The Bhagwad Gita is an unparalleled treatise on yoga that shows how everyone can lead a successful life while following the path of Dharma.
It not only espouses the principles of righteous conduct; its teachings, taken in the appropriate context, could present solutions to current pressing problems.
Crimes against women, who make up roughly half of humanity, are now recognised as a major issue, and a violation of women’s human rights. Most of the violence to women is perpetrated by someone close to the women.
Awareness campaigns and laws cannot stop this; they have only slightly mitigated the problem. The solution is spiritual. Any crime or evil action begins in the mind, and it is there that the remedy must be applied. Crimes against women are rooted in lust and anger, both of which are characterised in the Gita as gates to hell.
The Gita says, “Given over to egoism, power, haughtiness, lust and anger, these malicious people hate Me in their own bodies and those of others,”
Anger, and greed, are also at the roots of two other major scourges of our lives: violence, including wars, and corruption.
Where wars erupt, suffering and hardship invariably follow. This is true of violence on a smaller scale as well. Even verbal or emotional violence robs one of peace of mind, and no man can know happiness without peace, the Gita says.
As for greed, it hollows one out, driving one to seek fulfilment in ever newer objects of desire. Avarice drives away contentment, and if one’s desires are not fulfilled, one becomes angry. Once angry, one’s ability to reason and think clearly is skewed, and from anger arises delusion. Delusion leads to loss of memory or denial, and then one begins to lose conscious awareness of one’s own spirit, which the Gita calls the death of the spirit.
Lasting peace and happiness can be found only by freeing the self from vices, and the first step to doing that is to remember who we really are – that we are souls, not bodies.
The soul, in its original state, is an embodiment of purity, peace, love and truth. When we live with the awareness of being a soul, these qualities are manifested in our thoughts, words and actions. There is no scope for vices to influence the mind.
It is only with this awareness that the soul can connect with the Supreme Soul. The delusion of being a body acts as a barrier that prevents the soul from reaching God. When this delusion is removed, communion between the soul and its spiritual parent, the Supreme Soul, becomes possible. This communion heals, comforts and nourishes the soul, as it experiences the love, peace and power of the Supreme.
The soul thus empowered is able to free itself from the influence of vices, and it is no longer guided by selfish motives. Consequently, it does not perform actions that cause sorrow, whether to the self or others.
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