This is a controversial sphere, I will admit. But it is a fundamental thing most of us or our parents have done. It is something thing I rebelled against to the point of cancelling all relations with my step-dad and mum (whom I later reconnected with), as they chose to suppress my dreams and destiny to the point of turning me into another slave (harsh as it sounds, it is apt) who does accounting to earn some money.
I got a job and I said no. I wanted to do what truly gave my heart peace. It wasn’t easy. Taking on Indian parents comes at a great price – near-poverty being one. But despite whatever physical hardships came my way and which still persist to a great deal today, I have never been at greater peace and bliss with myself. I thought it was impossible. But I did exactly what I knew the voice within would have me do, what would bring me bliss and Godly peace. At that moment, even within that crunch-time, I felt God within me and there is nothing I will ever trade it for. I finally found God in doing what the voice of God told me to do.
In time, in fulfilling this duty of mine, of obeying the voice within, I became extremely unsettled by how people continued idolatry. I had a red thread that was once tied on my right arm, which I cut and made sure to dump it in the dustbin. I won’t forget that moment – I felt pride, unspeakable pride in the depths of my heart. I was 17 then. Over time, I ensured I would not obey the dogma of ‘idols are holy’ and not put my faith and sincerity in idols. However, saying this out loud is controversial enough to get one killed.
Now, I’m probably more religious than most I know, but for me, the voice of God is the one that tells me what I ought to do at a given moment – what at that given moment will bring me contentment. And it is a duty to have that goodwill and seek that contentment, while naturally wishing those around us find it too (this comes without saying, we only ever need to hate to stymie this). A manifestation of God is my soul, which is what gives me purpose which non-living tables and chairs do not have. God is divine, God guides within, God resides within unless we choose to defy natural law and delve into hate, egotism, status-worship and authoritarianism.
I learnt this stuff in time, and I believe it to be the truth. The question being, can the self-proclaimed Hindu majority of our nation (and the other religionists) question their beliefs?
Do you need to bow down to statues? You know you do not, but it is the egotism of “Hey, this is my identity, if I give it up I will be left with none and that will make me inferior to others (who are naturally judged by their identities in such a worldview).” Can you defy your egotism and actually take the step towards self-love, reason, courage, inner bliss and love for others? If you’ve stopped bowing down to idols – it tells me that you have.