11.Doubting Toms

‘Hari, why did you buy two tickets for your bus journey?’
‘What if I lose one ticket?’ said the doubting Tom.
‘But suppose you lose both?’
‘I have thought of that too! I have a bus pass!’
‘But if you lose the pass also?’
‘Oh! No problem? I am RTC staff!’
He could not feel ‘Oh no problem’ till the third stage. He doubted himself at every step!
Actually the seeds of faith are sown in us right from our birth. Intuitively we identify our mother, we accept somebody as our father, we learn whatever principles are taught by the elders. Then how did these doubting Toms crop up? Where are their roots?
Lord Krishna spoke of such category of people.

‘Ajnascha sradda danascha samsayatma vinasyati
Nayam lokosti na paro na sukham samsayatman 4 - 40

Ajna - he who lacks discrimination, cha- and, asradda dan - is devoid of faith, cha - and, samsayatma - possessed by doubt, vinasyati - is lost, samsayatman - for such a doubting soul, na + ayam-neither this, loka-world, asti - there is , na - nor, par - the other world, na - nor even, sukham - happiness.

He who lacks discrimination, is devoid of faith, and is possessed by doubt is lost to the spiritual path. For the doubting soul there is neither this world nor the world beyond, nor even happiness.

The word ‘samsayatma’ along with the adjectives ‘ajnah’ and asraddadhanah’ means the doubting soul lacking in discrimination and devoid of faith. Being devoid of intelligence, such a man cannot correctly grasp the import of the Vedas and other scriptures, or the teachings of wise men and the practices taught by them. Since he doesn’t have faith in whatever he understands, he entertains doubt at every step and cannot decide what he should do and what he should not do!

This element of doubt applies to whatever course of action he does! Such a man cannot live in peace and cannot allow others to live in peace. A newly married couple went to a park. The husband said, ‘Look how beautiful the sky is!’ The wife answered ‘I doubt whether I switched off the stove or not.’
The husband got wild but he controlled himself. After 5 minutes he said, ‘Aren’t the rose flowers wonderful?’
‘My God! I doubt whether I locked the backyard door!’
The husband lost the entire romantic mood and dragged her home!

These doubting souls can’t assume others could be good! One man wanted to lend philanthropic services to the people around. He offered to carry suitcases at bus stand, but people looked at him with furtive looks! ‘He looks decent enough, but what if he runs away with our suitcases! We can’t trust people today!’ Then he offered to give lift to students in his car but again some other element of doubt ‘Suppose he sells us away to Dubai Seths? Even if we ask for lift nobody gives us, why then is he volunteering?’ He tried his hand at the hospitals but again a negative approach’. He is old enough but is after the young nurses.’ He was forced to give up his kind gestures.

A boy wants to be a principled person and offers to marry a poor girl without dowry. People wonder what is wrong with him! You teach anything good to them, they doubt the very essence of it. You tell them oil pulling is good for health. You tell them all the dos and donts in it and ask them to follow it. As usual they don’t understand it properly, they don’t follow it with utmost care and the seventh day they come and tell you, ‘Oil pulling is a sheer waste. It didn’t work. It brings gas trouble. No I will not do it!’ Then they hear drinking water on an empty stomach is good. They drink for two days and they get nausea and they spread ‘it is not good for health’. The naturopath doctors cautions you, ‘you face some problems initially, but don’t stop, continue!’ Imagine a long distance journey by car. It is problematic initially, but if you doubt will you ever reach the main road, you can never reach it!

If you tell them, if you do this prayer you will certainly get a job, they don’t totally ignore you, but they also don’t fully trust you. They do the prayer thinking all the while how it is possible! ‘When I did not get job for 2 years, how will I get it in 40 days!; It will work, provided they have faith - faith in themselves, faith in God, faith in Sastras !

The man, who doubts, suffers not only a spiritual fall but also the material loss. He cannot obtain wealth, glory and fame etc. He can neither enjoy the blessing of heaven after death nor even the joy of this world. It is not possible for him to attain success in any sphere so long as he continues to entertain doubt in his mind and fails to arrive at a definite conclusion!

On the other hand, he who possesses the power to discriminate in every matter, and is endowed with faith in the Vedas and other scriptures as well as in the teachings of saints, does not come to ruin in the above manner. Like Arjuna, he can with the help of faith and reason remove his doubt for all time and take to the path of duty, and attaining success can achieve the end of human existence.

Doubt, doubt everywhere!
Not an inch of success to claim!