“I had a dream. . . ,” started my friend. We were having our cuppa by a roadside tea-stall, our favourite one. I instantly knew that it was going to be one of those profound moments, like when a Zen master starts sipping his tea and is about to say something very deep and witty — my friend was no less!
There was a chuckle as he continued, “. . . in that dream, I come to know that I am dying, but nobody around me knew why. And interestingly, everyone was pretending as if nothing was wrong with me, trying to hide it from me. I would wander into far-off lands, have my strange moments, and drift back, each time feeling weaker and closer to death.”
I held my breath, as I knew he was going to hit me with a thought straight out of his mysterious depths. He drew his breath long and continued, “And then I died. . . and woke up in heaven — or so I thought when I had actually woken up from my dream.” He paused.
I knew this was not the end. I held my attention fixed on him, like the pole star. He continued, “What a great pity to know that you are going to die, and yet not know why. . .” Then, suddenly, he dropped it on me: “And, how much more strange and unbearable is the fact that we live every moment of our life and yet we do not know why we live!”
Well, even if you knew that the sky was going to fall on you, it would still knock you out flat, every time!
I left him, and as I walked, I looked at everything with the eyes of a six-year-old, wondering at everything, without really knowing the why of anything. And then I heard something from the depths whispering, “We live so that we find that Love and live that Love – it is simple.”
Behind the whisper, I saw the smiling face of my Friend, fading, leaving something behind.
I looked into that mist to find out what He had left —
It was, as he said, simple. It was that Love. . .
Devotion without Gratitude is Incomplete
~ Cover image: Beloo Mehra