Is the fight for Respect or the Ego?

Is spirituality about turning the other cheek after being slapped on one? Can the words ‘ego’ and ‘self- respect’ dare to present itself in the dictionary of a spiritual person? Does spirituality ask for absolute compliance in everything? How can anything be condemned by a person who wishes to renounce the world?

I am sure the above questions are no stranger to you. These would have come up when you had to put your foot down and say no.  Your own mind would have inspected to ensure the fight you are putting up is to be heard and certainly not to strengthen your ego. And, the pressure is more real when your views don’t match with the group you belong.

Although nothing should rob our intellect of its capacity to choose the right thing in a situation. We should also know that the right or wrong we choose is also stemming up from our limited knowledge. Before we call someone wrong, we should see if we are slaves to our own beliefs. Are we just resisting or ‘hearing’ others out? Most of the time it is the ego at play but we mistake it to be something that is protecting our self-respect.

Poor Ego has got such a reputation that even thinking about it is a SIN. It is one of those things that everybody indulges in but never wants to be associated with. Also, we comfortably ignore the role it plays in the process of our self-preservation.

Does that mean Ego is good? Nothing is good or bad in itself. It exists because it is required to survive and to evolve. If we knew where to stop then the above question itself becomes unnecessary.

Both do pretty much the same thing, with the only the difference that the ego overdoes it and the other knows where to stop. And also whosoever side we choose to be in more often takes the lead thereafter.

That’s not to say “don’t resist” but only after listening to others. If we still do not see any good then we should resist but our INTENTION shouldn’t be shallow. We will encounter people who will challenge us and whose views might not be right for obvious reasons. But we can use them to strengthen our resolve and thereby forming a new habit. If you loose your calm at times, it is okay. Don’t beat yourself up but stop indulging in it as soon as you realise.

Besides, it is all in the word ‘Self-Respect’- respecting THAT SELF/Divine in everything that we see. That is why we do Namaste.

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Everything that we see is a shadow cast by that which we do not see.” -Martin Luther King, Jr….I love this quote for reasons different from what it might have been said for.

Image: Internet

Do I Always Tell The/My Truth?

We had the privilege of hosting family and friends over the past couple of weeks. And there had been some interesting conversations.  One such went something like this……

When you walk into the house you will hardly miss the book collection. It is strategically placed 😉

“Aah! I see you have a good collection here”
“Thank You”
“Whats with all these spiritual texts? Did not know that you are into all this?!” …….Silence
“Hahaha, I haven’t read them all.” silence again…
“Hmmmm…So, do you practice what you read?”
“Try to”
“Ohh so you never lie? All holy texts urge man to speak the truth, don’t they?”
(Smiled and asked her if I can get her another cup of coffee)
“You didn’t answer my question?”
“I do lie. I try to remain quiet at those times but if I have to then mostly I speak the situation”
“Oh Okay.” “What are your thoughts on the beef ban?”
Another dangerous question 😶

Oh, she was good, very good at asking tough questions 😋

Okay, coming back to the topic of discussion.  I do not think any religion would ask you to always speak your blind truth. Your truth is your understanding of the situation which may not be completely true. Where do we go in search of facts?

What is Truth? Is it “Your Truth” or “The Truth”. We don’t always have to fill the silence.

However, the problem arises when we want to be a part of every conversation. So, we participate in the gossip when we know it isn’t right. It takes enormous strength to stay away and at the same time to be kind and to speak your truth.

But, before we start, we could ask ourselves, if it is even important to speak or to entertain the negativity that drains our energy. I am not hundred percent there yet. I still agree to things to keep the close-knit happy. I restrain from gossiping and carefully choose the people I interact with but I still haven’t learnt the art of being assertive and yet kind.

At times, when people mistake the silence for the disability then that is when you are tested. It is okay to commit mistakes if you know they are blunders to be avoided. After all, we are Human learning to stay humane.

Bhagavad Gita on Speech…

Anudvegakaram vākyam satyam priyahitam ca yat |
svādhyāyābhyasanam caiva vāṅmayam tapa ucyate || BG 17.15 || 

Non-irritating, truthful and pleasing speech, reading of Scriptures and performing spiritual practices.

So Why Grieve?

Life gets tough at times and we all learn complex lessons through our life experiences. Sometimes it is difficult to cope but in the process, we grow stronger.

Just like everybody else, I have my own challenges to overcome but I don’t want to stress more than what I should. I don’t want to follow the crowd that thinks to stress over things helps.

Like it or not, none of us is going to be here forever. So why stress on stressors? It is easy to say but just turn around and see if stressing had helped.

