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The fact is that in the Kaliyuga one cannot wholly follow the path laid down in the Vedas. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 297.)

The path of the Vedas is not meant for the Kaliyuga. The path of the Tantra is efficacious. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 311.)

It is extremely difficult to perform the rites enjoined in the Vedas. Further, at the present time people lead the lives of slaves. (1) It is said that those who serve others for twelve years or so become slaves. They acquire the traits of those they serve. While serving their masters they acquire the rajas, the tamas, the spirit of violence, the love of luxury, and the other traits of their masters. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 297.)

(1) A possible reference to the British Raj.

Please eat your meals regularly and then practice your japam and meditation. The Divine Mother is not a stranger. She is your very own. She will not be angry if you eat first and then call on her. In this Kali yuga the human body cannot bear excessive austerities, and it is hard to practice spiritual disciplines if one's health is not good. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in TLWG, 164.)

In the Kaliyuga, man, being totally dependent on food for life, cannot altogether shake off the idea that he is the body. In this state of mind it is not proper for him to say, "I am He." (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 103.)

One should constantly repeat the name of God. The name of God is highly effective in the Kaliyuga. The practice of yoga is not possible in this age, for the life of man depends on food. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 241.)

It is said that, in the Kaliyuga, if a man can weep for God one day and one night, he sees Him. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 241.)

In this kali yuga God's name is the essential thing. Chanting God's name will bring the results of meditation, worship, and sacrifice. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in RAWSH, 53.)

Karma - See Natural Law - The Law of Karma

Karma Yoga - The yoga of works or action

He who in this world would please Ahuramazda must try to develop the creation of Ahuramazda ... and to please the righteous by relieving suffering and by protecting them from the evil-minded. (He) is not to seek his own welfare and profit through harming any other, but becomes pitiful towards God's creatures. (The Lord God Ahuramazda in GZ, 113.)

The teaching of goodness to mankind is more especially the doing of good works oneself. (Zarathustra in GZ, 11.)

Do not put off for tomorrow any good work you can do today. (Zarathustra, GZ, 113.)

If you can understand and follow [the method of the yoga of action], you will be able to break the chains of desire which bind you to your actions. In this yoga, even the abortive attempt is not wasted. Nor can it produce a contrary result. Even a little practice of this yoga will save you from the terrible wheel of rebirth and death. In this yoga, the will is directed singly toward one ideal. When a man lacks this discrimination, his will wanders in all directions, after innumerable aims. (Sri Krishna in BG, 39.)

Work is holy When the heart of the worker Is fixed on the Highest. (Sri Krishna in BG, 47.)

Whatever your action, Food or worship, Whatever the gift That you give to another; Whatever you vow To the work of the spirit: O son of Kunti, Lay these also As offerings before me. (Sri Krishna in BG, 84.)

It is hard to renounce action Without following the yoga of action. This yoga purifies The man of meditation, Bringing him soon to Brahman. (Sri Krishna in BG, 57.)

Let him who would climb In meditation To heights of the highest Union with Brahman Take for his path The yoga of action: Then when he nears That height of oneness His acts will fall from him, His path will be tranquil. (Sri Krishna in BG, 63.)

Action rightly renounced brings freedom: Action rightly performed brings freedom: Both are better Than mere shunning of action. (Sri Krishna in BG, 56.)

The wise see knowledge and action as one: They see truly. Take either path And tread it to the end: The end is the same. There the followers of action Meet the seekers after knowledge In equal freedom. (Sri Krishna in BG, 57.)

To the follower of the yoga of action, The body and the mind, The sense-organs and the intellect Are instruments only: He knows himself other than the instrument And thus his heart grows pure. (Sri Krishna in BG, 58.)

He who does the task Dictated by duty, Caring nothing For fruit of the action, He is a yogi, A true sannyasin. But he who follows His vow to the letter By mere refraining: Lighting no fire At the ritual offering, Making excuse For avoidance of labour, He is no yogi, No true sannyasin. (Sri Krishna in BG, 62-3.)

Of what use are words of wisdom to the man who is unwise? Of what use is a lamp to a man who is blind? Hear the essence of thousands of sacred books: to help others is virtue: to hurt others is sin. (The Buddha in DP, 27.)

Blessed is he that considereth the poor: the Lord will deliver him in time of trouble. The Lord will preserve him, and keep him alive; and he shall be blessed upon the earth: and thou wilt not deliver him unto the will of his enemies. (Psalm 41:1-2.)

Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of thine hand to do it. Say not unto thy neighbour, Go, and come again, and to morrow I will give; when thou hast it by thee. (Proverbs 3:27-8.)

The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself. (Proverbs 11:25.)

Whoso mocketh the poor reproacheth his maker: and he that is glad at calamities shall not go unpunished. (Proverbs 17:5.)

He that oppresseth the poor reproacheth his Maker: but he that honoureth him hath mercy upon the poor. (Proverbs 14:31.)

He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the Lord; and that which he hath given will he pay him again. (Proverbs 19:17.)

Whoso stoppeth his ears at the cry of the poor, he also shall cry himself, but shall not be heard. (Proverbs 21:13.)

Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. (Jesus in Matthew 7:21.)

Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets. (Jesus in Matthew 7:12.)

Whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward. (Jesus in Matthew 10:42.)

Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: For I was an hungered, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, and fed thee? Or thirsty, and gave thee to drink? When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. (Jesus in Matthew 25:34-40.)

Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.... For the Son of man shall come in the glory (1) of his Father with his angels [on the day of liberation]; and then he shall reward every man according to his works. (Jesus in Matthew 16:24 and 27.)

(1) An epithet of the Mother or Holy Spirit.

What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? Can faith save him? (1) If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, And one of you say unto them, depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? ... Faith without works is dead.... By works a man is justified, and not be faith only. For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also. (James 2:14-6, 20, 24, and 26.)

(1) I.e., bring him to enlightenment?

As it is written, He that had gathered much had nothing over; and he that had gathered little had no lack. (St. Paul in II Corinthians 8:15.)

Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver. (St. Paul in II Corinthians 9:7.)

Work is only a means to the realization of God. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 143.)

If a householder gives in charity in a spirit of detachment, he is really doing good to himself and not to others. It is God alone that he serves - God, who dwells in all beings.... If a man thus serves God through all beings, not through men alone but through animals and other living beings as well; if he doesn't seek name and fame, or heaven after death; if he doesn't seek any return from those he serves; if he can carry on his work of service in this spirit - then he performs truly selfless work, work without attachment. Through such selfless work he does good to himself. This is called karmayoga. This too is a way to realize God. But it is very difficult, and not suited to the Kaliyuga. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 671.)

For the next fifty years let all other vain Gods disappear from our minds. This is the only God that is awake: our own race - everywhere His hands, everywhere His feet, everywhere His ears, He covers everything. All other Gods are sleeping. Why should we vainly go after them, when we can worship the God that we see all around us, the Virat [the Cosmic God]? The first of all worships is the worship of the Virat, of those all around us. These are all our Gods - men and animals; and the first Gods we have to worship are our own countrymen. (Swami Vivekananda in GLWT, 52.)

"Whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men." (1) Think how you would do a piece of work if you knew that the Master was coming at once to look at it; just in that way you must do all your work. Those who know most will most know all that that verse means. And there is another like it, much older: "Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might." (2) (Krishnamurti, AFM, 59-60.)

(1) Colossians 3:23. (2) Ecclesiastes 9:10.

If you allow the idea of separateness from any evil thing or person to grow up within you, by so doing you create karma which will bind you to that thing or person till your soul recognizes that it cannot be isolated. Remember that the sin and shame of the world are your sin and shame; for you are a part of it; your karma is inextricably woven with the great Karma. And before you can attain knowledge you must have passed through all places, foul and clean alike. Therefore, remember that the soiled garment you shrink from touching may have been yours yesterday, may be yours tomorrow. And if you turn with horror from it, when it is flung upon your shoulders, it will cling the more closely to you. The self-righteous man makes for himself a bed of mire. Abstain because it is right to abstain -- not that yourself shall be kept clean. (Ascended Master, probably the Master Hilarion, channelling through Mabel Collins, LOP, 8-9.)

You must be so filled with the intense desire to serve that you are ever on the watch to render it to all around you -- not to man alone, but even to animals and plants. You must render it in small things every day, that the habit may be formed, so that you may not miss the rare opportunity when the great thing offers itself to be done. For if you yearn to be one with God, it is not for your own sake; it is that you may be a channel through which His love may flow to reach your fellow-men. (Krishnamurti, AFM, 75.)

Often when there is an opportunity to help some one, the body feels: "How much trouble it will be for me; let some one else do it." But the man replies to his body: "You shall not hinder me in doing good work." (Krishnamurti, AFM, 21-2.)

