This chapter is the English translation of Gujarati Book
               Title   -  Sadhak and Sathi
               Author  -  Shri Atmanandji (Dr. Soneji)

                             CHAPTER - 15



      Contentment is a state in which even when subjected to various
      longings and temptations in day-to-day life, one remains
      unruffled and satisfied.  As explained earlier in our chapter on
      forgiveness, let it be clearly understood, that contentment is
      the very basic nature of Soul (Atma).  Therefore permitting
      greediness to arise or becoming greedy is unnatural in spiritual
      vision, as it gives birth to viciousness and sorrows.


      One who experiences resorting to spiritual practice (Sadhana)
      and has understood the nature of the soul (Atma) and the
      doctrine of Karma by philosophical vision, is very fortunate
      indeed.  Such a heroic person has the necessary capability to
      uphold the great virtue of contentment.  Wealth, power,
      relations and fame cannot be attained just by hankering after
      them.  These things can be acquired easily if one deserves them
      and is lucky to have the benefit of previously acquired merit.
      It is only when such true conviction and faith arise, that
      supreme contentment reveals itself by stages in the life of an
      aspirant (Sadhaka).

      When contentment is attained, a person experiences mental peace,
      ease in life, and a state free from worries and tension.  He is
      not inclined to be attracted by big festivals.  Thus, by stages,
      he experiences introversion and steadiness, and attains to the
      highest transcendental meditation (Nirvikalpa-Samadhi).  He also
      associates with divine bliss through the control of the mind
      (Chitta).  Attainment of this state is the climax of a
      successful spiritual life.  This is precisely the true
      meditation of the Yogis, the unflinching devotion of devotees
      and self-knowledge of enlightened souls.

      Desirelessness is achieved in proportion to contentment;
      accomplished with the dawning of non-attachment.  A spiritual
      practice in isolation results in quick success of spiritual
      progress.  A higher state is also attained to in the life
      hereafter because of the collection of unique virtues through
      quietude of passions in general and covetousness in particular.


      The process narrated in the first chapter on forgiveness applies
      here also.  In that chapter we have described the stages of
      annihilation of anger and the process thereof; here, in a
      similar manner, we have to understand that the effort of
      annihilation of covetousness becomes successful by resorting to
      the virtue under discussion.

      However, actually conquering covetousness is indeed more
      difficult than conquering anger.  Covetousness is so very
      cunning that it is not externally manifested while anger is
      detected by several external signs, and hence, its detection
      becomes simple.

      Covetousness is, again, shown to be the last of all passions to
      be separated from soul (Atman), as described in the Jaina
      doctrines.  This is due to the utter difficulty of conquering
      its subtle types.  The condemnation of covetousness and the
      greatness of contentment are known to the world by famous
      sayings such as, "Covetousness fathers sin," "The pit of desires
      is limitless and endless," "Desire is the root cause of sorrow,"
      and so on.

      A person blinded by covetousness resorts not only to deceit,
      treachery and injustice, but may go to the extent even of
      killing the other person.  A person subjected to covetousness
      resorts to such condemnable acts as described above and
      therefore the Sadhaka should continue in his efforts to strike
      constantly at the gross and subtle forms of covetousness and
      resort to the virtue of supreme contentment for his further


      1. Discontent is a great sorrow and contentment is a great
         happiness.  Let the Sadhakas have such firm conviction and
         let them try constantly to feel contented.

      2. Wealth in the form of cash, land, houses, cars, and jewels is
         known to the world, but few in the world know that
         contentment is the wealth before which all other forms of
         wealth are just trifles.

      3. Contentment is natural wealth, while voluptuousness is
         unnatural penury.

      4. A calm personality is the highest austerity (Tapas).
         Contentment is the highest happiness.  Desires are the worst
         of diseases.  Compassion is the noblest religion.

      5. A person free from attachment is free from worries, one free
         from worries is free from anxiety.  The person who is not
         attached to any object is a uncrowned king or queen of the

      6. Giving up attachment to wealth and such like, is difficult.
         Persons endowed with a sense of discrimination are also
         enslaved by covetousness.  One should therefore, constantly
         study and put into practice, the causes that reduce

      7. The great emperors (Chakravarti) of the earth and the king of
         heaven (Indra) also have great desires and attachments.  They
         become acquisitive.  However only great sages on the earth
         who have abandoned desires completely by resorting to true
         contentment, really experience increasing divine and
         supersensuous bliss.  Such great souls command respect and
         veneration from one and all.

