“You have been blessed with a human birth…” – Shankaracharya

“You have been blessed with a human birth, which is difficult to attain.  Don’t waste the precious moments of our life in pursuit of sensual pleasures.”

Ahh yes.  Sensual pleasures can be so sweet, literally, in the short-run, but do they ever last?  Of course not!  The sensual is so fleeting.  Even when it comes to cake, short-run it is so delicious.  Yet, long-run, what happens?  Disease, perhaps excess weight, discomfort in the body, clouded thinking, addiction, cravings, etc.  Who wants that?!?!

The thing about sensual pleasures is they’re so easy for us to understand because their so called benefit is experienced immediately.  You eat cake and you enjoy it immediately.  You listen to wonderful music and you feel better.  Maybe you do drugs or gamble or have sex and sure you feel great for a moment…but what almost inevitably happens later?  Crash!  Cravings!  Addiction!  Attachment!  Ah, how miserable.

As someone once said, “Virtue is its own reward.”  When we live with virtuous, we care for people, we live with love, and our lives are oriented towards giving.  These ways of being are all long-run investments, and they are enjoyable in the short-run as well.  Some activities, such as exercise or study or meditation, might not always be enjoyable in the short-run, but if we remember the long-run benefits, then certainly we can enjoy them ever step of the way.

Being in a human body, it is easy to enjoy the sensual.  But isn’t the reward so much greater when we embrace a challenge and grow?  We are, after all, here to grow, to learn, to expand, to evolve!  To advance, advance, advance!  And one primary way of describe our development is an ever-increasing value of the long-run and decreasing value of short-run, fleeting pleasures.  When we live with a consideration of the long-run, we make better choices for ourselves and for everyone.  The choice of Love always works, short-run and long-run.  And sometimes, aligning with Love might result in eating cake, yet what it probably won’t result is deliberately going out of our way to eat cake and cookies every evening for dessert.  Love is oriented towards giving, towards sharing, to what’s good for everyone and everything in the long-run.  Love is generosity.  Love is kindness. Love is all the goodness!

So let’s cherish this experience in a human body and live for the long-run!  Let’s live with Love, for Love, in Love, ideally with everyone and everything!  Let us release our attachments and cravings for short-run sensual pleasures and embrace the long-run, truly fulfilling activities that awaken us all more fully to Ever-Present Love, Peace, and Joy.

Hallelujah 🙂

Remember – inch by inch, everything is a cinch.  There is no rush. Baby steps, baby steps, baby steps.  The thousand mile journey begins with a single step.

Gloria in Excelsis Deo!

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