• http://www.amazon.com/The-Thomases-Road-Realization-ebook/dp/B009BATQUA/

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

The right direction to point our finger

It’s well past midnight but a thought has been turning around in my mind space in various forms, moving fast to maturity and relentlessly pushing to be born.

What is it? The spur is the constant pointing fingers that I notice. The holier than thou attitude of vegetarians, religious fundamentalists or married women. The most recent catalyst to this thought was a judgement made of prostitutes and men who go to prostitutes. Wives hate such husbands and such women. But I want to ask-Is the world and people by nature perfect?  I did ask; why is there a system of marriage? It is to protect women and children was the expected answer. So, there it is; we all subconsciously know the truth, and our conscious mind chooses to live in denial.  
Let’s first think-why have people been educated and taught to behave in a civil way, and why are there laws and punishment? Religions did not exist when man was in the wild. The rules of relationships and marriage were different in the old times when population was much lower. If not for education and directives from religion given at a later stage of civilized living, given by our elders and ancestors, what could have been the result? The result would have been chaos- abuse of all sorts, polygamy, abandoned women, lonely lives willing to do anything to meet their needs, and what not. I don’t care to say it all. So let’s just thank society and religion that things are not any worse than what they are. That situations are not at its worst possible.  It’s all happening under the carpet, but definitely not to the extent it could have if there had not been education, laws and punishment. But let’s also face the crude facts.
The fact about why it could have been worse. We just shouldn’t deny that animal instincts are given in all. We know that ideally there should have been more women than men in the world. Why does nature decide such a ratio if it favoured monogamy? Clearly man is designed to seed many soils. Living in a civilized world it becomes easy to be judgmental about the wrongs in society and be shocked that there are such men who want more than one woman and forget how people are actually designed by nature. Population was supposed to be controlled by diseases and deaths and attacks from animals, not by preventing man from practicing sex unti he gets married or by convincing him to be in monogamous relationships. People are liberating themselves from the shackles of norms and it irks the conservatives. There are problems from that but it doesn’t help being judgmental. Instead, let’s look at the brighter picture rather than focusing forever on the darker one. Look at those men who follow their education and overcome their natural instincts and care for their woman and children and let’s rather applaud them for doing what might not have been in their nature, than forever admonish those who go astray.

How worse could life have been? I saw a video of how six survivors of a plane crash spent 24 hours in a forest. I realized that no matter how much I might love the forests, looking at them from the safety of my home, I have to accept that the forest is a place of fear and especially so at night. You cannot really sleep at night in the jungle (if per chance you land up in the wild) because if you do, you might become the food of some animal. But social structure as devised by our ancestors allows us to sleep at night not fearing animals and walk about freely without fear in the day time, not fearing our own kind. Shouldn’t we thank more than we crib?
Let’s accept that the world is made imperfect and let’s not demand a perfect world as if it were our birth right, as if instincts don’t exist, as if ones needs were easy to overlook or suppress because fulfilling it might sometimes mean taking what is another's. Let’s rather thank that we are given a reasonably safe haven in an actually unsafe world. When we start with accepting the truth, we will more easily learn to be happier.

Now, having accepted that the world is unsafe and imperfect and that we are actually given a more than fair deal by society, do we then allow what is considered wrong and refrain from the liberty to point fingers? There is no right, there are the wrongs and then there is the lesser evil? Killing an animal for food is an unavoidable evil; plucking a plant for the same purpose is also acceptable as without having food you cannot survive. Whatever you do for survival of yourself and of your species is fair but whatever you do for your greed is unfair. As much as you take for your need is fair to take, as per natures law, but if you are a glutton, it is not appreciated by nature. If it were, there would have been wild animals that suffer from obesity.Well fed ones are easily caught by their predators before they could be called obese.
The same rule of moderation applies to physical pleasures as well. Animals usually have a mating season, they don’t mate all the time.  Throughout the day, they are obsessed with the search for food to survive and so sex is not their primary thought. We, unfortunately, are well fed and with nothing much to do while sitting in front of our computers at work, and so we think of nothing but sex. Our effort for winning our bread is not as life and death a matter as it was to find food in the wild. So that is the heart of the problem of excessive sex focus in today’s society. There isn’t enough hunger for food to push down that other instinct.
The wrong then is not being busy enough and overindulgence in pleasures beyond what could be called need. But in which direction does this awareness let us point our finger? When you are well fed and idling away your time for too long, rather than using that time looking at others and pointing at them, please point fingers at yourself, get some productive work to do, and remember that in each one of us the whole world resides.

