Program of Life

Swami Sivananda Saraswati

How many of you have got a definite program of life? Have you got an ideal, a goal to be achieved? Are you working definitely towards it? Do you have a program of life: after so many years I should retire, when I retire I should do some service selflessly, I should meditate and I should spend all my time in sadhana; I should take sannyasa at such and such age. No.

You have an ill-regulated life and go on blindly from day to day repeating the same old actions. You will have to discipline your life. You need not neglect your worldly duties. Have a changed angle of vision towards life. Treat the children as manifestations of the Lord. Treat all your activities as worship of the Lord. You should transform all your activities into yogic activities.

You must have a changed angle of vision, otherwise you will not be able to transmute all your actions into divine activity. Sri Krishna says in the Bhagavad Gita (8:7): Tasmat sarveshu kaleshu mamanusmara yudhya cha – Therefore, think of me always and fight. To fight means to do your duty. Whatever you do – eating, talking, everything – you can transform into a yogic activity if you feel that you are offering all these as worship to the Lord. Don’t expect the fruits of the actions. Then you will not be bound by the actions.

You should put all these instructions into practice, not merely listen to lectures. Lecturing is only a little bit of intellectual play, a little intellectual gymnastics or amusement. Whatever you hear, you will have to put into practice.

12 September 1950, Theosophical Society, Varanasi