D r e a m S p a r k l e
Volume 1, Number 2
SADHA - Part 2
Sadha woke up as usual at 4 Am. It was a habit he had religiously developed in the last few years. He came to know from the Hindu scripture that the period between 4 am and 6 am was filled with positive spiritual energies and therefore ideal for meditation and spiritual contemplation. From then on, Sadha woke up to a 3:30 am alarm. He was not an easy riser, needing to just lie around lazily before he really woke up. So he set the alarm for 3.30 am and got out of bed at 4.
It was hard in the beginning, and he often rolled over and went back to sleep. He persevered, however, and slowly the plan became a routine.
This day too he got out of the bed at 4 and did his initial yoga postures. The yoga loosened his body muscles, giving his body a general wakeup call. It always worked. Ten minutes he finished his stretches he was energetic and ready for the day.
He had begun to understand that the body was of extreme importance for the spiritual journey. It was the vehicle in which he the individual lived and it was the vehicle in which his true inner personality lived and it was also the abode of the soul. That was the belief system to which he subscribed these days. He did so with reason and Logic and considered that to be the scientific reality of human existence.
He believed that the “I”, the individuality of every person, was transitory and impermanent and did not have an infinite existence, his true inner personality and the soul. The inner personality he believed was his true individuality and it owed its existence to the soul within him. The soul he considered as a clone of the ultimate consciousness, the God of religion. This he understood to be the reason why in the Hindu scriptures it was stated “Thou art That”, “That” being what Hinduism called the ultimate consciousness, “Brahman.”
Sadha took Christ's statement that “The Kingdom of heaven is within you...” to mean the same thing. The soul played no part in the experiences of the individual, but simply existed as the witness. The inner personality of the individual, he believed, mimicked the ego or the “I” of the individual, until the removal of such an illusion. As long as the true inner individuality was unknown, the illusory “I” revealed the world to the inner personality. That revelation of the world came to the inner individual through the eyes, touch, heart and brain. From birth to death in most humans the “I” (with a name and history) dictated what reality was.
Death was the end of the physical body. The “I” with the name and form and a history of relationships and experiences ceased to exist once the individual died. Sadha believed that the true inner personality left the body at death occurred, along with the soul within and all past actions (Karma) carried within it. Thus it went on to its next episode in the drama of (cyclical) birth and death. Karma decided the direction of future births for that inner being. Such was Sadha’s current understanding of human existence.
It was necessary to sort out these things in order to understand how he should direct his thinking. He was convinced he should direct his thinking towards the inner personality, but until that personality truly became him, he would use the “I” to awaken the inner being within him. He did everything with that in mind; his thought focused towards awakening the inner being. To think, act, eat, deal with the world and other necessities such as yoga, meditation, religious ritualism, etc, with only that in mind. He had to do everything based on what was favorable for the inner being’s awakening. Thus, life today for Sadha was living for his inner personality. It was a form of schizoid existence, but it did not disturb his existence in terms of practicality. Only he was responsible for that inner being, and as for the external world it was the “I”, the individual by the name “Sadha” that he still projected.
Sadha was single and today he did not have a sexual partner and for many years he had no sexual relationships. This being so, he could not confirm to himself whether this kind of a spiritual journey was possible for a married man or a person with a permanent sexual partner, let alone a man with children. Sadha was unsure whether such people could follow this path. He thought it must be difficult, because history revealed that most of those who followed this path very seriously were recluses and single. The fact that he had a very normal life and relationships with colleagues, friends, siblings and relatives made him believe at times that it was possible. Of course an individual need not reveal his true spirituality even to his partner, but the home environment needed to be conducive to the spiritual seeking of that individual. It is here that Sadha began to doubt. What if a partner was a disturbance to the spiritual search of the individual? Did he then leave everything behind and become a recluse?
There was also another dilemma. What if seeking such created moods and altered states of mind made interaction with people impossible?
In the traditional India that he grew up in and visited frequently, he did see the possibility of such serious spiritual seeking for a married man, with a family. The traditional woman, not just in India, but in any culture was molded by evolutionary design to be a perfect partner to the male of the species and this made it possible for the male to play his traditional role properly. For example in tribal cultures most of the shamans were married men with family. Still they practiced very serious mystical religion, going into trances and using mind altering substances. In spite of this they lived normal family lives with hardly any conflict. However, such conflicts were not absent within civilized societies regarding a married man's search for serious spirituality. There were many reasons for this; the partner becoming agitated and concerned about such serious spiritual seeking or the searcher becoming too engrossed in the search and neglecting the family. In Sadha's opinion, even though it was possible for a married man to seek serious spirituality, it was easier for a single man.
