Indian Culture · Inner View · Personal reflections

Be Still, My Heart…



As the Northeast monsoon meets the Bay of Bengal, the rain gods have been showering upon us their bounty, sometimes a bit too excessively. But that’s life, the good and the bad often come together. Though at the time we can’t see the good in what appears as the bad. Or vice versa.

On this rainy, wet day my thoughts keep going back to last year’s Diwali.

Much was happening with me on the emotional level because of things I could hardly control in any way. Or anyone else could. As the time passes, we slowly recognize that such life-experiences come to help us learn how to go with the flow of things and stay as calm as possible underneath all the turmoil on the surface.

Like the sea. All the surf is on the shore; as the eyes move farther and farther from the shore they see the sea in all its calm vastness. The mighty waves come one after another, hitting the shore and receding one by one, but all this activity is on the surface; in its deepest depths the sea remains untouched, calm.

Can I be like the sea? Can I be that still, deep within?

A calmness does descend when I listen to this calming composition from Pandit Ronu Majumdar, Ry Cooder and Jon Hassell, titled – Bay of Bengal. Appropriate for today.


Interestingly, when so much was happening on the surface during last year’s Diwali and the days leading up to it, one thing that helped me stay grounded within was contemplating on the inner meaning of Diwali. What does this festival of lights really signify? One such contemplation expressed itself in these words:

Light the Inner Incense, the incense stick seems to say. Let those wanderings help uncover and reveal all that is dark, all that needs to be purified. Remember that only in the slow burning of the outer form the inner true purpose is lived out, the humble stick shows by example. Let the gradual unveiling of the outer layers help uncover and reveal the real reason for existence – to aspire toward Light, to spread Sweet Fragrance all around.

To read more of this contemplation, visit the post: Light an Incense

Image: one evening at home, Suhas Mehra

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