The Ascent to Moksha
by Swami Krishnananda

Discourse 7: The Essence and Importance of Morality in Sadhana

Yesterday we had an occasion to have a little insight into the nature of what goes by the name of self-control, and it remains for us to know what methods we could employ in effecting this control over ourselves for the reason mentioned. It gives us a possession of ourselves, with which no other wealth or riches could be compared, and instils in us pristine power, health, and happiness.

To effect self-control, various sadhanas have to be practised, and these are the stages of yoga. It is usually the belief that the practice of yoga is a scientific technique, and people have the habit of adopting a purely scientific attitude to this process of investigation, forgetting the fact that yoga is not merely science, but also morality. In working through a telescope or an observatory or a microscope, morality is not necessary. Not so is the case here. The reason is that we are dealing with human nature, and not with an instrument or something purely external to us or to our nature.

That which foils all our attempts at a vital success in our life is a failure on our part to exercise a control over the ethical nature or the moral behaviour. This is generally taken to mean a kind of social pattern or etiquette. We have been told that to do good or to be good would be to conduct ourselves in certain ways in respect of human society and the public in general. We have, therefore, unwittingly identified ourselves with social patterns, and also identified morality with a social need.

Suffice it to say that morality is of two kinds. It is external as well as internal. We are familiar only with the external pattern of morality. We do not know that there is another, more interior part of it, which is the vital morality. That we do good on account of fear of social restrictions is one thing, but there is also a command from within. It is called the categorical imperative, a ‘must’ or an ‘ought’ which comes from within ourselves as a mandate, not from any outward authority but from the nature of our own being. We do certain things or conduct ourselves in a certain manner not because we are compelled from outside but are impelled from within. This is the inner morality of yoga as different from the outer morality of society.

The principles of conduct that we lay down for our behaviour in society are good enough and very necessary indeed, but this is not yoga morality. We may be a very good person in society but a very bad person inside ourselves, and this will spoil all our attempts in internally conducting ourselves towards Truth-realisation. Our external conduct in respect of human relationship is not going to be an aid in the practice of yoga. What we call etiquette in human society is limited to those needs of our personality in respect of society, but that has nothing to do with our more internal needs concerning the spirit.

The unethical conduct which people often manifest in external life is only a symbol or an insignia of what they are made of inwardly. It is impossible to cover or hide what is hidden in our own personality for a long time. Our nature will manifest itself in spite of ourselves. While social laws and restrictions are framed to regulate human conduct in external life, it goes without saying that this external behaviour of the human being is a necessary expression of the internal structure of the moral nature.

We have what we may call a moral nature within us. It is not moral activity. It is different from the activity that we manifest outside. There is a characteristic within us – rather, as we say, character, as different from conduct. Sometimes we ask for a character certificate. They say the character and conduct of the person is good, which means while we use two terms, ‘character’ and ‘conduct’, we also imply that the two are slightly distinct in their connotation. While conduct is external behaviour, character is internal nature. The internal nature determines external behaviour. So while the conduct may be good and commendable, the character also has to be good because that is internal nature, and if it is contrary to the outward behaviour, it will naturally manifest itself one day and put an end to the present outward behaviour. Therefore, we have to be cautious to investigate into our inner nature because it is this nature that goes to pave the way to higher practice in yoga.

Any kind of unethical behaviour is an indication of an unethical nature inside us. And what is unethical? It is also unspiritual. That which is not moral is also not spiritual because the moral nature is a faint expression again, though inwardly, of the spiritual nature within us. We are after the spirit, we are in search of truth, and the practice of self-control is only a form of the return of the spirit to itself.

Such being the case, spiritual exercise is, at the same time, a moral exercise. We should not be moral only because the world would expect morality of us. That would again be outward morality, and the inner nature need not be in conformity with it. What we would do when we are absolutely alone, even when nobody sees us, would be a sort of indication of our inner nature. It is not that we always behave properly because there is the fear of social censure, social restriction, social excommunication, and many other such things which are very inconvenient to physical existence in the world. On account of such limitations imposed on our very physical being in life by the existence of other persons external to us, we manufacture a kind of ethics and morality for our practical life. But this is manufactured morality and not a genuine or natural morality of ours. What is natural to us would be there even if people are not to expect anything of us. We need not be told with a raised rod in hand that such and such a thing is the principle to be followed or the law to guide our life.

