Guava flavoured break

22 Feb

Just because I took a break today and ate two guavas I get to call today a guava-flavoured break, right? Ofcourse I do.

Now why did I take a break? Or, more importantly, why did I take a *break* when technically last week and this week have been peppered with breaks (aka Prof. suddenly leaves for an outstation seminar thereby freeing up two days worth of intense classes for two weeks)? Well, to answer that question, I have to first begin by saying that spiritual journeys are hard. Or atleast, it is for me.

There are periods when I am filled with love for God, when just sitting in class or a bus I go into a rapture of love and bliss, knowing that this love is but a tiny, TINY part of the kind of love that we’ve been given by the Supreme Being, that it’s a mere fraction of what I shall feel for the Supreme Being the more I go on uncovering the peels of delusion that coat my human body.

That is how I want to be all the time. But I am not. I get caught up in my existance, the mundane details of the everyday that loom disproportionately on the importance-to-my-life scale (will I get the guide I want? Will I have change for the bus? Will I finish my readings on time? Will I ever publish a paper? Do I want to? etc. )and I can’t feel that intense divine love for a bit. I still know why I exist, what I intend to use my life for (the purpose of the Supreme Being, whatever it may be) but I don’t feel it in my bones as strongly. I am more prone to doubts (about choices I make, attitudes I adopt), more prone to not being at peace in the moment.

I know-from the words of the holy ones-that the spiritual journey is peppered with hardship and distraction in the early stages. And that it is important to plough on. The initial rewards of meditation are big and encouraging: and then you hit a plateau; it’s hard to concentrate, it’s hard to meditate, it’s hard to remember why you love God and Truth more than the playacting that life is. The interpretation of the Gita that I’m reading says that God is supposed to be testing the strength of your determination for self-realisation and God-realisation at this point. It is important to be patient and continue to meditate, because even when you feel that nothing is happening- no flashing lights, no vibrating head, no whatever-it-is-that-you-see-when-you-meditate- you are taking steps in that spiritual journey and you are evolving.

I wonder if this makes me sound as if I’m serious enough about meditation to actually meditate everyday. I wish I’d reached the maturity and self-discipline to do so, but no. I’m a very sporadic meditator with a sincere hope of becoming more regular. Regular meditation is not just a matter of chalking out a schedule and sitting down at 7PM everyday. Or maybe it is, who knows. But my understanding so far is that it comes with other things: one’s whole life has to evolve in a particular manner (healthy eating, healthy body, for starters). Or maybe it’s a chicken and egg situation.

My friend told me something interesting a while back: she emailed me after a week or so of starting yoga saying that she had now starting craving fresh fruits and yogurt as a result of the yoga. The body was reworking what its taste buds got turned on by because of Yoga. How cool was that? 😀 I never realised this could happen. I ate a LOT of bananas (and oranges) on the Wayanad trip earlier this year, and got teased mercilessly by my friends :P, and I never would have imagined that a part of that might have been my body asking for what it needs. Again, I’m not super regular on the yoga front, but right around that time I was managing thrice weekly for two weeks. Yes, even one session of yoga does crazy things for me.

I’m a naturally off-centre person- I’m not one of those eternally cheerful kind of people, I would never describe myself as the light, bright and sparkling kinds. But the good part is, my system is very responsive to positive change- physical and spiritual. And sometimes I need time to reflect on how far I’ve fallen off my spiritual goal to get back onto the wagon.

Today was reflection day. I didn’t have class, and planned on making my weekly/twice-weekly (depending on class schedule) trip to the Yogoda Math in Dakshineshwar. I’ve been visiting the YSS fairly frequently since January because I find it to be a great place for me to meditate. It’s helped my meditation and I feel strongly that I need to be there. But I don’t want to fetishize either the YSS or the reason I make that journey. I don’t want it to become mechanical, I don’t want it to lose it’s magic. I want to make it in the peace of the moment rather than as a part of my itenerary. I don’t want the journey to become the focal point of my spiritual efforts: I’d like it to be an aid. I don’t want it to become an excuse for me to not meditate if that routine gets disrupted.

So today I woke up and realised I would not go, and stay home and reflect on the truth of the words that a spiritual journey is hard. I need to acknowledge it and persevere nonetheless and not fight it and delude myself.

I just chilled at home. Didn’t put any pressure of any sort on myself and refused to feel guilty for not studying or not not wasting time. I do need to read for class tomorrow, but the readings are so interesting I’m not worried about needing to prod my eyelids open to keep from falling asleep over them.

The next few weeks will be interesting. My cousin’s getting married (which I’m excited about not because I find marriage the least bit interesting, but because I’ll get to meet family and extended family), the prof will be back with his killer lectures and I’ll  be volunteer editing at a feminist blog. I’ll also be doing posts for them which I’m very excited about, as this will be a totally new thing in my life.

I have SO much respect for people with family responsibilities who choose to go to school and work at a degree. Or even people who work their way through education. I have no idea how they manage that.

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2 Responses to “Guava flavoured break”

  1. Subhan Zein March 18, 2012 at 1:19 pm #

    I need guava too! 🙂

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. In Calcutta, a student. - February 25, 2014

    […] as I had to remind myself two years ago, I have to remind myself again: spiritual journeys are […]

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