28. Listen to Heart – Knowledge is taken and not given ….
To give and take something is a flow in both the direction. For this it has to be mutually agreed. To give something to someone a man needs to be open-hearted. He has to believe that by giving something you are not losing anything. It is simple to say but difficult to practice. It is general belief by people is that if we have given something to someone it means that we have lost it. More than this, in this materialistic world, we are scared of loosing but more than loosing that we become conscious that other person will gain. We are more concern about others gain rather than our loosing. This is human behavior as our heart is impure in this material desirable world.
To take something from someone is not so easy even if the other person is ready to give. Again for this we need to have open heart. We feel that why should I take from someone. It is like alms taking. But alms taking and giving is restricted to material world. We feel inferior in taking from someone. It is all mindset. You need a positive mindset for taking and giving. You need to follow humanity, kill all your desire of material world then exchange takes place in positive atmosphere. No man on this earth is self-dependent. Human beings are social animal so living alone is not possible. It is type of flow of energy. As per science we know that energy is neither created nor destroyed. It is just flow which takes place.
“Freedom is not something that anybody can be given. Freedom is something people take, and people are as free as they want to be” ― James Baldwin
Nothing is free in this world not even freedom is free. Now when nothing is free why should someone give you? But if you want, you need to take but has to pay for it. By saying pay, it does not mean money but by human heart. You have to be soft hearted. You have to be soft spoken. You have to be helpful in nature. One should be hungry to take knowledge. Freedom is required from all desires of materials and ego. Unless the mind, heart and senses are free one cannot move ahead in the journey of humanity and spirituality. When it comes to knowledge it is most easy and the toughest to take. You have to take pain for taking the Knowledge. You have to sacrifice for taking and we have already discussed that ‘Sacrifice is not sacrifice’. You have to believe the master and guide. You have to surrender yourself to him with having faith in him. You have to trust the guru. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction. An intelligent heart acquires knowledge. A wise man is full of strength, and a man of knowledge enhances his might. Wisdom will come into your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul.
If we speak about education and raising children, then a child needs to stay in the family and in a close relation with mother and father till the age of 8. That is a necessary condition, which will prepare the child for studying in a gurukul under the guidance. There he will remain till the age of 17, constantly acquiring knowledge. The environment of a gurukul is very pure and filled with positive samskaras. It was Lord Rama and later Lord Krishna in dwapara yuga, who gave great importance to gurukul education. Although they were the embodiment of God Himself and did not need to learn or study anything, they did so for the sake of humans, they themselves underwent gurukul education. An example set by saints will be followed by ordinary people.
‘Practice before you preach’ is general proverb. For practicing one has to take knowledge. If he has knowledge then he can give to others else half cooked and crooked knowledge would be given. So knowledge is taken with interest and not given. We know that to take knowledge even the Lord has to leave his all pleasures of life and go to gurukul, not that the gurukul was prepared in the kingdom of Dasharatha for Lord Ram, Lakshman, Shatrughan and Bharat.
A lady came with her son to one saint and asked him: “My child eats too much gur–sugar, please forbid him.” The saint was thinking: “But I am also eating gur-sugar, so how can I stop this boy from doing the same?” So he answered: “Bring your son to me after one month, I will instruct him at that time.” The lady was thinking that, perhaps, it would be some complicated procedure, so she decided not to worry and come after one month. In the following month the saint renounced eating gur-sugar because he knew that his words would have effect only if they were based on truth. After one month the lady came and again asked the saint to forbid her son eating sugar and expected a big treatment. When she heard mahatmaji’s simple words: “Boy, don’t eat sugar,” she was disappointed and said: “Oh, Maharaj! Couldn’t you tell us the same already one month ago; we’ve just unnecessarily spent 200 Rupees on transport. “No, I couldn’t, because at that time I was eating gur myself and therefore had no right to prohibit it to anybody else.” And that is the example. How the great souls act in the world so the people do.
In the whole world, Vedic Sanatan Dharma is the oldest culture. And the basic principle of its transmission from one generation to the next is the gurukul education, the parampara (lineage) of Guru – disciple relationship. A student in the gurukul should pay his attention only to studies. If he directs his interest in many other things, his study will not be successful and he will not become learned and wise. And a student should always try to understand what the meaning of the teachings which he or she gets. It is similar in the following story.
