16.- Little Renunciation of Every Day

Every day we men are breathing, eating, sleeping, going to work or study, and making many things to earn a living. If we want to improve and live rightly and in peace, and to get rid from the annoyance caused by social oppression, we have to practice a daily little renunciation, and to learn the Lord’s prayer: “Give us this day our daily bread”. It is not sufficient to study the Teachings that explain the doctrine of Renunciation, to practice ascetic exercises, to meditate as a rule, to recite prayers and to read pious books; we need to renounce in a concrete way. No person eats outright a lot of food although his table is well served, but he eats what his body needs, each day a little. Likewise, nobody gets rid from psychic chains that imprison him, but little by little, in a routine way, to satisfy a freedom that his soul needs, until a moment when Renunciation becomes an authentic and distinctive character.
Certain persons ever wish to win, to possess much money, two or three cars, several houses and fields. Other individuals need to give, to leave something each day, and to be free outside and within. The former ones are chained to a longing for possessions; they live tormented and fearing to be robbed, or to lose what they possess at the moment of death. The latter live without fears; Renunciation is the path of their freedom.
By ignorance, men do not know how to live. Although the Great Masters many times recommended “not accumulate” possessions (Jesus, Buddha, Saint Francis of Assisi, Saint Paul of the Cross, and others), religious, educational, economic and national corporations, and uneducated masses go on to behave otherwise and do not give anything. Let us look at Argentina, with its enormous production of food, and a multitude of desperate individuals ransacking supermarkets, robbing by the streets, blocking routes with violent pickets, and countless children begging everywhere. A person giving with pleasure, with no motive at all, because he does not fear the future or death, gets rid of what he has (time, affections, good will, possessions) and does not worry. He knows that he does not own all this at all, and gives back to the circuit of life what is of all men. His soul expands through the universe on the bliss of liberty.

a. ¿How to renounce?

You learn Renunciation rationally; it is like reading and writing in the school, and you practice it with will and heart. Those who make efforts to practice significant exercises and who express unusual purposes, have no intentions to renounce: they look for self-justification and say “I cannot do anything more than this”. They feel that such purposes, emphatically expressed, are Renunciation by themselves; so they repeat themselves tirelessly. A perpetual student that fails year by year in his final examinations, never can be a good or bad professional; promises do not lead anywhere. Renunciation is a concrete reality, like to eat bread when you are hungry, therefore your hunger calms down at once.
There are many ways of renunciation, as many as men that practice renunciation: it is the life style of every one, individually. In the Book XXXV “Renunciation in the World and in the Souls”, Chapter 2, Master Santiago Bovisio offers several very simple examples:
· Intensifying silence as a habit of inactive action:
· Postponing business till later;
· Solving nothing when I feel enthusiastic or feel inspired:
· Reading newspapers after 3 or four days:
· Interrupting a person when he is relating to me something interesting, but continuing later;
· Solving unpleasant problems that I dislike.
Chapter 7, “”Exercises to achieve action in Renunciation”, reads, “He showed us his own method so that this active inactivity may give the results of action in renunciation. He took the Vow of Silence and practiced it with this method: he postpones for a while anything new coming to his hands (letters, newspapers, news, books, and so on), which his excited mind wants to explore and solve; this way he practices nonaction”.
Men practice unconsciously this method to solve problems by means nonaction. How many times, after one sleeps, wakes up with the solution of a trouble seemingly impossible to unravel. When you calm down the mind during the night, you find the solution in the morning. Likewise, you may practice it being yourself awake, as Master Santiago recommends, with a period of waiting –voluntary inactivity– so that you may calm down the excited mind that blocks a right response. If men practiced this active nonaction in different moments of the day, they would have peace in the bus, at their jobs, in their meetings with people by the street, when they are buying in the supermarket, during the TV time, always. There are infinite moments to practice renunciation and detachment. The reader may try some experiences, and he will see spiritual results at once.

