Tree of Knowledge

The Tree of Knowledge

It is all about love, really  

If the youth finds spiritual teachings uninteresting, it is perhaps not their fault. Maybe we need to reinvent the way we impart spiritual values to them, says Swami Sukhabodhananda 

For every minute that you are unhappy, you lose 60 seconds of joy. The ability to be happy is a part of spiritual living. Something is spiritual if it heightens the spirit — one has to look to enhancing the spirit. Worldly life is never opposed to spiritual living as long as one is aware and committed to growth. If you learn the art of learning, then one door of spirituality is open and hence music or movies could help you in that direction. A spiritual affirmation is: Always be a student of life. Learn to listen to music in a way your heart opens.

Sant Kabir said: “By reading books one does not become wise but if one learns to love one is truly wise.”

The heart of education is education of the heart.

Let us take an analogy from the recently released movie 3 Idiots. The hero has a heart and knows how to love life, to enjoy and to serve. The movie so beautifully and entertainingly conveys this great spiritual learning. Love is more important than sheer success: that is the strong message. Success without joy and love is an empty achievement. This echoes the management saying: “Most of us are busy climbing the ladder of success only to find it is leaning on the wrong wall.”

3 Idiots revolves around goodness rather than the rat race to reach the top. Is not goodness the foundation of spirituality? Helping people in need is a great quality. Is not being caught up in ego a spiritual derailment? The chief protagonist in the film convinces us that he is not caught in an ego trip of being on top and being appreciated — he just does what is right and good, and what is the need of the moment. The trap to beware is: “Whatever is mine is good”, and the great awakening is to ask, “whatever is good, can it be mine?”

In the film Kurban one comes out with the feeling that a terrorist also has a heart. Even though the terrorist “falls in love” for his personal agenda, later on true love triumphs when he does his best to save his pregnant wife. In every one there is both goodness and badness. Which aspect we choose to activate is what will determine the outcome, good or bad.

So one often becomes a victim of others’ mischief, but to negotiate with their goodness is a spiritual art. Well-made films with good themes could impart valuable spiritual lessons but one needs to decode them wisely. Entertainment can be a great source of learning. All you need is an open heart and mind to grasp it. Enjoy as you learn.

Reflect on this: A young boy loves his dog and so he spends his entire pocket money in nursing the dog when it is sick. While he is trying to push the medicine down the dog’s throat, the dog pushes the boy and the medicine falls down. The little boy gets angry and says: “I will not waste my money on you”. As he was turning away he sees the dog licking the medicine on the ground. Then he realises that it is not the medicine that the dog rejected but the way it was being administered.

If youths find spiritual teachings uninteresting, it is perhaps not their fault. Maybe we need to reinvent the way we impart spiritual values to them. And maybe the gap is, in a way, being bridged by the world of entertainment in the form of good films that are rich in positive content and implication.

If you listen deeply to music, if your heart is open and mind still, music can be a great spiritual learning. The problem has never been love but love that is not directed in the right direction. Music opens up your heart and your heart is guided with a calm mind. Both are achieved through music. In fact it is said music is next to meditation.

DEVOTEE

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