Seeking Vision of God

India has a strong tradition of seeking reality that lies beyond the appearance. It is called searching for god. This search is not considered unusual. Starting from Adi Sankara, many seekers have devoted their lives to such search of god. In recent times, hardly a century earlier, Sri Rama Krishna had attained a vision of the divine. He tried and tested a variety of different paths and faiths and arrived at the conclusion “there are as many paths as there are views”. Yet Sri Rama Krishna did not rely on faith alone. When challenged by Narendra Nath, later Swami Vivekananda, on his vision, Sri Rama Krishna said “not only can I see god, I can show it to you.” 

In today’s world what exactly is vision of god? Why should one seek god realisation? If we take a population of people and categorise them in terms of their behaviour, we may arrive at a bell shaped curve. Where 95% human beings fall within the curve. We call them normal people with usual weakness and strength. Normal people form society, live, love, procreate and die.  There are five percent that fall outside on each end of the bell curve. We call them lunatics or geniuses. They think differently, act differently want different things.

Young Gadadhar Chakraborty, later Sri Rama Krishna, shunned money making education at his early life. When he was banging his head at the alter of mother Kali for a vision, normal people called him mad. Meera Bai felt whole world to be Lord Krishna.  She had everything the world could offer. Comfort, luxury, power, king of Mewar as husband. Any girl in her position would be thrilled. She shunned her marriage, her royal comfort and only thing she wanted was to merge with the blue god, Lord Krishna.

What is mother Kali of Sri Rama Krishna or Lord Krishna of Mira Bai? Why did they and many others before and after them sought to get the realisation of god? Is it possible, at some stage in life  everything becomes so mundane, so irrelevant and so irreverent, that a person wants to break the shackle and move out? A question they ask and the answer they get cannot be described in words. Because according to Vedanta, the truth is beyond speech and mind. A description only limits it. As Sri Rama Krishna would say, “a salt doll went to measure depth of ocean. It never returned to tell the depth. It became one with the ocean”. When the object of search and the seeker becomes one, what is there to tell?

Who can be a seeker? In theory anybody and everybody. But the query does not arise in all. What is the trigger for such a quest? Some say shock? Others believe good work in past lives prepares a human for the ultimate quest. Sight of disease and death, triggered  query in young prince Siddhartha, of Kapilavastu. Siddhartha renounced his family, his throne to seek out immortality. Later after intense penance, Siddhartha attained the state of Buddha. 

Closest I can come in terms of modern analogy is a physicist trying to find that elusive particle that will unlock mystery of origin of universe. How does understanding origin of life universe help any cause in society? It does not cure disease, it does not solve unemployment. Infact, it needs a lot of money to pursue esoteric science. A tunnel is built underground, spanning two countries, and spending billions of dollars, to identify one elusive particle. Why does a physicist need to do it? He has everything in life to make him comfortable? Yet it is his desire to find truth that drives him.  

While a spiritual seeker cannot describe his finding because seeker and the object of search become one. Yet analysis only takes a seeker so far. Seeker realises everything he has searched so far, is not the actual thing. Like a physicist searching the fundamental particle, realises more he goes inside the matter, further it splits. In the end one stares at a void where particles are moving at extremely high velocity. Yet we perceive our world as we do.  Is this what is called Maya, that distorts reality? Once a seeker pierces the veil of Maya, seeker becomes one with truth.

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