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Personality Development: #1 How to Develop Your Personality and Character?

Yogesh Maurya

Namaskaram, I hope you all are healthy and doing well in your life.

Today's article is related to our basic nature i.e. the development of human personality which is inspired by the book 'The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda volume-9' written by Swami Vivekananda.

 What is Personality?

Personality, a word that can mean different things to all of us, but actually seeing it as just one word is a little difficult to understand deeply.

According to the Cambridge International Dictionary of English, 'your personality is the type of person you are, which is shown by the way you behave, feel and think.' Personality, according to the Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English, is the 'whole nature or character of a person.' Personality, according to Google, is 'The combination of characteristics or qualities that form an individual's distinctive character.'

How a person behave, feels and thinks, how he conducts himself in a given set of circumstances is largely determined by the state of mind. Mere external appearance or a person's speech or mannerisms are only fringes of one's personality. They do not reflect the real personality. Personality development in the real sense refers to deeper levels of a person. So a study of our personality should start from a clear sense of the nature of our mind and how it functions.

How to know our mind?

We intend to do many things- make resolutions to develop good habits, to kick certain bad habits, to study with concentration, to do something with a concentrated mind. Very often our mind rebels, forcing us to beat a retreat from our efforts at implementing our resolution. " A book is open before us, and our eyes are open. But the mind has started wandering, thinking about some past events or some future plans."

According to Bhagavad-Gita, the undisciplined mind acts as our enemy, whereas a trained mind acts as our friend. So we need to have a clear Idea of the mechanism of our mind. Can we train it to cooperate with us? How can it contribute to the development of our personality?

The fourfold functions of the mind:

The human mind has four basic functional names- Chitta(memory or subconscious mind), Manas(deliberation and conceptualization), Buddhi(determination and decision-making) and Ahamkara('I' consciousness). It is same mind called by different names based on its functions. The Manas is representing  the sense organs (ears, skin, eyes, tongue and nose) that give the knowledge of objects in the world. If the sense organs are not disciplined, and if the power of discrimination lies dormant, one cannot reach the goal of human life.

If the buddhi is wide awake, and if the sensory system together with the mind is disciplined and controlled, a human being can reach the goal of his life. Another important activity of the mind that concerns personality development is our emotions. If more the emotions are under control, healthier becomes one's personality. Emotions can be broadly classified into two types, attraction and repulsion. Love, admiration, aspirations, sympathy, joy, veneration, pride etc. indicate attraction. Hate, anger, fear, sorrow, jealousy, disgust, shame, etc., are the nature of repulsion. As long as one is entangled with the undisciplined mind, one's personality does not really develop. Buddhi serves as an effective instrument of self-development by controlling the emotions and raising the higher self from the hold of the lower mind.

What is character?

Every action and thought of our leaves an impression in our mind. These impressions determine how we behave at a given moment, how we respond to a given situation. The sum total of all our impression is what determines our character. The past has determined the present. Even so the present- our present thoughts and actions- will shape our future. This is a key principle governing personality development.

Strengthening of will-power and the essence of personality development:

The core of our personality is covered, by five dimensions-

  • Physical dimension consisting of our body and science.
  • Energy dimension which performs digestion of foods, circulation of blood, respiration and other activities in the body.
  • Mental dimension characterized by the activities of mind, like, thinking, feeling and emotion etc.
  • Intellectual dimension characterized by the determinative faculty in a person. This is also the seat of discrimination and will-power.
  • Blissful dimension experienced as bliss during deep sleep.

Personality development implies progressive identification with higher dimensions of personality. Thus a person identified only with the physical dimension without exercising his higher mental faculties, lives.

Development involves struggle with one's lower mind characterized by desires, old habits, wrong tendencies, impulses, and bad impressions. This involves struggle to grapple with one's mind and its old habits, to cultivate new and wholesome ones. But this struggle is the greatest of all struggle in that it makes us civilized in a real sense of the term by manifesting our divinity and thereby our hidden perfection.

