Verse 5


5. Take responsibility for yourself. You have created your present situation. You can redeem yourself through knowledge and the right effort. In every aspect of life you have to do it yourself. You cannot delegate it to anyone else. Development cannot be by proxy. If you want to improve your health and fitness you have to exercise and eat healthy. To develop the mind you need to cultivate positive emotions and avoid negativity. To educate yourself you have to study and expand your intellect. But when it comes to the spiritual field you pass the buck on to God!

You are your own friend when you use your personality – body, mind, intellect – towards your own progress. You become your own foe when you use the very same equipment to go downhill.

Shakespeare said,

“Making a famine where abundance lies,

Thyself thy foe, to thy sweet self too cruel.”

Verse 6


6. In verse 5 the word ‘atma‘ means the individual personality, the body-mind-intellect. Here the same word means Self, Spirit.

A friend cares for you, does good to you and gives solace, comfort and joy. This is the nature of Atman. When the body, mind and intellect are controlled Atman is a benefactor. When they are not controlled Atman appears inimical. It is never really an enemy.

Make Atman your friend and ally by controlling the body and mind. The greater the control the more help you seem to get. Control is the key. If you have no control the body becomes diseased, the mind depressed and intellect confused.