At every stage of life human beings all the time lived two lives… one by the Outer manifest physical self and other by our true inner self existing in our heart as soul atman. Existence of one or other could not be ruled out… both were true in entirety. If Adi Shankaracharya says, except God Almighty (Brahman Hinduism) nothing exists in cosmos… he was also right. For other than world of souls’ atmans… nothing else existed in cosmos. Everything was an act of Maya (veil of illusion) because of which the present physical world appeared as real.
As per God, as per spirituality… the vice versa was true and the only fact of life. Other than God (Brahman) nothing truly existed in cosmos. This can be proved from the analogy of robotics.
At a certain stage of life if artificial intelligence takes over, then could we ever say that the robot driven by artificial intelligence was the only truth of life! In the world of robotics, from the viewpoint of robot (artificial intelligence)… the robot was an entity, presence of which could never be denied. It also acts life like but still, it was something artificially created by mankind and mankind was the only truth of life… not the world of robots, artificial intelligence.
By no means artificial intelligence, robots could create life but the vice versa was true. Mankind could create robots, artificial intelligence at any stage of life.
Similarly, souls’ atmans were the absolute truth of cosmic life… the absolute masters and controllers of mankind. It is soul atman that manifests human body to work out its karma, remove dross impurities within. Only when perceived from physical senses point of view, the physical world became a reality… from cosmic point of view, everything physical was mere gaseous formation… clusters of atoms and molecules.
The more we indulge in sacred texts of Hinduism namely Bhagavad Gita and Upanishads (independent treatises)… this absolute reality of life becomes crystal clear.
Talking about religion… the word religion evolved from the root word religare which means… to bond. For the physical manifest form, the human beings to live collectively… religion evolved. In absence of religion… moral and ethical values… life of human beings would be equivalent to that of animals. To keep the flock of human beings bonded together meaningfully… religion came into being. This does not mean religion helps one in reaching God, reaching stage of enlightenment.
If our Goal of Life was Spiritual… must we indulge in Religion
Not necessarily! From six years of age I have not preferred going to a temple, church or mosque. These religious holy centres keep flock of human beings bonded together morally and ethically but never lead mankind towards God. For gaining enlightenment, reaching stage of self realization, god realization… gaining Mukti (liberation from cycle of birth and death forever)… our indulgence in spirituality was mandated by God.
By remaining away from places of pilgrimages… temples churches and mosques… my journey towards God was never retarded in any way. Rather I was more comfortable when I avoided going to these holy places. Instead I indulged in chintan (contemplation) to reach the true inner self existing within us in our heart as soul atman. Whenever my mother insisted upon me going to Jain temples… I never refused her but within myself… I was concentrated on my inner self all the time.
Religion primarily means indulging in rituals that carried no meaning on path of pure spirituality. As journey of spirituality is always indulged within… rituals become meaningless.
If Spirituality is the ultimate essence of life… why masses indulged in religious practices
Journey of spirituality demands highest level of patience, persistence and perseverance that could ever be practiced by humankind. For masses it is beyond comprehension to practice everything that was followed by Swami Vivekananda. Unless one becomes a Swami Vivekananda in real life, one could not practice spirituality seriously and sincerely. Just to appease our ego (Aham Hinduism), just to satisfy our own curiosity, the elders in the family… the society… masses indulged in religious practices (rituals) that were primarily a pastime from angle of God.
To reach God, God Almighty ordained a long journey of 1.1 million manifestations in human form. To accomplish the same in a single lifetime of 70 to 80 years of earthly life… was totally incomprehensible to the masses. Only serious seekers of God indulged in spiritual practices of the highest order… the common man, masses following the religious route. Living under pretence in present times of Kali Yuga (Dark Age… metal age) has become order of the day. Not only in India but people world over indulged in religious practices calling it spiritual all the time.