Friday, March 30, 2018

What when you are cheated and lied to ..in your relationship?

Today is good Friday.  As the priest asked us to meditate on the wounds of Christ, I was set to thinking on what could be the most painful kinds of wounds and the most difficult lessons in life. And so I am here again after a long time with something to ponder in my Thinking Space.

There are those not so difficult lessons to master;  people to whom you have done good may be the ones who ditch you. You may be misunderstood by your friends,  humiliated for no fault of yours, deserted by those you expected to be with you. Piece of cake to handle. Okay, well, more or less...,particularly if you have experienced such things a couple of times, and if the relationship was not more than that of friendship. The thought that can help through, is that, if Jesus,despite being the purest of pure, in spite of the miracles he performed, was misunderstood by the masses and disowned by any of his disciples; we don't really have to lose our self- esteem over these things. People can be like that.

But as I look around I see a very difficult lesson that many are struggling with owing to the different nature of  relationships in the current times. More often than not, relationships are no longer  exclusive. Some with consent, some without, have more than one partner at a time.  Cheating someone who has been perfect in the relationship is not so difficult, unfortunately. Lying, lying and more lying to someone trusting, loving, sincere and honest is also, sadly normal . 

But Jesus says. who has not done these things, can raise the first stone.
Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.Luke6: 37 
So, no, this post is not to judge anything. But I am here wondering, that if you have been cheated, how do you survive it? I see a lot many struggling to cope and I feel pained. After a lot of deliberation, I thought of writing this post and just hope to be of some help.

First of all,  it is important to accept that it is not easy to cope with such a situation. You did your all, you don't know what was lacking in the relationship for the person to look outside of it. Maybe it was just to find a new thrill, a new exploration, a new chase. If in an open relationship, I guess people handle it, but in closed, exclusive ones?  There is breech of trust. Getting out is one option, but if you want to be in for whatever reasons, how do you do that? Maybe everything else is perfect and you do not expect another new person to be less of a cheat eventually. What questions would help you decide?

One is, quite obviously, you surely have to have the other person, coming down on knees begging your forgiveness and telling you that you are  wanted in their life. Giving assurance that they won't lie or cheat and that they would bring more transparency into the relationship is also important.

But last time he promised the same,  when you had seen the beginnings of an affair?  But he just hid it well from you this time around when he got connected again? 
Hmm what then...?
So, you still want the relationship, in spite of these factors!???

If so, you have no choice but to LET GO. No I don't mean the relationship. I know you don't want to do that. But you have to let go the need to control your spouse/partner.  There are things you cannot control, such as another person's honesty and sincerity to you, his feelings for another. You cannot be assured that a person who is used to lying, will turn truthful overnight. Even if they do, you may find it hard to give up doubting. No... saying how much it hurts you, condemning or expressing your fears and hoping the other would understand, may not help because still in no way can you be sure that he won't lie again. Lies in relationships are like that pus filled pimple that simply never seems to go, just keeps coming back. Some germs are incorrigible. So whats the point in incessantly begging for honesty?

Then what the hell can you do?
Exactly, we come back to it again. NOTHING. The only way is to let go of the  effort to control the situation and take up prayer to God. Pray that your relationship gets over the mess. Pray that it gets strengthened with honesty and sincerity. But be your own self, do your own thing, be engaged in your own. Don't keep trying to make sense out of it, to find out why it happened; there is no reason. Don't convert 'keeping an eye on your spouse' into your job. Don't pester your spouse or partner with calls or messages, hoping to crowd out any possible lover or checking to know whether he is on call with someone. All this will only make you insufferable to your partner and it will also make your every moment a hell. It is not the loving thing to do to your partner (who probably is repentant ) or , needless to say, to YOURSELF.

Yes, this requires a lot from you, because the only thing in your hand is...... nothing, but to pray for healing in your relationship and to let go your need to control.  It requires relinquishing a reliance on your own wisdom and trusting entirely on god.
It also requires humility to accept that you are not all important for the one you love and maybe never will be. He/she has not found you enough and it's more sensible not to expect that anymore (because you had been more than enough).

