One fine morning ,I was standing on the balcony of my third floor flat facing the road down which had a big pothole in the middle. A cycle rickshaw swerved suddenly to avoid the pothole and came in front of the motor bike which was otherwise supposed to be able to overtake it by a fair margin. But, it was not to be and both the parties to the small accident suffered minor injuries. A crowd, bent upon delivering justice on the spot gathered and held the bike rider responsible for the accident. Having been an eye witness with an overview, I intervened and explained what had actually happened which was well received. The crowd dispersed and the matter ended amicably.
As one gazes the mighty Brahmaputra river in high spate during the monsoon season, one notices a whole lot of things flowing down or being carried by the river. One such much publicised “thing” swept downstream was an elephant which ended up in Bangladesh, unfortunately succumbing to death a few days later. One thought that comes to the mind is that “whereas the inert things were floating down wherever the current took them, the poor elephant was swept away by the strong current despite its best efforts to reach the bank of the river” !
A parallel may perhaps be drawn with the life current that takes individual lives through different detours to reach the final destination called “DEATH” at the end of the journey of LIFE . In between, there are frantic efforts to make the voyage as Comfortable and Grand as possible. At this, some are successful and some are not, who ascribe it to destiny.
The question is can destiny be changed ? As long as one is floating with the current of life, measured in units of time, without ever getting to pause for a while to understand where the current is heading for, the chance of changing the preordained course is extremely limited. There is no stopping of time as far as the physical body is concerned as it continues to tick relentlessly till the last breath. Therefore, to pause for a while in physical terms, is not possible, as the current constantly drives it to the final resting place or destination. The situation can be likened to the accident scene. When one is in the thick of things, it becomes very difficult to get an overview for taking the right decision to get out of a mess.
There is one way though, to overcome this handicap and be better placed to ride the current instead to one’s liking. Given that it’s not possible for the body to get out of the river of time, one can very well make the mind or its source, the consciousness to go to the bank, stay still and take an overall view of the scenario for a deeper understanding of the LIFE current. The obvious benefit is the beginning of mindful living instead of just drifting as per the dictate of the current and be in a position to write one’s own destiny. How it contributes to making life more fulfilling is to be experienced individually and there is simply no point listing the benefits, unless one is prepared to give it a try.
‘Taking the mind to the river bank’ may be read as a metaphor for drawing attention to the profound concept of “Sakshi” or “Witness”, designed to give an overview of the life current as expounded by Bhagvan Sri Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita and emphasized by Seers through ages as the essence of meditation, to help a soul seeking to wriggle itself out of the law of Action and Reaction called “Karma” or the maze of thick of things, so to say ! This can serve as the key to take control of destiny to an extent and wade through life purposefully. Eventually, the door opens up to get to the other side of the cycle of birth and death called ‘Samsara’ to enjoy unbridled freedom or Moksha as the Scriptures say. Though the word ‘Moksha’ may sound far-fetched to most people, a fulfilling life as opposed to life becoming subject to random ups and downs is what every human being is striving for and what the concept of ‘Witness’ offers as a lifeline.
The profundity of the concept, introduced by the most evolved minds or emanating from Divinity Himself is that one can name the “Witness” as Bhagaban, Allah ,God, Jesus or no name at all and yet get to the highest state possible for a human mind to reach through devoted practice where all such names finally dissolve into One absolute reality.
No doubt that the essence of Hindu philosophy ‘ Sanatan Dharma ‘, epitomized by the “Bhagavad Gita” is a Universal beacon to all, irrespective of diversity of religions as practised across the world. However, it is to be admitted that ‘Hinduism’ as a religion is just one of the many and is not necessarily immune from narrow or rigid interpretation by practitioners, as are other religions too.
While the essence or the very nature of Spiritualism is integration, the nature of a Religion or a Sect thereof is compartmentalization. The holistic ‘System approach’ to Management says that for any System to perform optimally and deliver the stated goals, functions of all the sub-systems have to be well coordinated and harmonised.
Frenzied activities in the name of religion is gaining ascendency globally. This can perhaps be attributed to many of the sub-systems working at cross purposes with that of the professed goals of a “Belief System”.
In a Social System, course correction is possible only when there is a change of heart in every individual who is part of the malfunctioning sub-system. It necessarily takes place slowly, as only at the time of final
stock taking , one is face to face with the abyssal gap between what is promised by a Belief System and what one actually collects as dividends of life. However, the power to induce a faster positive change for course correction, rests with a proactive society.
Allowing religions, divorced from the spiritualistic essence to take the front seat will only spell doom for mankind, a fact we may deny at our own peril.
Whether we as a global community are ready and able to rise to the occasion or not, will have a telling impact on Mankind continuing to be the first citizen of “Planet Earth”. It needs no reiteration that the challenge is huge .