Smile Your Way To Success By Keeping Things In Perspective
Success – Once, a young monk was sitting meditating on the shores of a mighty river. An elderly monk came that way and seemed to be waiting for someone or something eagerly. The young monk asked the elderly monk as to what he was waiting for. The elderly monk replied that he was waiting for a ferry to take him across the river.
The young monk had some siddhis (super natural powers), and said, “See I can walk over water in a jiffy by the power of my meditation. Can’t you do so – in spite of the fact that you are much more elderly and possibly more experienced in these matters?” The elderly monk smiled and asked the young monk about the years taken to attain such mastery over the element water. The young monk proudly answered “It is the result of 12 years of intense practice.”
The elderly monk replied “ it takes just 12 bugs to reach the opposite shore by a ferry and was the saadhana of 12 years worth just 12 bugs? Think about it” Just then the ferry came to that place and the elderly monk calmly walked into the ferry and waved goodbye to the young monk.
The young monk realized the futility of his vain pride and decided to focus more on Higher Truths of Universe rather than hankering after siddhis (supernatural accomplishments). Keeping things in right perspective is far more important than showing off merely to satisfy ego.
Now…..if you think for a moment….how many of you do what the young monk did? i.e. focusing all your energies intensely on matters that could be handled in a simpler manner. How many times your ego makes you do things that are better skipped or ignored? In my practice of corporate Astrology and Human resource guidance for working executives, I have often times found that some executives often go overboard with the best of intentions.
Just like the young monk who thought the world of himself but was limited by blinkered vision and devoted all his energies on relatively worthless pursuits, we do sometimes follow goals or strategies that make us “feel good” but without realizing whether or not it is practically feasible.
The lesson of the Elderly Monk is “Be practical and keep things in perspective.” There is no point in trying to be impressive with your achievements or strategies unless your profession is that of a professional showman! The Elderly Monk did not feel belittled by the show of power of the younger monk; he knew what was necessary and he was content with the way he was. Thus should be our attitude towards life – honing skills that are apt to us and giving the other impractical pursuits a go-by – happily, and not feel belittled by show of prowess of others in that regard. This will save us much anxiety in life.
Just because something seems okay to your ego, it does not mean it is okay for everyone around you or even for yourself! That is what the young monk realized and that is what we should all realize.
Energies – even human emotional energy/ resilience/ patience – are finite. You should channelize them along appropriate channels and not waste them unnecessarily. It is good if you can walk on water, but if it is going to take 12 years, it is far wiser to spend 12 bucks and 12 minutes to go in a ferry! It is good if you can take up impossible tasks and make a success out of them – but it is far better if you identify workable strategies and reachable goals, and get your success with far little application of time and energies.
Working scientifically for good productivity is a very good thing – just as a siddhi can be handy in an emergency. But the “need to work scientifically” should not overrule other considerations, and insistence on methods should not cramp the style of others. The methods should be allowed to evolve naturally in the course of well-directed efforts and by observing others intelligently – just as supernatural powers should be allowed to evolve naturally in the course of one’s spiritual progress rather than devoting unrealistic time input on that.
Anyone can succeed – but to succeed effortlessly is what makes a real expert. This is what Spiritual Traditions teach us….strain when you have to – but don’t strain yourself over unrealistic goals. Everything might be possible – but then, not everything is necessary!
The next time someone provokes your ego challenging you saying “This task is impossible for you”…think for a while – whether the task is worth it. If it is worth it, take up the challenge and give it all your worth. Of course, you will succeed. If the task is not worth it in your objective view, just smile the challenge away. This way you will avoid much of the tension and anxiety that is so common in the life of a live-wire executive, and the Spiritual Masters will smile upon your intelligence and Bless you for this with abundant happiness and unending success on your way!
Article by: Pandit R.DAKSHINAMOORTHI