"Reflection, Reaction and
Resound". This is a phrase often used by
Swami. What does it mean? Let us examine.
Man is capable of being
conscious of a world outside himself. In the
world outside all kinds of events happen, some
of which affect the individual while others do
not. Whether or not there is an effect on the
individual depends entirely on the inner
personality of the person concerned.
Let us say that A is harassing B. What really is
happening is that B is paying for his past
misdeeds and that A is the agency or instrument
employed for the "settlement of Karmic debts".
Swami gives _expression to this as follows:
God is not involved
in either rewards or punishments. He only
reflects, resounds and re-acts! He is the
Eternal, Unaffected Witness! You decide your
own future. Be good, do good and you get
good in return; be bad, do bad and you reap
bad results. Do not thank or blame God.
Thank yourself or blame yourself.
In the Gita, Krishna
says pretty much the same thing.
In the example just considered, B thinks that A
is being cruel to him. This might seem to be
true but only superficially. From an overall
perspective, however, the cruelty inflicted by A
on B is merely a reflection of the cruelty
earlier visited by B on others. Thus what
happens in the outside world is in this example
a reflection and a delayed reaction of some evil
that was within the person, i.e., B, to start
with - the inside is reflected from the outside
(with a delay though), and appears as a
One might concede the concept of reflection,
reaction and resound in cases like the one cited
above. But consider now an entirely different
kind of case where the person is not directly
involved. A man sees a snake swallowing a frog;
he is upset and angry with the snake. Where is
the question of reflection etc., in this case?
To understand that, let us suppose that this man
is an astronomer and discovers that one galaxy
is swallowing another - galaxies are known to do
This astronomer is happy that he has made a
discovery and even publishes a paper on it. In
both instances, one entity is annihilating
another but in one case the man/observer is
angry whereas in the other he is happy. Where
did this anger and happiness come from? Did, for
example, the gobbling galaxy part with a bit of
its joy, (that is, if it did feel some joy)? In
both cases, the person or the observer was
reacting based on what was within him. As
Swami often says, As is the thought, so is the
In the world of computers, there is a phrase:
What you see is what you get - WYSIWYG. In
spirituality the rule is: "What you see is what
you want to see!"
So Swami always emphasizes on cultivating good
thoughts. He says,
"For everything good
and bad, it is your own thoughts that are
responsible. Therefore, we should entertain
only truthful thoughts, then travel to the
peace that is beyond thought. As is the
feeling so is the experience, for everything
is a reflection of the inner being. From
whence do you get peace? It isnít got from
the external world. Peace originates from
within. When a person is beyond thought, he
is at peace."
To start with, letís start
with cultivating selfless thoughts and
developing a sense of compassion in us.
From Heart to Heart.