What is Efficiency?
Group Reflection question: What are ways in which you can shift your attitude from focusing on the results of your actions to focusing on your action?
Recognize that we are not the sole doer of our actions. There are external factors that come into play. So do your best and leave the rest. This can influence your work and refine the quality of them. Hence by focusing on the quality and awareness that we put in our work increases. 2nd mindset that is useful is to focus on setting expectations and goals for our own actions and not based on results and usefulness and benefits that help other people and 3rd mindset is like the example of the farmer.
Very little of our effort should be focused on quantity. Rather should be on quality. Quantity is measurable and we can be lost in that which is measurable like popularity, wealth. Quality is immeasurable like faith. When we focus on quality we simplify what we focus on. When we focus on quantity one becomes future oriented, distracted.
Individual reflection question: What is efficiency?
Efficiency is to do something in a streamlined way with a minimum amount of waste. Why does it matter? This matters because for the goal of self development and being independently joyous; serving the most good for the most time to the best of our ability. None of us know how long we can do it except that it is finite. We want to benefit from being Happiness as soon as we can. Grow to that Infinite with urgency. How to be efficient?
1) Prioritize — Right vision, right action
2) Simplify — Simplify thing for our BMI so that we do not waste time that is not in our control or not important to our priorities
3) Organize — Do things that lead us to higher thinking, chanting, class, reflection, meditating. Input positive things towards that growth
4) Review — So that as we change and develop, we can adjust and keep improving
‘Act vigorously with right attitude of mind so that you may avoid all internal waste of energy and learn to grow within’ Swami Chinmayananda.
None of us are lacking resources. We all lack time. Efficiency in a time level. Seekers if we can move away from resources and shift our efficiency towards time, next will be effort. This is the transition…minute to mind management.
Efficiency at work and personal life meant the ability to do most tasks in a minimum amount of time. Not unitasking. But there is lost productivity when you don’t unitask. For example, when you scroll through email while watching TV, one has to mark the important emails as unmarked so that you can fully read it again so as to take action. This meant more work in the end and lost productivity. The most fulfilling aspect of life requires more time and dedicated focus but yields the greatest reward. Being present in a task before moving on to another leads to best results, full satisfaction and more fulfillment. Continue to unitask. Simple yet difficult yet worthwhile.
When we give secularism more importance, we get lost in multitasking. When we give the sacred more importance, we will give importance to Unitask.
Sanatana Dharma is most practical. What’s constantly shared is a framework to evolve. For example
- Tamas, Rajas, Satva ie Lazy to aggressive to calm. How to become calm? Another framework is
- Puja, Japa, Dhyana. Puja requires use of Body, speech, mind. Japa requires speech and mind. Dhyana only needs the mind. How do you engage in Dhayna ? Another framework is…
- Shravana, Manana, Nithidyasana ie listening, reflecting, practicing
Another framework — How do you make decisions — 4 tiers to go through (from most authentic to least)
1. Shruti — Revelations. Those with silenced Ego can hear the Creator’s message and can feel the Creator talking to them. Make the decision based on these revelations.
2. Smriti — Interpretation of those revelations like the Bhagavad Gita which is an interpretation of the Upanishad
3. Sadhus — Sadhachara. One who is vigilant, careful, intentional. They tend not to make mistakes. What would the Wise do? Then make the decision accordingly. We should think, speak and act like them
4. Santushta — follow your gut ie do what you feel like
The framework we are using is Prince Arjuna’s Question (PAQ). PAQ is a framework for us to evolve; for us to live the Gita. PAQ is simple and simplicity leads to remembrance which leads to practice.
Question 1: What is Peace
Quietude. Everyday ,for multiple times a day, close your eyes for a few minutes. Practice quietude.
Question 2: What is Sin
Sin is agitation. We bring this upon ourselves by superficiality. The more superficial one is the more one is agitated. Go deeper within for quietude. Like the ocean; deeper in the ocean there is less motion
Question 3: What is righteousness
Responsibility and it is universal. Responsibilities begins as soon as you know your name. Sometimes we get lost and think I am not Brahmana or have not studied Vedanta. We are just finding excuses to not do the right thing
Question 4: What is prioritization
Clarity — when you are clear of your schedule, you know what is the most important and the first thing to do.
