Manager and Mind-Control - Part 1: Sri Sathya Sai Perspective

[Note: This Article is based on the Discourses given by Sri Sathya Sai Baba on various occasions. This is not a direct excerpt from any Discourse, but an essay based on His Message on Management and Leadership.]

Modern organisations have become havens of pressure and stress owing to targets, deadlines, extreme competition, ceaseless changes, risks and uncertainties which have become very common rather than an exception. One cannot change the times but one has to change with times. What cannot be cured, has to be endured. One cannot always get what one likes but one has to (at least learn or make an effort to) like what one gets. Instead of complaining about the thorns and sharp stones on the path, people have to learn to beat the hindrances by wearing suitable footwear. Mind is the cause for either misery or happiness in life. The mind has to be properly tamed. Baba says: 

“Sorrows do not flee from us as long as the mind is not at peace with itself; agonies dwell forever within us. Without the tranquility of the mind, any amount of wealth cannot be of any use. Surrendering the fruits of actions with a dispassionate mind alone is eligible to be termed sacrifice”. 

This is not that easy as the phenomenal world presents various challenges and distractions that cause a great deal of confusion. The following aphorism of Baba, presents a blueprint to tackle such complex situations in an appropriate manner: 

Follow the Master 
Face the Devil 
Fight to the End 
Finish the Game

What is the inner connotation of the aphorism?  It is worthwhile to make an attempt to make out the profound significance of the same from the stand point of psychology to appreciate its relevance for Self-Development in daily life.[i] The words such as: ‘Master’, ‘Devil’, ‘Fight’, ‘End’ and ‘Game’ makes everyone very curious as regards their inner meaning and significance. The following perspective explores the inner significance of the same for overall personality development, which, in contemporary society, is of immense significance for any one belonging to any walk of life. 

Mind and Its Control

Where has man come from? He has come from the mind. The one that is born from the mind is called Manuja (man). Therefore, it is the basic responsibility of man to put his mind under control. When man insulates his mind from external influences, he will be able to realise himself in a short time. Mind is a bundle of thoughts and desires. Mind is responsible for both man's bondage and liberation. Therefore, the mind needs to be controlled. It is the mind that is ever in agitation, which is responsible for the restlessness of people. The other components of the mind are Buddhi, Chitta and Ahamkar. The mind is the seat of ever-wavering thoughts. It is called the ‘Buddhi’ when it discriminates (intellect); and the ‘Chitta’ when it stores impressions of the experiences of the past lives. ‘Ahamkar’ is the ego-mind. The impurities that affect the mind are Mala, Avarana and Vikshepa. ‘Mala’ is the dirt and dust that soils the mind in the form of the imprints of the offences committed in this life and the previous lives. It is treasured in the Chitta or the storehouse of memory. As a consequence, the mind cannot reflect the Atmic effulgence. ‘Avarana’ is that which conceals reality and makes man identify with the body. ‘Vikshepa’ is constant wavering of the mind and the projection of the unreal as the real. It is like one mistaking a rope for a serpent in the twilight or dawn. The following is the way to cleanse the mind of these impurities. ‘Mala’ can be got rid of by Nishkaama Karma (selfless action). Hence, it is said: ‘Chittasya Shuddhaye Karmah’. ‘Avarana' can be got rid of by Jnana (wisdom), and ‘Vikshepa’ by Bhakti (devotion). What is it that is responsible for these impurities? The three Gunas or the attributes that are inherent in Prakruti (Nature) are responsible. What are Gunas? The Tamas, the Rajas and Satva qualities are responsible for the impurities. What is it that is responsible for these impurities? 

Mind and its Control
Nature of the Human Mind 

The human mind is compared to a cat. A cat catches hold of its kitten with its mouth and carries it to a safe place in order to guard it from danger. The same cat uses its mouth to pounce upon a rat and catches it only to kill it. So also, the mind could be a benefactor if it is engaged in good and Godly thoughts, while it can bring about disaster if indulged in wicked thoughts. 


[i] It is interpreted in terms of the concepts of personality structure of Freud with the object of enabling the students of Psychology and Organisational Behaviour to appreciate the esoteric inputs in the backdrop of the framework with which they are familiar. 


  1. Sai Ram. I really appreciate your blog. One of the best that I have visited.

    1. Thanks Promod Sharma!
      We are delighted to know that you enjoy reading our blog. Do share it with fellow Sai devotees.
      SSwS Team



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