Friday, April 5, 2013

Our World, Our Vision, and Our Life

When we perceive the world with our senses, they act as camera lenses, and we get a reflection of the world within our mind. Instead of seeing each sense as a separate camera, we may see all the senses along with our mind acting together as a very sophisticated camera that gives us a reflection of the world. The reflection within our mind very much depends on the kind, quality, and power of the camera, which varies from person to person, and from community to community. It also varies as a person or a community grows older. Thus the same world is reflected differently within the mind of each person. In other words, the same world is seen differently by each person.

The world as seen by each of us is different from how it really is. Remember the story of how the same elephant is understood differently by different people who are blind. It also reminds us of the ancient parable of a piece of rope appearing to be a snake in dim light. In the story of a man who was cured of his blindness by Jesus, he saw people as trees before he was fully cured.

We can't live our life successfully unless we see the world as it really is. However, the truth is that God alone has the ability to see the world as it really is, and God alone can live a life that is perfect and fully successful. It seems impossible for humans to achieve the perfect vision of God, but we can always improve our vision if we are willing to do so.

With an improved vision, we will be able to better distinguish between right and wrong, and between important and unimportant. Someone with poor vision may waste all his life in pursuit of temporary gains and momentary pleasures, whereas someone with improved vision spends one's time wisely in pursuit of what gives lasting gains and endless joy.

Someone with poor vision won't see the right place of God, and therefore, he/she won't be able to see the right place of anything else. On the other hand, someone with an improved vision sees the right place of God, which helps him/her to assign the right place to everything else. This enables such people to build up a more successful life. It does not mean that those with an improved vision have a better understanding of God, for no one can understand God conceptually. They merely see the right place of God in the world, which is higher than anything else. Like Isaiah sees in his vision, they see God seated above everything else.

Seeing the right place of God as above everything else is the condition to praise God. Thus praising God is the primary condition for a successful life for anyone or any community. Our civilization fails to see God in the right place. In fact, it has gone to the extent of denying the very existence of God. Unless and until the humanity sees God in the right place, it will continue its travel in a path of destruction.

Once we see the place of God, we will see our own place in the world. We depend upon God for our existence. We have no existence apart from God. God alone has life in himself, we live with God's life. We need to surrender ourselves fully and completely to do the will of God. We need to follow the example of Jesus in perfectly obeying God rather than disobeying God like Adam. Seeking and doing the will of God should be our primary guiding principle in our life. We need to love God with all heart, with all our soul, with all our power, and with all our spirit.

Once we see God's place and our own place, we will also see the place of other people like us. We realize that we exist in an interdependent relationship. Each of us is like an organ of a body with one's own specific skills. God has distributed His skills and knowledge among us, and we need to serve one another in a community setting. Standing alone, each of us is disabled. Only by supporting each other in a community setting we can overcome our disabilities. We need to maintain a relationship that involves seeking and giving forgiveness. We need to love our fellow beings just as we love ourselves.

Once we see the place of God and of humanity, we will also see the place of our environment that consists of other beings-- plants and animals. With an improved vision, we see the environment as an extension of our own body, and we take care of it.

Hope and pray that we will, like the prodigal son, come back to our senses, and with an improved vision, give the right place to God, to ourselves, to our fellow beings, and to our environment.

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