Life is a constant struggle. Every man, from a grocery store owner to a steel mills owner is struggling in their life and often wondering the same thing – “How much more struggle? When am I going to get where I want to be? Are my dreams even worth fighting for?”
The answer to all these questions comes from a simple understanding of life itself. As said by Buddha, “Life is suffering”. Buddha was not being pessimistic or dooming everyone to suffer by saying this, no! He is merely indicating the path to success and enlightenment. He is telling us a subtle truth that will dissolve our questions which start with “How much longer… ?”. As long as people believe that life is fun and joy, they keep jumping from one thing to another without any determination, without any commitment towards their work. Even the smallest of disappointments is enough to shake them and question their beliefs in their own dreams. They give up easily to move on to pastures which look greener. But the truth is that grass is always green on the other side if you think life is joy. If you accept that life is struggle, and that is the only path to success, the pull towards other things automatically disappears.
To achieve any success in the outer world or in the inner world, great perseverance and preserving of purpose is needed. The understanding that life is suffering liberates people from the fantasies that there is a greener side and makes people stick to their purpose in life. The struggle doesn’t seem as bad, and the longer one sticks to the task, the more he progresses.
It is the same in a pursuit of enlightenment as well. It entails a lot of initial disappointments, failures, but if that makes a seeker think that enlightenment is not for him, or that his life is better without enlightenment, he will simply revert back to his old ways which look more appealing at that moment, but will never be able to experience the ultimate, which can liberate him and go beyond all sufferings in life.
The truth is that life is joy, the fact is that life is suffering. Until one reaches a space where he can experience the truth, only accepting the fact can raise him and show him the way forward. When one starts working with the fact, the truth automatically reveals itself to him. When one starts with the assumption that life is suffering and continues to work towards his goals of success and/or enlightenment with unwavering determination and commitment, he slowly reaches the place where his desires are fulfilled and where the truth can become his own experience.
Taken from Nithyananda’s Discourses on Bhagavad Gita, 2011, Bidadi Ashram