Wednesday, December 30, 2009
TO A DEAR SOUL
FOR PUTTING DESTINY ABOVE FATE ,
(and refusing to take the hint from God’s stubborn-ness)
"A woman’s surrender to love proclaims her triumph and the triumph of the one she loves. There is no sight better than a woman in love. She is ecstasy incarnate, a poem lifted to the level of a scripture. Hers is the supremest show and it needs no audience. And it does not require an audience because it is divine. Divine is nothing but love rising to perfection and finding expression in surrender, in service. But there is no loss of pride in such surrender, no loss of dignity in service like this. Watch the silent, subterranean ecstasy in the total surrender of a woman in love, surrender not to the man she loves -- make no mistake -- nor to any outside authority ( love knows no authority any way) nor to any moralistic commitment to loyalty or some such inane stuff. But surrender to the flood of her own feelings of love, to the sublimity and intensity of her passion. No woman ever surrenders to the man she loves, for that would not be a surrender to love but a pathetic serfdom to an object of desire. She and all of us always surrender to the glory of the love that exults within us. And when we don’t do that, when we indeed surrender to the person we love, we only belittle love. But when we surrender to love, love itself renders the very need for surrender anywhere else unnecessary, irrelevant."
4.00 AM , Dec 31, 2009
You should be the first one to admit that the sole force driving me to do what I am trying to do is the belief you have chosen to place in me. Its a gamble you have taken and I want to do as well as I can to see you winning -- almost single-handed in this as you are against the collective judgment of the world on me. What a world of difference in what you insist on -- have always insisted on -- and what others have chosen to see in me. Frankly, I am beginning to be won over by your faith in me, and -- my lack of modesty be pardoned ! -- I am also coming round to agree with you that I have been wasting my time trying to win the approval of many of those I loved and respected all my life. Not that I shouldn’t have loved and respected them, for that would have been putting a lie in nature's mouth. I couldn't have done without loving and respecting them, because my soul needed and still needs to be always in love as desperately as my lungs need to breathe oxygen. My soul, my life would have been suffocated to death without being in love. So, I couldn't have done without loving and respecting them, and this did not depend on how they behaved towards me. But I could have done without trying to win their approval for my love. Their approval I should never have needed, never did need. Naturally, all that effort didn't prove worth its while except that it has kept me from dying of bitterness. Better irrational love than rational hate, to say nothing about irrational hate. Better the soft glow of sweet love than the harsh tones of bitterness. And, there must been a reason why I didn’t succumb to the other extreme. A reason also to all those provocations towards that. I have never been the one to regret my mistakes and experiences even when I know them to be mistakes, though I am deeply pained by the savagery of the damage which the whole thing appeared to have inflicted on me. Pained I was but regret I didn’t, and still don't. Nothing was ever achieved through regrets and in any case; life can not be lived backwards. All that our mistakes and experiences have to contribute to our progress is contributed without any effort on our part. That is the way nature works. However, only this evening, I was feeling that perhaps I have frittered away a major portion of my talent on concerns that should never have been mine to begin with, engaging my high intellect (!!!) on lowly issues. A great generalissimo using his talents in winning street-brawls, and not winning there too because his skills were meant for other battles. ( How humble even the humblest can be, eh? ) A lot of energy was dissipated using this mind for tasks that it was never meant to perform. That it did not succeed is a huge shame but no surprise. That was how I felt for a few minutes this evening-- or a few seconds perhaps. But up came a voice declaring ::: everything chooses its time to happen. That time was for that kind of life and experiences and this time is for this. Said a relatively younger John Milton on his 42nd birthday: " Things will happen in the strictest measure even, late though it may be."