We are all sinners, and most of us don’t know that we have sinned. There are others who realise that they have sinned but don’t want to repent. [Read more]
About P P Wangchuk
It gives good, positive vibes to be among enlightened people; and one feels “somewhat enlightened”. One is also reminded that life is nothing if not lived for others and is wasted in routine existential struggle that amounts to just killing time. A few days ago, I happened to be at a gathering that had luminaries representing different religions, who spoke on how to make a difference in life by living for others and how you can dogood to yourself by doing good to others.
It was the occasion of the celebration of Mahakaruna Day, an annual feature, organised by the Mahabodhi International Meditation Centre, Delhi; the participants having gathered from across the globe to help enable us to live for others. Bhikkhu Sanghasena, the spirit behind the show, made it clear that his attempt was to make people understand that by being kind, compassionate and helpful, they are merely helping themselves in making their own lives more meaningful and worthy of living on this planet. And the tool for such a life can be found in Karuna, which is much more than compassion, love, help and positive attitude put together. It is compassion in action; and it is best manifested when you see in yourself others’ pain and problems and get into action to remove them. It is best used when you help the needy as if you are helping yourself, thereby gaining immense joy and self-awareness.
There is a cute story on this: Two people were walking along a sea shore. The sea tide was very powerful, and with every tide thousands of fishes were swept towards the land. One of the men was worried as the fishes would die but it was impossible for him to throw each one of them back into the sea as the sea tide won’t stop. Anyway, he started throwing them back into the sea. The other person laughed at this “madness”and asked how it would make a difference. To which, the man replied: “Look, it has made a difference to the ones I could throw back.”
That is Karuna in action, the real religion one can hope for and live for. One who makes Karuna the “engine” of one’s life can surely have a better and more meaningful journey. And that is called the “journey of purpose” that leads to fundamental changes in one’s society and makes it more peaceful and progressive.
The New Year may mean different things to different people. For many of us, it means buying a lot of books that will book us for the whole year. The New Year means books all the way – to live with books and to sleep with books. Just like any other essential thing in life without which you can’t live, books too make your life meaningful and enjoyable. [Read more]
It is time again to indulge in New Year greetings and wish for happiness and prosperity. Also time to resolve to be a better person — more caring, loving and helping. Perhaps that defines the most important qualities of a good man/woman. Nothing else matters in making our journey of life smooth and meaningful on this planet.
To tweak Brad Paisley’s words, we can say the New Year is like a notebook of 365 blank pages; it is up to us to fill them up with the best we can. And those of us who fail to do so either because of sheer laziness and ignorance or by being not caring enough will surely be wasting a year that could otherwise make a difference in creating a world more peaceful and loving.
Life becomes meaningful by doing little things that anybody can do quite easily. One way is to speak politely and nicely even in the worst of crisis. That helps the person see sense and let not be overtaken by the tide of hatred and enmity. A smile can do wonders and get you responses that will help you overcome many a problem and make your day. It is like a rose blooming and spreading fragrance and instilling a sense of beauty and love.
And to make a good day, any day, let’s resolve to speak sweet words, help the needy in whatever way we can, never let our anger have the better of us, never lose our sense of balance in dealing with any situation, and think several times before going in for any rash action. That will save us of several likely problems that could harm our tranquility and spoil the stability of the boat of our life that is crucial for sailing smoothly.
New Year also gives one a chance to hope and make great things happen. It gives you a chance to be optimistic of being in a position to fulfil all unfulfilled wishes and to aspire for higher heights. All that is needed is to list your resolve and be firm in giving shape to your dreams by carrying out your plans systematically and unwaveringly.
And, of course, no New Year resolve is complete until one has a plan to read at least a dozen great books of one’s choice, and a plan for a holiday with one’s near and dear ones to a new place to get fresh insight from the richness and wonders of nature. When you are in the lap of nature, you get a sense of your true worth and you feel the need to be in tune with nature, which, in turn, keeps you in tune with the realities of life.
Here I would like to quote G K Chesterton to remind ourselves that “unless a man starts afresh about things, he will certainly do nothing effective.”
You will see what you want to see. The world for you is as good or as bad as you are. I am not saying anything new; but it’s just a reminder that is badly needed to keep ourselves in touch with the realities of life so that its purpose is not lost while we go on aimlessly in our journey on this planet.
There is a cute story on this time-tested wisdom. A young boy was roaming around a mountain near his home. One day, he happened to shout; he heard “another boy” shouting at him. He got angry at ‘him’ and shouted back: “You bad boy, I hate you.” The ‘other boy’ too shouted at him in the same manner. This led to abuses and counter-abuses for quite sometime. Tired and fed up, the boy gave up and went home. There he told his mother about the ‘incident’.
The mother told the boy: “My dear son. You have to be good to see goodness in others. Go and shout at the ‘other boy’ that he is a nice and good boy; and see what he says.”
The boy did it the very next day and received all praise in response to his praises. Happy at the ‘good turn of events’, the boy joyfully went back home and told his mother accordingly.
The point here is that we have to be good to see others behaving similarly with us. The action-reaction outcome is stark and immediate. Even a venomous snake will not harm you until it is threatened. You be friendly and kind, and the whole world will embrace you with love and affection. You have to see the positive side in everything that you come across because, as Helen Keller said,” Keep your face towards the sunshine, and you can’t see any shadow.”
We are going to celebrate a great day, Christmas, in a few days. It would be the time we bring out the spirit of giving without any expectations. Christmas reminds us of love, compassion and sacrifice for a good cause. It reminds us to forget the meaningless and go for true values that go in the making of a better world around us.
Christmas reminds us of Mark Twin who had said, “Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.” This means we have to be kind because this is the only way to be good to ourselves.