Spirituality of convenience

Is spirituality a matter of convenience?

DELHI, India, December 9, 2012 - I wrote my last entry for this column on 5 November. One month and five days later, I have gathered the courage again to write. I spent the last 36 days working very hard in my office, taking care of family matters, mourning a dear friend’s death, travelling for work and thinking about my column. Just ‘thinking’ about Spiritually Yours.

So, does spirituality take a back seat when we are ‘busy’ with other priority tasks in life? If so, then are we, or am I, really a spiritual individual? Are spiritual thoughts meant for a relaxed Sunday morning over a cup of coffee and light newspaper reading? Is spirituality a matter of convenience?

At a formal lunch reception recently, a young girl sitting next to me started talking about the art of spirituality and meditation after she had downed three glasses of wine. When she started giving her high flying ideas on the topic, I just presumed that she was a bit drunk. But then she actually started making sense, or I started making sense of what she was saying!

A friend across the table asked her, ‘So when do you meditate during the day?’

‘All the time’, she said. ‘As I talk to you, I am meditating. I am connected to some divine power right now as I eat this salad, drink from this glass, look at you and speak’.

‘To meditate is not to sit in a certain way, at a time of day for a certain number of minutes’, she said, ’Meditation is to live in the present, leave the past behind and forget about the future’.

I was, to say the least, impressed! I had been feeling guilty of not being able to write on spirituality for so many days. I was thinking that I am just being ‘unspiritual’ and non-committal to this wonderful task by prioritizing other things, which actually did need a lot of attention.

It’s been a good lesson learned. I have learned that spirituality is not a matter of practice. It is not about a routine. It is a life style, a way of thinking, an attitude. I am a lot wiser after this break from my column. Next time I take another such break, I will have less guilt in me. Then, I will truly be, well, spiritually yours.

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Manu Arya

If I knew the answer to ‘who am I’ I would not have had the need to write this bio. But until I do, I can just say that for me, everything in life hangs by a thread of faith and destiny. Add a pinch of hard work to that, and you’ll have your choice of life served on a platter to you!

It’s magic to be born and brought up in India of today. A society that offers a blend of traditional with the modern, mystic with logic, religion with secularism, and science with faith; India is the place to be! For several years, people from across the world have knocked at India’s doors whenever they needed a bit of soul-searching. But today’s soul-searching comes with a twist! While India is no more just a land of snake-charmers and elephants, it continues to offer its vibrant culture, traditions and history to the world in a modernized, re-packaged manner.  I welcome you to join me in my journey of soul-searching in the current times. I can guarantee you that even if we get lost, we’ll get somewhere!


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