'Freedays' are the 'gather our thoughts' days; Q&As; a general review of the week so far…
There are days, sometimes weeks or even years, in life when we feel the whole world is against us. There is a sense that nothing goes right, that everything we touch turns to mud and our self esteem plummets. Everyone experiences this at some point or other.
The difference between people, though, is how they deal with these times. Some have a natural ability to stick their head out of the mud and see that the swamp only stretches so far and as long as they keep plodding along, they will rise above the slurry and nonsense sooner rather than later. Others surrender their power to the pull of the mud and sink ever deeper into it.
The lotus flower is the symbol given to Hinduism (and subsequently Buddhism) for hope. It sets the example of how beauty can develop even from the grimiest place. Its leaves have a resilience which makes water and muck run off them, no sticking. The bud of the flower reaches up through all the darkness, high into the air and opens to the light, showing a glory of colour and purity unimaginable in such surroundings. The symbolism is that, whatever our circumstances, we too can 'rise above'. We all have inner beauty and must never forget this. It matters not where we are and what is happening to us, if we have worked on our inner personality, we can remain beautiful and unaffected by it. Indeed, by showing this beauty, even the murk around us begins to glow.
What is more, the lotus plant, having not found better ground, adapted and utilised the circumstances of its position to ensure maximum potential gained. This is the request of Gurudev in the quote above. Yes, it got messy just now; but add that to the compost of life and churn it into something useful, enhancing your personality rather than twisting it.