SA busi­ness lead­ers will again ben­e­fit from the teach­ings of philoso­pher Swami Parthasarathy

The Star Early Edition - - VERVE -

SOUTH Africans are anx­ious about the fu­ture, given the nu­mer­ous po­lit­i­cal and eco­nomic up­heavals we’ve en­dured re­cently. What we can be cer­tain of, how­ever, is that by the law of karma, what is sown will be reaped.

One of the great­est philoso­phers of our time, Swami Parthasarathy, will ex­plain the law of karma dur­ing his an­nual lec­ture tour to South Africa in Au­gust, and will also look at how to achieve a work-life bal­ance, how to make re­la­tion­ships work, and how to op­ti­mise busi­ness while min­imis­ing stress.

“What­ever ac­tion you per­form it will meet with the con­se­quences that it de­serves. If you rush into an ac­tion with­out the use of a dis­crim­i­nat­ing in­tel­lect, it will meet with the re­sult it de­serves and not what you de­sire.

“Your past ac­tions de­ter­mine your present des­tiny. Self­ish ac­tion leads to suf­fer­ing and sor­row, while un­selfish ac­tion en­gen­ders peace,” says 90-year-old Parthasarathy about the law of karma.

Parthasarathy has been vis­it­ing South Africa since 1986, dis­sem­i­nat­ing the an­cient knowl­edge of Vedanta from In­dia, an an­cient phi­los­o­phy that dates back sev­eral thou­sand years.

It’s a sci­en­tific sys­tem of prin­ci­ples that gov­ern hu­man life – the di­gest of great thinkers and philoso­phers over count­less gen­er­a­tions. Its time­less prin­ci­ples tran­scend cul­ture, race and re­li­gion, mak­ing Vedanta uni­ver­sal in its ap­pli­ca­tion.

The phi­los­o­phy trains one to de­velop the in­tel­lect, the hu­man fac­ulty of rea­son and judg­ment. Thus Vedanta is a user’s man­ual for life that ex­plains the hu­man con­sti­tu­tion and how to use the body, mind and in­tel­lect for max­i­mum peace and pros­per­ity. Self­less­ness is key to Vedanta. “One’s ego is ac­cen­tu­ated when the em­pha­sis is on one’s in­di­vid­u­al­ity. It be­comes dev­as­tat­ing when your ac­cent is con­tin­u­ally self­cen­tred, self­ish.

The more one’s at­ten­tion is on one’s own wel­fare and not on oth­ers, you would be dis­turbed, men­tally ag­i­tated.

“Also, suc­cess of any ac­tion would be im­paired,” says Parthasarathy.

Dur­ing his lec­tures he will ex­pound these found­ing Vedan­tic prin­ci­ples, fo­cus­ing on self­man­age­ment, and how to ef­fec­tively bal­ance the needs of busi­ness and fam­ily. “The in­abil­ity to main­tain proper bal­ance be­tween work and re­la­tion­ships stems from an un­con­trolled mind.

While at work the mind wor­ries about home and while at home it wor­ries about work. This ram­bling of the mind causes stress and dishar­mony,” he ex­plains.

Apart from con­duct­ing lec­tures around South Africa, Parthasarathy can be found bowl­ing a wicked off­spin and wins many MVP (most valu­able player) awards com­pet­ing against play­ers less than a third his age.

The se­cret to his suc­cess lies not in tech­niques spe­cific to the game, he says, but in his dom­i­nant pre­oc­cu­pa­tion, the knowl­edge of Vedanta.

“The knowl­edge of Vedanta teaches you the art of play­ing the game of life. Life is just a big sport, be­tween you and the world. Some­times you beat the world, some­times the world beats you.

“But then, be a sports­man,” says Parthasarathy, who will be play­ing cricket with the Vedanta Academy cricket team in Dur­ban in Au­gust.

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