Little Drops Of The Ocean

Dev had a morning dream. In his dream, his grandpa visited his house and had breakfast with them. Soon after the breakfast, he bid good bye. Dev and his sister repeatedly pleaded him to stay back and tell them stories. But, grandpa seemed to be in a hurry. He told them, “Some other time, children, grandpa need to go”. And he left abruptly. Dev and his sister were crying when he was waving them good bye with a smile from his car. Later, he heard his father telling his mother, “He has moved on”. Grandpa has died. How can he die? How can he go so abruptly without more stories, hugs, kisses and cuddles? Dev cried and cried at the thought that he will never hear the loud laughter and enchanting stories of Grandpa. His sister, much smaller than him did not seem to be so affected and was immersed in waking up her dolls and preparing them for school.

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The disturbed Dev got up from his bed and walked downstairs. When the 13 year old Dev came to the breakfast table his father was busy reading the news paper. He gently uttered “good morning”. His father looked at him, hugged him with one hand, while holding the news paper with the other, and with a light kiss, whispered in his ears with overwhelming love “Good Morning. Shine Bright Dev. A beautiful day is waiting for you”. Papa is always optimistic and sunny in his disposition. When he saw that his eyes had a tear drop about to fall, he asked with curiosity. “Which of your super hero friends died last night? Did you have a bad night?” He said “No Papa. Grandpa came and left us in a hurry to die”. His father looked at Dev with curiosity. “Did grandpa die in your dream?” Dev nodded. Papa thought for a while, holding Dev in his arms. Then he said loudly – partially to his mother and partially to him and his sister “Get ready. We are going to see grandpa and grandma. We need to make sure he is OK”. Dev jumped with joy. After all, he is not dead. He was relieved that it was only a dream. Papa seemed to be in an exceptionally light and jovial mood. He was always full of enthusiasm and child-like. His mother always used to urge him to take life more seriously. He would laugh it off and always made the atmosphere light in the house with his laughter and enthusiasm. The greatest recipient of his fun loving nature was his sister, who adored him beyond comparisons.

Dev’s grandparents lived an hour and a half away from where they lived, in the suburbs of the city. On the way, they stopped at a vegan shop for a quick take away. Dev’s father was a staunch vegan and always insisted on vegan diet at home and outside. He always made it a point to explain to his children why we should not support or pay for the death of animals even indirectly. He also insisted on having no seed sprouts at home because “They are foetus of plants. Eating sprouts is equal to eating foetus”.

Mohanji vegan lifestyle

Since it was Saturday, the traffic on the road was much lesser than usual. They moved quite fast. When they pulled their car to the driveway, Grandpa was sitting in his usual chair at the portico with a news paper in hand. Dev was relieved to see him. He is alive and well! Nothing has changed. He got up when he saw the car of his son. Even though he was surprised at their unexpected arrival, he was delighted to see them at his doorstep as a morning surprise. He called his wife “Kamla, look here, we have loads of joy delivered with the morning newspaper for a change”. He laughed his usual loud laughter. It was time for hugs, kisses and cuddles. Dev’s father told him “Papa, Dev had a dream that you died. That is the reason for our quick trip to see you”. Grandpa looked at Dev. “Oh, Did I? Dev, Then who is hugging you now?”. Dev became shy as if his secret has been unceremoniously spilled by his father. Grandpa hugged him and said “I will surely die, but, not yet – some other day!” He laughed and winked at Dev. Dev had a tear in his eyes. When his mother and sister went with grandma into the house, and his father went inside to use the toilet, he hugged grandpa and said “I cannot leave you grandpa – I don’t want you to die”. Grandpa soothed his hair and said “Nobody leaves anybody my child. We have to leave this body and this role someday. We are always together. Remember, your grandpa will always live in your heart”. Grandpa sat down on his favourite easy chair and drew Dev close to him. A few years ago, Dev would be on grandpa’s lap. Now, he is a bit too big for that. He sat on the floor and rested his head on grandpa’s lap. Grandpa leaned forward and caressed his hair. They spoke for a while. While they were talking, Dev steadily drifted away and slipped off into a peaceful sleep.

Mohanji eternal soul..

He slept for a while, peaceful and dreamless with a lot of relief in his heart that his grandpa is well and he is in his arms. When he woke up, it was well past lunch time. He saw his father and grandfather seated at the first floor balcony and sharing jokes and laughing. After he had slept, someone had moved him to a bed.

He walked towards his Papa and Grandpa. Grandpa saw him and beckoned him to come near him. “Did you sleep well?” He nodded. “Did you dream that grandpa died again?”. He became shy and nodded “no”. He laughed aloud. Grandpa called grandma “Kamla, give this little big boy some delicious food” and winked at him. He walked towards the dining room, as his grandpa got back into the conversation with his father.

His father was very senior officer at the city administration board and perhaps the rare and only non-corrupt officer in the whole office. He always supported poor vendors, abandoned old and sick people, animals, and also the poor farmers.

When he returned back from lunch, grandpa told his papa, “now, leave us alone. I need to speak to this young man”. Papa smiled and left with a pat on Dev’s shoulder.

Grandpa said “Let us walk, Dev. Come with me. I shall show you the little buds and tiny leaves of the spring gardens. I shall show you how the mother birds feed their children and how the breeze distributes sunshine. Come with me.”

Dev and Grandpa started walking through the abundant paddy fields and the mild forests at the border of the village. Except a few joggers, the whole space was empty. Dev was still mildly stuck with his morning dream. He asked his grandpa “Grandpa, may I ask you a question?” He said “Sure, my child”. “Will you die like all the old people one day? Will my father and mother also die? Will I die when I am old like you? Why does everyone die? Why can’t we all just live with happiness together?” Grandpa stopped. He bent down and kissed the forehead of his grandson and said “You are waking up, my child. You have the right questions.”

Grandpa said “My boy, everything that is born must die.” They walked towards a small tree which had many nests. Grandpa showed Dev a nest which had three tiny chicks with their beaks open, waiting for their mother. Grandpa said “Look at those tiny chicks. See how fragile they are! This is their helpless times of dependency my boy. The chicks are helpless without their mother. The mother knows it and she cares for them. Soon, the mother will bring them food from somewhere.” As he was uttering these words, the mother bird came back with a beak full of food and distributed it amongst her waiting children. They gobbled up everything that they received and cried for more. The mother left to fetch more for herself and her children. Grandpa said “See, from sunrise to sunset, this is what the mother bird will do. She is fully depended on grace of the nature. She has not stored anything anywhere. Everyday is a different day for them. Everyday is totally unpredictable. When there is hot sun or heavy rains, she may not get any food at all. They accept that reality too, without complaints. Now see, the mother is wandering in search of food for her children. She may or may not get more food. You know, this is why I keep food for birds in our garden – to feed the unknown bird friends. This is the least we can do to this nice little mother, right Dev?” He smiled and patted Dev on his shoulder.
“Her children will slowly grow up and become strong. Their wings will grow larger. They will be ready to fly. Then they will leave their mother and fly away. A task well completed, their mother also will allow them to soar in the sky and find their own life in the vast horizons of this earth. One cycle is completed. The children will mature and do exactly what their mother did. Same way, life repeats itself. Every animal, every bird, every creature on earth including human beings are living this cycle.”

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Suddenly, he saw a snake crawling up the tree. Dev became terribly frightened. He hugged his grandpa. He shouted “Grandpa, help them. The snake will eat them”. Grandpa said “I shall save them, if their mother cannot. Let us see what happens.” Dev became impatient. In a short time, before the snake could reach the branch where the nest was, the mother and a few of her friends came shouting and started pecking and distracting the snake. Mother and her friends attacked together to defend the children. Soon, the snake gave up and withdrew. The birds went back to their work. Grandpa smiled “See, nature takes care of itself. It needs no human intervention or interference. If we leave them alone, they will survive on their own”.

Holding grandpa’s hand, Dev walked through the walking path of the village. few yards ahead, grandpa asked him to slow down and pointed at the direction of a forest clearing. A school of birds were shouting and flying around something. When they took a closer look, it was a bird that was dying. The birds flew around the dying bird as if they are observing a ritual or a kind of prayer. They waited and watched. Soon, the dying bird became still and lifeless. The birds came and sat around the dead bird for some time as if praying for the departed soul, and one by one they flew away. Grandpa said “Dev, you saw the children waiting to fly out a short while ago. Here you saw the soul waiting to fly out from the body of the bird alone. This is life and death, my boy. In between the definition called birth and death is the experience that we call life. The first was baby birds, where the soul was settling in and expressing itself, making them experience all aspects of life and the second was after all the experiences of life, the soul was leaving the vehicle that it used for that experience. This body is just a vehicle for experiencing life, my child. We are experiencing everything using this body. This is all. Whatever is born, will die. So, why do you worry, my child?”

