Posted in Creation, Nature, spiritualzain

Creation

Indeed, in the creation of the heavens and the earth and the alternation of the night and the day are signs for those of understanding. (3;190)

The Holy Qur’an talks of Creation being a conscious well planned intention by God. It is further mentioned that all of Creation has one purpose, which ‘is the worship of the Almighty-the Creator of this world’. And this worship is restricted to not just prayers, but also encompasses, the appreciation of the wondrous creations around us. Each creation knows fully well the type of praise it needs to do. The birds sing songs of praise, the trees prostrate in adoration. All of nature worships the Almighty in its own ways without a need for reminder. The only one though who needs a frequent reminder, is the Noblest of all Creation-Man.

In Islam it is believed that Allah-God created Prophet Adam in the best form. So being the children of Adam, how can we ever even for a minute believe that we are anything but the beautiful children? The moment you stop believing you are a wonderful creation of the Almighty, you are dropping one of the ways to worship the Creator of all Creators.

You are a masterpiece that the Almighty thought of and executed, He however left the choice of reacting to the environmental factors entirely to you. Resisting the forces of nature is a challenge the toughest often succumb to, but that doesn’t erode away their essence, it only makes them more beautiful. There is an understated beauty in the weathered souls, who have battled the forces of nature, carving out a compelling persona inside out.

Nature takes its time to develop and produce its masterpieces. Seed by seed, leaf by leaf, petal by petal, thorn by thorn, root by root, branch by branch, fruit by fruit. And in that process one can truly accept the magnificence of creation, the wondrous work which, our Creator has put into making Our Big Blue, Our Home. And each element of our existence is in itself a work of art. Patiently the seed must push through to be the sapling before the enormous tree can spread out its magnificent branches, and as the saying goes, from only little acorns do mighty oaks grow.

Let your eyesight wander and feast on the sublime splendour that is Creation. From little critters creeping crawling under the soil, to the magnificent avian swooping down to catch prey, from the majestic trunk waving quadruped to the enormous blue beauty swimming graciously, words fail to capture the infinite creation of nature.

When you look at a crow, it’s just another noisy plain old black bird flying around. There are over 120 members of the common crow family. There is more to Crows than just being black. The Jay bird for example, is a delight to the eyes, sporting the most well put together colour palettes that nature has to offer.

The inconspicuous soil that the grasses and roots of plants hold on to is yet another plain old lump of black, yet there are varieties of soil that we are unaware of, and each variety plays a role in the development of a wide variety of flora and supporting fauna. Not only that, deep beneath the soil, are hidden treasures, a gift to aid our existence, from metals to oils to jewels to adorn our everyday life to fossils that hold key to our past life. The ground beneath our feet as simple as it may look is a treasure trove of things key to our subsistence.

It didn’t however happen overnight. Nature took its own sweet time making all these wonderful gifts for us, some even taking millions of years in the making. We are a gift of nature too, it takes nine months in the womb to take us from a tiny drop to a full-fledged baby, and then the years add on to grow us into a fully grown and formed adult. Then why is it that we forget that our souls and personalities also take time to evolve and grow? In fact, each day is a learning curve. Each day we become a better version of ourselves inside to out. There however also exists this group which believes they are already beyond perfect and don’t need any work. That’s just narcissism. The day you believe you are a perfect version of you, that’s the day you stop learning. We need positive reinforcements in our life, but not at the cost of becoming self-obsessed.

A by-product of our modern world is growing narcissism which is leading to unprecedented levels of depression and anxiety across the spectrum. The world is slowly becoming full of people who think they are the authority on beauty standards. These so called authorities are nothing more than proponents of the commercial cosmetic companies. They trap you in parameters of aesthetics and expect you to comply, a bit like selling your soul to the devil.

True beauty begins from beauty inside which reflects on the outside. We have enough and more “cosmetically beautiful” people in the world, but we don’t have enough of the real raw beautiful souls.

