Vedanta is a Sanskrit word taken from two words – Veda & anta. Veda means knowledge and anta means end. So, Vedanta means the end of knowledge or the culmination of wisdom. Vedanta is the research on human being done by the yogis and spiritual masters of the Himalayas.
In the modern-day world, most people either have material prosperity or mental peace and never both. Vedanta is the science of living life which provides the art of combining material prosperity with mental peace. It’s a digest of knowledge provided by a galaxy of sages and saints.
The inner personality of a human being is constituted by the mind and intellect. Mind comprises impulses, feelings, emotions, likes, and dislikes. The Intellect is superior to the mind. The faculty which thinks, reasons, judges, and decides. The Intellect has the capacity to direct and control the mind.
Development of Intellect is different from being intelligent. The world offers opportunities to develop intelligence. Information gathered from external agencies like digital resources, books, teachers, and educational institutions make one intelligent. While Intellect is developed by individual effort, through a process of questions and inquiry, not taking anything for granted. This approach must begin from early childhood. Constant application of this method cultivates and strengthens the Intellect.
Vedanta fortifies the human intellect with knowledge and prepares one to face and overcome any challenge in the world to lead a stress-free and successful life. Some of the suggestions are as follows:
- Actions performed by the body must change from being self-centered to selfless service.
- Emotions felt in the mind should embrace the world with love and compassion, not preferential attachment.
- Through independent reflection the intellect must seek true knowledge of the Self, the Divinity within. Not gather mere information and become scholastic.
The above three disciplines implemented in life lead to a state of peace and bliss.
Five tips for gaining material prosperity:
- Fix an ideal for oneself and the team to work for.
- Act dynamically and maintain mental equanimity.
- Lead and not just point the way to colleagues at work.
- Be objective and optimize productivity.
- Maintain a sense of dispassionate passion.
Five tips to lead a happy life:
- Intellect maintains governance over the mind’s activity.
- Assess and relate appropriately with people, situations & environment.
- Perform obligatory duties and flourish.
- Have all possessions but don’t develop possessiveness.
- Live by the right choices and not by chance.
Bereft of this knowledge, people are becoming helpless victims of the challenges of the world. Incapable of dealing with situations they succumb to external pressures. The philosophy of Vedanta gives the eternal principles of life and living. The principles learned and practiced prepare the individual with the complete manual of life to face the world of opportunities.
The Indian sage, Swami Vivekananda declares: While every other religion depended upon the life of some person who was its founder, Vedanta was based upon eternal principles. All ideals are true, and the different religious systems were but special paths for the attainment of these various ideas, which when intensified, were certain to draw out the divinity in human.
Text by S A Sreedharan
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