Some essential qualities for personality development:

Faith in youself: If you believes that your real nature is the spirit- not the body or the mind then you would be a better individual with strong character.
Think Positive Thoughts: Positive thoughts based on our inherent divinity are essential for a strong character. Go on doing good, thinking good thoughts continuously, that is the only way to suppress base impressions... Character is repeated habits and repeated habits alone can reform character. Furthermore, the only sin is to think of oneself and others as weak.
Attitude towards Failure and Mistakes: If you appreciated committing mistakes and learning from them rather than leading an inert existence like a wall then your personality becomes more effective.
Self-reliance: We are the maker of our own destiny. We are responsible for what we are, and whatever we wish ourselves to be, we have the power to make ourselves.
Renunciation and Service: Selfless service is a paramount means to character development. This, coupled with renunciation of selfishness and desire for the fruits of action.

A noble character and developed personality will ensure excellence in one's chosen field, and contribute to individual and national development.

Spiritual views on religion | Religion of humanity

Yogesh Maurya
Namaskaram, I hope you all are healthy and doing well in your life.

The topic we are going to discuss today is religion. We all keep thinking about religion. Someone talks about one's own religion or someone talks about another's religion. Discussions continue on someone's wrongdoing. There is no one among us who does not consider religion.

But what exactly is religion? Have we ever understood religion fundamentally? 

Religion here refers not to religious texts or beliefs, but to our duties. You must have experienced that as soon as we ask a question on someone, then the person in front immediately says that they should follow their religion first and then raise a question mark on someone. That is, he wants to say that first do your work properly and then accuse others of not working.

We often demand each other not to live up to his religion without knowing what religion really is? How much and what role does he play in our lives? What religion does a person have towards society? Or what religion does a husband and wife have towards each other? Or what religion does a son and father have towards each other? Or how many forms of religion can there be?
Although there are many aspects of religion, but the most important thing about religion is that religion talks about making everyone responsible. Therefore, whoever is in this world has his own religion. To understand this, let us take some examples - such as the religion of the tree is to provide shade, fruit and pure air (vital oxygen). The religion of the river is to flow as a living water. Rain is the religion of clouds. The religion of the Sun is to provide light and energy.

Similarly, the religion of man is to be lending and virtuous. That is, the only religion of man is the behavior of generosity towards the mere creature. That is why virtue is given more importance than karma in India. That is why religion is our virtue, because virtue includes karma, religion, policy and knowledge.
By the way, there are many forms and types of religion. But basically religion makes us realize humanity. Even going on our own religion, suffering is tenacity and life. Because religion is not just about a particular book or the instructions mentioned in it, but good behavior, virtue. So everything that we do, which does not harm anyone, which includes the interest of the whole world, is called religion.

Maharishi Vyas Muni has said in his verse -

संक्षेपात् कथ्यते धर्मो जनाः किं विस्तरेण वः।
परोपकारः पुण्याय पापाय पर-पीडनम्।।
Sanchhepaat Kathyate Dharmo Janah kim vistren vah,
Paropkarah Punyay Papay Par-Peednamm.

That means, O men! In short, we tell you the essence of religion. To do charity is virtue and religion. And to torment others is sin.
In the end, you are requested to meditate, contemplate and ponder over it.


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धर्म पर आध्यात्मिक विचार | मानवता का धर्म

नमस्कार, मुझे आशा है कि आप सभी स्वस्थ होंगे और अपने जीवन में अच्छा कर रहे होंगे।
आज हम जिस विषय पर चर्चा करने वाले हैं वो है धर्म। धर्म के विषय में हम सब विचार करते रहते हैं। कोई अपने ही धर्म के विषय में बात करता है या कोई अन्य के धर्म के विषय में विचार करता है। किसी के अधर्म को लेकर चर्चाएं होती ही रहती हैं। हम में से कोई भी ऐसा नहीं है जो धर्म के विषय पर विचार ना करता हो।

किंतु वास्तव में धर्म क्या है? क्या कभी हम धर्म को मूल रूप से समझ पाए हैं? यहां धर्म का तात्पर्य धार्मिक ग्रंथों या मान्यताओं से नहीं, बल्कि हमारे कर्तव्यों से है। आपने यह अनुभव अवश्य किया होगा कि जैसे ही हम किसी पर कोई प्रश्न करते हैं तब सामने वाला व्यक्ति तुरंत ही कहता है कि पहले अपना धर्म निभाओ उसके बाद किसी पर प्रश्नचिन्ह उठाना। अर्थात वो कहना चाहता है कि पहले अपना काम ठीक से करो फिर दूसरों पर कार्य न करने का आरोप लगाओ।

हम अक्सर एक-दूसरे पर उसके धर्म पर खरे ना उतरने की मांग करते हैं बिना ये जानें कि धर्म वास्तव में क्या है? उसकी हमारे जीवन में कितनी और क्या भूमिका है? एक व्यक्ति का समाज के प्रति क्या धर्म होता है? या एक पति तथा पत्नी का एक-दूसरे के प्रति क्या धर्म होता है? या एक पुत्र तथा पिता का एक-दूसरे के प्रति क्या धर्म है? या धर्म के कितने स्वरूप हो सकते हैं?

