Sunday, December 4, 2016

The Spiritual Battle Ground

Why do you look so depressed? You should feel like a soldier who finally goes to battle!
(Wife of a colleague investor on the eve of the Global Financial Crisis)

The Bhagavad Gita, one of the most beautiful spiritual treasures ever written, starts on the eve of the bloodiest battle India has ever fought. In it, Lord Krishna tells general Arjun that he has a war to fight, whether he likes it or not. Being a strategist in the financial industry often feels like a battle, to me anyway. I am sure that many other professions have their points of reckoning. I had to smile when I heard the words of encouragement the wife of one of my colleagues gave when he was shell-shocked by the seriousness of the Global Financial crisis. I actually couldn't remember how I felt during these depressing days when our personal livelihood, and the fate of the world economies was on the line. If anything, I remember more the spiritual awakening symptoms that I experienced around the time and that I later shared in my first book, "The Magnificent Experiment". At the time it seemed then to me that the Blue Lord's prophecy "whenever righteousness falters and chaos threatens to prevail, I take on a human body and manifest MYSELF on earth" had come true for me personally in the dark days of 2008.

I had my professional soul searching moments years later, when I asked myself why exactly am I was in the, what seemed to me anyway, meaningless financial industry and not out creating something useful instead. The reason was simple, I had bills to pay for my two boys, and I had no vision for making it as a spiritual writer either. It was in this time of darkness when I had the same moment of truth on the battle field called life, just as Arjun had thousands of years earlier. The Blue Lord's message seemed loud and clear to me: "You have a role to play in the life of people you care for, you have karma to burn, and you have suppressed desires that can be worked off here. You also have a book to write that will help others to do the same. Just do your job!'

I am not sure that my message will be that well received in the spiritual community, but I want to make it anyway. I have hung out with many in the spiritual community and most of them are really nice, and many have special talents that are quite remarkable, but there is also a degree of escapism and arrogance. It is the old-familiar us versus them theme, which in the end is also the ego talking, only wrapped in spiritual clothes this time. When the Blue Lord asks us to jump into the messiness of life we start understanding what our ego is truly all about, and we start recognizing ourselves in the struggling sibling across the table."Do your job and then walk away" is the he message of the Bhagavad Gita,  I did that for a few years and have beautiful spiritual insights to show for it that I will share in my upcoming book "The Way of the Meister." So if you find yourself in the battle field called life, know that you are not alone. Roll up your sleeves and get your job done just as many other spiritual warriors have done before you.

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