| Opinion | Malaysia | 4 Nov 2016 | Asia Samachar |
We all draw our own lines. Some sooner. Some later. Through our life experiences, we form our believes. We nurture these believes, condition our believes as we navigate through our experiences in the environments that we are put in.
A young child in the lap of her mother in the Gurudwara, singing along unaware. A young teenager with friends attending church as an outsider for the first time. A young adult ‘seeing the light’ after surviving a horrific car crash. A jilted lover coerced by another to switch gears and believe in another God of another religion. A dying patient influenced by the sweet promises of the only visitor at his deathbed, a clergyman.
Our beloved believes are ever forming. As thinking beings we sometimes question the validity of our believes, but this hardly happens when our believes seem to work at that point in time. It depends on what seems ‘to work’ for you. It depends on how you internally define what ‘works’ means. If you hold on strongly to the precious comfortable life that you have, with abundant food to keep you nourished, with abundant earnings to keep your ego nourished and to have your pride of your standing in society in shining condition, and if worshiping a chicken as a diety ‘works’, why not? If it heals your broken heart due to a loss of someone you’re attached to, and praying to the sky as a practice ‘works’, why not? If it gets the results you were hoping and praying for, and lighting those joss sticks ‘work’, why not?
Let’s admit it. Majority of us owe our believes to what we want to help us in the environments and the conditions we are in. And we want our believes to help us immediately. We are, after all, only human. We have pain, sufferings, joy and bliss borne from our environment just like any other human in that same environment.
The preachers will have you believe that there are higher purposes than to just surviving our environments. They will tell us that there is eternal bliss should we follow their prescriptions or interpretation of their believes. Probably because it ‘worked’ for them. It’s not impossible. Many of us, through the ages, have achieved eternal bliss through some graceful experience that formed their believes that pretty much ‘worked’. Some of these walk amongst us even now. A higher sense of purpose is evident, blissfully uncaring of what they call ‘worldly’ pains and joys. And almost definitely unexplainable to us ‘only’ humans. And we yearn to see if we can try to replicate their blissful existence, some thinking they are smart enough to replicate it infused with what ‘worked’ for them before. Many, or almost all, never do. Why? Because the experiences and the environments that these ‘only’ humans have thus far to the point where they have this yearning are very different from the ones with that higher purpose. We all have different paths, we are told. But sooner or later, our destination would inadvertently be the same. We evolve while trudging in these different paths of ours, we build new believes because our experiences are accumulated in our paths, our destination getting closer step by step. Each step may take a lifetime, so thus we grow, and our believes evolve accordingly.
It is why so that in each religious denomination, groups of humans evolving at different speeds in their unique paths splinter off with their set of believes that tend to ‘work’ similarly for themselves. It is no different from us Sikhs. Dogmas are given birth. Believes are further solidified with strong evangelistic leaders. Hey, if it ‘works’ for them…
I believe souls have different ages. Each on its own path to the same destination. The older the soul, the more entwined it is to understand where it is in its path to that destination. The older it is, the more mistakes it has made as it experiments during its experiences in those environments it finds itself in. No more trudging, these older souls seem to know how to jog in their paths. What ‘works’ for them may be very different from other souls because of their experiences. And their believes, when in their human form, are also formed from these accumulated experiences over the many past lifetimes.
Some of these souls realise that their evolution in their paths makes them understand what another younger soul is going through. They understand that their own believes won’t mean a single damn thing to the lesser evolved soul. Because the lesser evolved isn’t as matured. It’s akin to an elder sibling not expecting his younger sister to understand what is required for her to be a good footballer when she’s only 2 years old. Like the elder sibling, the matured soul can only hint or guide the first few steps for the younger soul to take in its path. Thus so is why the founder of the Sikhs recognise what the purposes of these more matured souls are for. We lovingly call these souls Sant or Saints. They are to guide the majority of us as they evolve at a faster speed.
What matters most for us mere humans as our souls evolve is to also recognise that each of our brothers and sisters have different paths, evolving at different speeds, experiencing in different environments. And we are also somewhat just similar to them. We are probably as matured as they are. If we are more matured, perhaps more evolved, we would recognise their struggles, their pain, their joys. And we wouldn’t impose our believes onto them because we’ve been there before, and they’ll need to experience whatever it is they need to accumulate the experiences for their evolution and growth. We can only hint. We can only guide, if we recognize that they are matured enough to receive our guidance. The prerequisite is that we innately know we are more matured.
And if indeed we are, we would know the best approach for them to accept our hints and our guidance with no resistance whatsoever.
That is how I’ve perceived the great workings of highly evolved and elevated souls that we’ve called Saints in the past. They hint, and we accept wholeheartedly knowing it’ll ‘work’. They guide and we learn almost immediately, and amazingly it has ‘worked’.
However, remember that if we think we are more evolved, and we assume our believes will work on our lesser evolved brothers and sisters, and we try and prove that our believes will ‘work’, then it may very well be the case that our maturity isn’t any more evolved as we think we are. Because we won’t recognise that our paths are infinitely different. Our journeys are only our own.
[ASIA SAMACHAR is an online newspaper for Sikhs in Southeast Asia and surrounding countries. We have a Facebook page, do give it a LIKE! Visit our website: www.asiasamachar.com]
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