Kṛṣṇa continues to explain to Arjuna how difficult it is to control the senses and what happens when one loses control of the senses.
Kṛṣṇa says that our senses are turbulent, and however much we try to control them, they stay out of control. He says that the only way is to integrate and fix one’s mind on Him once the senses are under control and the mind is steady. The mind cannot be stopped. Thoughts cannot be stopped as long as the body exists. You can bring integrity to your thinking by doing completion with your root patterns. Thus integrating your mind on something that transcends sensory pleasures, it will become quiet by itself. Once the mind discovers the bliss of this completion, it will never want to stray again.
A small story:
A man, intent on spiritual progress, went to a master and begged him to teach him how to control his mind. The master tried to explain that the mind couldn’t be controlled in the way he was seeking, by stopping his thoughts, but he wouldn’t listen. Fed up, the master gave him a bottle of a liquid and told him to drink three drops three times a day.
The man asked, ‘That’s it? It will control my mind?’
The master said, ‘Just one thing, make sure you don’t think of a monkey when you drink the medicine.’
‘Oh, sure, quite simple!’ said the man as he walked out. At the door he turned and asked, ‘By the way, in case I do think of a monkey, what should I do?’
‘Take a shower,’ said the master, ‘and try again.’
As soon as the man went home, he took out the medicine and opened his mouth to drink it. Just then he remembered the master’s warning—and remembered the monkey!
‘Oh, my God!’ he said to himself, ‘Now I have to take a shower. What else to do!’
You can guess the rest of the story. Each time he opened his bottle of medicine, monkeys invaded his mind and all he did was keep taking showers. It got to a point where as soon as he got out of the shower, thoughts of monkeys arose in his mind. He ran to the master and pleaded, ‘Forget the medicine. Just get rid of the monkeys, please!’
You can never destroy thoughts or suppress them. Suppression does not work on the mind, only completion does. Suppressed emotions solidify as a volcano of root patterns and explode when they get the chance. You can only complete with thoughts by doing self-completion with them, and gradually the mind will settle down. Lack of integrity is nothing but suppressing your thoughts and putting all your problems under the carpet.
Please understand, however much you try to push the incomplete conversations with you under the carpet, they do not die. They run around under the carpet like Tom and Jerry cartoon! In the same way, the incompletions pushed under your inner space, say, ‘No, no, no! Why are you asking too many questions? Somehow I will win. Keep quiet!’ Without completing, if you push your own questions under the carpet, they will not die or keep quiet. Today or tomorrow, you have to face those questions. You have to face that part of you.
When you do completion and settle into the present moment, with no expectations and no attachments, you will find that your inner space becomes quiet and your senses slow down.
Kṛṣṇa says that from attachment springs desire, from desire arises anger, from anger arises delusion, from delusion comes loss of memory, and from loss of memory develops loss of discrimination which then leads to one’s destruction. The only way to stop this, the Lord says, is to control one’s senses, complete with oneself and surrender to Him, the Universal energy, and achieve everlasting peace.
The map has been so clearly laid down by the greatest Master, not because He wants you to follow it, but because in His infinite grace and compassion He is making you aware of what is in store for you if you do. He teaches that if you do not control your senses, you will be destroyed. Go through each of these stages laid down by the Master. The path will be crystal clear. Each one of us develops attachment, liking, hatred and dislike for many things through our experiences. These likes and dislikes stay in our unconscious memory as root thought patterns and even without any conscious awareness on our part, drive us into actions through desires or into inaction through fears. When the desires are fulfilled, there is temporary satisfaction; then the desires grow. When the desires do not get fulfilled we are disappointed, we get angry.
We should be angry with our own selves for having had the desires or for not having worked with authenticity, wholeheartedly at the peak of our capability towards fulfilling the desire, but we actually get angry with other people who we think are responsible for our failures. We do not realize that blaming others will make us feel more and more powerless!
