Friday, December 29, 2017


Faith is inherent in human behaviour. Anyway, I can have a look at it. Operationally, I may say, that faith is assumption of something, which is not yet a fact, and yet the assumption provokes and supports the action. When someone accuses another of acting on faith, on blind faith, ignorant faith, this someone assumes a sense of superiority, in the sense that his own personal actions are based on absolute, known and demonstrable certainties. Is this true; are there some people who are blessed or cursed by faith; and others are consistently driven by facts, so-called.

I need light in the room. I go to the electric switch on the wall assuming that light will come on. Of many possible results of which the light not coming on, my getting a shock and so on, are some, I act on the assumption that the light will come on - one of the many assumptions. Not all statistical jugglery will escape the conclusion that my active getting up and putting on the switch was based on the yet to be proven assumption that the light will come on. If I had absolute knowledge one way or another I will or will not move.

In every single act of the present human being this ‘faith’ in something not know, not here literally dominates the impulse in a final action, of almost all kinds. It can be noted straight away that this faith can be amplified as a faith in a particular result, often a favourable or pleasant one.

Let me take a few more examples to illustrate the phenomenon of faith.

A soldier goes to battle ordered by his commander, who is ordered by his government on the faith of justice, truth, victory and many other words which cannot be defined. Victory is an assumption, faith in which assumption is an important element in the victory itself. However much one may mouth phrases like dash overcomer victory or death we will fight, nobody will believe that a General building digital if he knows beforehand that an earthquake in the region is going to wipe out his whole Army or even have knowledge that is crack regiments will cross over to the enemy. What determines action in the present human context is faith in the assumption, in the certainty in one result as against the numerous other possible results.

A man places Rs 1000 in a bank on the assumption, the faith, that in five years time it will give him Rs 1200 and that this might come handy for his son at college. He does this in the commonly shared faith that the bank does not go bankrupt, that inflation does not swallow up even the Rs 1000 that his son might spend the amount in a bar; he himself might not live to see any result at all. He acts on faith.

It is said that Raja Yudhisthira of the Pandavas was said to have been asked: What is the strangest thing you know of: and he remarked: The fact that knowing death to be inevitable and unpredictable everyone acts if he is immortal. Now, looking at this closely one sees this to be a fundamental activity underlying all other acts of faith. The point is that everyone acts on the faith that he will be alive the next minute, or hour or day, or year. It is not enough to say, ‘I am not afraid of death’ or of even admitting to oneself that his actions might certainly end in death. The crux of the matter is would I do exactly, precisely the particular act or movement if I know for certain that death exactly lies at the end of that. Would it not affect the course of that act or even its impulsion?

By the very nature of our sensory limitations we can only, at the theoretical or statistical maximum, become aware of that perceptual field and its possibilities that affect us. Beyond lies a vast zone of what is contingent to us. And only a very rash man can say that his actions do not have their basis on an illusory faith in some assumptions of his own.

All human behaviour is a progression of acts of faith in some potential goal or other given the cloak of some socially acceptable terms - religious faith, statistical faith, rational faith, and so on. Of course, it is a more spectacular kind of faith for an American to sit in a spaceship thinking it will go to the moon, but find it blowing him up in pieces, than the faith the villager getting into his bullock cart and finding himself in the nearest ditch instead of the nearest village.

Yet another popular baiting is to talk of everybody else's superstitions, omens and so on. The point of my inquiry is not to evaluate the relative merits of kinds of faith. My point is faith: Faith in something which is not yet a fact, as a determinant of present action is a fact of human behaviour. It is a property or faculty and not the particular affliction of some misguided and barbarian bumpkins.

Therefore for the student of self-realisation, the question is not whether faith is good or bad - there is little to be gained by hair-splitting between solid faith and blind faith - but to inquire into and experiment with the possibility of using this property of faith towards a better level of behaviour.


Wednesday, December 27, 2017


Science is a glorified name given to the greatest common factor among the largest number of similarly trained individuals.

To attempt to subject the whole of the universe to this average consensus, however sophisticated, is what creates increasingly tragic consequences.

Botany is the art of making bigger and better trees to be cut up and sold or look at for the benefit of man and his exact prototype, his grandson. It is not the science of trees.

Zoology is the art of producing better and fatter pigs for the table of man. It is not the science of pigs.

