Life is often a struggle, outside and within. We are confronted with forces and circumstances which try to depress and discourage us. We do not know how to face them and handle them.
The question arises : Where can we find the strength which can help us to become master of circumstances, to surmount difficulties and failures, to become an instrument of the Divine?
We give here two very beautiful and reassuring letters of Sri Aurobindo, where he says that the Strength we seek lies within us, and it is possible for each one of us to find it. And its action can change even weakness into power and turn incapacity into capacity.
You should not be so dependent on outward things; it is this attitude that makes you give so excessive an importance to circumstances. I do not say that circumstances cannot help or hinder – but they are circumstances, not the fundamental thing which is in ourselves, and their help or their hindrance ought not to be of primary importance.
In yoga, as in every great or serious human effort, there is always bound to be an abundance of adverse interventions and unfavourable circumstances which have to be overcome. To give them too great an importance increases their importance and their power to multiply themselves, gives them, as it were, confidence in themselves and the habit of coming. To face them with equanimity – if one cannot manage a cheerful persistence against them of confident and resolute will – diminishes, on the contrary, their importance and effect and in the end, though not at once, gets rid of their persistence and recurrence.
It is therefore a principle in yoga to recognise the determining power of what is within us – for that is the deeper truth – to set that right and establish the inward strength as against the power of outward circumstances. The strength is there – even in the weakest; one has to find it, to unveil it and to keep it in front throughout the journey and the battle.
- Sri Aurobindo
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सिद्धयसिद्धयोर्निर्विकार: कर्ता सात्त्विक उच्यते ॥१८.२६॥
Freed from attachment, non-egoistic, endowed with courage and enthusiasm and unperturbed by success or failure, the worker is known as a pure (Sattvika) one. Four outstanding and essential qualities of a worker. - Bhagwad Gita : XVIII-26