Real Independence

15 th of August is celebrated as our Independence Day with all fanfare. Surely, a lot of nationalist fervor gets aroused on the day and the heroic stories of how we got our independence fills our minds with awe and inspiration.

This is our “collective “ independence: it is the freedom gained by all the countrymen to choose a Government of our liking, without any interference or force from outside. While this is certainly a great feat, what each one of us would love to have is our “individual freedom”…wherein “I” can do everything as per my “free will” . This is when I will feel “really” independent.

Is that possible?

For this to happen, we need to ask a more fundamental question: who is this “I” who wants to act independently?  Who am I really? Am I just this body which is visible to the eyes? Can anyone see me “fully”? Can anyone “see” what is happening in my mind?.. my thoughts ?.. my emotions ? This is what brings us to the concept of “Soul” or that “energy” which “contains” all these  , but is not visible. And the irony is that this  “soul” is the real me….not this body! Body will go away someday. .but the soul will remain ..and take an onward journey.

So it is “I” the soul residing in this body , which is looking for freedom. It wants to act without any fear or influence of any “outsider”.It is this “I” who runs this body, like a driver drives his car. When to take speed, when to turn , when to stop etc are decided by  the driver. Similarly, it is the I in my body  who  decide when to walk, when to run, when to speak, when to be silent, when to eat , what to eat  etc etc.

Often, we are unable to do what we really want to do , and end up doing what we do not want to do. If I am a diabetic, and if I cannot avoid the temptation of gulping down a couple of succulent gulab jamuns,  who is in real control? Me or my tongue? I want to reduce my weight, but if I have samosa and salad in front of me, I end up choosing Samosa!!. Again, who is in control?  A student has his exams tomorrow , he wants to seriously study but cannot resist to go for a cinema ! As another example of our ‘dependence’ ,we will tell something in a haste and later will apologizes saying that we did not mean it.. .it was a ‘slip of the tongue”. Is this my independence? Are we in control over what we end up doing?

By design, my Soul is supposed to be the master of my body. Over a period of time, due to outside influences, the  sense organs start “ruling`’ over my soul. This leads to loss of independence for me, the soul. The soul no more feels in control of the situation. It is led in different directions by what the body happens to see , read ,hear etc ,often resulting in  a lot of sorrow and unhappiness over long term.

We have to return to a situation where this original I is in complete control of  the body  and decides what I see, what I hear, whom I meet ,what I say ,what I eat etc. Since in its original form every soul  is full of  positive qualities, all the actions directed by the Soul will lead to positivity, harmony  and real, lasting pleasure.

This is the meaning of  real freedom..

Let us reflect what extent  am ‘I’  free !!




6 thoughts on “Real Independence

  1. Nikhil says:

    Jndepence in reality is “ In – dependence”.. which is good or bad …, which is is determined by what one is dependent on: People ( self &/or other) ,Gurus , Values, habits , attitude all included.

    • Jagdish Shah
      Jagdish Shah says:

      Thanks for your prompt comments Nikhilbhai.

      My view is that taking inputs from a variety of sources..gurus, teachers ,parents etc is welcome..indeed is necessary. Finally, the decision has to be one’s own. One should not feel the pulls of some invisible strings due to which one feels compelled to go one way or another.

      Values/habits/attitude are very much part of one’s own personality and will surely govern the decision making.

      thanks again for your participation!

  2. Meena says:

    It also requires vigilance, honest introspection to determine why I am doing what what I am doing …or wanting this object . Then with time and better awareness, making the right choice or decision may come more easily and naturally ??

    • Jagdish Shah
      Jagdish Shah says:

      You are right Meena..vigilance in other words would mean constant attention..attention on what I am ..and what I am looking for. In the Bk language , this is called soul consciousness. In that consciousness , you operate out of the original qualities of soul ..and hence you are very authentic don’t go wrong. Our issue is that we normally are in the body conscious stage ,making us ‘off guard’ from the attentive phase

      thanks for your inputs

  3. Sanjay Aphale says:

    Thanks Jagdish bhai, for a different but thought provoking inputs re I, and the responsibility of the person – body n the soul.

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