Contentment is everlasting Happiness
Mahant Sadhu Bhaktvatsaldas
Lord Swaminarayan Bhagwan preaches regarding virtues and religious tenets repeatedly for the self-emancipation of his dependants in His religious scriptures. He commands us to live with contentment - to be happy and live in contentment with what is given by God.
Contentment itself is the everlasting pleasure. A contented person lives peacefully and with pleasure. Although he holds little wealth, such a man can engage himself leisurely in the devotion of God – he never worries about generating extra income and sleeps peacefully at night. Whereas a greedy man runs day and night like a beggar chasing money. Therefore, Acharyashri says: “A greedy man, though possessing sizeable wealth, lives like a pauper. When on his deathbed, he worries if his sons may unnecessarily burn more firewood in his pyre.”
There are people saving enough wealth to raise seven generations who do not have work for their livelihood. Even then, instead of living a life of contentment, they worry about generating enough wealth for the eighth generation. This is the same man who in his childhood days, held nothing in the name of money, lived in a hut and had torn clothes and stale food - today although he possesses wealth beyond anybody's imagination he fails to find happiness and contentment! He has no time for devotion. These are the most unfortunate souls who are ruining their lives and spoiling their benediction by indulging in hoarding money for the family despite possessing all that they need. S.G. Devanand Swami has said: “He inwardly burnt himself in the fire of his wants and depended on many to get his sustenance and money. He impatiently worked day and night to accumulate wealth neither did he spend it nor did he enjoy it.”
Man needs a loaf for his sustenance. One cannot eat more than it. He may possess two-three or five villas and bungalows but he cannot use a space larger than 4'x7' for sleeping. He cannot spread his body in the entire room to occupy it fully. In his die-hard efforts of collecting money, one day he steps in to the burial place winding his entire life's labour on a burning pyre. Nothing that he had put so much effort into saving accompanies him.
There was a greedy merchant, very rich and wealthy. Even though he was wealthy enough to feed his next ten generations, he was worried day and night to treasure wealth for the eleventh generation! This worry and tension adversely affected his body and mind. He lost weight and became very weak. His wife was a wise woman. She believed in solace and contentment. She knew that the ghost of ‘greed and dissatisfaction' possessed her husband. Therefore, one day she arranged a sumptuous thaal of raw meals in a large dish of gold, and asked him to submit the thaal to the saint residing at his hermitage. The saint was a detached ascetic.
The merchant agreed to the suggestion and took the thaal with him to the saint's hermitage. “Mahatmaji! Oh great soul! Kindly receive meals from me. Please make a thaal today for Lord Thakorji and prasadi meal for you from this.” The saint rejected the thaal and said “Shethji! Please take this back. I have got enough meal for today.” The merchant then prayed, “Maharaj! Please keep it for tomorrow.” The saint said in contentment, “Shetji I never bother for tomorrow. You may take it back.” Shethji tried his best, but the saint did not agree. At last he went back home in disheartened mood. The wife on his was aware of the outcome. As she saw him with the thaal, she hastily, asked him “Why did you not give it to the saint?” Shethji tried to explain the situation, “The saint has told me that he had received the meal to fulfil his day's requirement.” Then his wife argued, “You were supposed to ask him to receive it for tomorrow.