Swami Niranjanananda Saraswati

There is a great connection between a person and destiny. If you know destiny which you don’t, then you have the same enlightenment as the enlightenment of God.

What is destiny? A sequence of events over which an individual has no control and no power, just as there is no control over the decay of the body from birth to old age. It happens, and it is not something that happens sporadically, but it happens continuously. It is an everyday event yet we are unable to stop it from happening. It is an inevitable sequence of events which shapes our physical body, which affects our intelligence, maturity, which decides our nature, interactions in life, our swabhava, our nature. It decides the predominance of the guna. It decides how far we are going to travel in life. It is the controlling factor of life.

Human beings do not control or create destiny. What destiny can be materially, socially, spiritually, in terms of global consciousness, in terms of universal consciousness, in terms of individual consciousness different? It can also be perceived differently.

Lord of destiny

The ruler of destiny, the Lord of destiny, is somebody with whom we have the closest relationship. That kind of relationship we don’t have with any other being. The Lord of destiny controls the body, the function and performance of the various organs of the body, the nature, the gunas, the karmas, the evolution, the samskaras, the maturity of mind, the maturity of emotion. Even the process of enlightenment is subject to the control of the Lord of destiny.

It is the Lord of destiny who in other stages of its expression is recognized as some other power. It can be recognized as spiritual power, as a social transformative power. It is a force that guides each and everybody’s life from birth to death and possibly even beyond. It is not only limited to this dimension, to this space, to this time. In infinity that power exists. Just as there is destiny of finite beings, there is also a destiny of infinity and destiny determines its nature and role. After all, what is the role of infinity? What is the nature of infinity? The moment you define, the moment you decide that infinity is like this, it is not infinite. Whether you call it swabhava or whether you call it nature, prakriti, whether you call it spiritual shakti, the masculine or feminine aspect of the transcendental nature, what determines the role of every individual in creation is destiny.

Therefore, we have the closest relationship with the Lord of destiny. We may not have a close relationship with the Lord of love, the one who becomes the object of our love, faith and devotion. We try to learn how to develop that connection or relationship with the Lord of our affection and devotion. However, we live our intimate relationship with the Lord of our destiny. This is a very intricate and subtle link: two strands which entwine each other and become a string, that is life and that is existence after death – existence in life and existence in death.

Your house

Destiny cannot be transformed by purushartha or effort. Destiny can only be transformed by grace. Purushartha or effort can make you more alert, cautious and aware of how you live your life. It can ensure that you don’t become entangled in the negative dimensions and expressions of life, and ensure that you remain positive and optimistic until the end of your journey.

When you buy a house, it is totally bare. You are free to decorate it inside according to your choice. As you decorate the house to please yourself and others, so that your house becomes an example of beauty – that is purushartha. The destiny was the ceiling, four walls and floor that you had when you first entered the house.

23 December 2000, Ganga Darshan, Munger