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CONTENTMENT & COURAGE

16-favorite-contentment-quotes-14-728Contentment

There is no greater gain than contentment. A man who is fully endowed with this important virtue is the richest man in all the three worlds.

Contentment is one of the important items in the Niyamas of the Raja Yoga philosophy. The Gita also says: “Be contented with whatever you get by chance and apply yourself to meditation with a dispassionate mind.”

Greed is the Chief Officer of Passion. Wherever there is greed, there is passion and wherever there is passion there is greed almost invariably. The understanding gets clouded, the intellect gets perverted and the memory gets confused by passion and greed. Therefore people find it difficult to develop the virtue of contentment.

An objector says: “I quite realise that contentment gives peace. But I have a doubt. lf I become contented, all my ambitions will die. I will become lethargic and lazy. On account of my various sorts of ambitions, I move about hither and tithel I exert and I am energetic.” My reply is simply this: “Contentment can never make you idle. lt is a Sattvic virtue that propels man towards God. lt gives strength of mind and peace. lt checks unnecessary and selfish exertions. lt transmutes the gross energy viz., greed that is forcing man towards selfish exertions into spiritual energy, Ojas. That man who is contented is full of Sattva. He is more energetic now. He is inward. He is always peaceful. He turns out more work calmly and with one-pointed mind. All the dissipated rays of the mind are collected now.

A contented mind is the greatest blessing a man can enjoy in this world. lt has a beneficial influence on the soul of man. lt destroys all inordinate ambitions, all murmuring, repining, and makes one serene, happy and rich. lt is a pearl of inestimable value. Contentment is the best tonic. lt is the best medicine. lt gives best health and peace of mind.

A contented man is never poor. The discontented man is never rich. Be always contented with what happens. Know that what God chooses is better than what you choose.
lf you are not contented with what you have, you will not be contented with what you like to have.
Contentment is natural wealth. Luxury is artificial poverty.
Abandon all desires. Desire only the will of God. Seek Him alone. You will find perfect contentment, peace and bliss.
lf you increase your wealth, you increase your cares, worries ahd anxietes. But a contented mind is a hidden, supreme treasure. A man of contented mind knows not cares and anxieties.
A contented man is easy in mind. He does not repine. He is satisfled with things as they are. He never complains.

Contentment is the best virtue; contentment is called the true enjoyment; and the contented man gets the best repose. He derives happiness from within. lt is a panacea forthe cure of the dire disease-avarice or greed.

O man! Lead a life of perfect contentment and be happy forever. Live in God who is Nitya Triptior Supreme satisfaction or Contentment.

images (3)COURAGE

It is the quality that enables men to meet dangers without fear. Courage enlarges your resources but cowardice diminishes them.

No spiritual progress is possible without courage. courage is an essential of high character. There cannot be truth without courage, you cannot do anything in this world without courage.

Physical courage depends upon bodily strength and intrepidity. Moral courage is that quality which enables one to pursue a course deemed right through which one may incur contempt, disapproval or opprobrium.

True courage is not the brutal force of vulgar heroes, but the firm resolve oivirtue and reason.

Have the courage of your convictions. Have the courage to act up to or consistently with your views or opinions.

lf you have courage and confidence, you can accomplish anything in this world. Courage is the source of all success. You have strength in proportion to courage. Your abirity to perform deeds is in accordance with your courage and confidence.

You may have courage when everything is going right; but it is difficult to have courage in times of panic and danger. The really courageous man is one who knows no fear when danger is on his heels and helps others with a calm attitude of mind.

Meditate ceaselessly on the absolutely fearless Atman or the lmmortal soul that dwells in the chambers of your heart. You will become an embodiment of courage.

Excerpts from “HOW TO CULTIVATE VIRTUES AND ERADICATE VICES” by Sri Swami Sivananda

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Seeker after Liberation (pt.#8)

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On Rational Inquiry

Reasoning serves to destroy the false apparitions of errors which present themselves to the minds of children like ghosts in the night sky. Men torment themselves with the false imaginations of their own minds. Only reason can drive away this deeply rooted apparition from the mind.

Know that the fruit of the high tree of reason is the even, unobstructed, interminable and independent happiness called perfect detachment (kaivalya). When a saint has reached his perfection by means of the elixir of judgment seated in his mind, he neither desires  for more nor leaves (what he has). A mind relying on that state of equanimity and perceiving the clear light has neither its fall nor elevation, but enjoys its inward expansion like that of vacuum forever.

One unconcerned with the world neither gives nor receives anything, nor feels himself elated or depressed at any event, but views everything as an indifferent spectator. He is neither numbingly cold nor does he dwell on anything internally or externally. He is not inactive or merged in activity. He slights the loss of anything and lives content with what he has. He is neither depressed nor elevated, but remains as full as the sea.

