Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Chapter 2 Verse 12

Chapter 2, Verse 12

"Because we all have been for all time,
I, and you, and these kings of men.
We shall all be for all time,
We all, for ever and ever."

Sri Eknath Easwaran:

Looking at Arjuna compassionately, Krishna says in so many words, 'You have always been and you will always be.' This is the realization we will make in life…we have an immortal spark within, which we can fan through our attitudes and our practices. It is into this experiential discovery that we shall move in the course of our meditation. As our meditation deepens, we shall find that we are delivered from time into the eternal now."

Sri Aurobindo:

“One thing only is the truth in which we have to live, the eternal manifesting itself as the soul in the great cycle of its pilgrimage with birth and death for milestones, with worlds beyond as resting-places, with all the circumstances of life happy or unhappy as the means of our progress and with immortality as the home in which pure consciousness ever resides.”

Ram Dass:

“Philosophical materialism is the idea that reality is limited to what we perceive through our senses. If something cannot be seen, smelled, tasted, heard, or touched with our physical bodies, or measured by experimental means in a laboratory, materialism posits that it does not exist except as a creation of the mind. In our culture we use science as our bottom line, our gauge for determining what is real and what is not. Though it is common knowledge in spiritual cultures that the mind cannot measure phenomena that exist beyond the mind, our culture tends to disregard the possibility that there is any reality beyond our senses. ‘Show me,’ we say, ‘and then I’ll believe it.’

What pervades Indian culture is the understanding that the soul continues after death. The Atman is God, the awareness in which the soul yearns to abide. This non-physical, non-material aspect of human life is as real to Indians of various faiths as are their bodies and minds, which leads them to view death not as the end of the road, but as a point of transition, and their physical lives as a stage in the ongoing journey of the soul towards Self-realization.

Metaphysical awareness helps to reduce the stress of our twin nemeses: the compulsion to ‘have it all’ now, and the desperate clinging to things of the past, including our youth. Emphasis is placed on eternal matters, which relieves the suffering of fighting against the natural course of things. And because the goal is God, rather than thin thighs, fabulous pensions, and geriatric erections, the old in India enjoy a peace, after the storms of youth, that is largely unknown to aging Americans. Many of us spend our lives worrying about losing what we have. Old age offers the opportunity to shift our cares away from the physical towards what cannot be taken away: our wisdom and the love we offer to those around us.”

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