One of the great laws is that in order to receive we must give, for, like the giant water-basin, it can receive the heavenly rains until it chokes and swells and runs over, giving of its abundance to the dry parched ground beneath it. If it does not, then it bursts and can contain no more. But if it does give of its abundance then, when the great rain comes again from heaven, it will be replenished all the more and again can give as the hungry earth drinks in every drop and waits for the great water vessel to give of its abundance. (Brother Andre, SA, 73.)

Karma Yoga - We cannot escape the need to act - See also Dharma - Goodness in action, pure motivation

Freedom from activity is never achieved by abstaining from action. Nobody van become perfect by merely ceasing to act. In fact, nobody can ever rest from activity even for a moment. All are helplessly forced to act, by the gunas. (Sri Krishna in BG, 44.)

Activity is better than inertia. Act, but with self-control. If you are lazy, you cannot even sustain your own body. (Sri Krishna in BG, 45.)

So long as you breathe the free air of earth, you are under obligation to render grateful service. Only he who has fully mastered the breathless state (1) is freed from cosmic imperatives. (Sri Yukteswar Giri to Paramahansa Yogananda in AY, 119.)

(1) Nirvikalpa samadhi, where the mind and its functions usually fall still.

When activity is excessive, happiness will decrease; when activity is less, ... happiness will [increase]. But knowledge remains the same. Although activity is inimical to that (kind of) happiness which is distinct from Liberation while alive, it is not inimical to Liberation while alive, since there is not delusion of bondage by activity and inactivity as far as the Self is concerned. (Ramana Maharshi, JGE, 22.)

Karma Yoga - Act righteously - See Dharma - Act righteously

Karma Yoga - Act but without attachment

No human being can give up action altogether, but he who gives up the fruits of action is said to be non-attached. (Sri Krishna in BG, 120.)

Do your duty, always; but without attachment. That is how a man reaches the ultimate Truth; by working without anxiety about results. ... Your motive in working should be to set others, by your example, on the path of duty. (Sri Krishna in BG, 46-7.)

He whose mind dwells Beyond attachment, (1) Untainted by ego, (2) No act shall bind him With any bond. (Sri Krishna in BG, 121-2.)

(1) Rajas. (2) Tamas.

All, without exception, perform work. Even to chant the name and glories of God is work, as is the meditation of the non-dualist on 'I am He'. Breathing is also an activity. There is no way of renouncing work altogether. So do your work, but surrender the result to God. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 113-4.)

Only one who is free from all the latent tendencies (vasanas) is a Sage. That being so how can the tendencies of karma affect him who is entirely unattached to activity? (Ramana Maharshi, SI, Chapter 2, Question 26.)

As there is no rule that action should depend upon a sense of being the doer it is unnecessary to doubt whether any action will take place without a doer or an act of doing. Although the officer of a government treasury may appear, in the eyes of others, to be doing his duty attentively and responsibly all day long, he will be discharging his duties without attachment, thinking 'I have no real connection with all this money' and without a sense of involvement in his mind. In the same manner a wise householder may also discharge without attachment the various household duties which fall to his lot according to his past karma, like a tool in the hands of another. Action and knowledge are not obstacles to each other. (Ramana Maharshi, SI, Chapter 2, Question 23.)

Karma Yoga - Eradicate the sense of doership - See Jnana Yoga - Self-Enquiry - Eradicate the sense of doership

Karma Yoga - Impart spiritual knowledge where appropriate

One who gives of the little he knows to those who are fit for it, is more acceptable than the one who knows but neither helps nor benefits deserving persons. (Zarathustra in GZ, 10.)

Surely the good man is the bad man's teacher; and the bad man is the good man's business. If the one does not respect his teacher, or the other doesn't love his business, his error is very great. This is indeed an important secret. (Lao-Tzu, WOL, 79.)

First realize God, see Him by means of spiritual discipline. If He imparts power, then you can do good to others; otherwise not. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 142.)

You must distinguish not only the useful from the useless, but the more useful from the less useful. To feed the poor is a good and noble and useful work; yet to feed their souls is nobler and more useful than to feed their bodies. Any rich man can feed the body, but only those who know can feed the soul. If you know, it is your duty to help others to know. (Krishnamurti, AFM, 26-7.)

Karma Yoga - True blessedness consists in good actions

The path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more, unto the perfect day. (1) (Proverbs 4:18.)

(1) "The perfect day" is the day of enlightenment, the culmination of life.

True blessedness does not consist in fine phrases. It consists in good actions. (Blessed Henry SUSO, HSU, 133.)

Karma Yoga - Act unselfishly

Perform your duties in an unselfish spirit ... without desiring any result. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 113.)

Through selfless work, love of God grows in the heart. Then, through His grace, one realizes Him in the course of time. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 109.)

Your motive in working should be to set others, by your example, on the path of duty. By these philanthropic activities you are really doing good to yourself. If you can do them disinterestedly, your mind will become pure and you will develop love of God. As soon as you have that love you will realize Him. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 108.)

Maya (1) keeps us in ignorance and entangles us in the world, whereas daya (2) makes our hearts pure and gradually unties our bonds. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 161.)

(1) The Divine Mother, Holy Spirit, or Shakti. (2) Compassion.

You must distinguish between the selfish and the unselfish. For selfishness has many forms, and when you think you have finally killed it in one of them, it arises in another as strongly as ever. But by degrees you will become so full of thought for the helping of others that there will be no room, no time, for any thought about yourself. (Krishnamurti, AFM, 34-5.)

Karma Yoga - Dedicate all action to God

The world is imprisoned in its own activity, except when actions are performed as worship of God. Therefore you must perform every action sacramentally, and be free from all attachment to results. (Sri Krishna in BG, 45.)

Whatever your action, Food or worship, Whatever the gift That you give to another; Whatever you vow To the work of the spirit: O son of Kunti, Lay these also As offerings before me. (Sri Krishna in BG, 84.)

He puts aside desire, Offering the act to Brahman. The lotus leaf rests unwetted on water: He rests on action, untouched by action. (Sri Krishna in BG, 58.)

Shake off this fever of ignorance. Stop hoping for worldly rewards. Fix your mind on the Atman. Be free from the sense of ego. Dedicate all your actions to me. (Sri Krishna in BG, 48.)

Honour the Lord with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase: So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst with new wine. (Proverbs 3:9-10.)

Whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: (1) for ye serve the Lord Christ. (St. Paul in Colossians 3:23-4.)

(1) I.e., enlightenment, which is the reward for all action.

We ought not to be weary of doing little things for the love of God, who regards not the greatness of the work, but the love with which it is performed. ... We should not wonder if, in the beginning, we often failed in our endeavors, but ... at last we should gain a habit, which will naturally produce its acts in us, without our care, and to our exceeding great delight. (Attributed to Brother Lawrence, PPG, 20.)

Karma Yoga - Renounce the fruits of action

Well may he be content to live a hundred years who acts without attachment -- who works for his work with earnestness, but without desire, not yearning for its fruits -- he, and he alone. (UPAN, 27.)

The ignorant work For the fruit of their action: The wise work also Without desire Pointing man's feet To the path of his duty. (Sri Krishna in BG, 47.)

Those who have renounced ego and desire will reap no fruit (1) at all, either in this world or in the next. (Sri Krishna in BG, 121.)

(1) That is, will incur no karmic debt.

Karma Yoga - Renunication - What is it?

Renunciation brings instant peace to the spirit. (Sri Krishna in BG, 99.)

Renunciation is said to be of three kinds. If a man, in his ignorance, renounces those actions which the scriptures ordain, his renunciation is inspired by tamas. (1) If he abstains from any action merely because it is disagreeable, or because he fears it will cause him bodily pain, his renunciation is inspired by rajas. (2) He will not obtain any spiritual benefit from such renunciation. But when a man performs an action which is sanctioned by the scriptures, and does it for duty's sake only, renouncing all attachment and desire for its fruits, then his renunciation is inspired by sattwa. (3) (Sri Krishna in BG, 120.)

(1) The guna or quality of ignorance. (2) That of craving and aversion. (3) That of purity.

As it is written, He that had gathered much had nothing over; and he that had gathered little had no lack. (St. Paul in II Corinthians 8:15.)

Renunciation is the giving-up of all the pleasures of the eyes, the ears, and the other senses, the giving-up of all objects of transitory enjoyment, the giving-up of the desire for a physical body as well as for the highest kind of spirit-body of a god. (Shankara in CJD, 35.)

Renunciation means to have dispassion for the things of the world. One cannot acquire them all of a sudden. They must be practised every day. One should renounce [the objects of lust and greed] mentally at first. Then, by the will of God, one can renounce [them] both mentally and outwardly. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 179.)

