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Shun Bad Company

Excerpts from Gurudev’s discourse on the Narada Bhakti Sutras

Dusangah sarvathaiva tyajyah

Shun bad company. What is bad company? That company which fuels negativity is bad company. Suppose you go and sit with a friend and pour out all your negativity and you come back feeling even worse. That is a bad company. One who makes you believe in your negativity more strongly is a bad company. You go and sit with some friends, talk to them, discuss your problems and when you come back you feel lighter, feeling all your negativity is just an illusion. That is good company.

It is easy to get into bad company. There are people who fuel negativity. You say, “this is hopeless”, they say, “Yes, yes, it is not hopeless, it is horrible.” That is a bad company. In good company when you discuss your problems you move away from them feeling lighter, feeling that the problem is really not that big - it is nothing, it can be solved.

By all means, shun bad company. Because it is the company that you keep that builds you up. Dusangah sarvathaiva tyajyah - what does bad company do? It creates feverishness and obsession in you, brings more and more desires in you, more lust, anger, and delusion. Finally, you find yourself in hot soup - far away from love. It is like being in concrete negativity, frustration personified - that is a bad company.

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July 2019