There is a lighthearted child in me with playfulness to enjoy small things in life, curiosity to soak up new ideas, an openness to embrace new possibilities, boundless optimism to expect positive things, and spontaneity to go with the flow of every moment of life.
I think so they are in everyone.
I grew up with the mindset to work hard, develop a meaningful career, take on challenges, and take care of my family. I learned to adapt to people and circumstances, take my fears and anxieties in strides, and cultivate the strength to weather storms that may come up. Along the way, I felt encouraged to make a difference to others in a meaningful way and enjoy my moments. My actions, mindset, thinking patterns, and outlook shaped my external identity for me. Family, friends, colleagues, customers, and others developed a perception of me. In my mind’s eye and realm, a judge crystalized, helping me discern what might help or hurt me or what is good or bad for me: this judge – that is, my ego – is on the lookout to protect my external identity.
While the ego might have helped me build and protect my external world, it is also isolating me in the cocoon of my reactive thinking patterns and not allowing me to connect with all.
I attract, connect with, create, and accumulate the energy field around me – karma. It is dictating or controlling the weather of thoughts, emotions, and fears my mind and body go through. I am accumulating it from my current as well as previous life forms. It rules my exterior world way more than my ego would like me to believe or accept.
I am the Atma – the universal consciousness – and not my mind, body, thoughts, emotions, external attachments, or ego. The Atma is universal – one connected consciousness – a space of eternal peace & bliss, boundless happiness, warmth, healing, nurture, abundance, and compassion. It is the same in all – not just human beings, but all living beings.
I read and learned that purpose of life is to identify with the Atma, see every living being also as the Atma, and realize it or merge with it. I wish there were a magic wound to detach from the material things, to get rid of my fears, let healing energy from inside do its magic to my body & mind, forget the pain from the past, heal, grow, develop, let go, and connect with all.
What’s in the way are – my ego and karma. The energy field I might have created over time wouldn’t just suddenly disappear.
I am grateful for the awareness to keep it all in perspective.
I like to think of Paryushan as an opportunity to reset my bearings. The fasting breaks the cycle, connecting with calmness and stillness from the inside. There are moments of a lull during fasting when I feel peace, happiness, and joy from inside. It clarifies my mind. It loosens up my attachment to material things.
My inspiration this year: can I identify and be with the child I am inside? Small joys put a smile on my face. I forget my fears and anxieties quickly. I enjoy small things in life, and they mean the world to me. I have a blast with friends. I am open and excited about what the next moment might bring. I am bubbling with enthusiasm. I don’t feel the need to chase anything. If I am hurt, it heals much faster. I don’t have conditions of my desires, wants, and attachments to be happy. Life is beautiful where it is, how it is. While it lasts – a few days, a few hours, or moments – I feel the Atma is permeating and healing/blessing my physical world.
ક્ષમા – Forgiveness 🙏🏽
I learn the fastest way to burn through my karma and ego is – forgiveness – ક્ષમા. There is so much medical research on how it can do wonders for my health.
I think the idea is so nuanced. I remember thinking I am not hurting anyone anyways, so why bother? The mindfulness brought in my self-awareness that currents of emotions and thinking patterns could be hurting me and all around me without realizing it. The idea drives it home even more strongly when I think of being part of the material chase and global warming that will make millions of species extinct. It is not just about humans: it is for all living beings.
My feelings can follow my actions. I look to take small, proactive steps hoping it changes my undercurrents.
I pray for openness, excitement, curiosity, and a lightness of the child I am inside to make new beginnings: I say the following in that spirit.
Michchhami Dukkadam: I beg for forgiveness for all hurt caused by me knowingly or unknowingly. 🙏🏼
મિચ્છામિ દુક્કડમ: જાણ્યે અજાણ્યે જો મારાથી કોઈ ભૂલ થઈ ગઈ હોય તો હું તમારી માફી માંગું છું. 🙏🏼