What is ... strong renunciation? One who has only a mild spirit of renunciation says, 'Well, all will happen in the course of time; let me now simply repeat the name of God.' But a man possessed of a strong spirit of renunciation feels restless for God, as the mother feels for her own child. A man of strong renunciation seeks nothing but God. He regards the world as a deep well and feels as if he were going to be drowned in it. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 165-6.)

Renunciation is an indispensable instrument of our perfection. (Sri Aurobindo, SOY, 311.)

Vairagya or renunciation [is] the utter disregard of all pleasures, ranging from the enjoyment of the sensuous objects of this world to the experience of the happiness one expects in heaven after death. (Nikhilananda, "Introduction" to SK, 42.)

Karma Yoga - Do not become attached to the family

He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. (Jesus in Matthew 10:37.)

And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or land, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life. (Jesus in Matthew 19:29.)

Kill this deadly attachment to body, wife, children and others. (Shankara in CJD, 45.)

Our love for Nature, family, friends, duties, and possessions should not occupy the supreme throne in our hearts. That is where God belongs. (Paramahansa Yogananda in SY, 47.)

All attachment disappeared; my resolution to seek God as the Friend of Friends became adamantine. "Revered Father, how can I tell my love for you? But even greater is my love for my Heavenly father, who has given me the gift of a perfect father on earth. Let me go [to an ashram], that I may someday return with a more divine understanding." (Paramahansa Yogananda, AY, 84.)

"I am seeking direct perception of God. Without Him, I cannot be satisfied with affiliation or creed or performance of good works." (Paramahansa Yogananda, AY, 85.)

Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself. They come through you, but not from you, And though they are with you, yet they belong not to you. (Kahlil Gibran, PROPH, 18.)

Karma Yoga - Renounce nostalgia

Remembrance shuts off the sweep of silence, and a mind that is caught in experience cannot be silent. Time, the movement of yesterday flowing into to-day and to-morrow, is not silence. With the cessation of this movement there is silence, and only then can that which is unnameable come into being. (Krishnamurti, COL, 2, 77.)

What is has to be discovered, not verbally, theoretically, but directly experienced. ... To understand it, must you not come with a fresh mind, unclouded by memories, by habitual responses? (Krishnamurti, COL, 2, 104.)

Experience is already in the net of time, it is already in the past, it has become a memory which comes to life only as a response to the present. Life is the present, it is not the experience. The weight and strength of experience shadow the present, and so experiencing becomes the experience. The mind is the experience, the known, and it can never be in the state of experiencing; for what it experiences is the continuation of experience. The mind only knows continuity, and it can never receive the new as long as its continuity exists. What is continuous can never be in a state of experiencing, which is a state without experience. Experience must cease for experiencing to be. (Krishamurti, COL, 1, 32.)

Reality has no continuity; it is from moment to moment, ever new, ever fresh. What has continuity can never be creative. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 45.)

What is can be understood only with the fading of tomorrow. The understanding of what is brings about transformation in the immediate present. It is this transformation that is of supreme importance. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 52.)

There is freedom when the entire being, the superficial as well as the hidden, is purged of the past. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 69.)

One of the first lessons learned on this journey [to no-self] is that the passing of each experience leaves nothing in its wake, hardly a footprint and certainly not a vivid memory. In a word, one learns to live without a past. (Bernadette Roberts, ENS, 15.)

Karma Yoga - Renounce ambition

To attain Buddhahood ... we must scatter this life's aims and objects to the wind. (Milarepa in ZTG, 98.)

A man by his appetite feed[s] and pasture[s] on worldly things that gratify his faculties. When the appetites are extinguished -- or mortified -- he no longer feeds upon the pleasures of these things, but lives in a void and in darkness with respect to his appetites. (St. John of the Cross in CWSJC, 76.)

How strong is our will to succeed, to become. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 20.)

As long as you want to become something, at whatever level, there is bound to be misery and confusion. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 67.)

The future is always more alluring than the present. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 85-6.)

The sacrificing of the present to the future is the insanity of those who are power-mad; and power is evil. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 75.)

Ambition in any form -- for the group, for individual salvation, or for spiritual achievement is action postponed. Desire is ever of the future; the desire to become is inaction in the present. The now has greater significance than the tomorrow. In the now is all time, and to understand the now is to be free of time. Becoming is the continuance of time, or sorrow. Becoming does not contain being. Being is always in the present, and being is the highest form of transformation. Becoming is merely modified continuity, and there is radical transformation only in the present, in being. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 11.)

Self-expansion in any form, whether through wealth or through virtue, is a process of conflict, causing antagonism and confusion. A mind burdened with becoming can never be tranquil, for tranquillity is not a result either of practice or of time. Tranquillity is a state of understanding, and becoming denies this understanding. Becoming creates the sense of time, which is really the postponement of understanding. The "I shall be" is an illusion born of self-importance. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 22.)

As long as you want to become something, at whatever level, there is bound to be misery and confusion. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 67.)

The cause of this inward emptiness is the desire to become; and, do what you will, this emptiness can never be filled. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 54.)

Virtue is the tranquillity of freedom from the craving to be. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1. 34.)

The mind is not quiet when it is acquiring or becoming. All acquisition is conflict; all becoming is a process of isolation. ... Such a mind is a dead mind, it is isolating itself through various forms of resistance, and so it inevitably creates misery for itself and for others. (Krishnamurti, COL, 2, 32.)

Reality has no continuity; it is from moment to moment, ever new, ever fresh. What has continuity can never be creative. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 45.)

What is can be understood only with the fading of tomorrow. The understanding of what is brings about transformation in the immediate present. It is this transformation that is of supreme importance. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 52.)

Karma Yoga - Renouce altogether desire for the worldly, the external, the transient, the sensory, and the pleasing - anything that does not lead to God

It is not by works that one gains the Eternal. Let [dedicated aspirants] give no thought to transient things, but, absorbed in meditation, let him renounce the world. (UPAN, 44.)

Renouncing vain appearances, rejoice in him. (UPAN, 27.)

The Self-Existent made the senses turn outward. Accordingly, man looks toward what is without, and sees not what is within. Rare is he who, longing for immortality, shuts his eyes to what is without and beholds the Self. (UPAN, 20.)

When a man is free from desire, his mind and senses purified, he beholds the glory of the Self and is without sorrow. (UPAN, 18.)

The senses derive from physical objects, physical objects from mind, mind from intellect, intellect from ego, ego from the unmanifested seed, and the unmanifested seed from Brahman -- the Uncaused Cause. (UPAN, 19-20.)

Above the senses is the mind. Above the mind is the intellect. Above the intellect is the ego. Above the ego is the unmanifested seed, the Primal Cause. And verily beyond the unmanifested seed is Brahman, the All-pervading Spirit, the unconditioned. (UPAN, 24. That man is the strongest who can fight his own evil passions, especially he who repels from himself these five vices: avarice, anger, lust, disgrace and discontent. (The Lord Ahuramazda in GZ, 112.)

This is the keeping of the fast with us -- that we fast from committing sin with our eyes and tongue and ears and hands and feet. (Zarathustra in GZ, 99.)

Let this monkey go. The Way is gained by daily loss, Loss upon loss until At last comes rest. (Lao-Tzu, WOL, 101.)

Let the senses go. Let desires go. Let conflicts go. Let ideas go. Let the fiction of life and death go. Just remain in the center, watching. And then forget that you are there. (Lao-Tzu in HHC, 13.)

All created things perish -- he who knows and sees this is at peace though in a world of pain; this is the way of purity. (Buddha in TCB, 66.)

These pleasures which are gained and kept by toil, -- which after deceiving leave you and return whence they came -- these pleasures which are but borrowed for a time, what man of self-control, if he is wise, would delight in them? (Buddha in BMT, 114.)

Even if they enjoy them men are not satisfied, like dogs famishing with hunger over a bone, -- what man of self-control could find satisfaction in these pleasures, which are like a skeleton composed of dry bones? (Buddha in BMT, 115.)

So long as the brethren shall not come to a stop on their way to [Nirvana] because they have attained to any lesser thing [such as riches or power] -- so long may the brethren be expected not to decline but to prosper. (Buddha in CC, 87.)

The senses are said to be higher than the sense-objects. The mind is higher than the senses. The intelligent will is higher than the mind. What is higher than the intelligent will? The Atman Itself. (Sri Krishna in BG, 49.)

The ignorant, in their delusion, identify Atman with the gunas. They become tied to the senses and the action of the senses. (Sri Krishna in BG, 56.)

Feelings of hot and cold, pleasure and pain, are caused by the contact of the senses with their objects. They come and go, never lasting long. You must accept them. (Sri Krishna in BG, 36.)

The attraction and aversion which the senses feel for different objects are natural. But you must not give way to such feelings; they are obstacles. (Sri Krishna in BG, 48.)

