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On Awareness-Proactivty and Unconsciousness-Ego-Reactivity....

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Teachings of the Masters on Awareness-Proactivty and Unconsciousness-Ego-Reactivity....



Act. Do not react.

--Sri Sri Ravi Shankar



Sin is never in action. It is always in reaction.

-- Swami Chinmayananda



Virtuous ( proactive) action increases intelligence, while sinful ( reactive ) acts decreases intelligence.

--Vidura Neeti ( Mahabharatha )



If you want to progress in your life and grow, act not to react.

--Harbhajan Yogi Bhajan


Respond. Do not react.




Just stay focused. Don't react. Just be a witness and you will see the magic of it.

--Swami Chidanand Saraswati



Be proactive. Do not be reactive.

--Stephen Covey ( Author of 7 habits of highly effective people )


Habitually we react to external stimuli, that is we are generally overwhelmed by retaliatory emotional forces within us demanding appropriate action. But surely this cannot be called 'action' , it is in fact ' re-action' . Discipline of the reasoning mind controls the reactive forces and results in appropriate 'action' rather than 're-action', one should endeavour to establish control and avoid retaliatory behaviour.

--Acharya Mahaprajna



Quality of life depends on what happens in the space between stimulus and response.

-- Stephen Covey



Because of the space between stimulus and response, people have the power of choice; therefore,leaders are neither born nor made — meaning environmentally trained and nurtured. They are self-made through chosen responses, and if they choose based on principles and develop increasingly greater discipline, their freedom to choose increases.

-- Stephen Covey



Reaction is unconscious. You do not know exactly that you are being manipulated. You are not aware that you are behaving like a slave, not like a master. Action out of consciousness is response.

-- Osho



You can act in two ways -- one is reaction, another is response.

Reaction comes out of your past conditionings; it is mechanical.

Response comes out of your presence, awareness, consciousness; it is non-mechanical.

The ability to respond is one of the greatest principles of growth. You are not following any order, any commandment; you are simply following your awareness. You are functioning like a mirror, reflecting the situation and responding to it -- not out of your memory from past experiences of similar situations, not repeating your reactions, but acting fresh, new, in this very moment. Neither the situation is old, nor your response -- both are new.

-- Osho



One who is obsessed with worldly pursuits, one who is body-oriented, cannot really go into this. We need to develop a distance from our mind and not give in to impulsiveness. Those who react are the ones who are living mindlessly. So in a way, we can say that living mindfully is being in meditation.

-- Anandmurti Gurumaa


So action which is born of reaction breeds sorrow. Most of our thoughts are the result of the past, of time. A mind that is not built on the past, that has totally understood this whole process of reaction, can act every minute totally, completely, wholly.

— J. Krishnamurti



Action which is born of reaction breeds sorrow.

— J. Krishnamurti 

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Hi all,

I am Ajay. :smile:


My humble greetings and well-wishes to all of you here. 

Quoted above are a list of teachings of various masters which I compiled myself for a better understanding and contemplation of the message of proactivity and reactivity.


Through study and analysis of the master's teachings, I had come to the understanding that it is proactive action which is what is known as virtue or good karma while reactive action is what is known as sin or bad karma.

While proactivity is what stems from a state of awareness or mindfulness , reactivity on the other hand stems from the ego .


Living in the present moment generates awareness, while living in the past or future due to desires, craving or incessant thinking is what generates the ego.

The state of awareness generates peace and happiness , while the ego generates pain and sorrow.

This is why the Buddha had said thus , "Mindfulness ( constant awareness ) is the true virtue."


And why Eckhart Tolle had stated thus. " Evil is an extreme manifestation of human unconsciousness."


Writing this in my notebook and constant study and contemplation of these teachings from time to time helped me to become a more self-aware, proactive and less reactive person. This understanding brought a deep sense of calmness, peace, contentment and well-being in my life.


I have deep gratitude to the Buddha, Bodhidharma, Padmasambhava,Suzuki, Dilgo Khyentse , Metta Zetty and other Buddhist masters all over the world for their insights and wisdom, which helped me a lot in increasing my self-knowledge and hope the reading of the above mentioned teachings will do the same for you or help in bringing perspective on the nature of the mind. :smile:


Metta and Namaste.

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16 hours ago, ajay00 said:

while reactive action is what is known as sin or bad karma.



Metta and Namaste.


Hi Ajay.




I understand where you are coming from.


Mindfulness (in the present) can yield appropriate responses to situations in daily situations.


Auto responses, particularly negative ones, may not be appropriate to given events.



Having said that, I think not all reactivity is bad or sinful.


For example, I am driving along the road and a vehicle swerves in front of me.

I react instantly by swerving to avoid the collision.



I think being inappropriately reactive, by responding in a particular way, has the potential to be evil, egotistical, or destructive.



We are all uniquely conditioned.

This may range from possessing very good habits  all the way through to being out-rightly negative, or short fused.


A person endowed with high ethical standards may usually react  appropriately to most situations which may present.

On the other hand, one who associates given events to misplaced beliefs (not thinking in the moment) may disgorge responses quite inappropriate to the situation.



Definitively living in the moment with the poise and speed with which to analyze what has really happened and think it through is in a far better position, than one who shoots from the hip.



React, Reaction, Reactivity.


Perhaps the wrong word.??

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