Dev became confused. “But, grandpa, I do not want you to die”. Grandpa laughed “My boy, all of us will die, including you. All of us! Your grandpa had a grandpa too. He also had his grandpa. He had his as well. We had so many people in our family through centuries. They all have died. We will also die. When you will have your grandchild, you will also be like me, explaining to your grandchild what life is and what death is. Nothing in this world is ours, my child. Nothing in this world is permanently ours. We are fools, if we feel we own anything. We can own nothing. You saw how the bird died. It just died. Likewise, I will just die, leaving this body to earth. They will burn this body that you once called your grandpa. Once the body is burned, there will only be some memories of grandpa. Same with your grandma, papa, mama and everybody else. Everybody will leave at some point in time. Nobody will be here forever.”

Dev became silent. Grandpa sat down, hugged him and kissed his cheeks. “My child, I shall always live in your heart, as sweet memories. That way, I live much longer. Memories live longer than bodies. Keep me in your heart just the way I keep you in mine. We shall never part.”

Dev began to realise the truth in grandpa’s words. He said “Grandpa, will my love reach you even when you are gone?”

Grandpa said “Yes, my child. Think of me with love and I shall rejoice. Do not cry and make me sad. Do good things in life and let the living people tell good things about you. That will make me happy. That will make all our ancestors happy. They will be proud of having a great grandchild such as you in our family. Never hurt anyone. Love everyone. Do whatever good you can for everyone. Pardon those who harm you and hurt you. Do not harm, hurt or judge anybody. Give unconditionally, whatever you can share. Experience your life without hurting other beings. If you happened to hurt any being unknowingly, do not hesitate to apologize and correct your action. Nobody is perfect, everyone commits mistakes, and life has no rehearsals. Always be good and do good. This will make your lineage proud of you. Their blessings and mine will flow to you.”

 

Mohanji on the mystery of death....

Dev said “I promise you grandpa. I shall do everything possible to make this world a better place, for your sake”.

Grandpa kissed his forehead and said “Not for my sake, my boy. Let it be for the sake of nobody. Make it your outlook of life. If you count your good acts, it loses its divinity and grace. Do not count. Just do it always, naturally, without compulsion or even a thought. Through your positive action, inspire your nation. And do not be affected by abuse or criticism. Nothing should stop you from your honest expressions. Remember, all life is valuable. As you saw, the mother bird was so protective and loving towards her children. The adult birds took time to mourn the loss of their companion. Every living being has their families and feelings. Always respect it and leave them alone. Never interrupt, let alone murder any beings of earth.”

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“Do you know, Dev, those birds do not know that they are called birds and they are different from other beings. They just exist as they are born, as complete beings. We humans know that we are humans and they are birds. A dog has no reason or interest to know that he is called a dog. It is fully immersed, as those birds, in its life as a dog. All the beings of nature are immersed in their own life without disturbing one another. A tiger hunts only when it is hungry and a deer knows that. Human hunts for pleasure and waste lives indiscriminately. An animal eats only when it is hungry and fasts when it is sick. They heal themselves. The nature heals them. They all have intelligence. Humans are a different species. We are intelligent to cunning. We use our intelligence to reign over other beings. But, what is the use? We also die. Earth swallows our body too. What do we gain? We can own nothing from this earth, my boy. Hence, we must truly make human existence far superior than any other bodies of earth by displaying our supremacy in our ability to be kind and compassionate.”

Mohanji ....speciesm

On a side of the village road that they walked, there was a huge old fallen tree being sawed to pieces by a few people. Grandpa stopped walking. He held the hand of Dev and kept staring at the fallen tree, in a kind of mournful way. The wood workers paused for a moment to look at their spectators. Grandfather nodded his head to continue with their work. As they went back to their work, Dev and Grandpa started walking away from the sound of machines cutting trees into pieces. Grandpa said “The body of this old fallen tree is just like ours, Dev. I had stopped to feel if the tree was still alive inside. All young trees which had not completed its time of existence will still be alive when men cut them to pieces just like humans do with animals. When they suffer unnatural death, they suffer pain and agony. They die in pain. The trees that had their life on earth are old and are ready to move on, will leave their body for use as their ultimate sacrifice. They would have prepared themselves for the exit. Such trees are happy to exit. And they welcome other beings using their body for their purpose. We will be happy to move on if we lived a life of service and have no regrets. The tree which we saw had been a blessing to many generations. Many weary travelers as well as budding lovers has sought its shade. It has given fruits to many beings, fresh oxygen, shelter and shade to so many beings as well as seeds which eventually became similar trees. It took nothing from anybody. Nobody spent time to nurture it. It was giving and giving all the time. At the time of its death also, it was giving away its body for human use. A total selfless existence! We have lots to learn from it Dev. That tree is also a grandpa. We should treat big trees like old people, with love, gratitude and respect. They truly deserve it.

Grandpa continued “Do you know Dev, what it is to be human?” Dev looked at grandpa. Grandpa said “Being human means being compassion. Being human means inherent ability to express kindness and unconditional love. Human life is invaluable. It should never be wasted by indiscriminate selfish pleasures which disturbs and destroys nature and its beings. If we have superior ability on earth, we must use it to protect and nurture the children of mother earth. Life has its own way of survival. We should never interfere. Always live as an inspiration for compassion, my child. Life and death will come and go, you will be able to die peacefully after a life well lived without regrets.”

Mohanji what is it to be human

“Today, we are walking on this path, you and your grandpa. Soon, your father will become a grandpa and will walk the same road with your child. And someday, you will walk this earth with your grandchild. Life is a continuous flow, my child. All that came will go too. So, love everyone while you can, and be impartially kind. Never hurt even a fly. Live and let live. Live with a clear understanding that you cannot take anything from here except the memories of a life well lived with grace and love.”

Dev was not upset anymore. Something had changed in him. He felt complete. His grandpa had changed his mindset through his wise words. He had converted his insecurity to clear purpose of life. That was the biggest gift he ever received in his life. The purpose of Life! That is all it takes. That is all we need. Let it be filled with compassion, kindness and love without expectations and complaints.

Sun was setting. As they were walking towards the house of grandpa, they saw Dev’s father walking towards them, perhaps searching for them. Grandpa looked at his son and said “Finished the book entry of your mother’s complaints?” They both laughed. Grandpa told his son. “Dev is a sensitive boy. Take good care that he remains natural.” Papa nodded. He said “I did not want him to keep his fears and brood over it. That is why we made this quick trip.” Grandpa said “That was good. I could explain to Dev a bit about life and death as lessons from nature. He will get everything he needs from the nature. All he needs to do is to look and recognize the answers. Nature has all the answers.”

Grandpa addressed Papa “Madhav, as long as human compassion quotient is ignored, there will be no peace on earth. If kindness, selflessness and compassion is made the criteria of education and social status, if governments give importance to this aspect as the key aspect for everything, earth will become paradise. Otherwise, as we discussed in the morning, we are all against something each day, each moment. This is giving us worries, anxieties and suffering. We should be against nothing, let alone ourselves. Violence should never be tolerated; and should be controlled by strict laws.  So is corruption or any kind of selfishness. Deny social support for such people. Isolate them and make compassion compulsory. That is the only way life can be redeemed from its current frequency of mad competition, selfishness and bitterness.”

Mohanji on human compassion

Papa answered “Yes, Papa. This is what I am trying to establish within my jurisdiction. But, I am constantly facing obstacles. All my attempts get slapped by the selfish bureaucracy. The cancer called corruption has destroyed human sensitivity. Modern education has made men mediocre and selfish. Books are not teaching sensitivity, love and compassion. It is teaching competition and insecurity. It is not making a confident generation rooted in compassion and love. It is making an insecure generation, rooted in greed and selfishness. Looking at this makes me tired.”

“That is why you should not give up. You are young. You have a vision. Move on with it.”

“How do I handle the constant hurdles?”

Grandpa explained “Selfless service is our purpose. The purpose will handle it, my son. Intensify the purpose and conceive it in its utmost purity. Even if you fall down, or your hand gets dirty as you travel the path, if the purpose remains pure, it will take you to your destination.”

“Tall order, Papa”

“But inevitable and important, my son. Someone must lead by example, if not a few. The one who is against the tide may get crucified. But, setting example with own life has no substitution or comparison and I believe that dying for a good cause is much better than living the life of a mediocre conformist. Purpose is cleaning the system. Un-cluttering and weeding out the cancer eating away on our inherent compassion. This is all that matters.”