You must first control your senses, then kill this evil thing (1) which obstructs discriminative knowledge and realization of the Atman. (Sri Krishna in BG, 49.)

(1) Lust

Renounce all your desires, for ever. They spring from wilfulness. Use your discrimination to restrain the whole pack of the scattering senses. (Sri Krishna in BG, 66.)

Devotees enter into Him when the bonds of their desires are broken. To reach this goal, they practice control of the passions. (Sri Krishna in BG, 76.)

For when a man loses attachment to sense-objects and to action, when he renounces lustful anxiety and anxious lust, then he is said to have climbed to the height of union with Brahman. (Sri Krishna in BG, 63.)

The wind turns a ship From its course upon the waters: The wandering winds of the senses Cast man's mind adrift And turn his better judgment from its course. (Sri Krishna in BG, 43.)

When a man lacks lust and hatred, His renunciation does not waver. (Sri Krishna in BG, 56.)

Let man be the master Of every impulse br> Lust-begotten Or fathered by anger: Thus he finds Brahman, Thus he is happy. (Sri Krishna in BG, 60.)

When he has no lust, no hatred, A man walks safely among the things of lust and hatred. To obey the Atman (1) Is his peaceful joy; Sorrow melts into that clear peace: His quiet mind Is soon established in peace. (Sri Krishna in BG, 43.)

(1) The Self.

The seer knows peace... He lives without craving: Free from ego, free from pride. This is the state of enlightenment in Brahman: A man does not fall back from it Into delusion. Even at the moment of death He is alive in that enlightenment: Brahman and he are one. (Sri Krishna in BG, 43-4.)

When the bonds [of desire] are broken His illumined heart Beats in Brahman. (Sri Krishna in BG, 53.)

With his heart serene and fearless, Firm in his vow of renunciation, Holding the mind from its restless roaming, Now let [the aspirant] struggle to reach my oneness, Ever-absorbed, his eyes on me always, His prize, his purpose. (Sri Krishna in BG, 65.)

Utterly quiet, Made clean of passion, The mind of the yogi Knows that Brahman, His bliss is highest. (Sri Krishna in BG, 67.)

Holding the intellect, Holding the mind fast, He who seeks freedom. Thrusts fear aside, Thrusts aside anger And puts off desire: Truly that man Is made free for ever. (Sri Krishna in BG, 62.)

The seer knows peace... He lives without craving: Free from ego, free from pride. This is the state of enlightenment in Brahman: A man does not fall back from it Into delusion. Even at the moment of death He is alive in that enlightenment: Brahman and he are one. (Sri Krishna in BG, 43-4.)

My children, if you want to practise yoga, (1) you must remove all attachment from your hearts. ... Give up all desires. But if you cannot do this then cultivate a desire for liberation. The desire for liberation destroys all other desires. (Dattatreya in AG, xx.)

(1) The aim of yoga is union with God. "Yoga" means "union."

Sensuality leads to misery and bondage, while spirituality leads to happiness and liberation. (Dattatreya in AG, xx.)

Liberation originates from yoga, and yoga from discriminatory knowledge, discriminatory knowledge from misery, and misery from attachment. Thus the man who seeks liberation must shun all forms of attachment. Non-attachment begets happiness. And as non-attachment arises from discrimination, so the life stream of unitive knowledge is non-attachment. (Dattatreya in AG, xxii-xxiii.)

The soul of every man does possess the power of learning the truth and the organ to see it with; and that, just as one might have to turn the whole body round in order that the eye should see light instead of darkness, so the entire soul must be turned away from this changing world, until its eye can bear to contemplate reality and that supreme splendour which we have called the Good. Hence there may well be an art whose aim would be to effect this very thing, the conversion of the soul, in the readiest way; not to put the power of sight into the soul's eye, which already has it, but to ensure that, instead of looking in the wrong direction, it is turned the way it ought to be. (Socrates in REP, 232.)

Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for the meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed. (Jesus in John 6:27.)

Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal. But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. (Jesus in Matthew 6:19-21.)

Verily I say unto you, That a rich man (1) shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. (Jesus in Matthew 19:23-4.)

(1) That is, a man "rich" in attachments to possessions.

Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth. (Jesus in Luke 12:15.)

Whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple. (Luke 14:33.)

For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? (Jesus in Matthew 16:26.)

I have overcome the world. (Jesus in John 16:33.)

Purify your soul from all undue hope and fear about earthly things, mortify your body, deny self - affections as well as appetites -- and the inner eye will begin to exercise its clear and solemn vision. (Plotinus in CC, 122.)

Only those reach [the Good] who rise to the intelligible realm, face it fully, stripped of the muddy vesture with which they were clothed in their descent ... and enter in nakedness, having cast off in the ascent all that is alien to the divine. (Plotinus in EP, 40.)

True Wealth is shrouded in Shadows called Possessions and cannot be gained until they are scattered. (Anon., SAO, 37.)

But now as we climb from the last things up to the most primary we deny all things so that we may unhiddenly know that unknowing which itself is hidden from all those possessed of knowing amid all beings, so that we may see above being that darkness concealed from all the light among beings. (Pseudo-Dionysius in CWPD, 138.)

For this would be really to see and to know: to praise the Transcendent One in a transcending way, namely through the denial of all beings. (Pseudo-Dionysius in CWPD, 138.)

The union of divinized minds with the Light beyond all deity occurs in the cessation of all intelligent activity, the godlike unified minds ... praise it most appropriately through the denial of all beings. Truly and supernaturally enlightened after this blessed union, they discover that although it is the cause of everything, it is not a thing since it transcends all things in a manner beyond being. ... It is at a total remove from every condition, movement, life, imagination, conjecture, name, discourse, thought, conception, being, rest, dwelling, unity, limit, infinity, the totality of existence. ... It is there at the centre of everything and everything has it for a destiny. It is there "before all things and in it all things hold together." Because it is there the world has come to be and exists. All things long for it. The intelligent and rational long for it by way of knowledge, the lower strata by way of perception, the remainder by way of the stirrings of being alive and in whatever fashion befits their condition. (Pseudo-Dionysius in CWPD, 54.)

All phenomena are empty. They contain nothing worth desiring. (Bodhidharma, ZTB, 2.)

The wise wake up [from desiring and seeking]. They choose reason over custom. They fix their minds on the sublime and let their bodies change with the season. (Bodhidharma, ZTB, 2.)

Once you stop clinging and let things be, you'll be free, even of birth and death. (Bodhidharma in ZTB 20.)

All things -- good or bad, beautiful or ugly -- should be treated as void. (Hui Neng in SHN, 44.)

To detach the mind from all objective things by continually seeing their imperfection, and to direct it steadfastly toward Brahman, its goal -- this is called tranquillity. (Shankara in CJD, 35.)

If you really desire liberation, hold the objects of sense-enjoyment at a distance, like poison; and keep drinking in with delight such virtues as contentment, compassion, forgiveness, straight-forwardness, tranquillity and self-control, as if they were nectar. (Shankara in CJD, 44.)

True mental poise consists in not letting the mind react to external stimuli. (Shankara in CJD, 36.)

To detach both kinds of sense-organs -- those of perception and those of action -- from objective things, and to withdraw them to rest in their respective centers -- this is called self-control. (Shankara in CJD, 35-6.)

When renunciation and the longing for liberation are present to an intense degree within a man, then the practice of tranquillity and the other virtues will bear fruit and lead to the goal. (Shankara in CJD, 36.)

He who has completely overcome attachment is ready for the state of liberation. (Shankara in CJD, 45.)

The seers who have overcome [attachment] go to that high dwelling place of [God]. (Shankara in CJD, 45.)

When in the crucible of abstinence [man] is purged from carnal passions he attains to the highest, and in place of being a slave to lust and anger becomes endued [sic] with angelic qualities. Attaining that state, he finds his heaven in the contemplation of Eternal Beauty, and no longer in fleshly delights. (Al-Ghazzali, AH, 17.)

The spirit possesses God essentially in naked nature, and God the spirit. (John Ruusbroec in PP, 12.)

Without hindrance from sensible images a person can turn within as often as he wishes and as often as he thinks of his God. In other words, a person must be unattached to pleasure and pain, gain and loss, exaltation and humiliation, and joy and fear, just as he must also not be bound to any creature. (John Ruusbroec in JR, 75-6.)

Good food, strong wine, and long sleep - whoever is interested in these things should not attempt to win Wisdom's (1) love. (Blessed Henry SUSO, HSU, 68.)

(1) The Holy Spirit.

People who are successful in the breakthrough, which one must anticipate by withdrawing from oneself and all things ... such people's minds and hearts are so completely lost in God that they somehow have no consciousness of self except by perceiving self and all things in their first origin. (Blessed Henry SUSO, HSU, 130.)

