The Vedanta Way of Life
Wisdom from the Vedic sages :- For thousands of years our vedas have inspired people to find solutions to the problems of life and reach for higher fulfillment. I have studied Vedanta for two years at the renowned Chinmaya Mission. I would like to share the philosophy of Vedanta and what it means to me through the platform of Kaashi wellness.
What is life?
Life is a play of para ( energy) and prakriti.(illusionary expression of the world of shapes and form’s)
Maya’s ( appearance of the phenomenal world) impact on the jiva atma ( individual self)is so steadfast that it deludes the jiva to be the self. The veil of ignorance on the jivatma makes the individual unaware of its true nature which is the param atma.
When the jiva atma is deluded, it becomes a slave to its limited mind that is impure, and pulls itself to self destruction by harnessing raag (craving), devesh (aversion), kaam (lust), krodh (anger) and madh (attachment). The mind which is in jadh (inertia) state becomes like a graveyard. It is constantly unhappy and searching for happiness outside itself and engages itself into constant addiction to the outer world.
What is the relationship between para and prakriti?
Para is the all prevailing self, which is of the nature of knowledge, peace, joy and expresses itself with the prakriti — the big mind.
When the small mind in the jiva atma becomes more dominant, it does not allow the big mind to express itself. This is due to lack of knowledge of the self. When knowledge of the self strengthens, the small mind takes a backseat and the big mind takes the wheel of life and the jivatma blossoms and expresses itself to its full potential, and moksha i.e. jivan mukti (freedom from life and death while you’re in the body) commences.
How to attain the state where the BIG mind takes the driving seat?
This can be done by means of inquiry and by clearing all the knots caused by the small mind. These knots are assumptions.
Believing that the body will receive bhoga (pleasure) by indulging in worldly pleasures like party etc.and wishes to acquire these pleasures by wrong means.
A human body is the supreme of all the births. Only in this body can realisation of the self is possible.
The body needs to be looked after carefully by performing saucha i.e. cleaning the body everyday with not just soap and water but also yoga and asanas.
The second assumption is not realising that the knowledge of the universe is in our breath — No breath, no body. One can attain victory over emotions and feeling with the help of pranayama and right breathing techniques. Make sure your stomach expands while you breathe in and contracts when you breathe out.
The small mind is always on a lookout for short term gain and is constantly deluded. It firmly believes that the pleasure to the gross body is the true pleasure and eventually feels contracted due to indulgence and anticipation, not allowing the victory of the big mind.
To keep the small mind in control, one must constantly seek knowledge through upanishads, puranas and a guru. One must also constantly practice japa (chant) the holy name of the lord to purify the deluded mind.
One must purify their intellect by conducting acts of kindness. This will help them experience the vastness within. The mind experiences happiness when the act is carried out without the expectation of fruits, thus experiencing the para through oneself.
Memory is an impediment in the process of purification. The bitter and pleasurable experiences do not allow the mind to be in the present moment — this makes the mind impure. Through guided meditation one can purify intelligect.
Ego is the most difficult to balance as it is the root cause of false identification of the jivatma. It is the veil of ignorance which deludes oneself by the false knowledge of jivatma and hence aiding indulgence of bhoga.
The veil of ignorance can only be removed by two ways -
1. Only the bramha gyani (master) can lead us on the path of gyan.
2. Practicing all the above mentioned points will make us eligible to receive the grace of the guru.
At kaashi wellness we strive to pass on this experience to you with through our wellness programs.