Sunday, February 22, 2009

True Conquest

When Alexander the Great of Macedonia, came conquering to India, he wanted to meet the Siddhis (mystic Vedic sages) because he had heard about their knowledge and spiritual strength.
On the appearance of Alexander and his army, these venerable men stamped with their feet and gave no other sign of interest.
Alexander asked them through interpreters what they meant by this odd behaviour, and they replied:

“King Alexander, every man can possess only so much of the earth' surface as this we are standing on. You are but human like the rest of us, save that you are always busy and up to no good, travelling so many miles from your home, a nuisance to yourself and to others. Ah well! You will soon be dead, and then you will own just as much of this earth as will suffice to bury you”.

What a profound statement. Why I chose this thought was because everyday when you open the newspaper or switch on the television news, we are bombarded by news of corruption, greed and avarice. The whole value system is distorted towards having.
The words of the wise men “every man can possess only so much of the earth' surface as this we are standing on” is deeply philosophical and real. That is the only real estate that you need and which gives you a spatial identity. All other spatial possessions are hypothetical in assigning a true value to your being and does not give credence to your existence.

This is the reason why Jesus says:

“What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul?”…………. Mark 8: 36.

The great Vipassana meditation teacher, Sayagyi U Ba Khin, wrote:

“Impermanence (anicca in Pali) is, of course, the essential fact which must be first experienced and understood by practice. The experience of anicca leaves no way out but the path-for the entire phenomenal world is anicca. There can be no hope for the ambitions of the individual, despite all his narcissism and grandiosity”.

Being rooted in our true nature, which has an intrinsic attribute of impermanence in this material world, and having a focus in our transcendence towards divine merger should be the aim of our life’s conquest.

Love to you all


  1. Kurt Vonnegut and Heller were at a function when Vonnegut told Heller that their host, a hedge fund manager, made more money in one day than Heller had made from his entire Royalties for his book Catch 22. Heller said, "But I have one thing he will never have". When Vonnegut asked what this was, Heller replied, "Enough". - Kishore Asthana

  2. Kishore,
    Thanks for the insightful and thought provoking comment

  3. Late have i discovered the pearls hidden in these pages. Thanks much for the lamp.

    An integrated person discovers the other in one self and thus never needs to conquer!

  4. Thanks Maria for the encouraging words. Shall strive to be useful to humanity in this stage of my life through the divine gifts besytowed on me, which are so abundant.