Once a young man had a bizarre shopping list — 20 cockroaches, 15 spiders, three lizards and half a kg of dust! When asked, he quipped: “The landlady has asked me to leave the flat in exactly the same condition as when I moved in!” So how do we live our life? Do we live it well and leave the world a better place? Do we mess up our lives and make it terrible for others? Are we problem creators, problem solvers or ourselves problems? We should live in such a way that we make life simple, easy and happy for ourselves and for others. Therefore, we need to learn how to do so. Can life itself not teach us lessons? True, life is the best teacher. However, “a wise man learns from other people’s mistakes, a fool from his own” and a bigger fool never! Instead of learning by “trial and error” we should learn from the wisdom of others and test those lessons through our own experiences.
Sometimes, we may learn wrong lessons. A teacher was demonstrating the ill-effects of alcohol to her class. She put some worms in a beaker of alcohol. The worms struggled and died. “What lesson did you learn from this?” asked the teacher. “Whenever we get worms in the stomach,” concluded a student, “we should drink alcohol!” The lessons from the wise help us to validate our knowledge. Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda once said: “Knowing is not doing. Doing is doing.” Knowing how to live well is not enough. We must put the lessons into practice, and then alone does life become easy and happy. The Bhagavad Gita enjoins us to learn lessons from the scriptures and then perform our actions.
Happiness is a choice. You can choose to be happy. There's going to be stress in life,
but it's your choice whether you let it affect you or not.
Deccan Chronicle, Nov 03, 2017
by Swami Tejomayananda, head of Chinmaya Mission