India is considered as the Spiritual Capital of the world, but do we really understand spirituality?

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Spirituality: Science Turned Inwards

Spirituality is simply the search for Truth. And it is very-very rigorous in the sense that, in the language of spirituality, Truth is that which is not only unchanging within time, but is actually beyond time.

The word spirit means essence; that which is Real, that which actually Is. Man has to go to spirituality because everything that he perceives to be keeps changing, and in that way keeps deceiving him. Whatever you come across, whatever you get attached to, whatever you think to be real, it is no more there the next moment. Yes, the next moment can come a year later or thousands of years later; but there surely comes a moment when what you thought to be real is shown to be false. False in the sense that it is no more there. And that is the definition of falseness: that which presented itself as being, but in due course of time, moved into non-being. That is false.

Spirituality is the search for that, which is beyond being and non-being; and hence, that which will not deceive you by turning into false, when you believed it to be true.

Spirituality is very much like science, in the sense that it looks very-very closely at the world. Spirituality is extremely scientific because it wants to examine the world and its nature, just like the scientist. It wants to look at the world; it wants to observe the world and see, what the world really is? Where does it come from? What happens to it? How does one perceive it? How does it change? How does it end? It observes all its processes, its dissolution, its making, everything. Spirituality is very scientific. And then spirituality goes beyond science. How?

Science stops at the world. Spirituality looks at the world, then looks at the self, then sees the direct relation between the world and the self and hence, sees the two as one. And then it goes further beyond. When the spiritual eye sees that the self, the normal ego-self is nothing, but coming from worldly influences, it does not feel contended.

It cries out that, there has to be something beyond. This deep belief, which for want of a better word, we can even call just a postulation or a conviction, is in the language of spirituality called as Faith. So, these are the two aspects of spirituality.

The first is a very-very scientific observation of the world. If the mind is not scientific enough, it cannot be spiritual. If the mind does not know the world, it cannot move to something beyond the world. Knowing the world, its movements, its games, its suffering and its cunningness is very important. The spiritual mind must deeply understand the world. That is one aspect of Spirituality.

The second aspect is Faith. I understand the world. I see that I am made of worldly influences but I also have faith that there has to be something beyond these influences; influences which give me nothing but suffering.

This is Spirituality; attention and faith. And both are just helping you to go towards something that is of the beyond; something that is not merely a mental apparition, a sensory deception. And when you mention the senses, it becomes an example to indicate how spirituality goes beyond science.

Science stops at one particular superstition. What is the fundamental superstition of science? – That my eyes will tell me the truth. And my intellect can tell me the Truth. That is the fundamental superstition of science. Spirituality does not accept even that superstition. Spirituality says, “No! What the mind says is just that, the words of the mind. I want to look at the mind itself”. And that looking at the mind cannot happen while remaining in the province of mind. Hence, there has to be something beyond the mind.

And the spiritual man does merely remain at the level of positing this; he actually tastes this. This something of the beyond, this unreasonable sureness; he lives in it, he breathes it. His being has a different color all together.

So, it is not merely a belief system. Spirituality is not a cult. Spirituality is not a particular way of thinking. Spirituality is deep immersion into the Truth. It is not something of your mind; it is something of your entire being. You breathe it, you live in it.