Claim the Ability to Choose

By 31 August 2014Articles

Living in the world means a life full of relationships, with people but also with the objects of the world and the thoughts in the mind. Living in the world means a life full of changes, which occur because of the appearance of time, space and causation. Living in the world means a life full of opportunities and choices, which means dealing with wishes, wants and desires.


Tripurashakti‘Living in the world, but at the same time not being of the world’ means playing with and mastering these things, all at the same time, plus gradually growing in non-attachment (vairagya) towards the world and all that it includes. When non-attachment has expanded so much that you are able to set aside everything (for a while), you’ll rest in your True Nature. This means that Yoga (Union) has happened.

Can you imagine a state from which you experience living in the world without being affected by anything that happens around you, not even being disturbed by anything that happens within your mind? This is what is meant by non-attachment. It is a state where love is truly unconditional, because it doesn’t depend on anything, it doesn’t need anything.

Vairagya (non-attachment) is not a practice in itself, but is a result of practice. Which practice do we need to do to expand non-attachment and forever-more rest in unconditional love? In the Yogasutra, vairagya goes together with abhyasa (practice) and both are means to Yoga, to Union (Yogasutra 1.12). Abhyasa means choosing, applying the effort, and doing those actions that bring a stable and tranquil state.

The ability to choose is an immense power that only we, human beings, in this manifestation have. It’s a huge responsibility because it means that within every action you do, within any effort you make, there is a choice. And therefore you are responsible for your actions and their outcome.

If this idea causes some disturbance within you, please try to see it is an enormous opportunity! You have so much capacity, that you, just you alone, can make your life stable and tranquil. How amazing is that! Your state of stability and tranquility is not dependent on the outside world, but that capacity lies within you.

If you gradually learn to rest into this state, you will increasingly be less disturbed and affected by the ever-changing world. You will forever more live life from a place of love. One way to start is to claim your ability to choose for yourself. I choose to do those actions that will lead me towards a stable and tranquil state! I choose to do those actions that will lead me towards the experience of resting in my True Nature!

To live a life based more on choice means developing your awareness of the options and possibilities that life is offering. This hunger means learning to discriminate: What do I want and what do I not want? Is this useful or not useful? Will this lead me towards freedom or will it cause more bondage? Who am I, and what am I not? The result of allowing the answers to come forward will be discriminatory knowledge (viveka), and it will purify your mind.

To claim your ability to choose, to know your choices, to discriminate, and the knowledge that comes from this discrimination, are all the faculty of mind called buddhi. To purify this faculty is what Yoga is all about.

The discriminative knowledge that comes from this purified aspect of mind, buddhi, is the key to the entire science of Yoga, and is the means to liberation.

A way to discover the capacity of buddhi is to find and use your ability to choose and then decide. Start using it! It’s a strength that resides inside you. Choose expansion of awareness, choose growth in discriminatory knowledge, choose to live in peace, in ahimsa (non-harming), choose to know the higher levels of your being, choose to follow the Path of Yoga, the Path of Union, or choose whatever you want to choose!

The result of abhyasa (practice) will eventually be vairagya (non-attachment). And Yoga (Union) will happen when, as the result of vairagya, the emerging changes of the manifestation within and without are temporarily set aside, to rest in your True Nature.

We all have so much strength residing within us. Feel it when you repeat these words internally; “I can do it, I will do it, I have to do it, and I am going to do it”. Claim the ability to live more happily, lovingly and peacefully. Claim your ability to choose.

In loving service,
Tripurashakti Brahmacharini founded by Swami Jnaneshvara.

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