Thursday, September 5, 2013

...the company one keeps

Verse 4.22: He who is satisfied with gain which comes of its own accord, who is free from duality and does not envy, who is steady in both success and failure, is never entangled, although performing actions.

One's desires and ambitions develop according to the company one keeps

For regular readers, you might recognize this phrase. It's one of my favorites and one that I quote often.

Today though, I viewed this phrase in a whole new light which caught me off guard. Ever feel like you've gotten all you can out of something? That you just can't learn anymore? Well...I definitely used to think that about the above mentioned phrase. So you can imagine my surprise when a new insight suddenly came to me.

I always used to think that "the company one keeps" referred to individuals. Reflecting upon the fact that lately I've been experiencing the words of the Gita come to life, suddenly a whole new context to the words "company" unveiled itself:

"The company one keeps is not only limited to the people we associate with; it also includes the books we read and the environments we expose ourselves to."

That's how subtle the soul is. When we are constantly exposed to something, we naturally become affected by it. Reading and writing about working without attachment has become such a constant fixture in my life, that I can't help but think about it more frequently!

I invite all of you to perform an experiment. Make the time for the next five days to absorb yourself in reading about one topic that uplifts you. Perhaps it can be on a quality that you hope to develop or a habit you would like to form. Spend ten minutes reading about it and at the end of the five days, take note of how often you think about it. You might be pleasantly surprised to find that you've already made some positive progress.

1 comment:

  1. I find that the idea of monitoring inputs from things around us is something people often miss. Changing the music you listen too or not allowing yourself to sit there being bombarded with tv is the quick I have found to find some peace. Also this reminds me so much of mantra, you carry that thought, that expression with you until it becomes a part of you and changes you. We are what we eat literally, visually, and, auditorily.