Monday, August 22, 2011

How to move the great Indian middle class but?

We have been talking about the Indian youth and Indian middle class for so long. With the advent of diverse career opportunities we have really transformed our lifestyles from being localized to government quarters to freely spending money.

We have been lazy to vote. Thus, there was no love or affair with the political class. We were happy to pass the days until Anna Hazare pricked our nerves.

He took an issue which has touched all of us. Its like the air around. We don't complain about air whether its stale or fresh or polluted or sticky. We have to breathe. Same way we paid bribe from traffic cop to post man to policeman to government bureaucrats to either get our work done or to escape punishment. An issue that did not pinch us much. We talked about it in isolation, over the tea/coffee and went back to life.

Anna Hazare sat on a platform called as India against corruption. He was visible. He was on empty stomach. He was clean. He made us wonder. Why is he wasting his time? Why cant he chill out in his village?

He persisted and few of us believed in his movement, his methods and his power to change. Democracy is after all for people and by people. We the people ignored all the sectors which thrived on bribes. We got our salaries and businesses going on and we did not care.

We saw the Indian national flags. We knew it was about our country. It was not for an individual. It was an issue which would decay our nation and prosperity as whole. Sooner or later even we would be subsumed by it. We would demand bribes too sooner or later, we have been giving it as "Poor policeman, how can he run a family with such a meager government salary?", "I dont have time nor patience nor leave to come here everyday".

The movement could not have been sustained it was started by some political party. BJP would have meant to be a Hindu movement, Mayawati/Yadav etc., would have been casteist movement and same for regional parties it would have been driven by language or local caste etc., But this movement was apolitical. Something new for great Indian middle class. The political protests have mostly been violent in India with loss of life and property. Here we saw non-violence been regarded and respected again. A new Gandhian movement of 21st century.

The other day Bhuvi, based out of Gurgoan mentioned. The employees across companies had discussion with transport department to arrange buses to Ramlila Maidan (the kurukshetra of India against corruption ) on a daily basis. Every team in his company on different project was taking leave on rotation basis, so that they can participate in anti-corruption movement. People in Mayur Vihar walk on the streets on protest every evening. No one cares about Cricket or Kaun Banega Crorepati.

We just want a glimpse of Anna. We just wish him success. We give him support. We love him for bringing back hope and trust in the society, for showing us that protests can be peaceful and protests are necessary to shake the government of the day out of their slumber.

Democracy after all is run by people. We need to cleanse our system, from the self to the society we need to give a good wash now. Now is the moment. Capture it. Participate in it. Feel the passion that drove us to independence.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Who is Guru? Why I need a Guru?

I was experimental in my youth. We had the attitude of tasting everything indiscreetly and then learn from them. We believed that you must see, hear, touch and feel everything. The emphasis was on sensory pleasures. Nature was outside. Treks and hiking were the norms. Mountain peaks were location of peace.

I went around believing that nature was the best teacher. Keep your eyes and ears open and move your fingers around and mother nature will take care of your learnings.

We never realized why we felt so exhausted at the end of each trip of senses. We just wanted to get rid and drop dead to rest. Anything that led you to deep sleep was considered as cool. But again, the next few days would be tiresome and hangover would continue to haunt us. We would really not understand why our experiments with senses and objects were failing miserably.

The hills were always lush green after monsoon. We cherished them and captured the moments on camera. We created printed photo albums. I dont know where those albums are lost along with the memories and friends with whom we participated in the adventure.

The confusion continued from school to college to multiple job changes. Nature somehow missed to teach us. We were left stranded. What happened to mother nature and all the Gods we prayed and singed prayers in all the temples for? What happened to the peaceful photos of Gautam Buddha and Swami Vivekananda. We read reams and reams of text they had created. There were so many photos of the enlightened ones of past and of Gods. There were so many stories narrated by many.

We saw. We listened. We read.

But still we missed something. Still the pit in stomach remained. You wondered if it remained during sleep too. Still the hesitations remained.

Something like a love was missing. It was not the love based on needs, neither physical nor emotional nor out of boredom or convenience. A love without demand. A love without control. A love in which you simply give and continue to give and still do not exhaust or feel the loss. A love minus transactions.

We dont know if such love exists until we witness the grace of Guru. Only love exists. We are born again out of this different love. Initially you are confused with this sort of loving in which the Guru is only giving and asking about your well being only. He does not have any other question or demand or judgement.

The Guru comes with a name. He walks, talks and move around just like any other normal human being. You are confused at times looking at the frail body moving around, sometimes blowing in the napkin and clearing the nostrils.

I call him Sri Sri RaviShankar and he says "Guru is like a window. When you sit in a room. It has walls and windows. The sky is always present. When you look through the wall you see concrete. When you look through the window you see the beautiful sky, vast and endless, full of stars and moon, a cool breeze touches you. You look at infinity. Infinity is longing to give you love and a Guru is a transparent Window through which you can witness such unconditional love. The window may have glass or might have bars. Despite the presence in bodily form you will experience your true nature via the enlightened Master.
It has no name but still you know.
It has no form but still you can touch.
You experience unknown.
A Guru gives you living love. A love which is real. A love that begins in the human form and leads you to formlessness. A love full of feeling. A love that helps you to blossom into the most beautiful flower that you were meant to be. When in the space you and Guru are in separable. The plastic gift wrapper around the bud breaks and the flower blooms into the space.

A Guru will give discourses and answer to your doubts and questions. You will listen and feel nice about it. But if you leave it at feeling nice level only, then you have done a lot of damage. You lost the reason why those words were given to you. Until you experience the meaning of the word your journey/hearing is no better than the trek on top of mountain. At the end of trip/hearing you will be where you came from.

An enlightened master can never make mistake. Mistakes happen in unawareness. A master is aware all the time. He has become witness to the laws of nature. He is connected to the infinite love.

Enlightenment is journey to the unknown. Knowledge will take you on the path. But knowledge will not give you enlightenment. Knowledge will take you to garage but to go home you have to get down from the car and walk the steps to reach home.

There is an unknown force that has transformed Earth otherwise it would have been another Moon. You see so much of science and concrete and development. Who is behind all this? If you think that this is discovered by so and so or invented by so and so then you are limiting the beauty of the unknown.

The Guru is window to this unknown, infinite love. A living Guru can only give living love. Statutes/Photos rely too much on your imagination. Words and sounds can only take you so far. In Guru's love you have a chance of dissolving into the infinite.

PS: Most of the content is derived from Sri Sri RaviShankar's talk on Narada Bhakti Sutra (The aphorisms of love) listened at Hari's place today morning at about 6:30 AM. 

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