Put it in perspective, dude!

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By popular demand, here is a quick summery of the last Thursday’s discussion at Krishna Lounge.

Unless things are put in perspective, they can not really be understood and thus can not really be discussed. Once I witnessed two people vehemently arguing over the statement, “all you need is love.” One thought the statement was true while the other person insisted that we need other things such as food. The concept, “love,” obviously has to be placed in context so that it could be understood. Thus I found the following excerpt from the New Testament excellent.

“Yes, and for this very cause adding on your part all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence; and in moral excellence, knowledge; and in knowledge, self-control; and in self-control patience; and in patience godliness; and in godliness brotherly affection; and in brotherly affection, love.” 

Peter, the speaker of the above quoted statement, was addressing a group of people who were managing to resist materialism, which encouraged and made Peter happy. Thus he invited the people to increase their diligence in the matter of avoiding materialism and further focusing on their spirituality. I think it is beautiful how he put things in perspective and thus qualified the ideas he was promoting. Thus, according to Peter, faith is qualified by moral excellence. In other words, faith in and of it self is neither good or bad – it really depends on whether it is moral or not. Immoral faith, even though arising in a spiritual or religious setting, is not good. Moral means good, and immoral means evil.

He further says that knowledge qualifies moral excellence. In other words, mere conviction about something does not make that thing good or morally excellent. That matter should rather be defined by knowledge.

Those who know the first thing about yoga, know the basic rule that knowledge can not be had without self-control. Self-control does not mean much without patience, and all that should be done for the goal of “godliness.” Godliness without brotherly affection is a weird mutant. And, at the end, this should produce love. Such love is a real thing.

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