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When that happens, the disease particles may not find energy to replicate or strengthen due to which, the immune system may find it easier to kill them. As this stage may be difficult to reach in case of a physically inactive person, he may not benefit the same, though he may still benefit to some extent. Have you noticed that in case of certain types of fevers or some other health issues, your doctor may advise you to eat less, in order to recover faster. Well, you know the reason now. The medicine as well as your immune system may find it easier to kill those disease causing particles within your body, as the supply of energy reduces.
Have you noticed that the medicines for a number of diseases are advised to be taken with meals? An interesting thing is that even the disease fighting particles contained by such medicines need energy to work, according to the same principal. The entire universe is the interplay of energy; where each and every type of action or reaction needs energy. Hence even the disease causing particles need it and so do the disease fighting particles.
Another interesting fact worthy of being mentioned here is that a number of animals start eating less or they may even stop eating at all, as and when they feel they’re suffering from some specific types of health issues. It may look strange as to why an animal may do that and even the animal may not know it, but you know the reason now. As the supply of energy is reduced to the bare minimum; these particles may fall short of energy and the immune system of one such animal may find it easier to kill these particles.
Coming back to the example where you’re suffering from a specific type of skin allergy which causes rashes or pimples to appear on different parts of your body, this is what may happen. If you try to treat one of these pimples with the help of an external medicine like an ointment; as you may find this pimple the most troublesome one, you may succeed in this effort in a day or two. However, as this problem has not been caused due to external factors and the root cause of this pimple as well as all other pimples on your body lies in the allergy living inside you; external remedy may provide temporary relief only.
This is because if this allergy is strong enough to cause ten pimples on your skin at this time and you kill one of them through external methods, another pimple may appear somewhere else on your body; so that the number is ten again. Technically speaking, this allergy is drawing certain amount of energy from your body and considering the amount of energy needed by one pimple to express itself on your skin; the energy being used by this allergy is sufficient to make ten such pimples appear on your body at a time.
When it comes to the spots on your body where such pimples may appear, the ten most vulnerable spots are selected automatically by this allergy, at any point in time. Suppose you are confined within an enclosure covered with walls all around, it is spread in hundreds of acres and along the walls, there are thousands of doors placed at certain distances. As you feel the urge to get out of this enclosure, the most logical way out is to break one of these doors and get out. Suppose most of these doors offer the amount of resistance which is greater than your strength. Hence you may not be able to break these doors and suppose this fact is known to you.
However, there are some doors randomly placed; which are weaker and you may be able to break them, if you try. This fact is also known to you and the only fact which is not known to you is which ones among these thousands of doors are the ones which are weaker. As the urge to break free reaches its peak, there may be only one logical way out. You may start hitting all the doors one by one with strength; so that you may randomly come across one such door which is weak and you may break it.
This is what happens within your body when the particles of a disease carry energy and they want to break out of your skin. They keep trying for such openings which may offer resistance which is weaker in comparison to the energy carried by these particles. As they find such doors; they get out and pimples appear on your skin.
Moving ahead, when you kill one such particle or a group of such particles by applying external medicine on the skin, but you don’t do anything to treat the source of this energy which is the allergy in this case, this is what may happen. As this particle is killed, it stops asking for energy and as a result, the source of allergy has extra energy available with it. This extra energy is given to another particle which is not doing anything due to lack of energy, that particle starts finding a weak door in your skin and the moment it finds one; another pimple appears somewhere else on your skin.
It is like when you break a door and try to get out of the enclosure, an armed man pushes you inside and warns you that he’ll shoot you if you try this door again. When you go inside, you’re once again left with the same choice which is to try and break another weak door and hope there’s no armed man on the other side of that door. If there is an armed man behind the next door also and he does the same thing, you may once again start finding another weak door with no armed man behind it. This process may go on until you find one such door and you get out; or you get unconscious or you die because of lack of energy as you don’t have anything to eat or drink; assuming that quitting is not an option.
The same thing is happening in case of this allergy. Hence the correct approach is not to kill a pimple in question from outside, the correct approach is to kill the source of energy that feeds this pimple from within you. As this source disappears; the energy being supplied by it to the particles vanishes and as this energy goes away; the pimple in question and all other pimples caused due to this energy have to go away.
Therefore, the destruction or misfortunes of your neighbor are not the correct solutions to this problem of jealousy because these things will try to treat this problem from outside only; instead of treating it from inside where the root lies. Hence even if your neighbor is completely destroyed; only a pimple has been killed from outside and the allergy is still the same strong within you.
