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Total freedom from the past || Acharya Prashant, on Sri Ramakrishna (2017)
Author Acharya Prashant
Acharya Prashant
3 min
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Questioner: Acharya Ji, please explain what Shri Ramakrishna meant by:

“Once a Marwari gentleman, approached Ramakrishna and said, “How is it, Sir, that I do not see God, although I have renounced everything?”

The Master: Well, haven’t you seen leather jars for keeping oil? If one of them is emptied of its contents, still it retains something of the oil as well as its smell. In the same way, there is still some worldliness left in you and its odor persists.”

Acharya Prashant: This is the momentum of the past. Just because you go on a diet today, you quit over-eating today, would you today, lose all the excess fat that you have? Would today, your weight drop to normal? All your karma of the past stays with you in the form of accumulated karma-fal (Fruit), which is calories and fat, and weight. Is it clear now?

Today you might say you won’t take one morsel, one calorie extra. But what about all those years, when you were piling up stuffs after stuff? That stays with you. That has to run its course. That will stay with you till it is burnt down.

So, do not complain. Do not say that, "Why am I to bear the load of all the excess weight accumulation, mental baggage, when I am living a pious life?" Your life is pious today. But mind is a continuity, mind is a flow. You might clean up the Ganges at Patna. You might ensure that no ways it be let into river, there. But, what about all the waste, that the flow is carrying with it from behind? Are you getting it?

The mind is like a river. Time is a river. And this can be a serious disappointment. This can be a great trick of Maya . It can even make you deviate from the pious – the path of letting go that you might have taken. You will continue with your austerities. You will continue with the life that does not add to the momentum or add to your baggage, and yet, you would be let down, when you would see that the things have not changed greatly. It has been ten days, since you last bit into that burger and still, your waistline is almost the same. Maybe you have lost half an inch.

Ten days of abstinence; ten days of bland food, and all you lose is half an inch. That can be a serious incentive to give up on dieting and put your teeth back into the burger. What is the point in leading a sanctimonious life, when I still look the same as used to look two weeks back?

If I have to look like this, I rather have all the pleasures and look like this.

Don’t be misled!

That fat wasn’t accumulated in one day. And the fat will not be lost in one day. You took years to become what you have become. You will take at least months to unbecome what you have become.

Do not expect instant miracles. Tapasya (Austerity) is needed and it takes time. Are you getting it?

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