Truth! What is the truth of life? Karma theory? perhaps. But the demise of a close relative this week has reminded me once again of a far greater and immediate truth. That we are pawns in the greater scheme of things. All hopes,dreams, ambitions, plans – everything, even the relations – father, mother, siblings, children, spouse, feelings – joy, love, hatred, jealousy, anger, ego – everything seems so meaningless, paltry, tiny, petty in the face of the fact that we don’t have control over our lives. At the end of the day – rather at the end of one’s life or quite often, even while living it, one is alone in essence. All the riches, all the pleasures, the relations, the affection – all of it loses relevance the moment you cease to exist. Sure, you’ll leave behind a legacy, heirs, riches etc – but you’d have gone through agony, frustrations, struggles to achieve it and only to conclude that it suddenly doesn’t matter anymore….So what do we plan for then? what do we dream for? why do we nurse an ambition? what is the purpose of all this?
That a man may propose lots, but the God may dispose without mercy. A minute one may plan to experience the greatest pleasure of life and the next moment he may not exist anymore…
I remember the teachings of Vipassana course that I took almost 5 years back,out of sheer curiosity. 10 days full of rigorous meditation – in a secluded place, right from 4 am in the morning till 8 pm at night. I followed it to the T. For 10 days, I did not speak with anyone, except with my instructor, once in a day! What an experience it was….at the end of it, I was convinced that the teachings WOULD work, should a person practise the type of meditation regularly. Well, the goal of Vipassana was to reach and remain in zero state of mind.
Zero state of being! what would it be? the experience of a moment extended through the practice of life time! A state of mind with no negatives….and likewise, no positives either! a phase of time with no fears, sorrows, anger and likewise no laughter, hopes or love… a vacuum perhaps?? devoid of ‘feelings’? That is why timeless state of being! Feelings are always with reference to some event in time – past-present-future – and one’s reaction to it! So zero state of being must be timeless experience.I cannot say that I havent experienced it. During the course of Vipassana, I had smallish glimpses now and then, into the world of quiet. But the moment I was out of that cocoon of seclusion and into the madness of day-to-day life, I unlearned most of the technique as I did not practise it much. Now I’d need some help to remember how to even begin.
I remember and still believe its teachings though, having experienced their effect firsthand during the 10 day course.One of which is practising zero state of being.Detachment.Letting go of hatred, anger, fear, negativity – likewise, letting go of attachments, love, affection, positivity – because emotions and feelings – positive and negative are the causes of deepest sorrows. I have always believed that the deepest sorrow must be following the greatest experience of pleasure.Because it will be similar to hitting bottom after you’ve sprung to the greatest height. That to experience pleasures, one must make oneself vulnerable even to deepest sorrows.
As a being who wishes from time to time to experience it all, I tell myself that pleasure and pain would be part of life.But the losses experienced lead me to realise time and again that the cost of pleasure, planning, ambitions, ego etc would be measured in pain, sorrow, hatred…that I must submit, surrender to the greater force and try – not to get attached – to any thing – place – person – emotion – thought. Positively or negatively. Life is a zero sum game.Though it cannot be explained in a single lifetime. The Karma prevails…..