b. Continuous Renunciation

Renunciation is the law of life, and this truth is proclaimed by incessant experiences of men. Birth and death are paradigms that nobody was able to overcome, but hardly to understand, accept and draw conclusions. We should practice renunciation permanently so that our actions may be in harmony with birth and good death, enjoying happiness offered by this way to live. Selfish, covetous and miserly individuals that accumulate possessions unfairly, and violent and oppressive people, are not and cannot be happy; they are condemned to a bad death, here and in the hereafter. Today Humanity is dominated by this mistaken and criminal system, and the results are exposed in nations, groups and individuals: a slow and gradual destruction of the world.
One may understand the Renunciation rationally, and 37 Master Santiago’s Books published here teach Renunciation in thousand different ways, in every form –active and passive, inner and outer, individual and collective. But one should live Renunciation, or is nothing. And to live it one has to practice it continuously, all days a little, like body food. A man is in need of material bread and spiritual bread, at the same time. And when one discovers the intimate secret of detachment, it is very easy to remain at a distance from those things willing to stop us. It is to expose oneself before oneself with a nature that does not adhere to things, although it uses them, and refuses to be trapped by their fascination. It is a very beautiful experience, living among men as if we were not of the world.
By means of exercises of active nonaction, with so many examples in the Teachings, the soul is capable to Renounce, moving the will, in order to decide: “this not, for the time being”. As the time goes by, these simple and direct exercises of active nonaction, are changing the nature of the individual being that begins to live otherwise, egocentrically, immune to shocks coming from the streets of the city. So one can walk among multitudes in a perfect state of peace, like Gandhi, who during the hardest moments of his liberating fight, mixed with people to pray.
In these tumultuous and final times of a civilization broken in pieces, salvation starts from the peace of everyone, and although nations collapse with mourning and weeping, our being will remain impassive and calm while taking in ourselves the Gift of Renunciation.

c. Friendly Recommendations

People get frightened when they are told to give something and share their possessions with others. With fury or cynicism they reject any invitation to renounce in order to get free of human yokes that keep them in animal situation. They collapse if are deprived of something on which they depend existentially. If for some unusual phenomenon all TV transmissions were interrupted in the world for indefinite time, half of Humanity would immediately perish by despair and psychosis. In Argentina we have witnessed a similar phenomenon with catastrophic effects in people of the middle class: the financial “playpen”. Nobody died of hunger, but the majority fell ill mentally, and still they are so: anguished, lost and alienated. People are not interested in freedom, peace or social harmony; do not understand or know what it is. For decades, people have been manipulated and degraded to the condition of insatiable consumerists of food, sex, competitiveness or whatever, if and when there are money benefits. They were degraded to the lowest level. How to get out of the abyss?
Master Santiago’s Teachings explain Renunciation in the most diverse aspects and under different disciplines. They are understood in human History since the most remote times. Also they can be studied with concepts of deep psychology, traditional philosophy, meditation and Holy Hymns. One has to study the Teachings in order to understand the Way of Renunciation: an offering ever brings happiness, and selfishness produces suffering. The reader should test himself by practicing a daily offering with little actions, those that are fit for his person, and check the results. It is not indispensable to meditate in order to act; act directly. We do not give examples because daily activities are proper. Renunciation is in the world of everyone, at once, right now; the key to success is in reserve, silence and discretion as to your actions. Any publicity annuls the results. Moreover, this Renunciation taught by Master Santiago is a strictly personal –not collective– matter. Later, as the practitioner gets certain stability in actions of each day, then the effects of serenity, self-possession and natural joy will come up spontaneously from his person and he will behave properly with his neighbors.
The Teaching 4, Book XXXI, “The Good Way”, reads, “When one starts a work, our first thought has to be of unselfish love, universal fraternity and personal renunciation; our action will succeed and bear abundant fruits however obstacles may be against this labor. One’s thought is ever the leader, and the work will ever be the goal. An arrow properly aimed will hit the target. Once you launched this arrow, who can stop it?”.


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