Sunday, April 20, 2008

Life is relationships by bhagvan

What else is life, if not relationships? Could you conceive of yourself without any relationship whatsoever? You arise in relationship with your father, mother, brother, child, husband, education, nation, gender, home. In fact you are relationships. If you remove all these relationships, where are you? Think about it and find out if you exist or not.

You suffer because you try to understand. Trying to understand and finding fault would never help. It is like peeling an onion, you could keep on peeling and arrive nowhere. If you were to read psychology or philosophy to try to explain understand the other, there is no hope for you. You judge because you do not feel connected to the other. If only you would have learnt the art of experiencing the other, whether your spouse, parent or child - you would be in joy.

I often give an example of a strange couple I met. He was a dean of a medical college, she was a vegetable vendor. He was handsome, well-read, cultured and prosperous. And she was the opposite. There marriage was strange because they got into an agreement before marriage that neither would ask the other to change. He experiences her wild and rustic ways, while she experiences his dignity and calmness. Neither trying to change the other. It is one of the most successful marriages I have ever seen. 25 yrs of marriage, they still have life in their relationship.

If you could experience your wife as she nags, screams or yells at you, that would be most beautiful. Similarly as your husband bothers, troubles you or is indifferent, if you could experience him without trying to change him, you would experience joy. This is the only way you could set right your relationships bx relationships then become a source of joy. If you know this art of experiencing your spouse, you are then not only happy with your spouse, you are happy with everything in life. You would then experience a cup of coffee, the banana you eat, and your everyday morning walk - you would know you are walking in heaven - it might look difficult to you, well it is not!

The accerated change, which is the characteristic of modern civilization is having a telling impact on human relationships, families are breaking apart. The worst hit is the children and youth. What can they do to help their parents.

As you start relating to your parents with greater love and concern, strangely you would find that they would start relating between themselves in a better way. So children could bring about a better relationship among parents by improving their own relationship to the parents. It is not given to you to condemn them or judge them. If you would love them and respect them, you would find things automatically working out for you. Parents want you to be their children. You should not try to advise, argue or dictate to them - if you experience your mother or father dominating you, without resisting it, it would give you great joy, that itself would transform your parents, in the course of time you would see your own parents coming together. This has happened any number of times among the youth.

Captivation is not love, emotion is not love, attachment is not love, possession is not love. In the moment when you discover real love, you will also discover a deep connection, you will suddenly feel connected with your parents, with your siblings, your friends and absolutely everyone in the world. Without this connection, life is not worthy of being lived. Love is to be discovered. It will happen.


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Contemplative Questions

Here is a set of questions that would provoke you and put you through some soul searching. They are not about religion nor about ethics. They are merely about you.

They are not meant to serve as solutions nor are they meant to lead you anywhere. These questions are meant to serve as tools to discovering yourself.

1) Do you perceive the Presence of a benevolent force guiding, protecting and shaping your life? What name do you give that Presence? When did you best feel this Presence?

2) What is your opinion of God? Is your opinion drawn from religion, books, parents and or your personal experience of life?

3) Do you pray? Do they get answered? How often?

4) Do you think it is possible to relate to the Divine? What relationship would you opt?

5) Here is a story for you - Two fierce enemies once did a penance to placate god and receive boons vying with each other. God appeared to the first man and asked what he wanted. He said "give me twice of whatever you give my enemy". Then God appeared to the second one. Even before God could say anything he asked, "God, would you please tell me what my enemy asked for? On knowing his prayer request, he said, "then God, blind me in one eye."
Now what would you wish for yourself, your best friend and your worst enemy if God gave you a chance?

6) Have you ever experienced a coincidence or chance that seems to have involved so many people and factors that you can't stop wondering if a mastermind was behind this operation? If yes, do you savour the experience often and have you shared it with someone close to you?