11 Jan 2012 - QA 19

Guruji, on the path of spirituality which approach is preferable between Vairagya (dispassion) and Josh (zeal/passion)?

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:

Both are necessary. That is why Lord Krishna first aroused zeal in Arjun by saying, ‘Look, what will people say? They will say, 'He is such a coward.’ What is the point in living a life of humiliation; it would be better to die.’
Then he said, 'Is it proper for a Kshatriya to be sitting around like this? On the one hand you are crying and shivering and on the other, you talk like a highly learned person. Does anyone shiver while talking about dharma?'
Lord Krishna further said, 'What kind of a person are you? I considered you brave and daring (shoorveer). And you are behaving like this? You are saying you do not want all this!'
With these taunts, Lord Krishna awakens the passion and fire in Arjun.
Then Lord Krishna goes on to say, ‘All this is nothing. 'Anityam asukham lokam' - this world is impermanent, it doesn't stay. Everything is headed towards destruction. So do not repose any expectations in this world.’
Saying all this Lord Krishna gently brought Arjun into dispassion.
He awakened passion as well as dispassion, and then said, 'Now go and fight.' What a great and fitting attitude he inspired in Arjun. In zeal there is passion to work - combining it with dispassion, the path he prescribed is unique and amazing!