The six accomplishments

The ancient Indian texts talk about six-fold wealth or accomplishments. With this wealth the spiritual seeker remains self-content. He never needs to depend on external factors to be happy. Whatever he needs he already possesses within.

The six-fold wealth consists of:

  • Shama (control of mind)
  • Dama (control of sense organs)
  • Uparati (observance of one's duty)
  • Titiksha (endurance of good and bad)
  • Shradha (faith)
  • Samadhan (concentration of mind)

Mind and thoughts are inseparable. Our mind always contains some or the other thoughts. Very few have control over their thoughts. When they work they think about what is going on at home, What they will have at lunch and so on...and when they sit for dinner they think about their work and what is supposed to be done the next. Such is the poor control most of us have on our though pattern. Shama means acquiring control on the mind. Instead of being slave of our mind making mind your slave.

While Shama is about controlling mind; Dama refers to controlling of sense organs. Our bodily sense organs are always engaged in their respective sense enjoyment. For example, we eat and get pleasure of taste. We enjoy a movie with our eyes. Often our sense organs go out of control and yield sorrow. For example, if you are eating delicious food and someone interrupts you in between you get angry. This indicates lack of control on senses. It is important to note that Dama is not forceful restraint of senses but sublimation of pleasures derived from the sense organs. On the spiritual path Dama is very essential as lack of it makes us equivalent to animals.

Uparati refers to strictly following one's duties or dharma. We all need to perform some or the other duties in the life. Often we refuse to attend them with full heart. For example, people do the office work half heartedly even though the same work is giving them bread and butter. One should follow all the worldly and spiritual duties without fail to get good results. If you do not follow your sadhana how can you expect any good results?

Titiksha refers to endurance of pleasures and sorrows. Life always delves between opposites. Pleasure and sorrow, hot and cold, happiness and unhappiness, light and dark. When we are in good condition we feel happy but when some sorrow comes we immediately become unhappy and worried. We start complaining about bad things happening in our life. It is a fact that when you have happiness unfailingly there will be sorrow. The only way to survive this painful situation is to make your mind and body suitable to sustain such conditions. When you can see happiness and unhappiness as equal you progress on spiritual path quickly. No longer worldly pleasures or worries affect your spiritual practice.

Spiritual seeker must have faith in his Guru and sadhana. Without faith hardly any achievement is possible. Once upon a time a patient went to a doctor and ask for medicine for his prolonged illness. The doctor wrote few medicines on a piece of paper and said - "take this twice in a day for a week and let me know" The patient happily went back. After a week he returned with smiling face. He said that his disease has vanished and thanked the doctor. The doctor said that he must be careful and medicines be continued for few more days. He asked for the same paper on which he had prescribed the medicines before. "Paper? Which paper? You asked me to take it twice a day. I tore it to pieces and took twice a day" said the patient. Such is the miracle of faith.

Samadhana means concentration or single pointedness. For any spiritual practice it is highly important that your mind be focused on the ultimate goal. You may call it meditation or Dhyana but the one pointedness of mind is absolutely necessary for spiritual practices. If your mind is fluctuating it will always take you away from your goal. It is the deep concentration or one pointedness of mind that takes you to the inner journey of self realization.

With these six-fold wealth the spiritual practitioner progresses very quickly on his spiritual voyage.

Bipin Joshi is an independent software consultant and trainer by profession specializing in Microsoft web development technologies. Having embraced the Yoga way of life he is also a yoga mentor, meditation teacher, and spiritual guide to his students. He is a prolific author and writes regularly about software development and yoga on his websites. He is programming, meditating, writing, and teaching for over 27 years. To read more about him go here. More details about his Kriya and Meditation online course are available here.

Posted On : 22 April 2006

Tags : Upanishads Vedanta Spirituality