Mahabharata Symbolism: Pandu's Negligence of Shooting the Arrow (89)
Mahabharata Symbolism: Pandu's Negligence of Shooting the Arrow (89)

Summary:

Lesson 89 speaks about negligence, what causes it, how to minimize it, and how it shapes our lives. We also speak of topic of bringing mindfulness/alertness into our lives.


  • Topic since lesson 88 was on negligence. This lesson 89, finishes topic of negligence…
  • Mindfulness / alertness
    • Notice how society has gone from multitasking to Mindfulness (especially in corporate situations). Why has the focus changed?
      • In multitasking, we're “not together”. So we don't feel satisfied, but also make mistakes. Miss details.
        • Today's seminars are about mindfulness, because they notice multitasking isn't fulfilling, thus doesn't motivate employees to produce quality work.
      • Can be mindful and do many But must be “together 100%” in any activity we do.
    • Example of how multi-tasking doesn't work: Listening, while thinking of whether what you said was appropriate. This means one is “not together” in their mental processes. It's impossible to enjoy the conversation of have a deep discussion like this.
  • Attachment determines reaction.
    • What is attachment? It's a mechanical repetitive process. It's a result of subscribing to the “comfort zone”. It's closes the mind to learning and asking questions.
  • What does the sage (who cursed Pāṇḍu) symbolize?
    • Sage symbolizes one who is in touch with Īśvara. Even if good person (such as Pāṇḍu) exercises negligence, there are inescapable consequences.
      • Why kind of consequences? Depends on 2 types of negligence's:
        1. Out of assumption (mechanical approximation without taking a moment to check).
          • EG: Pāṇḍu, toddler. Less severe.
        2. Having prior knowledge, but silences it with likes/dislikes. EG:
          • Knowing I'll forget if don't write it down, but says “I'll remember this time“.
          • Knowing this feeling in me, means my partner is uncomfortable, but consciously chooses to not do
          • Floor cleaner knows floor slippery, doesn't put “Wet” sign.
          • Know video-title will invoke negativity, but watch it anyway.
          • Result of all examples above: Guilt. Weaker to say “No” next time. Severe punishment.
      • Both cases, Īśvara's laws of karma (cause-effect) brings suffering.
      • Just playing role of king/parent/teacher is insufficient. What about personal growth?
        • If unattended, your less-then-committed performance affects those associated to you.
  • Other factors that influence neglect:
    • Age EG: Toddler. That’s why punishment 18+ (in any culture).
      • Feedback system. Let’s us learn. EG:
        • Despite getting feedback from body, ignored. Later health problems.
        • Despite getting feedback of uncertain economy, doesn't save for emergency
        • Despite ongoing tension in relationship, doesn't bring it up. Hopes.
        • Despite feeling more stuck/vulnerable in life, doesn't ask for advice.
      • How to know if ignoring feedback-system? Postponement. EG:
        • First learn Sanskrit language, then can study B.Gītā (manual on life).
          • It's like saying:
            • Before cooking a meal, must learn art of cookery.
            • Before type one keystroke, must go to typing class.
            • Before I can share my opinion, must learn to be charming.
            • Before I can conceive child, must learn the psychology of children.
  • Message of Mahābhārata: Even good people make mistakes. They're all good people, but still need to evolve.
    • We have to refine our personality: Duryodhana > Arjuna > Krishna
  • STORY CONTINUES: After Pāṇḍu death, it was thought his eldest son Yudhiṣṭhira should rule.
    • But Duryodhana thought he should rule since (1) he was eldest of Dhṛtarāṣṭra (2) wasn’t blind.
  • Dhṛtarāṣṭra happily agreed to Duryodhana’s ruling, knowing decision wasn’t correct, as Yudhiṣṭhira was more qualified.
    • So Dhṛtarāṣṭra decided to give some part of kingdom to Yudhiṣṭhira, which was uninhabited and barren desert.
      • Pāṇḍavas agreed. Though hard work, turned it into beautiful place.
    • QUESTION 1:
      • Why do you think Dhṛtarāṣṭra allowed Duryodhana to rule, and not Yudhiṣṭhira?
        • He was nursing He felt for years he was deprived of his right to rule.
        • He wanted to live his own dream through his own son.
        • Passive-aggressive behavior: He fought for kingdom through his son.
    • QUESTION 2: Was it right that Pāṇḍavas accepted Dhṛtarāṣṭra's small land?
      • EG: Yudhiṣṭhira was giving license to Duryodhana to act adharmic, each time Yudhiṣṭhira didn't stand up to his unfairness. Thus his power to say “no” weakens next time.
        • Meaning even cultural message of “Let go, just surrender to the flow” isn't always healthy. You have to address appropriately with an educated buddhi.

 

Keywords: bhagavad gita, pandu, ishvara, Yudhishthira, pandavas, dhritarashtra

Recorded 18 Aug, 2020

 

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