In order to love and have God who is uncreated, we must have knowledge of the smallness of creatures and empty ourselves of all that is created. (Julian of Norwich in MJN, 26.)

Unburden [yourself] of all earthly things, avoid spiritual obstacles, and live in that complete nakedness and freedom of spirit necessary for divine union. (St. John of the Cross in CWSJC, 68.)

To undertake the journey to God the heart must be burned and purified of all creatures with the fire of divine love. (St. John of the Cross in CWSJC, 75.)

To reach satisfaction in all desire its possession in nothing. To come to the knowledge of all desire the knowledge of nothing. To come to possess all desire the possession of nothing. To arrive at being all desire to be nothing. (St. John of the Cross in CWSJC, 67.)

It is ... plain that no distinct object whatever that pleases the will can be God; and for that reason, if it is to be united with Him, it must empty itself, cast away every disorderly affection of the desire, every satisfaction it may distinctly have, high and low, temporal and spiritual. so that, purified and cleansed from all unruly satisfactions, joys and desires, it may be wholly occupied, with all its affections, in loving God. (St. John of the Cross in CC, 150-1.)

We are not discussing the mere lack of things; this lack will not divest the soul, if it craves for all these objects. We are dealing with the denudation of the soul's appetites and gratifications; this is what leaves it free and empty of all things, even though it possesses them. Since the things of the world cannot enter the soul, they are not in themselves an encumbrance or harm to it; rather, it is the will and appetite dwelling within it that causes the damage. (St. John of the Cross in CWSJC, 71.)

All consists in one hearty renunciation of everything which we are sensible does not lead to God. (Attributed to Brother Lawrence, PPG, 18.)

Beyond the independence of a little sum laid aside for burial money, and of a few clapboards around and shingles overhead on a lot of American soil owned and the easy dollars that supply the year's plain clothing and meals, the melancholy prudence of the abandonment of such a great being as a man is to the toss and pallor of years of money making with all their scorching days and nights ... is the great fraud upon modern civilization. (Walt Whitman in CC, 88.)

Men who have the Cosmic Sense give up everything for it -- this whole volume is proof of it. (Bucke, CC, 105.)

How can one attain yoga? By completely renouncing attachment to worldly things. The mind must be pure and without blemish, like the telegraph wire that has no defect. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 229.)

Among men, God manifests Himself more clearly in those devotees ... who have no desire to enjoy [the objects of lust and greed]. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 321.)

The truth is that you cannot attain God if you have even a trace of desire. Subtle is the way of dharma. If you are trying to thread a needle, you will not succeed if the thread has even a slight fibre sticking out. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 769.)

One succeeds if one develops a strong spirit of renunciation. Give up at once, with determination, what you know to be unreal. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 246.)

A true devotee has no desire. He does not care for money. Money comes to him of itself. The Gita describes such a devotee as "content with what comes to him without effort." A good Brahmin, without any personal motive, can accept food even from the house of an untouchable. He does not desire it; it comes of its own accord. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 336.)

One can realize God through intense renunciation. But the soul must be restless for Him, as restless as one feels for a breath of air when one's head is pressed under water. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 680.)

One must not cherish any desire whatever. The devotion of a man who has any desire is selfish. But desireless devotion is love for its own sake. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 375.)

If you want to realize God, then you must cultivate intense dispassion. You must renounce immediately what you feel to be standing in your way. You should not put it off until the future. [Lust and greed] is the obstruction. The mind must be withdrawn from it. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 750.)

Renounce everything and call on God. He alone is real; all else is illusory. Without the realization of God everything is futile. This is the great secret. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 95.)

One receives the grace of God by subduing the passions -- lust, anger, and greed. Then one sees God. I tried many things in order to conquer lust. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 161. Sense pleasures appear more and more tasteless as love for God grows. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 203.)

[The rishis of old] kept their minds aloof from the objects of sight, hearing, touch, and other things of a worldly nature. Only thus did they realize Brahman as their own inner consciousness. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 103.)

To have conquered desire is to have learned how to use and control the self. (Ascended Master, probably the Master Hilarion, channelling through Mabel Collins, LOP, 22.)

Seek [the way] by testing all experience; and remember that when I say this I do not say: "Yield to the seductions of sense in order to know it." Before you have become an occultist you may do this; but not afterwards. When you have chosen and entered the Path you cannot yield to these seductions without shame. Yet you can experience them without horror; can weigh, observe, and test them, and wait with confidence for the hour when they shall affect you no longer. But do not condemn the man that yields; stretch out your hand to him as a brother pilgrim whose feet have become heavy with mire. Remember, O disciple, that great though the gulf may be between the good man and the sinner it is greater between the good man and the man who has attained knowledge; it is immeasurable between the good man and the one on the threshold of divinity. therefore be wary lest too soon you fancy yourself a thing apart from the mass. (Ascended Master, probably the Master Hilarion, channelling through Mabel Collins, LOP, 15-6.)

One receives the grace of God by subduing the passions -- lust, anger, and greed. Then one sees God. I tried many things in order to conquer lust. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 161.)

God teaches [the seeker] that if the mind can be detached from the outside world, then no evil will exist for him. Matter is the cause of all misery, of all misfortune. The less we have to do with matter, the better it is for us. (Ramakrishnananda, GDI, 36.)

Conserve your powers. Be like the capacious ocean, absorbing quietly all the tributary rivers of the senses. (Sri Yukteswar Giri in Paramahansa Yogananda, AY, 126.)

Roam in the world as a lion of self-control; don't let the frogs of self-weakness kick you around. (Sri Yukteswar Giri in Paramahansa Yogananda, AY, 126.)

Daily renewed sense yearnings sap your inner peace; they are like openings in a reservoir that permit vital waters to be wasted in the desert soil of materialism. The forceful, activating impulse of wrong desire is the greatest enemy to the happiness of man. (Sri Yukteswar Giri in Paramahansa Yogananda, AY, 126.)

Our renunciation must obviously be an inward renunciation; especially and above all, a renunciation of the attachment and the craving of desire in the senses and the heart, of self-will in the thought and action and of egoism in the centre of the consciousness. For these things are the three knots by which we are bound to our lower nature and if we can renounce these utterly, there is nothing else that can bind us. (Sri Aurobindo, SOY, 314.)

No knowledge can be true knowledge which subjects itself to the senses or uses them otherwise than as first indices whose data have to be constantly corrected and overpassed. The beginning of Science is the examination of the world-force that underlie its apparent workings such as our senses represent them to be; the beginning of philosophy is the examination of the principles of things which the senses mistranslate to us; the beginning of spiritual knowledge is the refusal to accept the limitations of the sense-life or to take the visible and sensible as anything more than phenomenon [sic] of the Reality. (Sri Aurobindo, SOY, 299.)

Self-control is the very core of the Vedantic discipline; without it no progress is possible in spiritual life, nor any success in meditation. By means of self-control one empties the mind, as it were, of its worldly contents, its transient desires and passions, and then, through contemplation, fills up the void with the spirit of Truth. The attempt to meditate without practising self-control is as futile as to irrigate a field without at first closing the big rat-holes through which the water leaks away. The beginning of Science is the examination of the world-force that underlie its apparent workings such as our senses represent them to be; the beginning of philosophy is the examination of the principles of things which the senses mistranslate to us; the beginning of spiritual knowledge is the refusal to accept the limitations of the sense-life or to take the visible and sensible as anything more than phenomenon [sic] of the Reality. (Sri Aurobindo, SOY, 299.)

Attachment and desire must be utterly cast out; there is nothing in the world to which we must be attached, not wealth nor poverty, nor joy nor suffering, nor life nor death, nor greatness nor littleness, nor vice nor virtue, nor friend, nor wife, nor children, nor country, nor our work and mission, nor heaven nor earth, nor all that is within them or beyond them. And this does not mean that there is nothing at all that we shall love, nothing in which we shall take delight; for attachment is egoism in love and not love itself, desire is limitation and insecurity in a hunger for pleasure and satisfaction and not the seeking after the divine delight in things. A universal love we must have, calm and eternally intense beyond the brief vehemence of the most violent passion; a delight in things rooted in a delight in God that does not adhere to their forms but to that which they conceal in themselves and that embraces the universe without being caught in its meshes. (Sri Aurobindo, SOY, 314-5.)

"The divine order arranges our future more wisely than any insurance company." The [master Bhaduri's] concluding words were the realized creed of his faith. "The world is full of uneasy believers in an outward security. Their bitter thoughts are like scars in their foreheads. The One who gave us air and milk from our first breath knows how to provide day by day for His devotees." (Paramahansa Yogananda, AY, 61-2.)

