Heaven and Hell are creations of our mind itself. A happy and satisfied state of mind leads us to experience heaven and a disturbed, confused and lost mind causes experience of hell. We move through heaven and hell during various phases of our life. When everything is going our way, we feel happy and in heaven. When the results turn out to be bad, we are in hell. This is a situation of zero control over ourselves. A purposeful being has great control over herself/ himself.
(Image Credit: Craig Sunter)
Routes to Psychological Hell
There are three routes to Hell – Kama (Desire), Krodha (Anger) and Lobha (Greed) as per the Bhagavad Gita. There are material things and states of mind that we want for ourselves. This want or desire is Kama. At times, we just want to own a physical thing or be in a particular place. We may want a position in society or approval from particular people. All of this is desire. In fact, it may not be possible to live without desire. There needs to be some desires – they could be long term and part of our life purpose. They could be aspirational. But, short term desires that come one after the other is dangerous.
When a desire is not fulfilled, it results in Anger. Even something so inconsequential as our favourite team losing a game causes anger to rise within us. Movie scenes and television dramas cause anger to rise in us. Whenever something we expected to come our way changes its route, we become angry. Many of us are so tuned to anger that small incidents such as slow internet connection or a traffic jam can cause us to fume with fury. Anger causes a lot of disturbance in our mental and psychological systems. An angry state of mind is an experience of hell itself.
Say we taste success repeatedly. Some children win prizes at school one after the other in such frequency that they start expecting to win all the time. This results in Greed. When we lose, that again leads us to Anger. Sometimes business turns out to be good and we start reaping profits. But, some profits that comes our way lures us to more and more money that we lose patience and fall into an impatient greed of a kind. This greed also results in us losing our peace.
Desire which is satisfied by fate or effort and the desire that is not satisfied causes us to be unhappy. Today, the state of happiness within us is all based on conditions. If I win, I will be happy. If my party or team wins, I will be happy. If my business does well, I will be happy. If my marks turn out be great, I will be happy. True happiness does not require a cause. Look a dog around you. He is happy just to be alive and have the wind flow across his face. A child is happy just like that. When we start to experience happiness without conditions, that is when Heaven comes down to Earth. It is not that difficult at all. Maybe it is too easy for our liking and conditioning.
Balance of Mind
A great personality requires a good presence of mind. A mind that is not disturbed by unwanted thoughts and mental interruptions from inside ourselves results in greatness.
Today, most of us believe that a mind that is free from thoughts do not exist. A constant assault of thoughts is considered normal. Our minds resemble a News TV channel with constant chatter in the background. This is in fact a sick state of mind. A clear noiseless, silent state of mind with no word and no thought is the Zen state. This is the mind which starts and maintains great results.
Peace of mind results from a healthy mind and a powerful intellect. A person who is driven constantly through desires, anger and greed can never expect such a space within. In this context, it is good to discuss the concept of “Shreyas” which roughly translates to Prosperity, Welfare and Good Fortune. Shreyas is the sum total of those qualities that lead to individual wellness and gradually into Societal Blissfulness. A group of peaceful and powerful individuals can turn a society around to peace, happiness and prosperity.
The media keeps society in a state of constant worry and doubt. We often hear about the problems in the Government, issues with the economy, cases with politicians and scandals of the rich on media so regularly. A mind that is constantly tuned to this vibration cannot reach a Shreyas state of mind. It may be necessary to spend time in solitude listening to ourselves in meditation to attain such a space within. Self control, Learning and development of the right vision towards life will result in good fortune and fulfilling our life purpose.
How far have you come in your pursuit of a peaceful mind?