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Get ‘high’ on Spirituality!

All of us have a soul (now proved by the noetic scientists) and a social role by virtue of having a body and hence being a part of society.

The soul is nothing but who we actually are without the embellishment that our body is, without our name, surname, religion, social relationships, worldly achievements.

And what we actually are, I repeat, is our ‘soul’ and not our ‘social role’. The moment this is realised, one gains entry into the deluxe membership of spirituality and has easy accessibility to get rid of all hurt, pain and anger that this mortal world might have to offer.
One may find it difficult to see where one stands without having all these frames of reference of body, name, religion, country and we have none but our society and the aculturisation we receive from the moment we are born to blame for this.
The child is taught everything ; from toilet habits to dining table etiquette, save about himself/herself. It is assumed probably that things such as ‘soul’ etc. would be too difficult for a child to understand. Never mind childhood, these things are not taught even in teenage when identity crisis, emotional turbulence, relationship problems and career issues all call for the healing touch of spirituality. For it is supposed to be reserved for those in their 60s and 70s, when there is not much to do in any case.

So who is to blame if a teen deals with his breakup by drinking like there is no tomorrow? Who is to blame if he takes drugs to hide his frustration over his parents’ divorce? Who is to blame if he commits suicide the day he is declared a ‘failure’ in some exam? Who is to blame if he doesn’t know that he could very well have drunk from the elixir of bliss that meditation showers? Who is to blame if he doesn’t know that establishing a connection with the supreme soul would have tranquilized him or given him a ‘high’, whichever he wished? Who is to blame if he doesn’t know that ending life is no solution, that the cycle of birth and death and hence the same problems will continue until he is ready to experience who he actually is?

And most often one can’t even blame the parents and teachers. Not everybody is lucky enough to be disillusioned out of the ignorance of taking our social role for our actual self, early enough. And even when they HAVE stumbled upon the truth, it is of very less use. Their children, no more children, are no more mouldable, having a mind of their own and they prefer to not learn any such thing from their parents and continue to make the journey with no knowledge of where they are headed, preferring to learn only after they themselves have fell down and are hurt.

The point I am trying to put across is that spirituality needs to be explored by the youth. Let it be studied and researched upon just like any other topic of fascination.

Let it not remain the exclusive property of the old and the sanyasis. And the society needs to wake up to all this. Let there be spirituality lessons in schools, in easy language and with a modern approach, let children be encouraged to take up meditation at an early age and let there be this healthy peer pressure to read spiritual stuff just like there is to listen to Eminem and read Stephanie Meyer or Agatha Christie.
One myth I would like to bust here is that spirituality calls for detachment and hence is not for a family person. This is absolute rubbish. One can wear the trendiest clothes, have the funkiest gadgets and be in a family and a job, yet be spiritual. A white sari or a saffron robe and leading a hermit’s life are not necessary.

Yes spirituality brings detachment. But not detachment from people, family, relationships. It brings detachment from pain of hurt and anger. It brings detachment from fear-of failure, of loss, of death. It brings harmony into all our relationships. It makes our head free of all clutter and makes us more fit than ever for success in our field of study.

Most importantly, it makes us happy. At the end of the day, whatever we run after is for happiness right? Isn’t it cool that instead of searching it outside, we just have to discover our true ‘identity’ and learn a few ‘truths’ regarding this world to be happy?
So to lead a holistic life, spirituality seems to be an indispensible tool, and not a threat! And yes, it is not boring either!
How about looking up ‘awakening with the Brahmakumaris’ in YouTube or picking up ‘Conversations with God’ from the bookstall?

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Capitation fee- A curse!!

Liberalisation of economy in India has generated more wealth and a never satiating consumerism. Unfortunately even education has fallen into the clutches of consumerism and the economics of demand and supply. The increasing menace of capitation fee has become prevalent at the time of admission. Though it can be said with a certain amount of authority that there is nobody who likes to willingly part with hefty amounts, yet the practice seems to flourish. Leaving aside a few reputed and established names, most of the newly-sprung up schools and institutes  are no better than “teaching shops”.

The other day i had to visit A.P.J  School for admission of my nephew to the KG class. I contacted the admission incharge of the school and i was shocked to learn that the admission test is merely a formality. The admission will be granted not based on the merit of the child but on the parents capacity to pay a fat capitation fee of Rs. 10,000 to 30,000.

To me, it seems nothing short of corruption to seek funds in the name of providing quality education. Isn’t it a shame that in a country where education was once free , it is now being sold and that too at a price. This system is a fraud system which exploits the parents and is being carried out shamelessly with impunity.

The government should not remain a mute spectator and must take stringent action against these dealers of education and lay down as well as enforce strict laws to curb this evil practice. Accepting donations or capitation fee in admission should be declared illegal and a cognizable offence. All sections of society including parents, teachers, students and educationists should come up in arms against this system and force the educational institutions to discontinue this evil practice forthwith.

Your Character is Unique

How can you identify a character?            Man himself is the central theme. He is the end more valuable than any possession in the universe. He must be salvaged, augmented and liberated in his own being.

So, what is character?                                                   Character is what a person truly is, and his reputation is what he is supposed to be. When character and reputation are the same that is the ideal state of being.

The Greek word for character means to engrava one’s mode of being in the world. History is made by character.

Character is defined as qualities or features by which a person or a thing is distinguished from another; the aggregate of distinguishing mental and moral qualities of an individual or a race as a whole; the stamp of an individuality impressed by nature, education or habit; that which person think really.

In opinion of Swami Vivekananda:

“What you want is character strengthening of the will. Continue to exercise your will and it will take you higher. This will is almighty. It is character that can cleave through adamantine walls of difficulties.”

Character is that ensemble of actualized qualities of the head and heart of an individual through the help of which he learns facts and forces of life in a creative manner and gradually reaches self-fulfilment in a way helpful to others as well.

The man of character develops upwards, the man without character slips downwards. The man of character makes history marred by history. Character holds the key to any riddle of life. It can break each and every vicious circle.

The family constituting the most basic social unit consisting of the trinity of father, mother and child, is the first training ground for the building of the child’s character.

Character-building depends much on what kind of food for its mind the parents supply to the growing child. Next to parents, come teacher’ influence in moulding the character of children.

Besides influences unknowingly, but surely exercised for good or bad on children by parents and teachers, there is the powerful influence of social environment. This influence can be creatively handled for character-building only through homes.