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Inner Joy

By Karmayogi

Success makes for happiness; failure gives us sorrow. Sri Aurobindo says success and happiness are sought after by lower human emotions. Pious people do their duty regardless of success or failure. They are invariably happy, rather filled with a sense of contentment. There are other people who are always found filled with JOY. They spread joy around. Such people are found at all levels of life. Inner Joy, permanently established, is one symptom of a realised Soul. We do not hear of pensive Saints or other religious people who are depressed. Invariably they are happy. Some of them have a characteristic sweet smile.

Man does cherish money, popularity, status, power etc. It is equally true that man values inner joy more than all these attributes. When they are presented as alternatives - whether you need joy or wealth - how many will want joy is a question. This is our religious teaching or cultural tradition.

But there is one more dimension to the inner joy. To all attributes of life and creation - Time, tapas, money, knowledge etc - we know of, Sri Aurobindo has added a new dimension. Such a dimension is also here for the inner Joy. That inner joy includes all the higher attributes of life, e.g. power, health, money, status, wealth, etc. When I say we can invoke the spirit, without our knowing it we invoke the higher dimension of human traits. We know of goodness that is the opposite of evil. What Sri Aurobindo says is Self-Existent GOODNESS. It has no opposite. It exists in the plane where there is no evil.

South Indian rivers are seasonal. They flow during the monsoon season only. In North India several rivers are perennial, which means they flow all the time. The JOY that I speak of is spiritual JOY. I said it is inclusive of all human needs, comforts and affluence. Invoking the spirit, one attains to INNER JOY. If he is not entirely successful, at the next level he attains material Prosperity. Hence I called my column ‘‘Spirituality & Prosperity''.

There is one more dimension to this. I rarely speak of it. It is called Spiritual Prosperity, generally difficult to attain. It is attained by a Spiritual discipline. The only such discipline here is NOT to take egoistic initiative. No initiative of ours is free from ego.
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