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 Blooming Stars

God or Mammon

            Whether we like it or not we have to choose our loyalty. The choice by de fault currently appears to be mammon, that is, material wealth. Christ talks about the ruler of this world (John, 12: 31; 14: 30, 16:11) who to me is the mammon, more specifically the money of the consumer society. Christ also said that we cannot have two maters or two mistresses. Either we serve God or we serve mammon (Matthew 6:24). It is also mentioned that the ruler of this world is being judged, and the ruler of this world cannot have power over us unless we freely choose it. The question then is: Are we freely allowing mammon to exert its charming and tempting power over us?

            After having made enough money to live for the remaining years of my life I returned to India in 2006 from the US to live my dream (mission) by serving God and humanity in the state of Kerala where I was born. One of my close relatives was not happy about my giving up such a well-paying job in order to return. I did not understand him as I thought he would be happier with my physical presence. Gradually I figured out that my money was more important than my presence in their midst for the reason they thought that I would not be spending as much money now on them as I used to before when I was employed. Some relatives were not also happy that I would financially help people irrespective of religion and blood relationship. It looks like some of them felt that they were entitled to the hard-earned money. What is more interesting was that they were comparing the amounts of money that I was giving to different relatives. It also looked like they knew better than I as to who deserved what. When I did not fall for their control of my life and affairs, and when I consciously chose a lifestyle that did not include liquor and non-vegetarian diet, gradual estrangement began. My estrangement is almost complete now with some powerful institutions and vested interests on account of also my advocating spirituality beyond religions, relationships beyond blood, and a civic life without contributing money to political parties. Going against corruption as a way of life, and taking life into my own hands not caring for meaningless rites and dead rituals, and questioning doctrines and dogmas handed down from generations after generations do not also make my life easy. I did not fit into the mold they had created and live by.

            That mammon is the goal and source of power came very strongly to me the other day when I read the shocking news in the media on, May 30, 2016, about the gruesome murder of a father by his son that took place after a bitter dispute related to property in Chengannoor, Kerala. The 68-year old father made his money in Texas (US) for his three sons. The son living in India felt he was not given the financial consideration he deserved. The father in anger trained a US-made gun on his son who in the scuffle got the gun from his father, shot him, killed him, and cut his body into four pieces and disposed them in four places to destroy evidence. I know how hard the Indians work in Texas (or elsewhere) to make their money as I stop at that place and spend a few days there to visit some relatives before I move on to Missouri. I knew bitter disputes were common over money and property that ended close relationships all over the world. But for hatred to get so much out of hand was extremely unusual. I have come to the conclusion with clear personal evidence that money is behind most, if not all, of the disputes, betrayals of trust, quarrels, and estrangement. It used to be said that money can buy almost anything except a father and a mother. Now with frozen sperms and eggs for eventual fertilization that scenario is also changing!

            Where am I currently? I am moving along in search of new insights into human behavior and the Force (God) beyond humanity. What do I have going for me? The courage of my convictions and silence and solitude to mull over and deepen my awareness of who I am and what I am about. The precious lessons learnt at enormous costs from the past and the on-going discernment of choices before me helps me immensely. The questions before me always are: Am I faithful to my conscience? Am I faithful to my God-given mission as I discern it to be? Am I using my resources for the welfare of humanity? I am aware that my life is not pleasurable to the senses as I follow a strict diet to take care of my health the best way. I greatly emphasixe nutritional eating. But then I am aware that this is a result of the choices I continue to make. I must also say that I am beginning to sense a pleasure and satisfaction beyond senses. So I am not missing the sensual pleasures. In fact sensual tastes are more than amply compensated. Alone with God and the good of humans in mind, anything is bearable and satisfactory beyond all fleeting sensual pleasures. When a close young relative of mine in a high position told me the other day that she periodically calls me so I would not feel lonely, I told her that I am beyond loneliness or I prefer to choose loneliness to other less appealing choices. In fact I do not have time to feel lonely. And as I do not cherish others pitying me, I told her that she should not waste her and my time calling me unless the call is mutually beneficial. I am also aware that it is beneficial to say what needs to be said when things are happening, of course with due circumspection and taking the prevailing circumstances into account. I am also analyzing things less and less, unless specifically asked for, as I know persons seem to feel better without analysis and without being put on the spot.

            As Christ said our heart is where our treasure is. Is our heart then with God or mammon?


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