Attention is the conductor of our life currents and consciousness. Those who greedily indulge in the pleasures of the senses of touch, smell, taste, sound, and sight find the searchlights of their consciousness and Life Force turned outwards towards matter, but when, by self-control and meditation, the attention is focused on the point between the eyebrows in the spiritual sensorium, then the Life Force and consciousness steadily begin to throw a revealing light over the Christ Consciousness Omnipresent in all finite Creation. (Paramahansa Yogananda, SCC, 1, 86.)

Although the force of desires is strong, the potency of Divine Will is stronger. The Will is in you and will work through you, if you permit it, and if you refuse to let worldly motivations weave nets of incarnations around you. (Paramahansa Yogananda, MEQ, 459.)

How difficult it is for the man of possessions to be free! It is a great hardship for a rich man to put aside his wealth. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 230.)

You must give up all feeling of possession. Karma may take from you the things which you like best -- even the people whom you love most. Even then you must be cheerful -- ready to part with anything and everything. Often the Master needs to pour out His strength upon others through His servant; He cannot do that if the servant yields to depression. So cheerfulness must be the rule. (Krishnamurti, AFM, 57-8.)

Ownership denies love, does it not? To own is to be secure; possession is defence, making oneself invulnerable. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 12.)

The rich have a peculiar atmosphere of their own. However cultured, unobtrusive, ancient and polished, the rich have an impenetrable and assured aloofness, that inviolable certainty and hardness that is difficult to break down. ... Their god is the god of their gold. .. For the rich as for the poor, it is extremely difficult to find reality. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 21-2.)

There can be freedom from knowledge only when the process of gathering, the motive of accumulation, is understood. The desire to store up is the desire to be secure, to be certain. This desire for certainty through identification, through condemnation and justification, is the cause of fear, which destroys all communion. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 26-7.)

We live by sensations; we are sensations. Deprive us of sensations, pleasurable or painful, and we are not. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 76.)

The repetition of sensations gives the appearance of a fresh experience, but sensations can never be new. The search of the new does not lie in repetitive sensations. The new comes into being only when there is experiencing; and experiencing is possible only when the urge and pursuit of sensation have ceased. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 62.)

Experience is not reality. Reality cannot be experienced. It is. If the experiencer thinks he experiences reality, then he knows only illusion. ... Experience cannot meet reality. Experience shapes knowledge, and knowledge bends experience; they must both cease for reality to be. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 74.)

The mind must be utterly empty to receive; but the craving to be empty in order to receive is a deep-seated impediment, and this also must be understood completely, not at any particular level. The craving to experience must wholly cease, which happens only when the experiencer is not nourishing himself on experiences and their memories. (Krishnamurti, COL, 1, 69.)

You must be completely denuded, without the weight of the past or the enticement of a hopeful future -- which does not mean despair. If you are in despair, there is no emptiness, no nakedness. You cannot 'do' anything. You can and must be still, without any hope, longing, or desire; but you cannot determine to be still, suppressing all noise, for in that very effort there is noise. Silence is not the opposite of noise. (Krishnamurti in COL, 2, 115.)

"Sir, you are taking everything away from one, and nothing is left. But that may be the new thing." It is. (Krishnamurti, COL, 3, 88.)

Dama or self-control [means] restraining the organs of both perception and action from their respective objects, and keeping them under control. The organs of perception are those of tasting, hearing, smelling, seeing, and touching. The organs of action are those of speaking, grasping, moving about, procreating, and evacuating. Endowed with this virtue, the aspirant engages only in hearing about Brahman, reasoning about It, and meditating upon It. (Nikhilananda, "Introduction" to Shankara, SK, 43.)

Self-control should be distinguished from the practice of mortification and meaningless austerities. .... Self-control really means the development of will-power and also the strengthening of the buddhi, or the determinative faculty, which controls all sense organs. (Nikhilananda, "Introduction" to Shankara, SK, 45-6.)

The practice of 'letting go' is very effective for minds obsessed by compulsive thinking: you simplify your meditation practice down into just two words - 'letting go' - rather than try do develop this practice and then develop that; and achieve this and go into that, and understand this, and read the Suttas, and study the Abhidhamma ... and then learn Pali and Sanskrit ... then the Madhyamika and the Prajna Paramita ... get ordinations in the Hinayana, Mahayana, Vajryana ... write books and become a world renowned authority on Buddhism. Instead of becoming the world's expert on Buddhism and being invited to great International Buddhist Conferences, just 'let go, let go, let go.' I did nothing but this for about two years -- every time I tried to understand or figure things out, I'd say 'let go, let go' until the desire would fade out. So I'm making it very simple for you, to save you from getting caught in incredible amounts of suffering. There's nothing more sorrowful than having to attend International Buddhist Conferences! Some of you might have the desire to become the Buddha of the age, Maitreya, radiating love throughout the world - but, instead, I suggest just being an earthworm, letting go of the desire to radiate love throughout the world. Just be an earthworm who knows only two words - 'let go, let go, let go'. (Ajahn Sumedo, CIT, 43-4.)

This 'letting go' practice is a way of clearing the mind of its obsessions and negativity; use it gently, but with resolution. Meditation is a skilful letting go, deliberately emptying out the mind so we can see the purity of the mind. (Ajahn Sumedo, CIT, 46.)

There is a great momentum of suffering and confusion that every spiritual seeker encounters. It is the momentum of ignorance which manifests as the experience of conflict and confusion and which causes suffering. In order to discover the perspective of Liberation, which alone transcends this entire movement of ignorance and suffering, one needs to let everything end. "Letting everything end" means to stand in the moment completely naked of attachment to any and all ideas, concepts, hopes, preferences, and experiences. Simply put, it means to stop strategizing, controlling, manipulating, and running away from yourself -- and to simply be. Finally you must let everything end and be still. In letting everything end, all seeking and striving stops. All effort to be someone or to find some extraordinary state of being ceases. This ceasing is essential. It is true spiritual maturity. (Adyashanti, "Let Everything End," 1997, downloaded from www.adyashanti.org, 2004.)

This is an invitation to let all seeking end, all striving end, all efforting end, all past identity end, all hopes end, and to discover That which has no beginning or end. This is an invitation to discover eternal, unborn, undying Truth of Being. The Truth of your Being, your own Self. Let the entire movement of becoming end, and discover That which has always been present at the core of your Being. (Adyashanti, "Let Everything End," 1997, downloaded from www.adyashanti.org, 2004.)

The path to awakening and to really being awake - make no mistake about it - the path to awakening has nothing to do with an addition, an accumulation, an attainment. The path to awakening is a destructive process. And anyone who says it isn't is in a pipedream. They have no idea what it is. It tears away our concepts, it tears away our beliefs, it tears away our dogged addiction to all sorts of states, whether those are really wonderful spiritual states or really awful states. It just keeps pulling them away. All our arguments with what, the truth just keeps barreling on through them and it doesn't ask us if we're ready. And when we hold on we feel the tearing. All we're really feeling is our fingernails in the ground as we're getting yanked by reality. We're going there anyway. (Adyashanti, TTT.)

Karma Yoga - Why did God create lust and hatred? - See Sexuality - Lust

Karma Yoga - Dispassion awaits satiety

Dispassion is not possible unless there is satiety through enjoyment. You can easily cajole a small child with candies or toys. But after eating the candies and finishing its play, it cries, "I want to go to my mother." Unless you take the child to its mother, it will throw away the toy and scream at the top of its voice. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 216.)

If you want to realize God, then you must cultivate intense dispassion. You must renounce immediately what you feel to be standing in your way. You should not put it off until the future. [Lust and greed] is the obstruction. The mind must be withdrawn from it. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 750.)

Karma Yoga - Those who seek material reward receive it in this life

Those that desire the life of this world with all its frippery shall be rewarded for their deeds in their own lifetime: nothing shall be denied them. These are the men who in the world to come shall be rewarded with Hell-fire. Fruitless are their deeds, and vain are all their works. (Koran, 131.)

As for the Paradise to come, it shall be theirs who seek neither glory in this world nor evil. The righteous shall have a blessed end. (Koran, 80.)

Whoever seeks the harvest of the world to come, to him will We give in great abundance; and whoever desires the harvest of this world, a share of it shall be his: but in the hereafter he shall have no share of it at all. (Koran, 152.)

Karma Yoga - Control the senses - The proper use of the senses - See The Senses - The solution

Karma Yoga - Control the senses - Without sense control, enlightenment is impossible - See Desire - Experiencing and enlightenment can only arise with the absence of desire

Karma Yoga - Master the self - The Ego - Master it

Karma Yoga - Gain control over the mind

Keep your mind free of divisions and distinctions. When your mind is detached, simple, quiet, then all things can exist in harmony, and you can begin to perceive the subtle truth. (Lao-Tzu in HHC, 14.)

Get control of the mind through spiritual discrimination. Then destroy your elusive enemy, who wears the form of lust. (Sri Krishna in BG, 49.)

