I pushed the majestic wooden door as angrily as possible and strode in fuming. I needed clarifications, I needed answers. As I walked in, the walls echoed with the sound of my footsteps, giving an eerie feel. But I didn’t care. I needed answers and as I reached the inner chambers of the hall, the room leading to my Master, I stopped, took a deep breath and walked in.
My Master sat in the lotus position, his eyes closed, a smile playing on his lips. “You’re here,” he said. “Come, sit,” he motioned as he opened his eyes, looking at me.
I sat cross-legged, still fuming and breathing heavily. My Master observed me without saying anything. After a few moments he said, “What’s bothering you?”
“Everything!” I said.
“That’s quite obvious. Why?”
“I don’t know.. I’m just seeing too much negativity. Experiencing too much negativity! The world’s going downhill. There’s rape. Just the other day, a 13-year-old boy was caught for attempting to rape a woman. Can you believe that? A 13-year-old BOY!” I stressed on the word.
My Master tsked. I continued on, “And there’s rape happening almost every day around the world. And shootings in schools and wars in countries. Flood and landslides. I’m tired. I’m tired with society and people,”
“You’re tired,” My Master added.
“Yes, very tired,”
My Master rose and went over to his wooden study table. He started fiddling with something, some form of apparatus on his table and then came back with a small table and placed it before me. He then placed a ceramic cup on it.
“I made you tea. Drink up. You’ll feel better,” he said, smiling.
I smiled back sadly, thinking to myself that despite the world in turmoil, my Master has all the time in the world to make tea. Regardless, to please him, I took a deep breath and took in the fragrance of the tea. It had a very sandalwood-ish scent to it. Very soothing and calming. Vapor rose from the cup as I held it in my hand, feeling the warmth of the tea. I took a sip. The taste was out of this world!
“This is amazing!” I exclaimed.
“It is. I used several herbs I found around the monastery,” My Master said as he took a sip from his cup. “Now, tell me more about this problem of yours.” he said.
I placed the cup down and started ranting. “I’m just.. I just feel so depressed seeing everything that’s taking place in the world. So.. negative. So angry, so mad. I think I’m going mad.”
My Master laughed. Seeing him laugh heartily, I couldn’t help but force a giggle.
“What’s so funny?” I asked him.
“You,” he said while laughing.
I started to laugh harder, “Why me?”
My Master shrugged and we both had a good hearty laugh. Finally, after wiping my tears from all the laughter, I took a deep breath, smiled and said, “Thanks for making me laugh. I needed that,”
My Master smiled and replied, “But do you know why you laughed?”
I knew a lesson was coming up for me. I couldn’t think of an answer as only he knew. So I smiled and said, “I don’t know. You tell me, Master.”
“Because you found the situation funny.”
I stared blankly at my Master. “I’m afraid I don’t get you, Master.”
Taking a sip from his cup, my Master said, “It all depends on you. How you view things. If you wish to take them seriously, then by all means do so. If you wish to take them lightly, then by all means do it. In life, we live by choices. It’s the choices that determine our destination. Our next step.”
“What should I do? I’m feeling sick with the way the world is working right now,”
“And do you know why you feel sick?”
“No. All I want to know is, why is there so much negativity. I mean, where did it all go wrong?” I asked him back.
“Here,” My Master points to my heart. “Here.” he repeats.
“So I’m at fault for everything?”
“No and yes.”
I tried to hide my frustration to his reply by sipping on the tea as hard as I could. My Master observed me smilingly. He always does that. Always talking in riddles.
“I’m not talking in riddles,” he said as though he had read my mind.
“Then why am I at fault for all the negativity taking place around me?”
My Master comes closer and then says, “Because everything you see are but the manifestations of what’s inside of you. Because you give birth to those thoughts. All these dirty filthy rotting thoughts inside your head, slithers out from your mind and manifests itself outwardly to remind you to look inward. It’s a way the Universe is trying to tell you that whatever you’re thinking is bad and that you need to improve yourself.”
He continued on, “You’re not only living in this dimension, this realm. But in actual fact, you’re actually living concurrently and on parallel in two different dimensions or realms. One is the outer realm, which is governed by the five senses and the other is the inner realm which you experience when you’re quiet, in solitude. In your head. Your thoughts. Both realms have an effect on each other. But the inner realm poses to have the greatest effect on the previous. In the end, it all boils down to how you think. Your thoughts. If you have terrible thoughts, you end up saying or doing terrible things. In the end, you blame the world for being terrible. It’s all here, in the mind. And here, the heart.”
I kept silent. My Master continued on, “The world, is just like a mirror where one sees his reflection. If you look into the mirror with an angry face, you’ll see a reflection of angry person staring right back at you. But if you look into the mirror smiling, you’ll see somebody who looks just like you, smiling back at you. All these monstrosity that you see happening, is the Universe’s way of reminding us to go on an introspective journey within. To discover, mend and better ourselves.”
“So I should think positively?”
”No. Thinking is not enough. Working towards positivity is equally important.”
We sat silently for a few minutes. I took in everything my Master said and then posed another question to him, “What if, after all the work to be positive, I become positive but I still see bad things happening around me?”
And here’s where his reply blew me away, “If you’re positive and if you have positive thoughts, you won’t view the negativity happening around you in the same way ever again. Infact, you’ll become oblivious to it. Not because you’re fed up. But because you’ve come to a point where only the goodness matters. Matters regarding to negativity would cease to exist. You will be full of positivity. The embodiment of love and goodness. From your thoughts and through your body you would be exuding positivity and you’ll only attract goodness. When you reach that state, you’ll know what to do with the negativity around you.”
He then said something, something that he said a very long time back which I had so foolishly forgotten. When he said it, it made perfect sense.
“You must be like a lotus, unfolding its petals when the sun rises in the sky, unaffected by the slush where it is born or even the water which sustains it!” My Master smiled, winked at me and took a sip of his tea.
I smiled back. We sat and drank the tea, basking in each other’s warm presence. The thought of the world in turmoil left my head altogether. Only the fragrant tea mattered.