“On another subject, Grandpa continued; keep this house and space as it is, for the next generations. Do not sell it away after we are gone. Let them have something of the past to lean back on, when they are tired of chasing the world.” Papa agreed. Grandpa hugged Papa and said “I am proud of you my son. I am a happy father and grandfather. I can leave in peace with the firm appreciation that my children and grandchildren will only serve the world as light in the darkness and will not lead a selfish and self centred existence on earth like the majority.” Both had tears in their eyes.

Mohanji grace and love.

One month later.

Dev woke up and came down to the living room. He saw his parents getting ready to leave. Papa seemed serious and silent. He seemed busy and felt as if he was hiding something. There was no warning last night of any impending journey. He came close to his Papa and touched his hand. Madhav looked at Dev, held him close to his chest and whispered in his ears “Your grandpa has gone. He left early this morning. It was a heart attack. He died peacefully in his sleep. We have to go immediately”. Madhav’s eyes welled with salt water as he uttered these words. “Grandpa has gone!” Dev did not cry. He had witnessed birth, death and the story called life in the middle through the eyes and words of his grandpa.

Nothing STAYS here for EVER except the residue of our action on earth. And we own NOTHING.

Mohanji .......

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A Strange Revenge

Mala was 45. Mother of two. She grew up in India in a middle-class family. There was love and silence at home. Tolerance of individuality was an unwritten rule of her family. It helped each one to be their normal self without having to pretend ever. She had migrated with her husband to America when she was 30. Initially, it felt strange. Everything looked different. Food, people, culture, roads, and even the air felt different for her. She missed the confident familiarity of homeliness. She missed the unpredictability of existence at hometown which kept everyone always on their toes. She felt her new abode as a luxurious cage. golden cage
Eventually, she started adjusting to the environment. She created a shell of habits into which she withdrew whenever escapism was the only solution in daily life situations. Her husband Mahesh was an IT professional and was totally immersed in his compelling work. Her children, ever since they migrated to USA, seemed aloof, independent and became lesser and lesser dependent on her. She felt that they got matured overnight. Sometimes, she felt she did not know them at all. Over 15 years, there was not even an emotional companionship with her children or her husband. They spoke to her only when they needed something. She had little support or friendship outside as well.
Thus, she lived a cloistered life. Coming from a Communist – Intellectual background, she hardly had anything to do with Religion or God. She kept the popular news channel which incessantly streamed bad news non-stop as a sound accompaniment while she went around with her daily household chores. An occasional call to her aging parents reminded her where she began her journey from. They were contented people. They were happy with what they had. Otherwise, she was like a boat in the deep sea without any reason or destination.
Mahesh was literally wrecking his health in his work. He was working day and night. He was earning well though – but at the cost of any happiness or relaxation whatsoever. He would have gladly shed the rest of his body except his hands and head if given a choice. That was sufficient for him to earn his livelihood. The rest of his bodily functions were quite a burden and nuisance for him. Hence they steadily deteriorated. He was so preoccupied with his work that he hardly cared for Mala or their children. When she wanted to apply for a job a few years before, he objected saying that there will be none to look after the children. When she said that their children are minding their own business, he said it was all her imagination. So, she continued to lead an empty life of complete dependency and total vulnerability.
Stress was visible on Mahesh’s face and as each day passed, he became grumpy, serious and more often than not, angry. He snapped at every sound in the house. Whenever he came home, he wanted pin drop silence. He hated any questions, answers or demands from his family. He stopped attending calls from his parents or relatives. He refused to go home even when he was informed that his father had fallen down, broken his hip bone and had been hospitalized. He did not pay any attention when he was informed that his mother had had a heart attack.
Mohanji quote - Your primary dharma is your own familyOn both occasions, he sent some money and completed his obligation. He was too preoccupied with his work, that he cared nothing about others or even himself. Eventually both his parents died and the only thing that he did was send 2500 Dollars for their funeral. His sister’s family conducted their funeral. The money he sent was not received and returned to the sender. His family members stopped communicating with him. One day, he got an envelope from a lawyer in his home town which said that his parents have left their house and compound in his name and he should come and complete the paperwork for its possession. He put the envelope in front of Mala and said, “You handle it”.
They talked less. There was nothing to say. They did not even have much eye contact, let alone any quality conversation or time together.Angry man becoming lost
Soon enough, Mahesh increasingly became abusive. He started shouting at Mala and children for no reasons. Its intensity increased and once or twice their neighbors intervened. That made him angrier. He felt insulted. He accused that she was discussing about him with their neighbors. He started beating her. She became more and more helpless each day. Soon the children left for higher studies and moved to hostels near their universities. The verbal and physical abuse continued.
Mahesh was increasingly becoming paranoid about everything and this made Mala’s life totally miserable. She was totally dependent on him. She had no income of her own. Finally, after years of abuse and zero love situations, one day she decided that she cannot take it any further and to leave him. She had no idea where to go to. After an evening of verbal and physical abuse, when Mahesh finally became tired and slept, she packed her suitcase, took some money and left the house.
Her mind was filled with mixed emotions. It kept bubbling up. Anger and helplessness kept taking bizarre forms in varying intensities. Even though she never believed in revenge against anybody because of her stable upbringing, internally she wanted him to suffer at least a bit because of her absence, which she doubted will happen at all. Perhaps her absence would give him more freedom! At that point in time, it was overwhelming helplessness and a mild need for revenge interlocking itself in her mind. Yet, all the while, she hated to see anybody sad, let alone the father of her children. Her mother had told her “Being revengeful is a deplorable weakness and a personal illness. It will destroy oneself more than the other.” She just wanted Mahesh to feel what she feels, at least for a moment. She would have compromised everything for just a word of kindness, love, or appreciation. None came from him since years. And to top it all up, verbal and physical abuses too. First she thought she would go to the police and register a complaint.

contemplating life aThen she changed her mind thinking that she should not be punishing anyone. One will be punished by one’s own karma. Jesus said that the one who wields the sword will perish with it.

It was close to midnight. She was sitting alone at the bus stop thinking and contemplating, with a firm decision to leave for somewhere. It was cold. There was none at the bus stop except an old homeless man. He was covered in an old torn blanket and was puffing a cigarette. She was sitting and crying without a sound. There will not be any buses until morning. She knew it. Still, she thought it was better to stay in the cold bus stop steel chair than in the abusive fluffy cushions of her uncomfortable home. She had no idea where she was going to. She had no destination. She was sad and confused.
The old man looked at her and smiled. She did not respond. She was not interested. There were many serious problems to tackle even though she did not know how. She was not used to responding to strangers and she was in no mood for any small talk in the middle of the night – especially in her confused state. She was getting more upset when her thoughts brought Mahesh into the canvass of her mind and knew that he would be in deep sleep unaware of his wife leaving him. He probably wouldn’t care either, even if he knew that she had left him.
The old man looked at her and smiled again. He asked, “Young lady, why are you at the bus stop at this time? There won’t be any buses until morning.” She nodded, but did not speak. He knew that she has left home after a fight. It was obvious. He said, “Young lady, you have left home over a quarrel. Am I right?” She nodded again. But she was in no mood to explain. He said again “This place is for people like us, homeless, in the night. This is not a good place for a beautiful lady like you at this time. Are you not afraid?” She thought for a while, turned to him and said “I am homeless too” and continued without thinking “You are here to protect me.”
She surprised herself with this reply which appeared to flow out of her mouth quite unconsciously. Was this an instinctual response which had the fuel to create a potential adversary into a saviour?

You are here to protect me.
You are here to protect me.

