Friday, 24 July 2015

Tug of War

Every other person I meet these days proclaims, "I'm spiritual," or "I'm practicing spirituality." Their claim makes me contemplate on the vast area of spirituality. How can one be a spiritual person just like that? Is it that easy? A psychologist Abraham Maslow proposed a theory (1943) named Maslow's hierarchy of needs. He mentioned five levels of human needs, and self actualization, which is closely related to spirituality, falls on the topmost level. According to him people  move towards self actualization only after they  have fulfilled other four levels of needs: physiological needs, safety needs, love/belonging and self-esteem respectively.

So, I do not stop wondering, "Have these people already fulfilled all the needs of lower levels to reach the highest level of spiritualism?" I wish I could also portray myself as a spiritual person but I cannot make this big claim about myself. My curiosity led me to observe those "spiritual" people more closely.

To my great disappointment I did not see them practicing spirituality in reality. I found them massively engaging on fulfilling their safety needs, love/belonging and self-esteem. Well, it is one thing to "hear," "read" or "know" about spiritualism, but in my understanding to be "spiritual" is completely different. A Western Hindu spiritual leader Sri Dharma Pravartaka Acharya clearly states that spiritualism is not the "accumulation of knowledge" but it is "practice" in life. One can earn a PhD degree on spiritualism but it is not necessary that the person is spiritual.

Even if it is not impossible, but extremely hard to lead a spiritual life living in this physical or materialistic world. There are so many temptations which an ordinary human being cannot ignore. Until the circumstances are favorable it is easy to be spiritual, and as soon as there occur adverse situations it is the high time to test that spirituality. For this, self-observation is the best way to see your progress as a spiritual person. 

[The pictures on this blog are posted here with permission from their owners or have been gathered from various sources on the Internet. If you are the copyright-holder to any of the photographs herein do not hesitate to contact me. They will be swiftly removed if desired so.]

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