Spiritual Practice with Expectation and Without expectation

May 19 13:14 2009 Sean M. Clarke Print This Article

Spiritual practice with expectation (Sakaam saadhanaa): This is spiritual practice done with the expectations of worldly gain

For example: Saying prayers or making offerings or fasting or doing some rituals to

  • Gain wealth
  • Get a job
  • Finding lost objects
  • Conceive a child
  • Overcome an illness
  • Ensure the safety of a loved one

Spiritual practice without expectation (Nishkaam saadhanaa): This is spiritual practice done with the sole aim of spiritual growth. Thus,Guest Posting in this mode of spiritual practice, seekers of spiritual growth will continue with their spiritual practice while using every event in their life for spiritual growth. If at all they are faced with a difficult situation they will use the situation to grow spiritually by reducing their ego or surrendering the outcome of the situation to God’s wish.

A comparison of sakaam and nishkaam modes of spiritual practice:

When we do spiritual practice a certain amount of spiritual energy is generated. Now when the spiritual energy is directed towards worldly gain as in sakaam mode of spiritual practice desires may be fulfilled but spiritual growth does not occur. This is akin to attempting to fill a jar with a leak; the jar never gets full. When we do nishkaam spiritual practice then all the energy generated from spiritual practice is used to fuel spiritual growth.  When a seeker of God does nishkaam spiritual practice not only does spiritual growth occur but his material and worldly requirement are also taken care of.

The seeker experiences worldly happiness by doing sakaam spiritual practice while he experiences Bliss by doing nishkaam spiritual practice.

The difference in sakam and nishkam spiritual practice
  • Prayer made to God for worldly gain (sakaam) and without any expectation (nishkaam) -
    1. Sakaam spiritual practice (Prayer made to God with worldly desires to be fulfilled) activates the saviour aspect of God. The result for worldly wish to be granted however depends on the intensity of the spiritual practice and the destiny that one has to undergo. Nishkaam spiritual practice activates the Guru or the teaching principle of God. As a result the seeker experiences spiritual growth.
    2. Nishkaam spiritual practice activates the saviour aspect of God. As a result the worldly aspects of seeker’s life are taken care of by the God.
    3. Nishkaam spiritual practice activates the destroyer aspect of God and this aspect of God removes the obstruction from anyone who is troubling the seeker
  • When we do Sakaam spiritual practice we activate the saviour aspect of the God principle. The final result of what we pray or wish for is mainly influenced by the intensity of our spiritual practice (sadhanaa) and our destiny. When we do Nishkaam spiritual practice we activate the Guru principle or the Teaching Principle of God that looks after our spiritual growth. However along with this we also activate the saviour aspect of God. If a seeker practicing Nishkaam spiritual practice is obstructed and troubled by someone then the destroyer form of God is activated to protect the seeker and give the person troubling the seeker his due.
  • Sakaam spiritual practice cannot give permanence. For example, suppose a person does spiritual practice to acquire a lot of wealth. Once he gets wealthy his desires do not stop there. He may ask for good health, a good spouse, a child, and so on. Thus he gets trapped in a vicious circle of trying to appease his various desires. Such a quest can never end, as there is always something yet to be fulfilled. So, one can never experience complete satisfaction from this mode of spiritual practice. However, in the nishkaam mode of spiritual practice, once a person’s sole aim of spiritual progress is achieved, he realizes his true self and realizes God. At this stage of spiritual evolvement, he gets the permanent experience of continuous Bliss.

·          Sakaam spiritual practice is about (experiencing) all creation or created objects, whereas nishkaam spiritual practice is about (experiencing) the Creator. Sakaam spiritual practice is about obtaining things in the Great Illusion - Maya, while nishkaam spiritual practice is about realizing and experiencing the Absolute Truth which is God.

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About Article Author

Sean M. Clarke
Sean M. Clarke

Sean M. Clarke has been studying and practicing Spirituality with the Spiritual Science Research Foundation (SSRF) over the past 9 years. An MBA graduate from Monash-Mt Eliza Business School, Australia. Sean gave up his regular career as a Strategy and Business Analyst in the technology sector to help co-ordinate dissemination of SSRF research material as a full-time volunteer.

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