वैसे तो धर्म के अनेक पहलू हैं लेकिन सबसे खास बात धर्म की ये है कि धर्म सबको जिम्मेदार बनाने की बात करता है। इसलिए जो कोई भी इस संसार में है उसका अपना एक धर्म होता है। इसे समझने के लिए चलिए हम कुछ उदाहरण लेते हैं-जैसे पेड़ का धर्म है छाया, फल तथा शुद्ध वायु (प्राण दायनी ऑक्सीजन गैस) प्रदान करना। नदी का धर्म है जीवनदायी जल बनकर बहते रहना। बादलों का धर्म है जल बरसाना। सूर्य का धर्म है प्रकाश तथा उर्जा प्रदान करना।

इसी प्रकार मनुष्य का धर्म है उधार तथा सदाचारी होना। अर्थात मनुष्य का एकमात्र धर्म है, प्राणी मात्र के प्रति उदारता का व्यवहार। इसीलिए भारत में कर्म से अधिक महत्व सदाचार (virtue) को दिया गया है। इसलिए हमारा सदाचारी होना ही धर्म है, क्योंकि सदाचार में कर्म, धर्म, नीति तथा ज्ञान सब शामिल है।

वैसे तो धर्म के कई स्वरूप तथा प्रकार होते हैं। परंतु मूल रूप से धर्म हमें मानवता का बोध कराता है। यहां तक की अपने धर्म पर चलते हुए कष्ट सहना ही तप और जीवन है। क्योंकि धर्म का आशय केवल किसी पुस्तक विशेष या उसमें अंकित निर्देशों से नहीं बल्कि सदव्यवहार, सदाचार से है। तो हर वो चीज जो हम करते हैं,जिससे किसी का भी अहित ना हो, जिसमें समस्त संसार का हित सम्मिलित हो, उसे ही धर्म कहा जाता है।

महर्षि व्यास मुनि ने अपने श्लोक में कहा है-

संक्षेपात् कथ्यते धर्मो जनाः किं विस्तरेण वः।
परोपकारः पुण्याय पापाय पर-पीडनम्।।

अर्थात हे मनुष्यों! संक्षेप में हम तुम्हें धर्म का सार बताते हैं। परोपकार करना ही पुण्य कर्म तथा धर्म है। और दूसरों को पीड़ा देना ही पाप अर्थात अधर्म है।
अंत में आपसे निवेदन है कि आप इस पर मनन, चिंतन, तथा विचार अवश्य कीजिएगा।


How to manage anger | Control anger outbursts

Yogesh Maurya
Namaskaram, I hope you all are healthy and doing well in your life.
The topic we will talk about today is anger. Anger is a feeling that surrounds our entire lives. Anger has neither the dignity of knowledge nor the age. No one knows when, where, and for what reason causes anger within us.

When anger is born within us, then immediately our thinking power is lost and darkness falls on our intellect. Our very old and deep relationships also break in a moment due to anger. Our whole life and our relationships get shattered.
For more clarity, you can see in a jail that most of the criminals will be seen to bear the penalty of their moment's anger. But still we are not able to control our anger. Again and again we pledge not to be angry, but again and again we become angry. And gradually after a long time, anger gets ingrained in our habits.

To understand all these confusing things, we have to get answers to some questions like - 

What is this anger really? After all, why does anger take birth? And why is anger not under control?

Although we can understand the answers to all the above questions on many levels, but we will try to understand it with an example. You see a child. He responds when he wants something and at that time if he does not get that thing or if someone intimidates him. The child's response is anger. Because the child is weak and helpless, through anger, he tries to make his elders realize their existence and deserve their own existence.
Now think to yourself that we don't do this even when we grow up? Is anger not the reaction of a child sitting within us? That is, is anger not really just child-like behavior?
See, when our ego is injured or when we are afraid or when we do not get something, then we get angry just like a child. And we know very well that anger and stubbornness adorns children and does not suit elders. But still we do not stop rage like a child.

