Don’t let your possessions possess you

We are living in the age of stuff ,we have never owned so many things ,houses have doubled in size in the last forty years to hold all this stuff even our refrigerator have become bigger and bigger ,yet on the crest of this wave of gathering more and more possessions ,there is increases sadness.and with unprecedented  stimulation around us there is boredom .we are at cultural moment where noise and agitation are everywhere .millions are drinking and smoking their lives away and watching television until they become mindless automation totally controlled by illusory pleasures .

The presence of mind boggling variety practically of everything drowns us in utter confusion ,even to choose a basic necessity as soap or toothpaste  people spend half an hour .on one hand we spend so much time choosing the basic commodities and on other hand we hardly have time to think about the most precious  commodity given to us by almighty ,the human form of life .we are so preoccupied with things that we don’t have time for  people and for  our true self.for practically everything right from shaving ,brushing your teeth to washing your clothes ,we  have gadgets.

Now let me take you a decade back ,when people use to live in joint families ,every ceremony in home  all relatives use to assemble with their children ,every festival was celebration ,loving exchanges .now family gatherings has been a thing of past ,joint families have erupted into nuclear families and now even solitary nucleons are orbiting aimlessly .

We are living in an age where we have more information but less common sense ,wide road but narrow hearts ,fast food slow to digest ,it seems we are lacking something .undoubtedly we have surpassed all our ancestors in technological advancement ,but  bcoz of this unidimesnsional obsession we have also created large spiritual vacuum in heart of civilization .

Attitude of gratitude

Yesterday suddenly heavy rains poured down ,water suddenly entered our rooms ,by the time I got up my luggage ,bathing gears ,clothes everything was floating ,my sleepers have traversed far off ,I was frustrated with the whole event .

Then I pondered ,when things go in usual way we have the tendency to take things for granted ,become oblivious of the magnificent gifts of god .if we have a close look at the vedic culture – we will find Vedic culture is interwoven with gratefulness even Krishna himself felt so indebted towards the cowherd damsels of vraja that he said “I don’t have anything to repay you”. One more stunning instance comes when Mother Rukmini sent a brahmana for delivering the first ever love letter in the history than when brahaman returned after finishing the task, mother Rukmini had nothing to give him so she paid obeisances.

Vedic culture means to give ,culture of charity – in vedic times it was food ,education everything was offered free but now they are the two biggest money making industries. Somewhere we have to begin this habit of giving, Once one beggar use to go for begging daily to a particular house so lady got frustrated ,one day when the beggar came at the door – she brought one cup of ash and gave him and he said thank you ,lady said what I am giving you ash and you are saying thank you , he said yes ,at least you have begun the process ,today you are giving ash tomm you will give cash .

So let us not get depressed by unhealthy comparisons with others ,appreciate what god has given us and share that with others .

Gratitude for the present by having more appreciation for the past

It is easy to take so much for granted – even life itself ,normally when we have the opportunities ,facilities or experiences . we can easily fail to appreciate them fully however when we no longer have them we are often forced to reflect more on what we had in the best .

In college students ponder over bygone school days ,how there was no anxiety of job ,sports and picnics , loving and intimate school friends , parental affection of teachers now the perversion have engulfed every relation ,anxiety and cut throat competition for jobs have consumed the joy of freedom of college life .in this situation I can become very angry ,sad and depressed or I become more attentive ,appreciative and full of gratitude .i can relive and recapture those beautiful moments ,feeling grateful for what was available in the past .

I had been lonely in the past but then I met my life partner , I thought she will make me happy and totally satisfied ,I was sure that she would make this important miracle happen in my life ,the problem was however she was expecting the same from me,but ultimately I got disappointment and frustration because neither was ready to accommodate the needs of other and each expected the other to facilitate personal needs .i can be thoroughly frustrated with the situation or see it as an arrangement of Krishna . it is a famous dictum “ if God likes you ,he gives you everything but if he loves you ,he takes everything away “special mercy often comes in the form of tough love .when written in Chinese the word “crisis” is composed of 2 characters one represents danger and other represents opportunity .

I invested in the best of companies share ,toiled hard day and night to climb the career ladder ,served loyally my superiors and bosses to earn their trust but all plans seems to be aborted ,expenditures are increasing exponentially and though the income is increasing but still not suffice ,I can keep worrying about augmenting my bank balance or take upto simplified version of life and be grateful and appreciative of the gifts of god in our daily lives . Chanakya Pandit rightly says  “who is rich ,not the one who has more possessions but one who has less wants “ .

I have 2 children ,one doing MS from Arizona state university other one pursuing   graduation from IIT , once a year they manage to visit home with great difficulty ,they have no plans to settle in India ,I can feel dejected ,or become grateful to god for showing me the real face of world ,I can more desperately take shelter of my original father ,eternal father . It is said in Bhagvad Gita that  Krishna is “suhrdam sarvabhutanam” well wisher of every living entity even if the whole world misunderstand us Krishna will never misunderstand us .

I get sick ,I have difficulty eating or sleeping or some chronic disease takes over ,I can reflect on how fortunate and wonderful those experiences were when I was able to eat sumptuously and how pleasant it was to have nights of deep ,restful ,peaceful sleep and extreme inconvenience and pain created by present situations can spark much more appreciation for the many years I had in the past without illness.

I have entered into the last phase of my life ,very soon this drama of material life will finish .i am alone all relatives and even my own children have banished me ,I am like a trash can in one corner of house many are thinking in their minds when they will be relieved of me ,I can be depressed and keep on passing my days just waiting for the final transition ,or I can die before die ,give up my false egoistic identity and live as eternal servant of Krishna ,death forces us to look for what is essential .philosophy means to keep death in front of our eyes .there are 2 kinds of deaths –one the death of false ego and other is death the death of coat – the material body .if one has overcome the false ego ,the much feared physical death looses its horrors.

For a fully god conscious person there is nothing to fear ,since with death he is moving from one hand of god to other .

Note: This might be your story.