Yesterday was Diwali festival. Indian people celebrate this festival every year. This is also called a festival of light. People lit lights in their home last night. They were inviting goddess Laksmi for wealth. That’s what I heard from my Indian friend.
I am interested in understanding the spiritual meaning of any festival. Why light? What is the significance behind it? The form of a soul is light. A soul is remembered as a very tiny point of light. It is behind our two physical eyes. Some call it as the third eye or the divine eye. Why divine? It is to see the truth. To see means to understand. A soul has intellect to understand everything. When the intellect is open, it is said to be enlightened. But when the intellect is closed, it said to be ignorant. We can not see the soul with our physical eyes, but have you ever meet someone who is ‘shining’ very brightly? You can see a beautiful light from her eyes. Very pure. We are not talking about physical light, this is spiritual light. The soul can feel this light.
Diwali is remembered as a festival to lit the light of the soul. Become a light for the world.
I have received this greeting from a friend, David who has been staying in India for the last 25 years. He is an artist and also a musician. He said to me that he was celebrating Diwali this year in a more quiet way (because of the lockdown). He enjoyed the solitude and the silence. In fact the soul needs solitude and silence to be enlightened.
Listen to the noise in your head. There is a constant noise, or there is no noise at all? Can you silence your mind? Many people said it is very difficult to silence their minds. The mind is constantly busy. Thinking. It creates noise inside your head. But who is speaking? There are two personalities in your head – the false personality and the true personality. The false personality is called the ego and the true personality is called the conscience. They speak different languages to you. It is the ego that speaks more and creates noise. When the ego is speaking too much, you become restless. The ego brings confusion and doubt into your head. You need clarity. Clarity is found in a silent mind.
You might need to learn to make the ego become more quiet, if you want to experience a silent mind. It is only when there is silence in the mind then the voice of the conscience is heard. The conscience is your inner guide. Let your conscience guide you. Listen to your inner guide. It finishes confusion and doubt. It brings clarity into your head.
In understanding the self, we need to know the two aspects of human being; physical and non-physical. It is very easy to understand the physical aspect, the body. But it is more difficult to understand the non-physical one. The non-physical one in fact refers to the spirit, the energy. The nature of the physical one is not permanent, it can change. Our bodies change from young to old. It definitely will die. But the spirit (energy) is permanent, it doesn’t change. It will never die. To understand the self is to understand and accept the self as a spirit, not a body. The spirit is the soul. A soul has three faculties – mind, intellect and heart. This idea is very clear and also very simple, but many have made this so complicated and the journey to understand the self becomes a never ending journey.
When someone said to me : “I do not believe in soul.” In fact I would like to ask him : “Do you not believe in yourself either?” But I held myself and didn’t say anything.
I think he just did not really understand this two aspects of human being. Because he did not understand so he didn’t accept it, and he did not believe it. The next question is “Who am I?” I think the first step to understand the self is to have a clear answer to this question.
Ego is the enemy of everyone. It resides in each and every of us. We have to conquer this enemy. How to conquer it? We have to know it. Only when we know this enemy well, then we can conquer it.
Ego has two faces – the inferior I and the superior I.
When you hear the voice of “I am excluded” , “I am not valued”, “They don’t respect me“, “I am a victim”. This is the voice of the inferior I. Can you hear this voice? How often do you hear this voice? This is the voice that brings you down again and again. If you keep listening to this voice, you will become weak. You keep listening to this voice and then you start believing in it. What you believe will become your reality (what you feel). You start feeling isolated, small or weak. Can you stop this voice? Do not let this voice keep echoing in your head. You need power to stop it. This is the power of the soul that you need. Develop this power, so you will become victorious in your internal battle. You are in fact battling with yourself (your ego). Your enemy is not out there, but right here, inside you.
At other time you might also hear the voice “I know better”, “I am more experienced”, “They should listen to me”, this is the voice of the superior I.
Both are the ego. Both are false. Both make you fluctuate internally. The real you is not inferior nor superior. Nothing can pull you down. Remain seated on the seat of the real I. This is the seat of self respect. If you remain seated on this seat, you will experience yourself to be a master. A master of the self. You are the king. You are royal.
You are your best friend and also your worst enemy.
There are two personalities inside us. The true ’I’ and the false ’I’. They are two different personalities. They are not silent. They keep speaking. Do you hear them speaking? The false ’I’ speaks louder than the true ’I’. You can easily hear it. It creates noise in your head. It speaks worries, uncertainties and doubts. The false ‘I’ creates fear and peacelessness. If you do not control it, it will create chaos in your mind. So you need to control it and make it quiet.
The true ’I’ speaks very gently and softly. Sometimes it is almost unheard. It speaks wisdom and truth. It creates calmness in your mind. If you want to experience peace of mind, you need to listen to the true ‘I’ more often. This is the first step to a peace of mind.
So which one is your best friend and which one is your worst enemy?
