Drifting away from spiritual life

Last Updated 15 January 2013, 18:40 IST

In these modern times, with a tangible rise in human comfort/luxury levels, one finds many folks, with mercenary attitude, getting mired in morass of materialistic world.

The lure of ‘temporal pleasures’ is such that ‘they’ are inviting, enticing, exciting, tantalising and mesmerising!

Apparently, we have set off on a hoarding rampage, inexorably possessing all good things that enchant our eyes. We somehow feel that we are going to live forever, and enjoy materialistic comforts forever, in our self-centered world, comprising exclusively us and our family.

As an offshoot of our undue fixation with materialistic world, we are slowly drifting away from the spiritual world. Ironically, it’s this spiritual world (wherein we have our thoughts, ever circling around the Lord), which offers us the long-lasting happiness; while the happiness derived from ‘temporal pleasures’ tend to be transient. That is because, according to our philosophy, the worldly pleasures that we behold around, are all supposed to be just an illusion –  Maya!

Here, I’m reminded of a mythological story, wherein the celestial sage Narada once asks the Lord Vishnu to explain the meaning of Maya. The Lord, before explaining, points at a placid river, and requests Narada to fetch Him some water to slake his thirst. As Narada descends on earth, he sights a woman – a real enchantress, who enmeshes Narada in a love tangle. Soon, he exchanges wedding garlands with her, and embarks on his exhilarating married life.

With a shack built on the riverbank, Narada finds his life being pervaded by plenitude of happiness, living amidst wife and progenies.

When everything looks hunky dory, one day Narada sees dark ominous clouds, scudding in the sky. Soon the rains start pounding on the earth, causing the river to overflow. This in turn swamps Narada’s house, making his family and all possessions get submerged in water. When Narada too would be in the process of drowning, he implores the Lord for help, which the Lord does, by pulling him out of danger.    

When the Lord sees Narada in a poignant state, plunged in profound grief, after having lost his family, the Lord expounds whatever Narada had experienced hitherto, was all an illusion created by Him.

The Lord says, “Narada, the more your mind swarmed around worldly pleasures, the more you swerved away from spiritual world, to the extent of even forgetting to get water for me”.

The subtext of this story is that the more we gravitate towards worldly pleasures, the more we’d move away from the Lord, who deliberately creates these pleasures, to test how much we remember Him.

And, worldly pleasures, which we painstakingly go in pursuit of, proffer happiness only for passing moments, unlike the ever-lasting happiness that we experience, by eternally surrendering ourselves to Lord Almighty, who is the permanent entity.       

(Published 15 January 2013, 18:40 IST)

Follow us on