Thursday, October 24, 2013

Are You Just Living to be Laughed and Clapped for a While Displaying Your Skills and Talents ?

Yesterday I have brought to your notice a list of twenty eight philosophical statements which the authors of my favorite book want us to give some special attention. Today, I want to discuss about the first statement from this list.

This statement in full is like this : A display of specialized skill does not signify possession of spiritual capacity; cleverness is not a substitute for true character !

It is not very difficult to digest the universal truth that this philosophical declaration contains. But just as there are people who can understand truths fully, there are people who do not get it so easily. Forget those people who do not try to understand or those who are with bloated egos and self pride that do not allow them to listen and tune to any other truths other than what they feel like agreeing. Forget also those who do not have any mind capacity or basic intellect to understand philosophical truths.

Now coming to the statement as above. It is not so difficult to understand that we humans exist in this world with varying levels of skills and abilities. We all have varying levels of abilities or talents. It could be physical, intellectual or philosophical. 

Some are extremely good in some sports and games. Some have much greater physical strength than many others. Some have much superior and beautiful bodies. Some are with high intellectual abilities in mathematics, physics and such other sciences. Some are very good inventors and may be owners of many patents. Some have acute business knacks and might have amassed money and wealth even they cannot measure or know.

During my school days, I used to wonder about the mathematical ability of a lady hailing from my neighboring state, Karnataka, in India. She is no more now, and her name is Shakuntala Devi. She never had any formal education, but she possessed a brain that was even faster than modern computers in arithmetical calculations. Indeed her ability even made our renowned physiologists wondering!

I watch those Karate black-belts break tiles and bricks with their bare hands, in awe. How is it that their hands become harder than rocks in a fraction of a second? How do their soft tissues change their softness to such awesome strengths? 

I had a lovely pet dog named, Sonu. She was a pure white Pomeranian  , though not as pure in her breed. She was our faithful companion and ferocious protector of our home for more than a decade! While her body and paws used to feel like soft cotton to us always, I used to marvel at her extra ordinary steel like strength her soft body acquired when need arose. She used to kill rats, house lizards and also some clever crows in just one blow with her otherwise soft paws. Is it not something exciting our curiosities? 

No doubt,  these abilities could be some extra ordinary gifts from the various agencies of God for enabling humans (and animals) not only to facilitate their material living, but also to make a few of us to think, explore and wonder about the supreme designs in the Nature that are presented to us by the agencies of God.  

But a mere possession of some of these extra ordinary gifts does not make any human being any special one for God. Because, such special gifts and abilities are abundantly provided in varying degrees to animals and humans. In the case of animals, the special abilities are for their natural survival and existence. But for human beings these abilities are not only for their own survival, but for them to care for others and also for realizing the existence of God from whom these talents come, with utmost humility.  

If the individual who possesses the special gift, instead of using it for his own selfish satisfaction, tries to find out what God wants him or her to do with that gift, he or she is making an effort towards enhancing his or her spiritual capacity. The person is aspiring to find out the unseen spiritual existence and desire of God!

Such persons would recognize the need for living according to the desire of God. The most essential feature of this recognition is the desire to love and serve other human beings, without the desire for gaining some personal benefits.

But a good majority of people forget this. Their special gifts soon transform and get augmented with cleverness. Cleverness is that special ability to cheat or hoodwink others. In that process they lose their spiritual capacity to love and serve others.

If our world appear as a world of partiality, injustice, envy, hatred and exploitation, it is because of the clever acts of such people. 

A mere possession of some special talent does not automatically ensure possession of a desirable and good nature that is known as character. Remember, most animals have some special abilities that are not found in humans. Many of these animals may pose a threat to our lives if we are not careful. They need not have a character that is too good for us! But humans are not to be like the unthinking animals. That is the reason why we are different. Character is what make us different from animals. But yet we find many human beings who are similar to animals. They are the characterless people. They just live like animals without using their superior abilities of mind which are not in animals. They refuse to recognize the existence of God and give reverence to Him, just as the animals. Many of them take undue pride in their abilities and the pride ultimately becomes the cause for their fall and destruction. How sad!

They have been privileged persons. But they refuse to realize the existence of the spiritual force that maintains every thing material and physical in this world. 

They refuse to enhance their spiritual capacities of coming near to God, a pre-requisite to progress in life even after their material existence in this world for some years. 

They become too pre-occupied with their special skills during their material existence that they forget to board the ship that could have taken them to the other shores of abundant life and everlasting adventure!

Character development while living a material life is essential for enhancing spiritual capacity. 

Spiritual capacity means the degree of nearness to God. Nearness to God provides the much desired potential for overcoming the dangers of personality destruction after material death. 

Material abilities and skills, though good while living in this world, do not ensure spiritual capacity or possession of a good character. Physical and mental abilities and skills do not make a person special for God. But spiritual nature makes a person special for God; a special feature that enhances the bond of love between man and God. The higher the spiritual ability, the more the person becomes humble! Because, with spiritual nature developing, the person begins to develop character and recognizes his or her insignificance before the Supreme existence of God. Selfishness and ego begin to vanish in such persons. In other words, animal nature begins to fade and the human becomes more like real humans instead of being like animals. 

More and more people with good character make this world transformed to a world with divine presence. Just as the heavenly worlds !

If you have some special material skills or abilities, you also have some additional responsibilities to use those in the manner in which they should be utilized. 

Mere possession of those special skills and abilities does not make you a desirable person for God. It has no significance in the long run !

So, if you think that you are a very clever person, beware of the dangers. Your cleverness for you would earn you only short term gains in this world. After all, your life span of a few decades is not at all a long term!

It would be preferable to discard that cleverness for character. But building a good character together with the possession of those skills and special abilities would make you not only desirable for the people of this world but also for God.

But when you are not very sure of the afterlife, you are bound to become anxious of getting the maximum and enjoying the maximum during the short span of life in this world. 

Let us drink and enjoy, you might think! Let me take advantage of my skills and my cleverness to the full, you might reason with your soul!

But when you are in your clever act, what could be the feeling of others who watch you from all around ?  

No doubt, the spectators might laugh and clap just as they do while watching those skillful circus clowns.

But are you living just to be laughed and clapped for a while ?

Are we living to show off our skills and talents for getting clapping from our fellows?

Do you want to be like a circus clown during the entire life span?

Is it not worth to think seriously?

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