This is the second part of the series after Happiness : a trip to the soul – Gaurav S Kaintura.
“Why are you here?
Why have you left all your work and now listening to me with rapt attention?
What’s in your heart?
Its desires. Its desires of your mind that manipulate you to do all sort of things. There are different people, different minds, so different desires.
Somebody wants money, some fame, some pray for child, some crave for the love; but all have desires.
Man is bounded by desires. Desire is the cause of creation and it is the way for destruction. When you have desire for money so you work hard for it; some wants to serve their nation so they work on it. World is full of desires. Whole life we try to fulfill our desires and end up with it but still at deathbed we’re full of desires. At the time of execution, the devil also asks, ‘What is your last desire?’
We say, if had a chance, ‘bla..bla..’ But we also know that, it was not my last desire, I wanted this also, that too and a lot more.
Once king of Chedi had clash of ego with sage Vashistha. He wanted the revenge for his insult, so he renounced all his kingdom and kin and moved towards northern Himalayas. He performed hard austerities for years to please the Supreme God. When God appeared before him, God asked him the reason of his hard penance and said, ‘What’s your desire?’
To which Chedi king replied, ‘I want to match my strength with Vashistha in every respect. I must possess the subtlest knowledge of archery. I must have an inexhaustible army enough to vanquish Vashistha’s army.’
He also demanded the ultimate weapon – Brahmastra. God fulfilled all his desires and disappeared.
The king then mustered a fresh army, trained it, equipped it with latest weapons and missiles and attacked Vashistha’s hermitage. The inmates of hermitage got panic and told Guru Vashistha about the latest attack. Vashistha then proclaimed them to keep quiet and continue their work as usual. He relaxed them and said, ‘No harm can befall us.’
Guru Vashistha then picked up his staff and placed it in the middle of the gate & went back normally.
The staff resisted all kinds of attack. Even when the king employed Brahmastra (the ultimate weapon) to destroy his enemy; all the demigods assembled to watch the scene with a concern for Vashistha. But the staff repelled it too. Lastly, the king gets defeated but he asked Vashistha about the power of staff.
‘This staff which repelled all your power and attacks is called Brahma Dand and it was implanted by knowledge, so it resisted your whole army.’
The king again baffled at his loss and went again in the Himalayas for hard rigours and austerities. This time Brahma Ji appeared and told him, ‘I am pleased with your tapas and henceforth you shall be known as Vishwamitra Rishi.’ But King (Vishwamitra) was not satisfied with it, he asked,
‘Am I not qualified to be called a Brahma-Rishi?’
Brahma Ji said that, ‘You are a Rajrishi and I will not hesitate to call you that for what you are.’
Vishwamitra remained brooding. It was his desires that brought him so long from a king to a renouncer, then a Rajrishi and lastly after many years a Brahmrishi.
He went in seclusion, away from the materialistic world and went through hard rigours. He stopped taking food, water, everything for uncertain period of time and one day when he decided to break his long fast; a poor man came to him and said, ‘I am famished from tomorrow, please provide me food stuff which you have.’
And Vishwamitra without thinking once gave his piece of food to the hungry man. Then Brahma Ji appeared and told him, ‘You have completely controlled your ego and desires and now you are worthy to be called a Brahma Rishi.’
So after a long race Vishwamitra understood the essence truth and controlled his desires.
The common trait in our genes is that we crave for results more than the Karma and it is due to our desires. A good and selfless desire with a vision may be helpful for all however a single wrong desire could be responsible for the destruction of all.
So it is very necessary to have control over our desires. Be sure of yourself, your actions and their results. Drive your desires to create something big and helpful to all instead of being governed by them. Happiness and Peace are two different things but both can be perceived if we understand them.
‘Contentment is happiness,’ it is the golden truth taught to us by Upanishads. And satisfaction is possible only when you control your desires.
Accept everything as a gift from God and don’t desire for, which is against the wish of Lord.”
Note: Story of Vishwamitra is taken from Gods, Demons, and Others by R K Narayan
Thanks For Reading
Gaurav S Kaintura
24 Aug 2017