Later I reflected: maybe, Deepak’s happiness is transitory, and probably it’s true he’s happy because he just cleared his stomach, and perhaps he’s not as spiritually advanced as I thought. Nevertheless, is my appreciation false? There are others who aren’t constipated, but they never sing a happy song. Isn’t Deepak special, like everyone else in the monastery, and by choosing to remember his unique quality of gratitude and simplicity I had invited happiness in my own heart.
The many ways of seeing reality
I once saw a drawing of an old woman that appeared to be of a young lady, when viewed from another angle. The way you see a situation could be different from the way your best friend or spouse sees it, and yet, both of you could be right! But if you insist that the way you see things is the only reality, then not only have you missed the beauty of another perspective but also risk losing relationships with others who view the situation differently. Truth, therefore, in this world of temporariness, is a relative phenomenon. Everything is in a constant flux in this world, and to insist that Deepak’s bowel clearance alone caused his happiness would deprive me of another perspective- of his fantastic goodness.
Deepak surely has human frailties like each one of us has but isn’t he also made of a billion impressions, a zillion desires, and unlimited human excellence? Isn’t he another divine soul, a spark of God, with immense power and potential? To search for ‘The truth’ in a given situation would then be foolhardy at best and arrogance at worst. Isn’t it better to choose an aspect of Deepak’s persona that would enhance our lives and encourage him as well to explore his divinity?
Can we ever find the truth in the matter that manifests temporarily to our vision in different forms?
To discover ‘The Truth’ we need to go beyond the temporariness of the visible world and connect to something that is eternal- something that would survive the ravages of time. And one phenomenon that comes close to Truth- in fact, that’s ‘The Truth’ – is ‘Principles.’
To be continued….