Gone are the days when ‘idle’ was not just a word in the dictionary, but a practical reality and life’s inclusive component. The world is dazed and squinting and so are we. When did you last sit on the window pane looking out at the squirrels or the sunset? Or when did you last read a book on self development or spare a few minutes for spiritual relaxation? Or when did you last spend an idle weekend shopping or with your family? Or when did you meet your old friend for a lunch and laughed till your eyes dropped? If you were to ever pass through a busy market place, you will have plenty of time to observe the running men and women with blank faces. Who has the time to smile? To stop where you are and thank God for the life you have.
Being busy is now not just an activity but a disease. People who are working day and night have an obsession for it, also called workaholicism (being a workaholic). They can’t sit idle and anxiety takes over when they do so. The day isn’t far when humans will be called sheer machines. Today, the lifestyle of a child to that of an aged person is such that there is no scope for personal time. A student’s timetable is like a train schedule. Just one after another. From school to tuitions, from tuitions to vocational classes, then to the sports complex and again to another tuition. A corporate professional’s day moves from one assignment to another revolving around the emotions of * I need, * I want and * I own, without ever thinking of rising above the monotonous existence. Is speed is what we are born for? We cannot only blame our lifestyle. There are more internal causes you would guess, like meeting expectations, pleasing everybody and reaching your idol self, your goals and ambitions is what makes you work like there’s no tomorrow.
Technology can be our best friend, and technology can also be the biggest party spoiler of our lives. It interrupts our own story, interrupts our ability to have a thought or a daydream, to imagine something wonderful and create something beautiful, because we’re too busy bridging the walk from the cafeteria back to the office on the cell phone, one of the favourite pastimes of our current lifestyle.
We’ve talked of being busy for so long that we’ve forgotten that being busy was never the goal. We are not on this earth to be busy. We are here to build relationships, experience life, go places, create things, help others, or whatever else you decide. Our reasons for being will all be different but if you reflect deeply, you will realize and also feel that none of us feel we are here simply to be busy. But this thinking has lead us to think being busy is good, no matter what we’re busy with. Being busy is not the way we should measure our worth and being busy is a not a worthy goal for any of us. Before you know it, you might get caught up being busy doing worthless things. Sadly the business world continues to train us this way as employees are expected to put in 8-10 hours of work a day even though on some days they might have only 2 or 4 hours of productive things to do. Poor training!
God’s plan for enlarging and creating His beautiful kingdom of heaven, a new world order of peace, love and happiness of the future is so simple – one person telling another about God, the Savior and the Liberator i.e. giving the Supreme’s message of joyful, loveful and spiritual soul-conscious existence to each one. Yet we’re busy and full of excuses. Just remember, someone’s eternal destiny is at stake, that someone who is to receive the message from you. The joy you’ll have when you see that person in a liberated and joyful state not only here but in that kingdom of heaven being created will far exceed any discomfort you felt in sharing the gospel or message with him by taking out time from your busy existence.
To rise above the monotonous and busy existence explained in the last two days’ messages, we all require a regular dosage of newness to keep our hearts and minds fresh. How can we define newness? It is a change of thoughts, feelings, words, actions, circumstances – when all or some of these deviate from the normal or are new, they give us an experience of joy. On a physical level we go on a holiday or a party, watch a movie, etc., all of these and many more such activities explained earlier in this message series, achieve the purpose mentioned above. We then get back to our daily routine of thoughts and actions, with more freshness, which makes the routine more interesting.
On a spiritual level, to become silent, to be still in the ocean of hectic, noisy action is a choice many people are now making. When this is achieved, thisstillness acts on the mind like oxygen, giving the breath to both understand and enrich life. Of course, action is a necessity, an expression of ourselves through time, relationships and the roles we play. However, if we do not sometimes stop and take a breath of silence, then the mind begins to suffocate, thoughts speed like bullet trains and the brain feels as if it is in a pressure cooker. Emotions erupt and react like volcanoes, eyes become dizzy with mountains of information and the head feels like a rollercoaster. This is stress. The mind needs to come up for air, to leave the jungle of pressure, deadlines and speed and slow down and find the point of silence within. Also a daily dose of new and different spiritual knowledge at the start of the day does the work of newness and helps us rise above the monotony. It rekindles our creative spirit. Newness in our thoughts then flows into our feelings, beliefs, attitudes, personalities or natures, perceptions, actions, interactions, relationships, etc. bringing newness in all of them and removing the stagnancy of the regular routine. Also feeding spiritual knowledge to the mind benefits silence or meditation immensely, because meditation, which is not just a process of reducing the mind to a nil stage but the creation of positive, constructive thoughts to take the mind to a positive experience of peace and bliss, can then become an interesting, new and creative exercise each time one practices it. Spiritual knowledge is the foundation of good meditation or silence.
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