The Power of Discernment
Your life is in this moment the result of your choices!
Difficult concept to grasp, is it not? Yet, it is the voice of every single authentic spiritual tradition stating it.
We consider important just those decisions that we think impact our life the most: i. e. school, marriage, children, job so on.
Blinded by ignorance, we fail to see that each and every decision of every single moment is a “brick” which contributes to the edifice of our future.
If you were to think of the present as the sowing time, would you not pay attention to the seeds you plant in your life’s field, knowing that sooner or later the harvest will come?
Discernment, or Viveka in Sanscrit, is considered to be one of the most important qualities on a spiritual path. It is the ability to judge well, to go past the mere perception of something and make just and objective judgments about its properties or qualities. In spirituality, discernment may have different meanings. It can be used to describe the capability to recognize the essence, the divine both inside ourselves as well as in everything that surrounds us; to see things from the divine perspective and not from our limited, enslaved by the ego subjective projections. it is a virtue specific to the manifestations of the energies at the level of Ajna Chakra (the Third Eye).
Certainly, in order to be able to manifest discernment, awareness is essential. In the absence of awareness one’s life is like a dream driven away by senses, with no consciousness whatsoever of one’s true nature, deep emotions, thoughts or feelings. No wonder, awareness is one of the key conditions on the spiritual, self-transforming journey.
Besides the ability to distinguish between good and bad, spiritual and ephemeral, objective and subjective etc., discernment opens as well the door towards the power of actually choosing the beneficial attitudes or actions.
We may have the mental or spiritual concepts of good and bad, but when in the tumult of the situations, most of the times we end up being carried away by the intensity of the energy. After the “emotional storm” looses its intensity, we feel like waking up from a dream regretting our uncontrolled manifestation.
Thus, we may think of discernment as the “eye” of the tornado, which gives us the consciousness to see clearly and the freedom to choose the righteous way of action.
A very beautiful symbolic parable as a metaphor for the power of discernment:
Two mice, in search for food found themselves in front of a big basket of sawer cream. Hungry and greedy, they jumped into the basket not thinking about the dangers. In the basket they have realised they are in danger of drowning. Resigned, one of the mice give up the fight right away. The other did not stop from moving its legs despite its friend’s discouraging words: “Do not waist your time! Anyway we are going to die!” After a while, due to the constant moving of the legs, the second mouse managed to turn the sawer cream into butter and thus survived.
In the moment we choose the good and we do our best in manifesting it, we are helped and we always, sooner or later, succeed. In the Bible there is a verse referring exactly to this: “Make a step towards God and God will make ten towards you!”.
As a conclusion we may say that discernment is a special type of endowment, indispensable for a happy, spiritual, transforming life.
Article by Julia Kolozsvari