(He said something like that. I am sure the words were different. But Does that matter? This is what he meant. Or if he didn't, he should have ! Or if he shouldn't have, I should, and I do.) Keep the audience alive so that the show may go on. There is no show -- except the playful merriment in God's works -- which can survive without an audience. May be, in due course, I will attain to God's unmindful ways and enjoy the play for its own sake. As a sportsperson in my early days, I have seen that it is not only possible but even most uniquely enjoyable to play the sport – any sport - for the sheer fun of it, regardless of the audience or its absence. After a certain level of involvement and skill, everything we do rises to the level of divine ecstasy. Like the inexpressible bliss in a mother unmindfully doing little odd things for her child, like the ecstasy of a mystic who doesn't require even a God as an audience ( in his sublime hour, a mystic is always greater and larger than any God he is devoted to, and he knows it. In his humility, though, he stops at calling himself the Son of God, or equal to Him created in His own image with His own hands! Saints and mystics are mischievous with words in thei love for God, as all of us are in any form of love.) But watch the silent, subterranean ecstasy in the total surrender of a woman in love, surrender not to the man she loves, not to any outside authority ( love knows no authority any way) nor to any moralistic commitment to loyalty or some such inane stuff. But surrender to the flood of her own feelings of love, to the sublimity and intensity of her passion, surrender, in short, to the truth of her situation and to the reality of her own being and her feelings. No woman ever surrenders to the man she loves, for that would not be a surrender to love but a pathetic serfdom to an object of desire. No one would and should know it better than you do. A woman in love and all of us always surrender to the force of love within us. And when we don’t do that, when we indeed surrender to the person we love, we belittle love. But when we surrender to love, love itself renders the very need for surrender anywhere else unnecessary irrelevant. A woman’s surrender to love proclaims her triumph and the triumph of the one she loves. There is no sight better than a woman in love. She is ecstasy incarnate, a poem lifted to the level of a scripture. Hers is the supremest show and it needs no audience. And it does not require an audience because it is divine. Divine is nothing but love rising to perfection and finding expression in surrender, in service. But there is no loss of pride in such surrender, no loss of dignity in service like this. But I am still some distance away from that, and it is good for me that I have audience when the child in me needs one. Please be around to watch how the show ends or till the play and the artist reach a level of perfection which requires no audience. Requires no audience yet will be glad to entertain and be entertained. Quite simply, stay on till I attain sainthood – or adulthood, which is the same. Till then, look after this child who must have someone admire his rolling in dust as much as his dressing in white uniform for going to school of sacred heart. Love.
Writing is much as love is: it binds you to your inner truth by connecting you to the outside world.
Writing is as your sweet heart is who would be loved without being understood. Only mediocre writing is totally understandable.
Consistency is a mediocre virtue and does not measure up to the astounding paradoxes of nature.It is a virtue in a moralist but a vice in a genius. There is no such thing as a consistent genius just as there is no such thing as an inconsistent moralist. Great writing is as God is in the act of his Creation: it always contradicts itself, and in doing so it looks at all the contradictions of life and reality.
Across the thin, vaporous boundaries of language sits Truth - inviting, tempting but always receding as your mind advances. And it denies you access not because it means you to know it the less but because it wants you to enjoy it the more.
A writer and his reader are in a secret pact always to enjoy the vague intimations of Truth, but never to reveal or know Truth itself.
A writer is nothing if not God and, like God, must always remain knowable but indefinable, palpable but not expressible. Like the God-experience, the experience of writing -- and reading --- must be for ever enjoyable and for ever unknowable; forever knowable and for ever untranslatable. A writer and his reader are in a secret pact always to enjoy the vague intimations of Truth, but never Truth itself. A writer's words end up saying less than he means to convey and a reader reads more than the meaning unexpressed. And yet, across the thin, vaporous boundaries of language sits Truth, inviting, tempting but always receding as your mind advances towards it. And it denies access not because it means you to know it the less but because it wants you enjoy it the more. If Truth stood where it first appeared, the horizons of your mind would never widen, nor your experience of joy touch the limitless.
Never belittle anything by trying to know it fully, to describe its whole truth. Everything in this universe is a God unto itself and will not yield to you the the core of its secrets. Its under no obligation to feed your petty curiosity. In that sense alone, God resides in every atom and every atom in the universe is a universe by itself, every little soul at once a part of the whole and the whole itself. The moment you focus on any single atom, it slips away and looks askance at you, reflecting the vast universe.
