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Sometimes, we face adverse situations and we react to them without thinking and act impulsively. Does this bring us down spiritually? What should we do to prevent such reactions?

Public Satsang at Dubai- 27th August 2015

Swami: There are two ways one can live by: poorvatapa and pashchattapa.
Poorvatapa is thinking of the consequences before you act and then deciding whether the act is meritorious or not. Pashchattapa is acting before you think and then suffering for what you’ve done.

A man can truly live correctly if he thinks before he acts; i.e. poorvatapa. In the Mahabharata, Arjuna had to fight his own kith and kin. Before the battle itself, he saw the consequences of the war and told Krishna that he did not want to fight because the war would lead to destruction of his own people on both sides. That is poorvatapa. Most of the time you act instinctively and then you suffer. Thinking before acting is a good quality, which is the power of viveka or discrimination, which is given only to human beings. Discriminating right actions from wrong actions and vairagya, detachment from actions that are not meritorious, is important. So, man has been bestowed with viveka and vairagya, and it is up to the man whether to use them or not. Animals do not have this power. So, they act without thinking and suffer or enjoy based on what they’ve done.

Man is different. He has been given this discrimination and detachment. Discrimination of right from wrong, of good and bad, of meritorious and sinful acts, and then detaching himself from all that is sinful, wrong and bad. You must practise using this. Only by practise will you attain perfection. Therefore, the next time a situation arises like this, you will be able to choose well.

The mind is always in a hurry. It wants its ego, which is its identity, to be protected. It always acts in favour of its own ego. The heart always worries and thinks about others before acting, because the heart is selfless. Therefore, the heart will take the right decisions every moment. Anytime you have to say or do something, take a moment, close your eyes, take a deep breath and think what it would lead to. Do not be in a hurry to act. Hurry, Worry, Curry. Haste makes waste, waste makes worry. Do not be in a hurry.