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Showing posts from September, 2009

Recognize Me

A flurry of activities are on. It is that time of the year. The time to celebrate the advent of the Mother. It has me wondering why she comes only this once. Why do we think about defeating evil only once a year? Is the Pujas a reminder to cleanse my mind once a year or is it a reminder to always keep myself clean? Why is the prep work of Maa's arrival about so much activity? Should it not be a time for me to contemplate rather than on getting busy with cultural, social and ritualistic activities? What is the significance of my activities?

Many questions and all the answers tell me that the activities are all about running away from the contemplation that will get my ego to take an inventory of itself and find it to be short of many qualities that it needs to become a true reflection of my spirit. As the scriptures say a Bhakta who loves his Ishta becomes one with the Ishta. He acquires all the qualities of his Ishta except His powers. A true bhakta remains one with his Ishta as lo…

Duty

An act or a course of action that is required of one by position, social custom, law, or religion - that is one dictionary definition of duty. Since at different times of my life I have lived in different places, worked with different people, under different circumstances my duties are ever changing and different from those of others whether in similar circumstances or not. As a mother of infants my duties were very different from my present duties as a mother of adults. I am still the same person and my boys are the same too but the circumstances of our lives have changed and so have my duties towards them. So with all phases and circumstances of my life.

I have duties towards myself that have changed over the years too. As a child education was my chief duty. To gain knowledge from parents, teachers, books, other people, and circumstances around me. During that same time I had a duty towards my parents, my family, my friends, my school, my temple and so on. It was only as an adult t…

Living Dreams

I have lived a blessed life. One that is full of experiences that, like with anyone else, have been instrumental in building different aspects of my personality. Starting with meeting death in the family very early on to meeting dignitaries; living in India, Kenya, Canada and the US; working in various capacities; making and breaking relationships through the years there have been many dreams broken and many more fulfilled.

I often wonder though if the dreams were mine or those of others. The answer is not very flattering. I have mostly lived thinking my life was about making 'others happy.' Being approved of, being liked, being thought well of was what drove this concept forward. In retrospect it was a lot more about the approval of others than about making them happy. It was important that I get this collective approval. A very elusive commodity and one that frustrated me as with each disapproval a part of me wilted. The disharmonious journey has made it impossible to reach…

Proceeding in Silence

Words - a verbal expression of thoughts. As babies we are encouraged to learn to talk. The more languages we know the prouder our parents are of us. Language is considered a determinant of IQ. The spoken word has great value - listen to ministers, politicians, teachers, women in general and even children. Everyone wants to be heard. The written word is another powerful expression of thoughts. So much can be learnt from the written word.

Our mind is running constantly. Often the mind follows a well traveled path each day. If I consciously watch my thoughts I find that there are very few new ideas that are generated by my mind. Most of my thoughts are about my family, my life, my environment with very little newness in the train of thoughts themselves.

Armed with this knowledge I can either re-train my mind to think new thoughts or to become silent. Whenever a thought is being repeated I do two things - one is to let it flow through my mind without resistance. There is a lot of truth to t…

Finding Inner Peace

The sounds of this world are beautiful. Be they ones that nature is creating or the ones that people are making. Sound is a form of Brahman and so is perfect in itself. It is upto the listener to feel that perfection. As I sit here writing I can see the people on the roof of the homes that are coming up right in my back yard. They are hammering and stapling, as they yell out at one another. As I listen to the music of "Om" playing inside my home these sounds all seem to be harmonizing with one another today and so I stop to think why I was unable to write as these same sounds were so jarring yesterday. Clearly it is not the sounds themselves - rather something in my listening that is making the difference.

I am more at peace today - the pain in my foot is better and I am more in my mind today - I was more in my foot yesterday. That is how simple finding inner peace is. Bring the mind into a moment of peace and find peace in the moment. A moment of pain is just as real as a mo…

Work

Work - 'Physical or mental effort or activity directed toward the production or accomplishment of something.' The definition itself includes the importance of results when any 'work' is undertaken. The ancient scriptures emphasize that one must not be attached to the results of work. Is this a contradiction? I used to believe it is. Not anymore.

Being result oriented is essential to fulfill my duties in this life. The challenge is in remaining unattached to the results. How does one define attachment then? One of the definitions is 'a connection that fastens things together.' I get tied to the result which then proceeds to tie me to other actions and other results. Wanting to succeed in something is necessary but to allow that result to distract me away from the action itself can lead to failure. Putting my full attention on the process moment by moment is what makes a job successful. Keeping the eye on the ball so to say. As a parent I raised my children to be…

My Personal God

For years now I have a Personal God I meditate on. Thakur - I love Him dearly. God does not end in Him though. He had a body - He was born and He died. He chose to come down amongst us to guide us to get to that higher plane. He showed us that it is possible for man to get There - to show us that there is a higher plane. Different paths get us there. These paths could be purely religious or we can choose to get there living as a householder. He showed us that we are all divine beings in human form. We have choices to make and these choices determine the pace at which we can get to that higher plane.

As a householder - a daughter, a sister, a wife, a mother I must fulfill my duties knowing that the day I leave this world behind all these relationships will be left behind too. The body or the mind is not responsible for building relationships it is the spirit that recognizes itself within the body of others and connects. So even if a distance is created between bodies and minds the conne…

The Voice

I became a life. You held my hand and led me on.
The world separated us. You watched as I moved on.

Along the way 'I' took over from you. I slipped, tripped and often fell flat.
You wanted to tend to my bruises. I wriggled away like a brat.

The wounds festered within. Today's pain proves the folly of my past.
From what I learnt, I should have stayed holding on to you steadfast.

My life is Your Gift to my desires expressed. Then I was inseparable from You.
Wanting to experience your physical realm, I broke away, waving adieu.

Did I know with this body came a mind and this overpowering ego?
Did I still come into this world with so much bravado?

Why did You not warn me about the pain that comes with the pleasure?
You did? But my false self was blinded by the so called worldly treasure?

No regrets, You say. For without the tumultuous experience of this unreality,
The ego would never have known its own unavoidable mortality.

What, dear Lord, will remain in the event of my inevitable demise?
N…

Today

The day was a strange one. There were definitely larger periods of silence in my mind and these brought a deeper peace than I have been able to find in the last few weeks. The mind is a strange place and it is interesting to watch it play games. Being more aware of the working of the mind as a reflection of the ego and separating it from it working as the reflection of the spirit is a challenge even today. The conscious awareness of this difference is often a limitation rather than an advantage.

Feeling hurt because of what others say, do or even I believe they think has been a habit developed over 4 decades now. I am unable to stop the hurt from showing up but once I have identified it I am able to overcome the hurt by reminding myself that it is my ego that is hurt and the ego is definitely not a true reflection of Me. What does it matter that someone else sees me as a bad person, or a good one? What really matters is how I am carrying this gift of life. My intent to become more self…