The Mirror Of The Self ► [28] Leshya Meditation - 3

Posted: 10.03.2009

Importance Of Freedom

Ever since man developed the capacity to think, he has cherished freedom. He has given it the greatest importance. Aspiring after freedom even in the face of hunger and starvation, he sounded the note, "Slavery must not be tolerated under any circumstances! Freedom is far more important than filling the belly!" This idea has dominated his thinking for thousands of years. How to achieve freedom and preserve it? That has been man's eternal quest.

 

In The Language Of The Agamas

In the language of the Agamas, it may be said that with an increase in the quantity of krishna leshya, a country goes down and its independence is lost. When tejoleshya increases, the country makes progress and its freedom is preserved. One of the attributes of krishna leshya is increased influx of karman. That question arises as to what endangers our freedom. Violence, terrorism, crime, rape, thieving, dacoity, falsehood, hypocrisy and deceit - all these are the consequences of krishna leshya. These pose the greatest danger to our freedom.

 

The Nature Of Present-Day Politics

Whenever I read the statements and remarks of political leaders, a question arises in my mind. Should politics be conducted only on the basis of negative feelings? Can an election be won only by finding fault with one's rivals? How wonderful it would be if politics is inspired by a constructive approach! If some really creative work is put in by him, a candidate will not have to exert too much to win an election. The problem is - there is too little constructive work; only a great deal of manipulation to win the election by abusing or humiliating rival parties.

When we look at the character and conduct of those who are about to hold the reins of the entire nation, we are filled with misgivings at the prospect of entrusting them with the destiny of the country. Whether it is the market place, or the street corners or at various gatherings, we find the negative approach at work everywhere. Attempts to downgrade others continue. In these circumstances, one wonders whether the country can be run on the basis of negative emotions, or if the nation can become prosperous or freedom kept intact. The character of the present-day Indian politics does not seem to offer any solution to these problems.

 

What Really Matters Is Conduct

Leshya is associated with bright colours and emotions. It is also linked with good conduct. As long as one's conduct is not good, one's feelings too cannot be generous. Conduct alone is of value. Unless good conduct becomes universal in society, no development of a refined consciousness is possible. If one's conduct is virtuous, it would of itself attract good feelings and colours. An individual takes a vow and develops will-power. From austere living accrue good thoughts and feelings and a constructive point of view.

 

Let Consciousness Of Vow-Taking Awaken

The religion propounded by Lord Mahavir is the religion of good conduct and observation of vows. For an ascetic, five great vows were prescribed; for a householder, 12 small vows. The essence of all these vows is promotion of good conduct. Without the observation of vows, self-control and sadhana, nothing good can materialize in life. Whether it is a question of individual or social freedom, it can be durable only if one develops the con­sciousness of vows and resolution. The problem is that we are not at all interested in observing vows. We heard the Prime Minister's speech delivered from the ramparts of the Red Fort on Inde­pendence Day. He expressed the nation's gratitude to eminent men for distinguished service in various fields, but of those who have started a holy campaign for morality and good conduct and for the establishment of self-control and observance of sacred vows, he made no mention at all! Which is rather strange.

 

Necessity Of Establishing Self-Control

The establishment of self-control and self-restraint is the crying need of today. Until this spiritual consciousness, the consciousness of self-restraint and renunciation, is awakened, it would be very difficult to keep our freedom intact in this self-centred world. Let us utilize our energy in this direction. How to awaken shukla leshya and tejoleshya? How to incorporate in our lives observation of vows, great and small? How to awaken the spirit of spirituality in wholly self-centred man? How to strengthen the desire for observation of vows? How to awaken the spirit of renunciation in a man wholly given to pleasure and self-gratification? Keeping all these questions in view, the Anuvrat Movement has endeavoured to ignite the torch of renunciation. If self-restraint is not established in society, our freedom may be endangered at any time, not only by foreign invasion, but also by an invasion from within.

 

Burning Issues And The Way To Resolve Them

Let us look at the situation prevailing in the country. There are the Assam problem, the Punjab problem and the Kash­mir problem. The crisis in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar is no less grave. At some places regionalism poses a danger; at other places, it is casteism, or there is a temple-mosque controversy. On the one hand, indiscipline is increasing, on the other hand, these problems are hindering the progress of the country. Let all men resolve to observe self-restraint, to move in the direction of vir­tuous conduct. Conduct inspired by this resolution would help purify our leshya. When our conduct is pure, with an increase in the effects of tejoleshya, padma leshya and shukla leshya, the value of true freedom would be established among the people.

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