There is a saying attributed to Ali ibn Abi Talib, last of the rightly guided Caliphs of Islam, which helps understand this thought further, “Whoever beautifies himself on the inside, Allah will beautify him on the outside.”

When there is good inside, the good pours on the outside and it acts like a mirror reflecting the goodness onto whoever peeks in. The real raw beauty is edging towards being that thing of beauty we talked of in folklores of those long gone.

The battles of existing everyday leave behind their mark on our lives, sometimes apparent sometimes not. And it’s these marks making us the person we are today. And some may find those marks beautiful and yet there will be many to call them names of the worst kind. Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder. I only truly understood what love is when my little one had the chicken pox. It was the worst breakout I had ever seen and heard off. Looking at her in suffering made me realise, that underneath all that scary horrible pox was still my beautiful little girl. The pox sure altered her physical appearance, but it was my baby all the same. And in that moment I truly grasped the meaning of beauty lies in the eye of the beholder.

The entire world has known and heard of the Grand Canyon, it’s a valley weathered down exquisitely by the forces of nature. The gorgeousness of the Fjords of Scandinavia are also a result of weathering over many million years by various elements of nature, and the world flocks to see them in their splendidness. The Alpine mountains and valleys are a similar result as well and they are known as one of the ultimate Romantic Destinations of the world. The beautiful moon that we witness each night has had its fair share of bombardment by the elements of the universe, yet it mesmerizes each pair of eyes laying sight, and if that isn’t enough, the female of our species are often likened to it in beauty by their ardent admirers. Some may call it spots on the moon, but they are those “spots” that add an enigmatic charm around it.

Likewise, each one of is truly beautiful in the way our Creator created us. Even the ‘ugly duckling’ grew up to be a beautiful swan. Our Creator created us all differently to show us that beauty lies in diversity. The rainbow is a spectrum of seven, the flowers are plentiful in each hue, the plants and trees are so many, that we don’t even know them all, the jungle is a home to bugs, cubs, a hiss, a roar and some more. And all of this make a beautiful world, and remind us each day we are different, but a unique kind of beautiful together.

That layer of pretence,

That layer of powder,

That layer of paint,

That layer of charades,

That layer of air,

That layer of fabric,

It all washes away,

It all fades away,

It all falls apart,

It all drifts apart.

The foundations stay strong,

The foundations cannot go wrong,

The unshakeable,

The unbreakable.

So stay strong and pure,

The dust is the undeniable end for sure,

And return with beauty in your heart and soul,

To bask in the eternal reward from the Creator of us All.

-SpiritualZain

Posted in Life, love, Nature, spiritualzain

Love

We all think we know love. Of course we do. It’s one of those innate emotions that we are all blessed with by our Creator, making it the most basic of human emotions. One of the sweetest sounds that you can ever hear is the cooing of a baby looking up in love at the parent. The season of spring ushers love in perhaps the most natural way. The sight and sounds of life starting afresh, stir the heart and the mind; the cooing of pigeons in love, the mew of the mini kitties, the soft woofs of the pups, the gentle bleating of the lambs…the fresh sprigs of green wonder spring in from the earth, the pop of colour blooming around. It is Mother Nature, doing what a mother does, setting us up for the challenges of the year with warm fuzziness and happiness. Sprinkling bits and pieces of beautiful love brimming with promise here, there and everywhere.

Love is also a warm mug of coffee, warming the body inside out. Love is a bite of chocolate, made just right to release the happy hormones. Aah the happy hormones… Our creator clearly comprehended as he created us… how often we would require a high sans the “stuff” not encouraged. Or perhaps he was aware of our struggles each day and gave us a natural mechanism to cope with all that and more. And thus the totally marvellous “Happy Hormones” were placed in our neurological wonder. Not being a biology buff, always assumed that the happy hormones were just what the name suggests. There is more to them than just the name, there are four kinds of happy hormones endorphins, serotonin, dopamine and oxytocin. Apparently they aren’t all real hormones, but more like neurotransmitters sending happy signals to and fro. Each one of them serving a specific agenda which altogether work to keep us uplifted and carrying on. Endorphins function like natural paracetamol masking our pain to keep us kicking. Chasing the blues, serotonin has got your back. The dope on dopamine is that feeling of satisfaction you get after having achieved what you set out for. The fuzziness and mushiness of a warm hug comes courtesy our “love hormone”, oxytocin. (It is an actual hormone out of the four happy hormones.)So the four working together work as nature’s natural healing for our troubled minds and souls. How convenient that actually is but above all isn’t our body a wonderful work of art by Our creator? Love functions like the real fuel to our machines, called Homo sapiens.

