As I consider the vanquishing of the six internal enemies (the aantarika shhaDarivarga, as defined and outlined by Sri Brahmananda Saraswati) living as a householder in the modern world, I notice that living Totality, any concession to the internal enemies is immediately felt. Cosmic life returns its bounty or punishment quickly and efficiently regarding personal behavior. There is no gap between our actions and their Cosmic significance. Hence the results come swiftly. Karma is lived immediately with any longer term results reflecting the increasing and successful expression of Cosmic life.
Here are my personal reflections based on my experience of the six internal enemies. The battle is over: 🙂
Lust (kaama): Regarding lust as a householder, there is a sacred responsibility whenever we engage in physical lovemaking with another human being. As long as these responsibilities are satisfied, even in the sole mission of the enjoyment of physical pleasure, all is well. Lust is not defined as sex for enjoyment, it is the dismissal of the sacred value of humanity in the fulfillment of that desire.
Anger (krodha): Maharishi said that anger is the conflict of two strong emotions, resulting in the destructive power of anger. For example we love our child but are fearful based on something they have done, so we express this in anger, signaling our failure to manage our emotional landscape, and the relationship. Anger is gradually eliminated as we increase our available emotional space, clear our heads through spiritual practice, create a helpful environment around ourselves, and learn to act compassionately towards ourselves and others, without conflict.
Greed (lobha): Greed is a perversion of the natural satisfaction felt for a job well done. Somehow the ego begins to hunger for this taking, associating it with money and power. The greedier we are, the more empty we become. We lose our power and wealth in debt to greed. Then our Cosmic potential is forgotten and we chase increasing zeros as a measure of our wealth. Living Cosmic life, wealth is found in endless abundance and there is nothing to worry about.
Working my career mostly in Silicon Valley (the San Francisco Bay Area), I went through a lot of lay-offs, and would often nearly run out of money. But it never failed that just as my bank account was running dry a lucrative position would be offered. Money was never something to focus on. By doing all the right actions including the resolution of past karma, money was automatically there.
Delusion (moha): Delusion is something we design for ourselves to make our reality fit the selfish demands of the ego. It is an unbalanced reality, where we are selfish, limited, and confused. All of this is based on an incomplete view of life, based instead on the distortion from stresses picked up along the way. We have both an immature and over-sized view of ourselves when we live in delusion. This can shade our relationship to ourselves and others or even to our world as appearing somewhat worse or somewhat better than it is; unbalanced. Delusion lives in the false safety of reinterpreting Reality to accommodate our weaknesses. Delusion doesn’t stand a chance when held up to Cosmic life, and is gradually dissolved through transcendence, devotion, and surrender.
Intoxification (mada): This could be interpreted to mean a tee-totaling existence, a complete absence of psychoactive substances in life, for example no alcohol, cannabis, caffeine, tobacco, kava, or betel nut.
As householders, we tread on careful ground in consideration of this inner enemy, intoxification or the habit of intoxication, the regular ingestion of toxins. Alcohol is a neurotoxin, a poison, though a glass or two of champagne, wine, or beer is a recognized and accepted addition to any festive gathering. By the same token (no pun intended), ingesting cannabis socially is increasingly seen as normal. Tobacco once widely accepted is used less so now, especially in the US. Kava and betel nut continue to be widely used in SE Asia.
None of the practices mentioned above are particularly injurious to the spiritual path when done in moderation. Of course if one does not pick up such habits to begin with, so much the better.
In my view, the injunction against intoxification certainly and absolutely applies to anything that can kill you, or deeply damage the nervous system. I am speaking of opiates, pharmaceutical drugs for suppression or excitation of the nervous system, cocaine, and psychedelics. Although the psychoactive effects of these intoxicants can be a brief soft substitute for Reality, the ultimate path is Hell. This also includes an addiction to alcohol, despite its wide acceptance.
Jealousy (maatsarya): Pardon me, but I find jealousy to be the most foolish of the six inner enemies, to covet another’s gifts or good fortune seems, well, insane. Why on earth would anyone do that? It isn’t as if we are willing to take the additional responsibility of living the person’s life of whom we are jealous. It is just the immature desire of wanting something unearned. Just the opposite, I am now always overjoyed at another person’s or organization’s [balanced] success. It simply makes for a better world and spreads good fortune. We each have our own path.
This is my view of the six internal enemies, the aantarika shhaDarivarga, and the means by which I am able to dynamically prevent their growth. As karma is returned immediately in Cosmic life, the management of the six enemies and the strategy for my ongoing victory is always obvious. Life continues successfully and untroubled.
Living Cosmic life, Brahman, Totality is the sole solution to the six internal enemies, for we then have enough space in which to play under Mother’s watchful gaze, all the time in the world, and a clear view of Reality.
~~ All Glory to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and Sri Brahmananda Saraswati ~~