Swami ji said …
The joy and happiness that had filled our heart when we had finally received the toy that we had longed for as a child ; secured a bicycle as an adolescent ; bought a car or a house as an adult – is an emotion that we find very difficult to forget. We believe that life has blessed us with something that we not only desired but also needed. There is sincere appreciation for what we had and have managed to obtain. A child finds joy in playing with a toy for the first time, treating it with love and care. We feel that our daily commutes are much easier when we travel in our own vehicle. We feel a sense of empowerment when we are able to afford a holiday on our own, and , feel a sense of accomplishment when we buy our own house.
Yet, sadly, this contentment is short lived. The mind, over time, starts looking at what others around us possess and shortly comparison replaces contentment; and envy and angst replace thankfulness – and our happiness is short – lived. And, gradually, what we have – becomes irrelevant and what we don’t possess – begins to haunt our minds.
We begin to compare ourselves and our conditions with those of others. The mind is gleeful when we feel we are better off than others , and , seethes with jealousy on seeing those better off than us. There is no peace, and , the mind constantly flip flops in this extreme state – causing us unnecessary stress and tension.
Comparison, thus, not only kills all joy, but, needlessly also lowers our self esteem too. We need to put an end to this game of comparison that we love to play all the time – unless it inspires us to emulate the values and principles of others and become better and nobler version of ourselves.
We perhaps do not even realize it, but , the mind constantly assesses and compares us with others – our standing in society – as compared to where others stand. And while we might not be able to subdue such a thought process altogether, it becomes important for us to remain detached from the chaos it churns within us and stay unaffected by it. We need to put an end to this habit of constantly comparing between any two things that we see or visualise – be it day and night , salt and pepper , summer or winter – between children, between siblings. ‘ आनंद और अपनापन खत्म होता है…jab hum tulna karte hain bacchon ke beech mein, rishtedaaron ke beech mein.’
The best way to achieve this is by focusing on our own journey of life – rather than being consumed by what is going on in the other person’s life – his meteoric rise – his newly acquired wealth and status in society. We must cherish every little blessing that God has gifted us with and take joy in drawing out the most from those precious gifts – to our advantage. We must recognise that all that we have been given – is most suited for us, and, only when deemed fit by Him – shall we receive something else.
Yes, it is important to aspire in life – for a better career, more wealth, better health etc., and , it is only by observing others can we learn to aspire for more. But we must ensure that this does not lead to envy and stress. We must dream, and chase those dreams – but at the same time we must appreciate – that what we have in our life is what God expects us to utilize in furthering ourselves.
Does a ‘saccha sant’ , a self realised ‘ guru ‘ ever draw a comparison between his devotees ? He loves his devotees in equal measure and showers his Grace equally on each devotee of his without expecting anything in return from them. He understands the uniqueness of each devotee and accepts the differences – gifted to them by God – with open arms. Nothing matters to a ‘sadguru’ – neither his devotees’ status nor possessions ! All that matters to Him is the devotee’s eagerness to seek liberation from the cycle of birth and death and merge with Him and God.