Spiritual morality, or yoga morality, is an inner command of ourselves, and we are concerned only with this morality. We are not concerned with social morality because what the society thinks of us or what we would expect society to think of us is a little different from what we would appear in front of the cosmic forces. The cosmic forces have eyes to see, just as people have eyes to see us. Now, we may hide our nature from the observation of the eyes of people in the world, but we cannot hide ourselves from cosmic forces. There is, as some philosophers put it, a peculiar prehensive contact that we establish between ourselves and the forces of the world.

The world sees us in two ways. It can see with outer eyes, and it can also see us through inner eyes. When we come in contact with an object or a human being, the contact is again twofold. It can be external, and it can be internal. Attraction and repulsion are not necessarily external forms of behaviour, but they are internal events which manifest signs outside. Occasionally we are automatically attracted or repelled by certain persons and things even if we have not come in contact with them earlier. This is prehensive activity of our inner nature moving towards or away from the inner structure of another person or object, due to an invisible relationship that exists between things.

True morality, or moral conduct, spiritually speaking, would be that which would be approved of by the inner nature of things. We are not talking of political morality, international ethics or social conduct. These are the expressions of that inward law which seems to be reigning supreme throughout the cosmos. There are what are known as satya and rita, truth and cosmic order, operating everywhere. Cosmic order is the expression of truth, satya, which precedes rita, the law of the universe. Rita is only an external expression of the inner stability of the cosmos, which is truth.

From this analogy we can draw the conclusion that though external morality is very, very necessary indeed for life, it is not necessarily the inner morality because inwardly we may be different personalities from what we appear outwardly, yet we may be defeated in our purposes if we are inwardly counterfeit. What paves for success in life is inner morality, and not outer conduct. If inwardly we are hypocritical or counterfeit, externally we cannot expect success in life. Success is purely an inner event. It is not an external, historical process. It is the inner nature manifesting itself as external experience. This is the subtle anatomy of human life, invisible to external observation but reigning supreme everywhere as the only law operating in the universe.

What we are impelled to do from within ourselves is our moral nature. The yogi is a person who, as mystics sometimes say, tries to fly alone to the Alone. We are in this world as unbefriended units of spirit. No external social associations can be attributed to this spark of the spirit that we are. The spark of the spirit in us, or rather, what we are, is not a social unit. It does not belong to a conglomeration of bodies or personalities. It is unique in nature, incomparable in character. It is this spark of the spirit that tries to unite itself with the cosmic spirit, and this process is called yoga. Hence, it is a wholly internal life that we live when we live a life of yoga.

We have to disabuse ourselves of the notion that yoga is a social affair. It is absolutely not. It is purely a personal affair because it is an attunement of a personal inner nature of the individual with the cosmic nature of creation as a whole. Society comes with it, because what we call society is nothing but a group of individuals. It is not something absolutely independent of individuality. There is no such thing as society independent of individuals. It is only a name that we give to relationships that we establish among ourselves, and not an entity by itself.

So we should not be under any kind of illusion that our success depends upon what the world will think of us or does think of us. The world is a relationship. It is not an existence by itself. What is existent is the spirit, rather than the letter. The letter has to be distinguished from the spirit. The essentiality or the substantiality is different from the outer coating or the accretion that has grown over it.

Thus, at the very outset, when we are on the first ladder of yoga, we have to be inwardly in conformity with what is known as spiritual goodness, apart from the good social conduct that we may manifest for the sake of practical life. Social goodness is utilitarian. It exists only as long as other people exist. But inner morality exists even if other people do not exist. Even if you are to be alone in a forest, inner morality persists. As you know very well, if you are to live alone in a cave or a forest with no friends outside you, nobody to look at you, what is the good of social morality? You need not be concerned with it at all because that is a relationship with outward people. But that relationship ceases when there are no people outside you. If you are to be a meditator, an advanced yogi in a distant place, in a cave or a forest in the Himalayas, what sort of morality do you have to form for yourself? It is the inner attitude. It has nothing to do with existence or non-existence of a person. The sun shines even if there is nothing to shine upon. The sun does not say, “There is no object outside for me to shine upon; therefore, I will not shine.” It is not shining because there are objects outside to be illumined but because it is its nature to shine.

Similarly, morality is not concerned with people outside. Whether people are there or not, morality does exist. It is an inner attitude or outlook of consciousness, and not necessarily concerned with the existence or non-existence of other persons and things. It is a very subtle process or attitude of our own personal nature, which will persist as long as we exist in this world.

