How can one be established in wisdom?

How can one be established in wisdom?


What are the characteristics of a person established in wisdom? This was Arjuna’s question to Sri Krishna.

At the heart of the question lies an effort to understand the state of equanimity. Translated in simple terms, how is the process of self-transformation brought about?

Sri Krishna responds to the question by saying the person established in wisdom has successfully overcome desire.

Such a person has been able to free his mind from desire, has no attraction towards pleasures, has overcome fear and anger, has freed himself from any kind of attachment and who on attaining any outcome, irrespective of whether it is positive or negative, neither greets it nor despises it can be said to be established in wisdom.

Such an aspirant realises that the external world but a projection of the Supreme Self and upon that realisation loses its appeal to him.

The Lord explains to Arjuna that the root of all sorrow is desire.

When desires are not fulfilled, they lead to anger and this leads to other undesirable consequences, the most notable of which are delusion and an unstable mind.

The aspirant who is able to successfully withdraw his senses and direct them to realising the divinity contained within sets himself on a higher internal trajectory.

This opens up the capacity to experience life in its higher dimensions by elevating consciousness, embedding love, compassion and solidarity and regarding others as oneself.

According to Swami Rama, there is a mental law that states that if a person gives up, he will receive something new in its place:

“That principle sustains life. In order to survive and receive, we have to give up. Give up first; only then will you receive. This law continues to help one until the last breath of life. One must learn to have courage and give up what he has in order to receive that which is glorious and beautiful and limitless and infinite.”

This is a critical principle whose importance needs to be understood.

We need to give in order to receive.

First give before you receive. It is giving the enables receiving.

Controlling sensory experiences and giving them is critical in successfully completing the journey to inner awakening.

For this to happen, moving away from sensory gratification to self-discipline is a necessary prerequisite.

Resolute spiritual practice produces non-attachment.

Such non-attachment leads to equipoise.
That is the difference between pleasure and happiness.

As Swami Rama points out, pleasure is derived from indulging the senses; it is sensory experience.

On the other hand, happiness is an outcome of a state of tranquility.

Mastery over the senses results in freedom but its absence results in being trapped by the snares of births and deaths.