One of my friends had been relentlessly helping out an uncle living nearby his house. This uncle had contracted the deadly virus and was literally gasping for breath like a fish without water. There were no beds in the hospitals and no healthcare facility was willing to admit him. Uncle was a poor vegetable-seller and owned a little cart (ठेला). Naturally, he didn’t have money for his treatment.
The private hospitals were a big no-no. My friend, a guy in his mid-twenties, is a budding entrepreneur. He didn’t have money. All he had was a heart full of care. He went out of his way and without caring about his own well-being, he rushed him from hospital to hospital in search of one single bed. After hours and hours of disappointment, they found one hospital in the outskirts of the district and they were willing to admit him. His oxygen level went down to 80 by then. To cut the long story short, he developed a lung infection and died yesterday morning with his oxygen level at 28.
Now, my friend is a normal guy. He isn’t a saint or an adept to face every challenge with courage and equanimity. He has a sensitive heart. Last night, he texted me.
He: I miss him. He was a good man. He had dreams. His dreams died with him. Do dreams die? How do I get out of this shock?
Me: His soul is out of the suffering. Death is just a comma. It isn’t a full stop. If he had dreams and those dreams were his burning desires, Narayan will give him another birth and very soon, he will be again on the track. Just because we can’t see him on and around our tracks, doesn’t mean he won’t be running! Mahadevi knows better than us. He will be placed on a new track to run.
He: This made me a bit lighter. Also, there is something else I wanted to talk about. I guess I have the symptoms.
Me (to lighten his mood): अंडा खाओ! (Eat eggs!)
He (in a concerned tone): Oh! Will that help? But how will I sit in front of Shiv Baba while meditating if I eat eggs? That will make him angry.
Me (retrying to divert his mind): भाई, बैठने के लिए ज़िंदा रहना पड़ता है। आलू is अंडा and अंडा is आलू। ज़रुरत में खा रहा है, ज़ुबान के लिए नहीं! (Brother, you will SIT when you stay alive. Egg is potato and potato is egg. Eating out of necessity and eating out of greed for the pleasure of tongue are two different things).
(My friend was too terrified to take it easy)
He: I worship Shiv ji every single day. I meditate. He won’t let me die, would He?
I didn’t answer; asked him to have plenty of rest and be safe and sent him few songs that would strengthen his faith in his Shiv ji.
After the conversation, something dawned upon me. I know he was terrified beyond explanation. Anybody would have been. After all, who doesn’t love his life?
It seems we all are married to our lives; some happily and most, not so happily. We have this love-hate relationship with it. Like a typical wife, Life keeps serving us कद्दू-करेला time to time.
“खाना है तो खाइये वरना कृप्या भाड़ में जाइये!”
And like a typical husband, we keep criticising Life almost every second.
इतना नाम भगवान का ले लेते जितना ज़िन्दगी को कोसते हैं तो प्रभु प्रकट हो जाते घर के आंगन में!
Then, there are people around me who keep saying, “Why do you worship and talk about Devi all the time when clearly She is INDIFFERENT towards our pain. She could have destroyed the virus if She wanted to! She didn’t. She isn’t. Then, She is INCAPABLE of doing so. Why to worship someone who can’t protect us!”
Ah! They make me laugh my brains out. She is INCAPABLE!
सृष्टिकर्त्री ब्रह्मरूपा गोप्त्री गोविन्दरूपिणी ॥ संहारिणी रुद्ररूपा तिरोधान-करीश्वरी । सदाशिवाऽनुग्रहदा पञ्चकृत्य -परायणा ॥ (Meaning)
Wow. Clearly, She is INCAPABLE. And why would She “kill” the virus! She is SriMaata. If She is our Mumma, isn’t She the Mumma of the Virus, too? Why do we always perceive God as someone who would take US out of our problems and challenges while putting someone else’s life at stake? When the work of the Virus is over, it will be wiped off. It has always been that way. The Cosmic Intelligence never abandons us. We don’t doubt our mother’s intention ever, do we? Why don’t we trust Narayan in the same way then?
After all, Shri Hari Mumma ही तो हैं!
I don’t mean to belittle, even a bit, the suffering humankind is facing together at this point of time. I realise the gravity of the issue. I know this IS serious. The loss that we have faced, the void created by the death of our loved ones can never ever be filled.
Just that I don’t know how blaming God for every single of our issue can help us here (or anywhere!).
भाई, दिक्कतें हैं तो हैं! ये उम्मीद करके क्या भला हो जाएगा कि काश ऐसा ना होता! दिक्कत हैं। जरा-व्याधि-रोग-संताप-सुख-दुःख सब है। पर ये थोड़ी न कहा है किसी ने कि अकेले झेलना पड़ेगा! नारायण भी झेलेंगे न साथ-साथ! जब खुद महाकाल ही साथ झेल रहे हैं सब तो काल से कैसा डर!
पीठ खुजलायेगी और हाथ नहीं पहुंचेगा तो यह कहने से ठीक हो जायेगी खुजली कि काश ना खुजलाता पीठ! हम भूल जाते हैं कि नारायण हैं और कभी मन से नहीं बुलाते उनको, “प्रभु! पीठ! खुजली!” फिर देखिये प्रभु पीठ खुजलाते हैं या नहीं! (Metaphorically and also, literally!)
We forget Him. He has never forgotten us even for a fraction of second.
When we are having the best out of life, we say, “कृपा है जी भगवान की बहुत!” (His grace is in abundance in our lives!). The moment something is not going according to our will, we are so devastated that He has fled from our lives.
और जाना था तो कम से कम अकेले चले जाते प्रभु, अपनी कृपा तक उठा के ले गयें भागते वक़्त!
I am one with all things –
in beauty, in ugliness,
for whatsoever is, there I am.
Not only in virtue
but in sin too I am a partner,
and not only heaven
but hell too is mine.
Buddha, Jesus, Lao Tzu –
it is easy to be their heir,
but Genghis, Taimur and Hitler?
They are also within me!
No, not half – I am the whole of mankind!
Whatsoever is man’s is mine –
flowers and thorns,
darkness as well as light.
And if nectar is mine, whose is poison?
Nectar and poison – both are mine.
If our sweetheart, Our Shri Hari, saves our lives, He is our God. If He gives us Life, He is our God. What if He gives us Death, won’t He be our God then?
PS. Lyrics are Love. Hope my os.me family will love it.
Om Namo Narayana!