Guiding Light by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Dispassion and desire

What is Desire? The word spells everything you have been taught, and yet unknowingly or knowingly, all of you have the term dancing through your eyes, minds and even hearts. Most of you probably know that it is the play of desire that could take you away from your selves.

As long as some desires linger in your mind, you cannot be at total rest. Lord Krishna says in the Bhagavad Gita, ‘You cannot get into Yoga (union with the self) unless you drop the desires or hankerings in you’. Every desire or ambition is like a sand particle in the eye! You cannot shut your eyes nor keep them open with a sand particle inside - it is uncomfortable either way. Dispassion is removing this sand particle so you can open and shut your eyes freely! The other way is to extend your desire, or make it so big - then also it will not bother you. It is a tiny sand particle that irritates your eyes - a big rock can never get into your eyes!

To shed desire, you need to embrace it with all your heart. Be willing to accept all that your mind realizes and your heart feels. After desire gets fulfilled, It will lead you to the very same place where you were before the desire rose in you.

So how to deal with desires? Just do not give too much weight to the fulfillment of desires. You have no control over the desires. Desires come up. Instead of holding on to them, or daydreaming, just offer the desires. Just surrender it in its complete form. When you offer everything as it arises in you, then nothing can take you away from your centre. Otherwise, small things can shake you and you become sad or upset.

But surrender doesn’t mean the absence of action. Don’t just make an affirmation and say “Okay, I shall have a good job” and let go of it and do nothing about it. You need to do whatever is necessary to be done. Give all your actions that are required from you. Be active; be dynamic, but not obsessed with the feverishness about fulfilling the desires, because that is the ultimate root cause of depression. Act, surrender and be free.

With dispassion, you can enjoy the world freely and relax. Dispassion can bring so much joy in your life. Do not think that dispassion is a state of apathy. Dispassion is full of enthusiasm - it brings all joy to your life and allows you to rest so well.

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