Nuclear physics is the art of making bigger and better bombs or giving cheap light to millions who cannot clearly see even in broad daylight. It is not the science of the world around us.

Then what is science? The total man - the man with the ‘I’ owning responsibility for its own body, interacting with the trees, the animals, and man, and the world around, is the foundation of scientific man. This, too, is a process of practice and inquiry which some have undertaken in the past and might continue to do. For such a man objective science, too, becomes a part of the world around him and he deals with it in his quest.


Friday, November 17, 2017


I have an office. The table is full of files. Communications come from many sources. One by one I deal with them. Some are immediately attended to. Some are noted for a higher office authority or authority. Some are kept pending.

My mind's office is the same.

Communications come from different sources:

  1. By the things one sees, one hears; through letters and telephone calls - but all ultimately through one or the other of the senses.
  2. Memories of places, persons, things, and times.
  3. Thoughts of persons, things, places and times.
  4. Feelings about this or that.
  5. Sensations.

Now all these individual routes bring something to awareness: and each one of them provokes responses in the others zones; and an end result may or may not appear in action through muscles etc. A sensation of heat might provoke memories of certain places; a depressive thought may provoke a depressive feeling; and a depressive feeling might call in depressive thoughts; by chance word heard in the market leads to some chain of thought and so on. Thus the office of the mind is cluttered with this ceaseless input of information almost chaotic in its complexity. Somewhere all this jumble of input currents may result in an action for which our reasoning supplies a justification, or none, or starts contradictory impulses of action. Since the instrument has not been trained for some method of dealing with this vast input, and the machine has been designed to receive such fast inputs from different sources, lot of inner friction and inertia develops and leads to considerable ineffectiveness, as also wear and tear.

It is obvious that I have little control over the inputs. I seem to have some sort of control over the action or output; and I can pay attention to things I can somewhat control.

It seems to me that ultimately action is back by some strength of feeling. I also observe that negative emotions like anger and disgust etc. contribute quite a lot to the resulting action. Anyway, I must adopt some simple and effective method of dealing with information that is pouring into my awareness.

Knowing that information is neither good nor bad excepting by the significances induced into us by our environment, I shall protect my instrument from damage of conflict, by taking a firm decision to meet each item of information with positive good well and as much joy as my body can show.

If this is difficult apply the master-switch; The master of all action to whom all matters must be referred and wait a while.

Do not wish you the things that come to your mind; they do not go away, for they come to your address and seek your attention.

Submit them to positive goodwill - the persons; places, things, times, whatever they maybe; backup your goodwill by a positive creative imagination. If the thought of the health of someone dear to you, and who is at a distance, comes to you, you look at the person in your mind and see him in your mind getting better and better and getting the necessary attention. Change the negative imagery into a positive one. Do not forget that your negative forebodings play a part in precipitating the very things you fear. Also when you have no accurate knowledge of the future, why do you allow your mind to predict negative results only and suffer the consequences of such thoughts first of all in your body?

Where the clamour is from information from sources that provoke negative emotions detrimental to your own behavior and health, submit them to the master or love comma, and meantime control all impulsive action in retort, at whatever point you can control it, thought, speech or action.

Do not encourage disturbance in your office by increasing disorderly elements by supplying them with lawyers and goondas. Someone writes you an angry and insulting letter. You remember him with anger. This spreads - then you recall the number of good things you have done to him, and his present ingratitude; you fill yourself with hatred and your day is ruined. Then you spread this disturbance by talking about this to family and friends. You write back an angry letter and reinforce the vicious circle. Surely you have succeeded in harming yourself more than the mere verbal content of that man’s letter; and you yourself are supplying the energy for the evil intent of your opponent.

But if you spent a few minutes on the good the other person might have done you, and feel a little of the pain that might justly or unjustly be at the basis of the other person’s letter, and you simply kept quiet tell you have dissolved your own hate and anger, at least you would have protected your own system; and quite possibly helped in changing the other man’s attitude. You will learn by practice that this silent goodwill is much more powerful than pages of explanatory letters, each word of which leads to further bundle of emotion.

When in doubt SHUT UP!


Saturday, November 04, 2017


All through I have been in one way or another drawing attention on the mind and its role in behaviour. The Buddha spoke of the mind as the primary organ - all the good or bad has its origin in the mind. Without going into the question of what is the nature of mind some practical points can considered.

