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Back to Godhead

Does being successful really matters!

One Indian Vedic verse changes completely the perspective of the humans who are busy chasing success, money, fame & popularity.

Now first we must know that this verse is being said by the Supreme Personality of Godhead himself. In his incarnation as Kapiladeva (from shrimad bhagavatam). Let understand what the Lord has said in this verse.

Income or earning

Nowadays there are heroes of the tech world, who have earned massive wealth and fame.

These are the personalities who have attracted many individuals because of their wealth, fame & popularity. No doubt they are self-made billionaires and that too in a short time span. Many of you might know Elon Musk works 80-100 hours a week, which means 15–16 hours daily. Bill gates didn’t take a single day's leave for the first three years of Microsoft. Of course, such things feel like inspiration and inspire us to do the same to achieve success. Even great motivational speakers too constantly hammer in your mind that nothing is impossible, work hard and harder till you reach your goal. Now, what’s that goal, is to achieve wealth, fame & popularity.

Now what lord kapiladeva has instructed us…

“Devotee should be satisfied with what he earns without great difficulty.”

A person who has no money is found to work very hard to gain wealth. But Lord Kapiladeva has instructed that we should not endeavor hard for things that may come automatically, without extraneous labor. Now obviously here it doesn’t mean we should not work. The exact Sanskrit word used is yadrcchjaya, which means that every living entity has a predestined happiness and distress in his present life; that is called the law of karma.

If anybody who works for 80–100 hours a week could become Elon Musk if that's so then many would have become so far. The reality is everyone is earning and acquiring according to his predestined karma. According to Bhagavatam, we face dangers or miserable conditions without endeavoring them, and similarly, we may have prosperous conditions without endeavoring for them. We are advised to let these things come as predestined. We should use our valuable time advancing in devotional service.

Be aspirational, but by working basic hours (smart work). And be patient, let the success come it's way gradually. And spend rest time in devotional activities.

Diet & eating habits

Today, everybody is health-conscious. But they also want the taste of the burger and pizza. This means they want to look in a good shape by enjoying all junk food. Satisfying or controlling the tongue is an extremely difficult job.

But here Lord used the word mita-bhun. This means that one should eat only as much as necessary to maintain body and soul together.

In Bhagavatam further, it is instructed that a person should eat half of his hunger and rest half he should fill his stomach with water. So that there’s enough air to easily perform the digestion process. This Indian Vedic process will always keep your body fit and slim.

House to live

Whenever we think or dream about our own house, mostly we dream about a lavish or luxurious house. With all comforts and beauty. And for such a materialistic dream, a person works day and night just to live in such a home.

Lord recommends that a devotee should select a residence where everyone is interested in devotional service. Basically near temple or church or where you could get an association of pure devotees. To live in a secluded place (vivikta-saranah).

To live a pure devotional and peaceful life. The first thing you need is pure devotional association and environment. And such association cannot be obtained near a sea beach or on an island or on high skyscrapers. Nor even surrounded by many materialistic peoples.

Personal nature & qualities

In the same verse, Lord instructed a person should cultivate these qualities. Friendly, peaceful, compassionate, and self-realized.

Friendly (maitra) — A devotee should be friendly with everyone but his pure association should be with devotees only.

This means you should build relations with your colleagues at your working place. But that must only be for job purposes and should not spend time other than that. Because sooner or later you will fall down from your spiritual advancement by associating with materialistic peoples.

Peaceful — By association of pure devotees and constant reading of Vedic scriptures the devotee’s mind gets settled and he finds peace in life.

Compassionate — A devotee should have compassion towards all living beings in the world. Even towards atheists, and should try to bring them towards the god.

Self-realized — Self-realized is a position where you come to know that you are not a body but a spirit soul. You are a part and parcel of the supreme. And you’ve come to this world with this human body after many births and hence this birth is very precious for liberation. And liberation can only be achieved by worshiping god.

So in just one verse lord has instructed the original way of living life. So for more in spiritual advancement, you must read shrimad bhagavatam.



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A learner and servant's servant of Lord Krishna.