“Fortunately, it is not reason which puts an ally together. It is the body. You have perceived ally in many degrees and on many occasions. Each of those perceptions was stored in your body. The sum of those pieces is the ally ‚Ķ Our reason is petty and it is always at odds with our body. This, of course, is only a way of talking, bu the triumph of a man of knowledge is that he has joined the two together.”
Carlos Castaneda

Tales of Power



short version: question your motivations and actions; do what you need to do and avoid doing what others need to do; how can you tell the difference? when your actions are yours you will experience a sustained feeling of peace and satisfaction; a teacher can be very helpful on this path.

“What should motivate people to act?

Svadharma. Dharma is that which protects, holds up and elevates. In the upholding of dharma, every person has a role to play. Each of us, have responsibilities. It is necessary to be clear about what each responsibility entails, and do one’s best to discharge it. It is also necessary to be clear about the limits of this responsibility and not interfere in or worry about things that fall within the orbit of another’s responsibility. This is svadharma.

Svadharma must be done with Sraddha. Sraddha in the rightness of the action performed. There is then no other option and so the person never gives up and thereby he definitely reaches the goal.

While it is svadharma that should motivate people to act, this action should not be with the attitude of aham [I am the doer] or mama [it is for me]. To keep the mind free from these negative attitudes it is necessary that the svadharma is done with the attitude of isvara pranidhana. Isvara pranidhana is the acceptance of a higher force.

The problem often is that we are unable to identify our svadharma. Very few people even question themselves to ask if they are doing the right thing. When what motivates is not svadharnta but raga, then you have the attitudes of expectation and disappointment and this results in stress.

What is the means by which one can know one’s svadharma?

Atmatusti. The feeling of peace and profound satisfaction that results from the performance of the action, even long after the action is performed. Those fortunate to have an acarya [teacher] to guide them, will of course know their svadharma from their acarya.”

source: my teacher

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