Goal in Life (Satsang)

The topic for the Satsang on Sunday, 21st October, 2012 was ‘Goal in Life’ (English).

Following is the transcript of the speech made by Dr. Jayadeva Yogendra and Smt. Hansaji Yogendra on the topic.

Smt. Hansaji and Dr. Jayadeva Yogendra

“You see, there is the goal of living the life, making money, being happy; these are the obvious goals and we don’t really search for goals. We are forced into life and we carry it on. Sometimes we see others and feel jealous and start thinking also but we have but done much good work, we just leave it there. So practically the whole life goes in muddling through. Sometime we take up one kind of job, sometime we start with some new business…that always goes on. In the end, we are dissatisfied – our children have not grown up as we want, the family is not that happy, we are not being able to succeed and what not because this kind of thinking does not happen.

See, we are born into this world to fulfill our purpose and the purpose is our duties, and everyone does not understand what our duties are. So we just muddle through and try to feel happy about it. But real understanding does not happen. We see others and sometimes feel jealous but we, on our own, have never done any thinking.

I personally believe in accepting life as it is and not grumbling, not saying I’m rich or I’m poor or this or that. If you are born in a certain family, you can carry out the instructions, study, pass exams and be fit for something, take it up and continue. While doing that, maybe some clarity can happen and you might benefit out of that.

But basically, living our life itself is very important. Spending time in quarreling, complaining, is not right. See, life is there for us to live, so just live it. Be happy in living that life and duties are there before us all the time. When you sit before food, your duty is to eat, when you’re in the office – duty to work. This carries on.
I believe that these very simple things are there – to eat, to drink, to grow, to do our work. Now beyond that, let us not think of the other goals – becoming the President of India, becoming a millionaire and all that. We make mistakes there. In our mind, we dream of things that we are not capable of achieving and we get frustrated and more or less, the life is full of frustrations. Had we taken up the things that have come naturally and done our best, then we would have got our answer. But we don’t get answers because instead of doing the things at hand, we try this and that and are not able to feel satisfaction. So I think we should not spend time trying to dream of what is our goal. The goal is what you are doing. You are here to listen, I am here to talk. Let us carry it out.”

We need to think of our goal in life. There is the story of King Ashoka who fought the war of Kalinga. There was a lot of devastation. Lakhs of people died, it was a painful sight. When he saw this, he was shocked – “What have I done, just to get more property, possession, more states under me! I had to kill so many people, could it be accepted?” He could have been one of the happiest people, he had everything in life, money, respect, etc. So why wasn’t he happy?

Buddha, earlier was known as Siddharth. He was a prince and had all luxuries. Once when he saw old age, sickness, death, he was shocked. He could not take it. “What is this life? I must find something else.”
So what do you exactly want in life? Name? Fame? They had everything and yet were not happy. What do you want in life? Everyone wants happiness, peace. Do you find peace in all these things? No. Then where do you get peace? It was a search that Buddha went around for and he could find out and then he became Buddha. He finally said that the whole cause of problems for all of us is our own desires. They are the culprit. We are born and we should be happily living but why is that not happening?
Sometimes we have likes and dislikes, sometimes our ego comes in the way. We feel we are running the show. Yoga Shastra says that the root cause of all our pain and suffering is our Klesas which we are born with, we create and we have to work hard to remove them. Ignorance, Ego, Attachment, Aversion and our own Selfishness and love of self are the Klesas talked about in the Yoga Sutras. They are the vitiating factors, the cause of all pain and suffering.
So what goal should we keep? Could it be going beyond the material world and trying to understand consciousness? But before this, we need to reach smaller goals. So, as Dr. Jayadeva said, if you want to live your life, do your duty, whatever you can do at various levels, start doing, not just taking benefits from the world, but giving to the world. And once you start giving, you get happiness. When you are at the receiving end, there is no happiness.
Duty concept is something where you are first doing something for yourself, taking care of your health and then you go ahead and do your duty towards your family, work, society, humanity, etc.
So the basic goal we need to keep is this concept of duty – a healthy body and balanced mind. The body should be free from diseases , so work hard to keep them away and the mind should be level headed so that thoughts will give you the right direction. The final goal would be achieved if this goal is achieved.”

