Let’s talk Spirituality
One of my school friends called me the other day, and in-between conversations told me that he had seen one of my videos where I am responding to questions on spirituality. As is with school friends who can call our bluff since they know us before we were anything boast-worthy, he chuckled that since I had everything, wasn’t it was easy for me to preach spirituality? A highly successful individual himself, he went on to recount the many times from our youth where I was an aggressive sales advocate and marketer who wanted to achieve a lot in life. He was somewhat different in his approach, the kind who was a lot calm-headed since the beginning yet relentless to achieve his goals. I laughed back. It is easy to be judged of personality subterfuge when we are on different journeys. Even more so if we are perceived to be successful on the worldly metrics. With him, I knew it was going to be another prolonged discussion on our individual experiences, but by now, I am used to being questioned on my spirituality by random strangers too. Most of this arises since today as several of us aren’t in touch of our spiritual core and restrict it to the vairagi or to the reclusive monks, priests, pundits. Somehow it is hard to fathom spirituality with success or spirituality with those who are high achievers. Somehow it is not for the worldly, realists anymore.
But I believe, spirituality at its core is a very simple concept. If we are able to leave the world a better place than when we arrived – we would have delivered on our spirituality quotient.
In a world where we discuss IQ and EQ as the basis metrics of successfully navigating life, a look into our spirituality quotient or SQ can be a lot rewarding. If we are able to assign a higher value, meaning and purpose to our daily activities, our decisions, our behavior and our habits – we would have evolved ourselves at the SQ. While the other quotients give us a metrics of success, SQ offers us a sense of fulfillment. Success is quite out-worldly hence one might never have enough, but fulfillment – it is very individualistic as we ourselves are the sole judges of it. Seeking fulfillment is for everyone whether a foreman or a CEO, whether a man or a woman, a child or a septuagenarian. But if one is a leader, then being a spiritual seeker is a boon to the community as a whole. This is because knowing oneself is the first step for the seeker. This brings about a lot of self-awareness – a recognition about “What do I live for? What can I die for? What do I care the most about?” This recognition helps us to be authentic towards ourselves which in-turn leads us to take responsibility towards our actions by practicing self-discipline and self – control.
Once we realize our own self, and our oneness with all that is, the realization of our oneness with the people whom we consider our enemies, our competition, our oppressors strikes us. Don’t get me wrong, it would not make us any less fierce, instead the exact opposite happens. The understanding of oneness, separates us from them, separates us from loving our opinions more than theirs. We get the stoic strength to rise above our challenges. We realize disagreements are not threats to our existence but are opportunities that help us rewire our thoughts, challenge our pre-conceived notions and question our perceptions. We learn. We grow. We celebrate our diversity. We better ourselves with everything that comes our way. And once we have heard them all, considered the opinions of others, it also gives us the stoic strength to stand by what we believe in, even if it is against the popular opinion. This willingness to go at it alone, is also a gift of leading a spiritually aware life. While this willingness can breed arrogance for the uninitiated, as spiritually aware beings we do so in humility. Humility makes us realize that we are merely one of the players in the cosmic game, both significant and magnificent, but neither exclusive, nor more significant than the other. Humility makes us great, it makes us share, it makes us care. It also helps us to step back and look at the bigger picture. We are more tolerant towards others, and even more towards our own mistakes. It makes us own and accept them with more poise and calm dignity.
While we are at it, we become aware that adversities and suffering are inevitable. We also start acknowledging the positive aspects of going through an adversity – the pressure polishes us. It makes us stronger, braver and wiser. With this wisdom we start associating ourselves to a higher purpose. We realize that we are not here merely for the materialistic gains rather to serve a purpose. This helps us approach our profession, our vocations not merely with a desire to generate wealth but also to share our talents, our opportunities, our assets for the greater good of the community and the world. Wherever we are, in whatever capacities, we start to acknowledge the fact that even the smallest of contributions have a butterfly effect. Genuine kindness & compassion is divine, and gives us genuine contentment. While some of us realize it early on in our lives, some conquer the world to understand its futility to finally land upon this realization.
Either way, each of us have our own journeys. With spiritual wisdom comes the gift of non-judgment. While my friend and I deliberated on the years gone by, and our evolution over the decades we also realized the vastly different journeys we both took to arrive more or less at the same universal conclusions. Together we realized that beyond a certain point, materialism stops to have its significance and one starts to seek things that offer fulfillment beyond the populist agenda. If you have reached this far of my blog, am sure you are already on this journey, albeit ahead of me in terms of your spirituality quotient despite the differences in our ages, vocations, social standing. I hope our spirituality helps us all realize and encourage our oneness, during times when we are forced to put ourselves in boxes of segregation, superiority and separateness.
I hope we embrace our spirituality as our strength, and sprinkle its effects around like confetti!
About the author
Tapan Singhel is the MD & CEO of Bajaj Allianz General Insurance Company Limited. This blog has been initiated by him so that he can directly interact with all the valuable customers and employees of this company.