kriyavisesabahula bhogaisvarya hatasayah
na peksante yada satyam na pasyanti sathas tada (1)
O Rama, they who are busy with the diverse affairs in this world in pursuit of pleasure and power, do not desire to know the truth which they obviously don't see.
He who is wise but who has not completely controlled the pleasure-seeking tendencies of his senses, sees the truth and sees the illusion.
And, he who has dearly understood the nature of the world and of the jiva, and who has firmly rejected the world-appearance as the reality, he is liberated and is not born again.
The ignorant strive for the welfare of the body, and not of the self.
Be not like the ignorant, O Rama, but be wise.
To illustrate this, I shall now narrate to you an interesting legend.
In the country known as Magadha, which had an abundance of pleasure-gardens, there lived a sage by name Dasura.
He was engaged in breath-taking penance.
He was a great ascetic, who had no interest at all in worldly pleasures; and he was learned, too.
He was the son of another sage known as Saraloma.
But, as ill-luck would have it, he lost both his parents when he was young.
The deities of the forest took pity on this orphan who was inconsolable in his grief, and they said to him:
O wise boy! You are the son of a sage; why do you weep like an ignorant fool?
Do you not know the evanescent nature of this world-appearance?
Young one, such is the very nature of this world-appearance: things come into being, they exist for a while, and they are then destroyed.
Whatever being there appears to be, from the relative point of view, (even if that being is called Brahma, the creator) is subject to this inevitable end.
There is no doubt about this.
Hence, do not grieve over the inevitable death of your parents.
The young man's sorrow was ameliorated.
He got up and performed the funeral rites of his parents.
Then, he began to lead a rigorously religious life, hemmed in on all sides with do's and don'ts.
Since he had not yet realised the truth, he was immersed in the performance of the rituals, with all their injunctions and prohibitions.
All this created in him a feeling that the whole world is full of impurities.
He sought to live in an unpolluted place.
A tree-top, he decided!
Wishing to live on a tree-top, he performed a sacred rite during which he cut off and offered his own flesh into the sacred fire.
Soon, the fire-deity himself appeared before him and announced, "You will surely attain the wish which has already appeared in your heart."
After accepting the ascetic's worship, fire disappeared.