Let’s face our problems fair and square

By Swami Chinmayananda

Who has no problems? Everyone has. A crowd of problems marching towards us with plans to conquer us – is life to the majority!

But some rare people discover, even in the midst of a host of threatening problems, an artistic way of tickling them all to laughter! This art, in fact, should be the art of living, unaffected by the little problems of our lives.

Loss of wealth, of a dear and near relation are all examples, and a few come to consider these as grave problems, while others seem to discover in themselves a secret spring of some mysterious power, encouraged by which they walk out of their heart pangs to face the problem in the open sunlit world.

Grave problems can drive only unintelligent men of undisciplined thought and habits to an early grave! Others walk side by side with their grave problems and so manipulate the circumstances and make use of the various happenings around them that they always successfully push the problems into the grave and themselves safely walk away! Such men are the mighty men of destiny in the world.

In a hospital, the doctor goes around, and bed to bed he instructs everything that the patient needs – his environment, his situation, what food to be taken, whether he can move about or not.

The doctor is not there to give you sorrow. But a certain amount of sorrow is unavoidable to take you out of the imperfections in the physical structure at that moment. In his pain, the patient may curse the doctor.

But the doctor only smiles. He knows from experience that when the patient has been discharged, he would prostrate before the doctor and say, “Doctor! You have saved me!”

In the same way, the infinitely kind Lord supplies each one of us the right environment necessary to evolve us; sometimes to some people more pain; to others more joy. But if we know that it is the process of evolution – that these are what is necessary for me, what I need for my growth – if we have got that much of faith in the Lord as we have for the doctor, life then becomes beautiful. Then onwards, we don’t get involved in either joys or sorrows but stand apart as a witness to watch the process.

From then on, at all places – be it in the marketplace, in our profession, in our business, in our home, in our social contacts – we remain equipoised and balanced. We are afraid there afterwards of nothing. Tremendous courage comes to us.

A problem is never solved by succumbing to it. In fact, problems grow, fattened and nourished by the number of victims that come under their onslaught.

Therefore, each of us must learn the art of facing the upheavals in our lives. There is no shortcut, no mysterious and secret way. The grand old path has to be trodden to reach the eternal goal of perfect peace.

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Views expressed above are the author’s own.


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