FAITH

Why faith is so deep
That it is never complete
Yet it is so reassuring
That it never gets obsolete
But then what it should be
And what it would be
If it wouldn’t be so
If we believe in a God
It should be beyond
The questions of logic
Yet it is never illogical
Your God never says
That don’t question His ways
Doing so is human
And if we all are His creation
It is His wish for us to do so
There is a God
Who lives in all of us
Only if we care to listen to him
When you question Him, His ways
You are being logical
And your faith is evolving
God comes to you
Naturally, subtly
That you don’t realize it
But it happens
That you find your answers
Or questions become irrelevant
God is then being logical with you
By letting your faith evolve
Whenever it happens
Your faith goes even deeper
There comes times
When we feel disoriented
But the connect is always there
That keeps us rooted
And shows us the way ahead finally
It becomes stronger every time
Our faith is so deep
That it is always a part of us
Only if we care enough to listen to it
And when we question, we do that
Doing so helps us to see beyond
The questions of logic
That is faith, His faith, ours faith

©SantoshChaubey

THE KOLLAM QUESTIONS

THE QUESTIONS

Are we religious or are we ‘religious zealots’, the fanatics, who don’t care even for other lives?

Was it a man-made accident or a massacre? When a ‘man-made common sense’ said bursting firecrackers was dangerous when there were thousands of people around, what made those so-called custodians of Hinduism go ahead with the recipe of disaster?

Are temples failing to fulfill the very purpose they are built for – bringing your soul nearer to God?

The supposed journey of faith in life – from the ritualistic worship practices to the higher spiritual connects – are temples snapping the cord here by putting more emphasis on pomp and show, on materialism?

Shouldn’t temples be the places inspiring you to see that next step in your life when you don’t need a temple to be with God?

Over 30 crore deities are a way of life in Hinduism – giving easy access to faith – and the chance to transcend to that higher spiritual realm – but what about manipulations of faith like this – something that happened at Kollam’s Puttingal temple in Kerala?

If grand buildings and premises wouldn’t be there, would it deter devotees from visiting a temple? Suppose, if we had the ‘Dwarkamai’ as Sai Baba had left – preserved in its pristine form – would it make any difference? After all, that doesn’t prevent you from developing the dependent infrastructure with changing times.

High and mighty temples, aren’t they fundamentally flawed then – with practices like VIP queues, gender discrimination and multi-crore buildings – where you can find all but spirituality that a drenched soul desperately seeks?

This tendency to shower your power in any possible way – from gunshots in wedding processions – to sacrificing animals in temples – to displaying fireworks in weddings and in temples – isn’t it a social malaise?

And how deeply ingrained is this? Kerala chief minister Oomen Chandy said the government could not ban the practice of firecrackers exhibition in temples. Even after this massive tragedy, no strict action like putting a blanket ban on firecrackers/fireworks is expected from the all powerful Travancore Devaswom Board that manages over 1200 temples of kerala.

But the biggest, the most important question is, can state allows people like the temple priests or the people accountable for managing larger gathering that we see at religious events, to continue with their charade, with their whims and fancies of their perceived versions of ‘social might’?

PS: An annual ritual of firecrackers exhibition associated with the Puttingal Temple in Kerala’s Kollam district went horribly wrong after the huge stock of firecrackers stored in near vicinity of the temple and a densely populated area caught fire. The accident took 105 lives and the toll is expected to rise as many wounded are critically injured. Though the district administration didn’t allow the display of firecrackers, it is clear the government machinery didn’t take the matter seriously, something that allowed such a huge stockpile of dangerously inflammable material at a place where thousands were expected to gather. The government’s reluctance, at a time when Kerala is scheduled to elects its next government on May 16, would certainly have emboldened the Kollam temple administration to go ahead with its plan on firecrackers display.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

DICHOTOMY OF THOUGHTS (ON FAITH)

Without God’s will, nothing moves. Without God’s sanction, nothing happens. Whatever happens – happens because it is God’s wish.

Therefore – whatever happens – happens for good.

But what good can we see in others’ suffering? But what good can we find in a world that is forced to suffer by the bad deeds of human – corruption, crime, terrorism, religious wars, civil wars, imperialism and so on? But what good can we feel on demise of someone close? But what good can be if we fail to find reasons within us for hostile happenings inflicted on us?

Nowhere is it more visible than at a temple, especially famous at temple attracting large number of devotees.

Faith brings us there – to a temple – to a place of worship. We go there for majority of reasons – with hope in mind that there is Someone to listen to us.

