It’s been one day since I resigned from my position as the general manager of the universe, as mentioned in my previous blog. How does it feel to quit this job? I have mixed feelings and there are withdrawal symptoms on the first day away from work.
I attended a family get together shortly after my resignation, where people expressed different opinions on just about everything. It was very hard to resist offering my own opinion but with a lot of self-control I succeeded, most of the time. There were a few slip-ups here and there but its very hard to give up the conditioning that comes from a job that I had held for decades.
A little later, I found that this resignation from my post was very liberating. I no longer felt responsible for what was going on in the world; I was never responsible anyway – I just lived with the illusion of responsibility. Now I came an observer, and when this happened there was a shift in my thinking. Suddenly, the world became such a beautiful place., a wonder to behold.
There are snow-capped peaks to the north, with beautiful glaciers that melt into rivers. These rivers meander across the plains, nourishing millions of people during their journey, and finally merge into the ocean. The ocean water evaporates, and the cycle begins again. There are fertile valleys, glorious forests and all kinds of beautiful creatures that live on planet earth. The seasons merge into one another. The brutal Canadian winter is followed by spring and then summer, when the outdoors become available to us. In India, the monsoon rains bring relief from the intense summer and blend into winter. Seen from a distance, it is the perfect cycle of nature, with everything in balance.
Humans are beautiful, in their appearance, and, in their actions – most of the time. Thousands of years ago, they created beautiful words in the Sanskrit language; we can read them even today. In Sanskrit, the words are inter-related by the rules of grammar, they just flow into each other. Just listen to Om Swami ji when he speaks in Sanskrit, he brings this so-called “dead” language to life. What could be more beautiful than that?
There is so much beauty in our ancient literature. The Upanishads show different paths of spiritual enquiry, in mostly simple words, Sometimes, word meanings are hard to catch, but in the age of google, nothing is difficult. We live in such wonderful times, where the spiritual knowledge of the world is available to us at the click of a mouse. The Bhagavat Gita is polished poetry, expounding deep spiritual truths. Durga Saptashati is filled with beautiful passages describing the Goddess Durga in all her forms.
Thanks to the Internet, I could listen to Om Swamiji doing havan using the Lalita Sahastranama. This beautiful work is nothing but pure, lyrical poetry describing the divine mother in magical terms. The Tulsi Ramayana is another jewel in our rich tradition; you can sing or recite it in any way, and it will always sound great.
I realize I am not the General Manager of Indian culture, either. Giving up my ownership of this particular culture, I am free to explore other religions, other cultures and find gems of wisdom everywhere. One of the most beautiful songs in Christianity goes like this:
Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound
That saved a wretch such as me.
I once was lost, but now I am found.
I once was deaf, but now I hear.
It is so true. Yesterday, I was lost in my own opinions. I was so busy expressing these opinions, that I was deaf. When I stopped talking, I could hear. It is, indeed, amazing grace that brought me to this realization.
Human relationships are beautiful. The mother-in-law and daughter-in-law relationship is much derided, but just look at the words. When daughter in law (DIL) and mother-in-law (MIL) get together, then Dil and Mil are together, and magic happens. It is a love-hate relationship but there is great beauty in it. The husband -wife relationship is the subject of many jokes, but it can still be very beautiful. The relationship between a husband and a sister-in-law (Sali) is in a class by itself.
Human interactions are beautiful. Sometimes there is violence that makes news headlines but far more often, there is peace, and this never gets reported. At any given time, there is more peace than violence in this world. You will just have to take my word for it, as the media will never report this fact.
Sometimes, it takes a child to see the beauty of this world. The child has very few responsibilities and mostly lives in the moment. I watched some children at the airport the other day. They were busy playing, for them the airport was a very exciting place, with all kinds of “cool” stuff in it. The adults never see this, as they are too busy worrying about flight delays, line-ups, immigration controls and documentation.
Be like a child and drop all your worries. You are not the general manager of the universe.
Just sit back, make sure you seat is in an upright position, fasten your seatbelt and enjoy the journey of life. Who knows if we will ever come back this way?