The name of this allergy is jealousy and the root cause of this allergy is your ego. Therefore, the problem of jealousy is not going to go anywhere until you learn to kill the root cause of this problem; which is your ego. This is because the moment you turn your focus away from this neighbor who may have lost his car and house through misfortunes; a part of the energy allotted to jealousy by your ego becomes free. As you can understand now; this energy starts finding another outlet and sooner than you know, you may develop the same feelings of jealousy for another neighbor, friend or a relative.
This process may go on and on; the objects of your jealousy may keep changing but the problem of jealousy may not go away or even reduce. This is because this problem lies inside you and accordingly; it needs to be treated from inside. Suppose you start working on this problem; you try as hard as it takes and after a number of years of dedicated effort; you’re able to reduce your ego to the extent where it may not allot much energy to jealousy; your problem goes away. Now the same neighbor may live happily with his house and car or he may even buy many of them; but you won’t care. The root cause of this problem has been killed and hence this problem can’t trouble you now.
However, when it comes to kill ego or even when it comes to reduce it significantly; it’s a lot easier saying it than doing it in reality. I’m not trying to discourage anyone but this is how it is. To kill your ego completely; is undoubtedly the most difficult job you may ever try to accomplish and this is why it is the last job which needs to be accomplished; on your mission to liberation. As soon as you’re able to kill your ego or in simple words; as soon as your ego is completely replaced by conscience; liberation happens at that exact moment and not even a moment after that.
This is due to the reason that liberation means complete freedom and in the deepest sense; each and every type of restriction or condition is imposed by your ego. Accordingly; as your ego leaves you; all the restrictions which come with it; go with it too; leaving you liberated. You can’t imagine even a single condition which is not imposed by your ego, in the deepest sense; provided that condition should bring you some type of benefit; whether you know about it or not. We’ll discuss this topic in details, later on. However, let me still mention an example here.
One of the noblest conditions that you may apply to you is that you should die for your country when it is in need. This may be among the noblest types of conditions but it may still be generated by your ego instead of being generated by your conscience; and here is how you can check it. If the feeling to sacrifice yourself in times of need comes in case of your country only; it is generated by ego. On the other hand, if this feeling comes even when another country needs people to fight for it for valid reasons; and you go to that country in order to fight from its side with no personal benefits attached; this feeling is coming from conscience and not from ego.
Have you ever wondered why do a number of people feel proud when it comes to die for their countries whereas they may find even the idea of dying for another country as a strange idea? The answer is not pleasing but this is always the case with truth. If you can gladly die for your country but you can’t even think of doing the same for another country even if their need for you is the most genuine one; this noble act of yours is inspired by your ego and not by your conscience.
This is because you’ve defined conditions that you’ll die for one country and you won’t die for another country even when they may need you the same. When you go to the bottom of it; you may find that you’re doing so in case of your country because it is your country; which means you’re attached to it. As you can remember; I mentioned in an earlier part of this book that attachment is the ornament of ego and not that of conscience. As you’re attached to your country; it is an act of ego if that attachment is inspiring you to die for it.
Looking at the subconscious reasons behind this attachment or behind the wish to die for your country; your forefathers have invested a lot in this country and you may also have made some investments in this country. The future generations of your family are supposed to benefit through these investments, just like you’re benefitting from the investments made by your ancestors; and this is why you feel like dying for your country if needed; if you’re an ego type. However, all of it may happen at the level of your subconscious mind and hence you may not be able to become consciously aware of these reasons; and all you may think is that you love your country and that is why you feel like dying for it.
For instance, you may have a house, a bank balance, a circle of friends, a society and a number of other things which depend on the well being of your country in the deepest sense. It means if the enemy succeeds in capturing the area of your country where you live; you may have to move to another city, state or even to another country according to the intensity of the situation. When you do that, all of the things mentioned here may go away completely or partly. For instance, your house may go away completely, your circle of friends or even your community may get dispersed and you may have to do all or most of these things from the beginning.
These fears as well as many other such fears related to your survival and well being; as well as those related to the survival or well being of your loved ones; are the root cause of your desire to die for your country, if you’re ruled by ego. Hence in the deepest sense; you’re not willing to die for your country but you’re willing to die for your family, house and other such things or people you care for. However when it comes to die for another country; none of these things is in question; which means you don’t suffer any loss at all; whatever may happen to this country or to the people living in it. This means that deep down, it’s all about your profit or loss and hence it’s all about ego since doing things for your profit or loss is the domain of your ego.