But when we see the system in the temple and around it (or at the place of worship), something that happened again with me, when I visited the Hanuman Temple in Connaught Place in Delhi, these questions spontaneously come to us.

There are people waiting for alms – for many, it forms an important, inseparable part of daily chores.

But then, there are other people as well – suffering – living sub-human lives.

The scenes at such God’s abodes can distract any conscious soul – forcing the rational mind to raise questions.

And the one answer that comes to mind is – atonement. Probably, that’s the God’s way to seek repentance.

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©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

IN THE NAME OF FOLLOWING A GOD..

The god had never asked us to be around. He never desired us to be calling for him day in and day out. He never decreed that his temples be made. He never got written down the elaborate rituals as the ways to reach him.

Yes, we can say so, because none of us, at least in the contemporary times, have heard the god saying so. And we cannot go into the past to verify what has been said.

What we follow in the name of the god is mostly inherited, never or seldom realized.

What we follow in the name of the god is mostly what is told to us by the saints, godmen or other types of messengers considered carrying the god’s messages. But we need to be highly selective in believing on them, on what they taught.

Where is the god?

If we are part of him, if he is inside each of us, why such elaborate rituals then, why this complex chain of illogical, unspiritual and outrageously materialist processes and sub-processes?

There are countless claims of seeing god, meeting him or talking to him. But almost of them belie their accounts when scaled on ‘who the god should be’.

And a look around, in the world we are part of, in the times we have been living in, is more than enough to raise valid questions on the concept of the god we have been living with.

So, why should we do all that we do, in the name of following a god, or in the hope of meeting him in the afterlife?

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

FOLLOWING A RELIGION

These are my personal views based on my life experiences on how I perceive Religion and my religious obligations. This is not to hurt anyone. It is just a logical attempt to present my viewpoint.

  1. Your Religion has to be the evolved one and so it has to be logical. One must not accept because one was asked or advised to accept.
  2. There should be a harmony between your conscious and your Religion. When it comes to choosing one of the two, and when you believe in the universal tenets of Humanity, you should go for your consciousness.
  3. One should practice a Religion accordingly, and not just observe it as a body of norms inherited to be followed.
  4. For your Religion to be evolved and so to be logical you must seriously question its tenets and you must vehemently seek answers. Faith has to be logical. It must not be blind.
  5. It is true no one can claim to see God, the basis of any Religion, and so Faith is about your preferences, it is about your believing in God without seeing him, it is, basically, about feeling Him. So it can be argued how to correlate Faith with Logic then? Okay, no one is saying to question God, and so the religious tenets, for the sake of questioning only. But do question the tenets when your conscious says a God cannot allow certain events to happen, events that are ungodly in nature.
  6. If you don’t find answers it means you don’t understand your Religion or probably the questions where your Religion is silent are the questions to be explored in the next phase of its journey to evolve.
  7. Doing so leads one to the Spiritual quotient of God, the essence of Religion. You must understand that Spirituality and Religion are not different but are mutually interdependent concepts on the path leading to the manifestation of God, or to say His feeling in our conscious.
  8. Spirituality is not about some big concepts and sacrifices. It has to be, basically, feeling your God inside you while following the universal norms of Humanity that tell you need to take care of the other human beings the way you take care of your family. It has to be the quest within. Be honest to your God within you and you are well on the way to gain the Spiritual wisdom.
  9. Your Religion should tell you to respect other Religions the way you respect yours. If it pushes you to treat other Religions as inferior, you are fundamentally flawed then. It says either your Religion has problems or you have indoctrinated it without understanding its essence. Fundamentally, all Religions promote equality and peace – you need to ‘come’ to believe this.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

GOD, SPIRITUALITY AND RELIGION: AN INTERDEPENDENCE WE FAIL TO UNDERSTAND

What Religion should be for us?
Why should we follow a Religion?
What Religion should we follow?

These are the different questions that, many of us, ask, from time to time, without caring for what we know of and how we know the Religion we practice.

The reason that pushes us for this sort of questioning, a process of reasoning in tougher circumstances of life, comes to our thinking whenever we face hopeless situations in life, where we are not able to reconcile with God for the events happening around us, whether with us or with anyone else where we see the events in motion, events that directly affect our way of thinking.

It is true we ask these questions regularly but we seldom realise what this regular frequency says to us for, we seldom think that our faith and so the Religion we follow should be the evolved one.

We ask questions but we don’t seek answers.

God, Spirituality and Religion – the mess that we have created around the meanings and the symbolisms of these three fundamental words of any human life and so any civilization is responsible for it.

These three words, their meanings and their symbolisms are mutual, interdependent and related. They cannot be practiced in isolation.

