Friday, April 30, 2010
# Soldiering for peace and for love calls for courage much greater and nobler than that required for battle.
Only a saint can rise to the stature where she can accept offers of help from those who hate her, and she can do so without having her self esteem compromised in any way. That is because she has not made her identity a slave to vanity, nor has she allowed her vision to be so blurred as to lose the distinction between true moral dignity and false ego. What she is achieving by accepting the help from the enmy is not so much a personal gain -- she is a saint and therefore not after personal gain anyway ; what she is truly expressing is the courage to help her detractor have a shot at greatness. She is actually allowing her detractor to rise in his own esteem. In doing so, she is sacrificing her temprorary sense of what others call "self-esteem" but what she views merely as "vanity". She would not allow that vanity to come in the way of her providing her opponent a platform to exercise and exhibit his gretness , his generosity. She is in fact making it possible for the good in him to come forth, even at the expense of her own perceived dignity. Quite often our ability to accept the enemy's grace is a more true measure of the magnitude of our character than our courage to fight him. It is easy to fight the enemy -- everybody would do it -- because in doing so one has got a whole universe of jsutifications . And also a chance to show off one"bravery" or the "courage to be martyr." Said Guru Nanak, " A true martyr is one who has the courage to live as if he were dead." Only saints have that courage. Only Guru Gobind Singh can sing songs of love after an embattled life in which he lost his father and his four sons, apart from making numerous other sacrifices. Only Guru Gobind Singh could extend a hand of friendship to his tormentors without any fears of being dubbed a coward. He knew he was a soldier and did not have to prove anything to anyone: this he had done already throughout his life. But when the call came to demonstrate spiritual bravery to pursue peace, he ws not found wanting. That is why we do not call him just a soldier but a "saint-soldier". It is tough to be a lover of peace when the world expects you to indulge in bloodshed and retribution. Soldiering for peace and for love calls for a courage much greater and nobler than that required in the battle-field. Such courage is demonstrated only by thsoe whose for whom courage was not a sentiment to impress or boast but a daring to pursue truth. Soldiering for peace and for love calls for a courage far nobler than that required on the battle-field. Those who dare to pursue love and truth do not wear their courage as a badge to impress the market or boast their petty wares.