Yes, you have to be SUCH a bigger person .......But that's spiritual evolution; you are bigger than the way you started off. Possibly God loves you so much, he gave you a difficult lesson to master in your spiritual journey. And hey, you are not intended to suffer for someone else's failings, but you are expected to learn your invaluable lessons.

Yes, you have to hold your tongue from begging for honesty, your hands from checking his/her phone.Yes, it requires suffering alone and eating those words that you actually want to throw at your partner so that he/she would hurt as much as you do. Your ego is hurt, you may want to even opt out immediately. He/she made you feel so small and insignificant. True. but...
If you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you. Even sinners do that. Luke 6:33

Never forget that life is transient and that"In every crisis there is an opportunity". Maybe it is your opportunity to grow or an opportunity for your relationship to deepen. So, check out your resilience. Be good. Don't hurt your partner just because you are hurting. Not the loving thing to do.  Yeah, you may still end up doing that sometimes. Well, forgive yourself too.

PS- There is indeed the possibility that liars stay liars despite your prayers. They may stay blind to your pain when they resort to blame and other tactics or strategies to evade your questions or to hide facts from you. If you are indeed with such a self serving, habitual or pathological liar, prayers will help you find enough evidence for that sooner than later and will give you the resolve to dissociate from that painful relationship and to find your peace.........

Sunday, January 25, 2015

The gate to reality

Life, its issues, miseries and trials..are, but unreal.
Listen, to the trees, the clouds, the vast endless sky..so beautifully,
silently, speaking..what is real.

The words, the hurts, the diseases, the agony..all, indeed unreal.
The rousing of the sleeping spirit; the inner calm ..so tranquil,
through life's painful prodding..  is, deeply real.

Half asleep or wide awake; the body still slumbers, stays unreal.
but with the first stirring of the soul ....arises beauty
surreal..so real, ethereal.

All that was the world, was life, to the body... but dies with death, is unreal.
All that is gained, in spirit....through life, through death
..is real....is real...is real.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

The Duality Game

Some philosophical thoughts were stirred up as I watched the movie 'Jumanji'. It is about two kids who start playing a mysterious board game in which the consequences were very real! Disasters and creatures were unleashed on them. Running away from the game made them suffer with the consequences for 26 long years of physical/ emotional wandering, until two other kids who moved in, carried the game to its conclusion.

The rule of the Game (that the first pair hadn't read) had been that all the demons unleashed with each throw of the dice could only be reversed if the game was ended by reaching its home and by calling out JUMANJI. 

And so when the game ended, the two kids who started the game did come back to the same year and same age as when they had sat for the game; but there  was a difference, that they were wiser than their age had been...

Isn't that how life is! We can run away and hide from what our actions lead our life into but it won't remedy the consequences...won't put back the demons we nonetheless unleashed. But if we make an effort to face our circumstances or brickbats or whatever; if we do our very best and survive through to the end, to our lives very end we would have truly concluded the game of life successfully. And moreover we would be a wiser soul for having played the game and competently! 

 "So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy"John 16: 22. This is the way Jesus,  has called us home.

The world we live in, is the game and the world we are called to, is our home. That is the duality of our soul's existence. 

Every duality has a divide, a barrier of differences and every duality has a pulling force as well, that seeks to end the divide. Something like the longing for home for the man out on a journey...or the longing for love, as with the duality of man and woman. 

The divine consciousness forms a duality when it has existence in its creation. This division is into two poles which has a mutual pull that tries to end the divide. 

It is the pulling force of love, the longing for home..... the call to be whole again. 

The rule then, is to be strong and hold on; to hope, faith and love till the very end....

Sunday, December 8, 2013

The Light Within

I heard a story in church a few months ago that answered some very crucial questions I had been having.  Today I am in the frame of mind to share them.

Can we be available to everybody? Is being available and ready to help someone be a wrong decision in the larger scheme of things? Sometimes do we have to refuse and become bad to be in fact right in a larger scheme?

Here's the story that will help us compare our situation and take a stance.

Many years ago in a little village on a rocky seacoast, there was a lighthouse. A new lighthouse keeper was once appointed from that village. He was a good man whom all the villagers loved and often sought help from as he never said 'No" to any request. He was given a limited amount of oil every month, enough to light the lamp to full flame for a month.