We know from experience and by looking at others we can tell that nothing is ever achieved by anger. Whether it is respect or property or love or security, none of these things comes from anger. We get all this through our efforts and due consideration.

We only live according to our habits. That is why anger also becomes our habit. We do not stop our reactions even when we want. We consider ourselves as big or capable, but the child within us becomes angry with little reason. That is, anger is really nothing but the name of our child intellect.

If you just keep in mind that you are not a child, childlike behavior does not suit you. Then you will definitely see that your anger is destroyed by itself.
Also, whenever you have anger in your heart, at that moment if you consider the ill effects of anger instead of reacting to anger, then you can definitely control your anger.
Please consider all these things, think, contemplate.

Thank you!

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Condemning is critically not criticism

Yogesh Maurya
Namaskaram, I hope you all are healthy and doing well in your life.
Condemnation and Criticism
In today's article, we will talk about condemnation and criticism. Because in my experience many people are not clear about condemnation and criticism.

See, it is written in the scriptures and, saints and many thinkers have always said that condemnation is a big problem and defect. Because of condemnation not only the love to a person and society is destroyed but also the truth of our own soul is destroyed. And we know that the destruction of truth has been considered the biggest problem and the biggest curse.

Now surely a question must be coming in your mind- 

how can truth be destroyed by condemnation?

See, first of all we have to understand that what is condemnation? What is the real meaning of condemnation? Perhaps you may think that if we do not like someone's work, then criticizing it can be called condemnation.

 But in reality it is not so at all. Because we all have the right to criticize. Rather, criticism is the responsibility of all of us. Because criticism only cleanses society. And the person who criticizes also has to work hard to prove his point to be true and he may have to explain his point on many levels. As a result, the person criticizing also becomes strong and influential from within himself over time.
Then the question is- 

What is the difference between criticism and condemnation?

See, criticism is always about a person's work, whereas condemnation is about a person's personality. The purpose of criticism is to push someone forward, but the purpose of condemnation is to pull someone back. Behind condemnation are expressions of hatred and criticism is followed by feelings of compassion.

'That person did wrong.' - It is criticism to say.
'That person is wrong.' - It is blasphemous to say.

We need to think deeply about this. Because any human being can change at any time. Today a person doing wrong and unfair can also become a monk or a gentleman tomorrow. You already know many examples of this.
We have to understand that someone's mistake or any inappropriate act of someone becomes the dirt of his soul, the dirt is not the quality of that cloth. That is, it is not bad to see fault in someone's work but it is unfair to see fault in someone. Because to see or show defects in a person's personality or existence is called condemnation.

Also, it is not necessary to give proof of condemnation. Because the evil of an action can be shown but it is not easy to show the good or evil of the soul. This is why we have great fun condemning someone. By proving someone bad, we prove ourselves good in our own mind. And we do not have to work hard to be good and do good.

See, condemnation gives pleasure to our ego. This is why we get addicted to condemnation while condemning. But we must think about what harm we have from condemnation.

When we become a habit of condemnation, we start resorting to more and more untruths. Due to which, the truth is slowly destroyed from our heart. In addition, condemnation has both effects. The reputation of the one we condemn decreases. And the soul of the slanderer breaks.
In the end, I just request you to think, meditate, contemplate all these subjects.

Thank you.

Cause of depression and anxiety

Yogesh Maurya
Namaskaram, I hope you all are healthy and doing well in your life.
In today's day-to-day life, people are struggling with many types of negative things. Which includes fear, sorrow, anxiety, depression and many other things. And sometimes these things also become the reason for their suicide.

According to an estimate by the World Health Organization [WHO], approximately 1 million people worldwide are dying by suicide each year, representing 1 global death every 40 seconds. According to the WHO it is also predicted that by 2020 the death rate will be 1 every 20 seconds.

This is not a small thing. We cannot ignore it at all. Because 'Our life do not only belong to us. From our birth until our death...We are tied to others. In the past and in the future, And with every crime and very good act... We define our future'.

Now the question must be arising in your mind that why does a person commit suicide?
See, if we just look at it as a life, rather than seeing it as a special person, one of the most fundamental reasons is simply that "a human breaks from the inside". The result of which can be suicide, depression or any other disease. But life does not break.