Where that “love” disappears as the seasons pass on is a wonder! Our sensitivities, despite the abundance of language to express, are boxed into compartments that we deem as the end all of those feelings. It is like living believing the myth of the World being flat. Out beyond our ideas of a horizon, lies this great circle called Life, wherein a progressive rediscovery of our emotions goes on. The discovery of passions hitherto undiscovered. The discovery of ideas hitherto unthought-of by our minds, which are capable of so much more if we only try a little bit more. The realisation that what goes around comes back around.

In all spheres of life, there is one or the other form of love; sometimes known, sometimes unknown, sometimes apparent, sometimes enigmatic. One such enigmatic love is the Love our Creator holds for us. Religiously speaking, in Arabic one of the attributes of God is Al Wadud-the most loving. It is said that the love of Al-Wadud is more than any mother could ever love her child. And this love manifests itself in every single thing that we say or do. Look around, these eyes that you are looking around with, this neurological wonder making you think and make connections, your existence are all evidences of God’s love for you. God loves you so much, that this world and all its things were created so that you could benefit and live comfortably. The innumerable variety of our sustenance, the plethora of beauty in nature, things around us that you didn’t even know existed. The mysteries of the ocean to the mystique of the sky, it’s a wonderful world out there.

When you really love someone, don’t we go all out? Promise the stars and the moon and what not. So why wouldn’t our Creator who loves us more than any could ever, do even more? Our Creator, in the “love” for us created this exquisite world with all its wonderfulness that we are still discovering.

So shouldn’t we reciprocate that love? And exactly how you may wonder is that possible, well, its simple, give some love back. Share a moment with family or friends, light up someone’s dark life with your wonderful smile. Share the joy of trust, benevolence and courage. Let someone trust you to be there for them. Share your privileged life with someone not so privileged. Build the courage to stand up for what you believe in, the courage to brave the winter of life, the courage to repel the forces of evil and maliciousness.

Let us help to make this world a little warmer, a little better for you and for me and the entire human race.

SpiritualZen

Posted in Life

Clandestine Amour

I do. I sure do, in sickness and health, in good times and in bad, in success or failure and in joy as well as in sorrow. However all of this is subject to a teeny tiny asterisk, marking the terms and conditions that come in package with it.

Je t’aime…Life! My amour.

However, I can’t escape this nagging feeling that I don’t get to love you as much as I would. It seems living with you and loving you a task “burdened” with multiple roles and wanting. Each making our romance one filled with such ordeals that I may be coerced into thinking, do we really love each other as passionately as we think we do.

“Love and doubt have never been on speaking terms”. ~Khalil Gibran

I am sure he didn’t live in our situation or I don’t understand what our love is all about. I guess I should begin from the beginning to understand how I fell in love with you and how I seem to be in the state that I…well, seem to be in.

It was a coy start. I remained cocooned till I collected myself and was ready to put my best head…eh foot forward. You were there at the end of the beginning, beckoning me to come. You lured me out. There I was a bundle of unspeakable happiness in my parents’ hands having my first real good look at you. The joy that you brought with your enticing made me fall in love at first sight. I will never forget how you looked at me, reassuring me that this was the better end. You made me the reason of elation, of celebration of satisfaction and mercy. If you could make me do this, I knew you were someone I wouldn’t ever want to let go.

Little by little, day by day, you only brought me in acquaintance with awe and wonder, with adventure and risk, with love and bonding and with spirituality and consciousness.

