An Indian Civilizational Perspective

Business of Spirituality

Was talking to a friend on Spiritual issues last night and the phenomenon of religions. There was a part of discussion where he remarked that the need of the general public to “know” which forces the Enlightened Masters to give them the knowledge in shape of religious instructions.

Now, maybe the Masters or the Saints dont “need” to give the instructions, but the “need” of the public forces them.

My thought is – is this a “need” of the public or a “want/desire”? How are these desires (or need if you want it that way) any different from that for, say money? A poor guy needs money and food first – and most of these people who throng the Religious gatherings are fairly poor – so money is definitely what they want as well. Why doesnt a Saint who GIVES IN to the request for religious instruction need also give in to the need to give money?! Sure these two needs/wants only differ in terms of objects of desire.. the mechanism is exactly the same. The misery that comes with desire and its apparent fulfillment is ditto! So, WHY satisfy ONE need (and call it holy) while frown upon the other one?

That is the problem of religion and the Saints. They are no different from the Supermarket salesmen. They are in the “business” of satisfying needs. Supermarket salesman satisfies one need and Gurus/Saints satisfy another one! None solve the root of the problem.

People go to religious congregation to “learn” … to “seep” in more wisdom.. but is that how desires/wants/needs are taken care of? Instead of listening to instructions.. people should be thinking through their own issues and looking at their minds. If you do not want to then that’s ok! Spirituality cannot and should not be a “HARD SELL”!

Religious congregations and such gatherings make religion no different than selling coke!

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