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Opinion
Transformation or Ritual..!
By Robert Clements
A friend of mine came and sat next to me, he had just finished his ten rounds jogging around the park with me. "Am not going for work today," he said happily.

"Bunking?" I asked.

"For a good reason," he said, "my religious leader is giving a talk in our Gurudwara, am going to attend it."

"So we're going to see a different man tomorrow?"

"How different?" asked my friend.

"That what you hear today will be seen in you tomorrow," I said. "That you will not just attend the meeting, feel good and come out, but come out with good in you."

"Yes," said my friend, "that is my prayer also."

We walked back home and I wondered what had made me say this to him, and my mind went back to the day before. My neighbour had decided to build an illegal fencing. I went over to visit him.

"Welcome sahib, " he said, "do you mind if I complete my prayers?"

"Go ahead, " I said, "I'll wait."

My neighbour explained to me the different rituals he was doing. I watched as he sat in prayerful pose and chanted his mantras, every now and again telling me what it meant, "I am now filled with peace," he said finally, "what is it you have come to see me about?"

"It is a small matter," I said.

"I am at peace, I can deal with small matters or big matters now. What is the small matter?"

"Your fence," I said.

"What about my fence," he said in less peaceful tone.

"You have closed the pathway," I said.

"People were disturbing me by walking outside my house," he said.

"It is illegal," I said.

"Illegal!" he shouted, "You are accusing me of breaking the law?"

"If you put it like that, yes," I said.

"Who do you think you are?" he shouted.

"An affected party," I said simply.

"Are you the police?"

"No," I said.

"Then," he said walking up to me and shouting. "There is nothing you can do about that fence."

"Okay," I said, "I will report it to the police."

"You will regret if you do so, I have connections with the underworld. I will finish you off..!"

I walked away from my neighbours house. My mind was troubled, not by threats he had made to me, but that someone who one moment could be in deep prayer could turn so violent the next minute.

I wondered what sort of person I was? Did I go to church on Sunday, say my prayers, sing hymns, do all the rituals and feel good, or did I come out transformed?

bobsbanter@gmail.com


News Updated at : Wednesday, April 11, 2018
 
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