Paramahansa Yogananda
Top 20 Spiritual Tips (9)



18. Work Without Desire —
Do Your Best & Give it to God

The saints stress nonattachment so that one strong point of material attachment may not prevent our attaining the entire kingdom of God. Renunciation doesn't mean giving up everything; it means:

giving up small pleasures
for eternal bliss.


You must learn to work without desire,
and to live in this world without attachment.

As soon as you are caught by desires or attachment, you will have all the evil that is coming to you. ... Those who want to be liberated must do likewise, engaging in serviceful, joyful, nonattached activity. Most people willingly work hard for money, but they won't make even a little effort for their salvation. We must work for God. (dr)


Unfulfilled desires are the root cause of reincarnation. You don't have to be a king in order to have complete fulfillment. Nor do you end desires by giving up everything and becoming a poor man. You have your own self-created destiny with its lessons to be learned, and you must play well that part for which you were sent here. If everybody on the stage wants to be a king or queen, there will be no play. An actor with even a minor part can ruin the entire production by a poor performance. Every role is important; everyone should interact harmoniously for the success of the play. The Lord has been trying to make a good drama out of His creation, but I am afraid that most actors have bungled it. (jt)


Desire is what holds you in mortal bondage. If you want a big home on a hill with a view, a nice income, a good marriage and family, you may wear yourself out striving to get these things, then perhaps your spouse leaves you for somebody else, or you get sick, or your business fails—that is the nature of human happiness. (jt)


Do your best,

give it to God.


Expectation of recompense for doing good is meanness, is littleness. Give and forget. (jt)

Resurrect yourself from the littleness of life,
the little things that disturb you.


"He who is conscious of the omnipresence of God
does not injure the Self by the self.
That man reaches the Supreme Goal."
[ XIII:27-30]

He is a liberated man who sees only the Lord in all creatures and in all creation. ["Whatever you do to others you do it to yourself."]



19. Live a Balance Life — Play Your Part Well

— Control your senses.
— Control your habits and behavior.

balanced life

That is, live in harmony with the divine laws governing material and spiritual duty (let not one responsibility contradict other important duties); health (millions need a greater consciousness of health, for diseases are not created by God but by man's breaking God's laws); prosperity (include others in your own well-being); and human relationships. Do not leave anybody out of your love. Keep everyone in your heart, and they will keep you in theirs. You will be a king on the throne of all hearts, commanding their love and influencing them to goodness, not by force, but by your love. (dr)SRF AUM

Do not be bound by this earth. This is just a place where for a time you are to act your part. Do not give undue importance to it. Balance material and spiritual duties in your life; that will bring you supreme happiness. Be ambitious for God , which will help you to play your part well. (dr)


People lose their balance and suffer from money madness and business mania only because they never had the opportunity of culturing habits of a balanced life. It is not our passing thoughts or brilliant ideas but our everyday habits that control our lives. (jt)SRF AUM

Self-Realization is a philosophy of living:
— right meditation
— right thinking
— right living.


Control Your Senses

Turn those five searchlights inward in meditation. In that inner silence, you will know the Beauty and Bliss—beyond material imagination—that is God. The senses do not keep their promises of happiness. If you have everything in this world, you will find you still want something else; and your happiness will be a slave to your possessions. To be supremely happy and free, you must be a man of renunciation— one who is master of the senses and is nonattached to possessions. True renunciation means to renounce material consciousness for spiritual consciousness. It is not exclusive, but inclusive, for to have spiritual consciousness is to possess everything that will make you truly and lastingly happy.


The true master is one who controls his senses. When he says no to temptations, he means no. And when he says yes to right action, he means yes. (jt)


Control Your Habits and Behavior

A life of spiritual harmony— whether lived in the context of the individual, the ashram, the family, the nation, or the world—requires willing cooperation with the rules of right behavior, and a loving understanding and cooperation with others. The standards and rules of spiritual harmony are higher than those of material harmony. Follow them strictly. Be your own judge, and court-martial yourself. If the verdict is that you have done wrong, correct yourself. Otherwise, your bad habits and wrong behavior will act against you like a boomerang. Better still, guide all your actions by the inner voice of spiritual consciousness, so that you will do no wrong.



Play Your Part Well

PALY YOUR PART WELLThis drama of God's is going on constantly. We, the actors of many races, play in it life after life on the stage of space and time. We should understand the purpose of this drama. We were put here in this world to play our parts well, but not to become enmeshed in and identified with our roles.

So on earth it doesn't matter whether we scrub floors or whether we are leaders of great organizations. Unless man knows that he is playing on the stage of time, he is going to suffer from the consciousness of these differences in station and condition. When stage actors play different parts, they remember that they are only acting, and knowing that, they do not bemoan their occasional unattractive roles, but play them all to the best of their ability.

Learn how to play the various parts of your life-movie without identifying your role with your Self. It is important to remember, whenever pain or anger or any kind of mental or physical suffering comes, to look upon them as would a spectator. Dissociate yourself from your experiences. Looking upon them as though they were happening to another person is the best way. (os)

"Oh, life is sweet, and death a dream
When Thy Song flows through me.
Then praise is sweet, and blame a dream
When Thy Song flows through me.
Then health is sweet, and sickness a dream
When Thy Song flows through me.
Then life is sweet, and death a dream
When Thy Song flows through me."*

* From "Cosmic Chants"


Nobody is Like You

You are a part of the Lord's creation; He needs everybody to carry on this drama. Never compare yourself with anybody else.

You are what you are.
Nobody is like you.
Nobody can act your part as you can.

Similarly, you should not try to play somebody else's part. What is important is to do the will of Him who sent you; that is what you want. While you do your part, think all the time that God is working through you. (jt)


20. Never Give Up!

Even though God may not seem to respond, one should not succumb to doubts but should unremittingly continue in the holy quest. Perseverance is the whole magic of spiritual success. ...

Great happiness comes to the devotee who is steadfast. Without unquenchable enthusiasm nothing can be gained. (me)


First, free yourself from wrong thoughts and habits.

Second, establish good habits and perform good deeds.
If you keep on trying, you will improve.

A saint is a sinner who never gave up.

Never give up!


Learn to stand unshaken
midst the crash of breaking worlds.

When you have found your true soul-nature of everlasting joy, that indestructible bliss will remain with you throughout all experiences of life, whether they be pleasant or disagreeable. Your joy will stand unshaken amidst the crash of breaking earthly pleasures. You will enjoy everything with the Joy that is God. (dr)


So if you are crucified by trials, if through ignorance you are misunderstood, if you are faced with some superhuman task, if you are overwhelmed by temptation, remember that these do not come to destroy you. They come only to shake you out of delusion. That is why the devotee should always pray for right attitude, that he might at all times keep his attention on God as a goal of his life. (from Finding the Joy Within You by Sri Daya Mata) (More...)


Next Page »

(aoy) — Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda
(bg) — God Talks with Arjuna: The Bhagavad Gita by Paramahansa Yogananda
(dr) — The Divine Romance by Paramahansa Yogananda
(jt) — Journey to Self-Realization by Paramahansa Yogananda
(me) — Man's Eternal Quest by Paramahansa Yogananda
(os) — Other Sources... Talks, Booklets
(sc) — The Second Coming of Christ by Paramahansa Yogananda
(sm) — Self-Realization Magazines