Battle of Life
Life, the most mysterious entity in itself. Nobody knows why we are here and what we are going to do next until we unite with its nature.
To understand life and its purpose, we have to understand ourselves. who we are? and what do we want? becomes our purpose in life, as life purposefully does not have any purpose.
If I will ask you what is life? you may be saying different things like my kid is my life, my job is my life but essentially these are just part of your life.
Life is what you have made it or you wish to make it from your desires and external projections of the world. Sometimes these Pravittis are your own, (derived from your previous life karma) and sometimes this is just projection of the external world upon you where you are in today.
Seriously, keep all these theories apart and think for a minute what was the purpose of your life when you were born as an infant? nothing …only eating and sleeping. Now, can you ask yourself? Was life present there when you had no purpose? yes, it was surely there, and that why your heart was throbbing and you were breathing.
And now? you have a purpose to do something and many don’t have it yet or I should say they haven’t found it yet and you ask the question back to life what is the purpose of life?.
Apparently, one thing is quite experiential in this stage called life. whether it has the purpose or you are yet to find. it is full of battles.
Battles between good and bad, between doing and undoing, rest and restlessness, day and night, What is evidently visible is battle and maybe because of this many called the life one.
Warrior Wins the Battle
Who is a warrior, one who just fights or one who fights with discrimination?
Discrimination and distinction are very important faculty of the human mind, and if you do not know to apply them or you just don’t have it, you will be just a fighter in life, not a warrior. discrimination is important to filter between our needs and desires, between good and bad, or to just understand why we are doing what we are doing, discrimination is a quality of human intellect that can filter the noise.
The same has been mentioned in The Holy Gita in verse 1. For many of us, verse 1 just looks like an inquiry but it has a very deep intuitive and inherent meaning. which is very easy to apply in the battle of life now (earlier Kurukshetra) and survive like a warrior(one who is a fighter with distinction).
What Verse1 of Holy Gita Says
धर्मक्षेत्रे कुरुक्षेत्रे समवेता युयुत्सवः |
मामकाः पाण्डवाश्चैव किमकुर्वत सञ्जय ||1||
Roughly this translates into
Dhritarashtra said; dharma-kṣhetre (the land of dharma); kuru-kṣhetre — at Kurukshetra; samavetāḥ — having gathered; yuyutsavaḥ — desiring to fight; māmakāḥ — my sons; pāṇḍavāḥ — the sons of Pandu; cha — and; eva — certainly; kim — what; akurvata — did they do; sañjaya — Sanjay
Here you should note importantly Vyasa had used word किमकुर्वत “what did they do” but not what they are doing. this means he was pointing to the past and it was not a live commentary.
How could this information be useful in daily life when it just looks like an inquiry from the translation of the verse. It has deep meaning inherent in this verse of Gita which is pointing towards introspection at the end of the day “what did they do” but “not what they are doing”, so Vyasa is saying that Dhritarashtra asked about an event which has happened in past to Sanjay.
Why to Sanjay only, he asked. To understand this we have to learn what Sanjay means. Sanjay (because Sanjay could see far from his location of presence) is one who has the divine intuitive intellect and who can see the events unbiased from a distant location. In the modern world or practical sense introspection can be called Sanjay.
But this process of introspection should be unbiased and discriminative to define what had happened in the battlefield of kuru-kṣhetre(In modern times your life which is full of battles between good and bad, desire and renunciation etc…)
I dare you to challenge, think about something and the battle of yes and no will start. But why? because in this nature everything you see is dual. if it is good, there will be bad and if it is night there will be a day and the purpose of the whole battle is to realize that they both (whatever is dual in the material plane) are the one and same.
It is just delusion we experience each day. when during the night, the sun sets in the west but there is day somewhere else in the same world. The sun does not disappear from this world during the night it just sets for you for your world( your desires, your “Vrittis”, and your created world based on the purpose you gave it to life). this is an illusion or Maya which you have to conquer as a warrior at the end of each day you live on this earth.
So, A warrior who sees life with his power of discrimination and intuitive distinctive intellect who is unbiased should Introspect (Sanjay as per the Gita) at the end of the day about who wins the battle for the day, your good side or bad side. The battle of Kurukshetra is eternal and happening daily inside us.
Winning a Series of Action
Winning is an act that happens when a certain series of actions are appropriately taken. But, what should be the take home at the end of the day as a result of such introspection. won’t it make it insane if we are full of ignorance? don’t we go into depression if we see that during the whole day we could hardly win battles but have lost more?
No, it does not work like this, the whole purpose of introspection is to see unbiasedly what did we do in the battlefield of life today. In total how many battles we won and how many lost? this will be called take home for the day you are doing introspection.
I would like to make one distinction here. For example, In a day you did 7 good things (means you followed the divine intellect, you were clear why you are doing it with the power of discrimination but not just out of desires and in the control of blind mind) and one bad thing happened on that day. After introspection generally due to “Dwesh”(a repetitive tendency to think that something shouldn’t have happened ), we may slip into the experience of the bad day(due to illusion or desire to even do better), even if we won 7 battles during that particular day.
This experience may force you to think that you had a bad day and not only this you were blunderous at the end of the day. so what did you carry forward to the next day is guilt and repent.
The purpose of introspection is not to feel you guilty or repent but to see and improve. If you will carry some impression back home to the next day it means your process of introspection is not unbiased. you have to just witness what did you do during the day as Sanjay did for Dhritarashtra.
Each battle during the day is an entity in itself and can be seen introspectively to witness the truth of the moment during that battle independently. At the end of the day, all battles you won and lost will make another entity as day.
Hence after introspection, you just need to remember who(which side) won the battle for the day, blind mind, or divine intellect? (if the number of winning battles is more than lost one you followed the path of dharma or in other words you lived your life on a positive note and your senses were not driving you completely, Similarly vice-versa will be true).
To summarize, if you win more battles (as an independent entity) during the day and lost some but less than your won ones, you were a warrior for the day. Do analysis using introspection about why you lost some and plan for the next day. This is what warriors did in the battlefield of Kurukshetra and in the battle of life you are ought to follow, this is what the inherent meaning of verse 1 of Gita as per my limited knowledge of this subject.
May you choose to be a warrior, a real one with discrimination but not just a fighter against your ill wills and desires generated by uncontrolled senses.
I am grateful to Lord Narayana and divine powers to inspire me to write on this topic with my very limited knowledge of this vast subject. Hopefully, you will receive divine lesson shared by lord Krishna in the holy book of Gita and will lighten up your life with the grace of God and will choose to shine eternally.