A guru instructed his disciple who was a bit dull to guard a pot with yogurt from crows. The disciple took a wooden stick and sat down by the pot. When some crow came near, he would chase it away. But when a cat came, he freely let it eat the entire yogurt from it. After some time Guruji returned and, upon seeing the empty pot, started inquiring about the yogurt. The boy answered that he was protecting it from crows but then a cat came and ate all of it. “And why didn’t you chase it away,” Guruji asked. “Because I was told to guard it only from crows,” was the answer. That is not the way to understand our teaching, it is blind.
To become a good student and a disciple, one should follow the precepts laid down by the Vedas:
Kaka Cheshtha, Bako Dhyanam,
Swana Nindra Tathaiva Cha,
Alpahari, Graha Tyagi,
Vidyarthi Pancha Lakshanam.
Swana Nindra Tathaiva Cha,
Alpahari, Graha Tyagi,
Vidyarthi Pancha Lakshanam.
Have the awareness of a crow (who is always aware of everything around it, where and what appears to eat, to steal etc.), have the concentration like a crane (who stands motionless at the bank of a lake and when a fish is passing by, it quickly catches it), have shallow sleep like a dog (who immediately wakes up if anyone comes close), always eat limited quantities of food (fill half of your stomach with food, a quarter with water and leave one quarter empty) and renounce the attachment to your house and family (do not call home every weekend and narrate long stories of how you are, what you were eating, what your friends do and so on). These are the five signs of a good student. If the student wants to be successful in his study, he should abide to these instructions. And above all this is the devotion, obedience and seva, service to the Gurudev. That brings the highest knowledge through His blessing.
The Word of God is truthfully faithful, reliable and dependable. It is proven true and worthy in times of desperate need and our darkest hours. You can take them to a bank and cash them. But you must believe in – Geraldine Vermaak
Our culture frequently glamorizes this false ego as individualism and independence: “Be your own person; find your own way; don’t depend on anyone else.” Such feelings may seem to give us power, but actually they cut us off from the higher power of Krishna.
But it also takes strength to admit that our strength is not enough to face life’s perplexing, exhausting and unending problems. However, admitting this is abhorrent to our false ego, the illusory conception that keeps us away from spiritual reality. The false ego makes us believe that we can be secure and satisfied without any connection with Krishna.
Who is the man in material perplexities? It is he who does not understand the problems of life. In the Brhad-Aranyaka Upanisad (3.8.10) the perplexed man is described as follows: “He is a miserly man who does not solve the problems of life as a human and who thus quits this world like the cats and dogs, without understanding the science of self-realization.” This human form of life is a most valuable asset for the living entity who can utilize it for solving the problems of life; therefore, one who does not utilize this opportunity properly is a miser. On the other hand, there is the Brahman, or he who is intelligent enough to utilize this body to solve all the problems of life.
The krpanas, or miserly persons, waste their time in being overly affectionate for family, society, country, etc., in the material conception of life. One is often attached to family life, namely to wife, children and other members, on the basis of “skin disease.” The krpana thinks that he is able to protect his family members from death; or the krpana thinks that his family or society can save him from the verge of death. Such family attachment can be found even in the lower animals, which take care of children also. Being intelligent, Arjuna could understand that his affection for family members and his wish to protect them from death were the causes of his perplexities. Although he could understand that his duty to fight was awaiting him, still, on account of miserly weakness, he could not discharge the duties. He is therefore asking Lord Krishna, the supreme spiritual master, to make a definite solution. He offers himself to Krishna as a disciple. He wants to stop friendly talks. Talks between the master and the disciple are serious, and now Arjuna wants to talk very seriously before the recognized spiritual master. Krishna is therefore the original spiritual master of the science of Bhagavad-Gita, and Arjuna is the first disciple for understanding the Gita. How Arjuna understands the Bhagavad- Gita is stated in the Gita itself. And yet foolish mundane scholars explain that one need not submit to Krishna as a person, but to “the unborn within Krishna.” There is no difference between Krishna’s within and without.
Arjuna starts realizing and he surrenders completely to Krishna. Krishna had waited for this moment. A true and a real Guru give advice and teachings only when the disciple is fully prepared to receive it. Knowledge is taken and not given. Having exhausted his emotions, Arjuna with his intellect and his mind started feeling of devotion from and within his heart, tasmat Arjuna qualifies to receive knowledge from the Lord.
All Glories to Lord Krishna & All His Loving Devotees….. Hari Bol……
Courtesy : Bhagavad-Gita As It Is (by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada ) , Ramayana, Srimad Bhagavad-Gita ( by A. Parthasarathy & www.gitadaily.com ) Chapter 2 : Text 7