GENERATION GAP

Generation gap is a variation or contrast in thinking, attitude, and behaviour of people of different generations. This is a natural phenomenon and is bound to happen because of the changes in the living environment with the development of resources and the availability of new fields of activities all around. This gap started happening from the date the evolution of man. With every passing day, a change in attitude, behaviour, and thinking kept going on slowly and with the passing of a generation it becomes more visible.

This gap is a sign of development if it is happening on the positive side, but in case it is the other way then it is dangerous not only for the concerned person or society but for the entire humanity as a whole. The new generations must inherit positive mental attitudes and values of life from their elders. All generations, therefore, need to be very particular about passing on the family traditions, culture, and values of life to the coming generations.

History plays an important role in understanding the difference between generations, their attitudes, behaviors, and traditions. A look at the history of nations shows that there has been a lot of development in every field be it health, education, food production, defense, infrastructure, science and technology and especially, the artificial intelligence. At present, although there is hardly a dearth of anything in this world yet we find some people suffering from malnutrition, deprivation of medical facilities, shelter, education, and justice which are the basic needs of life. The gap between the rich and the poor is widening day by day. This is not because of the dearth of anything but because of a lack of basic human characteristics such as compassion COMPASSION., contentment, humanity, and love. These human values of life have always existed in races/generations but the generations failed to protect and pass them on to the future generations; as a result all the negative tendencies such as greed, hatred, bias and intolerance took over and overshadowed the basic human values of life.

The development should have made our lives comfortable but the opposite has happened. We have become slaves of this development and have no time to enjoy its benefits. The wild race for more and more possessions has eaten the priceless possession of our contentment.

At a time when the world is fast changing, the rate of widening of the generation gap is also gaining speed. It needs to to be properly channelized because the negative trend already set in the values of life may attain greater proportions and which will be responsible for the degradation of human values resulting into a narrowing of the gap between the behaviors of humans and the animals. Is that our goal?.

The generation gap exists only in humans. Animals don’t have this gap. The reason is an abundance of intellect provided to humans by nature, which they can use for their good or bad. The choice depends on the atmosphere around us. The role of elders, therefore, is to provide a good and healthy atmosphere to their younger generations.

Parents/elders, teachers(Guru)/Religious leaders as well as social and political leaders have to become a role model for the youngsters and keep a vigilant eye on their wards, students/disciples and the subjects so that they may not get led astray. Regular contact is necessary with the children especially at the present times when there are a lot of avenues available to the children for slipping into the wrong zones. The misuse of artificial intelligence such as computers, laptops, mobile phones, and the internet has resulted in stress as well as distress which can lead to depressions and sometimes addiction to drugs for relief.

A positive gap is a welcome sign but a negative one which has already started taking roots is very dangerous for society as well as for humanity as a whole. The diminishing respect in the eyes of youngsters for elders, the allurement towards intoxicants and drugs is creating a great disturbance in the societies all over the world.

Such a generation gap needs to be filled with understanding, love, compassion and great devotion by the elders, teachers and the leaders, who have to become role models and create a self-example for the coming generations or otherwise we all shall be responsible for the great destruction of values of human life leading to degradation of life values and behavior of the future races to the lower species i.e animals.

The trend of behaving like lower species of life has already knocked at our doors and has rather entered our world. The widespread of drug addiction, intolerance among races and religions, increase in criminal activities, undue anger, hate, degradation of values in politics and religion are the signs of this trend.

Every cloud has a silver lining. Still, there are families, societies, and nations which have preserved their values of life, culture, and traditions and have passed on the same to their future generations. We need to learn from them and must follow them in the overall interests of our generations.

 

 

DEEPAWALI – THE FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS.