Then there may be a second type of people who may not have such fears or greed inside them and all they may feel on subconscious level is that they’re indebted to their country for what it has given them so far and hence they’ll happily choose to die whenever their country needs them. It means the desire of these people to die for their country is not because of what they may lose in future if their country loses one such war; it is because of what they’ve already been blessed with by their countries so far. Hence it is all about paying the debt of their country and it’s not about future benefits which may stop coming to them; if they choose not to engage in war.
The first act is that of greed based in future whereas the second act is that of paying the debt based in the past. Accordingly; both of them are the acts of ego and none of them is a pure act of conscience since none of them is happening due to the need of the present, which is what happens in cases when acts are conducted through pure conscience. However, it should be noted that the percentage ego in the personality of the first type of person is higher in comparison to that in case of the second type of person. This is because the first type of person is willing to engage in war, primarily because of benefits or losses based in the future; which means due to greed.
On the other hand, the second type of person is willing to engage in war; primarily because he wants to pay the debt of his motherland and not due to any type of greed based in future. Hence the second type of person has a much better personality type which means he has much less ego and much more conscience; compared to the first type of person. It is easy to understand that an act of gratitude is always better than an act of greed. However, what may be difficult to understand is that even an act of gratitude has some percentage of ego in it, though such percentage may not be high. Let’s now look at the third type of person in the same situation, so that this equation may become easy to understand.
This is the person who’s willing to die for his country; neither because of greed and nor because of gratitude. He is willing to do so because he feels that fighting for his country is the right thing to do at this time and there’s nothing more to it. Kindly note that the sense of duty in case of the first type of person is coming from greed based in future; the sense of duty in case of the second type person is coming from gratitude based in the past and the sense of duty in case of the third type of person is coming from the need to do the right thing; and this need is based in the present.
Kindly understand that if you’re willing to die for your country because you may lose a number of things otherwise, it’s an act of trade where you’re trying to cut your losses. It means if you don’t lose anything at all, in case the result of this war is not positive for your country; this feeling of dying for your country may not rise from within you. This is because this feeling is being controlled by future circumstances which may change anytime. Since this feeling is not based on inner feelings of the purest type; it is corrupted and it is coming from your ego, as corruption is the other name for your ego.
Coming to the case of the second person; the feeling is being controlled by circumstances of the past; since he has this feeling because of events based in the past; where these events helped him gain advantages through his country. Hence this feeling is an act of payback, which means it is trade; because an act of payback means trade and nothing else. In the deepest sense; if these favors were not there to start with; this sense of duty wouldn’t have been there.
This is why this person can die for his country but not for any other country; because the other country in question has not done him any favors in the past. Therefore, this act is also controlled by ego though this person has a much better personality than the person of the first type, since gratitude is inspiring him and not greed.
The third person however feels the need to die for his country because this is the right thing to do at this moment. It means injustice is being done to his country as an enemy may be invading it without a valid reason; and hence he considers it to be his duty to fight from the side of justice; so that justice may prevail in the long run. This is the person who can die for his country any time when the situation so demands in a fair way; even if he’s has no gains or losses in the future and he doesn’t have any gratitude to return.
This is why this person may be willing to die for another country also; if the need of such country is genuine. Kindly understand that the wish to fight is rising out of the need to do the right thing at any moment; and this need is not inspired by anything else. It means such decisions are based in the present only; and they’re not based in the past or future. As soon as any decision of yours gets related to past or future; corruption may be added to it; since past and future are illusions and only the present is reality. It may be difficult to understand for some people but this is how it is.
This is why when lord Krishna is reminded in the battle of Mahabharata that he promised not to use any weapon during this war whereas he’s trying to use a weapon at the moment in question as he’s about to use his best weapon Sudarshna; his answer is beautiful. He says making such promise was the right thing to do at that moment and breaking this promise is the right thing to do at this moment. Hence when he made that promise; it was based on that moment since that moment was the present moment then. Similarly, when he’s trying to do something which breaks this promise; such thing is also based on the present moment.
It means he doesn’t relate his decisions to the events in the past and he keeps them unaffected from the past as well as from the future; so that such decisions may remain uncorrupted. The moment a decision of yours is attached to something that happened in the past or it is attached to something that may happen in the future, this decision gets corrupted in the deepest sense. This is because the present moment alone is real and the past as well as future at any time is illusion. We’ll discuss this topic in details, later on. However, let me mention an example to help you out a little.
Suppose you see two people fighting on the street and this fight is more like one person beating the other one. Suppose there is no ego on your part and you feel the purest need to help the suffering person. Hence you go to the scene, you try to understand the situation and you find out that the weaker person is representing the truth whereas the stronger person is wrong. You promise the weaker person that you’ll help him and you even start doing so. With your help; this fight changes in a way that in a matter of minutes; the weaker person is not only saved from further beating; he may even start beating the stronger person; since the collective strength represented by you two is higher than that of the other person in this equation.