Hence, the first step in yoga is to be a moral unit rather than merely a social unit. We have been accustomed to live in society, and we always think in terms of society. There is no other way of thinking for us. Whenever we think, we think in terms of other persons. Is there any other way of thinking in the world? There is, and that is the spiritual way, since the spiritual way of thinking is unique in the sense that it does not stand in need of any external object or person. It can work for itself. It can stand on its own legs.

For this purpose, we may have to place ourselves in such circumstances as would be conducive to spiritual progress. Either we physically place ourselves in solitariness, living in isolated places, to see how far we have grown in our spiritual outlook of things, or if we are to live in the midst of persons and things for any reason whatsoever, we have to adopt an inner attitude for our own self irrespective of the visible existence of persons and things outside. This is a more difficult technique. To be in the midst of people and yet to think as if they are not there is a little difficult, and yet this is the procedure that we have to adopt when we have a spiritual outlook of things.

The spiritual outlook is a universal outlook. It is not concerned with individualities or persons or objects. It applies to all things in general, uniformly like law or the principle of justice. It is the preparation of consciousness to adjust itself with the impersonality of character that is inner morality. When we gird up our loins and make a resolution that we shall live in conformity with the cosmic principles, then it is that we have lived a moral life inwardly. When we are inwardly moral, we also feel satisfied, while if we are merely outwardly moral and not inwardly so, some dissatisfaction would be gnawing into our vitals. It is inner non-conformity to morality, while there may be an outer conformity to it, that causes unhappiness in the core of our hearts. Outwardly we are fully moral, ethical and in conformity with the principles of justice and law, but inwardly we are in variance from the principles that demand of us a particular behaviour.

As spiritual conduct is super-individual, super-social, and sometimes it looks even super-logical, noting all these problems and difficulties on the spiritual path, we have been time and again advised to place ourselves at the disposal of a Master or a Guru who has trodden the path and known the pitfalls.

Many a time we express ourselves vehemently in practical life. This vehement expression is an insignia that inwardly we are imbalanced. Moral conduct is a golden mean of approach; it is not an extreme of behaviour. All goodness is a force that is struck between two extremes. When we go to extremes, even goodness becomes badness. This is, again, a difficult point to grasp not only in outward conduct but also in the development of inner character. We should not be vehement in the expression of any of our opinions, notions or ideas. Moderate expression is moral expression, moderateness in every level of our life, and an attempt to express the impersonal to the best of our ability in practical life.

What is moderate is also impersonal, and vice versa. The impersonal does not lean towards any particular notion or extreme. It is the personal that leads to extremes, and where the impersonal manifests itself even in the smallest modicum of percentage, there moderate behaviour is also visible. Moderateness in every form of personal expression is the impersonal peeping through the personality. It would be seen in every one of our activities, physical as well as psychological. You would not be in a haste to do anything when you are moderate in your conduct. You do not run sweating and toiling, as people sometimes run to catch trains. Even when catching a train, why do you run? Go half an hour before the time. What do you lose? This is another kind of peculiarity in human behaviour.

We find it very hard to be moderate in anything. We talk too much or we observe mauna. We cannot talk moderately, talk when it is necessary and in proper language, proper expression, proper accent, and with the proper idea conveyed. This is all very difficult for us. We always shriek as if the throat is bursting, or we will observe one month of mauna and not talk at all. Both these things are very easy to do, but to be moderate is difficult. Physical activity also has to express the impersonal in it, not going to the extremes. Complete hibernation is one extreme, and fidgeting and running about constantly in a state of restlessness of nerves and body is another extreme. In speech, in action and in thought, we have to express moderate conduct in our life.

Again we have to remember, we do this not because others would approve of it. This morality has nothing to do with others. It is only a training of our personality to become more and more impersonal so that we may finally attain to that supreme impersonality of Godhood. We have to remember this point again and again that this tapasya, this austerity, this self-control, this moderateness of behaviour, this inner morality that we are practising, is not at all a law that we are abiding by from the external point of view, but an inner contact that we are establishing with whatever is cosmic in its nature. In activity, in speech and in thought, morality has to be expressed.

Now, the moderate is the most difficult thing to understand. While extremes can be investigated into and studied, that which is the golden mean cannot be studied because it always escapes notice. The subtle always escapes our observation, like the fine edge of a sword or a razor. You can see a blunt edge, but you cannot see a fine edge because it is very subtle. In one sense we may say this inner morality is as subtle as the sharpened edge of a razor or of a sword, and is difficult to tread, as the Kathopanishad put it. Kṣurasya dhārā niśitā duratyayā, durgam pathas tat kavayo vadanti (Katha 1.3.14): Hard indeed is this path of inner morality, of impersonality, of subtlety of perception, of moderateness of character and conduct.

