This beautiful, blue marble of a planet is racing through space with great dignity. Do we match it in dignity and deserve to belong to this planet? Obviously, we don’t! The reasons are clear too. Can we bring in a new dimension to this scenario?

The writer has participated in discussions on this issue at such places as the Vasanth Vihar (Krishnamurti Foundation India) and the Adyar Theosophical Society, Chennai, India.

Reflective people do see the need for radical transformation in human beings from the conventional approaches. They also see that it has to begin in each one of us without expecting it to transpire from some imaginary source outside of us. The same feelings were expressed at the 2011 annual conference of the International Association for Near death Studies, Durham, NC, USA. Death serves as a great reminder of the capacity that we have for unqualified compassion towards all, free from any group identification. A lady said, “If I am told I have only a day to live, I will use that day to make up with every one that I had quarreled with and sincerely wish them well for the rest of their lives.” Can that spirit prevail in us in our normal life?

If we look at the degradation of human conduct in terms of the abominable killing of themselves and of their animal brethren, the situation is far from satisfactory. While it is possible to have a very caring humanity that respects all living beings and the environment, what is happening is, obviously, a far cry. We can do something about it if we understand what it is for us to strike a new trail and not fall along the conventional path – the path of self-serving attitudes governed by mindless competition and ruthlessness.

The fundamental reason for the sad state of affairs is the fact that the vast majority of human beings is living at the surface flutter of consciousness and rarely, if at all, senses the beauty of its deeper contents. The externalization of the mind through indulgence in the conventional values is sweeping across humanity and people fall an easy prey to that wave. The merely excitement-oriented cultures cannot but succumb to it. The practice of religions too toes the same line and feeds the ego. Once we sense this, we begin to veer away from the well trodden trail and strike a new one. This does not mean that we shirk our responsibilities or antagonize anyone. It means that we no longer run with the crowd but take stock of ourselves and observe matters from insightful perspectives.

The primary factor here is the deepening self-awareness whose essential by-product is the unqualified compassion and the feeling of sacredness in all relationship. This is where paranormal phenomena can also help us as one area of potent forces among other things.

A practical issue that can assist us in this matter is the sensing of the difference between joy and satisfaction. The primary difference between them is to be seen in the fact that while satisfaction is largely ego driven, joy is only marginally touched by it; joy implies the participation of the soul. To be in a job that one loves to do is to value joy over satisfaction, the latter being based on chasing money or other ego-based values. There are similar issues for reflection and self-transformation towards a holistic life. Once we see the soul-value behind joy, we automatically strike a new trail for ourselves and no longer feed the collective consciousness with the values that degrade human beings.

The eagerness to understand what lies beyond the conventional activities is the starting point for striking a new trail. Watching a street brawl, reading a poem or watching oneself in argument with somebody – any of these can be a starting point for flowing inward and releasing oneself from the conventional rut into which millions have fallen due to self-centered thought. It is to be noted that group psychology is different from mob psychology only in degree, not in kind. The following lines from the book “Krishnamurti’s Journal” published by Krishnamurti Foundation India bring up some vital issues to be reflected upon.

“The tears of mankind have not washed away man’s desire to kill. No religion has stopped war. All of them, on the contrary, have encouraged it, blessed the weapons of war. They have divided the people. Governments are isolated and cherish their insularity. The scientists are supported by Governments. The preacher is lost in his words and images.

“You will cry, but educate your children to kill and be killed. You accept it as the way of life; your commitment is to your own security; it is your god and your sorrow. You care for your children so carefully, so generously, but then you are so enthusiastically willing for them to be killed. They showed on the screen baby seals, with enormous eyes, being killed.”

Do we want to be part of this thoughtless and callous rigmarole? Insightful people sense a seriousness about making a clarion call to people reminding them of the madness in which humanity is caught. They realize simultaneously the need for the transformation in themselves so that they can convey the non-verbal essence of it to others. That is when they see the greatness of joy as a transformer in contrast to the demand for satisfaction as a destroyer. Once on this trail, life becomes enriched for oneself and others. People drawn to the issue of inner transformation will find a wayside companion in the website

Author's Bio: 

Gopalakrishnan TC received his doctoral degree in Coastal Engineering from the North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC, USA in 1978. He served on the research and teaching faculty of the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, India, the North Carolina State University and the Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research, Kuwait.

Aside from his professional involvements, he was interested in the philosophic issues of life for the last forty years or so. This led him to the messages of Ramana Maharishi, Lao Tzu, J Krishnamurthy, UG Krishnamurthy, Nisargadatta Maharaj, Eckhart Tolle, Marcus Aurelius and similar Masters. Based on the above reflections, he brought out a book entitled “In Quest of the Deeper Self” published by the Outskirts Press Inc., Colorado. This book can serve as a way-side companion to those that would like to look at the deeper aspects of life.
Gopalakrishnan is a member of the International Association for Near Death Studies, Durham, NC, USA. He presented a paper in their annual conference of 2011, Sept. 2-4, 2012. The paper was entitled "On the Spiritual Content of Near Death Experiences". He has published a number of articles on spirituality and mental peace in magazines and article sites. He lives with his wife in Kodaikanal, a hill town in south India.
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