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Is Working Out Greedy?

Harry Haller

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I always find the answer to such questions lies in the immediate mental reaction inside, if you think it could possibly be greedy, then you are doing it for the wrong reasons, ie, to make your body more attractive for the sole purpose of meeting women, if you think there is no reason why it should be viewed as such, and you just seek validation, then your probably ok!

I have learn't that although the five thieves are there to draw you away from the truth, in some respects you have to make your peace with them, they also exist in some way to drive you on, the danger exists in allowing their presence to be permanent.

For example, if you are on the breadline, and go to a job interview, this is possibly the wrong time to view your fellow applicants with love and a desire to assist, although, yes Guru Nanak probably would have, but, we are not gurus, we are men. A small measure of ego, pride, and greed would probably not go amiss in assistance for securing paid employment. Similarly in a marriage, I think we would all be hard pressed not to admit to some lust for our wives, however to have lust for anothers wife would be hugely wrong.

Is it possible the five thieves are like alcohol. If we take alcohol for medicinal purposes, then there is no question of any offence taking place, as it is not being ingested to get drunk, so I would say work out all you want, as long as your motives are pure, I would not say there is any greed.

I thought I would write this without my wife's help today, So I have probably got it all wrong, but if I have, I am sure someone more able will be able to also answer your question
 

Randip Singh

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May 25, 2005
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If you have the desire to work out, is it greedy? If you want to get stronger and gain more muscle, are you being greedy?
No.

Every Sikh must keep mentally and physically fit (as well as spiritually).

This is the doctrine of Miri Piri, Shakti Bhakti and is about keeping your mind and body in balance.

The Chinese call this Ying and Yang.
 

BhagatSingh

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Apr 25, 2006
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I always find the answer to such questions lies in the immediate mental reaction inside
Yes, I agree. My advice would be to learn to pay attention to the thought patterns that arise when you think about things, working out or anything else.

For example, if you are on the breadline, and go to a job interview, this is possibly the wrong time to view your fellow applicants with love and a desire to assist, although, yes Guru Nanak probably would have, but, we are not gurus, we are men. A small measure of ego, pride, and greed would probably not go amiss in assistance for securing paid employment. Similarly in a marriage, I think we would all be hard pressed not to admit to some lust for our wives, however to have lust for anothers wife would be hugely wrong.
I think getting rid of the 5 Vices is the highest of all states. and when you are in that state you will be drawn to those in that state. So if you get married, you will not need to admit any sort of lust because the other will not have any desire to hear it. (If you are not then you could lie or try and bring them out of their five vices) It's only those who are still trapped in 5 Vices that need to hear those things, that want approval. Those who are free need no such approval.
Not to say that sex wouldn't be awesome without lust. It would probably be more so because you are not wearing any thought/judgement filters over your senses. However, paradoxically you would never want any because you would feel fulfilled/happy even without it.

I do not think the 5 Vices are a medicine or like alcohol at all; Naam is the medicine. The 5 Vices are like the auto-pilot in air planes, a 100,000 year old auto-pilot in humans.
 

Harry Haller

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Bhagatsinghji,

have you met anyone or know of anyone who has managed to achieve this state, I personally believe that this state is achievable only on death, and then only if you are close to it

but that is only my opinion:interestedsingh:
 

BhagatSingh

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Yes Harry ji, I am not speaking about perfection at all. Without the 5 Vices in my accounts would be like 70-80% without. The rest is 5 Vices but is never really acted upon. As you get older you may reach 95% (your Indian parents will still not be happy with you though. They don't want to know what would happen at 100%:mundaviolin: )
 

Harry Haller

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maybe they should set a limit of 75% before you are allowed to look like a sikh.. now that is a worthy time of pagri bhandi

I have a question for you my friend, what about all those whose demons drive them to sewa, would you consider a khalsa soldier who takes the odd bit of bhang to get him through the horrors of war, less percentage wise than say a householder with no pressures who sometimes has too much of his wifes delicious kheer, is it like ebay feedback where the more transactions you do, give you a chance to put your bad feedback in perspective ,is it viewed as a percentage of your overall actions
 

BhagatSingh

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Apr 25, 2006
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You are thinking about it too much about this, and probably thinking a lot in general. Relax your thinking muscles, and just learn to be more and more aware of things, of the world, of life,of your thoughts even.
Know that the truth cannot be realized through thought or intelligence anyway.

