The Bhagavad Gita II:38
Excerpts from God Talks with Arjuna: The Bhagavad Gita
by Paramahansa Yogananda
Equalizing (by evenmindedness) happiness and sorrow, profit and loss, triumph and failure—so encounter thou the battle! Thus thou wilt not acquire sin.
— The Bhagavad Gita II:38
A basic principle of yoga is that practicing mental equilibrium neutralizes the effects of delusion. Without the involvement of the emotions of the dreamer reacting to the sensations and incidents of a dream, the dream loses its significance—and especially its hurtful effects.
Similarly, the cosmic dream of life loses its delusive power to affect the yogi who with unruffled inner calmness and evenmindedness views the dream of life without emotional involvement.
This advice of the Gita enables the yogi to keep himself aloof from the agitation and sting caused by the clash of the opposites sporting on the mental screen of his consciousness, even while he perceives and enacts his part in the dream drama.
A fairly successful moral man should not become unduly overjoyed at his victory over his senses, for then he might relax his efforts and try to run over the thin ice of deficient self-control and consequently fall into deep waters of temptation. Until the final victory is gained, no moral man should be overconfident. Nor should he be despondent during temporary lack of self-control and thus acknowledge defeat.
The resolute evenminded moral man steadily marches on to the goal of complete self-mastery. The premature joy of temporary success or the depression of temporary failure should not be allowed to obstruct the way of moral progress.
Neither should a devotee who meditates regularly but who finds himself battered by a sudden storm of subconscious restlessness become discouraged nor stop making renewed efforts at deeper meditation and God-contact. Until one is anchored in the Infinite, he must valiantly and evenly race his mental ship of concentration on the calm or rough seas of inner experiences. A yogi whose mind is free from the waves of temporary mental elation, sadness, or emotional disturbances finds within himself the clear reflection of Spirit.
The inner calmness of the meditating yogi penetrates like X-rays through all outer material obstructions; it photographs the hidden Spirit. A constant unruffled tranquility can be gained by ever deeper meditation, ultimately becoming an all-penetrating light that runs through the coverings of matter into the heart of the omnipresent Spirit. The yogi intent on the attainment of cosmic consciousness, union with God, must keep his mind steadily fixed on the inner perception acquired by meditation, not overly involving his mind with the excitation of the initial stages of superconscious joy or the explosion of temporary subconscious restlessness. Such a yogi finds his unchangeable altar of calmness the resting-place of Spirit.