Patiently, little by little, a man must free himself from all mental distractions, with the aid of the intelligent will. He must fix his mind upon the Atman, and never think of anything else. No matter where the restless mind wanders, it must be drawn back and made to submit to the Atman only. (Sri Krishna in BG, 66.)

If a yogi has perfect control over his mind, and struggles continually in this way to unite himself with Brahman, he will come at last to the crowning peace of Nirvana, the peace that is in me. (Sri Krishna in BG, 65.)

With a controlled mind and an intellect made pure and tranquil, you must realize the Atman directly, within yourself. (Shankara in CJD, 53.)

Karma Yoga - Give up identification

Identification, surely, is possession, the assertion of ownership; and ownership denies love, does it not? To own is to be secure; possession is defence, making oneself invulnerable. In identification there is resistance, whether gross or subtle; and is there love where there is defence. Love is vulnerable, pliable, receptive; it is the highest form of sensitivity, and identification makes for insensitivity. Identification and love do not go together, for the one destroys the other. ... Identification destroys freedom, and only in freedom can there be the highest form of sensitivity. (Krishnamurti in COL, 1, 12-3.)

To experience, all identification must cease. To experiment, there must be no fear. Fear prevents experience. It is fear that makes for identification -- identification with another, with a group, with an ideology, and so on. (Krishnamurti in COL, 1, 13.)

Karma Yoga - Be even-minded, tranquil, serene - See also Moderation

A man of understanding holdeth his peace. (Proverbs 11:12.)

Feelings of heat and cold, pleasure and pain, are caused by the contact of the senses with their objects. They come and they go, never lasting long. You must accept them. (Sri Krishna in BG, 36.)

Poise your mind in tranquillity. (Sri Krishna in BG, 40.)

Be even-tempered in success and failure; for it is this evenness of temper which is meant by yoga. (Sri Krishna in BG, 40.)

A serene spirit accepts pleasure and pain with an even mind, and is unmoved by either. He alone is worthy of immortality. (Sri Krishna in BG, 36.)

That serene one Absorbed in the Atman Masters his will, He knows no disquiet In heat or in cold, In pain or in pleasure, In honour, dishonour. (Sri Krishna in BG, 64.)

The enlightened, the Brahman-abiding, Calm-hearted, unbewildered, Is neither elated by the pleasant Nor saddened by the unpleasant. (Sri Krishna in BG, 60.)

The restless, busy nature of the world, this, I declare, is the root of pain. Attain that composure of mind which is resting in the peace of immortality. Self is but a heap of composite qualities, and its world is empty like a fantasy. (The Buddha in GB, 60.)

He who has tasted the sweetness of solitude (1) and tranquillity becomes free from fear and free from sin, while he tastes the sweetness of drinking in the law. (The Buddha in TCB, 63.)

(1) Buddha, I believe, means not only physical solitude, but also, and more importantly, the solitude that is a "fasting from things," a detachment from pleasure and things.

Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord. (St. Paul in Hebrews 12:14.)

For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully. For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but, if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God. (I Peter 2:19-20.)

Brahman is ... tranquillity itself. ... He is joy for ever. (Shankara in CJD, 71.)

To detach the mind from all objective things by continually seeing their imperfection, and to direct it steadfastly toward Brahman, its goal -- this is called tranquillity. (Shankara in CJD, 35.)

To endure all kinds of affliction without rebellion, complaint or lament -- this is called forbearance. (Shankara in CJD, 36.)

Seek neither peace nor strife With kith or kin, with friend or foe. O beloved, if thou wouldst attain freedom, Be equal unto all. (Shankara in CJD, 3.)

The unfailing composure of a saint is impressive beyond any sermon. "He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city." [Proverbs 16:32.] (Paramahansa Yogananda, AY, 132.)

A student of Vedanta, like all true philosophers, must cultivate inner calmness. He treads a very difficult path, often compared to the sharp edge of a razor. He must have convictions but should never be swayed by passions. (Nikhilananda, "Introduction" to SK, 43.)

Sama or calmness ... the dwelling of the mind on Brahman (1) [occurs] after it has detached itself from all sense objects through firm knowledge of their inherent defects. (Nikhilananda, "Introduction" to SK, 43.)

(1) God.

Titsika or forbearance [is] the endurance of all afflictions arising from the contact of the senses with their objects. A man practising this discipline does not care to relieve his physical suffering nor does he show any anxiety or grief on its score. By means of this discipline the aspirant remains unagitated by heat and cold, pleasure and pain, love and hate, and the other pairs of opposites. (Nikhilananda, "Introduction" to Shankara, SK, 43-4.)

The Master teaches that it does not matter in the least what happens to a man from the outside; sorrows, troubles, sicknesses, losses -- all these must be as nothing to him, and must not be allowed to affect the calmness of his mind. They are the result of past actions, and when they come you must bear them cheerfully, remembering that all evil is transitory, and that your duty is to remain always joyous and serene. They belong to your previous lives, not to this; you cannot alter them, so it is useless to trouble about them. Think rather of what you are doing now, which will make the events of your next life, for that you can alter. (Krishnamurti, AFM, 48-9.)

Karma Yoga - Examples of strong renunciation and forbearance

The goal of worldly desire, the glittering objects for which all men long, the celestial pleasure they hope to gain by religious rites, the most sought-after of miraculous powers -- all these were within thy grasp. But all these, with firm resolve, thou hast renounced. ... Truly do I believe, O Nachiketa, that for thee the gates of joy stand open. (1) (UPAN, 15-8.)

(1) The King of Death has awarded Nachiketa three boons. Nachiketa asks for his father's comfort, knowledge of the sacrifice that leads to heaven, and knowledge of the truth of life and death.

His attitude is the same toward friend and foe. He is indifferent to honour and insult, heat and cold, pleasure and pain. He is free from attachment. He values praise and blame equally. He can control his speech. He is content with whatever he gets. His home is everywhere and nowhere. (Sri Krishna in BG, 99.)

When a man's heart has reached fulfilment through knowledge and personal experience of the truth of Brahman, he is never again moved by the things of the senses. Earth, stone and gold seem all alike to one who has mastered his senses. (Sri Krishna in BG, 64.)

His mind is dead To the touch of the external: It is alive To the bliss of the Atman. because his heart knows Brahman His happiness is for ever. (Sri Krishna in BG, 60.)

Utterly quiet, Made clean of passion, The mind of the yogi Knows that Brahman, His bliss is highest. (Sri Krishna in BG, 67.)

All passion have I put away, and all Ill will for ever have I rooted out; Illusion utterly has passed from me; Cool am I now. Gone out all fire within. All longings as to this or other life Have I put far from me, as one who hath Beta'en himself to truth, whose heart's at peace, Who, self-subdued, in all things undefiled, Discerns the world's incessant ebb and flow. Burnt up in me is all that doth defile, And rooted out all life's continuance; Slain utterly the cycle of re-birth: Now is there no more coming back to be. (Anonymous bhikshu in TCB, 75.)

King Wei of Chou, having heard of the ability of Chuang-tzu, sent messengers with large gifts to bring him to his court, and promising also that he would make him his chief minister. Chuang-tzu, however, only laughed and said to them: "A thousand ounces of silver are a great gain to me, and to be a high noble and minister is a most honourable position. But have you not seen the victim-ox for the border sacrifice? It is carefully fed for several years, and robed with rich embroidery that it may be fit to enter the Grand Temple. When the time comes for it to do so, it would prefer to be a little pig, but it cannot get to be so. Go away quickly, and do not soil me with your presence. I had rather amuse and enjoy myself in the midst of a filthy ditch than be subject to the rules and restrictions in the court of a sovereign. I have determined never to take office, but prefer the enjoyment of my own free will." (From James Legge: "The Texts of Taoism" presented on http://www.taopage.org/chuangtzu.html, downloaded 17 July 2007.)

Abba Daniel used to say, [Abba Arsenius] lived with us many a long year and every year we used to take him only one basket of bread and when we went to find him the next year we would eat some of that bread." (SDF, 11.)

Abba Daniel used to tell how when Abba Arsenius learned that all the varieties of fruit were ripe he would say, "Bring me some." He would taste a very little of each, just once, giving thanks to God. (SDF, 11.)

Abba Arsenius used to say that one hour's sleep is enough for a monk if he is a good fighter. (SDF, 11.)

Abba Agathon was walking with his disciples. One of them, finding a small green pea on the road, said to the old man, "Father, may I take it?" The old man, looking at him with astonishment, said, "Was it you who put it there?" "No," replied the brother. "How then," continued the old man, "can you take up something which you did not put down?" (SDF, 22.)

I do none harm, I say none harm, I think none harm. And if this be not enough to keep a man alive, in good faith I long not to live. (Thomas More in MFAS,113.)

