Application - that is what 'Workings-days' are about!
VEDANTA IN ACTION.
This is the title of a publication from CM which, whilst it of course has items by Gurudev, also includes selections of writing from other well-esteemed Gurus from the Vedantic tradition as well as leading businessmen. Its focus is the working life. We shall be exploring these essays for the next few weeks on Workings-day as, clearly, they pertain directly to the premise of this section of AVBlog! As ever, you encouraged to read back over previous posts, to ensure full benefit.
Part 1; Vedanta in Management.
The Secrets to Profit (Gurudev) - an excerpt from a talk given 4/16/1980 to the AGM of the Bombay Industries Assocn.
Industrial executives cannot understand why, in spite of best efforts, deep planning and great expenditure of energy, the economy is not growing as it should. It is a labour pain with constant mental suffering and tension - the kind of tension which brings sleeplessness, high blood pressure and heart trouble. These are the complaints of modern industrialists. We can explain that these symptoms are due to the tensions, stresses and strains of the industrial and technological age. We may look for biological causes for these illnesses, but the root cause is mental. The body is after all only a tool, a tool that is wielded by the technician behind it. The one who is wielding the tool is the mind, your personality. The tool is necessary, but the tool itself cannot act. The tool's performance depends upon the knowledge and ability of the technician. It is not our body, but the mind and intellect that is acting in us. When the mind is bright and alert, the actions are spectacular; but when the mind is exhausted, dissipated, moody or sorrowful it drags laboriously through its work.
The situation today seems to be that even though we are sincerely trying to work well, the quality of our performance is dull. There is no vibrancy. There is no definite goal in our personal activity and, thus, the mind feels exhausted and worn out. This emotional and intellectual exhaustion decreases our physical capacity and brings about a sudden depletion that results in inefficiency and incompetence to face our challenges in life.
This mental and physical debility, though called the problem of modern man, is not new in the history of mankind. In fact, this same problem, along with its solution, was discussed in the Bhagavad Gita. A typical industrialist of today is equivalent to the troubled and incompetent Arjuna when he first faced the opposing forces. We may define our difficulties differently - ours may be that the bank is not releasing enough funds, or that the government is exerting pressure, or that labour is not cooperating. Arjuna may not have had the same specific problems, but the great challenge of the Mahaabhaarata war held similar conundrums.
In such situations, we are helpless; we are faced with a challenge that we would like to avoid, but that we are forced to meet. Arjuna also, in spite of his efforts, could do nothing to persuade his own cousins not to wage war. An inevitable challenge was placed before him and he was forced to meet it. The challenge appeared to him as futile as breaking a granite wall with his head! In such a situation, any intelligent man would be tempted to think "Why trouble about ? Let me retire from here."
The cause of such anxiety is very subtle and you may not even be aware of it. All worries are due to the psychologically selfish notion that 'I will work only for my family, I will have nothing to do with the world.' Only if you can understand that you industrialists are a rare few, gifted with the ability to produce wealth for the society or nation and that you have been doing it successfully, wil you have the joy of doing it on a larger and larger scale - nor for yourself but for others.
That attitude is not yet developed. We still have a micro-vision. We still feel, 'Why should I exert myself? Why should I sweat for others? I will work only for myself.' When this mood overtakes us we think, 'Why not run a simple, quiet shop?' or 'Why not a small restaurant?' or 'Why not just sell something on the roadside - even if I sell popcorn I can live comfortably; why have I entered industry and become crushed by the very machinery I created?'
This doubt rises in us because of a lack of values and understanding and, above all, a lack of vision. Please think!