Is having a desire for money and power wrong?
Everyone goes about trying to see what he can get from society. Today, thanks to the influence of the Kali Age, two kinds of diseases have grown. One is the insatiable thirst for wealth. In every city there is a mad rush for making money. Everyone is caught up in this craze for money. No doubt money is necessary, but only up to a limit to meet one’s needs. Owing to excessive desire people lose all sense of proportion. Men turn into demons in the pursuit of wealth. It may be asked whether at least they make good use of their immense wealth. No, ultimately, the money may fall in the hands of robbers or others. What you get from society, give it back to society. That is the primary value to be cherished by every one. The second malady is the thirst for power. The thirst for power and position is unquenchable. Afflicted with these two maladies man is converting the whole world into a madhouse. Do your duty sincerely. The desire for wealth and power is not wrong as such. But wealth and power should be used for right ends.
Divine Discourse 7 April 1997
How does desire lead to one’s own downfall?
Ravana taught a great lesson to the world. He exclaimed: “Oh men! Do not live as I have lived and ruin your lives.” What is the root cause of Ravana’s ruin? Unable to conquer his desires, unwilling to get rid of his impulses, he ruined his entire clan. His sons were killed. His brother and other kinsmen were killed and ultimately his country itself was reduced to ashes. Ravana confessed- “In the end I ruined myself.” This was the message Ravana gave to his countrymen in his last moments. Only by suppressing desires does a man manifest his humanness. A man who is unable to put an end to his desires, puts an end to himself.
Divine Discourse 16 April 1997
Can money satiate all desires?
Man has become a slave to money. He may forget God but will never forget money. You provide yourself with an air conditioner, a good bed, fans and other accessories with a view to having a comfortable sleep. But you do not get sleep. Why? You should have mental peace to sleep well. Your body, mind, chittha (will power) and Ahamkara (egotism) being the Inner Instruments must all be oriented towards peace as well as the external limbs and sense organs. This can be achieved only by developing Divine love, which is selfless love and which always gives and never takes, while worldly love is keen on getting and then forgetting.
Divine Discourse 17 July 1997
Why is it important to conquer greed?
Lobham hithvaa sukhee bhavathi” (Conquering greed, man realises happiness). Greed is another cause of human misery. Greed makes a man distant from every kind of happiness… material, intellectual or spiritual. Greed accounts for the failure of Dhuryodhana and Dhusshaasana to feel happy despite all their wealth and power. Hence people must banish greed from their hearts. How is this to be done? When they foster the spirit of thyaga (sacrifice), greed will vanish. With greed-filled hearts there is no room for joy. You cannot fill a tumbler full of water with milk. First empty the tumbler and then fill it with milk. Likewise, get rid of greed and fill your heart with thyaga. “A mind full of evil thoughts has no room for good thoughts.”
Divine Discourse 23 Sep 1997
What kind of desires should one have?
Have desire for mental peace, good health, and knowledge about the infinite principle. Householders should have such desires that are suitable to their stage of life. Goddess of wealth Lakshmi will then enter their house.
Divine Discourse 28 April 1997
Does fulfilling desires give permanent happiness?
All this suffering is due to your limitless desires. There is no permanent happiness in fulfilling desires. The happiness derived from desires is only temporary, like passing clouds.
Divine Discourse 16 August 1996
What does Vedanta say to overcome worldly desires?
Do you heat the rice directly on the fire? No. The fire heats the vessel first, which in turn heats the water and boils the rice. Similarly, you should keep the body in contact with the fire of wisdom, i.e. near God. Then the water of love will be heated and boil the rice of desires.Therefore, keep the body and mind near and dear to God. When you do this, all your worldly desires will disappear. This is the essence of Vedanta.
Divine Discourse 31 July 1996
Who can conquer the whole world?
A person who is a slave to desires becomes a slave of the entire world. But one who conquers desires conquers the whole world. The world becomes subservient to a person who becomes a servant of God. Therefore, never forget God.
Divine Discourse 16 August 1996
What should one do to fulfil his desires?
You may have some desires. But do not give room to greed. You must develop love to attain God. That love alone will give you everything you need. It will give you all that you require at the appropriate time and place. Do not ask, oh mind, do not ask. The more you ask, the more you will be neglected. God will certainly grant you what you deserve without your asking. Did He not grant the wish of Sabari, who never asked? Did He not redeem Jatayu, who never asked but sacrificed his life for His cause?
Divine Discourse 8 Sep 1996
When will one face the brunt of neglect from God?
The more you ask, the more you will be neglected. God will certainly grant you what you deserve without your asking. King Dasaratha asked Rama to pour water in his mouth in his last moments, but he was not fortunate to have Rama by his side when the end came. However, Rama poured water in the mouth of Jatayu, though Jatayu did not ask for this boon. He sanctified the life of Jatayu and granted him liberation.
Divine Discourse 8 Sep 1996