The question, such as, “How to conquer passions?”, or “How to deal with sentiments and emotions?” was often raised before Sri Bhagwan by afflicted devotees. Sri Bhagwan’s standard reply to such question is well known, and almost always followed the same pattern:
If passions and emotions are something external to us we can take arms and ammunition and conquer them.” We have to understand that passions, emotions, sentiments, desires et al, are mere thoughts, all connected with the ‘I’-thought which along with the associated thoughts come from within us. If we look into the Source whence they issue forth they all vanish, being unreal. It is the world and the objects in it which arouse our passions and emotions and desires. But we are aware that world and the objects therein are created by our mind. They do not exist during our sleep. Therefore, Sri Bhagwan says that the right way is to find out the root of all passions, root of all desires, root of all emotions, and get rid of them for once and all. If, instead, we seek to check or control the passions, emotions, desires, etc. they may remain suppressed for the time being, only to reappear again, given the opportunity. Satisfying the passions and desires and nurturing the sentiments and emotions, wouldn’t work either. So, esoterically, at least for those who are initiated and are in the net of Sri Bhagwan’s Grace, the right way is to find the root of all these mischiefs and thus overcome them. For all these are thoughts including the central ‘I’-thought are unreal, having no existence. They are the ephemeral contents of the Consciousness. We are the Consciousness Itself.
Dear devotees, even the V. 2-59 of the Mankind’s Scripture, Srimad Bhagavad Gita teaches :
“From the abstinence, sense objects of the man (Jiva) fall away, but not the taste for them. When the Supreme Truth is realised, even the taste departs.”
Therefore, it follows that abstinence and practice of scrupulously keeping away from the objects of the sense enjoyment is not the ultimate remedy for their thirst. For, instinctive urges and subtle hankerings continue to draw us away, if some time or the other they avail the opportunity. In the cited Gita Verse, it is clearly stated that only the spiritual realisation and the experience that one is the Self and not the body, can alone uproot them completely.
Dear devotees, Sri Viswanatha Swami was in his teens when he came to stay permanently at the ‘’Feet of Sri Bhagwan’. Naturally, in his youthful mind, the body related thoughts would arise. So, he sought guidance from Sri Bhagwan. It is in this context that Sri Bhagwan revealed this famous Words of Wisdom”
“It is only by awakening a power mightier than the senses and the mind that they can be subdued. If you awaken and sustain the growth of the power within you, everything else will be conquered.”
This is, in my view, the most appropriate interpretation of the cited Verse 2-59 of the Gita. This is the way to conquer the passions, emotion, etc. BY AWAKENING WITHIN US THE POWER MIGHTIER THAN THE SENSES, BY ENQUIRY, AND SUSTAINING THAT POWER, WITHIN US, CAN ALONE ENNABLE US TO GET RID OF THESE DESTRUCTIVE THOUGHTS AND FEELINGS.