He laughed. She looked at his laughter. Toothless, innocent, child-like laughter. She liked it. She wanted him to laugh more. Just to see laughter. Just as an entertainment to while away the night. It was as if she was inventing something precious – the laughter. He was probably giving her back her laughter.
The old man asked, “You are angry. You are upset. Why?” She said “Oh! It is a long story. Not worth the breath”. He persisted. “Tell lady, all of us have our stories for our predicament. What brings you to this bus stop on a cold winter night?” She said “Problems.” He laughed again. He laughed and laughed. “Problems! I am sure. It has to be problems. I am sure a young lady will not leave her homely comforts and warm bed in the middle of a winter night for better pleasures. It has to be problems”. He laughed again. Seeing his contagious laughter, unknowingly, she also broke into laughter. They both laughed together. For a second, she realized that she has not really laughed in abandon like this since her childhood! She laughed. The old man laughed. They both laughed.
The old man asked again. “What problem?” She briefed about her home situation and abusive husband. He said “Good you did not go to the police. It would have sealed yours and his fate. It would have officially established the state of being abusive and being abused. Good you did not tell the world either. It would have made the same effect. Others would have nurtured your agonies more than you. Too many cooks would have spoiled your personal broth. Good. Good that you are sitting here, giving an old man company in the cold winter night. I have no place to go. I have nobody to make me a warm cup of tea. I have no family. Nobody wants to call me a friend because I am penniless. You have everything, but, inside you have nothing. I have nothing, but inside, I have everything. I have no treasure to guard. I have no emotion to safeguard. I have nothing. I need nothing. I am free. So, in that way, I have everything.” He laughed and she laughed.
She started feeling warmer. She felt as if the winter is not as harsh as she thought. The winter inside her mind was harsher. This old man had warmth inside his heart because he had no expectations. It is expectation that spends the warmth of heart and creates deficiency in us. It was a deep realization. She started feeling better.
Mohanji quote - It is  expectation thatThe old man looked at her face and laughed again, as if she was wearing a clown’s mask! He said “I am sorry. When I look at you, the irony strikes me. An affluent woman sitting at a bus stop in a cold winter night, totally poor inside. And a penniless old man sitting in the same bus stop on the same night fully rich and contented! One is cold inside with overwhelming sorrows. One is warm inside with overwhelming nothingness!” She looked at him with eyes of warmth.
He continued. “Here is the rub lady. You know how to warm yourself up. Laugh. Laugh. Laugh. This is the rub. Counter all your sorrows and anger with laughter. Laugh. Let your husband be abusive, he is frustrated in the material world. Let him be. Nobody can change anybody. But, you can change yourself. Laugh. Through laughter, you could change your world and others world too. Your husband has forgotten laughter. The heaviness of greed is obscuring the child in him. Bring that child out with laughter. Laugh. This is your medicine. Go, young lady, this is not your place. This place is for unwanted beings like this toothless old man.” He laughed. Mohanji quote - When life weighs you down, our god given gift is laughterHis laughter was contagious and child like. She laughed with him. They looked into each others’ eyes and laughed. She felt that she found herself at last. She found her real self. She found the remedy for all her ailments. She felt that all her internal bindings and chains were totally broken. She laughed and laughed. Her whole being laughed. She felt as if she was born again. She felt the winter warmth. She felt that she has much to do in the world. The fire of optimism made warmth in her brain. Both of them looked at each other and laughed out loud, in the cold winter night. The old man stopped for a while and said “When life weighs you down, our God given gift is laughter”. “Laugh.” They laughed again. Tears of joy were streaming down each one’s cheeks. Still they laughed and laughed. Both of them got up. Hugged each other and laughed. Collective laughter sprayed warmth like electricity in their veins. They felt warm in their laughter.
She did not know when she slept. She was sleeping like a baby. She was sleeping blissful with her head on the old man’s lap. She slept unaware of anything, totally ego-less, without inhibitions.
Time ticked on. Soon she woke up and realized it was close to day break. People had started to come out of their shells. The morning always brought people out of their shells. Nights put them back into their shells. She realized that she was sleeping with her head on the lap of the old man who was sitting on the bench at the bus stop. She jumped up. She apologized profusely, for giving him inconvenience. He laughed. He said “Lady, you are a newborn. Newborn babies need to sleep well”. She laughed again. She felt good. She pushed her hand into her pocket, dug out some currency and put it in his hands. She whispered “Thank you teacher. This student is indebted”. He looked at the rolled up currency that he had kept in his hand. “My God, so much money! Lady, you have given me enough money for a decent burial!” He laughed and she laughed. She bid him good bye and left. While walking, she thought. Even the thought of death is a laughing matter for a man who is rich inside and the one who has lived his life selflessly. No amount of money can buy this richness.

365050.TIFShe came home as the sun broke and when she opened the door; her husband was standing at the kitchen with a steaming cup of coffee in his hand. His eyes were heavy. He looked like having a hangover. The moment he saw her, he did not ask where she has been or why she has come back home. He never cared. Instead, he started shouting at her. He abused her for not keeping the coffee mug handy, not being able to find coffee powder and so many other things. He looked at her. Suddenly she felt him very funny. She started laughing. He looked at her in bewilderment. She was seriously laughing. Shock of unexpected behavior was written large on his face. He tried to shout back at her. She felt that more funny. She laughed again. She laughed and laughed. Mahesh felt totally drained. His jaws dropped in wonder and confusion. He stopped shouting and stared at her as if he saw a ghost. He thought he did not know this woman. “Has this woman gone mad?” “Has she been drinking or taking drugs?” His surprise made her laugh again. First he made a vain attempt to ignore her. He could not hold it much. Seeing her uncontrollable laughter, a smile broke on his face. Initially he started laughing mildly and cautiously. In between, his mind that is not used to laughter tried to stop him. But, the contagious laughter took over. They both started laughing. They laughed and laughed. The cloud cleared and the sun finally shone bright.
The power of laughter changed Mahesh. He took leave, booked a flight the next day, went to his parents place and completed the formalities of their property. He gifted them over to his sister and family who looked after their parents in their old age. He performed the rituals connected to the death of his parents with an attitude of repentance. He gave a part of his wealth for providing food for the abandoned children and old people at a hermitage. He donated for a new shelter for abused children. He came back and visited his own children. Took his family out on a holiday! The whole family woke up to a new life. The whole family came together with the new learning. Learning to laugh!
Maya was indebted and thankful towards her teacher, the toothless old man of the bus stop. When she returned from India, she did visit the bus stop many times especially to tell him about the change that took over in her family. She wanted to thank the old man. But, she could never meet him, even though she even visited the bus stop in the middle of the night. On one night, she saw another man sitting at the same place where she had met the old man, puffing on a cigarette. She asked him if he knew the old man. He said that the old man had died a few weeks before and when they came to pick up his body, they found a bunch of rolled up currency with a small note attached to it, saying “For a decent burial”.

Thank You.

Mohanji quote - Just be in the path of Dharma

Beautiful Minds

A Dream to Ponder

Dream State is as relevant as the waking state in one’s total existence.

David woke up from a beautiful, profound dream. It was, in a way, both elevating and disturbing. He saw himself  as a boy, along with his grandfather who is no more, strolling down on the banks of a river. It was evening. Sun was turning red. Birds were flying home after a full day of outing. There was a gentle, cool breeze. The village was very familiar. He has been there before. Grandfather was holding David’s hand and he seemed a bit extra cautious about David’s security. As they walked through the walkway running parallel to the river, they witnessed and experienced many beautiful sights and sounds. What caught David’s attention and his waking memory was a prayer that came floating from one of the small huts, apparently from the throat of some children. It went somewhat like this…

“Different spaces, different times
Oh Lord, thou carried me like a faithful boatman.
Safe and Secure, Safe and Secure…
Through the time and seasons alike

“Different faces, different tunes
Oh Lord, thou protected me like a mother bird, her children.
Safe and Secure, Safe and Secure
Through summer, winter, spring and rain.”

Tradition Nurtures Generations, only if we choose to Listen to it…

A feeling of powerful protection enveloped David. It gave a strong feeling of re-assurance. Grandfather’s hands and the lovely prayer accompanied and re-inforced his feeling of well-being. David called his grand father ‘BABA’. He was deeply connected with his grandfather, to an extent that they knew every subtle vibrations of each other, let alone profound emotions. As they walked on, he asked his beloved grandfather:

“Baba, where are we going?”

Baba smiled and said: “I want to introduce you to my friends. We went to school together, we played in the same team, and grew up together, just like you, Mark and Alf.”

David smiled, “Baba, I cannot imagine you as a young man, let alone a boy”. 🙂

Baba laughed aloud. “I was not born old. 🙂 I was not this old always”. 🙂

Baba was a tall man with slightly drooping shoulders, one side of his shoulder bent slightly to the front and to one side. He was of extraordinary character. He was always in command of every situation. He was never seen emotional. Always jovial, calm and collected.  He always used his intellect and quite knew what he was doing. David has never seen him idle, even at his old age.

Their journey ended at a graveyard in front of a church near the river. David was surprised.

“Where are your friends? Will they come here? Are we meeting them here?” This was indeed an uncommon place for any friendly get-together.

Baba said “No. They are already here”.

