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CORONA PANDEMIC-WHEN HUMAN LIFE IS JUST ANOTHER NUMBER

Even in normal times, we are hugely dependent on the news avenues-mainstream and social media- to keep us updated on happenings around us and around the world. In this lockdown period most of us lean even more heavily on these avenues to form our opinions and shape our thinking. If you go deeper into the remote villages and among the lesser privileged, the humble radio, even today, is their only window to the world.

But I wish to point out that there are limitations to knowledge and realization based on what we can see, touch and feel. This Corona virus pandemic is teaching us all a lesson that we had forgotten, deluded as we were, by the rat race. It is teaching us that there is a consciousness beyond what appears logical and ‘real’. It is showing us that the news media can at very best treat the loss of human life as just another number and move on with a macabre chart that appears no different than a score board in a test match where runs are shown adding on and wickets falling. But is that what each one of us really is? Just another number?

Today, I pity those intellectual giants among us who are proud of their logical and rational thinking and claim to be atheists. God, to them is poppycock. The only reality is that 2 +2=4  and so that which can be recorded, computed or pegged is reality and the rest must be nonsense.

By no means am I trying to impose any theory that there is someone up there sitting on a gigantic computer and working out things down here. What I am trying to drive home is that the only reality that actually can get us out of this gloom and doom is self belief, self belief born of the realization that the human being has the capacity to change his circumstances, his environment and even his world by believing that it is ultimately he who is the doer as he is the reaper. That since yesterday’s karma determines today’s circumstances; today’s karma will certainly determine tomorrow’s reality.

Above and beyond the concept of praying to any deity is the ancient karmic theory that says that the God we pray to or seek, is actually residing within our being but we need to believe in that. We cannot compute God or rationalize Him through theorems and mathematics for sure. Yet it is that which we cannot calculate that matters most to us in the end.

   “Suffer what there is to suffer, enjoy what there is to enjoy. Regard both suffering and joy as facts of life, and continue chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo, no matter what happens. How could this be anything other than the boundless joy of the Law?”

— Nichiren

The above quote more or less summarizes cosmic reality which is superior to apparent reality. The news channels can tell you that 850 men and women died before their time due to Corona. You have a number to gasp at. But each of those 850 may have at least 10 or maybe even 5, who have to live on and who have suffered great pain on his/her demise. Pain that cannot be quantified. Friends, relatives, associates, neighbors who probably have lost so much and yet no news channel can give you that graph-it is just not possible. They suffer a present continuous grief which may diminish in time but which varies from person to person. If only they could believe that quote, they could probably lift their depleted life condition and get up and fight and make the best of what is left and even do wonders in the future.

For the atheist the sorrow of having lost a near and dear one will not cease. He knows from logic, that one that lives must die so the logical finality is there for him but what he cannot find a solution to, is the pain and inner suffering he is undergoing. He cannot believe there is a God, within or without, to lean back on, or to help rebuild his life. For him he has lost someone for good and that suffering is free to consume him –driving him either to suicide or allowing him to wither away in grief without end.

So if you believe in a God, pray to Him, if you believe in the Law of Cause and Effect, then use this lockdown to reach within yourself and awaken the immense power that can move mountains and to which, even Corona virus is not an equal. You have within yourself immense and immeasurable power to save yourself, your near and dear ones and indeed, the world. You need to only dare to believe in it and act upon it. If you do not know it today, seek it out. But do you dare to believe? That, my friend, is the real question you need to answer today.