ਸੋਚੈ ਸੋਚਿ ਹੋਵਈ ਜੇ ਸੋਚੀ ਲਖ ਵਾਰ
सोचै सोचि न होवई जे सोची लख वार ॥
Socẖai socẖ na hova▫ī je socẖī lakẖ vār.
By thinking, He cannot be reduced to thought, even by thinking hundreds of thousands of times.

ਚੁਪੈ ਚੁਪ ਹੋਵਈ ਜੇ ਲਾਇ ਰਹਾ ਲਿਵ ਤਾਰ
चुपै चुप न होवई जे लाइ रहा लिव तार ॥
Cẖupai cẖup na hova▫ī je lā▫e rahā liv ṯār.
By remaining silent, inner silence is not obtained, even by remaining lovingly absorbed deep within.

ਭੁਖਿਆ ਭੁਖ ਉਤਰੀ ਜੇ ਬੰਨਾ ਪੁਰੀਆ ਭਾਰ
भुखिआ भुख न उतरी जे बंना पुरीआ भार ॥
Bẖukẖi▫ā bẖukẖ na uṯrī je bannā purī▫ā bẖār.
The hunger of the hungry is not appeased, even by piling up loads of worldly goods.

ਸਹਸ ਸਿਆਣਪਾ ਲਖ ਹੋਹਿ ਇਕ ਚਲੈ ਨਾਲਿ
सहस सिआणपा लख होहि त इक न चलै नालि ॥
Sahas si▫āṇpā lakẖ hohi ṯa ik na cẖalai nāl.
Hundreds of thousands of clever tricks [ ਸਿਆਣਪਾ = intelligence], but not even one of them will go along with you in the end.

ਕਿਵ ਸਚਿਆਰਾ ਹੋਈਐ ਕਿਵ ਕੂੜੈ ਤੁਟੈ ਪਾਲਿ
किव सचिआरा होईऐ किव कूड़ै तुटै पालि ॥
Kiv sacẖi▫ārā ho▫ī▫ai kiv kūrhai ṯutai pāl.
So how can you become truthful? And how can the veil of illusion be torn away?

ਹੁਕਮਿ ਰਜਾਈ ਚਲਣਾ ਨਾਨਕ ਲਿਖਿਆ ਨਾਲਿ ॥੧॥
हुकमि रजाई चलणा नानक लिखिआ नालि ॥१॥
Hukam rajā▫ī cẖalṇā Nānak likẖi▫ā nāl. ||1||
O Nanak, it is written that you shall obey the Hukam of His Command, and walk in the Way of His Will. ||1||
 

KulwantK

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Oct 31, 2007
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Sat Nam, Ji! No, it is not greedy to wish to work out in order to maintain good health. However, if one is working out so that one may merely look better, well then that might be something different.
One will of course look better when one is keeping good health, and that is OK, but when one is relying on one's looks to as they say, "get ahead", now, that may be bordering on pride, in the inappropriate way.
You see, the 5 vices are things-out-of-balance. Here is an example:
It is fine to eat when you are hungry. Ideally you will want to eat healthy food, of course. However, it is not good to over eat- not only is that not good for health, but it could be depriving someone else of food. Gluttony: something that is muchly out of balance!
It is fine to want to be at your best health, and it is nice that you look - and most importantly in this arena- feel- your best when you are in your best health, but when you start to depend on how you look rather than on keeping God and Guru's word in your heart and mind, then that goes from healthy self-respect into pride- again, something very out of balance!
Hope this helps!
Wahe Guru Ji Ki Ka Khlasa
Wahe Guru Ji Ki Fateh!
KulwantK
 

Harry Haller

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Jan 31, 2011
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Bhagatsinghji

With the greatest respect, I thank you for the time taken to compose your last reply, you are quite correct, I do think too much.

