Author Topic: Free Will and Destiny  (Read 8919 times)

Nagaraj

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #15 on: March 17, 2012, 08:23:26 PM »
Dear Anand,

to your observation as follows:

Quote
Further , I do wonder how this perception like dream can be self enquiry or aid to self enquiry

Do we have any answer? unfortunately no, there is always, finally, an element of faith, that can never be discarded. Even the most sharp sadhaka too experiences this at some stage, where faith takes over our intelligence. We have no way from here, but just hold the divine Lotus feet of Bhagavan.

We all are just doing our enquiries and sadhana with an element of trust and faith that what we are doing is correct and right, who can verify for us? At most, we could exchange our views with somebody or here, just like how we do :)

In one instance a devotee during his conversations with Bhagavan on the subject of Self Enquiry asked thus -

D: Even so, I do not understand. “I”, you say, is the wrong “I” now. How to eliminate this wrong “I”?

M: You need not eliminate the wrong “I” How can “I” eliminate itself? All that you need to do is to find out its origin and abide there. Your efforts can extend only thus far. Then the Beyond will take care of itself. You are helpless there. No effort can reach it.

No answer, dear friend!



Salutations to Bhagavan



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nonduel

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #16 on: March 18, 2012, 05:51:49 PM »
Dear Anand,

to your observation as follows:

Quote
Further , I do wonder how this perception like dream can be self enquiry or aid to self enquiry

Do we have any answer? unfortunately no, there is always, finally, an element of faith, that can never be discarded. Even the most sharp sadhaka too experiences this at some stage, where faith takes over our intelligence. We have no way from here, but just hold the divine Lotus feet of Bhagavan.

We all are just doing our enquiries and sadhana with an element of trust and faith that what we are doing is correct and right, who can verify for us? At most, we could exchange our views with somebody or here, just like how we do :)

In one instance a devotee during his conversations with Bhagavan on the subject of Self Enquiry asked thus -

D: Even so, I do not understand. “I”, you say, is the wrong “I” now. How to eliminate this wrong “I”?

M: You need not eliminate the wrong “I” How can “I” eliminate itself? All that you need to do is to find out its origin and abide there. Your efforts can extend only thus far. Then the Beyond will take care of itself. You are helpless there. No effort can reach it.

No answer, dear friend!



Salutations to Bhagavan

Dear Nagaraj

All other efforts are only for the mind, the ego. It is rather facinating how the mind relentlesly pressures us to "DO", because to stop and abide in the source of the "I" is its nemesis.

We have to put our bagages down once on the train.
Oh Arunachala, blazing fire of Jnana, in my heart I pray and think of Thee from afar, root out the ego, merging me in the Self.

Nagaraj

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #17 on: March 18, 2012, 06:02:21 PM »
Dear Nondual,

Its funny, because, even if we want to Not Do anything, that becomes another effort  :D

Neither DO nor NOT DO

the fine line in between, the fine line in between!

(but these are only words!)

Salutations to Bhagavan
« Last Edit: March 18, 2012, 06:05:42 PM by Nagaraj »



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nonduel

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #18 on: March 18, 2012, 06:26:21 PM »
Dear Nondual,

Its funny, because, even if we want to Not Do anything, that becomes another effort  :D

Neither DO nor NOT DO

the fine line in between, the fine line in between!

(but these are only words!)

Salutations to Bhagavan

This fine line exist as long as we believe that we are the doer. The doing is happening without us (Self).

Oh Arunachala, blazing fire of Jnana, in my heart I pray and think of Thee from afar, root out the ego, merging me in the Self.

Subramanian.R

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #19 on: March 18, 2012, 06:31:59 PM »
Dear Nagaraj, nonduel,

There are six conversations of devotees with Sri Bhagavan in Talks where Sri Bhagavan had explained all the aspects of
free will and destiny.  His words in these conversations are the sum and substance about free will and destiny.

Talks Nos.   28, 193, 209, 210, 346, and 426.

Arunachala Siva.

