[Dara Singh Thali. Image courtesy of Exploring Corners]
What would you normally tend to first do when a sumptuous Indian ceremonial full meal is laid out for you? Let us say that the meal spread consists of a variety of dishes made from different vegetables; assorted rice dishes; lentils; a creamy spinach dish; unleavened bread such as nan, roti or chapatis; papadums; a couple of sweet dishes; dessert; and one or two bitter dishes made of bitter gourd and neem leaves. Most Indians remember from their childhood, that due to the instructions they had from their elders to not waste food on the plate, they could not avoid the bitter dishes , which, they were told were good for health, and therefore they had to consume them. In order to comply with the parental instruction, they would first pick the bitter dishes out and quickly swallow them, so that they could take all the time they needed to relish the other delicious dishes.
There are things in life which can never be avoided – past Karma is one great example. It is a bitter truth that a lot of people fail to comprehend. When people face trouble, they resort to praying to their favourite deity to be freed from their troubles and to be blessed with a comfortable and trouble free life. But on the other hand, those who have thoroughly understood the Cause and Effect principle, would never do such a senseless thing of asking to be relieved from trouble simply because escaping the effects of past Karma is just not possible.
His Holiness the great Shankaracharya Shri Chandrashekharendra Saraswati, who is fondly and reverentially known as Kanchi Mahaswamy, Mahaperiyava or Walking God, would advise devotees to literally ask for problems, troubles and challenges in life! No, it is not as bizarre or ludicrous as it may sound but it is the most sensible thing one could do when it comes to balancing one’s Karma by meekly submitting to the natural law that cannot be circumvented. It is something similar to what happened to you in your childhood when you wanted to first finish eating the bitter dishes from the lavish Indian meal spread, before you could go for the luscious ones, only because it was an unbreakable condition laid down by your mother! When you know that you can’t dodge your past Karma, you had rather aim at undergoing and completing tough stages before you graduate to a better Karmic level of your life, in which, you can start enjoying better things.
Rather than asking for relief from challenging experiences in life, it would be wiser, Karmically speaking, to ask to be blessed with the possibility of ‘quickly’ undergoing challenges, learning from them and being done with them at the earliest. That would be the way to get rid of past Karma because it happens to be the only ‘Karma balancing procedure’ at all! There is absolutely no point trying to run away or escape from your past Karma because sooner or later, it will anyhow hunt you down, just as your positive past Karma with its bountiful Karmic rewards, will come looking for you wherever you are. Never forget that none of your gurus, babas, swamies or astrologers can ever contribute towards having your negative past Karma waived. That is impossible.
So what if new problems crop up in your life? Face them, handle them, clear them and keep moving ahead! You can’t have everything in life. No one can. What you have worked for in the past is what you will get. Such an attitude can turn your troubles into elements of excitement that enrich your life with events, colour, learning and more ‘pages for your book’.
It needs to be repeated that if you are someone who is currently in trouble, whether you are in Sadé Sati, Shani dasha or whatever, it was you who created such a situation through your past Karma! We, the followers of the rational, scientific, logical and natural Sanatana Dharmic, don’t believe in wacky stories such as that of a bearded pervert God in the clouds, who punishes people for not believing in him, for lying, for stealing or for committing adultery! The all powerful natural law of Karma, which has the longest arm, is simply based on Cause or Effect or Sow and Reap!
It’s perfectly alright to be faced by challenges in life, to fall, to suffer insults, to lose, to be rejected, to be cheated, or to be let down by near and dear ones. That is what almost all great successful people did before they arrived at the top! Read about people like Shivaji Maharaj, Maharana Pratap, the Rani of Jhansi, Napoleon Bonaparte and most importantly about Shri Narendra Damodardas Modi!
Trying to see reason through lateral thinking instead of blaming planets, greatly helps in settling the uncontrolled and confused mind which is the source of all problems. A confused mind does not stop with being confused but it confuses all others around you. It is truly a pity to come across intelligent and well read people including engineers, doctors, scientists, mathematicians and other such knowledgeable people, who find it difficult to understand the natural law of Cause and Effect andthink so illogically when it comes to accepting challenges, facing them and deftly handling each one of them in a manner a sane person governed by reason would do.
Never allow self-doubt to take control of your mind because it can create a timorous and wimpish attitude in you. Let troubles come into your life, so that you can vapourise your past Karma soon by balancing it.
Work on building new positive Karma, rise from the past, stand tall and above all, march ahead like a true battle hero.
(Read Shlokas 2:02 and 2:03 from the Srimad Bhagavad Gita. A meticulous read of the entire second chapter followed by that of the entire Gita, would be of great benefit to people facing difficult or adverse situations)
Jai Shri Krishna