We are all very different people, and although the path is the same for all of us, how we travel that path is up to the individual. I am a sikh today not because I have an interest in personal salvation, nor because I am willed to be one, but because it is the only ideology that I, in my present form can not only understand but use as a tracer guide as to how to live life, and there you have it, for me its all about how to live life, I still have no interest in the spiritual aspects, I feel to do so would give the lust for more knowledge and ego and pride that I had achieved something that others aspire to, that will have to wait

If you are 80% free, then I applaud you from the bottom of my heart, I unfortunately yoyo between 20% to 60%, so I have to keep thinking, to try and keep it above 50%!

No amount of prayer or positive thinking is going to help me, all I can do, is what I have done all my life, try and find some understanding so that I have no wish to think or carry out the pleasurable but destructive processes in my head, bearing in mind at one point I was a complete manmukh, so my gurmukh bearing would have been 0%, then 60% isnt doing too bad

My wife is nearer 85% so she would probably understand better than me

:)
 

BhagatSingh

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Apr 25, 2006
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Personal salvation and spirituality are simply accepting and living in harmony with God's will as written in that pauri. I take this as 1. accepting that which has happened, the past, as a gift. However, do not dwell in the past because then you are missing the gift you are receiving now. 2. Accepting what is happening now, noticing > paying attention to > accepting it as it is without judgements > finally dwelling in the gift that is unfolding this very moment. 3. Accepting anything that will arise in the future, being ready to face things without judgement. However, do not dwell in the future either because then again you will miss the gifts that you receive now, also because you don't know what will unfold. This is not possible with thinking or using the intellect, the mind.
That seems to me to be the underlying essence of all meditation techniques and practices, and it makes sense why it's stated so early in Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji. So e.g. paying attention to the repetition of naam will put you in touch with the God's hukam as it unfolds. Try it sometime (there's no other way to know), when talking to your wife, perhaps, or when you are working out (instead of counting reps) just get that inner voice to repeat "waheguru" "waheguru". Then pay attention to the words as well as the moments around the words.

Yes, your mind will tell you it's at 60% or 50% or 80%, or that someone else is at 60% or 50% or 80%... don't buy into that. The mind, the intellect does not know the truth. It's thinks it does, it may even have a bare bore skeleton of the truth, some words, some theory, but not the truth itself. The truth is only available to the God inside you, that which makes all perception, understanding, thought, intellect possible.

Do not dwell on these words either, do not think about them, they are not the truth.
 

Harry Haller

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Bhagatsinghji,

Quote
"Yes, your mind will tell you it's at 60% or 50% or 80%, or that someone else is at 60% or 50% or 80%... don't buy into that. The mind, the intellect does not know the truth. It's thinks it does, it may even have a bare bore skeleton of the truth, some words, some theory, but not the truth itself. The truth is only available to the God inside you, that which makes all perception, understanding, thought, intellect possible.

Do not dwell on these words either, do not think about them, they are not the truth."

I feel you are possibly contradicting yourself , having stated that your are 80%.

I also feel that at different stages in your life you become more able to accept all the wonderful things you mention, I do not feel that at any time, you can simply follow words and they become reality, in the same way that a newborn child could not possibly understand, and this has nothing to do with age, I think you need to have enough life experience to really understand the words, and not only act on them , but be able to put them into context, so that what you are receiving is wisdom, not rhetoric. A true sikh would be able to put those words into some sort of order that would bring about understanding, translated or not, and with enough experience to get the jist of what you are saying, but lacking enough to actually see the beauty in those words, I fall short.

I think the past is important, it lies like a well worn road behind us to show us what our actions have given us, of course the past and future have no bearing when you are truly in tune with the creator, however, many of us are not, and we have to look to see where it is we went wrong, and to somehow better ourselves until we are able to absorb the words that you are clearly able to
 

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