Nagaraj

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #20 on: March 18, 2012, 10:32:14 PM »
Dear Subramanian Sir,

Thanks for specifying those talks Nos. it is very helpful for quick reference.  :)

Dear nondual,

what you have observed is correct. But my personal observation is that just the knowing is not enough.

We may analyse and be able to solve these contemplations like a math problem. We may even arive at the solution. But it still is not the end! Even the observation which you are so rightfully arrived at as "This fine line exist as long as we believe that we are the doer. The doing is happening without us (Self)." leaves a pandoras box open.

i am forced to raise some very fundamental questions: What is belief or believing? How do we ever know whether we believe or not, belief itself is something very vague. we believe because of something, belief always corresponds with some proof, or evidence, the proof could be just anything, like, it is my tradition, so I believe, my forefathers have believed, so I believe, I trust my intelligence, intellect, so I believe, this is only belief. it is not by itself, hence it is a failure in filling the vacuum!

i contemplate and question, how can we trust 'belief' how does it help if one believes or not, for it corresponds with some proof, and, it is not by itself.

If we have to believe on something inorder to gain something, then the Self is still deluded.

Even the sayings about doerships pertain to the troubled mind alone, and it certainly has nothing to do with the Self and it does not fill the gap, vacuum, that is. All logic, rational, jnana or bhakthi is unable to fill this gap or vacuum!

I cannot avoid saying this, but there is something beyond all these. There are many Sadhakas who arrive so close to truth just like how we arrive to some exalted conclusions here, but, it is my personal observation that that is not the end.

There have been only handful of realised jnanis or souls, barely countable in our fingers over centuries.

I am sure, many many devotees and sadhakas have arrived at several conclusions that we arrive here so close. but still that is not so.

There is some gap, vacuum, that does not get filled by anything, even these exalted analyses and contemplations or even Bhakthi too, doesn't fill it. Even the highest logical and rational conclusions is not filling it, even any kind of Bhakthi act, also is not filling this gap, excepting to giving some temporary solace, to eventually give up facing the unlimitedness or the expanse of that gap or vacuum or what ever we may wish to infer.

Salutations to Bhagavan
« Last Edit: March 18, 2012, 10:54:03 PM by Nagaraj »



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Hari

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #21 on: March 19, 2012, 02:33:14 PM »
Quote
Dear Achalam,

Freewill, Destiny is ignorance. Self does not have either destiny or freewill.

All the talks about freewill and destiny is just dream.

You neither have freewill nor destiny.

Contemplate, where then, do you belong? what could be beyond freewill and destiny?

Salutations to Bhagavan

I agree, Sri Nagaraj. But for us as people with "body consciousness" this topic matters and is real one. And I'll say you why. If we accept that everything is predestined, including our liberation and spirituality then our spiritual effort is meaningless because if I am destined to get moksha I'll get it even if I stay all day in front of my TV. Then God is unjust because He has chosen one to be liberated and other to suffer and die. "But he who has been liberated has deserved it because of the good deeds in his previous life" but I ask "How could you say that the good deeds are his provided that he has no will?". I think we must be careful when we discuss this matter because we may turn some people to become spiritual sluggards, victims of religious fanaticism and many other things. I don't think that extremism is right answer to any problem in life including the topic "free will and destiny". I always prefer the middle way. Lack of free will compromise and bhakti, and jnana, even Vedanta. Without free will there is no responsibility, duty, cultivation of virtues and so on. People could say "I like to eat as much as I want, to have sex with as many as I can, to drink. Then this is my destiny. If I have been destined to be moderate, celibate and abstainer, God would be created me like that".

Nagaraj

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #22 on: March 19, 2012, 03:29:32 PM »
Dear Ramana,

If there is a basket containig various fruits and sweets and other items, and if we are given the basket, we take all those that we like and leave away all those items that we don't like. In the same way. Please feel free to accept any thing that is conducive to your understanding and your beliefs. Moderation is a very personal thing. Moderation is not common for all.

