At our home we have some extremes in both Materialism and spirituality. The kids are too materialistic wanting to own everything they see on the net and my Grand Mom is spiritual to the max. And we co exist. Is it possible that Materialism and Spirituality can co exist? Yes, depending on what you mean of spirituality. For me Spirituality is humanity. I learned this from my Grand Father. This means – apart from looking after your family, you should look after others who are not as fortunate as you are. I have never forgotten one statement my grandfather used to say – “Jo deta hai woh pata hai” ( in English – “One who gives , always gets” – I am not sure if I translated it exactly from Hindi). He was never very religious. He always used to say , “Help others even if at the cost of some sacrifice , that’s why we are in this world”.
His words and lessons are a challenge to me. I have always believed in the Supreme being, the one who guides us. HE has bought us in this world and HE will take us away. Only Karma is what we can do. As Babuji ( that’s what we called him) I am also not very religious. I rarely go to temples though I do my prayers – may be for a minute in the morning and before I go to bed. I also don’t believe in organised religion. I don’t expect my kids to follow the religion I follow. It will never bother me if they choose not to be religious. I believe religion is man made. I don’t need religion to be good. I try to do in my humble way what ever good I can do for the people through money, time or counselling. I am not sure if you guys have heard about the “two percent club” located at Denver where all the members are committed to donate minimum 2 % of there revenue every year in the form of cash or kind. That’s a wonderful commitment towards the needy. I am sure all these guys who do this charity like materialistic things also. I believe there is no harm in trying things “so called materialistic”. To follow spirituality I believe I don’t have to be away from materialism and vice versa. The best path is the middle one – away from both the extremes. I firmly believe materialism and spirituality can go together hand in hand. You don’t have to leave worldly pleasure and go in search of spirituality. What I see of the Pope – he leaves in opulence – so much Gold, pearls, velvet etc. Yet he is so spiritual. Connected to the Almighty.
This is what Babuji believed in. I remember Babuji telling me one day to make a Guru for myself – some one who will show me the path in my life- I told him when I have you as my Grandfather, I don’t need to go to a Guru. All his words and acts were that of wisdom. Babuji always said that Ego is the root of materialism. If Ego is put on hold , the spirit has more space to move around.You can clearly hear your spirit when the Ego is not making noise and is kept silent in one corner. Hope I can follow his this advice.
I know I will be very successful in my life and career if I am able to follow some of his ways and style. Miss u Babuji.