Question 5: What is grief
Forgetfulness. Forgetting your nature, one tends to grieve. This is where Bhagavad Gita begins and ends. Chapter 2, Verse 11. Bhagavan Krishna tells Prince Arjuna that he is grieving for those who don’t need to be grieved for. You can simplify yourself to 3 layers: the Body, Mind, Intellect. Your body started dying the day you were born. Everything decomposes. The mind doesn’t die but moves from body to body. The Spirit is not applicable. The Spirit is not affected by birth and death. Therefore you don’t need to grieve. Those who are wise do not grieve for the dead or living. Those who are wise can understand and appreciate and are less shaken by death.
Prince Arjuna’s Question: Chapter 2, Verse 7:
‘My heart is overpowered by the taint of pity; my mind is confused as to duty. I ask Thee. Tell me decisively what is good for me. I am Thy disciple. Instruct me, who has taken refuge in Thee.’
This is the verse where Prince Arjuna evolves from being a family member to a disciple. Prince Arjuna is sharing that he does not want to do what Bhangavan Krishna is encouraging him to do as he feels pity and compassion for those in the battlefield. Bhagavad Gita calls out Dharma or responsibility. If you follow your Dharma, it leads to Svadharma (contentment). If you don’t follow dharma, it is called Adharma (irresponsibility) or Vidharma (irreligion). Religion is relevant but irreligion is irrelevant. There are 4 practices in irreligion. Prince Arjuna is engaged in one of them and we are engaged in all of them
1. Paradharma — another’s responsibility. Distracted. When you are distracted, you think the grass is greener on the other side.
2. Abhasa dharma — Superimposition. A show and is artificial. It is as if you are engaged in dharma but really it is just a show.
3. Upama dharma — Something like dharma but that really is doing what they are doing in an egotistical way. If I am engaged in dharma, I should be more humble
4. Chala dharma. This is what Prince Arjuna is doing. Which means cheating or complacency. One who is complacent will misinterpret the scriptures according to their convenience.
Prince Arjuna calls himself Samudha. Mudha means foolish. Samudaha is one who worries about the past and is anxious about the future. Prince Arjuna is completely confused and lost in terms of what he needs to do. What should we do? Just start with what is in front of you. Prince Arjuna’s complacency is shown as attachment. Prince Arjuna definitely asks Bhagavan Krishna what he should do. Prince Arjuna tells Bhagavan Krishna that he is Bhagavan Krishna’s disciple and is ready to follow Bhagavan Krishna. A value one should imbibe is Samyama. It means to be disciplined and to direct oneself. Prince Arjuna starts to direct himself as Bhagavan Krishna directs him. Your only focus is on Karma i.e. responsibility or actions. Why? Because your efforts are the only thing within your control and in the present. The results are in the future and out of your control.
One who respects themselves will be inhibited from distractions. You feel lucky for the tool (your body) and for the opportunities to use the tool rather than what the tools can create. You know that the tools and opportunities are presented for you to evolve. Every challenge is to convert a value to a virtue.
Question 1: If efforts are in your control and in the present, how does it align with prioritization and planning which is for something in the future
Think globally; act locally. We should think long term but to reach that long term you need to act short term and do the smaller tasks. Need synthesis of the short term and long term. When purpose becomes singular, you do not need to think so much. When the end is clear you will have more bandwidth.
Question 2: Tapah is a means of burning our comfort zone. Framework of worker, organizer, thinker, leader. If you realise these personality types, should you look out for opportunities and try to achieve the next level at work?
You should find a role that will bring out the best in you; that which will help you grow the most. The evolution is you becoming the best in all the personalities.
RAW of last week: Purpose of the RAW was for you to disidentify from that grief. As long as you identify with that, you will be stuck. No efficiency, no prioritization. How? DIversify. Burn your comfort zone and do/learn something new. This will help you create new memories and let go of old emotional baggage.
RAW: How are you living the Gita in 2 ways.