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Desires are disastrous!

Updated on August 16, 2013

Where the desires lead us?

Desires are dangerous as well as disastrous. There is a proverb in Tamil language which tells, “One should not desire even God! For many readers, this statement may seem irrelevant since the aim of human life is attainment of God or self-realization. First let us examine the idea of ‘God’ itself. Many of us visualize God with a form to their individual liking. The concept of God with a form is only for the beginners of spiritual practices. Here I would like to give a good example. Many of us are aware of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, the famous Guru of Swami Vivekananda. All may be aware that Ramakrishna loved the form of Kali enshrined in Dakshineswar temple near Calcutta. In fact, Ramakrishna treated the idol as real mother and he prayed and played with her as though she is his own mother. His attachment to the form of mother Kali can never be explained. It has to be experienced. Many a times, he used to weep before the idol of Kali, imploring the mother to grant him “Sakshatkar” or direct vision of Goddess. But the mother never fulfilled his wish. One day after prolonged meditation and prayer, Ramakrishna was ready to even take his life, if the mother does not grant her Dharsan (view of goddess) in flesh and blood! At the moment, the Divine mother granted her Dharsan to Ramakrishna, the all-embracing form. In fact Ramakrishna viewed everything around him as the goddess Kali.

After some time, one Bairavi Brahmani, a great saint came to Dakshineswar while going around different pilgrim centers. She came to Ramakrishna on her own and she wanted to give spiritual uplift to Ramakrishna through several methods. Ramakrishna conceded to be her disciple. Once she was telling him to meditate on God. After meditation she enquired about his state. Something was preventing Ramakrishna from attaining perfection. It is the form of Kali. Yes, he has to transcend even the attachment to the form of Kali. But Ramakrishna could not succeed. Hence Bairavai Brahmani took a glass piece and made a deep mark on the brow of Ramakrishna and asked him to concentrate on that point. At last, Ramakrishna could succeed in removing the attachment to the form of Kali. Here we have to remember one thing. Only for identification purpose, we posit form to the formless entity called God. Also, it is not possible for the new entrants to worship God without a form. They have to start with the worship of form and as they advance in their spiritual practices, they will reach the formless aspect of Almighty. Hence it is said in the proverb, ‘one should relinquish the desire for god in order to attain self-realization. We have seen children are taught with the aid of figures and forms while teaching the alphabets. When they advance to higher standards, the necessity of a form is dispensed with and they will be able to construct sentences with the words learned through the alphabet.

Now reverting back to the main theme, let us analyze the consequences of desires in human psyche. Almost all the people in the world are affected by desires of one kind or other! Some desire wealth and properties. Some desires for harmonious relationships. Some want pelf and power. Some desire to become political heavy weights commanding a good following. Some seek knowledge and some pursue research on unknown territories. But none desire for God alone! They seek the help and grace of god for the fulfillment of all their desires. God has created the universe for the joyful co-existence of all beings on earth. But it is man who thwarted the desire of God. He started transgressing in forbidden regions and in the end, he made his existence a hell in the world. We have seen many dictators squandering the public in the name of governing and they made the people miserable by their ways. All the wars are manmade. When the world can live peacefully, it is the rulers who caused strife between different people to reap political benefits. We now witness wide spread anarchy everywhere in the world due to the personal ambitions of certain individual dictators. Many of them squander public money and enjoy their hoardings by leading very luxurious life, owning spacious mansions, amazing gorgeous jewels and dresses, and depriving the public of even a square meal. Likewise, the desires play havoc in every body’s life. Desires should not lead to unbridled greed! We should arrest the desires as they arise in the mind and we should never follow the desires. We lose our precious peace due to the arising of many desires. Live a contented life with what God has blessed us with. None possess all the things of the world. If one is rich, he suffers from diseases. It is God’s dispensation that one should not be rich as well as happy. He should choose either of the one. If he wants to be happy, he should not desire for more and he should be satisfied with what he possess!

Mother Kali worshiped by Ramakrishna!


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