Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The real vacation - within!

In the previous post, we wrote about the holiday our friend was going to embark on, full of uncertainties ahead. In this post, let us see why we like to take holidays in the first place. Nowadays, it's trendy to be planning out vacations to exotic places with family/friends and hence the number of travel fairs, budget airlines, newspaper ads etc etc. What is it that makes us feel drawn to the idea of a "vacation"?

The first sad truth is that we are looking at the slightest opportunity to run away from our life, our daily routine. We have become so mechanical with our lives, we literally treat our body as a machine and each day as just another day. No wonder it feels "the same old job", "same old house", "same old family" etc. We have lost the essence. We have become dead. We have stopped seeing each day as a fresh day, each moment as a new moment. This is why we have lost the spirit to live our lives and it's no wonder we want a break.

As our Master says, when we infuse "spirit", even a "ritual" comes to life, this is "spi-rit-uality". Without the spirit, even spirituality becomes just another ritual.

Secondly, our true nature is that of freedom, without any bondages, without any conditioning, without any limitations. We are limitless energy, boundless joy, infinite bliss. But because we are forcing ourselves to live in familiar thought patters and societal conditioning, we have gradually started to identify ourselves with that solid and bounded mind-body system. When we visualise a large beach or a vast valley amidst huge mountains, our heart jumps with joy because our inner core connects with that vastness. The bounds are broken.

Another important thing, in a vacation, nobody knows us, nobody recognises us, our societal labels have no meaning. That is why we look out for a vacation where we become "nobody", because deep down our true nature is that of emptiness. We are nobody.

Deep down, we want to be away from our labels, because that is not our true nature. But again and again, we are pulled to it because we think that is what defines us. This is the conflict we go through all the time. As as result, even when we are there lying at the beach, this conflict haunts us. We are there worrying out work, home etc. As Paramahamsa Nithyananda says "worrying at office is called work, worrying at home is called home-work and worrying at a beach is called vacation!".

The best part is that a true vacation is something we can take within us, not at an external beauty spot. Imagine being 24 hours in vacation in our inner space, unclutched by all the nagging thought patters, worries, fears etc. That is what Swamiji called living enlightenment. With the grace of a living enlightened master, this is very much possible. That is the only reason masters have descended, to remind us of our infinite possibilities. Let us all take a vacation in our inner space and relax into it. Happy holidays! A related video in Swamiji's own words below:

Friday, April 3, 2009

The Road Trip of Life

April 10-12 is a long weekend here in Singapore because of Good Friday and we generally don't spare such precious long weekends in Singapore :) People are busy packing their bags to go to nearby Malaysia or Thailand for a trek in the jungles. So a friend of mine was saying, 'Dude, I won't be here for the long weekend. I am gone for a long drive with a group of friends to West Malaysia.'

I asked him if there were any particular places that they were going. He replied, 'Nope! This time its more of no-planning trip. Just go wherever, eat wherever and stay wherever types!!' ... He paused and then said, 'it sounds fun to me...'

It surely is fun. I agree with him totally. No planning as to where to pit-stop, where to eat etc. Just go, enjoy the traveling part and take the trip as it comes.

I was wondering, if a two-day trip can be so fun, by offloading the baggage of planning, just imagine how much more enjoyable our 60-70 years of life can be if we just flow with life?

Why can't we have the same attitude towards life? Instead, we plan and plan and plan... continuously, we keep planning not just about our life but about one generation behind us and one generation ahead us.

The answer is simple! We are scared about the insecurities of life. We do not enjoy our life simply because of our fear and greed: fearing the insecurities and greedy about our own expectations from life. We do not enjoy the path - the process of life. We think we will enjoy the goal, when it is reached but before it is reached we have already exhausted all the energy to enjoy it by constantly psychologically worrying about our fears and expectations about the goal that we have set. And after that goal is reached, there is another goal that awaits us.

Nithyananda says, 'When we live in utter insecurities of life, we are a seeker. That is why my parivrajaka, wandering days were one of the best parts of my life.'

When we live in utter insecurities of life, we just flow with life. We plan but chronologically only. We will not have an opportunity to psychologically worry about it because we are too busy enjoying and celebrating the path; then the path itself becomes the goal. Our fears and expectations keep our joy away from us.

The main difference between the road trip of my friend and our life is that my friend is already prepared to take on whatever comes his way as auspicious (mangalatva); either a tent in a jungle or a posh luxury suite; either food or no food. And hence he is saying the trip is going to be fun. There are no expectations or fears whatsoever. If there is any trace of either of them, one would certainly back off.

When it comes to one's own life, it is too far fetched to accept that insecurity for 70-80 years. Actually, even for one or two days it becomes difficult to accept because we are conditioned about our lives. We are conditioned by society, parents, friends etc. as to how one should live.

The irony is, all those from whom we learn to live are themselves most of the time living a life of total internal chaos.

When we surrender to the Existence, the Existence takes care of us... and this the truth. There are enough number of testimonials from people who believe in this to testify this, myself being one.

And you know what! When we surrender, the Existence always gives a lot more, many a times what we wouldn't even have dreamt of, both in our outer world and our inner world. And It also gives us the intelligence to be completely unperturbed whether that outer world is there or not there ...

Thank you Swamiji for giving us this shakti (energy), buddhi (intelligence), yukti (understanding), bhakti (devotion) and mukti ... liberation

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The Great Wall of Logic

During my piano class, I was discussing about one of the American Idol contestants with my music teacher. I was telling her about how this particular contestant, though visually impaired, so skillfully plays the piano while singing and is already in the Top 9.

To this my teacher replied, 'See, you don't need your eyes to see the notes and play beautifully. Though we think having eyes is gift for us to see and play, it actually is the biggest obstacle because when we have eyes, we only read the notes and play the notes, and not the song. We are so worried about the notes, the tempo, the notations etc. that we lose the beauty of the song, the emotion everything is lost because we are too busy reading everything with our eyes.'

This conversation reminded me of Swamiji's words, 'Our intelligence or logic is the greatest gift for human beings and it is also the biggest obstacle.'

As humans, we are different from other species because we have intelligence; we have mind; we have consciousness. We can do when we want to do something. When we are hungry we can choose to eat or not to eat. When we are sleepy, we can choose to sleep or stay awake. We can make conscious choice. We have that freewill.

Though I have written about this in our other posts, this is something which I come across everyday - how we make use of our freewill to decide things.

At a deeper level, as humans we have all the energy to go beyond this mind-body system, to merge with the Ultimate Consciousness, to realize we are one with the Ultimate Consciousness. Paramahamsa Nithyananda says, 'I am telling you, 'You are enlightened', then why don't you believe it? An enlightened master's words are always true and I am telling you like every other enlightened master born planet earth that you are already enlightened. All you have to do is to believe that you are enlightened.'

We choose to not believe the truth that every enlightened master has been saying for ages and ages, in all those thousands of scriptures, from all over the world. We choose to use our freewill to be with our mind which is always pulling us from the Ultimate Truth.

Our intelligence which can be used to every outer world comfort has become the greatest impediment in our progress in the inner world...

Simply because we think we are the most intelligent by suspecting each one of those masters who try to show the Ultimate Truth. We think we are most intelligent. Even the greatest of the intelligent scientists, Einstein, says 'Where Science ends, Spirituality begins.' Are we more intelligent that Einstein?

An enlightened master only helps to pull us out of our ignorance, which we mistake to be our intelligence. Paramahamsa Nithyananda says, 'Use your intelligence when required. That's all! Rest of the time, relax from it into your consciousness.'

Like He says, 'Its upto you whether you want to choose your mind/intelligence or choose Consciousness.'