Sometimes we remain confused as we always were. We look for answers and keep seeking answers and are happy with the replies for that moment. How far do we contemplate on things? Or are questions only a temporary escape to the temporary problems of life? Or is it just an assurance or comfort at times of distress.
I remember giving replies to the same queries of many people again and again. But then I do know that they ask because they do not remember that they had asked it the previous time. They do not remember because they did not digest it into their being. So, I write a common post here for all those in search of peace, search of enlightenment, search of a guru, search of liberation, search of a path, or whatever they be termed as.
Spirituality does begin to get someone's attention because it is time for the soul to go within. When the world and worldly things get too much to handle, spirituality also then does seem an answer to the search of that permanent peace and happiness that one failed to get from the world. Many suddenly lose interest in the things that they used to be fully involved in and now something simple and divine seems to soothe them. This is, of course, a great blessing as one has realized that there is something more to life and something beyond life and death. The quest for the meaning of life then begins and one begins getting more curious to understand life and its meaning. As one begins the search more and more things open up and reveal it's presence that were once unknown of or thought as taboo. One begins being more aware of one's own self and starts exploring the subtler and abstract aspects of one's self. Here the confusion for many begins!
With the high use of internet, there is plenty of information out there in all forms. Information that ages before took a lifetime to learn can now be accessed at fingertips withing minutes. People and networking helps one get quick answers to one's question. Though this is all a boon, it can tend to be confusing, misleading and rather time consuming. Curiosity makes one jump into anything and everything one sees around. Impatience makes one leave things incomplete and restless and thus frustrated. Here are few things I would like to not advice but suggest to all new seekers, especially the younger generation.
- Ask yourself what do you want? What is it that you are searching for? What is it that can give you peace and happiness? If you say you don't know, then find out. Dig. Contemplate. Spend time with yourself. Explore yourself. Until this is done, one's any spiritual quest is going to be a wander.
- Don't simply wander into each and every methods. Find out if it is what can give you want you want (as in point 1)
- Don't simply read too much of everything. Reading too much means many things are unread also as there is a hurry to dig out more and more from all resources. Thus, too much and half knowledge both are dangerous.
- After you do all the explorations and know what is it that you want, seek a path, seek a guru. Paths are many but all lead to the same destination. To seek a path you wont have to struggle much if all the above points are covered. If not, there will be more confusion because you until you don't know what you want and don't know your inner self's need, how can you find your path?
- Once you are ready with the path or ready with what you want in life, desire for it earnestly and live towards it. Know that spirituality is not easy as it looks and there will be lot of obstacles that you will need to overcome. By now you are mentally prepared, you know what you want and you know where you want to head.
- Now, surrender to the divine and trust the process that is happening with you. Know that everything that is happening is happening with a reason and is happening for your highest good, though it may seem as a turmoil or unfavorable incident.
- By now you are ready to walk the path. And when you are ready as a seeker, the guru appears. Remember, it is not the seeker who choses a guru, but it is the guru who chooses a seeker. Guru may not necessarily be a person who can sit besides you and train you. Guru may not be a person whom you can see physically and hear with your ears. It can be a nonliving guru also. How, when, where, who is this person should not be worried about. Just trust your instincts and move ahead with surrender and you shall encounter the guru. By all means test your guru internally but once you have "known" that this is your guru follow the guru with all your heart.
- Once you have decided your path/guru leave no stone unturned to follow the guru/path. There will be advises, suggestions, recommendations, etc, etc, by other spiritual aspirants but it is up to you whether to keep listening to everything and get confused or just follow the path you have chosen.
- Keep your sight turned within always. If your vision is always outwards (into the world, friends, enemies, correcting, people, blames, relationships, etc, etc) then what else apart from chaos can you be in. Let things go naturally in everything. Listen to your heart always not people!
- Focus on things you want not on the things you don't want because you end up manifesting. You create your own reality. If you want something in life learn to be positive on that and stay focused on it all the time, not slip down with the slightest remark or circumstance.
- Stop blaming, criticizing and targeting everyone and everything around you for your disharmony. It is only you to blame for the condition you are in. It is your reaction to external circumstances that decides in what condition you will be in. Choose to ignore which you don't want and take in only what is good for you. Forget what the world is up to. Stop trying to change others. They have their own soul agenda and they will go through all that they are supposed to go through. You do not have the right to interfere? If you can interfere it is only your own life and aspects. Change that.
- Leave the "I am the doer" doing. The "I" always comes out of the ego and keeps saying I did this, I did that, I am to do this, I am going to do that, I should find this, etc etc. Leave the navigation to the divine. Trust in it more than yourself.
- Have patience. You have build up lot of stuff during your lifetimes which you cannot undo in one sitting or few months. It takes a lot of practice and efforts to clean the mess. So, while things are messy and the cleaning is going on, have patience. Don't fret and fume and give up because the results are not quick. Remember, the more negative you get, the more trouble getting back on the path and the more karmas you add on. Read my other posts on what to do in such circumstances.
- Finally remember one thing. Everything you are undergoing is due to your karma. There are good things happening to you due to your good karmas and bad things happening due to your bad karmas. Your existence in this world itself is due to karma. Spirituality (your path) is the practice by which you slowly dissolve your karmas so that one fine day with regular sadhana and practices you are left with no negative karma and that is the day you will have no obstacles or sufferings in life. It is NOT any tom and dick and harry that is giving you confusion or trouble. One should accept 100% responsibility for one's situation and only after that one can even take responsibility in clearing one's own karma. Till then you have to stay focused and keep moving, come what may.
- Last but not the least. Digest well what is written here and next time you are stuck somewhere, the answers will pop to you. These directions and instructions and guidelines will pop up to you. But for it to pop up, you got to pop in all these things. Hope it is done well :)