February 2, 2012

Getting to the heart

Way to the heart is through love. I guess that does not require rocket science to understand. But what is more difficult is to act with love. Unfortunately, our world seems so full of everything that turns out love rather than invite it. Negative emotions such as anger, suspicion, doubt, hate, greed, jealousy and resentment all act to keep love away. We know that to love is to give unconditionally, but our ego that revels in the attention it seeks, keeps these emotions alive and our true self submerged in the clutter of the outward attractions.

Love can prevail only with a good dose of truth and sincerity. How difficult it is to get a good supply of these two attributes is the big question we need to ask ourselves. Given that our thoughts are what give rise to our emotions and then to our actions, we need to nurture positive thoughts in our mind. As individuals and as a community, we must seek to understand what hinders this positivity to emerge and reign. Why do we feel so jealous of each other, and what fires our emotions to keep ourselves so separate at the price of the agonies we have to endure in our daily lives. Wouldn’t brotherliness and love help to build that cohesive society? Why don’t we want that to happen? It’s easy to see that it is our selfishness and the desire to own and crave that is at the basis of all this human turmoil. Our development paradigm doesn’t help us to extricate ourselves from this quagmire either, for it is based on competition, and greed, euphemistically framed as individuality and the ability to stand on our own feet – as if anyone can really stand alone on our own two feet. Lessons from the past are evidence of the need of social harmony for peace to prevail and developmetn to happen. And now, even globalization shows us in perverse and not so perverse ways that truly no man is an island.

So to gain access to another’s heart is to align with its wavelength of emotions – to demonstrate our consideration and compassion. For that, we can learn to listen to the wisdom of other’s words, seek to work together to solve our problems and nurture that value of “consultation” that is at the heart of our democratic process. A strange transformation in us happens when we seek to understand the thoughts of another rather than merely judge it with our pre-formed assumptions. We then begin to realize that our knowledge, insight and wisdom are not ours alone. It is the property of God, to which everyone has access to when they know how to. There is no way to sustainably harness anyone’s heart but by kindness and compassion. Harshness and force can restrain the body, but it can never win the heart.


Anonymous said...

Thank you for writing much needed words at a much needed time. Our religion also calls on us not to be jealous, but to want for our brother what we want for our selves. It would be so good if we can learn to rejoice in the success of others, and then ask Allah to give the same to us. If only we can learn to let go of jealousy and hatred, and embrace brotherhood and love, how peaceful our minds and hearts will be...

Anonymous said...

Dear Dr.Sattar,
It is a great joy to feel the depth of the editorial.It is simply wonderful!
The Supreme Brahman (some may say, the aLL powerful invisible infinite energy)has manifested as visible Universe with infinite galaxies, stars,solar system, planets,world,plants and animals.A tremendious unseen force has been working behind these comprehensive manifestations or creations. With what infinite Truth & Sincerity, this Force is acting is unknown to all creations.A minute fraction of this Force can only be felt by the creations who have the right instrument to feel it and this instrument :the human being has given the name "Heart." Those who are are gifted with Pure Hearts are blessed to feel and experience Pure Love.Pure Love has no expectation.So if we truly love something or some body, we can't have any expectation from the loved once. Love,Lover & Loved will be One.This will be felt by the Heart and this feeling will sustain in the Universe as Vital Force of creation to maintain equalibrium.Love is the creative Force in the Universe.