It may happen for a few minutes or so and you may even let him beat the stronger person as you may feel that he’s been treated unfairly by the stronger person and hence he has the right to payback. However, if it keeps happening; you may soon start feeling restless and you may ask the weaker person to stop beating the stronger person. If he doesn’t stop, you may even warn him that you’ll stop helping him and this is when he may stop. Suppose this whole act took 10 minutes from the moment you promised; to the moment you warned the weaker person to stop beating the stronger person.
It means that if we consider this equation at the moment you warned him; this is what is happening. Just 10 minutes earlier, you promised to help him and you’re backing out from this promise now. Does it mean you’re guilty of breaking your promise and does that make you a bad person? No, you’re neither guilty of breaking a promise nor you’re a bad person. You made this promise 10 minutes ago because doing so was the right thing to do according to the demand of the situation at that time. You’re breaking this promise at this moment because doing so is the right thing to do according to the demand of the situation at this moment.
In the deepest sense; your only intention at both these moments is for justice to prevail in sense. Since the weaker person needed help in order for justice to prevail 10 minutes ago; you helped him. Similarly, the weaker person needed to be stopped in order for justice to prevail at this moment; you warn him that you’ll stop helping him. Though in literal sense; you’re indeed breaking your promise of helping him; you’re not doing so in the real sense or so to say, in spiritual sense; which is the deepest sense among all the senses.
When you said you’d help him; it meant in reality that you’ll help justice to prevail. When you said you’d stop helping him; it once again meant you’ll help justice to prevail. Hence your promise was not broken in the deepest sense and you kept it very well. The reason you were able to do so effectively because your conscience helped you make these decisions by looking at the things happening at the moment, in both the cases. It means when you warned him to stop offering help; you didn’t get attached to the promise of help made by you 10 minutes ago. Since attachment based on past or future is the act of ego; you were able to stay away from it; as there was no ego involved in this act.
You may think after reading the example of wish to die for your country; that this way; even the best of the things done by us are inspired by ego in part, in most cases. Though it may hurt; it is the ultimate truth and there is nothing wrong with it. As soon as a person get rids of his ego completely; he’s liberated which means he’s never born again under compulsion. It means that the mere fact that we’re born in this world means that we have egos and no other proof is required. Hence you don’t need to worry about the fact that you have ego as all of us have it. The only thing you need to do is to assess its strength and then start engaging in the practices which keep reduce it.
This is why people witness that a true saint is willing to help anyone or suffer for anyone; as long as doing so is for positive reasons. Since he operates on the basis of present moment only; facts like whether he may profit from this person or not in future; and whether this person has done something for him or not in the past; don’t affect him at all. It should be noted that you also help people when they need your help and not otherwise. This means that as long as your boss doesn’t want to have a cup of coffee; there’s no point in feeling the need to make coffee for him.
The saint also offers help when there’s genuine need for it and the only difference is that you’re focused on the result of this act of help whereas he’s focused on the act of help itself. Since the result is to appear in the future or it has already appeared in the past; you’re not living in the moment and hence this act is an act of illusion in spiritual sense. If you’re willing to make this cup of coffee for your boss because you fear he’ll get angry at you if you don’t do so and hence you may suffer loss in future; this act is controlled by your ego. Similarly; if you’re willing to make this cup of coffee for your boss because he’s a very good person and he’s given you a number of favors in the past; this is an act of payback based in the past; and hence it too is controlled by your ego.
However, if you’re offering him this cup of coffee as you feel like he needs it and you can make it for him while he’s doing something else which may be important for him; this is an act of conscience since it is rising from the need of the moment and it is not rising from past or future. It is in this case only; that you’re focused on the act of making this coffee and not on the results of this act. If such is the case; you can now make coffee for each and everyone who needs it since you don’t attach any greed, fears or gratitude to this act. This is what makes you a saint since you’re focused on the karma of making coffee and not on the result of this karma.
This brings us back to the two most important factors; the desire element and the need to focus on karma. As soon as you start focusing on the karmas instead of their results in the deepest sense; all your problems go away. When it comes to get attached to results; it is only the desire element within you which ties you to the results and hence the desire element is in the root of everything. Since the saint has crossed this stage; which means he doesn’t have desires and he’s able to focus on the karma; he has the ability to decide on the basis of what is right or wrong in the present moment.
