How to Overcome Subtle Desires – Part 2


Increase your good desires in the beginning. Occupy your mind with the study of standard philosophical books. Thereby you can decrease your thought of the body and desire for name and fame etc. Later on, you will have to give up good desires also. You must entirely devote your time and energy in meditation and meditation alone. The destruction of Subtle Desire is caused through well-conducted deliberation, meditation, strong will.


The wise know that the mind associated with Subtle Desire tends to bondage while the mind absolutely free from Subtle Desire is said to be an emancipated one. Just as a lion that is shut up in a cage emerges out by breaking the bars of the cage, so also a Wise person comes out of this cage of physical body victoriously by breaking or by destroying the Subtle Desires of the mind through constant Self Inquiry, profound and constant meditation. The more you attenuate your Subtle Desires the happier you will become. In proportion to the thinning of the Subtle Desires, the mind also is proportionately thinned out. Mind is nothing but a bundle of Subtle Desires. Mind is no other than the Subtle Desires which generate an endless series of rebirths. The true nature of the mind is the Subtle Desires. The two are synonymous.

Conquest of Ego

If you destroy egoism (Ego, this false little “I”) and control the senses, the Subtle Desires will die by themselves. The root cause for all troubles is Ego. Just as the dependents of a family hang upon the chief of the house “the father” similarly, all Subtle Desires, Cravings, etc., hang upon Ego, the chief of this house-body.

Constantly generate from the Sattvic (Pure) mind-battery pure and open (“I am Soul”) electric current. That is the potent antidote. Keep it safe in the pocket; smell it when an apoplectic attack of the Ego false “I” idea overcomes you. It is only when you eradicate the painful Ego of the mind an conquer the foes of organs Senses that the ever-waking Subtle Desires will subside.

The Meaning of Liberation (Moksha)

The illusory subtle desires that have arisen through the practice of many hundreds of lives never perish except through the practice of Yoga for a long time. Liberation does not mean physical separation from all worldly affairs, but only a state of mind bereft of all impure subtle desires or clinging to worldly things, but yet working as usual amidst them.

You must realize God in and through the world. This is the central teaching of the Gita “But the disciplined (lower) self, moving among sense-objects with senses free from attraction and repulsion and mastered by the higher Self, goes to Peace”. This is the central teaching across many holy books.

There is no subtle desire in Soul. Through the knowledge of Soul, there will be an extinction of all Subtle Desires, which form the medium of enjoyments. With the extinction of all Subtle Desires, the undaunted mind will get quiescence like a ghee-less lamp.


Mind – Its Mysteries and Control by Sri Swami Sivananda