॥ વચનામૃત ॥

Vartal-17

An Enlightened Person Has Conquered His Indriyas

On Posh vadi Amās, Samvat 1882 [6 February 1826], Swāmi Shri Sahajānandji Mahārāj was sitting on a cushion with a cylindrical pillow that had been placed in the haveli facing the mandir of Shri Lakshminārāyan in Vartāl. He was dressed entirely in white clothes. At that time, an assembly of all of the sādhus as well as devotees from various places had gathered before Him.

Then Shriji Mahārāj asked a question: “Each of the five gnān-indriyas and the five karma-indriyas have total knowledge of their respective vishays. Furthermore, both an enlightened person and an unenlightened person behave in the same manner through their indriyas; i.e., the indriyas of the enlightened do not behave in a different manner from those of the unenlightened. However, the enlightened person is said to have conquered the indriyas; how can this be so? That is the question.”

Muktānand Swāmi replied, “It seems that a person conquers his indriyas when he attains nirvikalp samādhi.”

Thereupon Shriji Mahārāj said, “Even one who has attained nirvikalp samādhi indulges in the panchvishays through the indriyas just like everyone else; so how can he be said to have conquered his indriyas?”

Muktānand Swāmi made many attempts to answer the question, but he was unable to give a satisfactory solution.

Then Shriji Mahārāj said, “The answer is that he realises that there is only misery in the panchvishays, i.e., sounds, touch, etc. He also realises that there are only redemptive attributes in the form of God. He even realises that by indulging in worldly vishays, the jiva is condemned to the pits of narak, where he is compelled to suffer terrible miseries. Having realised this, he develops an intense aversion and a sense of enmity towards the panchvishays. There is no way one will harbour affection towards something with which one has such enmity. One who realises this, and then develops an extreme aversion in his mind towards the panchvishays can be said to have conquered his indriyas. Subsequently, he spends the rest of his life offering bhakti to God in the form of listening to talks of God, singing devotional songs, etc. But, unlike a non-believer, he does not become attached to the panchvishays. Such a person is known to have conquered his indriyas.”

Then Shriji Mahārāj asked another question: “Suppose there is a renunciant who has adopted the path of nivrutti. He realises himself to be the ātmā and does not believe his body to be his true form. Also, his physical behaviour is rather eccentric and erratic. This man does not harbour any vanity of gender, caste or āshram. The manner in which he eats, drinks, rises and sits is all rather eccentric - it does not seem to match the norms of society. Such a renunciant does not stay in anyone’s company; he is like a young deer in a forest wandering alone in a carefree manner. In no way can he be bound by anything.

“On the other hand, there is another renunciant who, despite also having adopted the path of nivrutti, behaves in accordance with the path of pravrutti. In fact, when he engages in pravrutti that brings out vicious natures such as lust, anger, avarice, infatuation, arrogance, matsar, desires, cravings, etc., in his heart, it even causes some sort of disturbance in his heart. So, is it appropriate for such a renunciant to continue following the path of pravrutti? If he does remain on the path of pravrutti, how could he remain undisturbed? If you say, ‘If he follows the path of pravrutti by God’s command then he will not become attached to anything,’ then one can argue, ‘If one drinks bhang by God’s command, does that mean he will not become delirious? Of course, he will become delirious.’ How, then, can that renunciant follow the path of pravrutti and not become attached to anything? That is the question.”

Hearing this, Nityānand Swāmi and Shuk Muni attempted to give an explanation but were unable to present an accurate reply.

Then Shriji Mahārāj said, “The renunciant who abides by nivrutti dharma only and who behaves in an eccentric manner should be known as one who has only the virtue of ātmā-realisation. On the other hand, the renunciant who has adopted nivrutti dharma but also offers bhakti to God should vigilantly adopt the path of pravrutti related to God and His devotees while staying within the niyams prescribed by God. In fact, adopting the path of pravrutti in order to serve God and His devotees is the very definition of bhakti.

“The renunciant who has adopted the path of nivrutti and who has only the virtue of ātmā-realisation can never be equal to the renunciant who has adopted the path of pravrutti. This is because although the latter is also a renunciant who has adopted the path of nivrutti, he engages in pravrutti for the purpose of being able to serve God and His devotees. Such a person should stay on the path of pravrutti while abiding by the niyams prescribed by God. However, he should never overdo or under-do his observance of those niyams. While discarding vicious natures such as lust, anger, avarice, infatuation, desires, cravings for taste, etc., he should follow the path of pravrutti for the purpose of serving God and His devotees. As a result, he will never become attached to anything. Compared to the renunciant who has only the virtue of ātmā-realisation, this renunciant is far superior, and it is he who earns the grace of God.”

Vachanamrut ॥ 17 ॥ 217 ॥

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