Those of us who ask questions but don’t seek answers don’t understand or don’t want to understand the dynamics of these basic principles of organizing a life.

Basic principles, because even if one doesn’t follow a God, a Religion or doesn’t believe in Spirituality, the person needs to know why he is not following when the majority is doing the contrary.

His alternative thinking should also be the evolved one.

When we see or start to see these three fundamental entities, God, Spirituality and Religion, in isolated blocks or when we compromise one at the cost of the other, or when we begin to make combinations without knowing the dynamics of the interdependence, we fail to understand any of these three fundamental principles of life.

And that is what most of us do.

That takes us away from the logical path where we don’t know, we don’t understand, so we never realise, but we follow. So we question but don’t seek answers because even those questions are not the evolved ones, because we become opportunist in seeking God.

But to know God, one must understand the Religion.

But to know life, one must understand the interdependence between God, Spirituality and Religion.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

RELIGION: IT IS THE SYSTEM THAT SUCKS

We are made to drink vials and vials of religion from the very first day we arrive here.

It doesn’t matter whether we are passive receptors or we actively participate in the process.

At the end, the end of which never comes, we are made to assimilate a lot, without given a chance to realise what we needed to assimilate and what we needed to be aware of to keep us away from.

It is a cycle that begins with birth and goes on and on. Even the death doesn’t put a lid on its spillover effects.

And we cannot be blamed for it. It is the System that sucks.

But if we are the System or a part of it, we are to share the blame. So, even if we cannot be blamed, we are to be blamed, in a way, by the feeling of a transferred burden, continued unabated, the beginning of which no one knows.

And neither ‘they’ are to be blamed directly, who, unknowingly or unwittingly, become part of this elaborate trap of indoctrination of religious elements, manipulated and wrongly interpreted for ages to the extent that religion, in reality, has lost its essence for the commoners who form the majority of the followers of any religion.

The spiritual quotient has been killed effectively and the fear quotient of religion reigns supreme.

Religion, being dominated by its different contractors today, has become a well-oiled machinery of the System for its opportunist diversions.

Whether ‘they’ are our immediate family members, our friends, our neighbours or our teachers, they themselves are the victims of this mentally tortuous cycle of domination of few over the waves of the multitudes by implanting in masses the fear of religion and the subsequent religious hatred, that it so easily inculcates then.

And like us, ‘they’, too, are to be blamed for being part of this System, carrying the feeling of the transferred burden, knowingly or unknowingly.

The heterogeneity of religious hierarchy has this homogenous characteristic – the followers largely bear the similar traits – ignorant, fearful, threatened, burdened and confused – that make the thousands of millions of them ruled by a numbered few.

The prevalent forms of almost of the practicing religions have been manipulated into the worst forms of indoctrination practices and the exercise begins right at birth.

Had it not been the case, we would not have the likes of Asaram Bapus or the likes of millions of their followers.

And Hinduism is not singular to this rot. Christianity, Islam and every other big or small religion (in terms of number of followers) have their Asaram Bapus.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

KRISHNA

The beauty of the Black that remembering You recalls
The light in the darkness that thinking of You brings

The simplicity of Shyam and the mysticism of Krishna
God, You are we know, and yet, so human You look
Telling us the essence of existence, of human conscience
The Perfect One You are, the voice of universal conscious
Telling us it’s Your creation and we are Your manifestation

O Krishna, You are the epitome of love, of its purest expression
O Krishna, Your ways are mysterious, its divinity transcendental
O Krishna, feeling You is like looking at life joyous with emotion

O Krishna, You show us the way to live, to love, and to be
O Krishna, show me the light to see the life as it has to be
O Krishna, give me the courage to become who I have to be

The revelation of life that the faith in You illuminates
O Krishna, let me have an evolved faith that reverberates

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

HOW CAN WE FEEL GOD?

The physical manifestation of god for a worldly man filters to the three possibilities of the value-system – faith, feeling and inheritance.

Most of us inherit faith. We get it in the value-system of a family tradition. We start following god as we see others in the family doing it. We are told about god’s omnipresent and all-giving nature. We are told god is someone to be approached in every situation of life and is the final call in every sort of crisis.

As we grow-up and develop a conscience, this inherited knowledge and know-how starts shaping as ‘faith’ that we keep on building and following throughout the life. We symbolize that faith in the form of god. There is nothing wrong in this.

In happier moments, we thank god. In moments of crisis, we plead. Some of us even go to the extent to criticise god questioning his existence, but only to go back to god again.

In the process, we become increasingly more and more seeking from god, never realizing our true duty towards the creator of the life.

