By- Devakinanda Pasupuleti
The Yogasūtras of Patanjali (200 B.C.E) describe santosha (sukha) as part of the second step of yoga, i.e., niyama. It is defined as being content with whatever one gets and not desiring more. The contentment comes with cognitive knowledge than from materialism and hence, understanding the underlying reality and truth of that subject matter. When we have negative emotions rising from discontentment, greed, selfishness and anger, life is going to be miserable no matter how much one has.
From time immemorial, our ancient rishis, seers and sages taught us tolerance toward all people even if their doctrines differ from ours. Ṛishis taught us that 'there is only God and we can worship Him in whatever form or method'. That's why we have 330 millions of gods and goddesses and every one and every family has their own ishṭaḋevaṫa (desired deity). In our schools, in history classes and text books, they teach Reality and Satyam (the Absolute and the ultimate truth). In our schools, students of different faiths sit next to each other and play together. That's because of our teachings. We did not have hatred toward each other because we practice different religions. Same with the temples, churches, and mosques in India; they are all side by side and people go and worship peacefully in respective places. This comes from contentment and tolerance. We may have a few quarrels, fights here and there from disagreements but not as a routine occurrence.
One observation about the ongoing dispute about Kashmir state border between India and Pakistan from the day of Independence and thanks to the crooked British motto of ‘divide and rule’ policy and before they left our nation, they injected that poison in our bloods and it is growing like a cancer. This is surmounting to all high levels because of purely political, religious motives and is constantly ignited by the politicians, and the religious leaders for their selfish reasons and they are the termites to the human society everywhere on our planet among others crooks like lawyers, insurance and drug companies with limitless greed and selfishness.
Our spiritual teachings are towards tolerance, contentment and how to live without hatred, selfishness and jealousy. Ours is a land of 'Sukhavardhana Bhūmi'.