The question

July 28, 2015

Sometime back ago a very old landowner who has a habit of telling everyone in the village – his time is running out, asked of me – can you please tell me…as I am dying soon….is there life after death?

I told the old landowner who likes to tell everyone he is going to die. The question is not whether there is life after death…..but are you alive now?

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‘Do you all notice, we live in a very funny age. These days everyone talks about sustainability. And it’s good that they do, because the opposite of sustainability is you would end up running out of batteries and grinding to a stop! That’s why Politicians like to talk about sustainable growth. Environmentalists go on and on about sustainable development and even farmers talk endlessly about sustainable farming…..but do you ever notice, no one ever talks about how to be a sustainable human!

That is why we end up living so much of our life in either the past or the future. Look around you. Isn’t life a paradox. Two couples who sitting together and what are they doing? Checking whatsap on their smartphones instead of talking to each other. People SMSing instead of talking. Whole generations living their lives in the virtual world. People who work, work and only work and even when they are supposed not to work, they are working. People who rush here and there, do this and that and yet neglect the most valuable and important things right before them etc etc etc.

To me that is simply unsustainable living! A dead end….Jalan Mati lah!

The solution is to strive to live in the NOW! Committing yourself to now, does not imply that you are an irresponsible hippie who doesn’t believe in forward planning. Neither does it mean, you don’t value the wisdom of what the past can teach you to shape you into a better person.

It’s simply an attitude to live life sustainably…intelligently and in the correct way a life should be lived.

Worry? Yes by all means, you wouldn’t be human if you don’t have the capacity to worry, but do it intelligently by recognizing the scale and perspective of problems. Do not be consumed by fear and anxiety all the time, that it even threatens to overwhelm you till you don’t have the capacity to live in NOW.

Forward plan? Yes of course, but do not be so obsessed again about trying to intercept the future that you end up living so much of your life in the imaginary future instead of the present.

It is a matter of degree and scale. Do not go overboard. Always keep things in the right scale and perspective. Do not make a mountain out of a molehill. Take it all in sensibly…intelligently…sustainability. How do you eat an elephant? Not in one sitting, unless you want to explode. Cut it up into little bite sizes and take your time about it….that’s sustainable dinning. In the same way for life, to live well, be part of NOW! Marinate yourself in it. Feel it’s texture. Savor it.

Above all understand the Tao of things – without the dichotomy of black and white, darkness and light, freedom and bondage….life will have absolutely no meaning. Just as without sadness there can be no such thing as happiness, they are truly complimentary concepts, one of the same reality even. Just as without death, there can be no appreciation of life and without the agony of defeat, there can be no such thing as the thrill of victory.

Strive to be at peace with the Tao of things. Do not spend your time and energy fighting the forces of the universe…

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