Writing -- like reading -- is much as love is: it binds you to your inner truth by connecting you to the outside world. Writing --like reading -- is as your sweet heart is: she would be loved without being understood. Only mediocre writing is totally understandable from only one angle. And by only one generation. Each new generation rediscovers the classics of the generations gone by. Great writing lends itself to new meanings for new generations. And thus every generation finds something entirely new in an old classic. This is how classics attain immortality.
Great writing is as spring is: it renews itself every year, bringing newer flowers of newer shades . Truth is always fresh; and it always refreshes those who receive it.
Great writing is as God is: it always contradicts itself, and in doing so it looks at all the contradictions of life and reality. Consistency is a mediocre virtue and does not measure up to the astounding paradoxes of nature. It is a virtue in a moralist but a vice in a genius. There is no such thing as a consistent genius just as they is no such thing as an inconsistent moralist. Consistency comes in handy where goals are narrow and targets low. But a genius rises to dizzy, unseeable heights as much as he plummets to shocking depths. His inconsistencies are inexplicable as the contradictions of God and nature are. A great writer has no use for pedestrian virtues like consistency for he has to traverse vast zones full of extreme opposites, travelling through continents of scorching summers and freezings colds.
Tuesday, December 29, 2009
A prophet is a poet who has come to believe in the truth of his own poetry. A poet is a prophet who distrusts his own prophecy.
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
"YOU CAN ENJOY YOUR DREAMS AS REAL FOR EVER; ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS MAKE SURE YOU NEVER WAKE UP."
When you dig deep enough, you will find that the foundations of the edifice of happiness are often laid on expectations the fulilment of which would quickly tire us. But some childish obstinacy drives us to madness in pursuit of dreams which we already know cannot open the doors to abiding happiness. I have learn to cherish dreams and learn also never to seek their fulfilment.The beauty of a dream lies in its being only a dream and its being too delicate to survive the touch of reality. If you want to enjoy a dream for ever, make sure you never wake up. The ability to be in love and happy with a dream as a dream only is a rare virtue, given only to those who are never prejudiced against reality. Hold you citadles. You are already moving towards where you should be heading. Yes, there will be set backs and there will be pain and even humiliation along the way, but keep you feet steady. And do not dread nightmares. Your nightmares are only as real as your dreams.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
"And, finally, I seek the power and the opportunity to spread to the four corners of the universe the incense of the limitless love that is in my heart because no pain is greater than that of love confined and imprisoned in a heart. And no happiness is greater and more fulfilling than that born of showering love unconditionally and unhestitatingly on everything and everyone who comes across our path. Love free from the painful constrictions of attachment, love that is grateful for being accepted, love that sings songs of worship and gratitude because it knows no other language, love that wants simply to be allowed to live on without seeking any recompense.
Love keeps quietly reaching up to your door every dawn, asking you to look out of your window when morning walks upon the hills, love urges you to behold the new born sun , the secretly smiling flowers, the dew upon leaves who are yawning and stretching still half asleep, the trees that have waited patiently all night long for a fresh dawn to break the chill, trees that now tip-toe towards the bright sky with joyous hope to welcome another day --- none of them waits for a reason to be happy. Why do we? And all of them -- the flowers, the leaves, the dew and the trees -- rejoice even when they know they may have to face rough weather all day for many days. They are ready and don't complain and neither do they forget to spread fresh air and fragrance to fill the whole atmosphere. In giving fragrance, they give all of themselves.
"And watch the eternally innocent stray dogs, playfully chasing one another, so completely and sublimely unmindul of another unpitying day of hunger and humiliation that they may have to fight again. They neither pity themselves nor are they ungrateful to the happiness that this hour brings to them. Why are we? Nothing is more divine, deifying and uplifting than the sight of Nature playing little games with itself. This is life at work, enjoying itself."
God or Universe keeps waiting pateintly for us to sing these songs. And happiness is the language through which it understands our music. Be happy. And you will not need to thank God or Universe in any other way. Love, gratitude and happiness are the only prayers there are, or were.