For one, doing 1008 japa could be a moderation, but for another, just doing 32 japa could be moderation.

 आ नो भद्राः क्रतवो यन्तु विश्वतः / A no bhadraaH kratavo yantu vishvataH (Let good (thoughts) come from everywhere, from all the world)

This much is a minimum requirement of a true Sadhaka.

As for that matter, what i have said is not something new, or some thing, that i have said from thin air, Bhagavan has also said so, in Ulladu Narpadu, Verse 19, as also quoted by Subramanian Sir:

All discussions about free will and destiny are only for those who lack discrimination. For one who experiences the source of
both destiny and free will, will under the One Principle and after realizing That, they will become silent and will no longer bother
about destiny and free will.


For us Vichari's enquirers, may feel very exhaustive to see Bhakthi Maarga Sadhakas, who day night sing kirthans and do nama japa, that may look for us some extreme exertions, but for them, it is a very personal thing. We can never know.

If a Sadhaka is to goes astray, if he is only bound to go astray or bound to become a  spiritual sluggards, or become victims of religious fanaticism, he goes so, because of sole reason of his ego, and, i may be only an instrument for such a persons to face adverse situation, which also is only a divine play, so be it, if that is what is my prarabdha karma, if that is what God is making me enact! No matter where one goes, one comes back to the same position once again. But why take burden of somebody else, when we find it difficult to manage our own burden. God Almighty is there, he knows who has to face what, i am sure, my expressions can never make somebody extremist, as not even an atom moves without His will, who am I, such a puny?  :) here. He knows, he takes care.

Hence anybody going astray or becoming spiritual sluggard is only our interpretation, but we never know what internal churning is going on within them!

If person x experiences pain because of some act of person y, then person y is really to not be blamed, for he is only an instrument for the person x to face his Karma. (thoughts from Bhagavad Gita)

Infact, in your expression, in your query, you express fears of such a 'state' without any freewill and destiny. It is certainly a terrible thing to face initially. But when we truly realise what freewill really is and destiny really is, we have no option there. Infact, it is an exalted state of a devotee, who has come to a conclusion of,

Not I, but thou,
Not I, but only thou!

where is place for 'I'? where I raises, everything raises along with it.

Moreover, we need not worry about the masses, let Guru deal with the masses, Bhagavan is there for masses, he will take care, we need not worry if somebody may become spiritual sluggard, or religious fanatic. But yes, if such a person comes and humbly requests you to show him true light, then we can share with such a one, what ever we know.

these are my humble thoughts.

Salutations to Bhagavan
« Last Edit: March 19, 2012, 04:09:11 PM by Nagaraj »



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Subramanian.R

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #23 on: March 19, 2012, 04:07:35 PM »
Dear Nagaraj,

Yes. Sri Bhagavan said Vidhi madhi moolam, vivekam illarke.... This is something like egg and hen story. Which comes first?
A egg and the hen that came from that egg, cannot remain simultaneously.  The worm inside the cocoon and the fly that came
out cannot remain simultaneously.  Gaudapada analyzes this beautifully in his Karika. Where is the egg? Where is the hen?
Smash the egg on the ground. Catch the hen by its neck and kill it. Then kneel down and pray to the Mother, Earth. She
is Prakrti. She knows the Truth. Do not quarrel which came first.

Arunachala Siva.   

Hari

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #24 on: March 19, 2012, 05:06:26 PM »
I agree with both of you. But my question was not theoretical. It was practical. I don't want to write dissertation about free will or destiny. Mo point was how wrong interpetation of destiny and free will can do harm to some people. I know people who have problems and say "It is my destiny" and don't do nothing to resolve them. I know too people who too have problems and try to resolve them. Sometime they succeed, sometimes not but they have tried at least. The extreme determinism kills spiritual life of many people making them more egoistic and samsaric. Can any of you prove the free will doesn't exist and the destiny is everything? Or that destiny has no power and we can change it whenever we want? I doubt it. Actually there is no destiny or free will. There is only God's Will. But this can be realized when one matures spiritually. So as Sri Subramanian has said, this topic is meaningless. And if anyone asks my opinion "Is there free will or destiny" I would answer "Both of them are always available for the ignorant one. But once the person discard them and surrender to the Lord, then you will realize that both of them are just a play of the Lord. So don't try to change anything or to know your destiny. Just surrender to the Lord."

