Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Hindu View of Life -12

Shri Guruji's personality was essentially spiritual. Naturally, his outlook on every subject had the spiritual orientation. The spiritual enlightenment, which pervaded his whole life, was the result of intense Swadhyaya and Sadhana. But, he never gave spiritual discourses or even answered questions on spirituality or spiritual experiences. Only people very close and intimate with him could get occasional glimpses of his Sadhana or Siddhi. But, people in the spiritual field and those who were heads of spiritual institutions were aware of this dimension of Shri Guruji, which he zealously kept away from the public gaze.

Such people had a high esteem of Shri Guruji's attainments, so much so that when the Peetha of Sankaracharya of Dwaraka fell vacant and had no immediate successor, the name that was suggested by the concerned people was that of Shri Guruji. They wrote to him imploring to accept the great seat. Nobody had any doubt about Shri Guruji's spiritual qualification for the high office. But Shri Guruji politely turned down the offer on the ground of his being too small and instead suggested the name of a person who according to Shri Guruji was qualified enough. The suggestion was accepted.

Shri Guruji's views on religion was truly in the Hindu tradition, reestablished and reinstated by the Sri Ramakrishna Vivekananda order. Contrary to the image that is sought to be given to Shri Guruji by vested interests, Shri Guruji was no fanatic, because Hinduism by its very nature is liberal and inclusive. It had no difficulty in accepting the validity of any form of faith or religion so long as it catered to the moral and spiritual evolution of its followers.

Even the attitude of certain religions, which claim exclusive possession of the ultimate truth, can be understood so long as it does not impinge on the religious freedom of others who hold a contrary belief. What is objectionable is deliberate, organized effort to impose one's religion upon others. This was Shri Guruji's attitude also. "We Hindus believe that each individual can worship the Form of his choice in his own way. All can attain Him-if the effort be sincere and honest. And that is why Hinduism is not a proselytizing religion. The very idea of conversion starts with the assumption that mine is the only sure and correct way and all others must be converted to it. Do you believe in this? This, if said in respect of attainment of God, will be speaking too low of Him. In fact in Hinduism we not only tolerate another man's religion or way of worship, but we have a respect for it. It is not 'conversion' into Hinduism. It is only giving an opportunity for those who had been made to change the faith by force of circumstances in the past, to return to their ancestral faith. Is it not a fact that only a handful of Muslims came to our country from outside? All the rest have only changed their faith for well-known reasons. Returning to one's ancestral faith is not conversion at all, it is merely home-coming". 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        .....Sri P Parameswaran ji...contd....