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Karma Sutra: 10 things to remember while journeying through life

Our ticket to reach a destination is knowledge because without knowledge, we will keep getting off at the wrong stations and end up feeling disillusioned.

Written by Ritu S | New Delhi | May 30, 2016 3:51:36 pm
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A man often sees himself as a product, a finished product whereas, like life, he too is a process. As Fritz Perls, psychologist and writer said — the self is not a structure, it is a process. Just as life is not a destination but a journey, man too is not a product but a process. And through his journey of life the product is processed, from involvement to evolvement, from being to nothingness, from ego to egolessness from action to non-action.

In addition, our ticket to reach this destination is knowledge (gyaan). Without knowledge, we will keep getting off at the wrong stations and end up feeling disillusioned.

Although trying out different stations is also a way of learning but when we know where to go, we save time, energy and resources. However, we can even guide the ignorant passengers. So, what knowledge do we need while travelling through our journey of life:

1. Well, first and foremost, the journey will cease someday and nobody travels forever.

2. Some co-passengers maybe pleasant some unpleasant, you just have to put up with them, you cannot jump off the train/mode of transport. Therefore, changing your seat/coach rarely solves it, because every coach is pretty much the same story.

3. Some stopovers might be favourable, some unfavourable . Not all stopovers are unfavourable and not all favourable. It teaches us equanimity.

4. Some people may reach their destination sooner than others. But each one of us has to wait one way. For those who reached the destination earlier on the way to, have to wait longer on the way back. Likewise those who had to wait much on the way to their destination reach earlier on the way back. So there’s no point in envying anybody, we are all in the same boat.

5. We can carry our baggage on our own and travel or we can let the mode of transport carry it for us. Either way it will reach the destination, but the choice of whether to make our journey light or burdensome rests with us.

6. We can also spend sleepless nights worrying about whether we will reach the destination or not or we can trust the driver.

7. We can either utilise our time enjoying the landscape and the company or sleep through the entire journey. Worse still, pick a fight with our co-passengers and travel the rest of the way sorting it out.

Read all the Karma Sutra columns here

8. Having travelled back and forth several times, we outgrow the experience of the journey and look for a permanent destination. We choose to become a part of the vast expanse rather than one of the many passengers.

9. The exit from the journey does not lie in foolishly jumping off the vehicle but to read the fine print on the ticket.

10. Finally, the fine print says: Seek and you shall find.

Therefore, it is here that knowledge is replaced by wisdom, mind is replaced by intellect and we begin our search for that which is eternal. Like Badrayana’s statement, ‘athato brahma jigyasa’, in the Brahmasutra-Maxims about the ultimate, which means ‘Now begins the inquiry into the ultimate’; we set out on our personal inquiry in quest for the ultimate and impersonal reality, the final destination where our journey terminates.

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