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What’s the use of solving the mystery of death and God?

by Swami Prasad Sharma
(Dona Paula, Panaji, Goa)

What’s the use of solving the mystery of death and God?


What is wonderful in this world?

In a scripture of Hinduism, the Mahabharata, many questions were asked by Yaksha (chief of the nether world) to Yudhishthira, to which he politely replied. One of the questions asked by Yaksha was – what is wonderful in this world? The wise Yudhishthira replied that every day people go to the abode of Yama (the Lord of Death); still the rest of the world desires to live forever. What could be more wonderful than that? From this it could easily be concluded that death is the most dreaded happening in life.

Normally people don’t want to talk about death and consider this life as the only one to enjoy everything on Earth. They remain indulged in all kinds of enjoyments, the possession of land, and prolonging life by all means. Nobody believes that there are many births and that one comes again and again to fulfill remaining desires or tasting the fruits of one’s deeds. Normally, desires in the end may range from enjoying physical comforts to wishing emancipation.

Death is fearsome, as the dying person is deprived of all his possessions including his body. Hence, everybody desires to extend his life by all means. But there are people who penetrate into the mystery of death and through self-realization get immortality. An understanding automatically dawns on such a person that the self is a non-material element and not vulnerable to death. Knowing the self this person realizes immortality. Also he understands all souls are undivided and thus he develops the awareness of oneness.

Similarly, the belief in God is very shaky. Usually people feel that only when there is nobody to fulfill their requirement they will try God as a last resort. If one wishes to approach a saint to have a first hand idea about the nature of God then a saint will never recommend approaching God for materialistic gains, rather he would suggest developing a relationship with God for gaining love and passion.

Most of us are managing our daily livelihood and feel satisfied till something happens against our interests. Due to something that happens in life one may get attracted to find God. Development of an intense desire to search God is a unique desire for which many people have left behind their worldly possessions.
Now the question is: who is God, what are his characteristics, and how do we recognize Him? He is considered to be full of compassion, as proclaimed by the saints. This will prompt us to approach a spiritual teacher and practice under his guidance to recognize Him.

God is an ideal state marked by love and compassion and those who achieve these qualities are said to be of godly nature. He resides in the heart of each one and remains silent as long as we are egoistic. A person interested in getting his worldly problems solved or desiring some wishes to be fulfilled is not a true seeker. He is a beggar before God and will be dealt with on the basis of his deeds in this life and earlier ones.

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