Look forward to a great life. You have done nothing to deserve anything less.
Monday, December 14, 2009
The toughest person to meet and completely understand in your life is you. The most difficult thing to do in life is to stand away from one "self" and have a clear, full view of its shades and contours. It has the nature of a parallel line which runs closest to you and never goes away but nor comes closer. Like a true flirt, it is always tantalisingly near and yet safely away - never close enough for you to touch. And no one possesses the power to allure you through deception more than this wily coquet has. It feeds you with all the reasons to justify its actions, never allowing you to look at it as it is, except through the prejudiced eye of subjectivity. It is there in the way when you want to fall completely in love with anyone other than this flirt. And yet, if you tear its veil apart, you will find this flirt suddenly transformed into the only source from where all your love flows. That is why no love is possible without self love. But guard against greed posing as self love. Self love and selfishness are two different things -- often two extreme opposites. Self lends itself to transfromation into an enobling surrender to something outside. Even selflessness is a form of self love, which selfishness is not. The ability to meet these two and distinguish the fake from the real is given to saints -- and one can be a saint without being religious.
HARDLY A BARGAIN
This universe – just its known part -- spreads across zillions and zillions of fathomless light-years. Considering that the speed of light is roughly 300,000 kilometers per second, these are distances that Humans are never likely to traverse, even accounting for the likely advancements in science and technology in foreseeable future. And millions of times more are the events that take place every millionth of a second in this yet expanding universe. For us to be able to experience even a part of these events, we would need instruments and machines that travel many, many times faster than the speed of light. And scientists hold no hope of our putting together such instruments.
And yet, the experience of the vastness of this universe is not something entirely unknown to us. For you and me, there is only one instrument on which these experiences are recorded, felt and lived through. That tiny instrument is the five feet something – a few inches more, or less – of human body and an even tinier mind placed therein. But such is the range and power of that mind that it can encompass the entire boundless universe in an infinitely small fraction of a second, making the speed of light appear a creature of stone-age shot in slow motion. Universes upon universes and ages upon ages race past our eye with a smoothness unknown to us in any form of travel invented by us.
Respect this instrument, and don’t let anyone belittle or humiliate it. Your mind or your “self” is the only thread you have to connect you to life. We barter away this ‘self’ in very cheap bargains in exchange for attention from those whose love we wish to secure for this very ‘self’, or the possessions we wish to place at the feet of this self to keep it happy. It is a poor bargain, totally unacceptable, because we get the ‘self’ pass through insults in pursuit of respect and happiness that we seek for it. It is only for this ‘self’ that you want , desire or pursue everything. The irony is that we sell out this self in exchange for the things we want to buy for it. Nowhere is this more evident than in our pursuit of love of those who do not value it.
This instrument, this mind, this ‘self’ deserves better. Learn to love and respect it, and you will find love everywhere. And you will love everything. Because everything is contained in this self, this mind, this you. And out of this realization will be born boundless love and endless humility. Everything will be yours then because everything and yourself are inseparable, the seeming partition caused by the mind’s eye tightly shut.
Mind alone is God, mind alone is the whole universe – nothing exists outside it. Mann se bada na koi …….. Mann he devta, mann he ishwar. Mann ujjiara jab jab phelai, jag ujjiara hoi, said Sahir.
A prayer is nothing but our way assuring ourselves that we are not completely alone and helpless on this planet. The whole universe rises to back us if our cause is noble, which is another name for respecting the laws of the universe. Anything that runs against these laws is irreligious and therefore painful.
The term God is only an abbreviation for the general order of design of the universe and the energy that moves through it. There is nothing supernatural about it, and those who we think have found God have said that much. Budhha said it through his loud silence on the question of God. Jesus described the acknowledgement of the overwhelming Law of the order of universe as Acceptance. Nanak called it “being happy living in accordance with Hukam or Bhaana, or the Will of God, or the Will of Nature. Islam is full of references to "razaa', or Will of the Unknown. Surrender to this Law is the essence of the Gita.
