eligion has now become a tool for misguiding people instead of uniting them and revealing what ‘Truth’ means. Instead of being a source of inspiration for the welfare of mankind, it is leading to negative sentiments and creating mutual hostility. Diversity of culture is indeed a gift. Just as a common thread runs through a garland made from a variety of flowers, similarly the common thread of humanity passes through all of us. It is hence necessary to spread the message bequeathed to us by spiritual giants.
Our sages used to pray for the prosperity of the entire universe: “Guide us on the path of enlightenment from ignorance, from the fear of death to immortality and from darkness to light. Let all be happy and free from illness and disease.” When a thirsty person goes to a river to drink, the latter does not ask him to which community or religion he belongs. It quenches everyone’s thirst without any discrimination. Nature, too, presents us with the same lesson.
It is the tradition and the rich heritage of India to show respect to its rivers, fauna and flora. The peepal tree, which people revere, takes carbon dioxide and releases oxygen. The herbs used in preparing medicines were worshipped before being plucked, to induce feelings of respect while uprooting them. To make this world a better and peaceful place for all of us we should first change ourselves for the better and learn to love everyone and we should increase the wealth of meditation.
During his reign, Lord Rama taught people to forgive and to show compassion to those who by chance had erred. When he gave asylum to Vibhishana, he was asked what would he do if Ravana were to surrender. “If that happens, I shall give him my kingdom”, replied the Lord, which showed his magnanimity.
Since the life of a human being is often compared to a journey, a person should make all arrangements for his travel. What will he take when he departs from this world and what type of currency may he need at his destination? His accumulated earnings through meditation, the pious deeds he has done and the prayers through which he has been in touch with God will come in handy then.
Once Guru Nanak Dev Ji gave a bag containing some money to a miserly trader, asking him to hand it over to him in Heaven. “Is this possible?” the merchant asked.
“If you cannot carry this small bundle with you, why then you are wasting your time and energy hoarding and accumulating money, which has to be left behind when you depart from the world?” Guru Nanak Dev Ji asked in reply. Lord Krishna’s words in the Bhagavad Gita remind us to remember Him at all times and simultaneously fight life’s battles. The opportunity that is given to man here is to evolve himself spiritually and ultimately reach the Divine Kingdom.