Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Distance brings perspective

Maybe you have seen a picture from up close and interpreted it to be one thing. When you zoom out of that picture, you might realize how different the object really is. Try bringing a book close to your eyes and then read. Are you able to? Only when you move the book away, at a distance, can you see more clearly. When you try to hang a painting on the wall, don’t you move further away from it to verify if it is indeed straight?

When an unhappy event occurs in our lives, we ask ‘why me’. It is rare to ask the same question when we are joyous. In the Bhagvad Gita it is preached that whatever happens, happens for the good. It is difficult to accept this statement by one who has just lost a job, met with an accident or has got separated from a dear one. Maybe several months or years later, he might realize how that event was instrumental in bringing him to where he is today – hopefully in a better place. I am sure you have heard several real-life stories of people who had not understood the significance of an incident at the time when it occurred.

We are short sighted and look at immediate benefits whether on the stock market or in personal life. In business, change is the only constant and reacting rapidly to the change is a measure for success. This cements the belief on thinking short term and visualizing from near. We decide to launch a product in the market since our competitor has done so, as we need to keep our market share. It is only much later that analysts point out, when they see things from a distance, why this move was not a good one.

When a relationship gets strained, one of the advices given is to maintain a distance. Separation for a limited time might help to reach the conclusion that indeed ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder’. It might also bring in a wider perspective to actions that were earlier thought as incorrect. On the other hand, it might help to clearly put the pieces in place to conclude that the relationship is indeed one to get out of. The distance helps to bring perspective.

How many times have you immediately responded to a nasty email and then regretted later on? Maybe letting it cool in the draft folder is a good way to ensure the distance in order to bring in a different perspective. Maybe you will still be able to communicate what you want to, in a manner that is easier to accept for the recipient.

When we are in this journey of life, we are only seeing a limited road and distance. We try to make the most of what we know and can see. The One Above is at a distance and can see clearly. Possibly that is why they say that we should just do our deed/karma and leave the rest to Him. Do you agree?

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Quest for the Absolute Truth

When we say that grapes are green or the book cover is red, is that the absolute truth? We have studied in Physics that things appear to have a colour because it reflects back light of that particular colour and absorbs the rest. That is why the grapes appear green and book cover appears red. Moreover, some insects see the grape as purple due to the eye filter they have. So, can we say with certainty that the colour we see is the absolute truth?

When someone says they can count from 1 to 10 and rattle off the whole numbers 1,2,3......10, is that the absolute truth? What about the decimals that come in between eg. 1.25, 3.458 etc? Moreover, is counting in steps of 1 the only way to count from 1 to 10? What if we count as 1,3,5......? Is that not correct? So can we say with certainty that this is the absolute truth?

We can never know the beginning or end of anything. Say we plant a seed and it grows into a tree which is later cut down to make wood. Is the seed the true beginning? Where did the seed come from? What happens to the cut wood? Can we know where the coffee bean used to make our coffee comes from? So can we say we know the absolute truth?

The same incident is reported differently by different news channels even at the same point of time. There are several guesses about why an airplane crashed or tsunami came. The historians have different views on the greatness of Alexander the Great or legend of Mahatma Gandhi. Can we know with certainty what is the absolute truth?

When science experiments do not follow the pattern proved till the current one, the scientists come up with Chaos Theory and the like for the unexplained. Is even that explanation the absolute truth?

What we say and know is the "perceived truth". Possibly that is why they say that the world is an Illusion/Maya. We are in this world with many unanswered questions and one of them is the quest for the Absolute Truth. I am near the beginning of my journey. Would you like to join and enlighten me?

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