Pain is the direct consequence of trying to run against the current of the Law of the Universe, or the Will of God. Desire for Immortality of form is an act of defiance of the law of change, and hence any pursuit of this desire is an invitation to pain.
A prayer is a return to sanity, the acknowledgement of the need to flow in the direction of the current of Law. Defiance of Law is an attempt to distort the picture of the universe or a small part of it, and a prayer is an attempt to rectify that distortion. Humility is nothing more than an acceptance of the reality that we are mere cogs, however important, in a large wheel to further the march of Evolution.
A prayer is an expression of this humility. A prayer is addressed always and only to oneself. That is why we generally pray alone, or close our eyes while praying in a congregation. It is a pilgrimage into the boundless yet unknown reservoirs of life force that resides within us and which alone has the power to lift us beyond the bounds of the possible. It is nature's way of reconciling the paradox that while the Whole contains its parts, each part also contains the Whole, as both religion and science have shown us. Every atom in the universe is full of mysteries which are as innumerable, incomperensible and fascinating as the mysteries of the universe at large.
A prayer is also an attempt of an atom to display its ability to reflect the whole universe, holding "infinity in the palm of his hand and eternity in an hour." Its also a proof that the vast universe and its tiniest part converse in a common language. The atom and the universe, the part and the whole, the Atma and the Parmatma are inseparable and indistinguishable, and a prayer is the common language in which they converse. Begging is not praying because begging is devoid of love, while prayer is born of infinite love. Begging is a proclamation of insecurity; a prayer is a song of faith, trust and assurance. Prayer invokes love; begging invokes pity.
The worst form of begging is the one addressed to the Almighty Universe or God. It is like asking a mighty emperor to feed the dog at your farm house, a dog whose responsibility is only yours to share. Neither the dog nor the emperor will be too pleased with your act.
Turn your prayers into songs of love, and they shall be answered -- with love.
There is only one virtue that all our experience of happiness and pain, all our triumphs and defeats, all the wealth of love and the extreme and shattering poverty of lovelessness give us. And that virtue is the Goddess of all virtues for only through that can we reach the ultimate understanding of self and love and everything that is important to our living. That virtue is also the essence of all loving and all happiness. That virtue, simply put, is humility, boundless, pure and totally spontaneous. Humility -- not submissiveness, not feigned modesty or smoodge - but humility born of complete self-belief and assurance --- this virtue alone is the path of saints, and saints alone live in eternal peace and happiness. And only a person truly at peace with himself and the world around him can be really happy And only a happy person can be genuinely good and loving, kind and eternally forgiving of himsel and others.Humility at the Temple of Truth is the only religion there is. Truth can be --and generally is and will be -- inconvenient to us and to our beliefs about who we are, because we have grown up feeding on alluring myths: myths like 'We deserve better than we get' from life and the world, or that our suffering is the doing of others or that the only reason we suffer is our innocnence, purity and goodness of heart.At The temple of Truth, we discover the only source of the kind of life we get -- and that source is our conduct, our beliefs, our desires, our dreams, our expectations of life and the diference between these expectations and the emotional and material investments we are willing to make towards the fulfilment of these dreams and expectations.If love has chosen you to receive its harvest of pain, you are lucky, especially if life has also given you the vision and wisdom to gain from this pain , to learn from it, to make it the doorway to abiding peace and happiness. Never let pain be its own cause and effect, but transform it into a means for you to grow as a person. A time will come when you will look this pain in the eye, smile at it and at yourself and laugh loudly at your association with this pain. Then you will thank this pain in all sincerity for having come your way just when and how and why it did. You will then move on to be always in the service of the world that houses you. Then - and then alone - will you discover the true meaning of pain and of love. Then will you fully experience its rich, lofty and ennobling influence. Then alone will you bathe in the cool glow of love and will always and always want to give more and more of yourself to anyone who values it. Love and giving have never been parted nor ever will be.
Posted by harcharan bains at 10:34 AM
Labels: Humility at the Temple o truth is the only religion there is.