The ancient Vedic sages and seers teach us that everyone comes into this world with four seed desires deeply embedded within their soul. Whatever it is that you are striving for in life is based on these four root desires, known as the four Purusharthas.
The fulfilment of these four human pursuits are the pillars of living a satisfying life.
The more aligned your goals and aspirations are with these four goals of life the easier you’ll find your desires manifest.
Moksha - is the fourth of these four goals and stands for final emancipation
Moksha is the most overt of the four purusharthas as the pure desire for self-realisation. It basically supersedes the other three and is the most direct expression of the longing to recognise and have a direct experience of our true nature.
In our essence we are not material beings. The sages have made it very clear that we are not our bodies, we are not our feelings, nor our thoughts. We are pure awareness beyond space and time and we are complete. Even though we live in the world we are not of the world.
Moksha the desire to be free from the burdens of the world, even as you participate fully in it.
Whenever you lead people, whenever you’re initiating change with the aim to help people evolve and grow with the purpose of creating more harmony, fulfilling lives and more peace in people’s heart it’s useful to remember these four desires.
To lead fulfilling and satisfying lives and allow spiritual ripening to occur so that we achieve moksha, we need to integrate and balance all four.
Therefore to set people up for success make sure that these 4 goals of life are addressed in everything you do.
These universal aims influence every thought and deed of our lives. The more consciously aware we are of them and the more we direct them purposefully, the more we’re designing our own destiny.
Purpose, prosperity, pleasure and freedom provide the roadmap to achieving a most fulfilling, joyful and meaningful life. Achieving all four of these desires is the key to lasting happiness.
My teacher once said that dharma is the most important of the four and you want to become the person that moksha chases.
So let’s get practical
Ultimately in my view, as a change maker, your task is to connect people with the freedom of getting to experience who they really are.
Again, These four purushartas can be 4 guiding stars that not only help you navigate your own life, but help you guide others.
And a useful way that I have found to begin working with these four goals is by asking ourselves four questions. One questions for each of the four purusharthas.
Let’s start with Dharma:
Dharma is right action in alignment with natural law, It is about service to the greater good, and the discovery of our true purpose, it is about why we are here.
Once upon a time there was an Indian king who asked a young assistant to go on a long journey in order to acquire a document important to the kingdom’s survival.
This young man set out on his journey with full excitement, eager to see new places and meeting new people.
After two years he returned and he couldn’t wait to tell the king about all his experiences and to offer him all the rare things he found.
Patiently the king listened to his long story and when the young man was finally finished, asked him, "And where is the document you were asked to retrieve?"
Stunned by this question, the assistant realized that he had entirely forgotten the purpose of his journey.
The first question to ask yourself is Why am I here?
In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna counsels a doubting and confused Arjuna: "It is better to do one’s own dharma, however imperfectly, than to do another’s, however perfectly.
This is a strong indication that we each have our own unique purpose to fulfil and express.
To understand and embody your dharma is a life long practice which involves a continuous commitment to self-discovery.
Ask yourself regularly why you’re here and become purposeful about your life in every moment.
The second question is related to Artha - the pursuit of rmaterial resources and wealth that support you fulfilling your dharma.
The question to ask here is What do I need?
Artha can be tricky though because it’s easy to move beyond what we need and we can easily get caught up in the draw and charms of the world and pursue more than we need.
When that happens, when the desire for artha becomes an end in itself without the context of supporting our dharma we’re at risk of afflicting our alignment with our dharma. This will create more unease in our lives.
The clearer we are about our dharma, then easier we can discern what we really need.
For Kama ask yourself What do I want?
Rod Stryker, one of my yoga and meditation teachers once said -
“If you have not chosen the desire that has created your life, you are living by a desire you have not chosen.”
So, know, what you want.
I have found that sometimes people struggle to answer this question for themselves and that there is a way to ease into it by asking yourself the following three questions:
The first question is What do I want to let go off in my life?
The second question is What do I want to keep in my life?
And then you get the third question of What do I want to invite into my life?
Once you know what you really want organise your life around it. As Ramakrishna once said if you want to go East, Don’t go West.
The fourth question is related to Moksha and is a question made famous by the sage Sri Ramana Maharshi
It is the question- Who am I?
I suggest that before going to sleep tonight you journal your reflections on these four questions of why am I here, what do I need, what do I want, and who am I.
As a changemaker allow yourself to be guided by these four questions. You have a message to share and to get people interested in what you have to offer get to know why people are there. Find out what it is they want and need and become interested in who they are.
This will help you in creating powerful messaging that is immediate relevant for the people you’re leading. It will help you to build rapport and relationship with the people around you.
Explore these four goals of life in both your own life and that of others.
It will set you up for living a fulfilled, meaningful and deeply rewarding life.