What is the most misunderstood thing about brahmacharya
People generally believe that Varna means caste, but that is not correct. In the strict sense of the word, the classification of society is called Varna-Dharma. Varna is the wrong name and the wrong interpretation for the term "caste". Nobody is perfect, and therefore nobody who does not cooperate with others is satisfied with himself. Man is in the midst of other things such as intellect, will, feelings and energies. Some people have enormous physical reserves, but they are poor intelligences. Other people, in turn, are intellectual geniuses, but physically weak. The other two aspects, i.e. feeling and will, are also unevenly distributed among people. In so far as the intention is for the well-being of humanity, there is general solidarity, for it is necessary to share our comforts with one another. These conveniences do not necessarily have to be objective, but can also be of a psychological nature. If someone is intelligent and has spiritual acumen - which is necessary for the well-being of the population - but has no other skills, he will share his knowledge, wisdom and directional intelligence with others who do not have these skills. This mutual cooperation in society in terms of spirituality, administration, economy and handicraft forms the essence of the Varna system. The classification into Brahmanas, Kshatriyas, Vaisyas and Sudras is not a classification of people into lower and higher values, such as bosses and subordinates, but it is a classification into the functionality of the individual according to his knowledge and skills, with the honorable intention and purpose a perfect, collaborative organization of humanity. This is one way of becoming happy in the world, otherwise we will always find ourselves in a miserable state. Our wishes are classified in this way, and they give - through mutual horizontal cooperation - the opportunity to achieve a corresponding level of satisfaction.
There is the other, vertical side of what is known as the subject - ashrama dharma - or the duties associated with the various ashramas or stages of life. We have misunderstood not only the Varna system but also the meaning of the Ashrama system. Just as we have condemned the classification of the Varna as caste levels, so we have also replaced the classification of one's own stages of life, the path of the Ashrama, with some sort of lifeless religious routine. Neither Varna nor Ashrama are routines. Varnashrama is a division into inner as well as outer phases of life. Outward phases of life are referred to as Varna and inward as Ashrama. The idea behind it is to meet the needs of man in a certain way for the purpose of overcoming all limitations with the aim of moksha or the liberation of the mind. What an honorable psychological organization this Varnashrama is! Not a single point in this classification is unimportant, for nature grips us by the neck with such a tight grip that we cannot free ourselves from this grip without the help of Varnashrama Dharma. We are literally trapped by nature, socially, physically, psychologically, rationally and even spiritually. That is why we have to free ourselves from this grip by gradually withdrawing from nature, as if we were to untie all the knots one by one.
If we knot a rope by the dozen and then want to undo this knot again, we don't start with the innermost but with the outermost knot. The outermost knot must be untied first, then the previous one, and so on, until the first is reached. It is similar in the spiritual life, where the first problem has to be dealt with last, for this problem is more subtle and much closer to things than the last problem, which is much further developed from the cause. The effects must be considered first, and the causes much later. That is why these organizational systems of the Varna and Ashrama bring great joy to every person inwardly and outwardly when the various knots of entanglements in life are broken up on the basis of individual, social, physical, vital, emotional and intellectual needs, etc.
Such a broad field is connected with this little matter of Brahmacharya, through the practice of which we not only influence our way of life and our integration into society, but also put ourselves in a state of strength, attuning to things in such a way that we can use our energies do not waste in all directions, but are supported in a certain way, so that there is no reason to waste our energies on external things in the fulfillment of wishes. Desires must both be fulfilled and not fulfilled. Both statements are correct. But the statements must be understood in their true meaning. Hunger, for example, needs to be satisfied even though hunger is a disease of the body, even though it is the animal in the human body that forces everyone to keep reminding themselves of their body. Can there be anything worse than feeling like a prisoner in your body? You may be locked in prison, but why do you have to be reminded of this every day? Yet this is exactly what hunger does. Hunger is a constant reminder of body awareness. One such bad thing is feeling hungry, but how can you get rid of it? - By following the needs of the body while exercising the greatest possible caution. That is why we dress warmly when it is cold; we go to sleep when we are tired; we eat when we are hungry. We go for walks and do a lot of other things. All of these things are so far from the goal of life and yet they are necessary. We can call it a necessary evil. They are evils, no doubt, but they are necessary. Therefore, even if we separate from the Absolute for this purpose, they must be satisfied. The intention behind the basic and gradual practice of Varna and Ashrama is not wish fulfillment as a bad habit, but its gradual, scientific, systematic and careful fulfillment to the extent that the circumstances allow, in order to ultimately free oneself from it. That is why we do not eat because we want to eat, but because it is necessary to reach a stage where eating is no longer necessary. This requires a background in the psychology of the fundamentals of Yamas, and a clear understanding of this background will help us better practice these fundamentals.
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