Datta maata 14: How to conquer negative tendencies

There is a key to win over durvasanas (bad attributes). We get bad thoughts many a time. The more we try to prevent them, the more they pop up.

Long ago, there lived a king who became bald. He invited all the famous doctors in his kingdom and told them to make him get rid of his baldness by growing hair on his scalp. In those days, there were no wigs. The king also told that he would reward the doctor who is successful in his attempts. But, if they fail, then their heads would be chopped off. Many came forward because of their desire for the reward. But, many heads were chopped off for failing in the attempts. The kings used to be very strict. If their orders were not obeyed, they simply chopped off the heads.

Finally, one doctor devised an idea. He promised to bring back hair on the king’s scalp. The doctor prepared a pill by spending huge sum of money. He gave that to the king and told him that the pill is like Sree Rama’s arrow and that it would certainly make way for the hair growth. But, the condition here is that while consuming the pill, the king must not remember an inverted copper vessel. There is also another similar story about Guru and mantra. We can talk about it later. The doctor clearly stated that if the king remembers the inverted copper vessel, then his hair will not grow. Hence, the king must consume the pill when he does not remember the copper vessel.

The king thought that this very easy. He simply neglected. But, whenever the king wanted to consume the pill, he would remember the copper vessel. In the state of despair, he did not consume the pill. Even after 15 years, the king could not find even a minute to consume the pill.

Here, the seekers also face the same trouble every minute as that of the king . The bad thoughts haunt us when we do japa (repeating the mantra) or pooja (worship). We can say that such bad thoughts come to us only because of the bad deeds committed knowingly or unknowingly in our previous births.

To overcome them, one fights with them (bad thoughts). We know that if we fight with somebody face to face (directly), half of our strength goes to them. We can learn this moral from Vali and Sugriva’s story (Ramayana). Lord Rama killed Vali by hiding at the back of a tree during the combat. The bad in us also has to be killed by seeking shelter behind the tree called God and using arrows called ‘divine stories of Lord’. This means that we must engage ourselves in recollecting the divine glories of almighty instead of remembering our old vasanas (bad attributes).

By doing so, the bad thoughts automatically leave us. It is said that to win over the mind (manojayam), one has to observe the bad thoughts that crop up in the mind instead of trying to avoid them. By doing so, the spiritual practice will go ahead.

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