Christians that have killed so many people in the Name of Jesus have tought that they do God's Will. Can we say that these actions are according to Jesus' Will? Are bad deeds God's Will as good deeds? Does God provoke killers to kill or thieves to steal? If we accept that then why should I not steal something if I want? Do you understand why I participate in this conversation? It's not about what I think. Nobody cares and it doesn't matter. It's about to protect some people reading this from wrong understanding of the concepts about destiny and free will. It's not about belief or theories but about practicality. This topic is as whole about practicality because in relative reality there is only God's Will and in absolute reality there is only Brahman. Everything in spirituality (including concept of free will and destiny) has one purpose - to realize that spirituality and everything doesn't exist as something different from the Supreme Reality.

Some question which some sadhakas may be are interested in:

1. Are Self-inquiry and Surrender dependent on me? Or God's Grace?
2. Should I try to cure myself from disease or to stay and see what will happen. If I am predestined to live I will live?
3. Should I help others? If I don't want it's probably my destiny. Ishvara should help them. I will do what I intend - to go to the disco, to go out with friend, to drink and so on.
4. If I am a serial killer or a prostitute, should I change my job or can I continue it doing Self-inquiry?

I would be happy if you answer them. They are not provoking. They are just a part of life.

nonduel

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #25 on: March 19, 2012, 05:12:15 PM »
They last few posts are very interesting and raise very important questions. We could go on discussing all the points that have been raised: beliefs, doing tapas, free will and destiny...

If we accept that everything is predestined, including our liberation and spirituality then our spiritual effort is meaningless because if I am destined to get moksha I'll get it even if I stay all day in front of my TV

This is something like egg and hen story. Which comes first?

But my personal observation is that just the knowing is not enough.

What did Baghavan teach? What did all the Saints teach?  Tat Svam Asi!
The Absolute Reality is nondual! And YOU are THAT!   Call it with the name that you want, Brahman, Self, Absolute...

Ramana always said the same thing, to go at the source and THE MIND WILL SINK IN THE HEART AND DIE!

Now if we read all the above post when the mind has died at the heart, WHICH QUESTION REMAIN?

Many scriptures (Ribhu Gita etc) mention bhavana conviction, there has to be a time when the sadhaka accepts without doubt what Ramana taught and stops questionning. Because ALL THIS SPROUT FROM THE MIND. All knowledge is for the mind, all sadhana is for the mind and it is only a bundle of thoughts.

The problem exist only because we cannot let go of the belief that we are the body. The I-Thought.

All the question of surrender is to let go of all questions, of all doubts and ABIDE IN THE SELF. DOUBT THE DOUBTER. YOU ARE NOT THE MIND. this is the TRUTH taught by Baghavan.

Oh Arunachala, blazing fire of Jnana, in my heart I pray and think of Thee from afar, root out the ego, merging me in the Self.

nonduel

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #26 on: March 19, 2012, 05:22:48 PM »
Quote:
Some question which some sadhakas may be are interested in:

1. Are Self-inquiry and Surrender dependent on me? Or God's Grace?
2. Should I try to cure myself from disease or to stay and see what will happen. If I am predestined to live I will live?
3. Should I help others? If I don't want it's probably my destiny. Ishvara should help them. I will do what I intend - to go to the disco, to go out with friend, to drink and so on.
4. If I am a serial killer or a prostitute, should I change my job or can I continue it doing Self-inquiry?

I would be happy if you answer them. They are not provoking. They are just a part of life.


