Importance of right perspective

The importance of right perspective on life cannot be over emphasized. I am just returning from listening to the heart rending cries of a poor mother who has lost her ten year old daughter in an accident.

Death is not the end. We are all jivas who enliven this bundle of flesh and bones for a short period of time. As jivas, our existence spans well across birth and death. We have been around before the birth of this body. We will be around after the death of this body. The jiva is the real person and not the physical body. When we interact with people, we are actually interacting with the jiva. When the life term of a jiva in a body ends, the jiva will have to leave and take birth elsewhere. This end can come as natural death or “so-called” unnatural death. Any death other than suicide is natural only. When a death happens to our near and dear one, the best response is to bless the jiva and pray for the jiva that it gets a good birth next. All rituals in all religions associated with death help us only to understand and accept the continued existence of the person after death. The body is made of physical matter and it is consigned back into nature in the form of fire, earth, water, etc. The jiva goes ahead in its moral evolution.

The purpose of our life is moral evolution. By going through life after life, we need to make ourselves better people – more patient, less angry, less lustful, less greedy, less selfish, more honest, more loving, more helping, more giving, etc. We have the free will to decide our actions and we have the responsibility for them. What we face in life is the effect of all our past – both in this and previous lives. There is no escape from the effects of the decisions that we take. We will have to face them – in this life itself or in a future life. When the moral evolution reaches to near-perfection, then a new dimension of life opens up as a still deeper knowledge of our real nature as pure Consciousness.

The acceptance of this reality of life – as the jiva who exists after death and who is responsible for the decisions in life – is the best solution to two major problems in life, which can be put in the forms of two questions which every person asks at sometime or the other.

1. Where did I come from? Where will I go? What is death? What has happened to my near and dear ones who are dead? Where are they? How can I help them?

2. Why am I here? Why should I be good? What is wrong in cheating, stealing, taking bribes, etc? When I get something free, is it really free? Why do bad things happen to good people?

Most of the personal and social problems today are because of lack of the right understanding on this. With the right understanding, we will be able to face the ups and downs in life in a better way. We will have better human relationships. If more people in the society have the right understanding, it will make the society a better place to live in.

If only the poor mother had soaked herself with this understanding during the times when life was smooth, it would have given her more strength to face the events when life did not proceed as expected.

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3 Responses to Importance of right perspective

  1. Arnab Lahiri says:

    Dear Gomu Ji

    Your blogs are always enlightening. I really enjoy reading them and more I learn a lot from them.

    Regarding your today’s blog it touched me somewhere close to my heart. The reason is obvious- we all have seen someone close to us leaving this world. But trust me, during those hard times its very hard to recap all what we know or have read. At that time, our entire mind is clouded with the visions and memories of the dead ones. And its tough to concentrate on the supreme truth.

    I remember reading Sankaracharya. He was, apart from a Vedantist a true social reformer also. He broke one of the rule of Sanyasa (which I consider was essential and a form of reformation)- which says that a Sanyasi can have no roots to His home, to His parents; for Him the whole world is His family and the Mother Earth- His home. He went to His home and completed the last rites of His mother. For which He was actually abandoned by the villagers and the Brahmins during that time. He promised His mother that when she will depart He will come to complete the last rites which He did. Why I am narrating this incident is interesting in context to your present blog. It is said that during that time even He could not find solace in Vedantic truth and was crying incessantly. He was completely unaware of the surrounding for the next three days and the Vedantic truth also failed to alienate Him from the excruciating pain of separation.

    Death is something unbearable. We know, that we are part of this and one day we all have to leave this sheath but still when we see our near and dear one, we forget all this. I remember in Mahabharata when Dharmaraj Yudhisthir says that what is most astonishing is that we see each day so many deaths and dead body but still we are oblivious about our own!

    My deep condolence to the Mother.. Recently one of my close friend’s dad expired and I have no words to console this unbearable irreparable loss…

    • gokulmuthu says:

      Dear Arnabji,

      I agree with you that it is difficult to have the Vedantic perspective when calamity strikes. However, there are exceptions like Nisargadatta Maharaj, who spent time with a sincere seeker who entered through the back door of the house, not knowing that Maharaj’s wife had passed away and the body was kept in the front section of the house.

      One thing I have noticed is that when a death occurs in the family, some members start thinking about “what is death”, etc. But soon they forget everything and continue with the regular routine. If only people think deeply about these questions and understand these during the good days, it will help them when they have to face calamities.

      • Arnab Lahiri says:

        Dear Gomu Ji

        I was really not aware of Nisargadatta Maharaj’s story. Its really inspiring. They really treat this world as temporary encampment.

        Thanks for your wonderful explanation and inspiring fact from Maharaj’s life.

        With warm regards,

        Arnab

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