Each 'Choose-day' we will investigate the process by which we can reassess our activity and interaction with the world of plurality and become more congruent within our personality.
KINDLE LIFE. We continue exploring points raised by HH Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda-ji in the publication of this name. Remember, you can purchase, (very economically!), the book from Chinmaya Mission Publications or if you prefer, the Amazon Link. Thus you can read Gurudev's words directly and bring your own voice to the discussion.
"Self-redemption must come, ultimately, from ourselves. The external props such as temples, idols and gurus are all encouragements and aids. They must be intelligently used to help build up inner perfection." (Gurudev on why we require the trappings of 'religion', but also the need to keep perspective.
Chapter Twelve brings us to THE PLAY OF MIND. It could be easy to classify 'religion' as superstitious nonsense, filled with ritualistic mannerisms and regulations which stifle 'life'. To see it thus is a shallow assessment. Certainly many institutions have used ritual and injunction as a method of guidance to the point where, sometimes, the purpose of it all gets lost and spiritually they become hollow. Religion, however, is not the name of the establishment which seeks to indoctrinate and create walls; true religion knows no boundaries and provides techniques for practical living; all faiths do have the same basic 'science of life' and philosophy of unity, when we are prepared to excavate beneath the surface.
We have established that 'life' is defined as a series of experiences. We saw the three-part nature of 'experience'. It was noted that the experiencer reacts to experiencing according to the make-up of the mind and intellect. Every one of us can experience the same event or object in an almost infinite number of ways due to the variance of our personality.
This accounts for the incredible texture of cultural, societal and psychological responses we find in the world. One person can see the world as green, whilst another has a rosy tint; yet another considers it blue and others can only ever experience the world through a haze of grey.
What is interesting about this, however, is that these outlooks are open to change. That also, to varying degrees, certainly; but nonetheless, it is possible to bring the whole spectrum of the world into alignment so that all is pure and bright white light. This is what the Rsis found to be true and passed on as request of their fellow humans; reconstruct the equipment which perceives, those inner instruments of mind and intellect, and discover the world anew. If it could be said that they had a slogan, it would be "Master the mind and you master the world!"
We find, however, that despite the possibilities of this concept, majority folk are inclined to try and change the external world first. Seeking softer environments, 'prettifying' and adding or subtracting elements continuously. Our entire society now works on this premise; whole economies require an avaricious population, impatient for more and more 'stuff' to drive them; politicians depend on dissatisfaction of the population in order to gratify their own need for power; many scientific arenas, whilst essentially noble, get lost in lust for lucre. Be clear about this. Due to the cumbersome nature of population, we do require these things, but a problem arises when the will of the people is generally less than noble, for in the end, the number- crunchers, the rulers and the providers sacrifice their values in order to service that voracious animal, "The People".
From this arises the concept, in the spiritual view, that we must "become the change we wish to see in the world" (Mahatma Gandhi). All spiritual texts, kept in correct context, advocate self-development and promote the fundamental values common to the whole population of the Earth. Central to these values are what is called in Sanskrit, ब्रह्मचार्य/brahmachaarya (self-control), अहिंसा/ahimsaa (non-injury) and सत्यं/satyam (truthfulness).