दु:खेष्वनुद्विग्नमना: सुखेषु विगतस्पृह: |
वीतरागभयक्रोध: स्थितधीर्मुनिरुच्यते ||
Bhagvadgita Chapter 2, Verse 57
The literal translation of the above verse is,
One whose mind remains undisturbed amidst misery, who does not crave for pleasure, and who is free from attachment, fear, and anger, is called a sage of steady wisdom.
I always go back to these spiritual gems, whenever I feel low and depressed at any point of time in life. It takes a lot of courage for a person like me, who is an atheist and does not believe in the existence of God, to confess this.
But spiritualism goes beyond just believing in the concept of God. Spiritualism, in my opinion, is the power that helps us find the true form of ourselves.
In life, we face many challenging situations, feel depressed, lonely. That’s where spiritualism comes to your help. It calms you down, makes you relax. No, I’m not saying that reading religious scriptures make you happy. But their deep meaning does.
I know there are a lot of arguments among experts on the true form of religion and if we dig deeper many contradictions erupt. But that’s not the point. It’s all about taking help from these gems to help yourself build a better you.
Lord Buddha took meditation to the whole different level. He used it for his own betterment. It’s not required for you to read Vinay Pitaka or any Buddhist literature to learn Buddhism. Meditation helps you to look within you. Makes you stronger and prepares you for challenges. That’s the power of meditation. That’s the power of spiritualism.
In Christianity, Jesus always lived for others. According to popular belief, he requested God to forgive the people who were crucifying him. That’s the extreme form of kindness. Even if we can’t reach there, we should learn how to be kind towards people around us.
Believing in pure spiritualism teaches how to show empathy towards others. Empathy is a feeling which you get by assuming yourself in the other person’s place. Understanding that person’s sorrows and supporting him/her makes you a kind soul.
Prophet Muhammad’s history is filled with blood and violence. But he showed us how to love your dear ones. He loved his first wife Khadija. Unlike the most talked about and criticized culture of Islam, Monogamy, Prophet was always loyal to his first wife till her death.
Spiritualism teaches you how to be loyal and how to love others and yourself. Loving yourself is the most essential but critical part which one should master with excellence. It’s an art which a very few can learn. But spiritualism helps you in that. It allows you to focus on yourself.
Have you ever felt peaceful and calm after listening to devotional songs? Well, you are not alone. I felt weird that even though I am an atheist, those devotional songs always give a strange feeling of calmness. When I dig deeper into it, I found that it’s completely fine feeling peaceful after listening to these songs. They are actually made that way.
The true meaning of an atheist is to open his/her mind and not to keep it limited only to one belief. And when you tell that to yourself, you get the meaning of true spiritualism. Beyond God, beyond idol worshipping, beyond religions scriptures.
Today, whenever I listen to Jagjit Singh’s Hey Ram, I feel calm and relaxed. I enjoy it. I may not believe in the existence of Lord Rama, but that song helps me forget that and just focus on the inner me. And that is what matters.
This is spiritualism. To attain the power of it, you have to start looking differently towards religion. It’s essential especially for the youth, to break the shackles of all beliefs and build a new world that’s free from all extremisms. A world like a family, where different kinds of people live together. Just like the ancient thought, Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam—the whole world is one family.
Great philosopher, author, poet and, what not, Rabindranath Tagore greatly put this noble thought in one of his popular poems in which he says;
Where the mind is without fear
and the head is held high,
where knowledge is free.
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments by narrow domestic walls.
Where words come out from the depth of truth,
where tireless striving stretches its arms toward perfection.
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way
into the dreary desert sand of dead habit.
Where the mind is led forward by thee
into ever widening thought and action.
In to that heaven of freedom, my father,
LET MY COUNTRY AWAKE!
Tagore also put this thought into Indian National Anthem in which he has greatly weaved spiritualism into patriotism. Many thought he wrote it for King George V. But as he was Vaishnavite—the term for the followers of a Hindu God, Lord Vishnu—he came up with those lines by keeping his own God in mind.
That’s how spiritualism works. It helps you look towards things around you through a different perspective altogether. It fills your soul with amazing positivity and prepares you to become a person responsible to carry out bigger changes in society.
In a nutshell, be spiritual, not religious. That is what matters.