Jun 30, 2006

Nirvana... the state of bliss!!!

I recently had the good fortune of attending a talk by a much talked about and respected Swamiji. The topic was mundane, but he was able to hold the attention of the large audience for the entire duration. I was practically indifferent to the entire sermon, which is pretty surprising since I usually love or hate things pretty strongly.

After the talk, I started ‘thinking’ (which, btw, is very rare, in fact rarer than the blue moon, the Koh-i-noor, and a product not endorsed by AB… oops, I’m digressing), as to what is it that these sadhus and swamijis and gurujis posses that so many people flock to them. Maybe the Marketing department should do a case study on them to find out how they acquire new ‘customers’ and retain them for life.

I mean, he was a good speaker, so to say. Not monotonous. Nice anecdotes. Some witty one-liners. Some PJs. In fact, I could have been listening to any stand up comedian, except that this one was dressed in flowing robes, and had long hair. But, then, what is it that makes respected industrialists, politicians, film stars and other big shots with bloated egos to prostrate and kiss the swamiji’s feet. It was sycophancy at its peak, and I was feeling good that, some day, the boss who kicks my @$$ will also lick some of the swamiji’s… the thought is sooo good…

I mean, in my 23 years on this planet, I have had my fair share of sermons from miscellaneous godmen. My mom still listens to some of them on TV. None of them have any different message. It’s all old wine in older bottles. Look for happiness within. You are special. Awaken the child inside you. Believe in yourself. Breathe deeply. Meditate. Sing Bhajans. Listen to the ‘Great Epics’ and follow their teachings. Blah blah blah… It helps if you have a soothing voice, and droopy eyes.

In fact, if it were not for their long incomprehensible titles, and different colored robes, I wouldn’t be able to tell them apart. But then, I have seen perfectly sane, well educated, highly successful individuals lose their mind and fall in line behind these swamijis. I have seen IIT educated computer engineers sacrifice six figure salaries and sexy secretaries to serve the sundry swamijis (wow, I still remember alliteration!!!). I have seen beautiful young girls sway to the rhythm of the bhajans, unmindful of the fact that half of the audience is ogling at them.

I initially used to hate these swamijis. I used to think that they mislead people and ruin careers. Things were especially sad if one’s parents got involved in some such cult worship. (I thank God and all godmen that mine didn’t). The kids get brainwashed at an impressionable age and are not left with any option. The allegations of financial impropriety and sex scandals in some ashrams added to my dislike.

Then, I dunno what happened… Suddenly, I became indifferent to them… mebbe, this is what they call ‘Nirvana’… a state of complete apathy.

I mean, they don’t come to my house or call me up and solicit my followership, like say a credit card salesman or a telemarketing guy. They appear on TV, say their goddamn sermons, and suddenly, some perfectly logical, free will exercising adults go to them and ‘seek their blessings’. This is a free world, and every guy has his freedom of speech. I mean, I’m allowed to crap abt them in my blog and post it for the world to see (It is an entirely different matter that millions watch their program and hardly five people read my blog… more on that later)…

I also thought, for all their misgivings, they still go out and build schools, hospitals and other community buildings in places we haven’t even heard of. Truly, a village may be godforsaken, but a godman never forsakes it. :D

They also help ensure that the big bad corporates loosen their purse-strings and donate money for some social cause. I mean, if someone donates 10 crores, and the godman siphons off 2 crores, it is still worth it. Assume he takes a commission for transferring wealth from rich to poor…

I know that the subject of sadhus and swamijis generally evokes very passionate views… People either love them or hate them… But, sadly, I have become indifferent to them… Maybe, it is time to awaken my kundalini, so that my emotions flow more freely…

PS: If you can’t digest what I have written, take a deep breath and fart… It helps clear your body of toxins, and makes you healthy, wealthy and wise :P

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