Raising of consciousness in horrific times

asifaIn all horrific situations like the current situation of the gang rape and murder of little Asifa, we need to reflect on what a person like Gautama the Buddha, Christ, Socrates or Gandhi, all famous figures of history, universally respected for the excellence of their character and model way of life would have done. Would he have e would behaved as our present-day leaders do and been an active participant or a passive onlooker of the suicidal race for more and more destructive nuclear engines run day and night before our eyes?

The answer is an emphatic ‘no’. Such a personality would never be a party to or an idle spectator of the horrid game. On the contrary, he would raise heaven and earth to rid mankind of this hideous nightmare and even stake his life to achieve this aim.

This may sound unrealistic but the fact is we all are indeed connected and to raise the consciousness of humanity, we have to not just protect and yes, punish the criminals but work on raising the conditions we find ourselves in.

What I am saying is not entirely new. For humanity to change, we need to focus and raise our own way of being so that slowly but steadily, there is true empathy towards all which is the only thing that can create a better world, again slowly but steadily.

It does not matter what the child’s religion, so called status or state was. What matters is that she was a child. This is what must call out to each of us. Again, not for politics or for playing blame games but for seeking to treat each child as one of us. In other words, let us seek to remove all labels from the people we come across and treat them as one of us.  The day this begins to happen, the world would indeed change and little Asifa’s death would not be in vain.


Playing our role in the drama of life

dramaoflifeWe often get along with a group of people who we find similar to us but often stay away from those who seem different. This is actually a very limited way of being. To expand our consciousness and way of being, we need to perceive others in a different way.

We could become the people and situations that can help you become clearly and strongly aware of our way of thinking. Usually we carefully protect ourselves from people we “just can’t stand”, we run the other way when life gives us a relationship that worries us.

This is actually a lesson that we need to learn and if we try and run away from it, we may see the lesson repeating in our lives again and again in a myriad ways. After all, life is indeed the greatest school of all and we need to work in this school diligently to learn and apply these lessons in all areas of life. In my case, I remember the time I used to run away from people who talked about ritualism, thinking is was at the lowest rung of spirituality. Now, this again is a judgement that no one has the right to make. When people get together be it for a ritual, for  a chant or for discussions of any kind, if they find it empowering, they are surely free to do so. Why should we judge the way anyone wishes to explore life?

Life is after all all always beautiful if we look at it with the perception of wishing to understand and not judge. It is only with seeking to understand that we shall see the different perceptions that everyone has. By understanding everyone’s perceptions, we shall indeed realise we all are players in the drama of the world. None of us is superior or inferior. We just are playing our role in the situation we are placed in. In that sense, we all are actors being directed by a supreme being who is pulling the threads. How we train our consciousness to play the role well, if of course entirely upto us.

Spiritual growth through elimination of negatives

There seems to be a lot of discussion on what we believe in nowadays, much more than earlier. Is this a sign of people moving towards spirituality or is it a sign of confusion?


The fact is, what one believes in is less important than the practice of humanity. Each faith itself has many variants.

In Hinduism, the Advaitata philosophy, elaborated by Shankaracharya, is a monoistic system of thought that expounds the unity of atma and paramatma. Here,the individual (atman) and the whole (brahman) are the same.

A slightly different view is that of the Visishtadvaita philosophy, propounded by Ramanujacharya. Here, the relationship of God to the Soul and the Universe is like the relationship of the soul to the body. Hence, although they are linked, there is a distinction, too. Final release of man (moksha) comes, by the Lord’s grace and annihilation of one’s karma by way of a communion with God.

The Dwaita philosophy of Sree Madhavacharya makes a clear distinction between God and his creation. Founded by Shri Madhavacharya, this system avers that souls are not created by God but depend on Him to evolve. In other words, God is the potter causing the clay to emerge, rather than being the source of the clay itself.

In Kashmir Shaivism and its branch, the Tantrik philosophy, Shiva is the “Universal Consciousness”, from which we all have descended. We pass through several tattvas or stages of spiritual evolution. As long as one resides in the lower tattvas , one is the victim of sadness and sorrow and is entangled in the wheel of repeated births and deaths, and it is through moving forward, that we closer to the a recognition of one’s oneness with ‘Parama Shiva’ , the absolute.

These schools may seem diverse at first, but all these different philosophies and indeed all faiths, are essentially in agreement, if only we look closer.

This is also true of all faiths.

This can, perhaps be best understood through a process of progressive negation that would also lead us towards a better understanding of the true nature of divinity, not all of which all be verbalized.

This process has its uses in almost all areas of research and understanding. All scientific research is driven by a progressive negation of possibilities and so is medical diagnosis.

A research into divinity too can best be served by such a process. At the very basic level, one can eliminate any action influenced or driven by ego, anger, greed, jealousy and all other human failings as separate from God.

Moving forward, we can see that rituals and even pilgrimages, while serving the purpose of bring us closer to divinity if practiced in the true spirit, are not God itself.

Immersed in this research, we would be able to gradually see divinity emerging.

Ultimately, whether we move closer to him as his creation or merge with him as a part of him is just a detail, it is the common goal of spiritual growth that is important.

Then of course, unity too will happen for unity, essentially is the sharing of a common goal, not the pursuit of it in an identical manner.

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