The sin

I read quite a perfect explanation of sin in an article on Vegetarianism in Hinduism by Sadaji. I`ll put it in my own words, expanding his definition, here.

Every individual is stuck between a dvandva bhaava, or duality. This applies to the conflict between the mind and intellect too. Humans being gifted with intelligence, are the only species that can discriminate the good from bad. That viveka vichara of the intellect is hijacked by the mind and replaced soon by some ill thought of the mind, fed by purva karma vaasana. So the mind crosses the intellect and the intellect falls prey to the mind. A strong intellect needs to be alert to fight it out at this juncture and not let the good to be replaced by evil. Else, knowingly a person ends up doing something that his intellect doesn`t permit him to do! Thats killing one`s conscience.

This conscience comes back alive after the evil act and wakes up the intellect questioning, asking for a justification! This is what amounts to sin: the mind`s want taking over the intellect`s wisdom. So the evil act leads to the person being punished by the sin! Note those important words from Sadaji. The hell is created due to the sin and is not an outside punishment or something like that. Had it been a strong intellect, there wouldn`t have been a sin to punish us in the first place. What needs doing is to wake up to this conscience that warns the intellect to not die or sleep off making things easy for the mind. The mind needs to be scrutinized every moment in waking, dream and sleep. This is by no means easy or effortless. One has to put lives in this activity to perfect one`s intellect to master the mind. That is sadhana, waking up to the conscience and living up to it. It needs satsanga and tough decisions with oneself and others. One who fails there, fails everywhere. Only then can one even think of walking the spiritual path... people who have taken to the path without being ready, have been routed back into the sinful system to return later!

The path is not for the weak, its a sword`s edge, full of sacrifices for one`s own selfish goal. The seeming contradiction there with sacrifices and selfishness is understood by the wise so: The intellect should be selfish while the mind needs to sacrifice itself unto its own death.
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