My friend who is from Suriname only moved to this city last year. She said to me that she only heard the noise of the traffic from her apartment where she lives in. She never heard birds chirping. Many birds might have moved away from the city. In fact, we do not live really far from each other. I said to her that every morning I still could enjoy birds chirping from the roof top. She might just not be aware of it. The next morning she texted to me excitedly that she heard rooster making a morning wake up call. She was so amazed and asked herself if it was always doing it everyday, but she just didn’t hear it. Because the awareness was not there, so the rooster didn’t seem to exist to her.
She wrote this: “I am just having a break from my work and sitting on my sofa and I hear birds chirping. So sweet.”
This covid-19 has brought new awarness in many of us. Being more aware of what is around us including what is in the nature. Everything might be the same, but because there is no awarness, they do not seem to exist to us. They are too small compared to our focus in our day-to-day life. We miss to enjoy and appreciate their existence. To be mindful is to be aware. Being aware is being in the now.
What do you learn from this coronavirus outbreak? If you are infected by this virus, I am sure that you learn a lot while you are going through your medication and treatment. Whether we are infected or not, we have to deal with our fear and worries caused by this virus. The virus is very tiny and invisible yet it scares everyone. It has creates worries and fear in everyone.
It definitely teaches us something. We might have to make a shift in our life, in physical level, mental level or spiritual level. We might realise some truth. Coronavirus might have become our teacher, the hardest one. We are all students. This might be one of the hardest lessons these days. Noone can escape from this lesson. You need to pay a full attention to the teacher. Listen to the teacher very well. Undertsand what the teacher is trying to teach. Don’t be afraid while taking the lesson. Be alert but don’t be afraid. Stay calm.
Someone shared to me a really good piece below. We do not know who has written it.
We fell asleep in one world and woke up in another.
Suddenly Disney is out of magic,
Paris is no longer romantic,
New York doesn’t stand up anymore,
the Chinese wall is longer a fortress,
and Mecca is empty.
Hugs & kisses suddenly become weapons,
and not visiting parents & friends becomes an act of love.
Suddenly you realize that power, beauty & money are worthless,
and can’t get you oxygen you’re fighting for.
The world continues its life and it is beautiful.
It only puts humans in cages.
I think it’s sending us a message: “You are not necessary.
The air, earth, water and sky without you are fine.
When you come back, remember that you are my guests. Not my masters.”
A Japanese friend sent me a picture of Sakura blossom he took from his place last week. Another friend sent me a picture of the blue sky she took from the backyard of her house. The other evening I enjoyed the moon shining in the clear sky from a roof top. Very high. Very quiet. This morning I still could hear the birds singing. Nothing changes in the universe. Everything remains the same. What we might need to do is to pause for a moment, see around and listen. We might have become too busy and forgoten to stop and reflect what the universe tries to show us. We might forget to realize that we are here for a temporary period, that we will go back. It might be not very long from now.
During these days we are exposed with information on coronavirus so much. It has created so much fear in people. We are not only fighting the coronavirus but also the fear in each one of us. Coronavirus infects the body and fear infects the soul. We and the world are now fighting against the coronavirus, but each one of us is fighting against the internal virus in the soul. We are strongly requested to stay clean – to wash our hands often and to put on mask to protect ourself from this virus.
But how to protect the soul from the fear? The body has its immune system to fight any virus or bacteria in the body. We are suggested to eat healthy food and have enough good sleep for keeping the immune of the body. The soul also has its immune system to fight against the fear. Good thoughts are the best nutrition for the soul. Have enough good thoughts during the day. Nurture your mind with high quality thoughts. Don’t let any mundane and ordinary thoughts take space in your mind. The mind is the laboratory to invent the anti vaccine for the virus. Really make time to stay introverted and work in your inner laboratory. Invent your own vaccine. Don’t forget to keep your laboratory very clean.
How much do you have to do this during these days and many days ahead? The world needs this so much.
You might have heard an advice not to see the defect but see the speciality of everyone. To see mean to observe or to put your attention and energy to the object of your observation. Attention is the energy of the mind. Energy in us is limited. So we have to be careful in using it. Don’t waste the energy. Use it in a worth while way. To see the defect in others is to drain the energy. Usually after seeing, then followed by thinking and talking and reacting. In the form of thought, words and then action. In this three forms we are using our energy.
Very recently I was in a short course on productivity. It covered how to become productive with our time, attention, decision and energy. The facilitator was delivering the topic really well. For me to be a good facilitator is when he or she enables the participants to understand the topic being delivered easily. To make something complicated easier to be understood. Something theoritical practical. After the session I came up to him to give him a compliment. I said “You are such a passionate trainer.” This words are words of appreciation. When you give a compliment from your heart in fact you are giving very positive energy. Make it a habit. See the goodness in others and let them know. This will empower others. You never know how much your words will impact on that person positively. Always believe that whatever you are doing good will come back to you. Keep doing it to everyone around you. Keep empowering.