Author Topic: Fundamental Human Problem Part 1  (Read 1302 times)

Dr. Sadananda

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Fundamental Human Problem Part 1
« on: February 17, 2010, 11:28:58 PM »
Fundamental Human Problem Part 1

We have discussed two aspects, the mind and the subtle body. Of the mind, the important component is the Ego, involving 'I am this', which is the essence of the individual 'I' which ‘does’ all the transactions. It involves the conscious-existent entity, 'I am' identifying with inert entities such as body, mind and intellect to facilitate all transactions in the world. The ego, although a necessary vehicle without which I cannot transact in the world, has become as if the essence of myself, since I do not know what my true nature is. Thus a false guy, ego, has become a real guy, since the real guy is not known.

When I take myself as 'this', the limitations of 'this' becomes my limitations. 'This' is always limited by 'that', while freedom is to BE beyond all limitations, absolute infiniteness, Brahman (the word Brahman itself means infiniteness). Any limitation causes unhappiness, and no one wants to be unhappy. Unlike other infinities with which we are familiar in mathematics, such as pi or e or parallel lines meeting at infinity, etc., which are all conditionally infinite or qualified infinite (for example pi cannot be more than and less than some numbers or parallel lines are separated by some finite distance, etc), Brahman is absolutely infinite or unconditionally infinite or unqualifiedly infinite and therefore unconditionally limitless which is the same as absolute happiness.

Limitless though I am, I take myself to be limited; notionally, 'I am = this'. This leaves me with three fundamental limitations which can be expressed as a) I am a mortal b) I am unhappy and c) I am ignorant. I do not like these presumed limitations that I have. Hence, I struggle hard to gain my true nature. If we examine our lives we find that all our struggles in life can be reduced to two broad categories, a) trying to gain something (pravRRitti) and b) trying to get rid of something (nivRRitti). All these struggles are to overcome the three fundamental limitations stated above. Thus from birth to death or from womb to the tomb, every living being is trying to solve these three fundamental limitations by way of trying to gain something or trying to get rid of something, pravRRitti and/or nivRRitti. This is true across the board and from time immemorial. The tragedy of life is that no one can solve these problems of limitations, now or ever. Let us look at each one carefully and see where the problem lies.

When I take myself to be the body, then body problems become my problems. The body, by its nature, undergoes six modifications: existence in the womb (asti) for seven to nine months; birth as a baby (jAyate); growing pains as a child to an adulthood (vardhate); modifications of the body (vipariNamati, i.e. problems of the grownups); slow disintegration with all the health problems in the world (apakshIyate) and ultimately kicking the bucket (vinasyati). That which is born has to die or that which has a beginning has to have an end, (jaatasya hi dhruvo mRituH), says Krishna. That is the Law of Nature. No body or nobody is permanent here. Civilizations have come and civilizations have gone. The world is always in a continuous flux, never in a static condition. Hence the Sanskrit word for the world is 'jagat' and etymologically it means 'jAyante gacchate iti jagat' that which is continuously coming and going; that is the nature of the world. What comes must go, like the slogan, what goes up must come down.

In a dialogue between a celestial being (yaksha) and King YudhiShTara in the MahAbhArata, yaksha asked the king, 'What is the greatest wonder in the world?'. Obviously, the King had no idea of our seven wonders of the world. He responded, "We see people being born and people dying every day, yet everyone acts as though he is going to be permanent in this world; and that is the greatest wonder of the world". Incidentally, related to the mind there was a question too. Yaksha asked the king, "What moves the fastest in the world?". The king replied without knowing that the velocity of the light is the fastest we can reach, "mind moves the fastest in the world".

The body cannot but be mortal. When I identify with the body, I feel that I am going to die one day. The fear of death is the greatest fear that a human being faces. No one wants to die. Even those who want to commit suicide do not want to die, but they think that by ending their life they will solve their problems. They do not want to die if the problems of their mind can be solved without dying.

Those problems arise because of the ego or identification with the body, mind and intellect. Therefore we can never solve the problem of mortality, whatever pills or medication we take or however much we try to hide our age by coloring or making up the deficiencies, etc. Man's longing to live eternally is inherent, where as finite life seems to be the fact of life. To solve this problem some turn to religion. Some religions promise eternal life, not now, but after death; of course only if you believe in them. After your death, no one would know if you lived happily ever after. There is a day of judgment when you will be taken to eternal heaven or pushed to eternal hell - either way eternity is guaranteed. All these beliefs sprang up since there is an inherent desire to live eternally. No animal wants to die. Preservation of one's life at any cost is instinctive. Hence mortality is a problem, since I identify myself with the body. It has become not merely the body's mortality but my mortality. But whatever we do, we can never solve or escape the jaws of the death. I want to be eternal, but with the body I can never be. Hence all attempts to live happily ever after with the body will be futile.
« Last Edit: April 18, 2014, 09:00:21 PM by Sunil »