Saturday, October 24, 2015

Memories

Master, a woman asked, why do we cry when someone dear dies?
For our own loss; not for the deceased or death. Master replied. Perhaps you lost your sources of income and sustenance, or your status, or your safety and security, or your support, your emotional balance, etc. While the one that died has no such feeling of loss or suffering.
Shouldn’t we be sad or suffer the loss of our loved ones? She asked again.
Not necessarily though you could, after all it’s your life and choice; you may bereave if you wish to and find it easy to cope up with your loss. You have to think what did you really lose when someone dies and what had you gained while that person was alive. Everything eventually are memories; the one who lived and is now dead. All that you had loved about the deceased or did with him or her or whatever made it all so lovely are nothing but memories even when the person was alive, and now that the person is dead all those memories are still nothing but memories. Only difference is that now you know that the memories would never be re-enacted in this life anymore so you grieve about the unforeseen future while you let go off all the memories that you two had created and lived. Every day each moment we create memories, some bad, some good, some happy, some sad, some funny some not so funny, some amuse us, some make us cry; yet to live you must keep creating memories and it is actually up to us to make the memories the way we want to remember and be remembered.


Death is nothing my friends, it is only another side of life. Both are good, both are necessary, both are temporary, both are memories. We love life since it is limited and we fear death since it is inevitable and something that we think will end it all. Now nothing that doesn’t end can ever begin. Be calm and happy and grateful in life as grateful and calm and happy in death. As while the person lived and now while dead, the memories are still with you, within you, around you, for you, as long as you want. Death is only an end to physicality but in living too the physicality is impermanent. We rely too much on our visual and touching senses and little on our subliminal ones. No one actually dies, they continue to live as long as we cherish and nurture the memories, just like in living. 

Act of Goodness

People often asked the Master, how he became the Master as we knew him; but he never revealed anything about his past. But one day he agreed to tell us a story from his younger days, when he was looking for the path.

I was a restless young man, Master started, wandering through the world, wondering about things not necessary to wonder. I was Shaolin Kung fu champion and full of self confidence and pride, yet to learn humility and righteousness that my Masters preached.

One day in a far away land, a man wielding knife cornered me in a dark night. He looked rough and big and strong and the knife in his hand wicked. Yet to me he was like a child, playing with a toy. I could disarm him and kill him and at least five more like him in less than a minute. Give me all your money, the man cried spitting venom. I smiled and looked at him with pity and humour.

Give me all your money or I will kill you. He cried again. I found the entire situation comical and was undecided what I should do, when suddenly the true teaching of Shaolin came to my rescue.

Put that knife away my friend, I said, you don’t have to threaten me. You could get really hurt with that thing. Instead tell me how much money you really need.

Don’t waste my time, give me all your money, or I will strike you. The man said.

Do you believe in god? Any god! I asked.

The man suddenly stopped, realising that I wasn’t really afraid of him and he might have noticed my outlandish dress and shaven head. He stammered and stuttered, he lowered the knife a little, I don’t know who you are but yes I do believe in Christ. I am Catholic.

Then let me help you out my friend, I  said to him, tell me how much money you need and I will give you, so you don’t have to rob me therefore you will be saved from committing a sin and by giving you money I will gain some good from my god. Both of us will benefit from this transaction. Don’t you think so!


I emptied my pocket save a little that I needed to eat something for the night and handed over the rest to the man who was now crying and shivering. I hugged him and blessed him and wished him to heal. 

Love is Love

Master, a young man asked once, how can I win a girl’s heart whom I love so much that I am willing to die for her love; yet she doesn’t understand me.

I will tell you a story. Master said. We all gathered around the fire since it was a cold evening upon the mountain.

In a time when men ruled more by power than prudence there lived a fierce warrior princess, her beauty like fire and courage like the sun. Men desired her yet no one could match to be her equal. One day a valiant prince from the mountains came to her door, defeating every challenger on his way. He walked up to the throne of the princess and said: I am here to win your heart, princess.
He was full of ego and confident of his prowess.
Are you ready to lose yours? Princess asked smiling.
Yes of course my fair lady.
Is it my love you want or heart? Willy princess said.
Love; prince replied now becoming more confident of his victory.
Then you are on the wrong path Prince, the princess said, for love is neither a conquest nor a defeat, nor a victory neither a submission. You don’t need to lose anything to gain love. Neither do you need to win anything if love decides to abandon. It is not about winning or losing, it is all about sharing and becoming a bigger repository of love.
The prince, though egoistic was willing to learn. He understood he won’t get the princess this way, so he said: then what should I do to share our hearts and love?
Go and find your heart and love, the one that is self-fulfilled and self-satisfactory and needs nothing more to exist and nourish. Then return to me and we will become one.

