Even though you have not conquered in battles the world, you become the world conqueror when you have conquered your mind. – Chinmaya
How can a mind-conqueror be greater than a world-conqueror?
This is so because the world has no existence apart from the existence of the mind. Only when the mind exists, the world exists. This is proved in the scriptures through Anvaya-vyatireka method.
In our deep-sleep mind is absent, and therefore the world is also absent. In the dream state and the waking state, the dream world and the waking world is experienced only through the mind. Hence there is no world without the mind. Thus when the mind is conquered, the world is conquered.
The wise, therefore, instead of trying to conquer the world, take a U-turn and conquer the source of the world – the mind.
It is said about Diogenes, that even Alexander the Great became jealous of him. Diogenes was just a naked fakir, and he had nothing. He had renounced everything; he was searching for his own inner world.
It is said about him that when he renounced the world, he used to carry a small begging bowl. But then one day he saw a dog drinking water from a river. He threw that begging-bowl. He said, “If the dog can do without it, then am I worse than the dog?” Everything was thrown away. He remained naked.
Many stories, rumours, were reaching Alexander that this man had something in him. Finally, fascinated, Alexander went to see him, and he could see that the man had something that he had not. He was just lying down. It was a winter morning; it was cool and the sun was rising. He was lying down by the side of a river, bathing himself in the early sun, naked.
Said Alexander with an air of arrogance, “You know who I am? I am Alexander, the world conqueror. Ask anything and it shall be given.”
Diogenes laughed and said, “You are obstructing the sunlight. Please stand by the side. This is all the boon I ask from you. And remember, don’t disturb anybody else’s life. That’s enough; nothing else do I want from you – because all that I want is within me.”
And Alexander could feel that the man was true, literally true – the solidity, the
crystallized being, the ‘vibe’ of one who has attained, the surround, the climate of the person who is filled with an inner light, inner realization, inner riches. He could see it. He bowed down and he said, “If next time I am to come into the world, I would ask God not to make me Alexander, but Diogenes.”
Diogenes laughed and said, “There is no need to wait that long. You can become a Diogenes right now! For what are you struggling and conquering people, and moving continuously and warring? For what?”
Said Alexander, “First I want to conquer Middle Asia, then India, then the Far East…”
And Diogenes went on asking, “Then what? Then what?”
Finally, Alexander said, “Once I have conquered the whole world, I would then like to rest.”
And Diogenes said, “You look to me the most stupid, because I am resting without conquering the world. You can rest by my side. See, the bank is so big; we can share it. And nobody comes here. You can rest to your heart’s desire. Who is preventing you? And I don’t see the point that one needs to conquer the world first just to rest in the end. You can rest any moment.”
At that moment Alexander must have felt his poverty. He said, “You are right. I am mad, but now it is difficult for me to come back. I have to conquer, only then can I come.”
And when he was leaving, Diogenes said, “Remember, nobody can come back unless one is aware. And if you are aware right this moment, the journey stops. If you are not aware, you will never come back.”
And Alexander never could go back. He died before he reached back home.
Why do we crave to conquer the world?
Infinity is our nature. Hence we crave to have infinite joy, power, freedom, fame, strength etc. Only when we are infinite, we feel ‘at home’. But unfortunately, due to our tight embrace with the finite – namely the body, mind and intellect – we experience only finitude. This sense of identification with our finite equipments is called as Ahankaar or ego.
All finite efforts made by the finite ego to expand itself hoping to unite with the infinite end up in a disappointingly endless process, called as Samsaar.
Then what is the solution?
Annihilate the mind. With that, the ego is annihilated, and our identification with the finite instruments ceases. With it, our sense of limitation also vanishes.
When once we come to know of our limitless nature, all sense of want disappears; the desire for the world ends. End of desires means the end of slavery. End of slavery is mastery. Thus a mind-conqueror effortlessly becomes a world-conqueror.
O M T A T S A T