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Path to spirituality

A reader called up to congratulate me that I was a religious-minded person and that god will be on my side.

delhi Updated: Nov 09, 2010 00:10 IST
P.P.Wangchuk

A reader called up to congratulate me that I was a religious-minded person and that god will be on my side. Without hurting her sensibility, I said I was not religious, but I have been trying to walk the path of spirituality. I tried to explain that to be religious meant to be a believer in gods and goddesses and a myriad of ritualistic practices. But spiritualism means care, love and belief in the welfare of all sentient beings.

Spirituality is a way of life that is clearly headed towards living a simple and yet high quality of life. Simplicity in day-to-day ways of life without compromising on the ideals and mission of life keeps one ready and disposed to a purposeful life. It is in this sense that I have made the usage of ‘high quality life’ words.

In this sense, a beggar can live as good a quality life as a billionaire can. For example, there are beggars who toil day and night to earn a living not for themselves but for others. In other words, spirituality is being in a positive posture that makes a difference in alleviating the sufferings of others.

Some people call it rational spirituality, a way of life when one follows all the good codes of one’s religion and of others too, but keeps a safe distance from their dogmatic and ritualistic aspects. For instance, being a strict vegetarian, non-smoker and tea-totaller is a rational spiritualist. I always say any person who indulges in non-vegetarianism or has alcoholic and smoking habits can never fulfill the conditions to be a rational spiritualist. Such habits are the very anti-thesis of spiritualism.

As someone had said so nicely, self-respect is at the bottom of good behaviour and manners. They are the expression of discipline, good will, respect for people’s rights, comfort and feelings. One should have humility and willingness to help others. Hadn’t British thinker and critic John Ruskin said the first test of a good man is his humility? It restrains one from harming others, physically or mentally.

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