"Let the thieves play their role. We shall stick to ours. Let them do what they like: it is for us to bear and forbear. Let us not interfere with them." ... Sri Ramakrishna demonstrated through his life the ideal of renunciation to modern man. Once he said: "A man cannot realize God unless he renounces everything mentally. ..." Indeed, those who depend wholly on God are provided with everything they need. (Swami Chetanananda in TLWG, 71.)

One day Mathur [Nath Biswa, Dakshineswar temple proprietor] presented a very expensive shawl to the Master. Sri Ramakrishna cheerfully accepted it, put it on, and walked around the temple garden, showing it off to people like a jubilant boy. He did not forget to mention the price, which was one thousand rupees at the time. But after a short while his mood changed. His discriminating mind started to ponder: "What is there in this shawl? Nothing but sheep's wool. Like everything else it is a modification of matter. It protects one from the cold, no doubt, but this can be done as well by a blanket or a quilt. And like other material things it does not help one to realize God. Rather it makes the owner assume an air of superiority. He thinks himself rich and is proud.' This idea was unbearable to Sri Ramakrishna. Immediately he threw the shawl on the dusty ground and began to trample and spit on it. (Swami Chetanananda in TLWG, 24.)

Once the idea came to me to put on a very expensive robe embroidered with gold and to smoke a silver hubble-bubble. Mathur Babu sent me the new robe and the hubble-bubble. I put on the robe. I also smoked the hubble-bubble in various fashions. Sometimes I smoked it reclining this way, and sometimes that way, sometimes with head up, and sometimes with head down. Then I said to myself, 'O mind, this is what they call smoking a silver hubble-bubble.' Immediately I renounced it. I kept the robe on my body a few minutes longer and then took it off. I began to trample it underfoot and spit on it, saying, 'So this is an expensive robe! But it only increases a man's rajas.' (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in TLWG, 25.)

For countless ages, Indian Sadhus have practised the spiritual disciplines that Swami Turiyananda now embarked upon: to life in solitude, to visit places of pilgrimage, to meditate intensively, to study the scriptures and to reduce the needs of the body to a minimum. Theirs is a life of utter dependence on the Lord as far as food and shelter are concerned. What little food is needed to sustain life is obtained by begging and whatever is given is regarded as coming directly from God. (Swami Ritajananda, ST, 26.)

Sri Maharshi received a blow on the left thigh, whereupon he halted and said, "If you are not satisfied, you may strike me on the other leg also." (Sri Ramana Maharshi's reaction when thieves broke into and robbed his ashram in Subbaraya Karnath, SMSLS, 26-7.)

[An arriving ashram resident] noticed the weal on the left thigh of the Masater. At once he seized an iron bar and sought permission to go in and see what the thieves were doing. But Sri Maharshi checked him: "We are sadhus; we must not give up our dharma. If you go and strike them some may receive fatal injuries, and that will be a matter for which the world will justly blame not the thieves but us. They are only misguided men, blinded by ignorance. But let us note what is right and stick to it. Sometimes your teeth suddenly bite your tongue. Would you knock out the teeth in consequence?" (Subbaraya Karnath, SMSLS, 28.)

My heart (1) burns like fire but my eyes (2) are as cold as dead ashes. (Soyen Shaku, the first Zen teacher to come to America, in ZFZB, 26.)

(1) Seat of devotion. (2) Representing the organs of desire.

[Father's] attitude towards himself was truly Spartan. He never visited the theatre, for instance, but sought his recreation in various spiritual practices and in reading the Bhagavad-Gita. Shunning all luxuries, he would cling to one old pair of shoes until they were useless. His sons bought automobiles after they came into popular use, but father was content with the trolley car for his daily ride to the office. Father was not interested in the accumulation of money for the sake of power. On one occasion, after he had organized the Calcutta Urban Bank, he refused to benefit himself by holding any of its shares. He had simply wished to perform a civic duty in his spare time. Several years after Father had retired on a pension, an accountant from England came to India to examine the books of the Bengal-Nagpur Railway. The amazed investigator discovered that Father had never applied for overdue bonuses. "He did the work of three men!" the accountant told the company. "He has rupees 125,000 ($41,250) owing to him as back compensation." The treasurer sent Father a cheque for that amount. My parent thought so little about the matter that he forgot to mention it to the family. Much later he was questioned by my youngest brother Bishnu, who had noticed the large deposit on a bank statement. "Why be elated by material profit?" Father replied. "The one who pursues a goal of evenmindedness is neither jubilant with gain nor depressed by loss. He knows that man arrives penniless in this world, and departs without a single rupee." (Paramahansa Yogananda on his father, AY, 4-5.)

Karma Yoga - What should not be renounced?

The sages tell us that renunciation means the complete giving-up of all actions which are motivated by desire. And they say that non-attachment means abandonment of the fruits of action. Some philosophers declare that all kinds of action should be given up, because action always contains a certain measure of evil. Others say that acts of sacrifice, almsgiving and austerity should not be given up. Now you shall hear the truth of this matter. Acts of sacrifice, almsgiving and austerity should not be given up: their performance is necessary. For sacrifice, almsgiving and austerity are means of purification to those who rightly understand them. But even these acts must be performed without attachment or regard for their fruits. (Sri Krishna in BG, 120.)

Karma Yoga - Giving up to gain is not renunciation

To give up in order to gain is no renunciation at all. To see the false as false, to see the true in the false, and to see the true as the true -- it is this that sets the mind free. (Krishnamurti, COL, 3, 4.)

Karma Yoga - Renounce the ego, selfishness - See The Ego - Renounce it

Karma Yoga - Renunication - Be content with what comes unsought - See Surrender - Surrender to God and let Him supply your every need; be satisfied with what comes unsought

Karma Yoga - The need for action will be reduced as we near God

But when a man has found delight and satisfaction and peace in the Atman, (1) then he is no longer obliged to perform any kind of action. He has nothing to gain in this world by action, and nothing to lose by refraining from action. He is independent of everybody and everything. (Sri Krishna in BG, 46.)

(1) That is, has attained Self-realization or enlightenment. The "Atman" is the Hindu term for the "Christ" or the Self.

There is gold buried in your heart, (1) but you are not yet aware of it. It is covered with a thin layer of clay. Once you are aware of it, all these activities of yours will lessen. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 108.)

(1) Cf. Jesus's metaphor of a treasure buried in a field. (Matthew 13: 44.)

Let the wise, who have grown tranquil and who practice contemplation of the Atman, (1) give up all worldly activities and struggle to cut the bonds of worldliness. (Shankara in CJD, 34.)

(1) The "Atman" is the Hindu term for the Self or the "Christ." Jesus's metaphors of the pearl of great price, treasure buried in a field, leaven buried in a measure of meal are all meant to convey the same message as Shankara conveys here. The merchant who sells all he has and buys the pearl of great price is the same as the wise man who gives up all wordlly activities and contemplates the Atman.

Such actions as japa (1) and austerity drop away when one spontaneously feels love and attachment for God. Who, indeed, will perform the ceremonies enjoined in the scriptures, when mad with love of God? (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 173.)

(1) Chanting the names of the Lord.

The blossom drops off when the fruit appears. One doesn't have to do one's duty after the attainment of God, nor does one feel like doing it then. ... As you advance nearer and nearer to God, he will reduce your activities little by little. Have no fear. Finish the few duties you have at hand, and then you will have peace. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 114.)

Karma Yoga - The universe will endure until all desire ends - See Desire - Those attached to unfulfilled desires must be born again and again to satisfy them

Karma Yoga - Wisdom and action - see Paths to God - Wisdom and action (Karma)

Knowledge - Can it lead to liberation? - See Intellectuals - Pro: Can reach God - See also Books.


See also Enlightenment - The role of the kundalini

A man's spiritual consciousness is not awakened unless his Kundalini is aroused. The Kundalini dwells in the Muladhara.(1) When it is aroused, it passes along the Sushumna nerve, goes through the centres of Svadhisthana, Manipura,(2) and so on, and at last reaches the head. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 830.)

(1) Or first chakra.
(2) Second and third chakras.

The fourth center of consciousness (anahata) is in the region of the heart. Spiritual awakening comes when the mind rises to this center. At this stage man has a spiritual vision of the Divine Light and is struck with wonder at its beauty and glory. His mind then no longer runs after worldly pleasures. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in Usha, RVW, 25.)

Like the slow creeping of an ant, the Mahavayu rises from centre to centre. When it reaches the Sahasrara one goes into samadhi. One feels the rising of the Great Energy, as though it were the movement of an ant. (Paramahansa Ramakrishna in GSR, 950.)

[The kundalini is] the current of immortal joy. (Da Free John, KOL, Original Edition, 157)