Look Within and Listen to the Inner Voice
We live in a world where we look everywhere for solutions, for problem creators, for literally everything everywhere except within. Sometimes I have found my students feeling shy in telling that they meditate as they would become a butt of jokes among their peers. When I conducted a learning styles test and found that three students in the class of thirty had intrapersonal styles, I briefly talked about spiritual tools like meditation, how society needs them badly and how one can even make money ethically by teaching such practices. The three students who had intra personal styles were hanging their heads in shame while the other students remarked that they could become some Baba (saint).
The truth is often bitter and let us accept this bitter truth. While the elite of the western as well as eastern world is slowly accepting spirituality, the middle class still considers it as an aberration and exception. If there is something close to panacea to cure most of the social ills, it is meditation and spirituality and in fact meditation can be introduced right at the school level and can be very helpful in improving the overall personality of the person.
Stephen Covey, one of the 25 most influential Americans also talks of spirituality and says, “Educate and obey your conscience. Educating as I speak of it here involves getting into the sacred literature of all the great traditions that have had enduring value and then consciously living true to what you have learned.” Though spirituality definitely focuses on the soul but it understands the holistic nature of it and hence consider mind, body and heart equally important. Covey adds, “To me spirituality is three things. First of all you are dealing with the whole person. That includes the person’s spirit or soul. You cannot separate their body or their mind or their heart from their spirit, because they are all so inter-related and there is a synergistic relationship between all these four dimensions of our nature.”
In Chinese there is a proverb, “First know and help yourself, then your family, then your village and then your country.” Spirituality is a deep inner search for a fuller personal integration with a transcendent greater than our narrow self and the best way to that is to look within, to isolate that small inner voice from the chatter of the mind and start listening to it.
There is a practice similar to meditation among Jesuits which is called discernment. It is learning to quieten the mind and get into deep inner self. Then one is able to listen to the voice of God which guides the spirit to give signals for the path ahead. Anand Pillai of HCL India says, “Our self worth comes in being who we are, not in doing what we do, not in achieving what we achieve, not in having what we have. Spiritual Quotient (SQ measures the extent that you do what you do because of who you are, not because of your nationality or title or position in life.”
Dr AK Chattopadhyay says, “Spirituality is when I look at myself, look within and not outside and respond from my inner feelings, where we are all perfect beings.” He adds, “If I am here, I have a purpose to serve; God has created me not to just hover around and do nothing. There is some superpower that creates things in a systematic and organized manner and I can alin my thoughts with this.”
Dr Chattopadhyay talks of a incident where he won the trust of the workers to an extent where the workers trusted management more than the union leaders and senior management became the workers leadership too.
Such is the power of spirituality (if we could just look within and listen to that small voice), don’t feel a need to say more.
The article is a part of the Leading with Spirituality series on Spiritual Lounge e-magazine. To see the archives, download the e-magazine from here:-http://spirituallounge.whitedrums.com/