Bina talks about spirituality and many myths, biases, and prejudices surrounding it. Here’s her opinion piece, in the weekly column, exclusively in Different Truths.
I met a lady the other day, who spoke about spirituality. I was surprised when she was critical of people acquiring degrees or spending money. She believed if a person dressed well, then they can’t be spiritual. Dressing well shows others that you take care of yourself. It shows confidence which attracts positive attention. Your clothing is going to have a direct effect on people’s default assumptions of you — the better you’re dressed, the more respect and attention they’re going to automatically give you.
Clothing serves as a substitute for the character in the eyes of people who don’t know you well enough to judge you by anything else.
Acquiring degrees cannot harm us. Knowledge is vital to success. Through knowledge, we gain wisdom that helps us to grow. It does not matter if we love to acquire degrees, explore, research and experience. Knowledge also helps the community as a whole. We can make valuable contributions and bring about a change to old ideas and traditions which we follow blindly. Knowledge is power.
What is extravagant to us may not be extravagant to the person who has wealth. If it’s their own hard earned money, let them experience it the way they desire. No one says don’t sing, dance or celebrate life. They may help someone in their own way without shouting from the roof top.
It’s nice to be spiritual but I think people get confused when they talk about spirituality. Spirituality does not mean disowning the world or wearing white clothes. We came into this world not to disown but to spread happiness, peace, and love and make the world a better place. It does not ask us to abstain from all the good things of life. It does not mean any particular practice. It is a certain way of being. To get there, there are many things to do. It means being happy, positive and giving happiness to others. It means controlling anger, jealousy, and negativity.
Spirituality is not about religion. Neither is it about gods and rituals. It does not say we can’t enjoy life. It says to be selfless, persevere, have integrity and learn to smell the roses on our way. To be selfless we have to be compassionate. When we are compassionate there is no motive in helping the other, and we don’t expect anything in return. But that’s always rewarding and highly gratifying, so it’s not difficult to practice that.
Be kind, be grateful, and always remember what others have done for us. We can’t come into this world alone; neither can we survive alone. So trust yourself, and others, don’t be judgmental, every person has their own story. Let’s not be carried away and be arrogant when life looks up and get depressed when life goes down. Around us, there are people who need us. We have to learn to live with them too. It’s not always about ‘I’, it’s about ‘We’. If we look around there are many around us who need help.
If each one of us shares a small part of what we have with someone in need we can create a beautiful world. That’s spirituality. Be sensitive to the have-nots and give a helping hand.Feel inspired by people who are successful, let’s not pull them down when things go wrong with us.
Sadhguru explains it in a very nice way “This is like a garden in your house. If the soil, sunlight or stem of a plant is in a certain way, it won’t yield flowers, you have to do something. You have to take care of those things. So if you cultivate your body, mind and emotions and energies to a certain level of maturity, something else blossoms within you that is what is spirituality. When your rationale is immature, it doubts everything. When your rationale matures, it sees everything in a completely different light.’’
People have their own priorities of finding happiness and experiencing life. As long as we don’t harm others it does not matter how we chalk out our life. Even when we follow our passion it’s possible to be kind and give back to the society. What is important is to balance our happiness, care for ourselves and help others in whatever way we can.
Finally, life is too short. Cherish every moment!
Photos sourced by the author.
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Writer and poetess. Writing, people, philosophy, and photography are her strength. Besides short stories and poems, she loves to write about issues, that touches her. She did the “Citizen Journalist show” for CNN-IBN to create awareness for children with Learning Difficulty. Administrator and jury member of two groups, “Galaxy of Literary Luminaries;” and “Panorama of Poetry”, she won prizes and recognition for many poems and prose. She believes kindness is the most appealing quality.