In traditional Indian culture, the women very rarely ventured into serious spiritual seeking, but this did not mean that there were no traditional women who were deeply involved in spirituality. On the contrary, there were many such women. They seemed to have the capability to balance both family responsibilities and the search for spirituality. The female members of Sadha's family were good examples, including and especially his mother, and maternal and paternal grandmothers. His father and his grandfathers practiced their spiritual seeking with seriousness and earnestness and his mother and grandmothers provided the necessary support. As they aged his mother and grandmothers became more and more involved in the search. Of course in such family oriented spiritual seeking it was mostly ritualistic religion that was practiced, but there was also meditation involved in such practices.
Based on all this Sadha had come to the conclusion that it was possible to seek serious spirituality as a married individual, provided the partner was accommodating to such seeking and gave the necessary support. He was also convinced that it was easier for a single person than a married man, but again, the married man had the opportunity to check his spiritual progress by observing the ways he reacted with the world around him, whereas the single man, living in isolation and as a recluse in regard to intimate human relationships, could evolve without such testing of his mental state and live in superficial belief that his mind was under control and in tranquility. Such a mind, if put to test could prove weak, filled with inner conflicts and all kinds of subdued negative mental traits. Such negativism could surface when confronted with relationships and human interactions. There were advantages and disadvantages in both approaches, but Sadha was happy with his present single state.
He acknowledged the fact that among the hippie generation that he grew up with during his involvement with the Counter Culture, there were partners evolving who were somewhat like the male-female spiritual partners described in mythologies and in the scriptures, living in spiritual hermitages, with children, but living only for the seeking of the spiritual. Sadha saw such partnerships emerging even among the followers of New Age and the Wicca religion.
Sadha’s morning routine, which can be even called a ritual, involved the moving of the bowels, which to him was very important, for the start of a good day. He believed that the bowels played a very important role in human health and their proper natural function was of utmost important for overall good health. Sadha believed that humans should empty the bowels once in the Moring and be done with it. He did notice that the one function that could go wrong in otherwise healthy humans and did so frequently was the bowel movement. Malfunction of the digestive system involving the stomach and the intestines was very common among humans. Sadha solved this problem for himself by following very strict food habits and yoga practices and regular walking, etc. He drank adequate amount of water throughout the day, drinking the maximum before noon, as his father had recommended, and never over ate. He always ate high fiber food and many vegetables, which was not onerous to him since he was a vegetarian. Today his bowels worked perfectly and he was able to empty them before taking the bath, and such emptying was a complete one for the day. That to him was an achievement, and Sadha considered any malfunction regarding his bowel movement a failure of his spiritual search itself.
He believed that once such seeking was on the right path, the body worked in perfect harmony and all organs functioned in their natural perfectness, as they were meant to. Such workings of the inner organs and the body needed human help regarding lifestyle, involving food habits, exercise and a relaxed simple lifestyle while maintaining a calm, tranquil and happy mind. Lately Sadha had added unconditional love to these requirements and therefore did not indulge in any angry or harshly critical thinking towards any person or any subject that he was exposed to. Whether it was human relationships or interactions with others, Sadha did not allow anger, frustration or harsh criticism to arise in his mind. Even in regard to what we would consider as evil, Sadha resorted to calm understanding of the situation and used the necessary mental and other disciplines to avoid such evil, without involving any anger or frustration or violent thoughts in regard to such avoidance, Even if he opposed such behavior among those he interacted with, he did so calmly and in a tranquil manner.
There was only one purpose for all this discipline as far as Sadha was concerned. He was of the opinion that the serious spiritual seeker, once firmly on the path, should not fall ill and his body and organs should function in natural perfectness, as they were designed to. He also believed that the mind of such a person should be naturally perfect regarding the ideal model required. It should not take any effort to be so and should occur instinctively as the person’s very natural state of mind. He came to this conclusion mainly after reading a hymn sung by the Tamil saint Thirunavukarsar. Thirunavukarasar (திருநாவுக்கரசர்) lived in seventh century AD and once the king summoned him to the court to be questioned over certain accusations that his enemies had levied against him. When the guards came to summon him, he sang this hymn and asked the guards to convey it to the king:
He used the word “we” to denote those who, like himself, were on the spiritual path.
We are the subject of no kingdom
We fear no death
We will not suffer the pangs of hell
We will not cheat (be unethical)
We will not suffer any disease
And we will not bow down to tyranny.
This hymn convinced Sadha that once the spiritual seeker was firmly on the path, all such things fell into place, even without any effort from the seeker. He believed that a natural and spiritual lifestyle could prevent disease permanently and this hymn confirmed it. He considered as spiritual political statements, “We are the subject of no kingdom,” and “We will not bow down to tyranny,” both of which were contemporary to the liberal and progressive politics that he professed. He considered serious spirituality as being related to progressive politics and that without serious spirituality, such progressive politics would not manifest itself fully and be ineffective against the evil it was supposed to oppose.
Today Sadha experienced good health and his lifestyle emphasized his