Once in the month of June a baby lamb was playing with its mother. It was merrily running around and jumping here and there. It told its mother that it intended to make a good feast of Ras flowers (a variety of flowers found abundantly during the festival of Ras Lila in November).
The mother endearingly told her child that enjoying a feast of Ras flowers was not as easy as it looked. She added that the child would have to face many dangers before it could hope to feed on these flowers.

She cautioned the baby by saying that the approaching months of September and October were not very auspicious for it since it might get caught and sacrificed for the Goddess Durga.

This would be followed by the Kali Puja period and if the young one was fortunate enough to survive that as well, then there would still be Jagaddhatri Puja at which almost all the male lambs left after Durga and Kali pujas were sacrificed.

She said, “If your good luck carries you safely through all the crisis, then you can hope to feast on Ras flowers at the beginning of November.”

Sri Ramakrishna would say that like the mother in the above story one should be careful as to not be hasty in approving all desires that our youthful minds might entertain.

Such fancies have to be dealt with ruthlessly and rooted out after considering the manifold crisis which we may have to pass through in our lives. Our minds often deceive us and conjure up several fanciful and alluring pictures. It tempts us in ever so many ways and makes us deviate from our spiritual path.

Only by conquering one’s desires can one progress in their spiritual journey and march towards the ultimate goal.

By Swami Shantatmananda

Published in the Sunday Guardian – ‘People Of The Sacred Books’ Column (20 Oct 2012)

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