DISCUSSION ON KATHA UPANISHAD 1:2:7
A TEACHER OF SOUL IS DIFFICULT TO FIND
This idea of the Soul is not available for many to even hear of – hardly one among a thousand gets an opportunity to hear of the Soul. Rare is he who hears of Soul and understands what he hears. Difficult to find is a Teacher who can teach about the Soul, and a skillful Student who can imbibe such Knowledge. And, rarest of all is the Student who, instructed by a skillful Teacher, finally knows the Soul.
[In the average human being, the searchlights of his five senses are focused on discovering pleasures lodged in the things of this world. Animals are the same, except that they respond only to instinct. Unlike animals, human beings have the power to reverse their sense searchlights from the world back to matters about the Soul. Pleasures, however, are tumultuously powerful, and the average man, finding a comfort zone in them, is reluctant to turn his attention to Soul. It is a fact that material pleasures bring suffering. Even though there is so much suffering in everyday experience, one person among thousands is intelligent enough to seek out the World of Soul. And, among a few seekers, one perhaps may cultivate the strength to understand who he is and who God is.
Among the billions of human beings on Earth, comparatively, only a few become millionaires. These few, however, earn their surplus wealth from the outside. God is already in us – He doesn’t have to be earned the way money is earned. He is already “deposited” in each soul. The sad thing is that we are not even aware of such a Divine Guest in our Inner Temple. Each one of us is like the musk deer that has fragrance coming from its navel. Frantically looking for the source of this perfume, we, like the deer, run wildly in every direction. Failing to find that source, we destroy ourselves by uncontrollably colliding with Rocks of Vice on Sin Mountains. And so, this current verse of the Katha Upanishad laments: Rare is he who hears of Soul and understands what he hears. Compare: Some people behold the Soul in amazement. Some speak of the Soul as marvelous. Others listen to discourses on the Soul and are in awe. But, some hear of the Soul and they understand nothing – they do not react. Also, Among thousands of people, scarcely one strives for perfection. Among those who strive and succeed in Yoga, scarcely one knows God – Bhagavad Gita 2:29, 7:3. Also, Rig Veda urges us to approach that Teacher for Knowledge who has attained the Realm of Knowledge – Tam prichchhataa, sa jagaamaa sa Veda – 1:145:1.]
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