Sunday, July 12, 2009

Beyond Intelligence

Wisdom is the knowledge needed to live a good life. It is beyond intelligence and includes knowledge, understanding, experience, discretion, and intuitive understanding. We sometimes overlap the meanings of wisdom and intelligence, but actually intelligence is necessary but not sufficient for wisdom.
Wisdom involves:
* seeing things clearly
* acting in prudent and effective ways
* acting with the well-being of the whole in mind
* Deeply understanding the human/cosmic situation
* knowing when to act and when not to act
* being able to handle whatever arises with peace of mind and an effective, compassionate, holistic response
* being able to anticipate potential problems and avoid them

Vendanta suggests three varieties of Yoga (i) Karma Yoga (ii) Gyana Yoga and (iii) Bhakti Yoga to achieve spiritual progress and thus gain wisdom.

Karma yoga enhances capacity to work and increase in its effectiveness. It’s a major starting point for professionals like us. Detachment to the fruits of action (anasakti) and yet attachment and commitment to assigned work (duty in the assigned role), consistent with the individual capabilities and interest (swadharma) are the major tenets.

Bhakti Yoga built around devotion, single pointed-ness and a sense of offering one’s self to supreme power or god or higher order depending on one’s faith. It permits development of the faculty of concentration and love beyond ones possessions and near and dear ones only.

Gyana Yoga that permits deeper discriminative powers on the experiences of life, similar but greater and deeper study of the issues we have covered in this course so that the realities of the life and its environment are understood and appreciated with greater clarity and conviction.

For a professional working person one can say that three aspects are involved in work head (thinking and reflecting), heart (feeling) and hands (doing). Each of the three yogas is appropriate for each of the aspects: head for gyana yoga, hands for karma yoga and heart for Bhakti yoga.
Wise people live their daily lives in accord these wise perspectives and wise values. As a result, their actions make the world around them a better place.