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Vedanta Teaches A Very Beautiful And Easy Renunciation

Vedanta teaches a very beautiful and easy renunciation. Vedanta does not say, seek your own salvation and let everyone else go to the dogs. It does not teach abandoning of wife and children and making all kinds of disturbances in society. No, what good shall that do? That breeds only egotism. Vedanta says, love everyone as a manifestation of God. Greet everyone as Narayana. Love the poorest, the sick and the weak. Love all, because Narayana stands before you. Renounce your own ease and comfort when Narayana needs your help. Penetrate behind the veil; see God in all. Love, love, and never hate! That is the great renunciation. That is practical Vedanta. Renounce hatred and selfishness, love of ease and comfort, and envy and jealousy. Those who want to be renouncers, let them renounce these evil tendencies. Then if they like to throw away their money let them do so (but always without hurting others). But true renunciation goes deeper than giving up of wealth and position.

The little self, the ego, must be renounced first of all. And then very little else matters, whether you live in a house or in a cave, whether your hat costs 50 cents or 50 dollars. That is the spirit of Vedanta.

And how can we renounce the little self? By loving God, by transferring our love from ourselves to God. Wisdom makes us the best of renouncers. The jnani knows that God is his real Self. He loves God, his real, stainless, eternal Self and that love makes him forget more and more the little ego. We must love ourselves. We cannot help it. We indulge in big talk, but look closely and see whom you love. Examine your wonderful deeds of unselfishness and self-sacrifice. Do not delude yourself. There is a hidden motive. The little ‘I’ comes in somewhere. It may be hidden from the eyes of the world, but we can easily discover it if we have a mind to do so. Therefore know yourself. See that the little ‘I’ is only a reflection of the Self, of God. Then we will love the Self. And that is pure love, for that Self is as much you as I. That is the Atman. My Atman is not different from your Atman. It is one and the same Atman, one and the same Self, one and the same God. Loving That, I love myself, you and all that lives. I love the universal Spirit and thereby I am drawn to the Spirit and away from littleness, from matter, from worldliness, from filth and impurity. ‘That which is Universal is Blissfulness itself. There is no blissfulness in that which is little. That which is little is perishable. Inquire of the Universal. That is thy real Self,’ declares the Chandogya Upanishad. Where there is love of God, there is no desire. ‘Where there is Rama, there is no kama; where there is kama, there Rama is not’ is a Hindu saying. Where God is, there is no desire; where desire is, there is no God.