(Understandings from Swami Mitrananda’s talk to Yuva Veers of Youth Empowerment Program 6thbatch)
Dinayaminyau saayam praatah, shishiravasantau punarayaatah
Kaalah kreedati gacchatyayuh, tadapi na munchati aashavayuh || 12 ||
Meaning: Dawn and dusk, winter and spring come and go. In the play of time, life goes away. Even then the storm of desires does not go.
Usually in poetry, there is no logic. Poet’s have their own imaginations. But Shankara is such a wonderful philosopher & poet that he mixes poetry & logic to convey the idea. This is indeed a rare combination.
‘Time pass’ is a commonly used phrase. Colloquially a short-form also has been derived – TP.
Q: Why are you playing this game?
A: Time pass
Q: Why are you watching TV?
A: Time pass
Q: Why are you always talking over the phone?
A: I had nothing to do during this time. So, Time pass over the phone.
If we are alone, we need something for Time pass. People even keep eating things for Time pass (what a discovery to kill time!).
If we have some extra money, will we just throw it away saying “Time pass”? Why not? Because we value it. Why do we fail to see the value of time? Is not Time Passed = Life Passed? Every day passed is one day reduced from our life. And what worthwhile thing did we do in that one day? Working people generally take the weekend for relaxing. After six days of living the life of a donkey, the seventh day is spent for relaxing. How do you relax? Getting up late, watching TV, going out for a movie, go out for a dinner, etc. Once in a while we can understand, but there are people who do this throughout their life. What are they doing to themselves? In the whole life, nothing worthwhile is done. Nothing for them, nothing for the society? Can we call a life lived for eating, sleeping & mating as a human life? Animals live better than this. They do all this and yet they lead a stress-free life.
When the life is passed this unintelligent way, with no time spent to introspect & study oneself, no time spent in contemplation and thinking about the purpose of one’s own existence, one gets old and what is left with him is a bundle of desires that he has acquired throughout the way and a weak body. There’s no limit set by man for acquiring & enjoying. More and more desires are piled up by the time one goes into old age. And then, the body is weak, but desires are strong. Stomach is full of ulcers but tongue craves for spice. A person is diabetic but can’t resist the temptation of sweets. Liver is weak but cannot quit alcohol. Mind is willing but body is killing.
Old age and disease cannot be avoided. But how to age gracefully is in our hands. Not all people realize this. Not all people think it is possible. Most of them look at desires as a nature of man and that it is quite normal for one to have desires. We can only empathise those people and give our prayers. For the rest, who feel that they are the Master of their Fate and the Captain of their Soul, they still have a chance.
Some day we have to drop desires. Wisdom is not to postpone it. Enjoy, but don’t Crave. Don’t be a Victim. Become a Master.