It so happened one month that a relative who lived nearby dropped in one night and said his son had an exam and the lights were out..could he spare him some oil
The man wanted to help his relative and gave him some oil
Soon one after another followed with one genuine need or other and the kind keeper didnt feel it right to deny them help..

But by the month end there was little oil to run the light to full flame. The light was dim.
One fateful night three ships crashed on that rocky beach and thousands of lives were lost.

Such an event had never happened since the lighthouse had been constructed.
When the keeper was questioned by the authorities he admitted that the flame was low as he had given some oil to needy neighbours
"You were given just one Job, to keep the light burning of your lighthouse, you can never compromise your job to light a few people's lamps.
In keeping a few lamps aflame for few hours you compromised the lives of thousands of people"

The lightkeeper realised his great folly but too late

The moral of the story is that we have to know what our job really is. Some decisions call us to deny our help and availability to a few but it might in fact be for a relatively better and more enduring good, that which is our real calling. Our first and foremost responsibility is to the light within us. If any circumstance makes our flame, our good light any lesser, we make life hell for those dependent on our light. 

Somehow this story helped me become sure of some decisions of my life and I hope it would help others too.
Keep your lights burning

Thursday, February 21, 2013

CAREFUL!!...about that 'weak spot'

I recently cut my finger very badly on a glass.... following which I would hit my finger again and again at the same spot. I am sure u have noticed this in your life too….The weak spot is under attack. I became very alert. Initially, I thought I was just getting more aware when I might be hitting that spot in my finger often otherwise as well. But I noticed it would get hit in very unpredictable and out of the ordinary ways
Why does that happen? The weak spot has to be protected with extra care, as there do seem to be some powers that seek for it.

'Elimination  of the weak or the unfit' theory?  There does seem to be some energies that work on eliminating the unfit.  The weak deer of the pack is left behind and is caught. The shark is said to be able to smell even a drop of blood in the ocean and come for it. Some how the weak spot does seem to have a vibe that brings to it the powers that attack on it and eliminate it. It is a blind power. But it can be surmounted. When the inner strength rises to the challenge, it can indeed subdue these forces.

Nobody can ride your back unless it is bent. You might say you weren’t weak and yet you were dominated upon. Think carefully, you might not have noticed that weakness. Sometimes one's goodness can become a weakness…rather one's  naiveness.  Have u noticed how the manipulative  people don’t even trust the cleanest of person and how the good man trusts even the wilest one? It is trust that can be cheated not the mistrust.  This can be said of an individual, it can be said about a nation.  India as a country is weak because of its tolerance and easy going attitude towards many things and it gets hit again and again by terror forces.

One has to learn to see objectively and not see others as we see ourselves.  Innocence and naiveness is not always a virtue, one has to learn to be wise as a serpent even when innocent as a dove. One needs to learn toughness, hardness and decisiveness. When the eliminating energies begin to revolve around you, use it to bring out the insurmountable power within you that is above all powers. Become more, and rise above your weakness. Then you would be fit enough to survive.

It is said that one's past life sins are responsible for the tragedies of the current life. I don’t believe that because Abel was the son of the first man Adam and he was murdered by his brother Cain out of jealousy. His was obviously a first birth and his past life sins can definitely not be responsible! I had been looking up the regression session readings of some people. A farmer’s earlier birth had been of a chemistry professor. A poor girl's earlier birth had been of a preacher in church…It is not always a progression to a better birth!!?? A sage in one mythological story was born in the next birth as a deer because he had got attached to a deer during his final years in the forest!!

It may not be just about desire and attachment though. Maybe the life of a chemistry teacher failed to teach somethings that the life of a farmer could? To get a clear idea of anything we need to see life from different perspectives, we need to see life through different kinds of eyes. Death can only kill the body . Just as in a play, there is no real loss but lessons gained are there, buried in the spirit that needs to be tapped into and opened to reach our own fullness gained from a complete view. Each life may show us a different aspect of a bigger truth; such as 'a different part of the elephant' but if we stay blind we will not see the tail to be a part of something bigger.

With each episode in life, we are meant to open our eyes..wider.... and connect the links to get the whole picture. With each attack on us, we are meant to recognise our weak spots and are supposed to eliminate it one by one till we are unconquerable.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

'Saying- A place to say it...