Deepawali, the festival of lights is celebrated on a moonless dark night in the month of October or November every year in the whole world and especially in the Indian subcontinent by the Hindus, Sikhs, and people from all other religions who contribute to the celebrations in one way or the other. The festival has become more of a good business proposition than purely a spiritual activity. It is related to the return of Lord Ram, Sita Ji, and Laxman back to their home in Ayodhya from an exile of fourteen years during which period Lord Ram passed through different phases of life and established a proper code of conduct for all of us by creating self-examples and discipline of life(BURNING THE EVIL: DUSSEHRA). He himself underwent various difficulties and faced the challenges of life with maturity and with utmost wisdom thus setting examples for us as to how to face various problems and aspects of life in a balanced manner.

We learn a lot from the examples set by Lord Rama about our obligations to the society, family members including father, mother, stepmother, brothers, wife, friends, teachers(Guru), friends, supporters, disciples, true followers, opponents, and the learned persons.

His priority towards Mata Shabri who was a very poor lady from a lower caste, over the most learned and famous Rishis including the great Matang Rishi who were proud of their knowledge and wisdom, is a true example of the love of a Master towards his disciple. Out of this love, he ignored the feast arranged by the Rishis and chose to eat the wild berries collected by Mata Shabri from the forest and each one of which she had tasted to check the sweetness.

After winning the war against Ravana who was hurt and was about to die in the battlefield; Lord Rama directed his brother Laxman who was an angry young man to go to Ravana and approach him respectfully for a piece of advice based on his knowledge and wisdom because Ravana was highly intellectual and a learned person.

By this act, Lord Ram taught us that we should not be biased even against our foes and appreciate their good qualities.

He made Laxman shun his anger, pride of winning the war and hatred if any towards the defeated enemy. He taught everyone to eliminate only the evil and appreciate the virtues even that of an enemy.

During those fourteen years of exile, he faced all the good and bad events of his life with courage, faith, complete humbleness and with a balanced and positive approach. After successful completion of his exile, he returned to Ayodhya where he was greeted with lights, dances, fireworks and that day of victory and Homecoming is still celebrated in the form of Deepawali.

No one likes to remain in the darkness. Everyone wants to be in the light. One philosopher describes darkness as the absence of light. There is never an absence of light in this world. Sun gives us light during the day and the moon appears before the sun disappears and so the stars. The light is always there as The God never blinks. The problem is with our own attitude. We turn our back to the light and focus only on the darkness so remain deprived of its shine.

How desperately we long for the light but search it outwardly whereas God has kept the same within all of us. Being extroverts we can’t get in touch with this divine lamp to which some call Akhand jyot, some call it Noor-e-Haq or Sham-e-Allahi or by various other names. This lamp is within everyone. All we need is to be introverts and focus our attention within ourselves instead of allowing it to scatter it outside. The longing for this light is not only the domain of any particular religion. Every religion has appreciated this and has always been in search of this Divine light. Our various festivals and traditions are connected with the appearance of the sources of light such as fire,  stars, the moon, and the sun.  This is actually the light within which Lord Ram was greeted on his homecoming. This is the same light which Hazrat Moosa encountered at Koh-e Toor. This is the same light which we symbolize on the Shab-e- Raat or on a Christmas tree during the Christmas celebrations. All we need is to have a true Guru, a perfect Master, a Kamil Murshid and learn from Him the technique of becoming an introvert and focus our attention inwards and follow a simple and chaste lifestyle in order to achieve salvation.

We the humans too have been exiled like Lord Ram for a fixed time period i:e our lifespan, for having disobeyed God by eating the forbidden fruit. This period of exile is granted to us as a chance to purify our soul, pay for the mistakes and liberate ourselves from the shackles of wishes, anger, greed, attachment to worldly objects, and the ego/ pride. If we succeed, we will find our way back home and would be greeted with the lights which will remove all darkness from our life and liberate us from the unending cycle of birth and death thus leading us to attain Moksha, Mukti, or Najaat.

May this Diwali show us the way to the light within; the light that liberates; the light that removes all the darkness from our lives, thoughts, and the behaviors.

