We know well that for each and every activity there should be a first step. In the same way, to attain liberation or self realisation, there are various steps. Let us now find out what could be our first step. There is a saying that slow and steady win the race. Let us now proceed slowly. Let us not jump from one stage to another stage. Let us be in one stage, think over it, understand the intricacies of the stage, enjoy the stage and then proceed towards the next. Self realisation is a long process. Patience and dedication are the basics. If we do not have these two, let us not proceed further. Instead of taking the tough path of self realisation, we can very well choose the path of devotion, which is comparatively less tedious. The path of devotion means doing your daily rituals, visiting places of worship, chanting the names of God etc.
Which ever the path we choose, we have to follow it meticulously. In the path of self realisation, let us first understand that our body is just a veil for the atma or Brahman inside. The physical body has no role to play on its own, but certainly it aids in controlling our desires. The effects of desires go only to the physical body. We used to sleep in an air-conditioned room. If the air conditioner is not working for a day, we are not able to get a good sleep. Our body is addicted to the comforts of air conditioning. Such comforts are only to the body. Whether we sleep in an air conditioned room or not, the atman does not change. Atman does not differentiate between comfort and discomfort. That is why I have said our body has no role to play in self realisation. But the body aids in controlling our desires. Body is controlled by the mind is different, which we will take up for discussion later in this series. The first to be brought under control is our sense organs. Let us begin with taste.
We always relish sumptuous food varieties. Liking for good food is a desire. At the same time we cannot live without food. Certainly basic food is required to nourish the body. Why do we then need sumptuous food, when we know that we can live with an ordinary food? To begin with why can’t we reduce the salt content in our food? Why can’t we reduce our dependence on chilly and pepper for taste? Why can’t we reduce sugar for our coffee and tea? If we are not able to start from here, take it from me, we cannot make a beginning at all. As the first step, let us try to control our addiction to taste. Smoking and drinking are very serious addictions. They damage our central nervous system, where Kundalini is going to traverse up and down. With a weak central nervous system, there is no question of awakening Kundalini. Same is the case with sleeping pills. So please avoid all the three. One can put forth many arguments saying that they have nothing to do with self realisation. In fact, they have nothing to do with the atman. But don’t we know that atman is covered by the physical body? How we will feel with a foul smelling pullover? Can we get a good sleep? No we can’t. When we are lying under a foul pullover, instead of relaxing our mind, we will be cursing the foul pullover. Please alnalyse these facts before we proceed further.