Duty of care and breach; Duty of care and breach
But our philosophic calm, as we contemplate the victories and defeats of our past across the interval of space or time, suffers an ignominious breach when we return to our daily life and find it not. All the old trivialities, in new dresses, engross us; old joys and sorrows, with new faces, seize us. “The tumultuous senses and organs hurry away by force the heart.” And so once more we begin to wear out our lives by petty cares, petty disputes, petty longings, petty disappointments.
Breach of the duty of care; Breach of the duty of care
How then can we break our bonds? The real answer is suggested in that law which I have been showing to you. The bonds are broken by these inevitable experiences which life after life teach the Soul the nature of the universe into which it has come. But desire is a binding force, and as long as there is desire so long must men come back to birth. The desire for good will draw it back as well as the desire for evil, the desire for religious happiness will draw it back, as well as the desire for earthly joys; the desire for the praise of men, for love, for knowledge even. A Soul may desire results of a high and noble character; still there is a desire for results, and this must bind it to places where the results are to be found. Therefore in order to get rid of we must get rid of Not cease from action - that is unnecessary, but act without desire - making every effort which is necessary, yet indifferent to the result. This is the familiar lesson given by Shri Krishna, this the essence of all truth. It is renunciation of desire, not of action, which makes the real Sannyasi, which makes the renunciator, which makes the Yogi, aYogi - not one only in the wearing of yellow garments and ashes - but a Yogi who has broken all the bonds of desire, and not simply one who is an outward renunciator. For the man of action who performs every action because it is his duty, and remains indifferent to the fruits thereof, that man in the world is the servant of God; he is one who performs every action, - not for what it brings him but because it fills up something lacking which ought to be done in the world in which he lives as an agent of God. A man who realises that the wheel of life must turn, and who takes part in the turning of the wheel, not for what the turning of the wheel may bring to him, but in order that the Divine life may circle in its course, - he plays his part in working without attachment, without desire, and turns the wheel whether it brings him pleasure or pain, whether it brings him praise or blame, fame or ignominy, Divine knowledge or ignorance - anything the wheel may bring him. He only perceives that it is his duty to cooperate with God while manifestation persists and he therefore identifies himself with the God from Whom the turning of the wheel proceeds. He is then one with Shri Krishna who declared that He had nothing to obtain in Heavens or on earth, but that if He stopped acting all would stop. And therefore the devotee who acts, not in order that he may get anything but in order that the Divine purpose may be fulfilled, he works by way of sacrifice; he offers all his actions as sacrifices to God and remains indifferent to the fruits of the sacrifice, for they lie at the feet of God and not in the heart of the devotee. Such a man makes no , for such a man has no ; such a man creates no links which bind him to earth, such a man is spiritually free, although around him actions may spring up on every side. Thus is it when a man is born into the sphere of knowledge; thus is it when a man is born into the sphere of devotion; and the life of such a man is as an altar, and burning upon that altar is the flame of devotion and of knowledge. Every action is cast into the fire and is consumed therein, rising up as the smoke of a sacrifice and leaving behind on the altar nothing save the fuel of knowledge and the fire of love.
On the side of wisdom, also, dead walls meet our gaze on each ascending line. Science, which has done so much and accomplished so many triumphs, is apparently reaching its limit in the exquisite delicacy and accuracy of its physical apparatus, and yet there come pouring into the laboratories energies too subtle for its measures to gauge, substances too rare for its balances to weigh. Science on every side is groping after new methods. In medicine it finds itself blind, the doctor unable to diagnose disease for lack of clearness of vision, unable to trace definitely the action of his drugs, merely experimenting, and ever hoping that out of experiments some certain knowledge may emerge. In physical science materialism is breaking down, with its theories of the universe proved to be inadequate, while idealism is not ready to take its place, to speak clearly and to explain intelligibly. In the greatest of idealistic systems, the Vedânta of India, as it is now taught, we find intellect devoted to useless hairsplitting instead of profound thinking, a subtle deterioration of character, and modes and habits of thought which undermine morals; men becoming careless of conduct in life and of difference between right and wrong, self-hypnotised by an unintelligent repetition of the profound truth “Thou art THAT”. In East and West alike blindness and gropings, a vague craving that knows only that it has lost its ideals and that where ideals are not there no truth can be.