Spirituality and Me Print E-mail

Guest Article by Robin Pupneja, New Delhi

I would consider 'turning spiritual' as my biggest achievement because my whole attitude towards life has changed. I constantly strive to be a better human being. I have started looking inwards and realized that there are so many things which can be worked upon to improve myself as a person.

Earlier, I used to take everything for granted and didn't have any higher goal in life. However, I can now value even the smallest of things. I have developed a sense of gratitude towards that Divine Force that has blessed me with millions of invaluable things without even asking for them. My focus has shifted from this world to something which is beyond this world ever since I started listening to Gita lectures by Smt. Jaya Row. Whatever little growth I have experienced, if any, is because of highly inspiring lectures given by Smt. Jaya Row and I am at a loss for words to express my gratitude and appreciation.

I have come to see that everything in life is a passing phenomenon. Each one of us has to go through this roller-coaster ride called life and invariably we seem to get overexcited during the highs and get extremely depressed during the lows. As a result we become subservient to the external factors and get affected by them. Alexander Pope rightly said, "O thoughtless mortals! Ever blind to fate, too soon dejected, and too soon elate." It is said that nothing in this world can affect you if you don't want it to. A true Vedantin remains unfazed in all the situations and mantains his equilibrium no matter what happens. The best and worst of the situations come and go. However, in and through these experiences there is one changeless, permanent entity, Atman, which is impeccable and untouched by any of these changes. If our identification and focus shifts from body, mind and intellect to the Spirit then we are able to go through life as if watching a movie. The pairs of opposites - victory and defeat, poverty and prosperity, heat and cold also don't perturb us and true success lies in not getting affected by either of them.

Smt. Jaya Row says this waking state that we are in right now is as illusory as the dream that you had last night and how true it is. In fact this is one of the truths that hit me like a bullet. It is then that I became curious to know more about our spiritual treasure, the Bhagavad Gita. Waking and dream worlds are both illusions. They differ only in degree, not in kind. As long as we are dreaming we consider the dream world real, when we wake up we consider the waking world real. Any state appears real as long as we are in it however the moment we move on to the next state the former ceases to exist. Vedanta says we cannot claim any more reality of this world than we would of the dream world. It doesn't matter if you are a king or a beggar in the dream, similarly in the waking state it makes no difference whether you are a millionaire or bourgeoisie because we can carry forward only our inner personality. Yet too much importance is given to the physical aspects. After I was exposed to this highest knowledge of Vedanta, I felt that no matter how comfortable and luxurious our lives can get we are still bound by this prison of body, mind and intellect as they are finite. Now, I have this constant urge to get to that state which is beyond this world. Just thinking about it puts me on a high, never mind the actual achievement.

The crux of the matter is life can't be just about birth, growth, decay, disease and death. There has to be more to it. The day we realize this, all the petty and selfish things lose their stranglehold over us and we begin to enjoy life insulated from the traumas of the world. The need of the hour is knowledge and this is where eternal principles of the scriptures come into picture. Even a little bit of knowledge is enough to change our mindset and attitude towards life. It encourages out of the box thinking and enables us to look at things afresh. More importantly it keeps us balanced in every walk of life.