Material consciousness breeds negativity
It is very difficult to change one’s consciousness but it is possible by the right practice, writes AJIT KUMAR BISHNOI
Let us first understand what consciousness is. I will take help of the Bhagavad Gita for this purpose, from which we learn that a soul is neither born nor dies; he is eternal. (2.20) “Soul carries his consciousness to the next body.” (8.6) So what did we understand from these verses? That there is continuity from one life to the next; we begin from where we left off in the previous life. And this is done through the medium of consciousness, which is an intrinsic quality of the soul.
Now that we have a broad understanding of what consciousness is. Let us use this famous example to gain further clarity. Mozart was born in
1756 in Austria. At the age of three, he showed signs of remarkable talent. He learnt to play the harpsichord, a keyboard instrument related to the piano, at the age of four. He was composing music when five. When he was six, he played for the Austrian empress in her court in Vienna.
All our worthwhile goals like peace, ie absence of material disturbances like depression, fear, anxiety, etc.; and sense of happiness, which includes satisfaction, joy, enthusiasm, awareness and sense of security are linked to our consciousness. Once consciousness is purified, these are automatically achieved. In pure consciousness, one does not fear death; feels secure; and enjoys bliss.
However, when this consciousness gets polluted, and we begin to believe that money, possessions and physical comforts are more important than spiritual values, then, our consciousness has turned material. This hurts in many ways. Such consciousness breeds negativity; will generate negative emotions like aggression. One is likely to suffer from depression, anxiety attacks, frustration, hopelessness, etc; one will face mental peace; and is likely to suffer from mood swings. Real happiness will elude such persons. Human values will be causality in such persons. And interpersonal relationships will be guided more by selfish interests than genuine love; families come under strain due to such consciousness.
In this article, I will focus on negativity, caused by material consciousness, and such negativity hurts, really hurts in many ways. One suffers. Peace will be lost. Where, then, is the question of happiness. One will be fearful, which leads to the feeling of helplessness. In this mood, one demoralises oneself, and produces bad vibrations, which affect near and dear ones. Physical health is likely to take beating. And there will be wastage of energy, which could have been used for productive purposes.
The important question this throws is: how does one prevent one’s consciousness from turning material? To begin with, one must try to live according to the divine instructions contained in our scriptures like the Bhagavad Gita. Once someone does it, he or she will begin to focus on what one can do rather than worry about what may happen. (2.47) The next important step is to seek help directly from God. Prayers are the best means. However, a prayer should be to seek guidance and not an order to God to do this or that.
One must make attempts to develop positive qualities like sense control, mind control, austerity, cleanliness, tolerance, simplicity, non-violence, patience, compassion and love for others. An attempt to control negative emotions like lust, anger, greed, pride, envy, violence, etc. must also go side by side. Without doubt, it is very difficult to change one’s consciousness but it is possible by the right practice. (6.35) One needs to pursue this goal with strong determination and results will gradually come. Benefits of doing so are enormous; one will never regret having chosen this path.
Bishnoi is a spiritual writer and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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