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Opinion

Work and wisdom



What is that we are so busy seeking in life? Using our faculty of discrimination well, we will realise that we are seekers of anant, limitlessness. Nothing less. The problem lies in how we are seeking it. We have made our desires a vehicle for this goal, with action as its prime mover. And the problem with action is that it is inherently limited, producing limited result. Verily, limited multiplied by limited continues to be limited. This is a perpetual trap unless one discerns and corrects this fundamental error.

The Upanishads reveal that we are limitless, the sought is enshrined in the seeker, Tat tvam asi. We only become a victim of our notion of being limited because we erroneously superimpose limitations of our body-mind-sense on the limitless Consciousness that enlivens it. Consciousness is all there is; and one is that non-dual Consciousness.

If one is already limitless, it can only be gained by knowledge and not by any action; ‘naasti akritah kriten’, warn the Vedas. Then what is the utility of work? Carried out with an attitude of dedication to the Divine with no attachments to the result, the work purifies one’s inner instrument, the mind.

A pure mind realises the reality in no time. In the Bhagwad Gita too, Krishn exhorts Arjun to be a karma yogi, elucidating the merits of action done with the spirit of renunciation and duty. Such an action paves the way to the wellspring of wisdom and well-being within.



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