Going back to the example, when it comes to die for an unknown country, you have no attachments to this country and hence the decision to die for this country or even the wish to die for this country can come from conscience and conscience alone. Ego always works on the principal of profit and loss as well as on the principal of attachment; whereas conscience works on the principal of right or wrong as well as on the principal of universal well being. Hence a person ruled by conscience may fight for his country as well as for any other country which needs him and such need is genuine. On the other hand, a person ruled by ego may die only for his country and he may not even think of dying for any other country.
This reminds me of a meaningful incident from the epic Mahabharata. The final war is all set to start between the armies led by Yudhishthir and Duryodhana. Millions of men are ready to fight from each side and just when the formal announcement for this war is about to be made, Yudhishthir says something very important. He conveys to the warriors in his army as well as to the warriors in Duryodhana’s army that this is not just any war and it is a significant war between right and wrong.
He says that the purpose of this war for him is to establish the right by fighting the wrong. He adds that this is why every warrior should fight this war, not due to encouragement from his ego but he should ask his conscience to make this decision for him. Hence he proposes to all the warriors belonging to both the armies that they should take a moment to ask themselves this question; which side is fighting for the right. If the answer comes in favor of the army they’re already fighting for; it’s all right.
However, if any warrior’s conscience tells him that the army of the opposite side is representing the right in this war and it further tells him to join that army, such warrior is free to do so. Hence he proposes to each and every warrior in both the armies that if they feel like changing the side they’re going to fight for; he’ll welcome it. He concludes that this way; he allows every warrior from his side to join the other side if such warrior feels the other side is representing the right and he’ll welcome every warrior from the opposite side; who thinks that the right is being represented by his side and such warrior wants to join it.
This is a very good example to understand the difference between the working of conscience and ego. If Yudhishthir is a man ruled by ego, he may never be able to make this announcement as it comes with high risk. This is because victory is one of the most important things for ego and the means through which such victory is achieved are secondary. It means that a person ruled by ego may try to win a competition, first by playing fairly but as soon as he realizes that he can’t win by playing fairly, he may start using unfair means so that his victory is ensured.
On the other hand, a person ruled by conscience doesn’t care whether he wins or loses and all he cares for is to play fairly and give it his best. This is one of the basic differences between ego and conscience where the former is absolutely focused on the result which is victory; and hence the karma which is playing in this case, may get out of his focus. Accordingly, he may not be able to pay much attention to the quality or nature of his karma and all he cares for is the result. As long as you initiate most of your karmas after being attached to the results, it is a sign that the percentage of ego in your personality is high, though you may still have conscience.
A man ruled by conscience may however, do what needs to be done in a particular situation and he doesn’t attach to the result. He’s all focused on the karma, which improves the quality as well as the nature of his karma. As already explained in an earlier part of this book; when most of your energy is focused on a point or objective; such objective is likely to be highlighted; which means you may do your best to achieve this objective.
It means when you’re focused on karma; you pay attention to the nature of your karma whereas if you’re focused on the result, you often forget to focus on the nature of your karma. When most of your energy is focused on the objective called result; you may not have sufficient energy left; which may help you decide whether the method adopted by you to achieve this objective is fair or foul; even if the objective itself is fair.
For instance; suppose you love a girl and she loves you too. When it comes to marry each other, the father of this girl disagrees to this marriage due to some reason and the girl refuses to marry against the wish of her father. Loving this girl is fair and there is no problem with that. If the girl chooses to marry you against the wish of her father; your decision to marry her is fair. This is because in the deepest sense, only this girl is entitled to make this decision and no one else has the right to make this decision for her or impose his decision on her; though the social norms may advise against this fact, at times.
If you try to convince this girl to marry you against her father’s wish, by telling her that it should be her decision and not her father’s decision; even that can be called fair to an extent. However, if you try to force this girl, threaten her or her father in a way that you end up marrying this girl or you do any other such thing which is done without considering whether it is fair or unfair and which violates the rule of free will for every soul; it is an act of ego and hence it becomes unfair. In this case, you may hate the fact that she loves her father more than she loves you, which means she should love you the most.
These are the acts of your ego since you’re imposing a number of conditions on her as well as on you; through this thing called love. You’re imposing conditions on her that she must marry you at any cost, she should not love her father more than she loves you and many other such conditions may be there. You’re imposing condition on you that you must do each and everything in your power to get this girl, whether those acts are right or wrong; and if you don’t do so; your love is not true.
Hence your love is corrupted by your ego and it is not pure. As a rule, more is the number of conditions you impose while engaging in anything, like love for the sake of this example; whether such conditions are being imposed on your lover or on you; more is the ego factor and accordingly; less is the factor of pure love.