BANGALORE: There are many ways to find a spiritual connection. You can find it in a concert, in a cinema hall, at a bus stop, at an animal shelter, in a book, in rain, in your mother’s cooking, in a phrase painted behind an auto, in a dream, in serendipity, in a child’s laughter, a kitten’s purr, in forgiving someone, in being forgiven.
Every bit of our experience of life, of the world, of relationships, of silence and music and dance and creative upsurges is a path to a higher self. Towards a moment when you recognise yourself as your best self, at home in the universe and at peace with life. A moment when you are the bigger person than the one who would have reacted to a slight, to a traffic jam, to a nasty message, to the absence of rewards. The work of spirit does not begin and end with religion, rituals and prayer. It never ends. Every thought, word and action either adds to our spiritual richness or takes away from it.
How we work, talk, cook, manage little and big irritants makes us who we are and reveals if we are in touch with the best or the worst aspect of ourselves.
The witness is not out there but within us and this witness tell us if we have been good, bad or indifferent towards the business of living.
Sometimes, creative spirits are more in touch with the divine than hectoring preachers. You can see divinity in Jackson Pollock’s scintillating explosions of colours mirroring the cosmos. In Antoni Gaudi’s Sagrada Família. In Frank Llyod Wright’s iconic home Fallingwater. That music can do far more than most religious texts can was proven in 1985, when USA for Africa (United Support of Artists for Africa) raised almost $100 million for Africa. These are the real spiritual miracles that the world needs.
When Ang Lee visualised Yann Martel’s Life Of Pi, he gave us a few lessons in spirituality. He showed us that..
Religion is a just a life jacket. But in a storm you need more. Not all storms come to destroy. Not all islands offer refuge. God is not a ritual. Evil is not outside. The terrors we see around us, often begin within. Even when we are adrift, we are getting somewhere. A story is just that. A story till we believe it. Reality is often or maybe always what we make of it. We can’t make sense of the ocean. We can only hold on to our boats through moonlit nights and storms and infinite loneliness and sudden showers of abundance. Anger and fear are beasts that must be tamed or they will tame you. It is important to know the little... one can know but also that we cannot know even ourselves completely. That it is important to conclude stories and to say thank you and goodbye. But that sometimes...we may have to live with the unsaid. Possibly forever...Suffering does not have to mean anything and it passes. Not everything makes sense or has to. Sometimes the story is not finished and it is enough that we lived it in its unfinished continuum
And though we may just be little boats on the oceans of eternity we count, we belong. And sometimes all we can do is to surrender and to say to ourselves..
“And above all...don’t lose hope.”