• JUser::_load: Unable to load user with id: 531

The eternal process of give and take

The word renunciation generally has a negative tone, an other worldy connotation. Most people associate renunciation with a lack of interest and enthusiasm in life. Some even call it as an escape door from the realities of everyday life. Renunciation could also frighten many, on account of its close relationship with formal monastic life. As monastic vocation is not possible for burgeoning millions - they would rather enjoy than give up. Renunciation is rarely understood or seriously reflected upon in its true sense.

The question is this: Is renunciation necessary? Swami Vivekananda considered renunciation as one of India's national ideals, the other being Service. Can renunciation be considered India's national ideal? This requires a clearer understanding of the word.

The word Renunciation is a noun; its verb being 'to renounce', which means to give up. 'Give and Take' is the very nature of life. We are all part of a mighty process of 'Give and Take'. Sun takes up water from the oceans, rivers and ponds, only to give it back as rain. Earth takes up rain, only to return it by growing food grains, and greening the forests. Within the society, when this cycle of 'Give and Take' is distributed, social unrest and anguish are born. When a person hoards more than what he needs, he begins on a journey of frustration and increasing insecurity. Without this' Give and Take' principle, no life is possible. In order to become a youth, for instance, one has to let go his immature aberrations if he has to grow into a mature, stable personality. 'Give and Take' in life is so commonplace that hardly anyone pays attention to it. One cannot have one's say in everything one gets in life; we have to give in something. When we do not understand this, we become miserable.

People are afraid of renunciation because they think that what they should renounce is more valuable than what they will gain in its place. Their present possessions are more real to them; renunciation only promises something imaginary. The story is told of a King who once visited a Saint. The King profusely praised and admired the Saint for his renunciation. The King expressed that the Saint was indeed great, for having given up all claims to possessions, power and pelf. The Saint, bemused at the King's unwarranted praise, responded by saying, "O King! Your renunciation is greater than mine. I have renounced the 'World' which is after all impermanent and changing, whereas you have given up God himself, the One Source of eternal well being and bliss in life!" How true!

Authors Of Shared Thoughts

FREE Online Psychological Counselling by Banjara Academy for anyone, anywhere in the world FREE online counselling for the depressed

  • Are you stressed about your child?
  • Is your marriage in trouble?
  • Are you stressed about your education?
  • Do you feel overwhelmed by anxiety and fear?

Just mail your counsellor now, sharing your problems, your worries, your anxieties, your fears. Your counsellor will reply to you, and be there for you until you need her to help you cope and get going.

Leading Banjara Academy's online email counselling team of volunteer-counsellors, I realize it is not an easy task reaching out to a person one has never met, never seen, without the added advantage of gestures, eye contact, a gentle reassuring touch, tone of voice and yet providing empathy, positive strokes, making the person feel heard and understood.

With the aid of only written words, it is quite a task building trust, making people open up and share and helping them cope and feel better. So when in many instances they write back saying thank you and that they feel so much better, the feeling one gets is priceless and incomparable - knowing one has done something right, something good!

Hats off to all the volunteeer-counsellors of Banjara Academy who have been carrying on this work silently, anonymously for the last couple of years. Truly commendable! - Ali Khwaja

This website was initially conceived and designed by the late Sitaram N
Copyright © 2017 Creative Commons License
Except where otherwise noted, the Content of the Website of Banjara Academy - the text, the audios, the videos, the images - contributed by Dr Ali Khwaja and his team of volunteers at Banjara Academy is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.