Men with their minds illuminated by the light of reason are like travelers acquainted with their way. They are not liable to pitfalls of constant danger and misery. It is by means of reason that one comes to the knowledge of truth, and by means of truth that he gets peace of mind, and it is tranquility of mind that dispels the misery of men.
Now Rama, take delight in such acts as may be productive of utility to the world, and whereby you may arrive to perfection. Weigh all things with the clear eye of reason, which will make you blessed forever.

On Contentment

Those who are happy with their prosperity of contentment and possess the calm repose of their souls are like holy saints. They think a kingdom no better than a bit of rotten straw.
Whoever retains a contented mind amidst all the affairs of the world is never disturbed or dejected in adverse circumstances, O Rama.
Abandonment of unfruitful desires, and calmness in those desires that are obtained, feeling no pain and having no sense of pleasure, constitute what is called contentment.
Until the mind can enjoy contentment rising of itself spontaneously in the soul, troubles will continue to grow like briars and brambles in a bog. The mind cooled by calm contentment and purified by the light of philosophy is always in its full bloom like a lotus under sunbeams.
An ungoverned mind, subject to desires and devoid of contentment, does not receive the light of knowledge, like a soiled mirror takes no reflection of the face.  A man whose mind is always bright with the sunshine of contentment does not shrivel like a lotus in the dark night of ignorance. A man devoid of diseases and anxieties, whose mind is content though he be thoroughly poor, enjoys the happiness of a supreme ruler.

On the Company of the Virtuous

It is the tree of virtuous company (satsanga) that produces the fresh blossom of discrimination which, being cherished by men with great souls, yields its fruit of  prosperity. The society of the learned makes solitude appear as company, and the evil of death as good as a festivity, and converts a difficulty to ease. Know that the society of the virtuous is the best way to improve understanding, destroy the tree of ignorance, and  remove all our mental diseases. Whoever has bathed in the cold, clear stream of good company does not need the merit derived from acts of charity, pilgrimage, austerity or sacrifice.

Contentment is reckoned to be the best gain, good company the right course, reasoning the true knowledge, and remaining undisturbed the highest bliss. These are the four surest means to break off the shackles of the world, and whoever is practiced in these has surely passed over the false waters of terrestrial sea. Learn, O best of the intelligent, that the practice of any one of these pure virtues leads to a habit of all four. Every one of these separately is a leader to the others. Therefore apply yourself diligently to one of these for your success in getting them all.

As soon as one of these virtues is strengthened and made fruitful in you, it will serve to weaken the force of the faults of your uncontrollable mind.  The cultivation of virtues leads to their full growth and the suppression of vice, but the fostering of vice will lead to the increase of vices and the suppression of good qualities.

Knowledge in Practice – Good Conduct

The mind is a wilderness of errors in which the stream of our desires flows with full force between its two banks of good and evil where we hold our stand. Know, O high-minded Rama, that one’s own disposition is like a rapid current that must not be permitted to bear him away (to the perilous coast).

They are called intelligent who know the cause and effect of things. Men of unfettered minds look upon the appearance and disappearance of every atomic world as the fluctuating wave of the sea. They neither grieve at unwished-for occurrences nor pine for their wished-for chances. Knowing well all accidents are the consequences of their actions, they remain as unconscious as trees.

Having finished its journey through the world and performed its duties here, the soul assumes a calmness like that of the unbreakably hard column of the sky reflecting the images of the tumultuous world (without changing itself). It rejoices exceedingly at being delivered from the innumerable snares of the world, and it becomes as light as air by being freed from its desire of looking after endless objects.  The soul that takes no notice of any cause or effect or doing, or what is to be avoided or accepted, is said to be disembodied though encumbered with a body, and to become unworldly in its worldly state.

We have by our reasoning well weighed the verbosity of our opinionative adversaries and never set aside the holy sayings of the Vedas, even when they are at variance with the opinions of our families. O Rama, we have stored in our minds the truths resulting from the unanimous voice of all the scriptures, whereby it will be evident that we have attained the object of our belief, apart from the fabricated systems of heretical scriptures.
Let the wise continue their inquiries until they obtain their internal peace and until they arrive at the fourth stage (turiya) of joy known by its name of indestructible tranquility. Whoever has attained this fourth state of tranquil joy, whether he is alive or not, or a house-holder or an ascetic, has really passed beyond the limits of the ocean of the world. Such a man remains steady at his place like the calm sea undisturbed by Mandara Mountain, whether he has performed his duties according to the scriptures and codes of ethics or not.

You can derive happiness from your own observations at any place and time, as you can from your association with the good whenever it is available. This is an optional rule.

As learning produces the qualities of quiet and the like, so do these qualities give rise to learning. Thus they serve to grow each other, just as lake and lotuses contribute to their mutual benefit. Learning is produced by right conduct as good conduct results from learning. Thus wisdom (learning, right knowledge) and morality (good conduct & attitudes) are natural helps to one another. Unless one practices wisdom and good conduct in an equal degree, he will never be successful in either of them.

Excerpts from “Yoga Vasishta” by Sage Valmiki, translated by Vihari Lala Mitra