      8. O Soul!  What do you desire now?  Desire is the root of
         sorrow.  The eternal misery is dissipated only when the
         desire is destroyed.

      9. A saint (Yogi) is supreme being in the world for the time
         when he is desireless.  The moment he desires something
         worldly, the world is superior to him and he becomes a

     10. As one gives up desires through right knowledge, his mind
         slowly and steadily gives up unsteadiness.  As unsteadiness
         is given up, the mind and the senses are conquered, the
         hesitations disappears from the mind.  This leads the
         aspirant (Sadhaka) to experience the delight of Supreme
         transcendental meditation (Samadhi).

     11. A person is happy permanently in contentment.  He is ever
         merged in the ambrosia of self meditation.  Senses and their
         objects seen to be a source of unhappiness to him.

     12. It is necessary that a person gives up all worldly desires
         so that he can attain to absolute Truth.  If desires are not
         restrained, they go on expanding and make it difficult to
         liberate from worldly life.  This is because the depth of
         desires and attachments is endless and can never be filled.
         Self-controlled, heroic, and discriminating persons therefore
         conquer desires and passions through contentment and lead
         their lives for the ultimate freedom of themselves and
         others.  Let us praise these heroes!  Blessed are these great



      A great Sanskrit scholar named Kaiyata, was the writer of the
      great religious scripture "Maha-Bhashya-Tilaka".  He was from
      the tradition of the Brahmin pundits of Kashmir.  He led the
      life of a sage (Rishi).  His cottage had one mat on the floor to
      seat, a water-pot, a few clothes and utensils, and religious
      books (Shastra).

      He was always busy with his religious works for many hours in a
      day.  His wife used to weave ropes and earned a some money for
      food.  They were very poor, yet he and his wife will not to
      accept any charity from any source.

      The king of Kashmir learnt of the poor life of this great
      scholar Kaiyata.  He personally came to his cottage and said
      humbly with folded hands, "Sir, I am ashamed that the learned
      scholar (pundit) like you, is poor in my kingdom."

      Kaiyata immediately folded his mat, took water-pot and told his
      wife, "Let us not stay here.  The king feels ashamed of us!"

      The king bow down at his feet with folded hands, "Kindly pardon
      my mistake if any.  Kindly give me an opportunity to serve you!"

      Kaiyata replied, "If you are serious about serving me, please
      see that you or your officers do not come here.  Please do not
      send gifts, money or food and so on.  My only desire is to live
      in seclusion, study the scriptures, write, and remain engrossed
      in the self meditation.  I desire nothing else."

      This is the desirelessness of a true devotee of the goddess of
      learning (Saraswati).  Such contentment is difficult to be found
      in modern days in scholars or even in saints and monks.


      Swami Dayananda Saraswati is in the first rank of the great men
      of the nineteenth century.  He has established the new Hindu
      religion sect called Arya-Samaj.  He was a great devotee and
      servant of Indian culture.  He was a celibate throughout his

      In the initial days of his spiritual practice (Sadhana), he
      followed a strict vow with himself and used to wear only one
      loin cloth on his body.  Once a gentleman came and said,
      "Swamiji, since you have only one loin cloth, I have brought

      Swamiji replied, "Well friend, even this one loin cloth is a
      burden to me.  Why do you load me with an extra burden?  I thank
      you for your regard, but I cannot accept another loin cloth.
      Please take it back."

      This was the desirelessness and spirit of contentment of the
      great monk (yogi).


      Sheikh Sadi was a great religious preacher of moslim religion in
      Iran.  He was very poor.  Once he had no shoes to wear and no
      money to buy.  Without shoes, while walking, his feet used to
      burn and pebbles bruised his feet.  He felt very discomfort.

      During this time he went for prayers to the mosque at Kufa.  He
      saw at the entrance, a man with both his legs amputated.  When
      Sheikh Sadi pondered over that man's helplessness, his eyes
      opened.  He thanked God, "O God, how kind of you!  You have kept
      my two legs safe!"

      If we look to the sorrows of others in the world, our own
      sorrows lessen.  We then remain contented with the state that
      providence has placed us in.

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