Previous Parts: Introduction | Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10 | Part 11 | Part 12 | Part 13 |Part 14| Part 15| Part 16 | Part 17 | Part 18
I was checking the reports of the patients on that day and was hoping against hope that Arvind’s tuberculosis report comes negative. It was not to be. I was aghast. I must admit that Arvind had become more like a close friend to me and I was not able to accept any deterioration in his health. I called NGO and informed Mrs Ira about the report. As there was the need to modify his medication, I advised her to visit the hospital outpatient department to have consultation with the treating physician. I took Ms Ira’s permission and called Arvind on phone. I informed him about his condition and asked him to take ample of rest and have nutritious food. I was pleasantly surprised by the calmness with which he responded. There were no ‘How’ and ‘Why’. I couldn’t see him but as if he was smiling.
He replied, “It’s alright Doctor, I accept whatever is the result of my tests. And I would seek the treatment for my tuberculosis.” “Great!” I could only say this much. I learnt so much from him in few sentences, he spoke. There was no resistance to what was already there. His health was on decline; his immune system was not able to ward off progressive infection. There was no one in the world at this juncture to call his own yet he was so at ease with himself. There was no drama, no questions, and only simple acceptance. I realised that by accepting something unconditionally, we take back the power from any situation or person to affect us. When we don’t resist, when we don’t create further drama, we are in sync with the soul of the universe and we fulfil our destiny without creating any further karma. An act of total acceptance frees us while any act of resistance, binds us. What has already happened can’t be undone, although we have freedom to question and make ourselves more miserable in the process. I was going through a rough patch in my marriage. The ego war between me and my husband was at its peak and nobody wanted to give in.
Though he married a professional woman, he secretly wanted me to be a good home-maker also. I also felt that at times, he used to get uncomfortable with my professional achievements. I was not sure; it was jealousy or a healthy competition. Besides that, I felt threatened by his closeness to his women colleagues. I could feel a sense of discomfort at home, with sulking face and complaining eyes. I invariably found myself competing with colleagues at my work. I could see that my mind was always in conflicting situation, never integrated. I would be thinking about hundreds things at one time and hundred things about one issue. It was like being pulled from several directions and I disintegrating into several parts However, after meeting Arvind, for the first time I started understanding the difference between our soul and our ego. I started separating myself from my ego in every situation. I realized that my mind was relentlessly busy in making stories out of any situation, judging and trying to find ‘I’ in every situation. I could see that finding ‘me’ or ‘mine’ was always the hidden objective.
And the resulting attachments were main cause of my misery. The moment I could let go of ‘I’, the matter cease to have any importance, I simply got detached. Identification with anything which boosted my ego had very deep rooted conditioning. In spite of my best effort, it was not easy to not let my ego take over me. It was all so automatic that it was difficult to separate myself from my ego. I remembered Arvind’s word that our conditioning is very ancient, our mind has accumulated dust over several life times and it’s not easy to de-condition ourselves. Though I could not sustain the separation from my ego, but I was happy that at least for the first time in my life, I had glimpse of that space which separated me from my ego, the space which was the resting place of my soul.
And even these glimpses were enough to change the way I behaved or reacted to a particular situation. I realized that ego was the main cause of my suffering. I had to win war of words with my husband just to satisfy my ego. I was so identified by my thoughts that I hardly used to notice the eternal spirit hidden inside me... the consciousness which was masked by the ego. It was actually amazing. The moment I realized that I am being governed by my ego, it used to vanish. “Truth will set you free”, Arvind’s statement echoed during these times but unfortunately, I couldn’t stay with truth for long. I knew I had to learn lot more from Arvind.
~ To be continued