As no one can know what his destiny
is going to be, self-effort is a must.
destiny (or Prarabdha) is applicable to all physical events and happenings. An actor in a drama, while acting according to the prescribed Drama Script (equivalent to destiny), can no doubt be thinking of his wife and children and this cannot be restricted.
Similarly, a common man, though acting as per destiny, is fully entitled to keep his mind on God and / or reflect on spiritual truths and the latter is not capable of being restrained by any destiny. This exercising of mind by meditation, enquiry, etc., and study of scriptures is what is called personal
The actions of men are propelled by desires and the desire is not different from the mind itself. It is the mind which has become the individual soul.
The mind, the heart, desires, actions and destiny are all names of the individual soul only.
Desires are of two kinds - good and evil. The mind has to be gently turned by our own efforts from evil tendencies to the right course by getting mastery over bad desires by constant practice.
One should thus reach a clear understanding of the ultimate goal which is bereft of all sorrows by following the virtuous path, then forsake even that
enquiry and remain silent.
Hence by self-effort, control your senses from running towards worldly objects, so that the mind could be concentrated. It is necessary for a personto subjugate and control his desires and thus subdue the mind. When one conquers his mind, peace ,and contentment results.
He! who keeps his senses and desires under subjection, deals with all beings equally and impartially and neither longs for any object nor renounces anything
(i.e. remains indifferent) is a man full of peace.
He whose mind is calm at the time of death
or during festivities or while fighting is a peaceful person.
The one who neither feels pleasure or
unhappiness on contact with anything good or bad (pleasant or unpleasant to the senses) is a man of quiescence.
Control of mind, enquiry (vichara),
contentment and meeting with saints are the four guards keeping a watch at the gate of Liberation.
It is by association with good people that
discriminative faculty (viveka) is generated. With a mind sharpened and purified by a study of scriptures, one should resort to Self-enquiry which will take one to the supreme goal.
Self-Enquiry means a reasoning and analysis of 'Who am I?' and 'Whence has this phenomenal world arisen?'
One who has renounced all desires for things not possessed by him, having a neutral attitude towards things in his possession and never having the reactions of pleasure and pain is known as a
man of contentment.
It is the company of holy and virtuous men
which generates the faculty of discrimination and serves as a torch light to light up and lead one to the right path.
Thus contentment, company of holy saints, Self-enquiry and control of mind are the means for breaking away from the bondage
of Samsara (phenomenal world). Even if one of these virtues is cultivated strongly, the bad consequences of the uncontrolled mind can be eliminated.
- Sage Vasistha.