FAITH – FLUCTUATIONS AND FLEXIBILITY
FAITH – the very word means a World of trust in someone or something usually Divine in nature. While some people have endless faith there are others who do not hold any Faith or trust into anyone. One could be having Faith in God, in The Guru, the Teacher, The Doctor, The Lawyer, The parents. It is wondrous how Faith changes its face frequently from time to time and we gain strength in our faith or lose faith totally owing to circumstances.
There is an incident from Mahabharata, where in the battlefield, the great warrior Arjuna finds himself in a dilemma and acute despair whilst having to fight against his own kith and kin amidst his elders and Krishna tells him, “Surrender all your sense of right and wrong on to me, and I shall cleanse you of all your sins and worries”. It was Arjuna’s faith in Krishna that led him to then fight guilt-free for the Rights for him and his brothers. That is an example of steadfast faith.
It is very rare to find such committed faith towards any person or even God in our selfishly conditioned minds. When we experience joys of life, relish abundance of material objects we often take it as all that to be rightfully ours but when we go through the reverse situation and lack or lose something or someone we commence on the blame game and accuse God for our situation. Interestingly, in the first place, we never express gratitude to the same God while in a happier situation. What kind of faith do we have in the supreme source then?
Our human minds are conditioned from a young age to the fluctuating practice of faith. Parents teach their children to pray every day which seems a good habit. The same parents, when in crisis increase the prayers, make special offerings on their gains or their child’s success, and in adverse situation speak out loud that they even fasted or made special offerings yet they didn’t get the required results. What are the young minds being conditioned into while witnessing such so called flexibility of faith. When one wants something done- increase the prayers, when one gets something –go back to normal once a day praying pattern, when things don’t seem to work – question your faith and convert to another one, all these situations seem like a yo-yo of faith going up and down.
Besides the faith in God, there is a faith relating to ones trust in someone. They say one cannot get healed of one’s sickness unless one has faith in the Doctor attending to him or her. Many times we hear people giving advice to someone to do’s and don’ts during an illness but the affected person who has immense faith in his doctor just goes by what has been prescribed. While doing so, there are instances when one does get influenced by people and his faith in the medical practitioner starts to fluctuate. Once that happens and the doubt creeps in his mind, the very same medicine which worked earlier does not seem to have the required effect.
Similarly, one cannot fight a legal case if He or She has a wavering faith upon the lawyer. In such cases a part trust is equivalent to no trust for if there is incomplete trust, there is no confidence resulting in facts being hidden and thus the results inaccurate.
A child has immense faith in the parents hence is never worried about his next meal or clothes or other basic requirements. It is this trust that assures him that when hunger strikes he will be fed; when it turns cold he will be kept warm. As the child grows, he just knows that his education will be provided for and whenever he needs to cry out the parent’s shoulder will be always there for him. As time and situations tarnish our faith we begin to lose hope and become disillusioned thus redirecting our trust in other sources which may not be the best result for us.
A lot more religious awareness and even more religious Gurus have taken an upsurge in the current times. Confused minds have been seen moving from one Guru to another: getting attracted, building faith, hearing tales about the Guru and then losing faith. There appears to be a merry go round of belief and disbelief amongst people who are unable to stick to a single Guru even as adverse situations come up. This is like flexibility of faith, choose your options each time and change as per your likings.
Then there is also a faith in one’s teachers. One has to have faith that the teacher is always going to impart the knowledge which is useful. Without having that faith one would be unable to learn anything at all. Alas! Here too fluctuations emerge as this noble profession is at times polluted with imperfections and lack of ingenuity.
The whole institution of faith is fluctuating towards instability. The firm minded keep their faith intact and progress on whatever path they choose without getting influenced by external forces. If we all learn to adapt that childlike faith in our lives, and know that life is simply a game where we are mere pawns and the Ultimate Source, The Almighty will provide for us what is best destined for us life would be less stressful, less falsities affecting us and our attitudes would become more positive.