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5344Re: The material world.

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  • shardul_nz
    Jul 18, 2004
      Greetings to All,

      It is only recently (Nov. 2003) that I have become involved with
      computer technology at any level and in fact have shunned, decried
      and generally loathed anything to do with computers and the internet
      for many years. This was based on my own personal view of the damage
      that I feel is being done by our reliance and increasing dependence
      upon technology's many and often pernicious facets.

      On the whole, this feeling still stands; but I have learnt (mostly
      by trial and error and with the help of one or two friends) to cope
      with the basics and to get by doing the simple tasks that I need to
      accomplish. The trap seems to be that the whole thing is quite
      alluring and I guess one has to be very cautious and disciplined;
      staying within the realms of "needs" as opposed to the demands of
      "wants or desires" or worse. My foray into the virtual world (the
      other day I heard someone call it the virtue-less world), whilst
      tiny and tentative, has been cause for more than a little inner
      angst on my part and I think that my soul's jury is still out on
      this one.

      While awaiting the verdict, I can take shelter in the really neat
      aspect that I have found to be the one most redeeming feature of the
      computer reality, and that is this forum. The words we post and read
      on these pages are the real-life spiritual experiences of real
      people: God-seekers, God-lovers, and particularly in Sri Chinmoy's
      case, God-knowers. Fun, warmth and heart-to-heart conversation. What
      could be better? (Apart from jelly beans that is! - I'm sorry Mark
      and Kamalakanta, but "My name is Shardul - and I'm a jelly-bean-
      aholic!!!")

      Coming back to the point; I have settled into a somewhat uneasy
      relationship with my computer and so we tend to look at each other
      sideways. The saving grace for me is posting and reading everyone's
      contributions - it is really an INSPIRATION and I thank you all.

      Last night I randomly picked one of Sri Chinmoy's books from my
      little library in order to read before retiring for the night. I
      opened it at any page and found these two questions and answers
      looking out at me; beckoning my attention. As often happens (and I
      know from the conversations that I have had with my friends over the
      years that this is true for many among us), Sri Chinmoy's words
      spontaneously offered me succour at a time when I have been a little
      uneasy with my new role. I hope you find something there too.

      This book contains a rare and somewhat breath-taking view of the
      highest realities of spiritual awareness as experienced first-hand
      by Sri Chinmoy whilst in the deepest states of meditation. Like a
      view from the top of Mount Everest - a view that very few on earth
      have seen with their own eyes, yet in some way aspire to call their
      own - Sri Chinmoy lovingly offers a very clear rendition of the
      "inexpressible." In so doing, he gives us all the dream of things to
      come - the proverbial "carrot before the donkey," as it were. It is
      one of those books that offers new gems each time it is opened, and
      also contains practical guidance such as the words below. Enjoy...

      From: The Summits of God-Life: Samadhi and Siddhi - by Sri Chinmoy

      http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/summits-god-life/toc.html

      Question: Do we have to remove all materialistic goals in order to
      realise God?

      Sri Chinmoy: How we utilise the material life is what is of
      paramount importance. Matter, as such, has not done anything wrong
      to God; it is not anti-divine. It is we who use material things in a
      wrong way. We must enter into the material life with our soul's
      light. We can use a knife to stab someone or we can use it to cut a
      fruit to share with others. With fire we can cook and with fire we
      can also burn ourselves or set fire to someone's house.

      We have to feel that matter and spirit go together. Matter has to be
      the conscious expression of spirit. If you say that matter is
      everything, that there is no spirit, no higher life, no inner
      reality, then I have to tell you that you are mistaken. There is an
      inner reality, there is an infinite Truth that wants to express
      itself in and through matter. Matter is asleep, and it has to be
      aroused. The material life has to be guided and moulded by the
      spirit.

      But first we have to understand what the material life is for. If by
      material life we mean lower vital enjoyment and the fulfilment of
      gross desires, then it is useless to try to accept the spiritual
      life simultaneously. But if the material life means the life of
      expansion - the expansion of the heart, the expansion of love - then
      matter and spirit can easily go together. In this material life we
      have to see Peace, Light and Bliss. What we see right now in the
      mind is jealousy, fear, doubt and all undivine things. But in this
      very mind we can and we must feel harmony, peace, love and other
      divine qualities. If we want these divine qualities from the
      material life, then the material life can go perfectly well with the
      spiritual life.

      The true material life is not just eating, sleeping and drinking.
      The material life is a significant life. And it eventually has to
      become a life of dedication. Right now in the physical we are trying
      to possess people and things. But the material life will have
      meaning only when we stop trying to possess and start trying to
      dedicate. When we dedicate ourselves to the Supreme, to the
      unparalleled goal of realising God, only then will life reveal
      itself to us as the message of Truth, the message of Infinity,
      Eternity and Immortality."

      http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/summits-god-life/26.html


      Question: Is technology acting as a hindrance to God-realisation?

      Sri Chinmoy: The answer is in the affirmative as well as in the
      negative. When modern technology is serving as an expression of the
      inner soul, when it feels that it has a connecting link with the
      inner life, the inner existence, at that time technology is a help
      to God-realisation. But very often we see that technology and the
      inner life do not go together. The outer world with its success is
      running towards a different goal. We have to be very careful about
      this, for no matter how much success we derive from technology, the
      infinite fulfilment cannot take place if the soul is not there.
      Again, the soul is lame if the outer life does not keep pace with it
      through technological and scientific progress.

      Science and spirituality have to go together, either today or in the
      distant future. Now they are at daggers drawn. But for the absolute
      fulfilment of God's Vision and Reality here on earth, science and
      spirituality must go together. From spirituality we can expect
      liberation and realisation. From technology and science we can
      expect material perfection - the material embodiment of the highest
      Truth. When realisation is inside material success, only then will
      the material world achieve permanence in eternal values. Again, if
      perfection is lacking in the inner world, then the material success
      has to inspire the inner realisation to come and take the lead.

      http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/summits-god-life/27.html

      Best Wishes to all and thanks for keeping those Inspiration-Fires
      stoked high and well fed ... Shardul.