To be moderate is difficult because it is really self-control. Self-control is nothing but moderateness of inner and outward nature. This is the highest form of tapas that we can think of, and this is the most difficult form of tapas that we could practise. Try it and see. This would be an impossibility after a few days. The nature will express itself in its extremes once again. To weigh everything in proper proportion while we speak or think or act would be a difficult job. When we speak, when we write, and when we develop relationships with other people, extremes have to be avoided because, again, we have to remember here that truth is not an extreme. It is that quintessence of behaviour, quintessence of spirit which comes out when we squeeze all experience of its external relationships and come down to the minimal experience, the irreducible minimum of reality.

It is, therefore, necessary that we frame a program of our life and a regular routine of our day. This is what we call the spiritual diary or the self-check-up, a ready reckoner for our personal conduct and life. What is the program for our life? If we are to live for another forty or fifty years in this world, what are we supposed to do in this world? This would be our program of life. In accordance with this program that we have before our mental vision of our whole life, we have to prepare a daily routine for ourselves because the daily program is a link in the chain of life’s program. Many links make the chain. Many days make the year, and our life. So many daily programs make life’s program. Hence, the daily program should naturally be a microcosmic pattern of the life’s program that we have before ourselves. We may glibly say that life’s program is God-realisation. Well, it is true. But then the daily program also has to be in conformity with this ideal. It cannot be at variance with it.

The time and the place that we select for our life and our sadhana should be well chosen and regulated. First of all, the choosing of the place and the atmosphere is essential, and also the timings of the program. It is seen that a tenacious adherence to principle in respect of place and time is of great help in the success of sadhana. We have to be persistent in our effort and adhere to the same routine of program, not changing it every day. It is very boring to continue the same program every day, and that is why we have varieties of programs. But variety is not very helpful, just as when we want to drive a nail on the wall, we do not drive it at different places because then it will not go in. We have to hit the hammer on the nail at the very spot where we want to drive it in. Though it may be difficult in the beginning, by a constant hammering we will find the nail goes in. Or it is something like digging a well. We dig at the same spot so that we may find water. If we dig a few feet in a hundred places, we will not get water.

Likewise is sadhana. Our probing should be at one spot, and it should be a persistent probing until the depth is reached, and not look at varieties and beauties of patterns of multitudeousness that may satisfy our curiosity but would not conduce to our inner culture. Sadhana is a tapas. We may again remind ourselves of this. It is not an entertainment that we are offered. It is not a pleasure that the senses receive. It is a restraint that we exercise over the pleasure-seeking habit of our personality, our sensory nature.

We always seek pleasure, even in sadhana. It should be satisfying. It must be beautiful in the sense that the senses should be satisfied. So we change places, change Gurus, change the process of sadhana, change mantras, change methods of meditation, and start reading varieties of books because this gives a kind of satisfaction to the mind. Variety gives pleasure to the mind. The mind cannot tolerate monotony of any kind. But concentration is nothing but a peculiar kind of monotony that we introduce to the mind. It is thinking of one thing only. We cannot give variety to the mind in meditation because then there would be no depth of thought. There would be only width, but no depth. What we need is depth, a probing deeply into the subtlety of our inner nature so that we may reach the spirit within us.

Hence, in our daily program, which we have to chalk out, we have to be very conservative, and not very liberal. The program should be tight so that we may have no time to think of those factors which are exterior to sadhana. As Jadabharata was bound on account of being entangled in a factor which was not conducive to his sadhana, so would be the case with every sadhaka if he pokes his nose in matters which are not concerned with his sadhana. Even just at the entrance to heaven there may be a road leading to hell. We should not think that heaven is visible to the eyes. Even at the entrance of heaven, there is a hole that leads to hell just below, and we can drop into it, if we like.

So is the fate of the sadhakas. It may look as though everything is clear before our eyes and we are on the path, but we may forget that even the least lenience given to the mind can lead us completely astray from our objective. Therefore, a very powerful self-discipline program of the day is essential. The items of the program should be reduced to the minimum, to the barest necessity, and should not contain a hundred varieties to distract the attention of the mind.

