I am a very curious mind. I have been always full of questions. Mystery, magic and the unseen has always pulled me towards it. Most of the times the questions have revolved around how things work in the universe, where is the source of everything and so on.
The quest of my curious mind has guided me to make choices which seem unreasonable on the surface, but have always presented me with a deeper insight and understanding about myself.
“Silence is never empty, it is full of answers.”
As I spend more and more time in silence, the need to know everything just seems to dissolve itself. It is no more about receiving those answers. At times, I feel no need for asking the ‘why’. During such times questions arise, and allowing them to pass, by just observing them brings an innate wisdom which is currently beyond the articulation of my own mind.
This is probably a glimpse into the gap which is beyond my mind and into a dimension of the creator. This space feels liberating where there are no boundaries and blocks, hindrances or dichotomy of any kind. It is just space ‘to be ’.
This glimpse strengthens my belief that there exists a state of being where one is absolutely free and there is oneness with all beings.
With this, the quest continues …..
Failures are an inevitable part of life. And whether they are good or bad, the fact is that they happen. So, here is what I would like to share what I have learned from failures in my life.
- Failures make you stronger: Every failure brings with itself a seed of wisdom. It is a gateway to infinite possibilities. When things don’t work out in the manner you have imagined, this only means you are crafted for something more holistic in nature. Something that brings you to the gates of abundance. (Abundance is not just limited to riches as often perceived by the social dogma. It means fulfillment of your existence)
- Failures introduce you to ‘The Law of Impermanence’: ‘Change is the only constant thing.’ Thus, failing is just like the change in season. And each season is important. It is important because it is a part of a larger scape of the existence. So, when you are progressing on your journey of life, welcoming growth, reaching out to endless possibilities of human existence, ‘being inclusive’ of everything, is just a stepping stone. Law of impermanence includes everything and judges nothing.
- Failure and success are both illusions: Last but not the least; failure is just as much as an illusion as a success. When the mind misses out on seeing the wisdom behind the event called ‘failure’, it holds on to a shallow dimension of existence. Hence, holding you back from being your Higher Self. It is like exploring the depth of an ocean when you are a salt doll. You will never know the depth of an ocean unless you become the ocean.
So, while you are journeying through life and you encounter ‘failures’, see them as opportunities to transcend these events and see beyond. Learn to ride on the ocean of life than to fear enough and anchor at the shore.
Embrace failure, embrace life.
During the World Economic Forum at Davos, the winner of the Nobel Prize for Peace, Shimon Peres, told the following story.
A Rabbi gathered together his students and asked them:
‘How do we know the exact moment when night ends and day begins?’
‘When it’s light enough to tell a sheep from a dog,’ said one boy.
Another student said: ‘No, when it’s light enough to tell an olive tree from a fig tree.’
‘No, that’s not a good definition either.’
‘Well, what’s the right answer?’ asked the boys.
And the rabbi said:
‘When a stranger approaches, and we think he is our brother, and all conflicts disappear, that is the moment when night ends and day begins.’
(From, ‘ Like the flowing river’ by Paulo Coelho)
‘You can give a fool a thousand intellects, but the only one he will want is yours,’ says an Arabic proverb. When we start planting the garden of our life, we glance to one side and notice our neighbour is there, spying. He himself is incapable of growing anything, but he likes to give advice on when to sow actions, when to fertilize thoughts, and when to water achievements.
If we listen to what this neighbour is saying, we will end up working for him, and the garden of our life will be our neighbour’s idea. We will forget about the earth that we cultivated with so much sweat and fertilized with so many blessings. We will forget that each centimetre of the earth has its mysteries that only the patient hand of the gardener can decipher. We will no longer pay attention to the sun, the rain, and the seasons; we will only concentrate instead on that head peering at us over the hedge.
The fool who loves giving advice on our garden never tends his own plants at all.
(From, ‘ Like the Flowing River’, by Paulo Coelho)
Jonathan Seagull spent his days alone, but he flew way out beyond the far Cliffs. His one sorrow was not solitude, it was that the other gulls refused to believe the glory of flight that awaited them; they refused to open their eyes and see.
He learned more each day. He learned that streamlined high – speed dive could bring him to find the rare and tasty fish that schooled ten feet below the surface of the ocean: he no longer needed fishing boats and stale bread for survival. He learned to sleep in the air, setting a course at night across the offshore wind, covering a hundred miles from sunset to sunrise. With the same inner control, he flew through heavy sea fogs and climbed above them into the dazzling clear skies….. in the very times when every other gull stood on the ground, knowing nothing but mist and rain. He learned to ride high winds far inland, to dine there on delicate insects.
What he had once hoped for the Flock, he now gained for himself alone; he learned to fly, and was not sorry for the price that he had paid. Jonathan Seagull discovered that boredom and fear and anger are the reasons that a gull’s life is so short, and with these gone from his thought, he lived a long fine life indeed.
(From, Jonathan Livingston Seagull a story, by Richard Bach….. the most celebrated fable of our time)
A meeting in the house of Sao Paulo – born painter based in New York. We are talking about angels, and about alchemy. At one point, I try to explain to the other guests the alchemical idea that each of us contains the whole universe and that we are, therefore, responsible for its well – being. I struggle to find the right words, but cannot come up with a good image that will explain my point of view.
The painter, who has been listening in silence, asks everyone to look out of the window of his studio.
‘What can you see?’ he asks.
‘A Street in Greenwich Village,’ someone replies.
The painter sticks a piece of paper over the window so that the street can no longer be seen; then, with a penknife, he cuts a small square in the paper.
‘And if someone were to look through there, what would he see?’
‘The same street,’ comes the reply.
The painter cuts several squares in the paper.
‘just as each of these holes contains within it the whole view of the same street, so each of us contains in our soul the same universe,’ he says.
And all of us applaud the lovely image he has found.
(From, Like the flowing River by Paulo Coelho)
My book “Aleph” describes my spiritual journey during my crossing of Asia in 2006. To write it, I had to consult the notes I had taken throughout my journey. Below there are two of them:
I arrived at the wagon that will carry me to the Siberian with my arms full of books, thinking I would have plenty of time over the 9228 km of rail travel to read them all. I soon discovered, however, that reading on a wagon is virtually impossible due to the swaying and lack of shock absorbers. The only thing I could do was think, and quickly write down my thoughts once we stopped at the stations.
One of the people on the train shows me a prayer that she said was found among the personal belongings of a Jew who died in a concentration camp. It read:
“Lord, when you come in Your glory, do not remember only the men of goodwill; also remember the men of ill will. And, on Judgment Day, do not remember only the cruelty, abuse and violence that they carried out, but the fruit produced because of what they did to us. Remember the patience, courage, brotherhood, humility, generosity of spirit and faithfulness that our executioners awoke in our souls. And then, Lord, pray that the fruits that we have produced may serve to save the souls of men of evil.”
(From Paulo Coelho)