This summer, Julia Roberts is going to be in a film based off Elizabeth Gilbert’s essential and spiritually wonderful novel Eat, Pray, Love. The mainstream West (now including Hollywood!) is finally being warmed up to Eastern ideas of spirituality and religion. It’s a revolution I’d say.
To go hand in hand with this so-I-call-it ‘spiritual revolution’ is another revolution, in the world of psychology. The last decade much of research has dedicated it’s energies to the psychology of happiness. How to attain it, keep it, share it, even what our brains look like when we have it. I know, what a wonderful aspect of life to make empirical, but it’s beneficial to the progress of society as a whole in my opinion.
At the heart of this psychology of happiness is the idea of balance, or internal equilibrium. Religions of the east encourage finding this balance, and that is there that you will find your eternal bliss, amongst life’s chaos.
GIlbert puts this perspective into her book perfectly, comparing the western and eastern tradition of how the injustices of the world are viewed and dealt with in the eye of religion,
“The [other] objective of religion, of course, is to try to make sense of our chaotic world and explain the inexplicabilities we see playing out here on earth everyday… The Western tradition says, “It’ll all get sorted out after death, in heaven and hell.” Over in the East, though, the Upanishads shrug away any attempt to make sense of the world’s chaos. Furthermore, the Upanishads suggest that so-called chaos may have an actual divine function, even if you can’t personally recognize it now: “The Gods are fond of the cryptic and dislike the evident.” The best we can do then, in response to our incomprehensible and dangerous world, is to practice holding equilibrium internally— no matter what insanity is transpiring out there.”
I believe finding this equilbirium is the most basic function of spirituality, necessary for all other aspects. I also believe that balance is the power of sucess in life. I dedicate these writings to the continuous lesson on balance and the bliss that can be found there!