It is the greatest manifestation of power — this tremendous restraint; self-restraint is a manifestation of greater power than all outgoing action. A carriage with four horses may rush down a hill unrestrained, or the coachman may curb the horses. Which is the greater manifestation of power, to let them go or to hold them? A cannonball flying through the air goes a long distance and falls. Another is cut short in its flight by striking against a wall, and the impact generates intense heat. All outgoing energy following a selfish motive is frittered away; it will not cause power to return to you; but if restrained, it will result in development of power. This self-control will tend to produce a mighty will, a character which makes a Christ or a Buddha. Foolish men do not know this secret (I, 33)
It is most unfortunate that we the children of Karma Bhumi Bharat do not know even the primary lessons of the science of karma yoga. How does our power get frittered away? It can be compared to water kept in a vessel full of holes. When we engage ourselves in unproductive work our energy is frittered away. To stop this wastage of energy our great rishis discovered the technique of controlling the sense organs. For this we have to fix a goal in life, make the intellect oriented towards the goal and keep the mind under control. Once the mind is under control then starts conservation of spiritual energy at subtle levels and mind becomes more and more purified leading to the awakening of the Satwic intellect. Spiritual progress is the net result.
Swamiji wanted every one to be aware of one’s inner strength and through proper planning and execution of work awaken the Self within.