What does it take to remove mental afflictions of anger, fear, smallness, desire, hatred and polarity? These afflictions keep us confined within ourselves and don’t allow us to experience the divinity, love and auspiciousness that is the true nature of existence. We live life selectively; on the basis of ideology or kinship with those who are like us. If it’s easy to love those who are like you, it’s just as easy to mistrust or hate ‘the other’ or those who are unlike you. We learn all the skills of living in a ‘world’, paying no attention to the question of what it means to simply exist.

To live in a world means to construct an identity, to secure a place and a role in society and to participate in the economic and political system. It  also means to consistently drive your efforts to change, vanquish, drive away or simply obliterate all that is a threat to your self-created identity. We are forever on guard. The world I see is not a constitution of facts, it’s a constitution of my perceptions. In other words, the joys or sorrows I experience are not caused by the world, but by my perceptions of it. Our existence is wombed in ignorance. We continue to live in ignorance even as we mature as adults. The knowledge we acquire is relative to only those aspects of our existence we commonly agree exist or that which we believe we should know  about in order to sustain ourselves. Such knowledge doesn’t remove us from the womb of our ignorance. We remain undisclosed and unborn to ourselves. It is in this darkness within that the mind imagines, the mind speculates, the mind fears and the mind pines for.

The compulsions that confine, enslave and demean us only thicken with our continued identification with all that we- in a state of ignorance- have constructed. In the final analysis, neither our knowledge of the ‘world’ and its ways, nor our wealth, name, position and kinship will bail us out; but only that knowledge that converses with our self will. When we mask our ignorance, our knowledge is only cosmetic. It simply makes us look good. But when we look at our ignorance, stand facing it, seek to understand it and fearlessly dwell in it- wonderful things happen… For one, you know that you don’t know, you also get certain about what you know and you allow the powers of simple existence to  unfold. Your  speech loses its arrogance and becomes sincere, you empathize, you trust, love becomes free of attachment, and respecting another is no longer a test of your patience or ‘tolerance’. You revel in being ‘supported’ by a force  you can’t see, but which you- despite your ignorance- are absolutely certain, exists.

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