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Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Carry on living with whatever is, just the way it is!

Life is full of ironies, full of imperfections – don’t seek clarity, don’t search for meaning, just live in the moment with whatever is.

The Week magazine, in their latest issue, have run a cover story on celebrity love children – those born outside of marriage, and from an affair, that celebrities have had. The story features Masaba Gupta (Neena Gupta and Sir Vivian Richards), Prateik Babbar (Smita Patil and Raj Babbar), Aatish Taseer (Tavleen Singh and the late Pakistani businessman and politician who was assassinated in 2011) and Rohit Shekar (Ujjwala Sharma and N.D.Tiwari). While all these people have made peace with their ‘unconventional’ identity, there is an emotional, unstated, underpinning to the story. All of them seem to be asking: ‘why do we have to be judged this way?’ I totally understand that sentiment. Fundamentally, any social norm that labels and categorizes people must be expunged. If you view Life objectively, aren’t all children – all of humanity in fact – born as ‘love children’? The act of making love, having sex, that furthers procreation, is the same among our species. In a way, it is the same biological process that has caused all our existence. So, why label one set of progeny as inferior and another as superior just because the other has come out of a socially acceptable arrangement a.k.a marriage? The best way to deal with such an irony – where you are judged for no fault of yours by those who have no role or business to judge in the first place – is to simply be who you are. As Masaba Gupta told The Week’s Shweta Thakur Nanda, Yes I am a love child. So what are you going to do? Eat me up?

Let’s face it. Life is full of imperfections. And ironies. Many a time you are confronted with situations that you did not cause or create. Yet, you have no choice but to live with them. You can’t understand why things are the way they are, you can’t explain the why of whatever is that you are dealing with and, often times, you simply can’t make meaning out of Life.

I talk here also from my personal experience. I have no explanation for why my mother called me a cheat or why my siblings remain estranged from me or why I can’t interact with my father although we all live in the same city (‘Fall Like A Rose Petal – A father’s lessons on how to be happy and content while living without money’; Westland – August 2014). My faulty decision to borrow from the family, my enduring bankruptcy and poor chemistry with my mother have confounded an already vitiated environment. Things have now reached a point where unless I return the money I owe the family, none of them is going to – or perhaps is even willing to – have anything to do with me. As long as I tried to convince my family that I have integrity and the intent to repay, that I meant well, that I am a victim of circumstance (some of it caused by my poor decisions), I suffered. Because they just refused to believe me. As long as I wished that I was understood by them, and not judged, I grieved. But when I gave up all efforts to convince my family and stopped craving that I be understood by them, my suffering ended.

I am reminded of the way Osho, the Master, explains Krishna’s conversation with Arjuna in the Bhagavad Gita: “Don’t think of the result at all. It is a message of tremendous beauty and significance and truth. Don’t think of the result at all. Just do what you are doing with your totality. Get lost in it, lose the doer in the doing. Don’t ‘be’– let your creative energies flow unhindered. That’s why Krishna said to Arjuna: ‘Don’t escape from the war… because I can see this escape is just an ego trip. The way you are talking simply shows that you are calculating, you are thinking that by escaping from the war you will become a great saint. Rather than surrendering to the whole, you are taking yourself too seriously– as if there will be no war if you are not there.’ Krishna says to Arjuna, ‘Just be in a state of let-go. Say to existence, ‘Use me in whatever way you want to use me. I am available, unconditionally available.’ Then whatsoever happens through you will have a great authenticity about it. It will have intensity, it will have depth. It will have the impact of the eternal on it.’"  

If you look at your Life deeply, just the way it is, it is so beautiful. So, don’t try to escape the ironies and imperfections of your Life. Just be in a state of let-go. Whatever is happening to you, let it happen. Don’t resist. Don’t analyze. Don’t wish it were different. Let Life use you the way it deems fit. Whether you are labeled a love child or a cheat has no relevance to who you truly are. You are who you believe you are. So, carry on living, being available, unconditionally available to Life, with whatever is, just the way it is! 

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