Baba took David to a stone which read “William Smith”. Baba said “Will has been my classmate and my best friend. He was the best man at my wedding too. An unshakable strong man, a brave heart. He had worked hard in foreign lands, made his money and returned home after his retirement. We met after a long time. He was a fire-brand in his youth, daring and charming. When he came back after all those years, he looked tired and withdrawn, a bit too distracted. He seemed more interested in isolation and hid himself from the society, as much as he could. I tried to bring him back to some old personal memories to revive his old vigor. But he showed no interest at all. He had three children. They all fought with him at his old age over property and money. They even abused him and never agreed with what ever he told or asked them, or wanted them to do. Finally, he died broken hearted, alone. Will was once a strong man, everybody’s hero. I could not see him so heart-broken and deserted. This is what old age does for some. David, if we are not careful enough to nurture relationships while we can, later on, life could bring isolation and alienation. That can even be called “living in hell”, with no love, warmth and togetherness, exactly the things that one craves for, when one is weak and unprotected.

David said: “Baba, are all your friends dead?”

(The graveyards of farm animals are human stomachs!) Human Graveyard. All of them have had their lives and all of them have had their deaths. Caring for the Living is more important than caring for the dead. Often, we ignore the living and care for our dead. We do things upside down. 🙂 We should certainly respect the dead, but not at the cost of the living..

Baba smiled and said “Not all. Some are still alive. But, they are old, you see. Most cannot move on their own. They need help. They are heavily dependent on others. Old age often makes people invalid and handicapped.”

David felt quite relieved that his grandfather can move on his own and is relatively healthy to that standard. Yet, David experienced a strange kind of uneasiness creeping up his throat. He felt that he would get depressed by meeting all these old friends of his grandfather in the graveyard. Yet, he knew that Baba had a purpose, even though it was not quite entertaining for David. He said: “Baba, let us go home. I am not feeling good.”

Baba said: “David, two more introductions and we shall go home.” Baba tried to cheer David up who was slowly settling into his gloom.

The next tomb stone read “Stephen Summer”. “He has been our pilot man.” Baba spoke as if it was a joke. David was too withdrawn by then, to enjoy any jokes. The whole situation made him extremely uneasy.

“Even when we were young, he wanted to become a pilot and fly aircrafts. He got into the army and moved into the air command segment and became a pilot. He has participated in many wars and bombed many people and places. And that was his deepest regret in his later years. Fighting a nagging cancer in his abdomen, though looked after well by his devoted wife Lisa, whenever we met for a coffee, he would say “How many people have I killed in my young days!!!. Women, Children, Men, Old and Young. I do not know their faces, thank God. But, they haunt me every night. Faceless bodies come forth and ask me “What did we do to you, to destroy our lives? We were just beginning to live, taste the sweet and sour buds of life, you wrenched us out of our beds. How will you pay us back, how will you give us back our lives?”  Regrets were eating into his flesh. Steve repented day and night. He even welcomed death as a solace to his aching conscience. He refused to be treated and used the pain that his illness profusely gave as a kind of purgatorial from his sins. He thought death would finally redeem him. Helplessness tormented him. Finally, he gave up and here he stays”, Baba pointed out at the grave stone.

The last one was that of Eric. He was an actor. He was after fame and recognition. He became addicted to intoxicants and died quite young. He could not ever find a stable relationships and even though he had many children from different women, there were none to take care of him, or look after him at his death bed. He died alone, in a hospital, with a longing to see his children and experience their love, which he never nurtured when they were young. I tried my best to convince some of them to go and meet their father who was in his death bed. None showed any interest and gave me lame excuses. He never cared for his children when he was young. The children never cared for him when he was old, sick and helpless. Life is like a mirror. You reap what you sow.”

Who has seen the other end of life? A predator could become prey at the flip of a coin..

“As for me, I have been quite mediocre, compared to them all, and I did not go anywhere from this place. They all saw the world outside this village. I did not see much beyond this village. I saw only my inner world. My world has been within me. The whole world was within me. In the end, they could not hold on to their large world, but I could. I am not boasting, but just proving a point. I learned to make buildings and do some farming which made my living. More than grains, I sowed love and I nurtured it. I distributed it in this village itself, as best as I could. Your grandmother was a great soul. She never allowed any visitor to leave our house with an empty stomach. More than the food, our genuine care satisfied our visitors. We have always been quite self-sufficient, yet our neighbors always shared their happiness with us, just like we did. They cared for us, and considered us worthy of their time and space. There is no substitute for HARD WORK. There is no substitute for LOVE.”

“I have been busy and my life has been quite rich and meaningful. As a hobby, I learned astrology. I never practiced astrology for money. I just guided a few who came to me to shed some light on some of their personal confusions. Astrology is ability to read into one’s destiny using the movement pattern of planets and stars. If destiny was a variable, astrology would fail. Fortunately, it is not. Destiny is constant, pre-determined. The science of astrology is based on a definite road map called destiny, a pre-planned journey that one takes in one life time. It is a science. It is sheer mathematics. The element of free will and the element of grace can always alter that to some extent.

Thus, I lived a simple life, away from the rush of the towns and lived long enough to see my wandering friends dead and buried! How many dreams and aspirations we chewed on during our youth! How many dreams we weaved. Some were realized, and some left unfulfilled. I have no regrets. It is time for me to go too. I may not survive this summer. My time is near. Death does not frighten me, nor am I worried about my life after death.”

“I do not know any God. I have not seen God. No God has come to me and guided me, let alone come to criticize me, beat me, or judge me. I believe that for the hungry, God is food and for the cold, God is warmth. In the summer, God comes as a cool breeze and in the spring, God appears as blossoms. I believe there is no God apart from its various forms. I believe God expresses itself through us too, as kindness, compassion and Love, while Devil, if there is one, expresses itself as jealousy, hatred, anger, and revenge. I do not know any grand philosophy nor do I want to know. What is the use of knowing it, if I cannot use it? I do not want anything that I cannot use or practice.”

David then saw his grandfather, grandmother, his parents and all his cousins in an outdoor party near a beautiful river. All were singing and dancing and there was immense love and sense of belonging-ness in the air. David sang many songs and had lots of fun.

It lost its life for us to celebrate an occasion!!!
Be Aware of What you eat. Eat with complete Awareness

There was a lot of food and drinks on the table, and when he touched a piece of bar-be-cued meat of a suckling pig-ling, (a specialty at important gatherings) he heard the voice of his grandfather again, even though he could not see him. “Remember David, that baby pig did not die happy, for you. It was forcefully killed. It was murdered for your enjoyment. Snatched from its mother’s breast while it was drinking its mother’s milk. Its mother is still alive and missing her child. Some of its brothers and sisters are still alive. Eat with clear understanding. Eat with awareness.” David dropped the meat. He could not consume any meat anymore.

He woke up with clear memory of the entire dream and he knew that his dear departed grandfather has just conveyed a very important and life-changing message to him. He had just used the medium of a dream to convey it, because he had already left this world and there was no way he could talk to David.

This was a crucial point in David’s life as he was getting more and more involved in a particular path of education that he chose and he was getting too introverted, indifferent and insensitive towards the outside world because of it. Even though his parents never interfered, he had taken a lot of responsibilities onto himself and was already suffering the pressures, pains and weight of it. Anxiety over possibility of failures or defeats were also affecting his self-esteem. David got a clear remedy to his dilemma from his Grand Father’s message. He decided “LIFE HAS GOT TO BE SIMPLE! Why do we make it complicated? We must definitely work hard. But, we must love our work. Love for work will remove all pressures and pains. If we love what we do, old age cannot make dents in our life.” The life of Baba’s three close friends clearly made David understand the futility of mad pursuits. Everything eventually ends up in the grave. All emotions, ego, ambitions end up at the same place. A life filled with love and laughter is worth more than the millions in the bank. He decided that he should appreciate what has been given to him, rather than be always dissatisfied, focusing on what he could not achieve as yet. He stopped comparing himself with others and judging or criticizing himself. He understood that he has always been in pursuit of something or the other that he did not have, ignoring everything that he already had. He realized that failing to enjoy the available materials or relationships always lead one to permanent disillusionment and eventual depression. He also realized that constant resistance to everything also consumes a lot of energy and it makes one tired. David decided to shift his life in 180 degrees. Love is the remedy. That is all he needed to learn and remember. Love is all one needs. He woke up to a completely new life.

P.S. Sometimes, protecting angels will take you to the astral plane and deliver such experiences. Its memory stays, if it is relevant to your terrestrial life. In order to keep the memories, directions and guidelines would be well engraved in the conscious memory, if that information was expected to be used in one’s life. It would be presented as a dream, even though it is an astral experience, a total communion. This is just for your understanding. Please understand that there are millions of permutations and combinations possible in our existence. So, do not think in terms of any specific patterns. Everything is individualistic and unique. Each moment is unique and each method is unique. One’s food could be another’s poison. So, do not judge experiences, but value them. Everything has relevance in some way, to some one.