Wishing a very Happy Diwali to all the Readers….

HAPPINESS

Everyone in this world wants to be happy forever and for attaining happiness they resort to various practices and ways of life. Happiness is a state of mind, an aim, an essence, and in fact fragrance of the life itself. Who would not like this fragrance?. Happiness can’t be achieved in isolation as it depends upon various states of our mind functions such as level of satisfaction, stability, peace, and attitude. All these attributes or mind functions may vary from person to person and hence the level of happiness also differs from person to person despite having similar circumstances.

We do search for happiness in the possessions of wealth little realizing that even the wealthiest of all in the world are more worried than the paupers. We hope to get happiness out of high authority at our command and once we get it we realize that the authority gives more pain than the pleasures. The higher you go, you will not feel cozier, instead, you will feel cooler. ‘Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown’, is an old saying and is very true. Did the great kings or rulers had sound sleep? They were always in constant fear of being dethroned or invaded.

Happiness is therefore neither in wealth, nor in power, nor in high authority or more of possessions, because with every incremental increase in all these worldly things, a corresponding dose of fear of losing them is added to our store of worries.

To attain happiness we seem to be knocking at the wrong doors and treading a slippery path. We, therefore, need to change our attitude and way of life

Since happiness depends on our state of mind so we need to condition our mind and try to keep it stable. We need to learn from those who are happier than us and explore the causes of their happiness. We could hardly find anyone completely happy. Everyone is in search of complete happiness and he tries to derive this from different sources but each source itself is temporary and anything of temporary nature can’t provide a permanent solution for permanent happiness. The only person happier than anyone seems to be a child especially an infant. He has no worries. He gives a smile the moment anyone makes an eye contact with him. When in a mood he will not bother for anyone. He will cry when hungry and will never hide or suppress his feelings. As a child, he will be happier and more satisfied with a candy or a chocolate as his wishes and wants are limited whereas we would fail to derive the similar amount of happiness even if big fortunes are bestowed upon us.

We, on the other hand, have a lot of worries many of which we unnecessarily keep firmly attached to our mind. We are too miser in passing a smile and are biased while sharing the same. We bother too much for everything little realizing that many of them are not within our control and we are worried for them as a matter of habit. We are not open-minded and suppress our feelings. We are never contended with whatever we get and always try to have more. Our wants far exceed( LIFE ) our capacity to fulfill them thus making us unhappy. Hate, prejudice, biases, greed, fear, and feelings of insecurity and the absence of someone who could support us through thick and thin are the main causes of our worries and unhappiness. We do need someone to whom we can look for help. No one will help us without a purpose or a cost. Nothing comes free in this world then how can we expect help or support free of cost or free of an obligation?

The only ONE to whom we can trust for help and support is the CREATOR ie. our UNIVERSAL FATHER. We need to completely surrender before HIS will like a child surrenders before his mother. We must have complete faith in HIM as he will give us whatever is good for us. He will never give us anything which is not to our benefit. Pleasure or pain both come from his will, then why to worry. We should possess a helping attitude COMPASSION. towards everyone without any prejudice as it gives us a lot of satisfaction and happiness.

If there is only happiness in life throughout, we will lose its value and life would become monotonous. Some moments of worries or distress make us understand the values of happiness in a better way. So, do enjoy life with full faith in the CREATOR and always keep a positive mental attitude by avoiding every negative thought. Try to inculcate the attitude of expecting less and giving more as it will keep us more satisfied and happy. We should always think of and focus more on the good things in our life rather than paying more attention to a few worries which come in our lives in a normal routine. If we sincerely count and list out good and bad things in our life we will find that the Creator has given a lot of good things in comparison to the bad things which are very few. Since we pay more heed to and remain constantly focused on the bad things because of our negative mental attitude, so we remain unhappy. On the contrary, if we focus more on positive things in life which outnumber negative ones and ignore these negative ones, we will be happier.