Bhakti yoga sadhana, raja yoga sadhana, jnana yoga sadhana, and karma yoga sadhana are supposed to be the broad divisions of spiritual practice. But all these yogas have a common feature underlying them, namely, self-discipline. It is this self-discipline that paves the way to success in any of these yogas, and therefore, while we commence sadhana we have to take into consideration those common features which are applicable to any of the yogas. In the initial stages it is difficult for us to judge what our path is, just as in the beginning stage of education we are taught many subjects, though we may specialise in any one or two later on. So it is in sadhana. In the beginning stages we have to be well acquainted with the broad, common factors applicable to all the paths. Then we may specialise in concentrated forms of sadhana. Study of a chosen scripture, japa of a given mantra, concentration on a given concept or a chosen method may be regarded as the most common features in all the yogas. These are the minimal requirements. All these three mentioned – swadhaya, japa and dhyana – have one aim before them, namely, the collectedness of mind, the composure of mind, or the concentration of mind. But with this practice we have also to combine the emotional aspect of our nature, which has much to say in our sadhana. Swadhaya, japa and dhyana are primarily the concern of the will and the understanding; but what about the emotion?

Most sadhakas have no occasion to express their emotions. This is the reason why they feel out of sorts when they live for some years in a monastery or in a secluded spot. This is also the reason why people go to cities and go on long tours, etc., because it is difficult to give sufficient food to the emotional nature within us unless proper steps are taken to understand the structure of our emotions and the need of these emotions. This is a very important factor in sadhana. If this is ignored or missed, the whole of our effort will end in utter failure.

As a bird flies with two wings and not merely with one wing, or we walk with two legs, so also we may say that sadhana has two aspects: the discipline of the understanding, and the discipline of the emotion. We should not lay too much emphasis merely on one side. There are people who are very sentimental, always weeping and crying in utter devotion as if they are in front of God. But it is not always that they exercise their understanding. Their will is weak. That is one weakness to which we may be susceptible. There are others who are very adamant in exercising their will, but they emotionally are bankrupt and can be led astray by uncontrolled emotion at any time in their life.

It is, therefore, necessary to draw two columns in our spiritual diary, concerning the development and discipline of the buddhi-shakti and the iccha-shakti, or the emotional nature. We should not imagine that we have gone above emotions. No sadhaka can get over these emotions ultimately, because that is the pumping station in our personality. It is the powerhouse which supplies energy to our nature. Emotion is the force, the incentive behind thought and action. It is a dynamo. How can we say it is unimportant? But it has to be properly diverted. The energy that is released by this dynamo has to be channelised according to the decision of the understanding. The understanding plays a part, and the emotion also plays a part. While emotion supplies the necessary energy, understanding knows how to utilise this energy. If one is lacking, either we are bereft of energy or we are bereft of the proper perspective, or the right understanding, to apply or utilise this energy within us.

When emotion is misdirected or pent up without proper utilisation, we become inwardly unhappy without our knowing what is actually happening to us. Every one of you should study your own personal nature and find out if you are emotionally happy or emotionally tied up. Emotionally, most of us are not happy. We are restrained from various corners of the world in the expression of our emotions. While it is true that nobody would allow their emotions to go riot, those emotions have to be restrained, but they have to be restrained in a manner that they are put to activity. The emotion has to be expressed in a healthy manner, in a constructive way, so that they make us happy and also enable us to grow spiritually.

The psychological structure within us is, thus, a very beautifully thought-out complex of structure which contains within it various elements of human nature. It is from the point of view of these various elements in our nature that the various yogas have been prescribed: karma yoga, bhakti yoga, raja yoga and jnana yoga.

While it is necessary that we should be emotionally healthy, we should also be healthy in our understanding because when we cannot understand, we also cannot appreciate. Lack of appreciation or wrong appreciation is the outcome of lack of understanding or erroneous understanding, because we have been ignoring one side of our nature and laying overemphasis on the other side of our nature. So draw two columns in your diary, as I said: columns pertaining to the understanding, and to the emotion.

You wake up in the morning fresh and revived if you are emotionally healthy. If you are emotionally unhealthy you get up weak, as if you have done a day’s work. Even when you get up in the morning, you feel weak. What has happened to you? Are you tired even after sleep? Because the emotions are tied, they have been very tense even in sleep. Though the purpose of going to sleep is to release tension, it has not really been released. You have tied up your emotions into a bundle and never allowed them to express themselves in any way, and then gone to bed. Therefore, you got up from bed with a small, shrunken face, with a feeble body, and exhausted even after sleep, as if throughout the night you are very busy. This is due to emotional imbalance, an unhealthy emotion which has not been properly diverted.

