The fire that burns a child’s finger may cook a good meal for a starving person. Fire, in itself is neither good nor bad. When it keeps us warm, we say, “How good it is!” When it burns our fingers, we blame it. Still, in itself, it is neither good nor bad; it is the use which makes it so. Same is the case with a knife in doctor’s hand or in the hand of a murderer.
This world is neither good nor evil. Each man manufactures a world out of himself. The young who have life before them and are full of valour and vigour are optimistic whereas the old whose many desires are unfulfilled are pessimists. Life is good or evil according to the state of mind in which we look at it.
Each work is fraught with some evil and some good. Good and bad are the two sides of same coin. We are reading ‘The Gita’ in candle-light but numerous insects are being burnt to death. When we breathe out millions of microbes invisible to eye are being killed. Even our existence is crowding out others. There is nothing absolutely good in this world which is a mixture of both good and bad. Like smoke surrounding fire, some evil always clings to work. Only we should engage in a work which brings the largest amount of good and the smallest amount of evil. Arjuna killed Bhishma and Drona. Had he not killed them, evil would have triumphed over virtue and a great calamity would have occurred in the country.
We must do good but without any ulterior motive or attachment always bearing in mind that it is good to do good for our sake. It must not strengthen our ego that we are helping the world and are doing good to the world. The world does not need our help. It goes on as it is. In this sense it is perfect – it has been so since times immemorial – same flowers and same thorns, spring and autumn, winter & summer, pleasure and pain, sun and shade. We need not to spend sleepless night to help the world or do good to the world. By doing selfless good deeds, you are helping yourself to grow out of ignorance and darkness.
Entangled in the worldly affairs, it is difficult at times to decide what is good and what is bad because both are two sides of the same coin. They are different manifestations of the same thing. Potentiality, Power is the same but manifestations are different. The same nerves that carry the sensation of misery carry the sensation of happiness. The only way to stop evil is to go beyond good and evil both. There is no other way.
Life without death, happiness without misery, joy without sorrow and good without bad are contradictions. This world is not all evil or all good. It is a mixture of both. Our evil is of no less value than our good and our good of no more value than that of our evil. Our happiness is not of more value than that of our sorrow. Pleasure is much more appreciated after pain. “Had nights not been dark, who would have praised the moon.”
A thorn is used to take out another thorn and then both are thrown away. Good deeds are to be performed and bad ones are to be discarded. Then transcend both of them because your true nature is far beyond both good and bad and all the dual throng. In the words of our Spiritual Master:-
Strike off thy fetters! Bonds that bind thee down of shining gold or darker baser ones – love, hate; good, bad; and all the dual throng know slave is slave caressed or whipped, not free. For fetters, though of gold, are not less strong to bind.
So whereas bad deeds are chains, good deeds done for name and fame also strengthen our bondage. Any work which helps us to realize our true nature which is All Existence, Knowledge and Bliss is good and any work which makes us forget our true nature is bad. It is Self which is within all of us and which will decide for us what is good and what is bad. Simple reasoning won’t help us because arguments can be presented on either side (good or bad) of any object or work.
The external world is incapable of letting us know what is good and what is bad. So called reformists have not done a great deal of good to the world. Despite their best efforts to eradicate evil, it exists in the world as before. The easiest way to know what is good and what is bad is to open the innermost portals of your Being through meditation. Embark upon the Inner Journey which is very pleasant and blissful. Gurudev Shri Swami Vishvas Ji proclaims, “O Man, wake up from your deep slumber and enjoy the Bliss through Vishvas Meditation.”