How does one find the right path to attain peace?
From: Satyam Mishra
Does striving for the right goal is the beginning of self realization? Sometimes people become frustrated by their bosses, friends,spouse, etc. but they again find shelter in drinking, chatting to friend or any other material shelter which provides a temporary relief. So when can a person really and seriously strive for attaining peace.
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Transcribed by: Shalini Ahluwalia
Question: Does striving for the right goal comprise the beginning of self-realization? Sometimes people become frustrated by the bosses, friends, spouse etc. but they again find shelter in drinking, chatting with friends or any other material shelter which provides a temporary relief. So when can a person really and seriously strive for attaining peace?
Answer: For us to attain real peace through self-realization there are two things required – (i) sadhan and (ii) sadhya. Sadhan is the means and sadhya is the goal. When we have both of them correct then we can attain peace.
It is like when a person is sick he needs to know what is the exact goal (e.g. I have to return back to health) and what is the exact means (e.g. I have to take this particular treatment). Unfortunately, if some people feel sick and instead of going to a doctor they just drink or take a pain killer and make themselves feel better, that doesn’t last for long. Similarly, the inevitable frustrations that we experience in life are symptomatic of a deeper malaise, deeper problem. That deeper problem is that material existence itself is miserable. And that is because this existence is a diseased condition – bhavarog – the disease of materialism. So we need to take shelter of the right doctor and take the right treatment. Lord Krishna is the right doctor and the method of bhakti yoga that He has taught in the Bhagavad Gita is the right treatment.
How will people who don’t know anything about this come to this knowledge and understanding?
At one level it is their sincerity. If they are sincere in trying to find out a solution they just turn to the Supreme Lord and say, “my dear Lord I want to find a way out, please help me”, then Krishna will guide such people to the right place. Krishna is actually waiting to guide all living beings who just have to seek His guidance. In the initial stage you may not know which is the right way but if we genuinely, sincerely pray to Krishna for guidance, He will guide us to the right way. Another way people can connect to Krishna is through His devotees. Those of us are already having Krishna consciousness we should also consider it our responsibility to help people find the right way by presenting Krishna consciousness in a logical, sensitive, and appealing way so that people feel it is relevant and helpful and adds value to their lives.
To summarise, when we find the right means and understand the right goal then we can actually attain peace. The frustration of this world prompts us to look for the right means and right goal but our sincerity, devotees’ guidance, and Krishna’s mercy – all these three contribute to helping us attain actually the path to peace.