This is a very dangerous position in which we may find ourselves, and this may ruin our entire life. We may be thoroughly unhappy and disgusted with things in general, and we may die miserable if this point is not taken into consideration. That is one side, a great point to be remembered and thoroughly investigated like a psychoanalyst or a physician. We must be merciless in the analysis of our personality. No leniency is to be given when we are trying to know our own selves.

Have you any unfulfilled desires? Answer this question openly. If you have unfulfilled desires, you will have pent-up emotions. You cannot fulfil all your desires, because society will not allow it. You know that very well. For fear of social censure, you may thrust your desires inwardly and bury them, but they are not dead. Like snakes, they are inside in a cave. They are cobras, very venomous. Unfulfilled desires, desires which you want to fulfil but you are not allowed to fulfil by human society, cause tense emotions inside. If you daily go to sleep with these emotions, then naturally you will become an exhausted, worn-out personality, though you really have done nothing in life.

To get out of this situation, your understanding has to be exercised. Here your buddhi-shakti comes into play. When you have so many desires which you want to fulfil but social laws will not allow the expression of these desires, what are you supposed to do? Are you to die unhappily, or are you to fulfil your desires, violating all laws of society? Neither of these is possible. Neither are you supposed to violate social laws, nor are you supposed to thrust your unfulfilled desires inside. They have to be given a proper vent, in an artistic manner. Art is the expression of beauty and emotion; and sadhana is a great art, perhaps the greatest of arts. The greatest of beauties is the beauty of sadhana, the system that you introduce, the methodology that you adopt and the balance of approach, which is the characteristic of art, and which you introduce into the system of sadhana.

Understanding and emotion have to go together for this very reason. If emotion alone is to work, you may violate laws and become a criminal. And if understanding alone is to work without emotion, you will be barren. You will be an intellectual scientist without any vitality or substance or pith in your life. You will be a pedant, an academician, without a living spirit in your personality, if emotion is divested in you and you have only understanding or intellect. On the other hand, if it is only emotion, I told you what the danger is. When understanding and emotion come together, you have a whole personality. That is what is called a balanced human nature. This is what they call goodness of conduct. Goodness is not sentiment. It is not merely sympathy that you show by emotional outburst. It is an intelligent appreciation of values. You love because you understand. You do not love because you are emotional.

Healthy life is, therefore, a blend of understanding and emotion. Intelligence and affection combined together makes for a healthy life. This gives us strength of personality. Where either of the two aspects is lacking, strength also is lacking. Power of personality, the magnetism of our individuality or nature, is nothing but the expression, the radiance of the blending of understanding and emotion. Just as we need a balanced diet to keep our body healthy, we need a balanced nature to keep us living with substance in it. A balanced nature is the balance of understanding and emotion.

In the Bhagavadgita we have a grand, elaborate gospel which speaks of this blending of the human personality, which was disintegrated in the beginning, as we see in the instance of Arjuna, whose nature was completely torn to shreds. All the five sheaths of his body were shivering and trembling, tending to disintegration. They had to be integrated by the beautiful gospel of the Bhagavadgita which is, as we usually say, a synthesis of all the yogas. The intelligent nature, the volitional nature, the emotional nature and the active nature are all put together in proper proportion, not in any excess or overemphasis. It is in the Bhagavadgita that we find a balanced emphasis on every side of human nature. This is also why we sometimes do not understand the actual spirit of the Gita. It looks as though it lays emphasis on one thing at one time and on another thing at another time, but it is not so. The different types of emphasis it lays are only to give importance to the various sides of the human personality so that we may become integrated whole beings, psychologically healthy, intelligent, powerful in will, healthy in emotion, and active to the extent necessary.

This is how we would psychoanalyse ourselves for our own selves, not for medical purposes but for a healthy understanding of our own nature, and then commence the actual methodology of sadhana, always being conscious of the different sides of our nature, like a driver in a car who knows what part of the machine is working in which manner. If some little nut or bolt is out of order and does not work properly, the driver understands where the shoe pinches. He immediately stops the car and rectifies the error. Likewise, like a good driver we have to conduct ourselves in life and drive this chariot of the body as the Upanishad tells us, while being conscious at every step that we take of all the sides of our nature – which side is getting overemphasised, which side is getting ignored – so that the ignored aspect may be brought up to its proper prominence and the overemphasised part may be scissored off to the extent necessary to grow whole from the beginning to the end. Sadhana is a wholesome approach of human nature. At every stage we are a whole. We are not a partiality of nature at any stage of our life.

Thus prepared, we may healthily begin to think a healthy form of life to conduct a healthy technique of sadhana for introducing ourselves into a healthy, universal life, which is the goal of existence.