Katopanishad Session 10

Inspirations from Talks by Pujya Guruji Swami Tejomayananda

Om Namo bhagavate  vaivasvatAya mrityave brahmavidyAchAryAya nachiketase cha

1.2.1

We all think we have many options in front of our life but actually we have only 2 options – to follow: the path of Shreyas (values) or preyas (valuables).

अन्यच्छ्रेयोऽन्यदुतैव प्रेय -

स्ते उभे नानार्थे पुरुषँ सिनीतः

तयोः श्रेय आददानस्य साधु

भवति हीयतेऽर्थाद्य प्रेयो वृणीते १॥

One is shreyas and the other is preyas. These two are of different goals (nAnArthE) and both bind a person (sinItah). But of the two, for the one who choses shreyas, for him, all good (sAdhu) comes to him and life is fulfilled. The one who choses preyas slips (hIyate) from the attainment of human goal (arthAt).

Shreyas

Preyas

Spiritual wellbeing

appeasement of mind, material prosperity

Path of values

Path of valuable goods

Eternal reality

Transactional/Relative Reality

One Goal

Many varieties – so many options

Striving is only until the goal is reached, then complete fulfillment

The list of desirables never ends – so always unfulfilled

These 2 paths are thus not only different but opposed and of different results. For example, one can learn to sing and study Medicine but one cannot study Medicine and Engineering.

How do both the paths bind an individual? As long as we want to achieve something in life we need to do something. YAvath prAptavyam tAvat kartavyam| But in Shreyas, since goal is only one, once it is attained there is absolute fulfilment, all to-do lists end. Whereas in preyas there are many varieties of goals and they keep changing as mind changes, the list never ends so there is never a fulfilment. All the time one is busy with routine or pending or urgent things that the important thing is forgotten so ever it remains. However, in both cases, one has to work for it and so one is bound.

For the one who chooses the path of values, and not just what he likes, all is well with him and for others ‘all is in the well’.  J And even if we strive and get a pleasurable object, it is not worth all the time and efforts. What do we get at the end?

1.2.2

श्रेयश्च प्रेयश्च मनुष्यमेतः

तौ सम्परीत्य विविनक्ति धीरः

श्रेयो हि धीरोऽभि प्रेयसो वृणीते

प्रेयो मन्दो योगक्षेमाद्वृणीते २॥

When we drive, we see sign boards this road goes to Mumbai, this to Pune. But no sign board to shreyas and preyas. Only a wise person is able to separate after analysing both. The man of right thinking (dhIrah) choses shreyas and the dull one choses preyas for yoga and kshema

If two things come very separate and distinct, then we can find out, but if the two come together in the same way, then how to make out which is shreyas and which is preyas?

When a person has a desire for an object, it appears he has 1 desire but in that there are 2. Through that desire for the object, he actually wants abiding happiness only. In any desire for any object really speaking there is another deeper motivating desire for abiding happiness. We should directly seek that which will lead us to everlasting happiness. What we want is happiness and we collect material things. All that we work for comes, but not what we wanted. So we feel unhappy despite of having all the things that we wanted. Then we don’t know what to do with all that is collected, we put them in car garage and then have a garage sale.

DhIrah, a vivekI thinks do I really want the object? Shreyas and preyas come together only. For example, the food that comes to us, do we eat good food, keeping good health in mind (Shreyas)?  Or only for taste (preyas)? There too we are not following path of preyas.

And then we slip down. People like to drive fast. There are sign boards ‘speed thrills but kills’, yet at that moment he is driven by desire. Thus, since shreyas and preyas come together we can’t see them distinctly, a viveki examines carefully and says he really wants shreyas and choses it. One who chooses preya is called a manda – slow, dull witted. Whom we call smart is dumb only from spiritual stand point.

People take pride in saying children use smart phones, even adults have all these but not right thinking. Yoga is gaining something that which is not gained and kshema is preserving the gained. Many decide to procure something because the neighbour has it, thinking that by acquiring more and more fulfilment will happen. But such a person is manda only and majority choose preyas only.

1.2.3

त्वं प्रियान्प्रियरूपांश्च कामान्

अभिध्यायन्नचिकेतोऽत्यस्राक्षीः

नैतां सृङ्कां वित्तमयीमवाप्तो

यस्यां मज्जन्ति बहवो मनुष्याः ३॥

Yamaraj ji congratulates Nachiketas for choosing shreyas. “The ways of material prosperity – the delightful desirables, having gained all that, having considered their pros and cons, you gave up all those things in which majority of people get drowned. “

Abhidhyayan atyasrAkshIh– having understood, rejected the temptations

His vairagya was not because he could not get those desirables (alAbhE) everything was given to him and he rose above all that.

Shreyas is atmajnAnam and Preyas is all other things. Nachiketas has proved he is a uttama adhikari – to say this yama explained Shreyas and preyas.

Key takeaways:

  1.  All the time one is busy with routine or pending or urgent things that the important thing is forgotten so ever it remains.
  2. We should directly seek that which will lead us to everlasting happiness. What we want is happiness and we collect material things. All that we work for comes, but not what we wanted. So we feel unhappy despite of having all the things that we wanted.
  3. One and the same person cannot do shreyas also and preyas since they are of different goals.



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