I hear the word conscious living very often nowadays. A question arose in my mind,”were we not living a conscious life all these years? What is conscious living?”
We lived a natural life in an era when there were no TVs, no mobiles and our parents never even used to take us for movies, we never ate out in restaurants, but we enjoyed going out for picnics, played under the sun till dusk, skipped a lot, ran a lot, and enjoyed the company of visitors during summer holidays, particularly cousins of our own age.
As we grew older, we concentrated on our studies and never even thought of opposing our parents, as we had a belief that whatever our parents did was for our good. We allowed our parents to select our line of education at college. If that doesn’t sound significant enough, we even married the person chosen by our parents that they felt was best suited for us and our family. We accepted things as they came as we moved on in life and never made too many choices.
Now, so much is spoken about making choices but for our baby boomer generation it was a new concept. Of course as days progressed into our adulthood, we had to make more active choices based on the need of the family. That was how I chose to study further and qualify myself, took up a job and decided what was best for our children. In a way, we had taken the position of our parents.
Although, we probably did not ask as many questions like the present generation or challenge our parents’ choices or beliefs, experience did mold us over time and motivated us to start asking questions and be more open minded. This is the main reason why I am not conservative, but embrace all good things in all religions and accept everyone as human beings with their positives and negatives if any.
Yesterday, I decided to live a day being conscious of every moment. As always, I woke up, meditated being aware of my chakras opening as I chanted OM and merged into nothingness. Then as I exercised, I was keenly aware of how my muscles and nerves stretched, how long I am able to hold my breath, etc.
In the kitchen, as I cut ginger roots for pickling, I noticed the smooth tender ones without any fiber while the fully grown ones with lot of fibers, a little harder to cut. Made me think that as kids we don’t have too many attachments - we play with one toy and when we get another we leave the first and easily take the other but as we grow our attachment becomes stronger and stronger which becomes the cause for ego.
I cut plantains stems next for curry. The stem slices are full of thin white fibers that have to be removed by twisting around one’s fingers. Once removed they become two pieces with out any fiber and are edible and good for health. The same attachment theory came to my mind again.
As I was gardening I saw a little tiny creeper clinging to a close by tree and growing. Nature is so adorable and thrives by supporting each other and giving space for the other one to survive.
That evening, I watched a cow walk by on the street, her neck belt tied to her left leg so she wouldn’t run away. The poor thing could not look to the right, and could not eat grass which was on the right side. She just had to bend to the left and walk very slowly. In my home town Ooty I have seen cows not tied like this but going with a watch dog and they used to graze in the meadow and in the evening the dog used to lead them and all returned home safe. How different life in a bigger city is. Even a cow cannot live a natural life here. Man has become selfish and does not think of other fellow men, leave alone other species.
Yes, a change, a silent revolution, an internal transformation within to build a better world with peace and harmony is the need of the day. And that is what conscious living means to me.
Image Credit: Sastha Prakash