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Timely lessons

india Updated: Jan 27, 2012 00:04 IST
Sanjay Suri

Time, at times, becomes our best teacher. It teaches us some harsh lessons in the best possible manner; but if ignored, it teaches us some best lessons in a harsh manner and gets us to the invariable conclusion: that contentment is the key to eternal bliss.

A neighbour was unable to find a better job which could get him enough to fuel his passion of living luxuriously. He always complained that his father did not allow him to cross the thin line where the pull of allurement was strong enough to drag him into oblivion. His father was content with what he had and lived a pious life.

He planned his expenses carefully and steered himself clear of any allurement. Contentment helped him to concentrate on his prayer and protected him from falling a prey to the glitter of materialism. Positive energy emanated from their home and engulfed the entire residential block when his father chanted holy mantras and hymns.

After his father's death, he was at the crossroads, whether to tread the path of contentment or to enjoy the short-lived warmth of materialism. But his 'wants' out-numbered his 'needs'. Soon, he was lost in oblivion, and he wouldn't even pray. Being unable to sustain his new-found lifestyle and satiate all his wants, tension began to take a toll on his health.

One fine day, he called me to meet him. As he saw me, he wept bitterly. He wanted to light that lamp again in their small puja room but he never could.
He wanted to hear those mantras and hymns that once filled the air but he never could. He was broken beyond repair. Even my shoulders seemed to lend no support. The futility of allurement over the charm of grace and divinity born out of contentment had dawned on him but he seemed to be too late to catch the bus. He died the very next day.

Beside his mortal remains, a lamp was lit again; but he couldn't see it, and some mantras were chanted again but he couldn't hear.