The Perfection of Play

By now it would be clear to our readers that we are aspiring to bring back the wise learning from the Ancient Scriptures in the form of Toys. Strictly the “Toy” is not a comprehensive term to describe the scope of Krida. Toying along with Playing describes it bit better, and thus today’s post is more about playing and players.

What is common among athletes like Usain Bolt (greatest Sprinter of all time), Michael Phelps (touted as the greatest Swimmer ever), Serena Williams (Tennis), Sachin Tendulkar (Cricket) and Pele (Footballer)? Let me give a try, they have systematically developed perfection in using one or other senses (Indriya). If we simply watch them Playing, it’s mind-boggling. We adore them for their perfection in playing, some may even name them as God of that sport. Isn’t it the objective of our life too, to attain perfection into something? Now what this “something” means to one is very individual to oneself. People in general strive to figure it out during this short journey called life. We have people who figured it out very lately what they wanted to play in their life. On the other hand a large number of people have no idea about the direction they are heading to.

No matter how much perfection one achieve in training his/her body (working senses), it will be of no use than making some money, attaining fame and making a community proud, all of them are temporary! One can reap the real benefits by perfecting his/her life for the welfare of all the beings and thus serving the Supreme authority. It is clearly stated in Bhagavad Gita (3.42) that, “The senses are superior to the gross body, and superior to the senses is the mind. Beyond the mind is the intellect, and even beyond the intellect is the soul.”

इन्द्रियाणि पराण्याहुरिन्द्रियेभ्यः परं मनः ।
मनसस्तु परा बुद्धिर्यो बुद्धेः परतस्तु सः ॥ ३.४२ ॥

indriyāṇi parāṇyāhur indriyebhyaḥ paraṁ manaḥ
manasas tu parā buddhir yo buddheḥ paratas tu saḥ

So why to put so much efforts on perfecting inferior temporary things, when we are aware of superior options. Going by this verse, no matter what game we are playing at the gross level, if we put our intelligence to good work in the welfare of all the beings, those rewards and achievements are for ever. In revered scripture (Srimad Bhagavatam 1.6.24) Lord says to Sri Narada, “Intelligence engaged in My devotion cannot be thwarted at any time. Even at the time of creation, as well as at the time of annihilation, your remembrance will continue by My mercy.”

मतिर्मयि निबद्धेयं न विपद्येत कर्हिचित्
प्रजासर्गनिरोधेऽपि स्मृतिश्च मदनुग्रहात् ॥ १.६.२४ ॥

matir mayi nibaddheyaṁ na vipadyeta karhicit
prajā-sarga-nirodhe ’pi smṛtiś ca mad-anugrahāt

Now, isn’t this game of life worth playing for?

On your marks, get set, go!


Please note that this post is not meant to demote any type of sport. It is targeted to catch attention of young minds and parents towards what is considered as the epitome of perfect life as prescribed by time-tested scriptures. If someone is naturally inclined towards sports, there is no harm in pursuing it, but that interest should not be driven by mere fame and achievements of others (getting inspired is a different ball game altogether).

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