Spirituality Doesn't Involve God

Posted on: Monday, May 11, 2015


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Khurshed Batliwala wasn’t even out of IIT when a friend ‘bulldozed’ him into doing the Art Of Living course.

A student of mathematics in IIT Bombay, his grades improved and his culinary talent blossomed. That was 25 years ago. He now teaches the course that he owes this success to full-time, and runs the cafe at Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s ashram in the city.

He says he has found spirituality and maths to be complementary.

“Maths is logical and precise at one level, but as you enter the higher realms, a lot can depend upon intuition. Maths can be quite meditative,” he muses.

After decades of aping the West, there’s a comeback in the present generation to the roots, he has observed. “They are so interested in Indian culture, and are well informed,” he adds.

This is a culture that has stood the test of time, and who demystifies it better than Sri Sri, he asks.

Meditation and yoga in particular and spirituality in general have nothing to do with God, he feels. “Doesn’t everyone want to be successful and happy? That’s what the course helps you become. Only those stubborn or very set in their ways resist it,” he says.

The course brings him in touch with a diverse set of people, and he continues to learn from their questions and problems.

“I say, they become happier and we become wiser,” says Bawa, as he’s better known.

Ask him if spirituality is being run more and more like a business, and he says that the commerce angle helps lend an aspect of practicality to it.

“It’s probably easier to go be a yogi in the Himalayas than it is to live amid your family here and still be happy,” he says. “After all, Lakshmi, the Goddess of wealth, and Narayana, the God of knowledge, are married to each other. Why divorce them?”

Bawa enjoys teaching immensely, even when it’s not the Art of Living course.

In the upcoming course, to be conducted from Friday to Sunday, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar will teach a couple of the sessions. “It doesn’t happen very often, so for those who haven’t done the course yet, this would be a great opportunity. And if you’ve already done it, well you know what it is. And there’s nothing like getting it from the horse’s mouth.”

Source: New Indian Express

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