1- You are not the "me" but the Self. Like you are not the one in the dream but the dreamer.
2- If you are not this Ramana1359, but you only believe that you are what is there to cure, what does predestiny has to do with the Self?
3- For Ramana1359, read the posts on destiny and free will.
4- Self-enquiry will lead you at the source and you will Realise that all this was a dream.

Nothing is a provocation and you can question anything.

Leave everything at the feet of Baghavan, put the luggage on the floor once on the train to Realisation. Abide in the self and let Bliss fill you, Baghavan "resides" there, nowhere else!
Oh Arunachala, blazing fire of Jnana, in my heart I pray and think of Thee from afar, root out the ego, merging me in the Self.

Nagaraj

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #27 on: March 19, 2012, 05:34:25 PM »
Some question which some sadhakas may be are interested in:

1. Are Self-inquiry and Surrender dependent on me? Or God's Grace?
2. Should I try to cure myself from disease or to stay and see what will happen. If I am predestined to live I will live?
3. Should I help others? If I don't want it's probably my destiny. Ishvara should help them. I will do what I intend - to go to the disco, to go out with friend, to drink and so on.
4. If I am a serial killer or a prostitute, should I change my job or can I continue it doing Self-inquiry?

I would be happy if you answer them. They are not provoking. They are just a part of life.

Dear Ramana,

I would express myself to your questions as below:

To all your questions above, Bhagavan has always given least importance to questions, but only the questioner alone is of paramount importance. The only question He would entertain is who is the questioner, or, who am I?

To all other questions, there may be many answers, yes or no or may be and so on, answers to these questions that you have raised are more given so based on the society and culture that is prevalant, one would do what is best and what is seen as good by the Elders.

If one seriously discerns this, his station of life will not be a problem. When the truth hits you, you will automatically stop going to disco, or one would stop prostitution, etc..

But on a practical level as you want to observe, i have mentioned my views below in blue:

  • Are Self-inquiry and Surrender dependent on me? Or God's Grace? avan arulaale avan thaal vanangi - we can worship only on his grace alone. Without His grace, even the thought about God will not sprout
  • Should I try to cure myself from disease or to stay and see what will happen. If I am predestined to live I will live? depends on your conviction, one with doubts takes medicine, one with complete faith leaves it to God
  • Should I help others? If I don't want it's probably my destiny. Ishvara should help them. I will do what I intend - to go to the disco, to go out with friend, to drink and so on. Help if you feel you want to help, go to disco if you feel you want, worship if you feel you want to, the thing is that, when you truly See the truth, all your Doshas or faults drop on their own accord without your effort on the merit of your jnana.
  • If I am a serial killer or a prostitute, should I change my job or can I continue it doing Self-inquiry? the moment you began to question yourself, you will be shown light, you don't have to worry about changing your job or continue, the taapam or the pain of your guilt will itself purify you, take you away from your guilt.

Salutations to Bhagavan
« Last Edit: March 19, 2012, 05:36:45 PM by Nagaraj »



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Hari

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #28 on: March 19, 2012, 06:39:07 PM »
Quote
To all your questions above, Bhagavan has always given least importance to questions, but only the questioner alone is of paramount importance.

Thank you for reminding me that.

Hari

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Re: Free Will and Destiny
« Reply #29 on: March 19, 2012, 07:01:17 PM »
Quote
Leave everything at the feet of Baghavan, put the luggage on the floor once on the train to Realisation. Abide in the self and let Bliss fill you, Baghavan "resides" there, nowhere else!

Yes. But how? If I have no will how can I leave everything or to put the luggage on the floor? Now do you understand why the matter of free will and destiny matters to me? Because the answer of the question does I have will or not give me the starting point and direction how to follow Bhagavan's teachings. If I accept "everything is predestined" then how can I have faith in any teaching? Everything is predestined and thus all ends. If my destiny say "OK, you will be liberated", I will be liberated. If it says no, I will not be and following Bhagavan or any other is meaningless. The question is does my intention to be liberated matter? Or no matter what if I am not destined I am doomed. That's the most important question from relative point of view for all followers.