Om Namah Shivaya

Venkatesaya - 'Be' with Swami Venkatesananda

Daily Readings, Yoga, and Satsangs with Swami Venkatesananda

What Choice Have You?

There is something beautiful in natural phenomena. Their inevitability and even their unpredictability are beautiful. There is no confusion, there is no indecision. There is wisdom.

When it comes to the human being, there is confusion and indecision. We feel that we have to make the decision; of course what is made is artificial, not natural, and it has no relation whatsoever with intelligent life which is natural.

This confusion is effectively masked by our perverted intellect with the theory of ‘freedom of choice’. The trees have no choice, the birds have no choice, “But we human beings are superior and therefore we have choice”.

The choice is between that which is good (often not pleasant to the seeker of pleasure) on the one hand, and that which is pleasant (most often not good) on the other. The human intellect sees this creation of its own fancy as choice. It prefers the pleasant, but dreads the evil consequences; it likes the good but not the unpleasantness involved in it. It hopes that the evil consequences or the unpleasantness will somehow go away; in this hope it postpones the decision. Procrastination aggravates the problem. Inhibitions and reservations make spontaneous action impossible; and there is no energy in such unspontaneous action.

It is clear that the root cause of all this is the pursuit of pleasure. When the inner intelligence sees this, there is intense awareness of the pursuit of pleasure. In the light of this awareness, this pursuit is stalled. Life proceeds, action proceeds, making its own moment to moment and extremely intelligent decision. Life flows naturally, whatever its course and whatever its destination.