It is a relative existence. Only Love is Real…

In Search of The Precious – 3

In Search of LIFE – 2

True Dilemma of a Goddess

Once upon a time, in the southern Indian state of Kerala, lived an avadhoota. As with all avadhootas, he was also dis interested in his bodily well-being and it gave him the status of a “mad man” in a society which believes in accumulation of wealth, corresponding social status and physical well-being. To mock the superficial society, and to teach them the futility of the repeated terrestrial existence, every day, this avadhoota used to push a big round stone up the hill and with great effort, before sunset, he would bring the stone to the top of the hill. Then, he would push the stone downhill and laugh at it rolling down. This action gave him the title “MAD”. While people were in a hurry to categorize him as a “Mad Man”, they did not understand the method in his “madness”. He was teaching the ignorant society a precious lesson about life. The stone represented human life. People work hard from birth till death to accumulate wealth and “secure” their life; and death takes it all away. At death, everyone leaves empty handed. All that they accumulate from birth till death, including wealth, status, rewards, qualification, emotions and relationships, gets annihilated and left behind. Nobody carries anything when they depart. The stone was a symbolic representation of life itself. The grave effort of building it up is lost in a second, when death happens. Everything gets undone, with physical death. The avadhoota spent his whole life doing the same thing and giving the same message to people. Unfortunately, as always, people only saw the obvious – the action, and not the precious message within.

The avadhoota had no house of his own and he lived in the village burial ground. Dogs and foxes appeared every night to devour unburnt flesh from dead bodies. They never bothered him. Like aghoris, he cooked his meal in the funeral fire or with the fire from the funeral (in India, dead bodies are customarily burnt, not buried). And after eating, he would sleep on the burial ground. He also did not have any work that earned him his daily bread, and yet, by “working hard” everyday by pushing the stone up the neighboring hill and then dropping it, he demonstrated the need to be active, for a larger purpose. He found his food through begging. If nobody gave him anything, without complaints, he would sleep with an empty stomach. Having food or lack of it never bothered him. A true renunciate indeed!!!

Kali Dances with the Souls of the Burial Ground…

The story goes like this. Goddess Kali and her entourage (which consists of fearsome Demons, Ghosts and Vampires) used to visit this burial ground on specific nights, such as Fridays or Tuesdays, to dance in the funeral fire along with the souls of the departed. This dance also signifies victory of death over life, i.e. the temporariness of human existence. So, when Kali and her dancing troop came to the burial ground, they saw a “human” sleeping there. Goddess cannot dance in front of humans. Human beings are of gross and  inferior existence, according to them. And, till then, no human being has survived seeing such fearsome spirits and Kali. People who have seen them have died out of fear. So, they decided to frighten the sleeping avadhoota. They made all sorts of sounds to wake him up. He did not even open his eyes. He was not enjoying the normal sleep, he was in samadhi state. Finally, he opened his eyes and got up. He sat there, watching the efforts of Kali and her team of ghosts, trying to put fear into him and drive him away. He watched their show like a movie and sometimes clapped his hands. Kali and her team got tired of this. Finally, Kali came to him and said. “Oh Man, I am pleased with you. No ordinary human can see us, witness our dance, and still be sane. You are no ordinary human. I am pleased with you. I want to give you a boon.” The avadhoota smiled and said “Thank You for your kindness. You and your team really entertained me. I am really happy. I do not need another boon. I am fine. If you are finished with your dance, please leave the place and let me sleep a bit more, before the day break. I have heavy work to do when the sun rises.” (Pushing the stone uphill and watching it roll down at sunset). But the mighty Kali insisted: “I have decided to give you this boon. You should tell me what you wish for.” After a lot of persuasion, he asked Kali: ” When will I die?” Kali gave him the exact date, place and time of his death. He said: “I want to live one more year.” Kali explained: “When a human takes birth, his longevity of life is pre-determined. He comes with the full karmic agenda. Nobody can tamper with it, including me. So, I cannot give you this boon.” He laughed, then thought for a while and said “OK. Then subtract a year from my life – give me one year less.” Kali said “I cannot tamper with your karmic life. Nobody can. Your destiny is well defined. Everything happens accordingly. The time, space, and the faculties are chosen and the experience is inevitable. You cannot cut it short and leave early. You have to move with time and complete everything that you came here for, before you exit.” The Avadhoota laughed aloud and teased Kali: “This means you do not have much power as you pretend to have. I do not need anything else. You may go.” Kali explained “Even the God Almighty does not interfere with the karmic agenda, created by existence. Existence creates karma, using the faculties. Unit souls that represent existence, aid it. So, units creates karma individually and collectively as they come together. The unit experiences singularly and collectively. Karma gets lead by itself. Bodies and minds happen based on Karma. The underlying factor is karma. Nobody interferes with Karma. It is the Dharma of Gods to allow Karma to happen…. I cannot leave without giving you a boon because I have offered you one. I am Goddess Kali and I have to keep my word.” Again the Avadhoota teased Kali: “Can’t you give me just one day of life more?” She said “NO”. “One day less”. Again she said “NO”. He laughed at her helplessness. The avadhoota humbled the Goddess. Finally,out of sympathy and not out of requirement, he pointed to his swollen left leg. He was suffering from a disease called “Elephantiasis”. His left leg was swollen and heavy. He told Kali “Did you see my left leg, swollen and heavy?” She said “Yes”. “OK, Shift it to my right leg and relieve my left leg. It has taken pain for long. Now, let the other share it.” Kali shifted his disease to his right leg, blessed him and disappeared with her entourage.

Remember, he did not ask Kali to remove his disease. He was not resisting anything that life gave him. He was just ridiculing the pomposity and resistance attached to our everyday existence. We become proud and egoistic with the feeling that we are doing everything and it is us, who move the world. The world is moving. Our powers are quite limited. Moreover, the avadhoota himself had the power to change anything, including his disease, if he wanted to. But, a real Siddha will never use any of His siddhis for self satisfaction or selfish needs. He uses it only for dire necessities and sometimes as an eye opener, to install or re-install faith in people. The detached life of an avadhoota is a true message to man-kind that is running after fleeting glories and paltry pleasures.

Burial Ground is a great place of complete justice. The rich and poor, the prince and pauper, all are alike in the burial ground. The eventual residue of the very rich and very poor is the same – a handful of ash!!! We apply ash on our forehead, as a reminder to others that eventually, we will become nothing but ASH.  This is meant to annihilate our ego, by reminding us of the eternal truth of perishability and unity.

Fire does not discriminate. It burns everything alike and still does not get contaminated. It stays clean. Water purifies, but gets contaminated. Air purifies and takes on the negativity. Earth also purifies, but gets contaminated. Fire purifies, burns everything into ashes, but, stays pure always.

Greed is Blinding

Who Will Share My Karma???

Karan was born poor. His parents were poor. They lived in a small town in the suburbs of the city. They could not provide him good education or even food and clothes. As soon as he completed his 12th class, his paternal uncle took him to the city. He stayed with his benevolent uncle, found a job and started earning even while he was a teenager. He was good at work and was quite loyal. He even skipped his lunch and worked to complete his tasks. His employer liked him, a silent performer, and thus he grew in his career, quite rapidly. A few years later, when he became well established in his work and was earning a good salary, his parents found him a native girl, and got him married. He was very happy with his marriage. His wife was a quiet and loving woman, who took care of his household chores without any complaints. They were a good match. Everyone loved them.

Years went by and they were blessed with three children, two boys and a girl. Meanwhile, he got an opportunity to go abroad and get into a job, which paid him many times more salary than his current job. He and his family settled down and again, he grew in his career, as well financially, rapidly. He became very rich. Meanwhile his father expired. He looked after his mother well. He invested in land, buildings and owned many establishments along with his best friends as partners and became one of the richest men in his home town. A smooth life of glory. He was happy and people were happy with him.

When he was 55 years old, he decided to return back and enjoy the fruits of his toil. He came back and started living in his home town. He had left his home town many years ago and he felt a bit alienated. But, money attracted people to him. He made many friends. Slowly, sycophants started spoiling his mind. He started getting into arguments with his partners and slowly took over most of the companies to himself. He used various methods to achieve this end. He became a completely different man.

