Children, three things are essential in life: knowledge, health and wealth. We think that if there is wealth, we have everything, but what if we lose our health? We do not know the value of good health until we lose it. Even more important than health and wealth is knowledge. In spite of having health and wealth, if we lack right knowledge, our actions and thoughts will be without discernment. This will eventually lead to destruction.
Even the prime minister of a country can lose his position by uttering one indiscriminate word. This can start a huge upheaval in the country. Thousands of citizens can even lose their lives. So, knowledge endowed with good judgment is essential. Even if we lose our health and wealth and life becomes filled with hardship and suffering, if we have right knowledge it will help us to face any obstacles and challenges with happiness.
Once there was a very righteous king. He loved all his subjects as his very own and protected everyone equally. Because of his virtues, people loved him very much and worshiped him like God. His popularity and fame spread in all directions.
The neighboring kings were very jealous and organized various plans to destroy him. Offering fame and name and many monetary benefits, they bribed the king’s minister. With his help, they then attacked the righteous king, defeated him and locked him in a dungeon. They did not give him any special privileges; he was treated like any other prisoner. But even there, the king spent his days happily, without any mental suffering. Observing this, the enemy kings were totally disappointed. One day, they asked him, “Even after losing your power and wealth and spending time in prison, you don’t seem bothered a bit. Why is that?”
The king answered, “You can defeat me in war, imprison and torture me, but it is up to me to decide whether I am sad or happy. Because I have gained true knowledge, all my hardships are insignificant. I know who I am, and I know the nature of the world. Through this knowledge, my mind is completely under my control. You can never stop that.”
Children, first we must be aware of our own nature and nature of the world. Once we possess that knowledge, we can easily overcome any situation in life.
By Amma, Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi