Children, the door of infinite possibilities is always wide open to mankind. Through that, man can travel great distances and claim the vast skies of knowledge and power.
Man has the capability to become whatever he chooses to be. He can choose to be a virtuous soul who only desires good for others in thought and deed. On the other hand, he can also choose to be a god or a demon. The freedom to choose what he wants to be is open to man. That is the greatest blessing and specialty of the human birth. But in order to experience this blessing to its fullest potential, man should have the innocence and faith of a child.
Man tends to blindly oppose and criticise anything that he cannot measure or evaluate with his intellect. Very often we forget that strong faith and innocent love can easily walk on planes that intellect and logic fail to tread. In fact, we can see how the power of innocence has been the driving force behind the groundbreaking discoveries of many famous scientists. Haven’t you seen the eyes of a child? A child views everything with wide-eyed wonder. In the same way, a true scientist also views this universe with wonder. This helps the scientist probe the deepest mysteries of the universe.
Very often, man tries to measure and evaluate life with intellectual reasoning and logic alone. We cannot reach the depths of knowledge and experience with this attitude. We should learn to approach life and life-experiences with love and faith. That is when life will reveal all its mysteries to us. Life is not just mathematics or science or philosophy. It is a mystery. To unravel this mystery, what is needed more than logic and reasoning is love, patience and faith. That is what spirituality teaches us.
Our society regards people who question everything as intellectuals. Amma remembers a story. In a village there lived a young man. Right from his childhood, everyone considered him a fool. No matter what he said or did, his father called him a fool. His mother and siblings would echo him. Hearing this, his neighbours and other villagers joined them. The poor man thought to himself, “I really must be a fool. Else, why would everyone call me so?” He tried hard to prove that he was intelligent and knowledgeable, to no avail. Soon he became depressed.
One day a Mahatma happened to visit the village. The young man revealed his distress to him. Comforting him, the Mahatma advised, “Don’t worry. Just do one thing—whenever anyone says anything, oppose it strongly. For example, if someone says, ‘Oh, look at this beautiful flower!’ just reply, ‘What? Who said this flower is beautiful? Can you prove that it is beautiful?’ Similarly, if someone talks about the greatness of love, immediately contradict him saying, ‘Love? What nonsense! What is the proof that love exists?’ In this way, contradict and criticise everything you hear. No one can prove everything. They will become fools themselves. And because you question everything, you will be regarded as a great intellectual.”
The young man agreed to follow the Mahatma’s instructions. Many years later, the Mahatma arrived back in the village. As soon as he got there, the villagers told him excitedly, “A great miracle took place after your last visit. A complete fool suddenly ascended into wisdom! He is a highly intelligent and astute chap now. It is unbelievable!” The Mahatma immediately realised who they were talking about. Shortly, the young man arrived to pay his respects to the Mahatma. He said, “What you said came true. These villagers regard me as a great intellectual now.” The Mahatma smiled and cautioned, “Yes, but don’t reveal the secret to anyone.”
Amma is not saying that you should reject or ignore logic and reasoning. Just don’t misunderstand it to be everything. Use logic and reasoning where it is needed. But in life, there will arise numerous situations where one has to converse with the heart. For this we should use the language of love, faith and patience.
The writer is a world renowned spiritual leader