Having had a call to the higher life, and realising to some extent the hollowness of the external phenomena and the internal emotions, the pupil faces a feeling of dissatisfaction and negation, and he asks, “Granted that the world and its pleasures are unreal, and that there is Reality within me, what shall I do?
Shall I renounce the world, and pass my time in solitary brooding and inaction?
The reply to this question given by the Teacher was in the negative.
Stand where you are is the first injunction. Do not try to run away from the post your karma has assigned you, or you have created for yourself. Make a halt and see your duty to yourself, your family and society.
Then think how you can discharge that duty in accordance with justice, truth, benevolence and dharma.
Detach your personal feelings from your duty, and discharge this to the best of your ability, keeping your heart full of love and truth, unconcerned with the results of your efforts. If you are a farmer, be a good, honest, benevolent farmer, working hard, and bestowing no thought on either the success or the failure of your undertakings.
If you are a house holder do your best in that capacity. Remember that this kind of action is the best prayer and the best offering to God.
Along with the discharge of your worldly duty devote some time to the contemplation of Reality every day. Ask, “What am I? What is the world? What is Truth? “
Your body is the temple of God. Take all reasonable care of it. Do not make it an instrument of physical enjoyment alone, but use it to reach God or Truth, and gradually rise above the limited body consciousness by devoting its activity to the service of your fellow-men.
It is essential that some time in the morning be devoted to meditation on such Truths as, “All is one.” “I am part of the ALL.” “The good of all is my good.”
Before going to bed make a thorough self-examination, and find out what your moral and spiritual gain that day has been. If it has been poor, repent and make amends, for moral and spiritual loss is indeed great and deplorable.
One unkind word, one inharmonious deed, one injurious act, one immoral thought is sufficient to lead you to ruin if not corrected at once, as the one may lead to many.
If you see anything wrong, try to see the cause of it in yourself, like the archer who, on missing the mark, finds the fault in himself.
If there is one who has brought you to the Truth, pour out true, spiritual, impersonal devotion on him, and through him to the Rishis who will some day reveal to you the wonders of the inner life.
Dharma, the law of right living.