Harnessing Potentials

Swami Tejomayananda 

Most of us will agree that we are born rich and yet somehow we are unable to truly realize and harness our true potentials. In order to harness the great potential that lies within each one of us, it is important to manifest it and for that it is necessary to have a great goal in life. Our potential lies in the body, speech, mind, intellect and also through external means. Indeed, the treasure that we possess is vast and invaluable. It is due to this reason that psychologists would agree that we are not entirely using the true potential of our brains which is why we remain as extras in our own movie.

Much of our potential has been manifested out of necessity to survive or thrive. A police officer once tried catching a weak-looking thief who escaped. When asked why the thief outran him, he said, "I ran as part of my duty. He ran to save his life. His motivation was greater." Great potential may at times manifest out of sheer necessity but usually if your goal is only to survive, you work enough only to survive. If you just want to pass, you study just enough to scrape through.

If we have to lift and carry six bricks, it is common knowledge that that we need more strength which is needed in order to be utilized completely. We can also our increase our ability to lift heavier and heavier objects by practicing. But why should we practice, when, for most of us the heaviest object that we need to lift is just ourselves? A singer who aspires to sing in front of the President would have to practice immensely before achieving that level of perfection. Similarly, a weight lifter who decides to win in the Olympics practices day and night in order to lift the gold medal! For he is aware that the aspiration of his countrymen lie in him. The higher the goal, the greater is the potential that we manifest. Goals enable us to perform to our potential.

Sir Edmund Hillary said, "I did not conquer Mount Everest. I conquered myself." When the great mountain stands ahead of us beckoning us, it is important that we take notice of that call. We can more easily overcome our moments of weakness. Therefore, the higher the goal, the greater is the ability we manifest overcoming the obstacles within and without.


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