If you are not tired, you will never reach home. Only if you’re tired, will you ever rest. Everything in the world will tire you. Only one thing does not tire you. That is love. Love does not tire you because that is the end, the home. It is not possible to be tired in love.
In fact, enjoyment brings tiredness! Tiredness is a shadow of enjoyment. What puts you on the road is your desire to enjoy. What brings you home is being in love. In your life, you move from one place to another in search of enjoyment. Wherever you saw joy and reached for it, you found that it was further away, somewhere else. So you had to move on and that moving is tiring.
Look at your whole life. A child gets tired of playing with toys and wants new toys. Tired of playing with new toys, they want people to play with, they want new friends. They grow a little older. Their games change. The object of the game changes. They want something more. So it’s like moving from one type of tiredness to another type of tiredness.
As a teenager you looked for something else, not toys. Which is the new movie? What is the new fashion? You want to have the best match for you. You are married. You make a very good couple. Then what? You want to have your own home, children. Those who are single think that married people are better off. Those who are married think that single people are better off.
Some think that people with children are happier. People with children wish everyday that their child grows up quickly so that they can be free. They wait for someone to give them a break, to take care of their children. Everything is tiring.
You move from one spiritual path to another spiritual path, from one practice to another. Sometimes people say, ‘‘Oh, I have meditated for 20 years. I am sick of meditation now. Please don’t tell me to do another meditation. Enough is enough.’’ It’s boring. People have no time. They find it boring to meditate. What to do? Where to go? When is that rest? That solace? That peace? When is that love that is so comforting, so eternal, so blissful? And you cannot rest until you reach home.
You may sit in the path here and there but you cannot be there forever. You may take a break. On the motorway, there is some rest place. On the way, you stop your car, use the restroom, stay a while and stretch. But that’s all. You cannot rest there, or be at peace there. At the back of the mind the drive is there — move on. There is no fulfillment.
It is the desire that tires you — the ‘want’ in the mind. Your mind tires you more than the physical work. If you are willing to do some work, even 15 hours at a stretch, it will not tire you but if you are not willing and you have to work even for four hours, it will tire you.
You have a party at home or you are arranging Christmas decorations. So you may work many late hours but still not feel tired. You feel good about it. But you work in some place you don’t like, you’d like to have four coffee or tea breaks and even then you feel it’s tiring! Don’t do any work at all. Just sit and go on thinking. You’ll be terribly exhausted. For many people, the tiredness and exhaustion comes from thinking and worrying, not by working.
Thinking you need rest makes you restless.
Thinking you have to work hard makes you tired.
Thinking you have worked hard brings self pity.
There is a place to rest. That is the divine, that is surrender and that is love. And you can’t do it unless you get really tired, unless you get sick of everything. You drop down. That is called surrender.
There was a king, an emperor. He attained all that he wanted to in the world, all the wealth; the whole continent was under his control. He thought that this is the world. Thousands of people were under his command, all the wealth at his disposal, all the pleasures at his beck and call. He could snap his finger and get anything he wanted. But that couldn’t get him home. It made him more and more tired.
Then he went looking for some spiritual knowledge. He went from place to place, collecting things here and there, but nothing worked. Everything seemed to work for a while. Finally, he got so tired that he renounced everything. That also didn’t work. Being an emperor didn’t work. Renouncing everything didn’t work.
One day he fell near a tree. He was exhausted of looking for, but not finding, a real master. It’s not easy to find a master. Even if one finds a master, it’s difficult to recognise and let go. So, he finally dropped under a tree and at that moment a dry leaf fell down from the tree.
He was looking at the leaf and that leaf flew to the east when the wind blew east and it flew to the north when the wind blew north. Looking at that, something in him suddenly snapped — the doership. The ‘want’ simply dropped from him. That very moment he realised that that moment is so eternal and he came back home.
Make life that way — become like a dry leaf — agree with what the divine has provided for you, float with the moment; do not regret the past, do not anticipate the future. That is what all the enlightened masters say, ‘‘Keep practicing on your own. When you feel you can’t do any more, that it’s all so tiring, then come and rest.’’ That’s why the places of enlightened masters are called ‘ashrama’, where you come and get rid of your tiredness. ‘Shrama’ means effort. Ashrama means the place where all the efforts loosen up. All tiredness, both mental and physical, vanishes. Even spiritual, you don’t have to strive for it.
Just sit there. There is a candle, there is a light burning for you. You only have to sit under its light. You’re lit. You don’t have to do anything. It’s burning for you. You only have to connect, sit there and feel the presence. Be a part of the divinity, then you will find that nothing can tire you in the world. You will become the source of love. You’re the home. Things cannot irritate you.
When you are tired, small little things can irritate you, push your button, can throw you off balance. Our peace is so fragile that anything, even a phone call, can blow it off. Our peace will be in hundred pieces — just a few words from someone. Fragile peace is of no use. The peace and love in our life should be so solid, like a diamond. Nothing should shake or move it.
Desire, awareness of the self and action all are manifestation of the same energy that is you. Among these three, one of them dominates at a time. When you have lots of desires, you are not aware of the self. When desire dominates, self-awareness will be at its lowest, and that’s why all the philosophers around the world have always advocated renunciation and dropping of desires.
When the awareness is dominant, then happiness dawns. When desire dominates, stress and sorrow result. When actions dominates, restlessness and disease is the result. When your actions and desires are sincerely directed to the Divine or to the welfare of society, then the consciousness is automatically elevated, and self-knowledge is sure to be attained.
You cannot rest when you have to do something which you cannot. And you cannot rest when you feel you have to be someone whom you are not. You are not required to do what you cannot. You will not be asked to give what you cannot give. Nothing is expected of you that you cannot do.
Doing service involves only doing what you can do. And no one wants you to be someone whom you are not. This realisation brings you deep rest. You cannot rest if you have either ambition or lethargy. Both are opposed to good rest. A lazy person will toss and turn at night and be ‘restless’ and an ambitious person will burn inside.
This rest brings up your talents and abilities and brings you closer to your nature. Even a slight feeling that the Divine is with you brings deep rest. And prayer, love and meditation are all flavours of deep rest. The only thing you have to do in your life is to make your peace strong, your love profound and your joy eternal.
Make your home god’s home and there will be light, love and abundance. Make your body god’s abode and there will be peace and bliss. Feel that your mind is a toy of god and you’ll watch and enjoy all its games. See this world as play and as a display of god himself and you will repose in the non-dual self.
via Talks By Sri Sri Ravi Shankar http://talksbysrisriravishankar.blogspot.com/2013/05/tired.html