The Right View
by Sri Goswami Kriyananda from Intermediate Guide to Meditation
In case you don’t know it all civilizations are insane. Anytime you get two or more people together, insanity sprouts up. It is your responsibility to strengthen your family, assisting them to become saner. It’s your responsibility to strengthen your civilization and make it saner. How do you make these saner? There is only one way: by entering into your meditation and becoming saner yourself. How do you become saner? By meditation and meditation alone; because meditation allows you to know your enemy, your destructive desires. They are destructive and dangerous because they keep you limited to your old patterns. Convert these desires into a desire for wisdom, or peace and tranquility.
It is not wise to keep digging into the past. The emphasis should not be on what you were in a past life; nor what your mother and father did or did not do. The yoga tradition, also, says don’t worry about tomorrow. An ancient poem says:
Yesterday is only a memory, and
Tomorrow is only a dream.
Today is the reality.
Take this moment of time, this eternal now, by learning to overcome your emotional imbalances and insanities, by reducing your extreme reactions to events and things. Do this and you will learn the three Secrets of Life.
- What needs to be done.
- How to do it.
- When to do it.
Of these, timing is the key factor. Most people have an idea of what and how but need to master the art of when. Like a successful actor or businessman, it is not just what is known. Most of all, timing has to be mastered. Each person has a given timing pattern, and internal rhythm. The intuitive realization as to when something should be done needs to be developed, and ultimately mastered by everyone.
There is a pervasive misunderstanding that, when corrected, dramatically improves one’s life. Confucius, the Chinese sage, said it best, “Don’t do unto others that which you would not have them to do unto you.” Through some historical distortion we have dropped the “not” saying, “Do unto others ... “ But this mis-application of the primal Golden Rule has created great upheaval. A perfect example comes from my life. As a very young child, it seemed that people disliked me. It was just after their birthday that the dislike was the strongest. One day the realization dawned upon me. They were aggravated with me because on their birthday I followed the Golden Rule and gave them a book (doing unto them what I wanted them to do to me). But, they hated books on philosophy and theology. Have I made my point? Don’t do unto them, as you would have them do unto you. This involves an assumption that they are like you, and that you are like them. In fact, they are unique. Relinquish the self-centered tendency, purify the distortion of the Golden Rule and do unto others as they would like you to do unto them.
Use meditation as a psychotherapy to forgive and forget the person who hurt you, while redoubling your effort not to hurt anyone. At sometime in your life, you will evolve to the realization that the person who hurt you really was in serious trouble (emotionally), and that they did the very best that they could, under the circumstances. Can you do better toward them? When this awareness comes, it carries the realization that you, yourself, have hurt many more people than you intended. With this realization, compassion manifests.
Meditation is a technique for gaining the Right View, the correct attitude toward life and people. All life is meditation. Every child, every animal has the meditation state. However, as we grow up, and become cultured, we oft-times become hard, harsh, and lose that original viewpoint. We replace the expanded meditational viewpoint with a cold, suspicious attitude.
Have you ever watched a woman going into the business world and then see her seven years later? Many become hard as nails, just like most businessmen. It takes a very special soul to go into the business world and not become hard. The same is true as we walk through life. The secret is in keeping the Right View. Life is about being happy. Happiness cannot be obtained without wisdom. Wisdom is not some abstract concept. Wisdom is a lifestyle. This non-dual action is called Kriya.
Either one lives the wisdom lifestyle or one lives to perpetuate ignorance. There is no middle ground. One always has karma from the past. Regardless of this, choose wisdom. Live the meditative life.
Copyright © 2012 Goswami Kriyananda