“All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.” – Abraham Lincoln
A timeless subject for poets across cultures, across ages. Mother, the essence. For continuity of life as we know it.
We know that knowledge and wisdom is propagated through the teacher – disciple connect. The mother – child connect is far deeper. This relationship lasts lifelong. It’s deeper than a bond. And more often than not, words fail to touch the deep essence of the connections.
J.K. Rowling related this as a protective shield which stays with Harry throughout. But isn’t it true for every mother in every form? The one entity in the universe who cannot ever think anything wrong for her children.
We owe her everything! But, we take this for granted. No ?
Then there is mother earth. Our living mother, from which arise all living creatures on this planet.
We owe her everything! But, we take this for granted. No?
Once this is established, we should also understand that all consciousness ( souls ) arise from one singular entity. Somewhere in this vast universe trillions of stars and planets. Every galaxy, every star, every planet, every speck of dust. The one entity which is mother to everything. How can that entity ever think of anything wrong for us. Whom we sometimes refer as God. But we never realise what is God.
We owe her everything! But, we take this for granted. No?
Harmony does not only mean music. It describes the quality of forming a pleasing and consistent whole. Across spectrums. Apart form the commonly known harmony in music, we can have harmony in art, in colours, in architecture, in schematics, in spoken words, in the jostling senses of your body. Harmony is balance, symmetry, consonance, coordination, blending, correspondence and compatibility. Harmony is also concord, agreement, peacefulness, amicability, co-operation, understanding and unity. Harmony is a noun that describes an agreement, such as in feeling, sound, look, feel, or smell. It’s necessary for roommates to be able to live in harmony in a small space. Harmony is when one feels happy. Harmony is getting along together. Harmony is being nice others. Harmony is the flow of life.
We tend to feel annoyed when something undesirable happens. In such situations, first, we have to learn to be aware. And to acknowledge how we are feeling. Second, we ask why exactly are we feeling annoyed? Is it really because of what someone said, or is it because they did not say what we wanted them to? Is our anger really due to what someone did, or the false belief that others should do as we want?
A big ‘virus’ that causes us to experience the disease of anger is the lie that others should do as we want them to do. If we did not think this way, would we get angry if others did not act as we wanted them to?
There must be harmony in our thoughts, speech and deeds. What we think, we do not speak. And what we speak, we do not perform. We think and utter words of virtues but do not have that courage to implement them. Harmony is when there is no contradiction in actions.
The truth is that we are all free spirits. We do not control others, nor do they control us. We need to recognize that like musical notes we are all different. Only then we are able to create harmony. And with others, we can create a beautiful tune.
“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” – Mahatma Gandhi
To strongly wish for or want something is Desire. According to the Rig Veda, the Universe began, not with light, but with desire, ‘the primal seed’. Desires constantly arise in us, only to be replaced by other desires. Without this continuous stream of desires, there would no longer be any reason to do anything: life would grind to a halt, as it does for people who lose the ability to desire. An acute crisis of desire corresponds to boredom, and a chronic crisis to depression.
We were born from desire. But cannot remember a time when we were without it. So consumed are we to ‘desiring’, that we lose consciousness of our desires. And only realize when they clash with other desires.
If desire is life, why should we desire to control desire? —For the simple reason that we desire to control life, or, at least, our life. Paradoxically, our ancient religions almost always warned us that ‘Desires’ are the cause of conflicts.
In Hinduism, Desire is referred to as the ‘destroyer of knowledge and self-realization’. The Second Noble Truth of Buddhism states that the cause of all suffering is ‘lust’, ‘coveting’ or ‘craving’. Even Christianity, presents that four of the seven deadly sins (envy, gluttony, greed, and lust) directly involve desire. Rituals such as prayer, fasting, and confession all aim at curbing desire.
Suffering can be traced back to desire. Fear and anxiety can be understood in terms of desires about the future. Whereas, anger and sadness relate to desires about the past.
Desire is not only hurtful, but its outcome even more so. The accumulation of material wealth – houses, cars, and other riches rob us of our time and peace. You think that acquiring things will make you feel secure, but the reality is that the more you have the more fear for losing it. This continually drags you further and further away from the peace your soul is yearning for. An excess of desire is called greed. Because greed is insatiable, it prevents us from enjoying what we already have. The greater problem of greed is that it is all-consuming, reducing life to nothing but an endless quest for more. To want something and not get it leaves you feeling frustrated. Learning to be free from desire is learning how to be peaceful. Desire causes peace to disappear.
No sooner is one desire fulfilled, people formulate new desires. The problem is that our desires evolved ‘merely’ to promote our survival and reproduction. They did not evolve to make us happy or satisfied, to ennoble us, or to give our life any meaning beyond them. Today, survival is no longer the most pressing issue. Yet here we still are, chained to our desires like a slave to his master.
“Our desires always disappoint us; for though we meet with something that gives us satisfaction, yet it never thoroughly answers our expectation.” – Elbert Hubbard
To feel anxious when one attempts something new is natural, it becomes a problem though when it stops us from achieving our goals. When it grows into a feeling that we just don’t seem to be able to shake off.
Mistakes are a big cause of anxiety. We all make mistakes. It is natural. The trick is to learn from them. Ask yourself, ‘What can I learn from this? How can I learn from this?’
‘Make Mistakes’ might be a goal worth considering. At the least, it deserves to be called a New Year resolution. Why? As Einstein said, “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” Mistakes are the essence of learning. As people encounter new things and develop new skills, they will make mistakes. Mistakes or failure must not be seen as incompetence but as growth challenges – necessary for learning.
Mistakes must become opportunities to learn and grow. Have the courage to say to yourself – ‘I am going to practice thinking differently’. Although, learning from mistakes cannot be automatic, we can teach ourselves that they are an important part of the learning process. How many things you know were actually invented by mistake – Penicillin, Fire-crackers, Velcro, Potato Chips, X-ray images, even Plastic and Ice-cream!
Having some fear of mistakes might be a good thing as it may actually help performance enhancement. But excessive fear could cause problems. Avoiding fear-provoking situations, social meetings – dating, presentations, etc., and procrastinating about not being able to complete a task.
A helpful tool to overcome mistakes is – Repeated and frequent practice. Over time, you start to feel more comfortable with making mistakes. Don’t be discouraged if your anxiety doesn’t lessen right away, this is normal and expected. Keep trying and repeating as frequently as you can.
Never think that you cannot conquer your anxiety. You can. Just imagine a life without anxiety.
“Anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrows, but only empties today of its strength.” -Charles Spurgeon