“He who lives without folly is not as wise as he may think”– La Rochefocauld
Even Yudhistir maharaj was bewildered; he thought he was responsible for all the killing in the war of Mahabharata. Earlier he waged his own wife in a gambling match. If the personification of religion, Emperor Yudhistir, can be bewildered by the inconceivable swinging fortunes of this world, what to speak of lesser mortals like us. Arjuna, a warrior who never lost any battle succumbed to pressure just before the most crucial war of his life. The bow slipped from his hand, and he was confused about his duties. He broke down and sat bewildered in his chariot.
It’s only natural that despite our best intentions and sincere efforts, a time would come in our lives when we are lost and confused. Our good sense may get covered and we may land ourselves in a big mess. The confusions could make us emotionally and spiritually weak. What do we do then?
The only thing that can save us during such times is ‘satsang’– good association.
If we can somehow ensure we have association of good hearted people and if we have the humility to hear from them and be with them, we’d be safe during the turbulent phase of our lives.
Such association gives birth to determination to practice spiritual life despite the emotional instability. However we have our free will all the time, and it’s our choice to use our freedom in the best interests of the soul. As life gets tough, sincere devotees hold on to spiritual activities in the association of other loving devotees of Krishna. God recognizes this sincerity and helps us emotionally survive the calamity.
Sincerity is the key; we may have the best friends and well-wishers surrounding us, but if we remain cynical and ungrateful, we’d not reap any benefits from this association.
How do we develop sincerity?
Sincerity is determined by what we aspire for and what we do to hold on to our aspirations. And if we have sought a life of good character and strong spiritual standards, then the illusory forces of this world-called as maya– would work twenty four hours daily, and vehemently to distract us from our avowed goals. At such times our free will is tested. With all determination if we uphold principles, that’s sincerity. And that explains how sometimes even mediocre people with not many skills, but with a sincere desire to serve in the right association make tremendous progress and shine through a crisis. On the other hand, extremely talented individuals but lacking sincerity, succumb to emotional pressures.
Therefore association and sincerity-which means two things-our aspirations and determination-helps us remain emotionally strong during crisis.