We want a better world than the one we have. A world that works for everyone. A world of peace. First, we must ask the question: How did we get here in the first place?
It was not by accident, but rather, by design. The world we are experiencing is not surprising, given that we chose individualism over community, consumption over conservation, and competition over cooperation. This modus operandi was bound to lead to a world of perpetual wars, perpetual greed, and perpetual corruption.
We are not accepting that the problem is us. Human beings are so deeply flawed yet are attempting to solve this problem that we ourselves created. Albert Einstein said that you cannot solve a problem with the same mind that created it.
We continue to kneel at the physical altar in all its forms, completely oblivious, indeed ignorant of the spiritual. In essence, we are spiritual beings. Cliché though it has become, we are spiritual beings having a physical experience, not the other way around. To make us right side up again, our investments must now be made in favour of the spiritual rather than the physical. We will find there the answers to all our challenges. We will discover that the soul has neither wants nor needs, is whole, complete, and abundantly endowed. It finds joy in giving, has no need to take, and has no fear of dying. We discover that we are perennial joy and have no need for passing pleasure, the pursuit of which has left us spiritually bankrupt and devoid of the love and happiness we are looking for in all the wrong places.
The fear, anxiety, and the myriad other maladies we are currently overwhelmed with, are a function of this confusion, indeed ignorance that has given rise to attitudes, vision, perspectives and actions that are ruining the planet and giving us empty lives without meaning and purpose. Instead of looking within, our focus is without.
It is in the right awareness that we will find our salvation. We are aware that we are aware. We are not aware, however, of who we truly are. We are conscious of ourselves as a body (body conscious), rather than as the immortal soul (soul conscious). When this latter informs our living, the right attitudes, vision, perspective, and actions naturally flow from that awareness. Right solutions can only come from the correct diagnosis. The world was once a garden. It has now become a wilderness. It is up to each one of us, with the awareness of being a soul, the seed, to nurture our spiritual lives and water the roots of a new way of thinking. If we take on that responsibility, imagine what our world could grow to be.
Ananta Alva is a Rajyoga teacher with the Brahma Kumaris, in Manhattan, New York, USA