By Unknown. via Wikimedia Commons
Is then everything in mind? Is there no objective reality? I can only ask the poser of question to experiment with his own behaviour and its relation to his mind or mental content, with reference to any particular time and action.

Past experience creates basis for present imagination, and this imagination acts as the blueprint for present action. In a passive way this past pattern of behaviour and its memory projected as imagination lays the foundation for the perpetuation of recurring patterns of behaviour. It is as if one is helplessly going round and round like a bullock yoked to a mill stone.

I meet someone today. This person is apparently angry with me and refuses my request. I come home with this sequence in mind. Already my imagination has worked out the drama of my next possible encounter with the man: his possible arrogance, my ready retorts and so on. The next time when I meet him the scene has been set for a recurrence of the drama on a more elaborate but similar pattern. Stereotype is the most economical form of behaviour and also the least creative. Effort is necessary to break out of the shackles of past experience. And in this the role of imagination is supreme.

With some effort I can reorganise my memory of yesterday and recast my imagination for the next act. I can soon see that the whole central point in our meetings is being overshadowed by emotional reactions. I can also see that my perception is distorted or exaggerated. The reasons for the other person's anger may be many more than what I think them to be in reference to my very small self. The other person is as helplessly driven. Since I intend to be in control of my own behaviour I shall try to avoid verbal or gestural behaviour that tends to hurt. I shall politely seek to clarify points concerning the topic in hand. At least it will not complicate matters further.

Imagination is the bridge between will and action. Imagination sets the pattern for action and often it sabotages the will: often determines the will. Only effort can make imagination a good servant of the will.

Similar is the case with the perpetuation of chronic disease: 'Each winter I get asthma; I'm like a barometer! I am an extraordinary fellow, when I have migraine I lose my temper.’ Over a period of years a carefully nursed drama of total behaviour is inducted into the body and the whole richness of possible behaviour is made as an offering to the idol of illness with a disease label in Latin attached to it. There is nothing written as an unalterable law of nature that you should scowl if you have a headache. Most chronic disease is stereotype of behaviour systematised into channels of popularly and ‘scientifically’ cut patterns of uncreative behaviour.

Past experience, through the medium of imagination creates the mill of recurring history called human fate or destiny. The so-called past experiences is merely a selective memory or imagination of a situation with a million facets of which a few pieces satisfying the stultifying ego needs are nursed and treasured. If this highly selective memory forms the basis for my operational imagination I should be careful to become the master of my memories rather than their victim.

Today’s memories are the manure for tomorrow’s yield. Just as a good gardener carefully sifts the fallen leaves of yesterday from the stones in order to prepare the manure, so should I sift my memories. If I collect stones and thorns I should not wonder at the results for the morrow. Careful nurturing of pleasant memories is the most important foundation for making tomorrow pleasant and more creative than today.

Imagination and memory are faculties even like muscles; they need cultivation.

Whether imagination and memory are real or unreal does not concern the aspirant, who seeks to gain greater and greater control in his own behaviour. He will spend some time in careful experiment with the faculties of imagination and memory as they come to his awareness.

Monday, October 23, 2017


This is the commonest complaint, and the mother of all mischief. I am bored, because nothing interests me. But that is not true. Only a few things interest me, and a thousand things do not interest me.

My interests are narrow,  and the world and its plenitude exist for me only to the extent they pander to my excitements.

It is the result of utter parasitic selfishness or ego-centricism.  This recognises no reciprocal obligation to the world. When you feel bored it is a sign that the devil is in the driving seat, and the devil's other names are - disuse, decay, disease and death. Next time I find I am bored and complain that I have nothing to do - I can easily look around and see that there are a hundred interesting and useful things to be done; to be interesting to me, helpful to others, and to repay a debt of gratitude to the world that supports me. There is a room to tidy;  listen to someone talking about his difficulties; to merely look at the grandeur of the sky above you; to watch a squirrel or bird; or just polish your own shoes.

The word ‘bored’ has acquired a flavour sophistication and is very popular with the pampered and utterly self-centered youth from so-called well to do families, who easily feel bored this place, this city, this country, with the school, the family and ultimately with their disgusting selves. This is a physiological truth to be personally experimented with and experienced:




For the self-realisation aspirant it is a matter pride to try and take control of his own body, and he will try.