The peer pressures of his home town made him a ruthless businessman. He took over all the distributed shares, by force, through threats or, in some occasions,  by paying off. Thus, he strengthened his position in the town. He stood for the local elections and also gained political clout. He became invincible. Along with politics, he entered into many corruption practices, bribery and “handling” of people who opposed them. Thus, a once clean employee became a totally corrupt  and dictatorial employer. People feared him, more than respected him. It was a path of “no return”. He kept walking unconsciously and in a way, helplessly.

One day, while he was leaving his office, late at night, he was beaten up by some people. He did have his driver and body guards. It was like an ambush, just outside his office, which was totally unexpected. They stabbed him in his stomach, broke his collar bone and ran away. He was immediately hospitalized. He had lost a lot of blood and was in intensive care for almost a week. Slowly he recovered and his state frightened and shocked his family and friends. One thing was clear – some people were affected by him so much that they want him dead. There was a big threat to his life.

When he was out of the hospital, when he could travel on his own, his brother-in-law took him to an old saint. His aim was to calm his agitated and shaken up mind. The saint looked at him and said: “You came empty handed. You will leave empty handed. What have you conquered?” Karan said: “I was a poor man. I became rich with my own hard work. Everything is hard-earned. I had to secure what I earned for my family and children.” The saint smiled. “Did the place, time and environment happen to you, or you created it?” Karan said “It happened to me. I used it.” Saint replied: “Good. Good understanding. What about your corresponding actions, which harmed many?” Karan said“I had to do whatever I did. The message had to be delivered loud and clear.” Saint: “What about the affected?” Karan was silent. There was no answer. The saint said: “They also decided to give their message loud and clear. That is what you are suffering from now.” The saint then said: “One more question. You are responsible for all your actions, even if the guidance was from others. Right?” Karan said “Yes”. Saint: “Just tell me, who will share your fruits of action, you may call it SINS?” Karan was shaken again. “Do you think your wife or children will share any of your sins? If you are doing everything for them, they should also share your sins, right? Will they?” Karan started crying. The saint consoled him: “Remember my son, Mind means dissatisfaction. Wisdom gives satisfaction. Depend on your wisdom. Mind means Greed. It always remains dissatisfied. It wants more. It wants more money, more power, more positions, status, food, wine, women, control….so on and so forth. If you get carried away, you will hurt others and you will harm yourself. Nobody can suffer your fruits of action on your behalf, except in a larger collective way. So, please share with others and sharing will bring you happiness. Hoarding will give you more anxiety. Go home in deep peace.” The Saint blessed him.

He came home and contemplated on the words of the Saint. He realized that nobody can share his burden and nobody will. He has to run his own life. He was born alone and will die alone. All that he accumulated cannot be taken with him. He cried for a long time. He distributed a lot of his wealth to poor people of his town. He started free schools for the education of poor children. Irrespective of caste and creed, he provided meals to anyone who came to his estate, any time of the day. He relieved himself from politics, distributed his business to his children, and plunged himself into charity.

Life gives rude shocks to make us understand certain inevitable truths. Those who understand will evolve. Those who resist, will perish further. This is the nature of life.

Believe it or Not…We Write Our Own Destiny!!!…

Love YOU Always

M

In Search of the Precious – 1

The NEST – A True Story

God Created Space. Man Created The Nest

Brian belonged to a Middle Class family. This also means that he inherited much more “DO’s” and “DON’T’s” from his family and the society than his rich and poor friends. Richness, or higher purchasing power, and poverty, or no purchasing power, have one thing in common –  FREEDOM. The middle class does not have this luxury, so they cover themselves with a cloth of convenience called morality. When walls of the society prevent their mobility, they hide behind the veil of morality. This is the truth of the middle class life.

Brian was a rather shy and introverted boy, who avoided all kinds of confrontations, but strongly objected to various forms of injustice that he encountered each day, in his daily life. He was also sensitive and carried many complexes up his sleeve. This often prevented him from shining bright or utilizing each opportunity to excel in his class.

Brian, with his parents and younger sister, lived in the suburbs of Mumbai. After his 12th class, he started travelling to the city central for further education. There he met Miranda, an intelligent girl with a no-nonsense attitude. She seemed to know what she wanted and how to get it. Initially, it was admiration that Brian felt, which later became obsession. Miranda’s absence made him depressed and low. Even though he was not sure if she ever noticed him or noticed him enough, he was happy to be around her. He was also impressed by the way she could see through her wooers and put them in their place. High level of maturity for a girl in her teens!!! She had the poise and style and, in a way, most boys were afraid of her. They left her alone, to a great extent. This increased Brian’s admiration towards her. He greatly admired elegance.

Elections brought them together. Elections gave them the proximity and time to develop an affair. Without their knowledge, they fell in love. Even though it happened by itself, for Brian, it was a dream come true. They became closer and closer. They eventually became inseparable.

Mind is the seat of emotions. Mind started the process of owning each other, more so with Brian. Even if he sees Miranda having a coffee with her male friends, let alone crack a joke and laugh aloud, he started becoming jealous. Slowly, difference in opinions started and it matured into heated arguments. There was no spate for jealousy. Mind gave various dimensions to Brian’s imagination. He had no idea how he could protect Miranda from other boys. Even though it was quite a tedious and time-consuming matter to take such detours, Brian picked up Miranda everyday from her house and dropped her back after the classes. Miranda was not too happy about Brian’s over-possessiveness. But, since she appreciated his honesty, sincerity and good heart, she swallowed his sundry objections without much resistance.

Jealousy Brings out the Devil in Men

Miranda was quite pretty and intelligent. She was the topper of her class. She always shone bright in all competitions and was also kind and considerate to others. Attitude of charity was inherent in her. She used to help the poor and needy when ever she could, and that too spontaneously, without waiting for others’ support. She would easily pick up the wounded dog in the street and take it home and nurse it back to health. She would feed birds everyday. She always carried some food with her for poor old lying neglected in the busy streets of Mumbai. Brian also loved this aspect of Miranda and he used to volunteer his support all the time. This was one aspect which kept Brian close to Miranda.

Greed has no respite. TRUE Happiness is in GIVING…

Time flew, classes ended, both Brian and Miranda got employed in good institutions and they decided to get married. It was a small and tidy function. Their relatives and a few friends participated. After marriage, they moved from their parents’ house into a rented apartment, which they later bought on hire purchase. A new life began. Miranda beautified their home within their resources and called it  “The NEST”.  Their marriage produced three children, within six years. After a boy and a girl, the youngest was Anna. A pretty and cute child. Miranda managed her family life and career efficiently. Brian was often amazed at her energy, as he used to be so tired by the time he returned back from his office. Miranda would still do cooking, taking care of children and Brian, and even prepare food for the next day, without any complaints. She hardly scolded her children or expressed discontentment about anything. Even when the children fell ill, she took them to hospital, brought them medicines, administered the medicines on time, yet, managed her office work and domestic chores. There was a part-time, old housemaid to help her. Even the finance management was her responsibility. Brian often felt like a demanding tourist in his own house, as his responsibility was quite limited to his office and his own affairs. He willingly allowed Miranda to run the house, i.e. the lethargic  nature of Brian automatically shifted all the regular responsibilities of the family to Miranda. Life continued thus.

Each Moment is a Gift to be Cherished. Love is the true energy of life.

Despite having limited responsibilities, Brian always complained, shouted and abused Miranda and their children. He continued to be jealous and suspicious about Miranda and her interaction with her colleagues and clients. He even spied on her when his suspicion got the better of him. Fortunately, Miranda was ignorant about the growing intensity of his suspicion and the pace with which this cancer of jealousy was spreading in Brian.

Brian was having sleepless nights. He also started resorting to alcohol to cool his suspicious mind. He wandered into unholy company of gamblers and alcoholics. Miranda was helpless. Her advice always ended up in bitter fights and, for the sake of children, she kept quiet. Brian’s lifestyle started affecting his work and he was warned for negligence, many times, until one day he finally got sacked. He even lost initiative to hunt for another job. He started sitting at home and it affected his morale. Miranda tried her best and got him another job. The new company of Brian’s was a client of Miranda’s company and she knew the boss very well. Brian swallowed his pride and joined the company, more because of his wounded ego for being a parasite of his own wife. But, he also suspected a relationship between his wife and his new boss. This started eating on his mind. He picked up silly fights with Miranda, which the matured Miranda ignored. She had many other important things to remember and perform concerning her family and her children. Children grew up well and excelled in their education. This gave inspiration and hope to Miranda, she was proud of them.