Master paused to drink some water. The young man, now restless, asked: did they become one?

They were always one my friend; Master replied, for the princess was the Moon and the prince was her silver radiance. Your true love already resides within and that is self-love, the day you find and cherish that, so will the girl you wish to be one with. Love would not accept you till you are ready to love for the sake of love and nothing more. 

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Friendly Thieves

One day as I was accompanying the Master for his morning walk, one of his disciples came running out of breath. He looked highly agitated and distressed.

Master, please help me, I have been robbed. Thieves entered my house last night, while I had gone to visit my wife’s family: the man cried in deep anguish.

Master smiled and said: but my dear man, the thieves have done wonderful service to you. They got rid of the things that you don’t really need and you will never throw out either. Perhaps they need it more than you do. So now that you have been robbed, you can sleep in peace and leave your house at ease.

But Master; the man stuttered, they have taken all my expensive possessions and now I have nothing!

You are mistaken; Master said, now you have freedom and ease of mind and no fear of losing anything anymore. These thieves have done a great favor to you like friends. You should thank them and from now on live simply without fear and free of all worries.

I am not sure if the man understood the Master, but he bowed with reverence and left the temple. Then I turned to the Master and asked: how can the thieves be our friend?


Only a friend takes away what you don’t need without being asked. And give you the greatest gift of life in return for free. You may not thank a friend who brings you a materialistic gift that adds to your household space since it essentially complicates your life, but you must always thank the one who takes away something from your household. When you empty your life of materialism, you fill up the space with spiritual goodness. And a person who helps you do that is certainly your friend, including a thief who burgles your house. 

Saturday, October 10, 2015

What is Happiness

What is happiness? I asked one day.
It is an attitude and a choice and a way of living. It is already within us embedded deep.

Then why do we attach happiness to external things like a car, or a house, or meeting someone or falling in love or going on a vacation, getting a job, winning a game, etc?

These external stimuli are only keys to unlock the happiness within us. Let’s imagine that your body is a jar of cookies, the container, and the cookies, which is your happiness, are inside but you can't unlock or open the jar without an aid and these things like money new possessions an occasion (marriage, birthday, anniversaries) or meeting someone, falling in love etc acts as that aid to unlock or uncap the jar so now you can reach inside and get your cookies or happiness if you call it.

But if your jar is empty and there are no cookies inside then no matter how many times you open the jar you won’t find any cookies or happiness. So first create the cookies within and then look for the aids to open the jar.

What happens after I consume all the cookies inside the jar? I asked playfully. I wasn’t going to let the old man go easily.

He gently ruffled my hair; for he knew I was jesting, and said, ‘No matter how high you climb, would you ever become a bird?’ 

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Ignorance is knowledge

Isn’t knowledge necessary to achieve something? One day I asked the Master. Not always, sometimes you can only achieve what you don’t know. Ignorance is the key to success. Come on! I retorted, how can that be?
Let me tell you a story – Master began:

There was a village far away in a distant land that had a big steep mountain right on the outskirts that legends claimed was impossible to climb. The villagers, simple and believing, as they were, accepted this knowledge that the mountain was impossible to climb and no one ever climbed it or even tried to. And in order to warn of the impossibility to any outsiders who didn’t know the legend, they had put up a big sign board right on the path that led to the bottom of the mountain, ‘This Mountain is impossible to climb’.

One day a little boy came along and his curious eyes were drawn to the summit of the mountain. He didn’t go to the village; he just walked past the signboard and climbed the mountain to the top. And someone from the village saw this boy on the summit of the mountain, dancing and howling with joy, since he saw things that on one had ever seen before. In no time the entire village had gathered by the signboard, talking about this boy who had climbed to the top and wondered how it could be possible.

When the boy came down and reached the gathering of the bewildered villagers, the village elder, and an erudite white bearded man, asked: young man who are you? How did you climb our mountain? Didn’t you know it is impossible to climb it?
‘Really,’ the young boy said bowing with respect, ‘then please forgive me, for I didn’t know that it was impossible to climb your mountain.’
‘Didn’t you see this sign, which clearly states that it is impossible to climb this mountain?’ The village elder pointed at the signboard.
‘I saw it but I didn’t know what it said, I am sorry but I can’t read so I presumed it said something to welcome visitors and to urge them to enjoy the climb.’
‘But how could you climb without knowledge?’
‘Ignorance is boundless,’ the boy replied, ‘while knowledge limits us to what is acceptable and already known. If you always seek knowledge how will you ever learn what no one else knows!’


Always climb a mountain that is impossible to climb; Master patted my back.