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Archive for February, 2014


As much as we live in a scientifically evolving world, we are also afflicted with spiritual poverty. Ironically, this has happened in the very land of spiritual masters, sages and the enlightened Buddha, a land which the entire world turns to for spiritual knowledge.

Unfortunately, there is no measure of the spiritual rate of growth. In the words of Diana Cooper,” if children and adults were given permission to speak their truth and taught to follow their intuition, then honored for doing so, there would be no war.” In these words, we see the presence of spiritual values as being directly connected with the individual and war.

In the period of “satyug”, there was science, politics, economics, a system of justice. The difference is that every child was taught the ethics and values that should underlie all of these.

Therefore, the creation of the ASHRAM CHATUSHTAYA or the four stages of life was the most effective system for the natural, practical and spiritual regulation of society.

In the first stage, BRAHMACHRYA ( the student and celibate stage until the age of 18 years), the child learnt all the subjects : academics, sports, use of weapons, creative arts and above all, the values of honesty, respect for elders, integrity, duty consciousness, charity, love and compassion and balancing duties and responsibilities. The teachers were sages and elevated people who actually set an example with their own lives instead of just preaching without practicing what they taught. Today, it is not easy for parents and teachers to earn respect for the reason that, often, they do not live their lives in an exemplary way. Today, there is very little of value based training happening and children are growing up without the required anchor of the right knowledge and inner strength which is not and cannot be the product of mere affluence. Mark sheets and gnawing ambitions are the second stage, the first being the moral, ethical fibre of each person which adds the most important value to the other aspects of success. Promiscuousness and greed form the basis of a teenager’s quest for independence and relationships. With the element of self absorption, the corruption of the misled youth is complete.

In the second stage, GRAHASTH ASHRAM ( the householder phase , from 18 years of age), the students from the earlier phase were trained and groomed for marriage and the duties and responsibilities that go hand in hand with this phase. This was a phase of professional training, often under the elders of the family because many enterprises were hereditary. This trained the individual in teamwork, maintaining respect for family and social norms. Mutual trust was the moving force, whether in family or society. Helping the less fortunate by contributing 10 % of earnings was an inbuilt part of the social fiber. Today, we see a very different picture. Even charity is done for motives other than compassion and duty consciousness. The overwhelming greed of money, power and comfort have eclipsed most of the earlier tutoring by wise teachers. The elders and dependent family members are treated as impediments to personal growth instead of being looked after. We see more and more old age homes mushrooming. The element of complete intolerance towards taking care of our own is a chronic malfunction of the societies today based on the erosion of relationships and the emerging of insular families. The contemporary youth has gradually been deprived of the right values and today, we see more spiritual poverty than ever before.

The purpose of the third stage of life, VAANAPRASTH ASHRAM (celibacy stage) was two fold. Meant for the heads of the family, it required the parents to transfer their householder status and business to the children who had , by then, stepped into the householder stage and had already had a few years of training under the parents in the field of economics as well as social values and behavior. The parents were then supposed to be there for the children in an advisory capacity along with looking ahead towards their future. Today, the elders don’t want to let go of the reins and are also known to control the lives of their children based on their image in society and their own aspirations for their children. In many homes, the lack of freedom of decision making is the cause for strained relationships and frustration among children whose voices are strangulated. While so many career options have opened up, the minds are not as open. Parents, teachers, families and societies are all interconnected in depleting the balance and the energies of the upcoming generation. Although changes are seen, there is still enough pollution of moral corruption going around. Change will happen rapidly when the intolerance towards this corruption is voiced in ample measure. This trend is becoming visible and there is hope that it continues unabated and strengthens manifold to actually manifest the return of what we, as Indians, stood for.

In the fourth and final stage of life, SANYAAS ASHRAM, this was a preparation to pass on from this world. “SANYAAS” means taking leave from active participation in worldly activities and moving towards spiritual evolution. In the earlier times, the senior couple would sometimes leave the children to stay in another home to pursue spiritual activities such as prayer and charity. Today, there are battles between father and son because the order of natural succession is not observed. This also happens because the children may not exhibit the caliber and mature thought processes to carry on the work of the elders effectively. So, we have to go back to the initial training given to children. In other scenarios, parents are unable to “retire” from the lives of their children. This leads to resentment and the corrosion of relationships.

It is true to say that the old order changes, giving place to the new one. However, there is a constant truth that prevails in all times, and that is the authenticity of universal laws governing us. Each time the law of Harmony is violated, the results have been terrible. We need to go within ourselves and experience the connectivity with everything in this Creation and unleash the power of love and compassion. Every soul has all the right knowledge within but gets enmeshed in the dark energies instead of making the choice of living in the light.

As Diana Cooper says in her book, “A New Light of Ascension “, “if children and adults were given permission to speak their truth and taught to follow their intuition, then honored for doing so, there would be no war”.

I would like to add here that “war” has to be waged against the dark forces within and outside us, against destructive thought patterns, speech and actions , in fact, against anything which does not result in harmony and “win-win” situations.

As the old souls reincarnate on the earth to raise it’s over all consciousness, I urge every existing soul to adopt a self searching path to help in raising the vibrations of the earth to a much higher level. Become a light worker and spread the light in the universe so that all of us can bathe in this light of peace, health and happiness.

Surekha Kothari

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There is a very subtle but clear difference in my mind between looking at a “problem” and an “issue”. The moment we are steeped in what we perceive as a “problem”, we somehow tend to get sucked into a vortex which not only depletes our energy levels but also clouds our intellect, only because we are involved too deeply.

An “issue”, on the other hand, doesn’t seem to loom so large in our minds that it engulfs us. It seems “manageable” and our mind does tend to give us solutions more often than otherwise.

The difference here is actually notional and totally depends on the levels of the modes of positivity verses negativity that exist within us at the time. The truth is, solutions lie within us at all times. Sometimes, we see them and sometimes we can’t see them. Many a time, we don’t WANT to see them. Our state of mind, perception, ego and intellect define our ability to emerge as successful solution givers.

I read a very apt quotation the other day. “The best way to succeed in life is to act on the advice you give others”. To accomplish this state of mind, it is essential to be clinical although it can be difficult for many. The word “clinical” does not merely apply to the medical profession. Any issue or problem, if viewed clinically and dispassionately can be overcome successfully. We just need to remove it from our emotional body and put it in front of us to analyse and deal with it. The moment we succeed in removing it from our subtle body, we revert to our natural state of balance and clarity for decision making. To be a detached observer can bring forth amazing solutions, resulting in a satisfied and happy feeling.

So, the next time, you face a “problem”, know that you need to immediately ask yourself, “What advice would I give someone else who came to ask me about a solution for this “issue” that I am facing at the moment?”

However, this can be done only if we are in a state of awareness of what is happening within us with our thoughts, emotions, biases, ego states and whether we are more reactionary in our habits or more pro active? People who are pro active are naturally more aware individuals because they act from their higher selves.

Let us become aware of our higher self and learn to be in constant touch with it constantly. Believe me, life will be amazingly beautiful and happy.

Surekha Kothari

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