of exile and the 13th year of incognito). After their exile and incognito the pandavas could claim back their right and if Duryodhana did not then yield for anything, Yudhistra was ready for the war. Patience gives us time to analyse the situation and take the right decision.
- Adversities come for a reason. Patience is the strength with which we should handle adversities. Patience needs a calm mind, Mind can be kept calm in the company of the good and holy.
- Draupadi was very much loved by all her husbands, the reason being she was so dedicated to them and never made any of them feel that they were second to anyone. She performed the duties as expected by an ideal wife. She followed her dharma.
- Krishna had promised Draupadi that the Kauravas would have to face the consequences of their misconduct with Draupadi. He told her to be patient and after their exile and incognito he himself would be the messenger and take proposal of truce to Duryodhana.
- Duryodhana was furious, jealous and very unhappy that the Pandavas had managed successfully through the exile period and incognito. So when Krishna came with the message of truce, he was not at all happy. Duryodhana refused to give back the kingdom or even just 5 villages to the Pandavas. When he said that he would not give even a needle point of land to their cousins and wanted to entrap Krishna and take him in his custody; Krishna showed His viraat swaroop to Dhritarashtra and Duryodhana which shook them up.
- After this Krishna met Karna and told him about Kunti being his mother and asked him to join his brothers the Pandavas side, but Karna had taken a firm stand that he would never give up the side of Duryodhana as he was the only one who helped him when he was publicly humiliated. Soon Kunti also met Karna and kept the same request. It was Karna’s highest quality that he was so generous and anyone who came to him after his morning prayers to the sun and ask him for anything he would gladly give it away. So how could he refuse his mother? He promised her that he would spare her 4 sons and fight only with Arjuna. The Pandavas would always be five; either he or Arjuna. He kept up his promise when he spared the lives of Yudishtra and other brothers in the war. He did his dharma as a friend and also as a son kept his promise. Each one of us has good and bad in us. We should never let the bad suppress the good in us.
- After the war was declared both Duryodhana and Arjuna went to seek Lord Krishna’s help. Krishna was resting at that time and Duryodhana sat by his head and Arjuna by his feet. As soon as Krishna opened the eyes he saw Arjuna first and asked him what he wanted. Duryodhana was upset that despite his coming first Arjuna was given the choice; but he was happy when Arjuna asked only for Krishna to be by his side in the war though Krishna had told them that he would not take up any weapons and Duryodhana could get the help of the whole Dwaraka army. We are all like Duryodhanas always asking God for trivial things rather than God himself. When God is by us all other things will be with us, but we don’t realise that.
- The essence of dharma which takes one to freedom is fighting for our goal or for the sake of society for a cause. That’s when dharma leads to freedom or moksha.When all doors to peace were closed and dharma completely collapsed Krishna declared war. Similarly when the mind is so disturbed with negativities we need to fight that out with making the positives in us stronger and take the positivity to victory, so that we are at peace.
- Krishna taught the Gita to Arjuna in the battle field when he refused to fight against his grandsire, guru, and cousins. Krishna told Arjuna that only the unwise grieve and waste whole life grieving for our body. It is worth living only when we live for a holy or good cause. “You are a fearless warrior; go and fight.” Self is neither born nor dies. Atma is eternal and infinite. We are fearful, full of anxiety, concerns, worries etc because we don’t realise that we are immortal, we never die even when the body dies. Let us know our duty. Duty to serve. Let’s know our true nature.
- If the goal is noble and high, with all your love, ability, talents and dedication do your best and even when you die in the process you will attain fame. To work like this one must be free of anxieties, excitement and live in the present. Higher power will guide us. The Lord has said; ‘Anayas chintayanthomam’. Those who do their duty just thinking about Me constantly, I will always be with them, guiding them and protecting them. I will never allow them to perish.” We must hand over the chariot of our life to Lord Krishna and have single pointed faith in him, do our duty and leave the rest to him. We must just be the ‘nimit matr’-humble instruments in His hand and attain glory. The beauty is that the Lord takes over and does everything and by using us as an instrument gives us glory.
- Honesty is for Dharma. Law and spirit of law is to protect dharma. When one reads Mahabharata one feels that unfair means were employed to kill Duryodhana, Karna etc and laws of the war were not followed, but this was started by the Kauravas who mercilessly killed the brave Abhimanyu when he was stuck in the ‘chakravyu’ all alone. That was totally unfair to the young boy who was surrounded by so many valiant warriors. Then it becomes that everything is far in love and war. There were no more rules to follow then.
- One must not live dharma only for themselves but also for others for the larger benefit of the society even at the cost of our principles if it brings peace to the society.
- Mahabharata has shown us that if one follows dharma like Yudhistra who did everything for the wellbeing and peace and harmony of the society, he will attain the highest. Yudhistra was the only one who could reach heaven in his physical body. Lord was also not unfair to Karna also as most of us feel. He created such a situation that when Karna was helpless, Krishna asked Arjuna to kill him and thus Karna was declared a hero as he was not given a right opportunity to face Arjuna. Krishna as well as Karna knew that Karna would never have won the battle even if he fought very bravely with Arjuna because Krishna was on the side of Arjuna and where Krishna is; victory is assured. That is why when we have God by our side, victory will be ours. Lord knows the best.
- Lord says ‘Sarva dharman parityajya’; when you surrender to me completely I free you from all the anxieties. If we have faith, dedication, devotion and surrender to the Lord, victory will be ours. Where there is Dharma there is victory and where there is dharma, Krishna is there. ‘Yatra yogeswaro Krishno’ where there is knowledge of Krishna and readiness of Arjuna, there is bound to be victory. Spiritual knowledge and practise of it leads to victory.
So it’s a clarion call to all us Arjunas out here to be ready to act with all our abilities, talents, skills and dedication for a holy cause for larger benefit of the society in whatever capacity we can and always keeping Lord by our side constantly remembering Him, we will then see how we emerge victorious in whatever we do. And using us as His instruments He will help us attain glory and the purpose of our life. So let us all be ready to awaken the Arjuna within us.