So we just have to see it as a life. Not as someone you loved or who was close to or loved by you. Because when someone commits suicide or someone dies, you get emotional. You feel that this is the end of the world but after the next few days you again return to your normal life. Everything starts running almost the same way and you forget about it. This process continues like this again and again.

So instead of seeing it as a person, you just see it as a life that 'why does one life do this?'
Many aspects of this may be possible. But a fundamental aspect of it is that 'life experience is not very pleasant'. Because you have kept your pleasant experience captive of success or money or relations or needs or many other things in the world.

If people fail in something, they will commit suicide. If a love affair breaks up, someone will commit suicide. If someone loses his wealth, he will commit suicide. Because you are unfortunately gathering your wealth, your house, your relationship, your family, your work, your position, your name etc. together and carry it.

See, the life inside us always wants to live. He always wants to get the highest peak. But life is always full of gaiety and enthusiasm. You are mentally vulnerable to depression.

Today you are entangled in the logical dimension of your mind. Your understanding says one thing, but your reasoned thinking says something else. Along with this, the repetitive nature of your daily routine life can also be the cause of depression.

See, you have to understand this. Too many argumentative moments are moments of suicide. Depression means that 'you are gradually committing suicide partly'. If you give logic too much space in your life, then your vivacity will decrease. You should only apply logic to the physical aspects of life. If you apply logic to life itself then you will be a victim of depression.

If you delete everything that means something to you. And then ensure your life rationally. Then you will definitely be a victim of depression.

See, the most valuable thing in your life is life itself. 'Where do you live, what do you wear, what do you eat, what vehicle do you have' are all the accessories of your life. You are alive right now, this is the biggest happiness.
You have to understand clearly that there is no benefit from being unhappy, depressed or ill. There is an advantage in staying happy and happy. And even if there is no benefit then what is the difference.
Thank you

Importance of Yoga in our life

Yogesh Maurya
Namaskaram, I hope you all are healthy and doing well in your life.

It was about 10 days ago. An elder brother of mine (Prince Ranjan Barnwal ji) asked me to participate in an essay competition related to yoga which was organized by him. But due to extreme busyness, I could not participate in that essay competition. Therefore today on the occasion of World Yoga Day, this article of mine is related to yoga itself.
By the way, I am not a specialist of yoga at all. But at whatever stage I have understood yoga in my life so far, I am trying to put it before you.

Most people of this world feel that yoga means doing something special with their body. But I think there is no need to do anything to be in yoga. But if your body is in bad condition or you are sick then you can work on it. Otherwise there is no need to do anything with the body.

There are many ways of looking at yoga. But in my view, yoga means that we are experiencing our life beyond our physical limits. Because our materiality is a collection. This is something that we have collected over time. By collecting something, you feel that you are there and you limit yourself there. Therefore, this is the basis of ignorance in the world.

But at the level of experience there are many ways to go beyond this. These tools are called yoga practice and the science behind it is called yoga. So let's try to understand some of its points -

Air is the most dynamic element in our body composed of five elements. Because every 1 minute we breathe about 12 to 20 times and release it. So it is definitely important for us what kind of air we breathe. And we all know this too. But how and how much we breathe in consciousness is equally important. Therefore it is necessary that we breathe better and while being in contact with nature, we should do something that makes the breath in a dynamic state.

You can see that when the body feels that the air is pure and vibrant, the body breathes in a different way and there is transaction and purification inside the body. So it becomes very important especially for the youth. Because it increases the integrity and strength of the body.

Furthermore, we can only do yoga in our mind, in our body, in our emotions or in our energies. Or we can also do yoga just by the way we sit and stand. Because in the process of development of our body, our brain developed only after our spine went from horizontal to vertical. So whenever possible you just have to sit upright while being alert. With this, not only your posture but your way of thinking, seeing and experiencing life starts to change gradually.

So yoga always pays attention to rest of the limbs. Because our basic health and how long we live and how our body works, it depends on the secretions and functions of these organs.

Lord Shri Krishna has also said in Srimad Bhagavad Gita-
 "Yogasthah Kuru Karmani"
 That is, 'Settle in yoga and then work' (Perform your duty and abandon all attachment to success or failure. Such equality of mind is called Yoga).
Thank you