On 26th July 2019 ITM got this marvelous opportunity to welcome in our campus Swami Avyayananda Saraswati,
a pioneer in the knowledge of Vedanta. His work and devotion in educating youth like us about Indian cultures and
scriptures is acknowledgeable and remarkable. He gained the powerful knowledge of Vedanta under the guidance of
Swami Tejomayananda Saraswati and now under his spiritual guidance many lives has been ameliorated. As part of
Chinmaya Mission, Swami Advayananda has taken spiritual renaissance movement to every corner of the world. He
believes in the principle of ‘Samast Jan Kalyanam’ and that no one should be deprived of the illuminating knowledge
of Vedas, Upanishads and Geeta.
He started with citing beautiful verses of Veda. His way of comparing life with a game is peculiar and interesting. As the
topic said ‘Game of Life’, he started with various aspects of a game. Coordination, strategy, planning, rules, discipline,
determination, sportsmanship are few to be named. But a game can be categorized into three main aspects i.e.
The Player: The starting point is where the player is right now in the present. The rules decide how the player reach the
final destination which is the ultimate goal. But it’s important to understand that not all players are equally competent
and not all are performing the same task. Also all the players are not there by choice; some are there with compulsion.
And those who play by choice does not necessarily play for the love of the game. There are several factors of inspiration
for a player to participate in a game such as; money, fame, certificate etc.
The Goal: To win a game (football) one need to both defend and score. Not to let the opponent party score and score the
maximum from our side is the best strategy of a game. For those who are in a game out of compulsion, the best strategy
is to give the best and make the most of it (be a part of victory). But it is important to understand that one may seems to
be kicking the ball away from goal but ultimately the player is targeting the goal.
The Rules: Rules are inevitable for a game. It is an integral part of the game as it helps to decide the result, to ensure fair
play, to provide equal opportunity and to ensure discipline. The rules are meant to make the game more challenging and
complicated. A tournament is enjoyable only if there is competition and win is ensured by overcoming all the challenges.
The Player: We are players in the game of life, partly by choice and partly out of compulsion. The most quality decision
for those who are there by compulsion is to participate and give their best and grab all kinds of opportunities coming on
their way. Every adversity of life can be converted into an opportunity. It is up to us how we use these opportunities.
The Goal: Now the important question is ‘What is goal of life?’ To answer this, first we need to understand that life is a
package deal. Everything comes with a price. Sorrow, struggle, complications, challenges make life more interesting and
worthwhile. The goal of life should be achievement of happiness in every moment of life. For most of us, happiness is
conditional. A conditional happiness is not the true form of happiness. One should not think that he/she will only be
happy after achieving certain goal but instead one should understand that the ‘goal’ should be to be happy. Happiness
should always be unconditional. One should not live life out of compulsion but by choice. People who are successful
chose to succeed in every condition.
The Rules: If there is no pain, there will be no gain. Sorrow and pain in life is inevitable. Hence, in life when we follow
rules, we increase our ability to succeed and these rules make our life more meaningful. As one cannot enjoy wealth
if people around him is poor, similarly, one cannot enjoy happiness if people around him is unhappy. Sharing, teamwork
and cooperation are three main rules of life to be followed to stay happy. True joy is when the whole team wins. Solo
player doesn’t win the game. Teamwork is important in order to ensure victory.
In the words of Swami Avyayananda Saraswati, “Rules are meant not to bound us but to set us free”. True goal of life is
achieved when we align our small goals in line, remaining in the framework of rules. Then and only then we get the true
satisfaction of achieving the goal.