Talks on the Gita -Vinoba 159

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Chapter 14
THE GUNAS: DEVELOPING THEM AND GOING BEYOND THEM
75. Analysis Of Prakriti[1]


1. Brothers, the Fourteenth Chapter, in a way, complements the last Chapter. The Self has really nothing to achieve. It is complete and perfect in itself. The natural movement of the Self is upwards. But just as any object is dragged down by a heavy weight tied to it, the Self is pulled down by the body. We saw in the last Chapter that progress is possible if, by some means, the body and the Self could be separated. This is certainly difficult, but the reward that we shall have will also be great. If we could break the fetters of the body that bind the Self, we shall experience a great joy. Then the suffering of the body would not make us miserable. We would then be free. Who can rule over a man who has conquered his body? One who rules himself is the master of the universe. Therefore, end the domination of the body over the Self. The pleasures and pains of the body are all alien; they have absolutely no connection with the Self.

2. I had given the example of Jesus Christ to give an idea of the extent to which the pleasures and pains of the body should be separated from our Self. Christ shows how peaceful and cheerful one should be even when the body is succumbing to death. But, separating body from the Self needs discernment on one hand and restraint on the other. Tukaram has spoken of ‘विवेकासहित वैराग्याचें बळ’ (Strength of non-attachment in association with discernment). Discernment and non-attachment (vairagya), both are necessary. Non-attachment means, in a sense, self-restraint and endurance. The Fourteenth Chapter shows how we could proceed towards self-restraint. The oars propel the boat, but the rudder sets the direction. The oars and rudder, both are necessary. In the same way discernment and self-restraint, both are needed to separate the Self from the bodily pleasures and pains.


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References and Context

  1. Please see footnote in Chapter 2.13

Related Articles

Talks on the Gita -Vinoba
Chapter Chapter Name Page No.
1. Introduction: Arjun's Despondensy 1
2. Teaching was in Brief: Self-Knowledge and Equanimity 9
3. Karmayoga 20
4. Vikarma:The Key to Karmayoga 26
5. Two-fold state of Akarma: Yoga and Sannyasa 32
6. Control of the Mind 49
7. Praptti or Surrender to God 62
8. Sadhna For a Happy Ending of Life:The Yoga of Constancy 73
9. The Sovereign Science of Service To Humanity:Yoga of Surrender 84
10. Conteplation of God's Manifestations 101
11. Vision of the Cosmic Form of God 117
12. Saguna and Nirguna Bhakti 126
13. Distinction Between The Self And The Not-Self 141
14. The Gunas:Developing Them and Going Beyond Them 159
15. The Integral Yoga:Seeing The Lord Everywhere 176
16. Conflict Between The Divine and The Demoniacal Tendencies 188
17. Programme For The Seeker 201
18. Conclusion-Renunciation of The Fruit of Actions Leads To The Grace of The Lord 216
19. Last Page 230