Saturday, November 14, 2009

Today's Experience -Tomorrow's Experiment

To my father, his “spiritual” Masters, the Mother and Sri Aurobindo, were not
abstruse “True Gurus” so much as scientists. Preaching is everybody’s cup of tea but practice is more often than not a victim of procrastination. In my experience, my father was a living example of “Abhyasa” and, through his vision, one could see the Mother and Sri Aurobindo, Buddha and whoever wrote the Bhagavad-Gita, as men and women who used their time on this Earth to experiment with their experiences.

All too often, extraordinary people who walk this planet are co-opted by the fearful masses. There is the stratum
which is comfortable where it is and the thoughts of Masters most often shake this status quo. Many, who today have expensive places of worship constructed in their names, had the least involvement with the objects of covetousness. It was, thus, safest for the classes, which govern by creating, in the masses, the fear-based desire for financial security, to “adopt” these dissidents and, in this way, to render them harmless “icons” of worship. If we “pray” to someone, it rids us of the need to strive to follow in their footsteps: their teachings become elegant acquisitions and respectable pastimes. And so it is that we have millions of preachers and, perhaps, no one who invests time in practice.
Indeed, practice often becomes blasphemy. Imagine, for one second, a Christian who had the courage to throw all the “commercial” objects out of a Church, a Buddhist (Buddha’s Teachings, so far as I know, do not require
reference to God/Gods) who rejected the Buddhist Pantheon, or a Rama who could reject a Kingdom just to keep his word (THE SENTENCE). Today, we have tied ourselves in a sufficient amount of “legal”, “emotional” and even “scientific” knots to prevent most of us from breaking free.

Yet, as has been said by someone or the other: if a cave has been dark for centuries it does not take centuries to bring light to it. Each day is the opportunity for an
experiment. What is experienced today can become something to experiment with in the next minute. Once this mindset is attained, the “experimenter” shifts as often as possible between Experience and Experiment.

Again, reading something and nodding in approval is the surest way to prevent any of it sinking into being: no amount of reading “How To” books on Football will teach one anything unless one also plays a game, at least now and then. Things are experienced in a place, a situation. We undergo experiences in Time-every second we experience something or the other. Yet when we want to ensure that we learned something from an experience, we place that in a “nowhere” Time/Space: Tomorrow. The Truth is that we only ever have a “now-here”.
Life is experience. Life is experienced through the senses. The five senses (Sight, Hearing, Smell, Taste and Touch) are the only way we know we are alive. And this should be a joyful celebration of Life as it is an amazing gift to see all that is around us, to hear the many sounds, to smell all sorts of things, to taste such a diversity of flavours and to feel millions and millions of sensations through our skin.
Unfortunately, for one reason or the other, we grumble throughout the day. Those who don’t openly grumble, mutter in their minds. We are not even conscious that we are never happy. In fact, although never openly acknowledged, Happiness is a great Sin except inside the covers of the latest Self-Help Bestseller. If someone in our immediate neighbourhood is happy, we must strive to douse that Joy with cold water as soon as possible. WHY?!
Anyway, this blog entry is for those who feel that something is not right and who would like to do something to make things right. There is only one way and that is to do something about it physically (not by sitting cross legged and eyes closed and hoping your problem will go away since you can’t see it!). Do something infinitesimal, with a tiny part of your “territory” (your body) for a fraction of time (one second). If you smoke and feel like stopping-stop for one second. Time is made up of seconds and so, that is all that you can do, realistically speaking. For one second, walk up and down the room instead of smoking.
For me, the goals are to experience Happiness and Enjoyment, Luxury and Comfort, to feel Love and Oneness.
My experiments with the above for one second each, using the timer on my cell phone:
1. Happiness and Enjoyment – I have uncrossed my knees and am wiggling in my chair and wiggling my fingers and toes, hands and legs stretching gently and feeling a great big Mmmmmmmmmm of happiness and enjoyment welling up within me and flowing out.
2. Luxury and Comfort – I am sitting with one leg up and one down in my chair and swinging this office chair gently and smiling as if I am Queen Cleopatra-aaaaaaaahhhhhhh.
3. Love and Oneness- I am gently hugging and cuddling myself and spending quality time with myself-making adoring kissing noises.