“I see all people rushing full speed into Your mouths, as moths dash to destruction in a blazing fire.”
– Bhagavad Gita (11.29)
My close shave and the subsequent epiphany taught me a sacred lesson.
‘Slow’ gives spiritual insight
If I hadn’t slowed down, I’d have likely carried the fearful experience with me for the rest of the day. Or if I would have busied with some activity and forgotten the dreadful episode, I’d have missed going deeper into my inner self. Instead, fortunately, I chose to pause and slowly connect with myself. As a result I was now in a safe space – the area of undying soul.
Death and suffering is a reality of this world. And fear a concomitant factor. In the serene nature, we see birds pick up worms, snakes gobble up frogs, and cruel time spares none. Yet, we constantly seek peace, often living in denial of the surety of death and suffering.
We can’t afford to be a pessimist nor can we allow toxic positivity to accentuate our deep rooted fears. The only reasonable alternative is to face and accept the reality of our fragile existence, and move on with grace.
And it’s here that slowness in general and conscious breathing in particular comes handy.
We are not promoting a slow movement; we only appeal to ‘balance’ – speed and slowness go in tandem.
The Speed of the Mind
If you ride a Koeingsegg Jesko Absolut, you’d touch 300 km/hr. Imagine you drive a car that is five times faster, on a circular road that in turn lay on a gigantic vehicle that sped at 107,000 km/hr or 30 kilometres per second!
That’s precisely the speed at which you and I are travelling, this very moment!
The earth moves on its own axis at 1,600 km/hr and then around the sun hundred times faster; yet each human who resides on this earthly car has a mind that wildly spins at an incalculable speed! If you let your mind imagine that you are on the sun now, you’d have travelled 150 million kilometres in just a second! Light –with its speed of 300,000 km/second – is a tiny garden snail in comparison.
And what do you think this speed does to your overall well-being? An overactive mind keeps you disconnected from your true self just as if you ride the ‘incredicoaster’ at Disneyland for just a minute, you’d feel disoriented and severed from your immediate reality. Only when you are out of it can you gather your wits.
Likewise, while navigating through the roller coaster rides of this world, when you pause and breathe, you slow down the mind. If you drive at a break neck speed it’s not easy to keep control of the car. Life’s rushing fast but if you pause, you would not only have more control over your life, you’d also achieve more.
“It was sunsets that taught me that beauty sometimes only lasts for couple of moments, and it was sunrises that showed me that all it takes is patience to experience it all over again.” – A.J. Lawless
What’s the logic of slowing down?
“The mode of passion is born of unlimited desires and longings, O son of Kunti, and because of this the embodied living entity is bound to material fruitive actions.”
(Bhagavad Gita 14.7)
To be continued….