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The Benefits of Inner Poise

Inner poise at times feels a most elusive quality. How practising meditation can help create more inner poise.

Inner poise at times feels a most elusive quality. The ability to treat difficult experiences with detachment and equanimity is something most people would like to do. However in practise it can be too easy to be swept away by even relatively insignificant events.

Practising meditation can help create more inner poise. In meditation we learn the art of quieting the mind, ignoring thoughts. We also learn that what we are, is not our thoughts. Our real self is something which is deeper than surface thoughts. In real meditation when we silence the mind, thoughts seem superfluous, almost a painful intrusion into the delightful consciousness of meditation. It is here that we can most easily experience the state of inner poise.

The problem is that to enter such a state of meditation at our sweet will can appear very difficult. Intellectually it is easy to affirm the benefits of inner poise, but to embody inner poise in the most trying of circumstances is another matter all together.

A real spiritual Master is one who has mastered this art permanently. A realised master is permanently in tune with his inner self. The outer world is like a thick layer of ignorance covering the essence of a harmonious inner existence. Whatever the world throws up the Spiritual Master is aware of a higher reality that makes a real inner poise possible. To view a realised spiritual master in meditation is to get a glimpse of the physical reflection of inner poise. The physical is perfectly still but the inner poise reflects also both light and peace, it is not just static consciousness but in its own way dynamic.

Sri Chinmoy says that all of his qualities, his inner poise is bar the best and most important quality.

“The thing you have to develop is poise. Your Guru has many good qualities, but his best and by far the most important quality is poise. If I did not have poise in my inner world, by this time I would have gone to Heaven thousands of times. You cannot imagine the amount of suffering that I carry inside my heart. But inside me there is a shield, and the name of that shield is poise. It is because of my inner poise that I am still alive.”

A spiritual master by nature attracts the criticism and suspicions of worldly ignorance. Throughout history Spiritual Teachers who are sincere in offering the world light have simultaneously experienced the criticisms of the world. Vivekananda , Ramakrishna, Buddha and other experienced much adverse gossip, (most of which gets forgotten in the course of time.) Jesus Christ was betrayed by his own close disciple, Judas. The interesting thing is the way spiritual masters react with great inner poise to even the most damaging events. This is epitomised by the way Jesus Christ surrendered to his betrayal and fate. Even though he knew crucifixation was ordained by fate his connection to his Supreme Father left him unflinching and unaffected by the most appalling human experience. Sri Chinmoy says the supreme prayer uttered by Christ was “Let Thy will be done”. To live and practise this prayer requires the supreme inner poise and accept the decrees fate throws with the greatest detachment. In America Vivekananda was subject to false gossip by those who were jealous of the success of a Hindu monk. His advice was to think of oneself as an Elephant. Sri Chinmoy describes

“Simply think of yourself as an elephant. Vivekananda used to say that it is like an elephant going to the market. The elephant's goal is bananas. Dogs are barking and barking, but the elephant has no time to pay any attention to the dogs.”

Again this is a marvellous piece of practical advice for inner poise but if we are sincere it is most difficult for aspiring seekers to implement. As long as we identify with our ego we will always be somewhat affected by the opinions of others. This is why seekers would not waste their time disputing with those who wish only to criticise and debate. But there are degrees of inner poise, to make a sincere effort to develop inner poise will lead to greater piece of mind.

At the same time as being detached from criticism; inner poise also require us to be detached from praise. In many ways this is more difficult because it feeds the ego in a way the ego craves. But if we rely on the appreciation and praise from others, inner poise will remain a far cry.

At times inner poise may appear unattainable but Sri Chinmoy offers this aphorism.

If you have inner poise, 
You will be able to see 
How much pretense 
Not only the world around you 
But also you yourself enjoy.

Excerpt from Ten Thousand Flower-Flames, Part 80 by Sri Chinmoy.

Quotes on Inner poise from: Excerpt from Sri Chinmoy Answers, Part 26 by Sri Chinmoy.


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