In the previous episode we had continued the discussion on Vidura’s important advice on controlling of our five senses effectively. We discussed a significant clarification on the above point wherein we mentioned that when Vidura explains that we’ve to keep our senses under control, he doesn’t mean that we should completely shut them down by not doing anything. Rather, we need to channelize the activities of our five senses in the right direction so that we pave our way for success, both personally and professionally. In fact, these five senses given by Bhagawan are five big gifts, but they are like double-edged swords – If we use them in a constructive purpose, Bhagawan is going to lift us up to Vaikunta straightaway! Whereas if we use them for a destructive purpose, the same Bhagawan is going to let us down by making us falling into his trap! Hence we need to be extremely careful and choosy with our actions that we perform by using these five senses.
Moreover, we concluded yesterday’s discussion by emphasizing that the best channel through which our senses can be directed towards Bhagawan, rather than all the other worldly activities is nothing but the channel called “Bhakti-Maarga” or “Devotion” towards Bhagawan. Our eyes should look at Bhagwan and enjoy His beauty. Our ears should listen to the various stories (“Charithra”) of Bhagawan and melt in His glory! Our nose should smell the sweet-smelling “Tulasi” and the other flowers that we offer to Bhagawan. Our tongue should be made to chant the “Manthra” of Bhagawan and at the most, to talk about His significance. Hence, the best channel that all our five senses can be integrated into is “Bhakti” and nothing else! By doing this, all our dirt that is sticking on us for the past so many births (“Praarabdha” and “Sanchita” Karma) start getting washed away slowly.
Thus marks the detailed explanation from Vidura on the subject of controlling the five senses, with the following sloka:
“Vashyendriyam jithaathmaanam druthadhandam vikaarishu!
Pareeksha kaarinam dheeram athyantham shireer nishevate!!”
Thus through the above sloka, Vidura consolidates all the explanations on the controlling of five senses and advises King Dhirdiraashtra to do the needful immediately without any further delay.
Next, Vidura links the controlling of senses to two important factors that we come across every minute of our life – “Kaama” and “Krodha”. “Kaama” means “desires” and “Krodha” means “Anger”. We’ve already discussed in your earlier episodes about these two challenges, however, given the significance of this particular context, it is worth mentioning again.
“Kaama yeshaha krodha yeshaha rajo guna samudhbhavaha!
Mahaashanah mahaapaapaathmaa vidhhi yenamiha vairinam!!”
Through the above sloka from the Bhagawad Gita, Bhagawan Krishna clearly explains that both “Kaama” and “Krodha” are the two biggest enemies of mankind.
“Kshudhra aksheneva jaalena jashaava pihitaa vuru!
Kaamascha raajan krodhascha tau pragnyaanam vilumpataha!!”
Through the above sloka, Vidura drives home precisely the same point as Bhagawan Krishna later did in the Bhagawad Gita, about “Kaama” and “Krodha”. He takes up an analogy to explain the context better – Vidura explains thus: “Oh King Dhirdiraashtra! For instance, if two fishes get stuck up together in a fishing net that has a small outlet in it, both these fishes would see this as an opportunity to bite the remaining portions of the net and break it open to escape out! Similarly, oh King! If you have two fishes called “Kaama” and “Krodha” in yourself with a small loophole called “unrighteousness” in you, these two “fishes” would bite you like anything and make the unrighteous character in you bigger and bigger and finally lead you to your own downfall!”
How relevant is this advice of Vidura in today’s world? We should analyze these two factors in a sequential manner. Firstly as mentioned above, “Kaama” is nothing but desire and this is the first step. As this first step grows in enormous size gradually every passing day, this manifests into the intermediate step of “greed”. This step of “greed” would lead us to the next intermediate step of searching for ways to satisfy that greed. If we’re able to satisfy the greed, fair enough! However if we’re not able to satisfy this greed because of whatsoever reasons, we try different methodologies in order to satisfy that greed somehow! If none of the methodologies work out, we tend to lose our balance and try to vent out our inability! Here is where we move on to the next step called “Anger”. Thus we can see here that “Kaama” (Desire) is the first step of destruction and “Krodha” (Anger) follows the first step in destroying us completely!
For instance, if we look at an object and if we like that object very much, we develop a “Kaama” for it. Once the desire is developed, we would look out for different ways to attain that object. If we’re able to do so successfully, we’re safe! If on the contrary, the inability of possessing that particular object transforms itself to anger and frustration! This is where we would start venting out and yelling at those people/circumstances that deny us from attaining that object. This is where the problem lies – If we get angry, we would go to any extent to insult, abuse and even kill others, so as to satisfy the desire that we have. Thus we can see that “Krodha” is an extremely dangerous factor that might pull us down instantly from our spiritual progress.
This is why Vidura and even Bhagawan Krishna himself are constantly reminding us that we should treat “Kaama” and “Krodha” as our worst enemies! So for today, let us focus on this important lesson of Vidura Neeti and Bhagawad Gita and introspect into ourself. Let us try to address those areas and situations in our daily lives wherein we give room for “Kaama” and “Krodha” to take over! Let us consciously take a step forward to cut down on both these detrimental factors! We shall wait till the next episode to explore more of Vidura’s advice to King Dhirdiraashtra, and in turn for all of us! Stay tuned! 🙂