Q & A

Q. How do we go towards freedom from pain and suffering?

Dr. Jayadeva: You see, if we understand that we have pain and suffering, then the next move is trying to free ourselves. But as it is, we don’t think we have pain, we feel we are alright. So there’s no way to get out of it.
Smt. Hansaji: We are talking theory when saying ‘How do we free ourselves from pain and suffering.’ Do you really feel you are suffering? First make this clear, then, where am I suffering, what am I doing? If you know that, automatically once you become aware, things will move further. First of all, we don’t understand what pain is, what the Yogisunderstood it as, and so we enjoy everything that is around. We don’t think it is painful. We don’t think it is wrong to get angry or to tell lies. So if this is the case, don’t think about freedom at all.
Q. How does Citta Vritti Nirodha play a role in ‘Goal of life’?

Dr. Jayadeva:Well, this is a very big thing. Once the mind starts working, problems start. Do you understand that? So here yoga says, stop the mind.
Smt. Hansaji: Whatever problems are there are because of the mind. The mind is the culprit. Stop it, then the problems will be stopped. So we have to work at that level.
Q. Can goal of our life change as per the demanding situations?

Dr. Jayadeva: See, it has been changing all the time because we are not stable, we are unable to understand. So we get attracted by all things and all our life we are just like that, running from one to another.
Smt. Hansaji: Demanding situations are going to tell you where the priorities lie – how much time to give to which area. But the goal will remain the same, we have to see that we move towards that.
Q. If someone from family or society keeps telling us about our goal, then what should we do?

Dr. Jayadeva: You are also something are you not? Others keep playing around and you keep running along with them, that is wrong.
Smt. Hansaji: Family and society are obstacles on your path only if you consider them to be. These hurdles are part of life. Where there is life, there is difficulty and problems. It is all about dealing with them and moving on with life.

Q. It is not easy to be happy or peaceful when one is financially unstable. How does one maintain a balanced state of mind in such a situation?

Dr. Jayadeva: If you cheat someone and steal their money, would you remain in a balanced state after that if the police were after you? If the police did not chase you, then hitting someone on the head with a newspaper and earning a little money, won’t that make your mind more peaceful?
Smt. Hansaji: As long as we have materialistic goals, i.e. ‘we will be peaceful only if we have money’, that is where problems arise. I can show you thousands of people who have lots of money but are sick, unhappy, can’t d their duties well in life and are in a bad state. So we will have to change out thinking.

There is a story of a king who wants his treasure chest to be full always. A Yogi tells him, “I know the trick. Give me the shirt of the person who is happy in life and I will do magic with it.” The king searches but everyone says they are unhappy. Finally he finds someone who claims he has no problems. He asks for the man’s shirt but the man says he doesn’t have one! So, there is no connection between money and happiness.
Q. The moment any small difficulty comes, I get into depression. What to do?

Dr. Jayadeva: Go to a good psychiatrist.
Smt. Hansaji: Think that this is not a problem, it is a situation and do your best in the situation. Whether you call it a problem or not, this is life. In fact, you should gear up yourself and become enthusiastic when a problem comes. Move ahead with full energy and zest and if you cannot think like this, then go to a psychiatrist.

Q. How does one cope up with family members who are always dissatisfied and expect more and more inspite of giving them your best service and time?

Dr. Jayadeva: You see, if you consider them as family members, then you have to accept them and you have to carry on what they say.
Smt. Hansaji: But understand one thing, that if your goal is to make everyone in the family happy, then you will fail miserably. You can’t give happiness. You can work hard to satisfy their needs. But happiness is a very different affair. That is something which has to come in the personality. So differentiate – don’t do an act to make somebody happy. That’s not the way to live life. You do it because that is your family, that’s the need and it is your duty. If somebody is happy, thank God. If somebody is unhappy, still thank God.

Q. If my goal is to be a great man, what should be my motive?

Dr. Jayadeva: The goal of being a great man itself will create problems. What is, is. Live like that and there will be no problem.
Smt. Hansaji: Read Philosophy and you will understand, what does a great man mean? Every human is great. Every human is potentially divine. We are already great. So just understand situations and move along.

Satsang is an open meeting held every Sunday from 9:30 to 10:30 am at The Yoga Institute, Santacruz East, Mumbai. It involves an interesting presentation to the public, made by the students of the Teacher Training Course. Each week, a new presentation of a Yogic concept is made in a simple way through skits and decoration for the general public, followed by a short speech from our Gurus, Dr. Jayadeva and Smt. Hansaji Yogendra.
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