The Blunder of Busyness


The whole idea of being busy in this modern world seems to me, to be more of an obsessive-compulsive disorder in today's society. Most people living in big cities spend too much time travelling and resolving issues that do not really add anything to their quality of life, intelligence or consciousness. It has become an obsession to try to make more and more money, to have more wealth and to become more popular and famous, but really, without having the time to enjoy the benefits of this hard work and wealth. Such self imposed busyness is an attempt to increase production and productivity but often results in the reverse, instead, becoming more of a self imposed punishment. Often, one sees people working harder than they need to, with some kind of tunnel vision. I have often seen people make themselves so busy, that they even ignore the needs of their body treating it worse than a machine. After some period of time these people fall sick, such sickness often being a warning from nature to take heed, to mend one's ways & lifestyle and eventually, the illness forces these persons to take time off to pay attention to their body and mind. The paradox lies in the fact that most of the people in this world seek happiness and therefore work towards a better quality of life, but an ailing body, is as far from happiness and a quality life, as can be.  Instead, most people even while possessing large amounts of wealth still feel hollowness and a purposeless in life. This whole attitude of busyness needs change.

There is but yet another dimension of this busyness that lies in the attitudes and psychology of the person. Some people believe that by making themselves busy they are more in demand, while some others use this busyness as a way to shield themselves from deeper contact with family and friends. This fake busyness is not more demand but merely a created impression of being in demand by lulling one's mind to believe that they are wanted, all the while lacking the courage to face reality and lacking the depth to have deeper emotions and emotional understanding with family, friends and colleagues. It is actually a cover for an emotionally maladjusted person who is unable to mix with others and feels safer with machines. But more than that, the person is even afraid of himself/herself and is not ready to face their own issues. By throwing things under the carpet, issues do not vanish, they keep lying below the surface of the visible mind, simmering, sometimes erupting out and the person seems a little out of control, only to temporarily regain control. The unresolved issues remain there till they can no more, often bursting out violently with deep implications on mental and/or physical health. Such busyness is not needed for it only leads to pain.

The world has become so used to looking busy that many people see Spiritual persons, Sadhaks, Sannyasis as lazy or non productive, but I think this is very far from the truth. A sannyasi, a sadhak much like an artist, a writer, a creative personality needs time. The artist, writer, creative person needs this time to be able to relax the body and mind, to take a step back then to look at life from a distance, reflect on life and then intelligently/intellectually come up with a new idea. Often this time is needed to view the whole picture from a distance, to also allow the mind to throw out from within an idea or an inspiration that will help create. Without this time for reflection, the mind cannot really create or think up anything new, for at most times it is crammed with so much nonsense that there is no place or time to be able to exercise this creative ability. In the same way, a sadhak needs time to allow the mind to quieten down and then to rearrange the blocks of consciousness within oneself. Without having this time to quieten down, one cannot achieve the possibility of having any meaningful or deep spiritual practice. A noisy mind is only a source of stress and pain, whereas a quiet mind is the source of peace, joy, creativity and happiness. The mind in some ways works like a storage bin, if you blunder and throw in garbage, garbage comes out, while if you are wise and put in thoughts and images of peace, it brings about peace.

The reality is that each human wants to feel wanted, loved, happy and at peace but the present lifestyle of Megapolises is very far from helping sustain such a state. If anything, travelling over large distances, the effects of too much interaction with people, the effect of all the modern technological communication gadgets, television, radio, internet, mobile phone have all lead to an overload of sense stimuli that is only counterproductive to the well being of each human. To add to this, the individual has encouraged themselves to be surrounded by all this noise and sense stimuli leaving very little possibility for the self to quieten the mind. The result is short attention spans, more stress, frayed nerves, short tempers, greater intolerance, more sickness, poorer health, a disturbed mind, and lower productivity. Not the best factors for an effective business person, let alone for an effective spiritual practice.

In today's world few persons are able to manage their time well and are often found arriving late for most meetings and appointments, with the usual excuses being too much traffic, too much work, accidents, and so on. In simple words, they have taken on more than they can physically do and seem to be spending too much time on material works with almost no time for themselves. In real life, one has to choose a balance between money and the rest. Life has so much more to offer than being busy all the time with the meaningless, while we miss out on the essence of life. Somewhere one has to choose between time for oneself, and money. You have to make a conscious decision to give yourself the gift of time. This time for some people may be best spent with the people they love, with family and friends. But for those who seek to change their consciousness, this is time best spent on themselves.

Most persons will realise what a simple holiday can do for them. It relaxes them and renews their body, mind and spirit. But if one has to reach a deeper level of peace and calm, one has to change much more. One has to be able to lead a quieter life, with time for one's self, to be able to integrate one's work, personal and spiritual life; to bring about harmony between the outer and the inner world. One has to decide to stop running away from one's self, to give themselves the gift of time and the possibility of deeper purpose, of values and meaning, of deep spiritual transformation, of a more natural and beautiful life; of a quieter and meaningful death. Everyone in this world is born, grows up, earns money, looks after himself/herself and their family and eventually dies. That is not the purpose of human life. The purpose of human life is to give it deeper meaning, to reach great spiritual depths, and to free one's self from this repeated cycle of Birth and Death; to become enveloped in Knowledge, Wisdom, Light, Love, Compassion and to realise the Self.

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