Anuvibha Reporter
 

ANUVIBHA REPORTER - A Journal of Anuvibha Global Organization
(Vol. 3 No. 1 & 2 Jan-June, 2007)

   HH ACHARYA MAHAPRAGYA
Spiritual Development Alone will Lead to Universal Peace

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There ought to be a practical aspect of freedom, i.e. freedom from the narrow outlook rooted in casteism and sectarianism. One sect should respect the beliefs of another sect. We may think differently and may follow different practices of worship and our ways of paying obeisance to gods and goddesses or to God might also be different, but that diversity should not be interpreted as a synonym of antipathy or antagonism. Diversity doesn’t mean antagonism. It is the beauty of our way of thinking, our vision. We like a garden where different types of flowers bloom and which has many varieties of plants and trees. If all the flowers and trees are of the same type, the beauty of the garden will also diminish. What pains me most is that we change what is beautiful into violence and antipathy. Is it not the incomplete mentality of our thinking? Let us also ponder over this question.
Let us have self-introspection, self-criticism. We must not only think about others. On this occasion, let us review the past and look back to examine how our past year was. Let us not only look back on the year that has gone by, but also look forward to the coming year with auspicious thoughts, and pray for an auspicious future. Let us introspect and examine what  we did in the past and what we are going to do in the future. The talk of peace will remain incomplete till the review of the past, the thought of the present and the vision of the future are in harmony with one another. I wish that we abandon all epithets and think of an existence devoid of epithets. Our consciousness is not free from any label: it is influenced by our sect, our caste and our colour. Let us put religion into practice. Let us not regard religion as a mere testimony or symbol.
Acharya Tulsi said, “Man should set an example of morality, truth and integrity in his life.” Religion should not only be confined to places of worship, it should manifest itself in markets and offices as well. The religion enshrined in scriptures and sects should make its way into the places of work. If religion doesn’t integrate into business and offices, and we only over-emphasize its principles, I can not say to what extent it would really mean religion. We have to think of the changes that are necessary in the form of the religion that is in vogue today. If we do not think of changing the outmoded customary practices and insist on following dogmas, it doesn’t bode well for humanity.
Let us always think of something new. We must not merely carry the burden of old beliefs, but we should also learn to unburden our mind. The present age lacks an environment of openness. The tension that we see today might not have existed to this extent in the past. The main cause of the tension that we see today lies in man’s infatuation with wealth. Man is seized by his lust for wealth, which degenerates into deep infatuation. As a result, he is ignoring morality. This economic infatuation gives rise to crimes and unethical behaviour. All these problems emanate from man’s greed for wealth and from his straying away from the world of higher consciousness.
We are all sentient beings. Every human is a sentient being. He has knowledge, but the difficulty is that he doesn’t associate as much with those who have a state of higher consciousness as he does with the material objects. Therefore, it is imperative that we talk of ahimsa for the sake of peace, and think of limiting our consumption and accumulation of material objects for the sake of ahimsa. If these ethical norms become a part of our life’s daily routine, the dream of peace may come true. What are the causes of tension, diseases and depression? The answer to this question lies in the fact that man is drifting away from his own existence and is getting associated with material objects. Without finding out a solution for this problem the problem of stress and depression can not be solved. Mere medicines and hospitals can not help us to get rid of diseases unless we think over the causes that give rise to them.
I plead for peace and nonviolence. I myself know very well that this can not be accomplished merely through sermons, discourses and messages. A change may occur in our thoughts and beliefs, but it may turn out to be a short-lived impact. A thought that reaches the domain of our conscious mind only may not last long. Its impact on our mental attitude will be transitory until it is able to make its way into the unconscious mind. In order to transmit thoughts into the unconscious mind, we have to undergo rigorous practice. Without that it is not possible. Let us therefore think of practice and training. In the present system of education, great emphasis is placed on students’ intellectual development. They are also learning strategies for technological development, but are not taught how to develop their emotional competence. Today training in ahimsa is not imparted to students. I believe that without training and practice mere discourses in ahimsa will degenerate into the futility of verbal exercise. It will fail to bring about any change in society. If we want to transform society, we will have to change our lifestyle and our way of working. The greatest solution lies in a self-restrained lifestyle. There is one main slogan of the Anuvrat Movement i.e. “self-restraint is life.”
In my opinion, the highest precept for solving the problem of the present is self-restraint. Today innumerable people are suffering on account of the unrestrained behaviour of some individuals. The lack of self-restraint on the part of one individual can make the lives of several individuals miserable. We should ponder over the question of self-restraint and self-control. We should not think of controlling others, but should think of controlling our emotions and awakening our inner consciousness. The more a person’s inner consciousness is awakened, the more perfect will be the solution of the problem. We will not succeed if we try to find a solution on the external level only.
A boy came and lit the lamp. The saint asked “Where has the light come from?” The boy blew the lamp out and put a counter question “Where has the light gone?” No one knows from where the light comes and where it goes. It is a problem, and it is we who have to find a solution. We will also have to find a solution of the problem as to where unrest is coming from and where peace is going. Let us not continue to grapple with the problem and throw pebbles in the darkness, but we should move with the light and find out a solution. The way to the solution of the problem lies in a state of consciousness, that is free from tension, fear and dogmatic insistence.
Let us practise pious thought and celebrate it with great joy. May this joy become our permanent attribute and may we succeed in collecting such resources as may make the future auspicious and prosperous.

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