Kṛṣṇa reveals two very important truths here in the last two verses. One is that you can never be peaceful unless you are complete, conscious. The other is that you cannot be complete if you are led by your senses. Therefore, as long as your senses lead you into what you think is a pleasurable journey; you cannot really be happy or peaceful. It is just another trick your mind is playing on you. Your happiness is not real happiness. It is just a gap between two periods of sorrow. What you hear, what you think you hear, what you see, what you think you see, and so on, all these sense inputs are unreliable, incomplete cognitions.
I tell you, with anybody who succeeded, till that success happened, he only failed! But if he had held on to his past record, success should not have happened in his life. This journey never stops all through your life unless you make a serious attempt to complete with it. Your mind, on its own, would never want to stay in the present moment, which is the only moment of truth. Self-completion, svapūrṇatva is the only direct method to reclaim your space of completion. This is your basic right. Reclaim it!
Understand, you can make whatever you can visualize as reality. With integrity and authenticity, visualize yourself in the space of non-falling, moving only from completion to completion, fulfillment to fulfillment. Your past is history. Your past record is the dumping ground of all your regrets and guilt. There is no greater sin that you can commit than carr ing past records of these regrets and guilt. Or your mind dwells in the future, a future that does not exist. You speculate, and dream creating stories and arguments, building a case for your future. If you are questioned, you would say, ‘I need to plan.’ How much of what you plan is based on present reality? There is nothing wrong at all if you are grounded in reality and plan to progress in that reality. That is what I call chronological planning which is necessary if you live in the world. I do it too. For example, it is planning the day ahead, with what time you will wake up, what time you will have the meeting and then return home etc. But most of the time what you do has nothing to do with reality. You either worry about things that you have no control over and plan how to escape such worries, or desire things not in your reach out of sheer greed. Just think with integrity, feel with authenticity and act with responsibility.
Drop the past records. The past track never gives you the confidence, the possibility. Unless you see the possibility, life does not flow in you! Excitement does not happen in you. The past records always bring deep sorrow, because by nature, past records are death. Possibility, by nature, is Life! The past record is neither as bad as you remember, nor worthy of being remembered. Possibility is life. Life is possibility, not past record.
Our senses aid us very ably to see only the past records and project them as worries and desires. They make us believe that all this is real and make us react to situations as if they are real. It is the same way that we get up from a nightmare sweating profusely out of fear. Although just a dream, it makes us sweat. In the same manner, these projections of our mind, even when we are fully awake, appear real to us.
Kṛṣṇa says, ‘Get away from your senses; escape from their control; ground yourself in the completion of the present. Only then can you be at peace. How can there be happiness for one without peace, aśāntasya kutaḥ sukham? (2.66).’
What is this present moment? What is this completion? When we do the self-completion process, our mind and inner space becomes integrated and authentic and stops moving back and forth between the past and future, it will by itself land in the present moment. The present moment is what we are doing now. If you are reading this book, don’t half read this book and half listen to music; don’t half read this book and half talk with someone. Either be complete and focus completely on what you are reading or don’t read at all.
The next time you do anything, bring completion and be integrated to what you are doing at that moment. If you are brushing your teeth, just focus on how the brush moves and how the paste tastes. Stop thinking about the meetings later at your office or getting your children ready for school, or whatever it is that you need to do a few minutes or hours later.
When you settle into the space of completion, you are out of the clutches of your senses and mind. You will still see and hear, but none of what you see and hear will divert you from what you are integrated to doing. You will be aware of only what you are doing in that present moment. This is what we call meditation. Meditation is nothing but being integrated completely to what you are doing at a particular moment.
When you plan for the unimaginable, when your nervous system is loaded with things that you are not able to even comprehend, the excitement that oozes in your nervous system is bliss! Understand, bliss does not come to lazy bums! Bliss does not happen to people caught in the past records. This is what Kṛṣṇa says will lead you into peace and very soon to being steady—prasanna-cetaso hy āśu buddhiḥ paryasvatiṣṭḥate (2.65). When you are complete, your senses are in your control instead of you being under their control. You become peaceful, you are in bliss.