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Adapt, Adjust, Accomodate

by Swami Sivananda

Bear insult. Bear injury. This is the essence of all Sadhana. This is the most important Sadhana.

Forgive those who slander or speak ill of you. Do not harm any one who injures you. If anybody from aversion speaks disparagingly of you, greet him courteously without minding those disagreeable words.

Wrath is the daughter of ignorance, the sister of jealousy and the mother of hard-heartedness.

With boldness, manliness and self-reliance, combine humility, softness of speech and behaviour and self-denial. Be ready to serve others. Put up with provocation and abuse without retaliation. Remove all harshness and rudeness from your nature. Courtesy and politeness must become part of your very nature.

While coming in contact with Raga, Dvesha, lust, anger and greed, we have to see that the friction does not ignite us. Let us always keep handy the cooling balm of Bhagavan's Divine Name and His reflection.

Do not argue much. Speak only measured words. If anyone abuses or insults, keep quiet. Identify yourself with the Atman. Atman is the same in all. It can never be hurt or be insulted.

Watch your thoughts, words and actions very carefully. Know the power of words and use them cautiously. Respect all. Speak sweet measured words. Be kind. Cultivate patience, love and humility. Enquire 'Who am I?'


Be serene and tranquil under all circumstances. Cultivate this virtue, Shama (serenity), again and again through constant and strenuous endeavour. Serenity is like a rock; waves of irritation may dash on it, but cannot affect it. Meditate daily on the ever-tranquil Atman or the Eternal which is unchanging. You will attain this sublime virtue gradually. The divine light will descend only on a calm mind. An aspirant with a calm mind only can enter into deep meditation and Nirvikalpa Samadhi. He alone can practice Nishkama or selfless Karma Yoga.

Each Sadhaka should bear in mind that divine life is to be lived in small details. If you are divine in small details, you can be divine in big things. Unless you are careful in your day-to-day life and mould your life in accordance with your idealism, it cannot bear fruit.

Doubt or uncertainty is a great obstacle in the path of Self-realisation. It bars the spiritual progress. This must be removed by Satsanga, study of religious books, Vichara and reasoning. It will again and again raise its head to mislead the aspirant. It should be killed beyond resurrection by certainty of conviction and firm unshakable faith based on reasoning.

Doubt is your great enemy. Doubt causes restlessness of mind. Destroy all doubts through Vichara and Jnana.

Introspect regularly. Practise self-examination for ten minutes before you go to bed. Sit comfortably on a chair. Close your eyes. Think of all actions-good and bad-that you did during the course of the day. Think of all the mistakes that you committed consciously or unconsciously.

A man, who has no life of introspection, whose mind is of outgoing tendencies, cannot find out his own mistakes. The self-conceit acts as a veil and blurs the mental vision. If an aspirant wants to grow, he must admit his defects when they are pointed out by others. He must try his level best to eradicate them and must thank the man who has pointed out his defects. Then he can grow in spirituality.

Do not brood over your past mistakes and failures as this will only fill your mind with grief, regret and depression. Do not repeat them in future. Be cautious. Just think of the causes which led to your failures and try to remove them in future. Strengthen yourself with new vigour and virtues. Develop slowly your will-power.

Every temptation that is resisted, every evil thought that is curbed, every desire that is subdued, every bitter word that is withheld, every noble aspiration that is encouraged, every sublime thought that is cultivated, adds to the development of will-force, good character and attainment of eternal bliss and immortality.

Subconscious life is more powerful than your ordinary life of objective consciousness. Beneath your conscious life there is a very wide region of subconscious life. The subconscious life can modify and influence your conscious life. Through the practice of Yoga you can modify, control and influence the subconscious depths. All habits are imbedded in subconscious.

The mind is a product of experience. It is the result of past thinking and is modified by present thinking.

From experience you get Samskara, from Samskara you get Vasana, from Vasana you get Vritti. Then imagination (Kalpana) makes the Vritti into a desire (Iccha). Ego attaches itself to the desire and it becomes then an urge (Trishna). Then you are forced to do Cheshta or action to fulfil the desire. Action gives rise to experience and so the cycle is repeated.

Samskaras or impressions you have created during your Sadhana period within a closed room, will be wiped out if you are not careful or vigilant during your period of activity in the world. So constantly dwell on these ideas, "The whole world is my body. All bodies are mine. All lives are mine. All pains are mine. All joys are mine!" Jealousy, anger, hatred, egoism, all will vanish.

The mind is the creator of all fancies, concepts and through these of worries. A little control over the mind should be exercised when small ripples of disturbance pass over the surface. Sit calmly and watch the mind-wanderings carefully. Find out what are its habitual likings and thoughts.

Just as you remove at once from your shoes a pebble that troubles you, so also you must be able to remove at once any tormenting thought from your mind.

All your troubles and miseries are due to your egoism. It is egoism that has limited you. The cause of your misery does not come from without. Annihilate this egoism. You will enjoy infinite bliss and a life of expansion.

The secret of renunciation is renunciation of egoism, mine-ness and desires. Objects do not bind you. It is mineness (Mamata) that binds you to this Samsara or cycle of births and deaths.

Free yourself from the base thoughts of the mind, the various useless Sankalpas. It is the actions of the mind, that are truly termed Karmas. True liberation results from the dethronement of the mind. Those who have freed themselves from the fluctuations of their minds come into possession of the supreme Nishtha (meditation). If the mind be purged of all its impurities, it will become very calm and all the worldly delusions attendant on its births and deaths will be soon destroyed.

Destroy the fuel of desire, and the fire of thoughts will be extinguished.

In every thought, in every action, you have to assert your mastery over your Vritti. Then Yoga is fulfilled, divine life is lived.


Yoga is the dissolution of thoughts in eternal awareness or pure consciousness without objectification, knowing without thinking, merging finitude in infinity.

The process of Yoga embodies an ascent into purity and into that absolute perfection which is the original state of man. It implies therefore the removal of the enveloping impurities, the stilling of the discordant vibratory tempo of the lower Kosas and establishment of a state of perfect balance and harmony.

Mastery over mind should be the object of Yoga Sadhana. If you can remain unshaken by grief and loss, anger and malice, lust and greed, hatred and jealousy, if you are able to curb egoism and selfishness, if you are not swayed by likes and dislikes, if you have equal vision, a broad heart and a catholic mind, if you possess a sterling character and good manners under all circumstances, if you value the need of others above your own, and if your mind is ever engaged in contemplation of His all-pervading presence, then you can assure yourself that you are practicing true Yoga.

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