Every day from then just followed with uninhibited meetings and brushes with you. Little did we know that this was the foundation of a love so strong that come what may nothing could uproot. But then again one can never be sure.

I got rushes every time that I was hand in hand with you. You took me along the fun and the games and the learning and growing. Candidly, we breezed along, till there came a point when I became “mature”. When I realized that my free will was only leading me to causing displeasure and discomfort. My spontaneity was only adding to fixes from which I couldn’t squeeze out of without alterations to me. You seem to have started playing hide-and-seek. And this led to our first lover’s tiff. With all that I was getting into, lifestyle changes, attitude changes and expression changes, you also decided to be the icing on my cake. I couldn’t understand you anymore. From enticing me to free will you were now asking me to succumb to people, places and systems. There were now two of me functioning. The one which you were leading to nirvana, and the one that you were leading into shackles. Little by little, day by day you only strengthened the shackles. Chaining me to the decorum of the society and system that I was living in. I was now a slave of the system. Going in day in day out with the monotony like that of a housefly. Insignificant and very very dull…

Anger and frustration built up. I did not know what to and how to deal with this sudden deluge of conformity. It was suddenly goodbye to all things that were dear to me. And above all it was suddenly a separation from you. I was at the mercy of my emotions. I was succumbing to the sin of anger. I hated everything. And this only led to indulgence of things I would be later ashamed of and I was. With you not the same that you were, I was suddenly this river which had lost its way in the desert. Rapidly drying up, desperately hunting for a reservoir of safety. I presumed you didn’t love me anymore. All our times together were merely things to do to get by. And this is when I found something which led me back. It was my anchor which weighed me down from drifting into the sea of endless despair and doom.

I met God. I was suddenly in a different plane. It was like opium rush through me. It was an inexplicable elevation. Breaking away from all that was there and I realized that I can’t give up like this. It brought me to embrace our love again. I began to understand our amour. It was not about companionship. You were trying to lead me on, I just wasn’t ready to follow you along like I used to.

“It is wrong to think that love comes from long companionship and persevering courtship. Love is the offspring of spiritual affinity and unless that affinity is created in a moment, it will not be created for years or even generations.” ~Khalil Gibran

Mind, body and soul I connected with you. Just when I was ready to renounce this world and you is when God salvaged my adrift soul. I was now able to see a different perspective. Our love was now truly cemented. Changes which I was hesitant to accept now made sense. I was apprehensive on making a choice, taking up a stance. I felt I had lost all power over myself. And that’s when I realized;

“Any change, any loss, does not make us victims. Others can shake you, surprise you, disappoint you, but they can’t prevent you from acting, from taking the situation you’re presented with and moving on. No matter where you are in life, no matter what your situation, you can always do something. You always have a choice and the choice can be power.” ~ Blaine Lee

I made the choice. I took myself back in control. And I am trying to keep the power in my hands. Its new, its raw and needs a lot of getting used to, but then again wasn’t it like this before too? Except perhaps I didn’t so consciously have to make those decisions. And now that I’m doing, I still have my doubts but I am now standing with renewed vigour and outlook. I want different things now. I wasn’t ready for that deluge of challenges that the world rained down on me. Now I stand with a new definition of success, love and dreams.

The road down spiritual awakening is alone and tough which is what puts doubts. However now that I look back I wouldn’t want to change a thing. That’s primarily because I wouldn’t have learnt the lessons I did. I wouldn’t have been so sure of our love as I am now. My doubts about our future are gradually fading into the black of our past. I wouldn’t like to sound too excited lest I cast an evil eye on our love, but I can assure you that I am definitely going to be around. I want to leave with having achieved a purpose and you alone are going to be the sole catalyst in my reactions to the world.

I would like to reach the pinnacles of success, but not in the way the masses perceive, the following sums it up beautifully;

“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

And that is when I will stop living but not loving you. Our clandestine love shall never be known but will always keep my flame in this world burning bright.