Times of crisis provide excellent opportunities to introspect on our lives. There is latent chaos in order, and there is also hidden order in chaos. At the macro-level, crisis helps in cleansing the old, hidden chaos, before the system self-organizes in the emerging new order. At the micro-level, times like these help us to cleanse, heal, and deepen our relationships at various levels – relationships with the external world, family, self, and finally with the Creator. Here are some ways how we can find optimism and resilience during current times.
Experience the moments –
“Live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find eternity in each moment.” Henry David Thoreau
I believe in living an ‘experiential life.’ Some may even refer to this as meditative living. It starts with recognizing and accepting the realities. Then, to live and fully experience the moments – the plethora of emotions, feelings, and thoughts. I try not to judge my experiences. Let these be. Many times, I am a silent observer of these feelings, and at times, I get involved with detachment. These days, I also find myself experiencing the beauty of the simplest things which I would not have otherwise noticed. I take delight in the beauty of life around me – the floating cloud, the raindrops, stars in the night sky, the chirping of the birds, and the smell of the earth.
The wisdom that I have realized is to smile for what I have today and not to postpone my happiness for tomorrow. Be happy for no reason because it is the song of the soul.
Connect with the Infinite –
Reading classic literature helps us to raise our state of consciousness. I particularly enjoy listening to the lyrics of the songs, composed by Tagore. This particular song, ‘Simar majhe asim tumi,’ helps me to connect with the all-pervading consciousness. In this song, Tagore praises the Infinite. He writes how the beauty of the Creator is getting manifested through his finite self.
It is only our ‘finite, lower self’ which experiences fragility during times like this. Crisis makes us realize our limitations – limitations of freedom, limitations of will, limitation of power. However, it also helps us to evolve, in the long run, to Higher Self, if we choose to.
Find meaning in suffering –
‘To live is to suffer, to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering.’ – Friedrich Nietziche
We need to remind ourselves that suffering and pain are acquired qualities of mind. These qualities are the consequences of the frictions and reactions with the external world. The sufferings are because of the beliefs we thought were truths – acquired based on our limited, relative knowledge. Now is the right time to reexamine those beliefs that resulted in our sufferings. If we uncover the causes, then these become the reasons for growth and wisdom. My 2008 crisis experience became a reason for personal growth because I gave meaning to my sufferings. It resulted in my first book of poems.