Result… all such human beings would return again and again on mother earth (Samsara… worldly life) after death of present mortal body. This migration and emigration into worldly life continues until human beings reached 8.4 millionth manifestation… last in cosmic life cycle.
Spiritual life definitely is demanding. There was nothing nobler or more pure than indulging in spirituality to reach God in our lifetime.
The biggest factor responsible for human beings indulging in religion rather than spirituality was law of karma. To practice spirituality of the highest order… we need negating karma to zero. Karma has to be burnt in totality and this becomes possible when we succeed establishing total control over five senses and mind.
In family life, to a worldly person… such requirements of spiritual path almost seemed impossible. Escaping clutches of Moha (extreme emotional attachment) practically seemed impossible. Taking the shallow route, masses indulged in religious practices… something not of their making! Unless we had absolute willpower… we just could not follow path taken by Swami Vivekananda. To a normal human being… where was the hurry, when God Almighty himself ordained 1.1 million manifestations in human form to reach stage of enlightenment… Mukti (liberation from cycle of birth and death)!
Spirituality and Law of Karma
For human beings to travel spiritual path successfully… our understanding law of karma in entirety was necessitated. Law of karma simply states… what we sow, so shall we reap… nothing less or more. In the domain of God there never were free lunches. By establishing control over five senses and mind… we have to burn our karma in totality. There was absolutely no escape from this spiritual fact of life.
Overwhelmed by five senses, the overpowering sensual instinct… human beings kept prolonging their inner urge to indulge in spirituality. Even though we are prompted from within by our soul atman to follow path of spirituality to reach cosmic end of life, become a pure soul atman… we keep delaying the same on one pretext or another. This is normal human tendency found world over. We do not want to indulge with our true inner self… soul atman existing in our heart.
If we try to understand law of karma as detailed in sacred texts of Hinduism… we would realize that in its cosmic sojourn… the soul atman got mired in impurities. To cleanse self of dross impurities within… every soul atman starts its cosmic journey. Initially every soul atman manifest form of amoeba (single cell formation), evolving to multi-cell formation… then insect life, plant life, animal life and finally manifesting the human form.
Law of karma gets necessitated as it is only through indulgence in karma, a soul atman could cleanse self of dross impurities within. Indulgence in karma was a continuous ongoing process. Even if we do not indulge in physical work… karma is all the time enacted. Every single thought precipitates into an act of karma. Physically we may appear idle, but on the cosmic scale… we were all the time indulging in karma.
To overpower karma, we have to indulge in karma… good karma, positive karma all the time. Indulging in karma with an unattached attitude is what karma all about. Nishkama karma yoga simply means… indulging in karma with an unattached attitude… never going after fruits of karma performed. A spiritual traveler indulges in karma only for the sake of it, but never runs after fruits of karma performed.
Cutting across bondages in life is essence of karma. For a true spiritual traveler… all earthly bondages, family and social ties are finally left behind. To a spiritual seeker like Swami Vivekananda… the whole world becomes one large family. Indulging in welfare of all, all the time, working for mankind at large all the time is what nishkama karma yoga all about. We just could not pursue personal enlightenment to reach stage of enlightenment.
Unless we worked for welfare of mankind all the time… stage of enlightenment cannot be reached. Mahavira, Gautama Buddha, Jesus Christ and Prophet Mohammed did so all the time and so did Sri Ramakrishna Paramhansa, Maharishi Ramana and finally Swami Vivekananda.
Law of karma is the most grossly misunderstood precept of spirituality world over. To a serious and sincere spiritual traveler, law of karma is not difficult to understand. We truly need working for mankind all the time nay for all forms of life… as we simply could not distinguish between one form of life and another. Compassion is ingrained into life of a spiritual traveler.
Simply as we do not shun a student of class one after we reached class 12… As a human being also we just could not reject lower forms of life like animals, plants and insects… if our goal of life was truly spiritual.
By: Vijay Kumar “Atma Jnani”… The Man who Realized God in 1993 – (Ref. 171207)
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