In Conversation With.....
by Geetashree Chatterjee
Often times in hours of philosophical contemplation, I am prone to conclude that life is nothing but an unending series of human endeavour at building and breaking relationships. While the latter is an extreme step, man, the social animal, consciously or unconsciously, focuses significant quantum of effort at forging rapport and bonding with fellow human beings, be it within family, in school, college, office, playground, community gathering or elsewhere wherever interactive human forces are at play. Modern terminology has coined a new nomenclature for this essential human pursuit –‘networking’.
Today, a lot of emphasis is being put on inter-personal behaviour and techniques as these are considered the key instruments and drivers of managerial skill in so far as organized human activity is concerned. With the electronic intervention, the scope of networking has escalated to speedier track and more impersonal level. A person incapable of getting involved in this process is unequivocally shunned as unsocial or anti-social.
Parallel to our earthly existence and requirements, there resides another realm of action and thought, which is equally important to us if not more.It is our spiritual zone where we get intimate with the Divine Supreme. Herein too every individual has his or her unique way of communicating with the All Powerful. Some pray, some sing songs in His praise and devotion, some prefer to chant mantras, some seek Him through good deeds so on and so forth. My best buddy, who belongs to the Christian faith, lays great stress on lighting candles at the Church, be it for thanksgiving or seeking the Lord’s blessings. With her I have been privileged to visit the most beautiful Churches of Kolkata including the Carmelite Convent.
My great grandfather was a ‘GrihiSanyasi’ i.e. he would strictly adhere to an ascetic lifestyle within the bounds of domesticity. My mother makes it a point to hum a bhajan while lighting the ‘diya’ or doing the ‘aarati’ in front of the deity morning and evening. During a certain adverse phase of my life I would make it a point to visit a particular temple once in a week, and sometimes even more than once, whenever I felt the urge to pray.These regular temple visits filled me up with an indescribable strength to face all hardships of life.My elder sister whose formative years were spent under the influence of the Brahmo Samaj(who are averse to idol worship) has always placed greater faith on prayer and meditation.
As human relationships develop with time, so do, I believe,the methods of communiqué with God. As we grow older and perhaps wiser, our relationship with our Maker evolves into a higher and stronger form. At one point of time I had a deep fascination for rituals – visiting temples, doing pujas, fasting on certain auspicious days etc. I still follow these routines. But somewhere the fervour has mellowed down a bit. Now it is a more willing submission to the Lord, a quiet surrender to His enigmatic plans, a silent conversation with Him in times of need or otherwise. During these ‘heart-to-heart chats’ I have fought, entreated, cajoled, persevered and more often than not conveyed my deepest desires to Him. And lo! Most of the times the entire Universe has conspired to materialize these whispered wishes. At times, my appeals have also got rejected for the better.Apparently, His vaster game plan eludes human logic yet wizens us up on hindsight.
The way we interact with our Master is a very, very private and personal affair. Interestingly,the spiritual evolution and growth within our own selves are inspired by many a factor. There are many facets of this intimacy with the Divine. Sometimes he is with us like a friend. Sometimes, he is like a guardian taking care of His wards. Sometimes He is the Superior shooting orders to His subordinates. Sometimes He is the King being kind and benevolent to his wanting subjects.
Friends, have you ever analysed your relationship with God? How would you like to have Him by your side? Have you ever ‘networked’ with Him? Have you invested enough to have a wonderfully spiritually satisfying rapport with Him? As you read this article do give these questions a few moments. You may find out some hidden truth inside you, some phenomenon which you may have ignored in the hustle and bustle of life, some miracle which has imperceptibly but definitely transformed you into a better person, some beautiful experience which you may have overlooked until now. So, please do halt and think over. You may have something to share with us, under this column, in the next issue.