Are these mountains or mole hills?
"Each man is cause for his own misery" is what Vipassana teaches. WAIT A MINUTE before interpreting this statement! It  is explained further with example as follows- A person speaks harshly to you. His anger was a projection of his own suffering. You feel hurt by it. Your hurt feelings are your own reaction and so each person is creating, generating his own unique brand of suffering. Indeed a person's feelings of hate, anger, hurt are all generated by his own body. He can control it and give himself a different reaction, by understanding, by confidence, by clarity and if an action is required take action- a pro-action not a reaction.

So in that context“One cant clap with one hand” is definitely a statement guilty of being used in wrong places. The saying has a context and cannot be used everywhere. Where as per what vipassana teaches, we are all guilty of clapping with one hand, or in other words we are always slapping ourselves!

Taali ek haat se nahi bajti (One cant clap with one hand) is a saying we hear often. It is one saying which has often irritated me by its thoughtless usage. I am irritable, I get irritated with stupidity. If I am angered by a person using this saying and I slap him; would he say he was as much responsible for my having slapped him? After all no issue arises from one party? But really wasn't my anger my own problem. He was just using a saying what he felt was right, which I felt was out of context! I have a right to my feelings, my irritation, my anger, but in my anger I am not allowed to sin. 

Recently the above saying was used by a spiritual guru for a horrifying abuse case. In one's own lust aroused with or without provocation, one is not allowed to hurt or kill another. Lust is an individual's own problem, just as anger, as greed- the three gates to hell.  

A same girl walking the street may be ignored by one guy, admired by another and assaulted by a third. The girl completely dressed or semi naked does not make the difference. What makes the difference is how cultured the guy is. In fact it has been observed by women, that completely clad girls are evaluated by many guys as being “not confident” and weak and may be more prone to be 'taken for a ride' rather than their ‘confident’ boldly dressed sisters. Also it is a fact that many guys are more attracted to or aroused by completely clad women (in fact like those in burqa) because of the ‘mystery’ factor. Each man is provoked by different things and each man reacts to provocation in different ways. Even to the same 'provocation' every man reacts in different ways, (or may not find it to be provocation at all!). All issues arise in our selves. As Buddha implied-Someone may be trying to give you something BUT it is up to you to take it or not.

We find ways of coping with our issues or our faults. Self reflecting people analyse themselves, realize their faults and change for the better. People with evasive attitudes and pride find someone to blame and think that removing or harassing them will heal their own pain or issue. Hitler coped with his issues of inferiority, rejection, failure etc by blaming. His attitude was his fault. Punishing the Jews for what arises in him was his weakness. Rather than dealing with his inferiority etc in a mature way by self analysis he targeted his hate and issues onto a group of people. Would punishing and eliminating the Jews remove the miseries his own body, his mind was generating? Nothing can be blamed on provocation. Our action reaction or pro-action may have causes but nothing can justify an ill deed done on another; at best we can express our view or advice.

The truth is I LOVE sayings, quotes, some are my very favourite and I use then often but I understand that to each saying there is not just a place, a context…but also maturity.  But yes I err sometimes too. I tell my eight year old daughter  'Baal ki khaal mat nikalo' (Don’t try to skin a hair). She asks me what it means and I tell her that it means 'don’t try to find issues where there are none.' Once as I was making ‘paranthas’ (cooked dough) in the kitchen I told my five year old son (related to some issue at the moment)- ‘Don’t make a mountain out of a mole hill’ He is too young to understand as much English and he thought it was some abuse so he reflexively abused me back saying 'muli ka paratha YOU'.(Which means -'It's not me, rather you are a radish parantha') Mountain, molehill, muli…indeed they sound similar! 

Sayings are good and useful to explain something briefly and are like unforgettable tablets that can be preserved by the hearer; but they have to be used at a right place, context, and maturity or it would be more harmful than any good. 

By the by I am sure you agree that I was advising my kids as every mother should?  Neither of them understood it at first, but one tried to find out what I meant and another, the 'younger' one got agitated and reacted to assumptions. 

And another thing before I wind up; please try to recognize the baffaloes and bulls before you advice, as it might not only be futile but also could be dangerous for you. I am not trying to discourage or scare you, but you know..there are these SAYINGS...

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