How do we tap our strengths and get rid of our weaknesses?
Time: 4.36 minutes
Transcribed by: Vishvaroopa Das
Question: How do we tap our strength and get rid of our weaknesses?
Answer: In general, it is very difficult to get rid of anything. Thoughts are subtle things and if one has any anarthas like anger, greed etc, these anarthas are real things in our consciousness but they are like mist and one cannot fight mist. It is very difficult to get rid of the mist but it automatically dissipates when the sun rises. Similarly it is difficult to simply drive these negativities by focusing on them for driving them out. Though they cannot be driven out, they can be crowded out. Crowded out means if some positives are brought into our consciousness then our consciousness becomes full with them and gradually the negatives will go into the background till it no longer remains prominent and one does not even recollect it after sometime.
The whole idea of varnashram is that people are engaged according to their strengths. Brahmana’s strength is intellectual, and they are told to do that. Brahmana’s strength is not in money management and this job is allotted to the vaishyas. In the material world there are problem for everyone but the expertise of varnashram was that it allotted to people the kind of problem that they liked to have. The Brahmanas would love to have intellectual challenges. In this way we have to find out that situation in we can use our strengths in best possible way to serve Krishna.
For our weaknesses, we need to learn to manage them. This means that we do not put ourselves in a situation where we get provoked. For example, if a person’s body is prone to cold, they should take appropriate precautions which do not expose them to cold.
Similarly, we need to take precautions with respect to mind also. Some people are prone to more worry or negativity or insecurity. Such people should handle services which involve more stability and order. For example, deity worship, where hard work and high quality is required but there is not much uncertainty. Due to predictability and order in such services, a person whose capacity of taking risk is not very high will feel comfortable doing such services. However, some people actually want adventure. Such people can consider service of preaching which involves traveling, going to new places. It is not about one service being good and other being bad, it is just that people have different natures and they should take service which suits their nature. In the broad ambit of Krishna bhakti whatever service uses our strength one should take it up and become firmly situated in it.
Process of bhakti is required for transitioning from the conditioned stage to the pure stage. In conditioned stage our weaknesses are too strong compared to our strength and pulls us down. In pure stage, the anarthas in our heart have completely melted. It is only the process of bhakti which will take us from conditioned stage to the pure stage. In the intermediate stage, we should find out what helps us to persevere. In the intermediate stage, spiritual joy doesn’t come regularly. However, if we do some service according to our material nature, something which we like to do, we get some joy. Whether the joy is material or spiritual, it is not important. What is important is that we feel the joy while we are doing bhakti. This joy will help us to persevere till we get to the destination of pure spiritual joy. Thus proper engagement in service while at the same time practicing sadhana bhakti is what will help us to tap our strengths and manage our weakness.
End of transcription.