Jealousy is a serious cancer which destroys oneself and others too…

Arguments lead to severe conflicts, and even reached a point of divorce. They stopped speaking to each other and started communicating through the children. Children also became gloomy and silent. The Nest became a deserted ghost house when both Brian and Miranda were at home together. This continued until one day Anna fell sick and had to be admitted in the hospital. By the time the doctors diagnosed blood cancer, it was too late to save the child. Anna died in the hospital. Miranda loved Anna a lot and Brian also loved her in his own way. Her loss brought them together, at least temporarily. They forgot their differences and shared their grief. After a few months, Brian drifted back to his old ways. The NEST, once again, became a war zone.

One evening, due to heavy rains in Mumbai, Miranda called Brian to pick her up from her office, which was close to hers. He picked her up and while driving home, they had an argument over some silly reason. While they were shouting at each other, through the mist obscured window, Brian failed to see a parked trailer without any lights and rammed his car into it. Brian survived the accident, with broken bones while Miranda left her body, on the spot, at the age of 42 years and three months.

Brian spent three months in the hospital while the children were looked after by his mother (his father had passed away a few years before). Without Miranda, life became impossible for Brian. He had no clue how to move on. He started realizing the value and worth that Miranda added to his life. When he returned back home from hospital, he realized that he should quickly get back to work or else he won’t be able to run his family. It was taxing for him to manage everything with his salary. Also, he did not know what were the priorities at home and in his own life. He even thought that his children were too demanding. He started drinking alcohol again. His mother could not stand his indifference and took the children to her house. He became alone in his own house.

Every moment reminded him of Miranda. He started feeling that her ghost is haunting him. He developed many fears including the fear of darkness and death. He started feeling that he will go mad. Regret stabbed him each moment. All these years that they lived together, he had done nothing for Miranda. He had never expressed love, kindness or compassion towards her. He never bought for her even one piece of jewelery or a good dress, except in the initial days of togetherness. He was only expecting more and more from her and criticizing her for everything. He never even hugged her, kissed or made love to her since their last child was born. He never appreciated her. He was only possessive and jealous about her. He could not even buy any gifts or toys for his children, apart from their regular books and necessities.

When loneliness and guilt became overbearing, he left “The Nest” and went to a monastery.  He fell at the feet of the chief saint of the monastery and requested  for peace and solace. The saint said: “Just be silent.” When ever he asked a question, the answer was “just be silent.” Initially, it irked him. Later on, he accepted it. Days went by, his questions started vanishing. After 10 days, there were no more questions. Only silence. At that point, the only answer possible was “silence”. All ghosts vanished from him and he started seeing the naked truth.

Without anyone telling him anything, through silence, he saw his own life as if he was watching a movie. A beautiful life, completely uprooted and destroyed by his own mind and its expressions. Nobody else was wrong here, except his own mind. Mind created all the agonies. Mind created doubts. Mind created suspicion, jealousy. Mind created ghosts. Mind created everything. They were all so far from reality and it abruptly took away the life of a beautiful person, to say the least about the agony of others. It denied peace at home. With each new thought, each new revelation, Brian started crying more and more. He sat and cried for almost two days, without food or sleep. Nobody disturbed him. Nobody bothered him in the monastery. For once, he was thankful. He experienced the expansion happening in his own heart when gratefulness blossomed there. He liked that feeling.

Mind Spoils Moments. Mind Creates and Destroys Happiness. Mind creates the veils of dissatisfaction. Watch your mind…

He saw the whole fabric of his own life. He saw the moments at which he missed to express love, express care, express compassion, kindness, beauty, energy, even to hug and feel the warmth and heartbeat of his own wife and children;  just because of the overpowering devils called Jealousy and Suspicion that ruled his mind. These devils were constantly destroying his each moment. They prevented him from enjoying any moment and also destroyed the bliss of his home. He realized “We must cherish each moment with love and gratitude. Moments never return back. We are growing old each day. Children become adults. We grow old. Childhood is lost, youth is lost, death comes closer. We cannot go back and love our children when they were young. We cannot go back to the past. We cannot rewind and replay. We cannot go back and love our husband or wife. If a moment is lost, it is lost for ever. We can handle our life either with love or with restlessness. When we handle our life with love, it gives us peace and contentment. When we handle all our relationships with love, it all gives us fulfillment. When restlessness is our expression, destruction is the result. Even if others treat us with contempt or hatred, if our heart is filled with love, our heart will be full. Nothing will affect us. Trust and Faith are essential in all relationships. Every moment of existence should be approached with love and gratitude. We own nobody. Nobody owns us. We are born alone and will die alone. BEWARE – Death is always around the corner. Live each moment, Love each moment. Never hurt anyone through thoughts, words or action. NON VIOLENCE in its perfection.” Brian got up and walked up and down, digesting his revelation.

When this revelation settled in him deeply, he was a changed man. He went to the Chief of the Monastery. He bowed to the saint and said “Thank You for the message. Through silence, you gave me the most valuable message of my life. I will use the rest of my life to express what I could not express in my whole life. Thank You.” The saint said: “In the stillness of your own mind, like the still water, you saw your own reflection. Your answer lies within your question. Nothing lies outside of you. The key to unlock the answer is silence, stillness. You have found the key. Now, go and live in peace.”

Brian went to his mother’s house, hugged his mother and children and cried. He went back to the city, took another rented house, found a job and brought his children and mother to the new house. His life changed for good, but Miranda was not alive to see this change. He regretted deeply. He placed the pictures of Miranda and Anna in the altar, along with the pictures of the saints and deities that he worshiped. He kept a lamp burning in his altar all the time. He did his best to take care of his mother and children. He never married again. He lived the rest of his life like a saint, spreading the wisdom that he “owned”, the hard way.

We are Unique Beings in the Garden of God. Express abundance of Love.

This story may sound too ordinary compared to the previous posts. I have a reason to put it here. The need of the moment is LOVE. The world needs it all the more. In-sensitiveness is destroying our lives and our mother earth. Lives are getting torn apart because of restlessness, ego, hatred, jealousy, anger and such baser emotions. What is the benefit of “being spiritual” and practicing many paths to liberation according to one’s personal liking, if we cannot express love and compassion? If our inner space is full of calamities, nothing can take you forward in spirituality; all practices will only amount to escapism. True liberation is in our capacity to express love unconditionally, at all times. Without having kindness, compassion, love, and all such higher qualities, over flowing from the heart, there can be no liberation. God does not need your money nor your reverence. God is within you, not outside of you. If you cannot see God in all beings and learn to respect that God, what is your worship for? God is not sitting in temples, mosques or Churches. God lives in human hearts. If we cannot see the God within us and in the hearts of others, no amount of worship will get us salvation. Noting will take us to liberation. Meditation, satsangs, yoga or praanayams are all absolutely useless, unless its core essence, which is unconditional love, cannot be expressed whole heartedly. Otherwise, this life is wasted.

If we cannot see God in everyone, How can we SEE GOD at all???

Almost the whole of our life, most of us live in the cage of our own conditioning. This state refuses us any happiness. We fail to see the beauty and inherent happiness of our current moment and hope for happiness in the future. We lose the precious moment called NOW. When mind is set on future or past, we do not enjoy our present. Thus when we miss all opportunities, regrets eat our conscience. How many quarrels!!! How many fights!!! How many disappointments!!! Because of our conditioning and mental blocks, how many people have we alienated from ourselves!!! Because of our limitedness, how much of love did we discard, block, burn!!! Have we ever thought how many people became sad because of our thoughts, words and action? What did we gain from this? Are we better off because others are unhappy? Dissatisfaction is the nature of our mind. Allow it to be dissatisfied. Yet, appreciate the current moment without resistance. The more we resist, the more we suffer. The more we accept, the more we will be peaceful. There cannot be a bright future for the one who lives based on emotions which are always temporary. Negative emotions unleashed through its uncontrollable expressions will only bring forth regrets, guilt, shame and sadness in the future. Emotional outbursts are like bullets – once fired, they cannot be re-called. They must kill. The more stronger the cage of your conditioning is, liberation becomes all the more impossible, unless a real shake up happens in life, such as the death of a dear one, to make your eyes open. Postponing any expression is foolishness. What if tomorrow never happens!!! If you cannot express love today, how can we be sure that there will be a tomorrow to express it? The same is with gratitude, compassion and kindness. Everything should be spontaneous. Everything should be from the heart. Your heart should be spontaneous with these expressions. Life will give you wonderful moments. Otherwise, sorrow after sorrow will haunt you. Regrets will destroy you. Guilt will imprison you. There is no tomorrow. Do it NOW. ACT NOW.

In the midst of God’s Abundance, We chose poverty.Poverty of the heart…

LOVE YOU – DEEPLY

M

Jealousy The Eternal Disease that KILLS…