We might have heard this from people from abroad visiting India and sometimes Indians themselves who revisit their homeland—“Oh India is so dirty!” “There is so much corruption and pollution!” The negativities seem high on the scales of perception. Is change possible? If yes who should bell the cat? None else than you says a Chinmaya Mission Initiative that seeks to transform Indians to transform India.
The three-year project, which culminates with the birth centenary of its founder Swami Chinmayananda —a freedom-fighter-turned-sanyasi with a vision to transform individuals—in May 2016, began with the release of a comprehensive book last year. The effort of the mission’s All India Chinmaya Yuva Kendra draws its inspiration from Swami Chinmayananda’s words “Through individual perfection alone world perfection can be aspired.”
The seven levels of transformation is based on the Chinmaya Vision Programme for educating the individual holistically. The book has stories, anecdotes and statistical data with exercises and tips to help us individually transform ourselves physically, emotionally, intellectually, patriotically, spiritually, culturally and alter our world perspective.
While one lakh participants registered for a national-level quiz conducted last year, this year seminars are conducted around the country to bring in awareness on the need for individual transformation in all these layers of our personality.
The section on patriotic transformation enlightens us about the glory of India calling to the modern Indian to first appreciate its greatness and imbibe its core values. Whereas, physical transformation tells us to compulsorily wake up from our slumber—exercise, be fit, be hygienic personally, watch our food intake and take regular medical tests.
Emotional transformation teaches us to respond to stimuli, not immediately react as animals do, but take a pause, think and then respond. This helps to master our emotions and experience peace of mind.
Intellectual transformation says confusion is born of action devoid of vision and vision minus action is sheer imagination. Transformation is caused by vision plus action. It works on developing our discrimination, perseverance, concentration, enquiry and decision-making.
Cultural transformation is an immensely engrossing subject that helps to root to this ancient culture which has withstood the tests of time, invasions and upheavals.
Spiritual transformation tells us how to arrive at the right understanding of who we are so that we do not waste a lifetime caught in the wrong concepts of reality. Finally giving an outlook of one universe, the global perspective of every Indian will be altered and you understand how connected we are—where a butterfly flaps its wings in Mexico, there is a cyclone in China.
Even as the book is helpful to individually work on our own transformation, the sponsored workshops help us study ourselves better and reflect on how we can help ourselves to be the change we wish to see. (www.transformingindians.org)
—Swahilya Shambhavi (www.swahilya.blogspot.in)