If he creates, we are his creation. If we exist, he exists within us. This is the only way we can feel god.

Yes, feeling god is the physical manifestation of god for most of us who come from the worldly life of moments of happiness and gloom.

But even then, most of us cannot claim that we have felt the god.

Feeling god within us is a higher spiritual enlightenment. And one need not go into the debate of right or wrong or righteous or unrighteous and follow some codes of living to get onto that path of spiritual enlightenment.

There is nothing highly philosophical or scriptural about it. All we need to do is to see the other form of existence as equal to us and the problem is taken care of. While writing this is simple, following this is tough in a materialist world.

Yes, we can feel god provided we do justice with this cardinal principle laid by the god himself.

And remember, your god can take any form given the value-tradition of your faith-system.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

CHAOS, FAITH AND LIFE: ENJOY YOUR EXISTENCE

Chaos and Faith are so intertwined in our lives that occasionally they transcend all the subtleties to take us to the realm of crude questions and innocent realities.

The existentialist relevance of the very existence here!

We are born. We grow up. We decay. We depart. The unidirectional flow that life has adopted has dominating role of Chaos. The elements so ingrained are probably the most dynamic constituent that represent the faculty of reminding beacons – the need for us to know us; to take us from ignorance to knowledge; to make the known larger an entity; to bring as much order to our that existence of ‘I’ and ‘us’ as we can; to validate the Faith that sustains us. We arrive with Chaos, totally absent minded of everything. We start growing; realizing what belong to us; realizing what is ‘us’. Subconsciously, consciously, spontaneously, compulsively, we bring Order to outdo the Disorder. Faith gains dominance over skepticism.

Life has a flow.

But the Disorder never goes. The Chaos remains there. It manifests vitally in the final moments to tell us where we faltered; what we couldn’t do to bring the harmony of the Chaos in sync with the tune of the Order. At moments it leads us to question our Faith.

Chaos turns us to the Faith. It turns us away from the Faith.

Faith has different dimensions in our lives. It manifests in varying forms infiltrating us in varying degrees. Though we may develop spiritual, religious, ritualistic, atheistic, monotheistic, ignorant and every other conceivable dimension of individualism, we sustain and continue the tradition of Faith and Chaos is its driver.

As a normal human being, we turn to the Supreme, be it a tragedy, to seek his protection or to complain; be it a celebration, to convey our thanks; be it our day to day lives, to pray to sustain our lives in a proper order. The Faith scrolls on. Some of us who don’t believe in the institution of the Supreme, have varying degrees of Faith in their own capabilities given the prevailing circumstances in their lives.

Faith is the God. Faith is the Supreme. Faith is the realization of the Self.

And Chaos is its alter-ego.

Life is the sum total of the cumulative outcome of equations of ‘Poise-gained’, Poise-lost’ and Poise-sustained’.

Chaos alters the Poise. It brings about modifications and changes in our day to day lives. It may have both aspects – supporting and disturbing. Consequences vary from transforming effects to the ruffling of a few moments. It disturbs the Faith that we have in life and its driving forces. It leads us to scrutinize. We start scrutinizing us. We tend to scrutinize everyone else in our social sphere. Chaos magnifies. The process takes its course. What we find in the ‘intermittent end’, we go through the event or the eventuality and accept the outcome. In some cases, some of us revolt to change the change. The disturbance recedes. The Poise alters the Chaos.

During some of these moments, the magnifying Chaos may lead us to the moment when our helplessness takes us to the purest of us, when we criticize us first; when we can see our faults honestly; when we can see the fault lines in our living sphere involving people and relations that form the congregation of ‘us’. We put the sharpest and straight forward questions to us first. During some of these moments, we get platonic with our senses; we may get back the largely missing innocence. We come to see the reality as it is and not as we had started perceiving it. These moments of introspection may lead us to the nearly perfect Order in our lives if we are able to sustain it.

But something happens most of the time that pulls us to the reality that we were living in, where we tend to justify us for every deed of us. The nearly perfect Order tilts more towards the Chaos on the horizon. Again we find us engaged in the equations of the Poise – the Poise of the Chaos and the Order.

In-between, we find some finer moments to capitalize on.  Sometimes, not knowing is bliss. Sometimes, knowing much is bliss. Sometimes, being on the line is the in-thing. Sometimes, being an idiot is a joyful complement. Sometimes, being a conscious Soul is a satisfying moment. Moments we live in. Moments we live for. Moments that make life a Whole.

ENJOY THE MOMENTS. THEY EXIST FOR YOU. ENJOY YOUR EXISTENCE.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/