Let me quote the Bhagavad Gita,  death is the only truth you know for sure and is certain. Moreover, you think you are this body and you get too attached to its activities but ultimately you have to even drop this body here before you make your journey to the next. And you wouldn’t remember a thing of this life in your next. So why worry about anything? (chapter 2, verses 25-30).

My fav among the above verses is the one below. Everybody knows this but yet only a few understand it. Beautifully said…

Aśhcharya-vat paśhyati kaśhchid enan
Aśhcharya-vad vadati tathaiva chānyaḥ
Aśhcharya-vach chainam anyaḥ śhṛiṇoti
Shrutvāpyenaṁ veda na chaiva kaśhchit //

Some view the soul as amazing, some describe it as amazing, and some hear of the soul as amazing, while others, even on hearing, cannot understand it at all.

Something to remember …

Image: the Internet

 

Moved Into New Rented Home

Moved into new rented home just like the same way I moved into this body with absolutely nothing.

As soon as our parents got to know about our movement, they shared many things to help us make a smooth transition into this new chapter of ours. Just the same way, I got a name and other things along with a family as soon as I moved into this body that I call mine.

I try not to entertain any thoughts about adding anything more to the rented apartment than what is required. Because I know although I live here, it is not mine then I wonder why does it not come easily to me when I look at my body. That I had also signed a rental agreement before moving into this body and one day I have to vacate even this that I call mine.

Something to remember…or the only thing worth remembering…

Srimad Bhagavad Gita

Adhyatmajnana nityatvam tattva jnanartha darsanam
etaj jnanam iti proktam ajnanam yad ato ‘nyatha

Settled conviction in the nature of the SELF and understanding that the knowledge of the Self as the ultimate in Knowledge – this is declared to be wisdom; whatever is
other than this is ignorance.

Act To Express, Not To Impress

We have an inexhaustible appetite for acceptance and approval and therefore every action of ours is directed towards that goal. We try so hard and yet the goal never seems to arrive.

Anytime I do that, I pity myself. We suffocate ourselves in the process thinking once accepted people will stop judging us. Unfortunately, people will remember what they like to remember, we can influence it but cannot control it. There is no end, we have to keep acting to impress people all the time. Is it even worth it?

Let’s introspect.

  • Why do we expend so much of our energy seeking recognition?
  • What happens when we are recognised?
  • Who is seeking recognition?
  • In the end, who feels better?

Now, in reality, are we trying to impress others or in the process trying to impress our Self? You feel happier when you make an impression. So, ultimately, every action that YOU make is to make YOU happy.

So, stop acting and start expressing. And, let that be a kind expression because what goes around does come around 🙂

Image: Internet

 

 

Frugal Healthy Indian

post from my other blog…

SSoulSSearching

With the west turning frugal, frugality has gained momentum. Over the past few years, everyone had been talking about living frugally. Today there are books on frugality, bloggers are writing about it, frugal ventures are happening, frugal entrepreneurs are born and frugal innovations are on a high.

While it was not yet a fad in the West, East Asians believed in following a frugal but healthy lifestyle. My grandparents who celebrated 58 years of their marriage stand as a model to that lifestyle. They don’t pop pills like we do today instead they believed in following a healthy Mind and a healthy Diet.

My grandmother even today follows her schedule that she did when she was in her teens. She says it has done her only good. As a homemaker, wife, a mother and now a grandmother she never compromises on our health and ensures we get a balanced meal. Mind you, all this…

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Worship The Fearless, Formless Shiva

Happy Maha Shivaratri to One and All. During this day, we should at least make an attempt to understand one word of the many Shiva Stotras.

My favourite has always been Shivoham by Sri Adi Shankaracharya. Jagat guru Shankaracharya has put everything that we could ever know of Shiva in a platter.

I believe we could enjoy Shivoham more if we knew its meaning.

I have found a link with its meaning. If we can soak ourselves even in a line uttered by one of the greatest teachers about the greatest Yogi, we would be blessed.

http://vedicyagyacenter.com/wp-content/themes/vedic/pdfs/NirvanaShatakamLyrics-withtranslation.pdf

Things to ponder-

Who does the Adi Yogi, Shiva meditate upon?

Is Shiva just another picture born out of someone’s imagination?

What does Shiva Linga represent?

What are we to remember when we look at a Shiva lingam?

Is it not necessary we Know him to worship him?

How many of us truly try to understand the meaning of any Shloka we recite?

We venerate him without knowing him. We should teach our kids the meaning of the prayers they chant. This small change will allow the children to Connect with the Divine out of Love and not Fear.

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