Verse 9: Limitations of Expectations

Summary: We can only demand of things that we know. Hence, to go beyond our past experiences and achieve something really new, we must first learn to keep our mind free of any want while doing our sadhana.

Sadguru Dadasaheb told us that the verses from the ninth chapter of Dnyaneshwari with numbers that are multiple of nine tell us a complete story by themselves. I will now attempt to decipher their meaning.

Verse 9: Avadhara Avade Tesana Dhundharu, Pari Mahateji Na Mirawe Kayi Karu, Amrutachiya Tati Wogaru, Aisi Rasasoy Kaichi.

Translation: If we use all our imagination to make a firefly glow as bright as possible, can it ever surpass the brightness of exploding cosmos? Our tastiest preparation can never equal the taste of the Elixir of life (in the mouth of a dying person).

We try to improve our lot by sustained efforts and also by seeking help from forces that are outside of our control, like God or Guru. We seek their blessings by praying to them and by trying our best to act on their advice. What this means that main intention in our mind when we pray or remember God or Guru is our present (or future) need. This need can be material in nature or it may be progress in our sadhana, or it may even be the benefit of someone else. But the fact remains that the need for the psychological assurance from God or Guru that things around us are going to change for the better drives us to be close to them. And we have a very well defined notion of what better means. Don’t we? Otherwise how did we know that what we have is not enough? Of course, we have our reasons for our definition of what better means. These reasons are based on our very own experiences so that we are absolutely convinced that our choice of what better means is the correct choice for us.

However, what we can wish for is limited by our own past experiences. Hence, even if we get whatever we want, we will still essentially remain at the same level of existence. But we can do much better with our efforts. In fact, the difference between what we can imagine and what can ultimately be true is as striking as the two examples in the verse. With these two examples, Dnyaneshwar Maharaj is telling us to be bold enough to do our sadhana without any intent in our mind. However big our intentions might be, we will still be selling ourselves short, as strikingly short as the examples.

Therefore, right at the outset, we should understand that our sadhana is the goal by itself. Sadhana is not a method by which we are going to achieve something. Do sadhana for its own sake and let nature/god/guru take its course. Then, when you are capable enough, you will be shown the greatest spectacle of your entire cosmos getting dissolved. And your life will start afresh, just as anyone’s would after a sip of amrut, the Elixir of life.

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