Monday, 1 August 2011

7 Easy ways to be a monk in the material world

Kindly ignore my inclination to turn into a hermit. It is a feeling that comes and goes like a rain cloud. I have no idea why I have a fondness for reclusive life.  But it might have something to do with the fact that I often get immensely annoyed at my fellow human beings and have a tough time trying to detach myself from the absurdity of it all. I’m sure a lot of people feel that way. So for their benefit and mine, I tried to create a list of ways in which one can be a monk in the material world and achieve some much needed ‘inner peace’ while at it.
Some of these ways might actually work. The others are…well, funny. So here goes:

1. Enroll in a law school and complete the course. By the time you’re
done studying the various laws of our country and how blatantly   most of them are disregarded, you’ll have achieved a wonderful sense of enforced optimism that is so essential in life.

2. Get a dog and potty-train it. Try not to get mad at it if it continues
to poop indoors. Persuade it into obeying you with kind gestures and sweet words. This way, you have a dual accomplishment. A well trained dog and superb tolerance for shit. You’ll get a lot of the latter all throughout life.

3. Get married. Yes, as ironic as it sounds, there is no better way to
learn patience and understanding. The downside is that only one of you will learn it. The other will act as the subject of your patience and understanding. Oh, and don’t forget love. Coz as they say, love makes all things possible. (I am trying hard to stifle a giggle as I type this out)

4. Work for little or no remuneration. Because, almost all holy
scriptures (and your parents and elders) will teach you to work hard without expecting returns. The Gita says, ‘Karmanye vadhika raste maa faleshu kadachana’. For the uninitiated, it means, Work without expecting your efforts to bear fruit. This also has a dual purpose. But not for the one practicing it. His/her boss though shall rejoice forever. And HR departments will have a field day.

5. Write a last will and testament and bequeath all your material
belongings to whoever you want to. Relax. Your stuff is not going to be taken away from you unless you die. But you’ll have a chance to enjoy the fleeting sentiment of renouncing material pleasures without actually giving them away. (Try and keep things within the family. You don’t want a stranger using your prized Tag Heur)

6. Give up social networking. Voila! Instant detachment.

7. Eat fruits, berries, nuts and other natural foods. (Yes. exotic and
expensive fruits are fine. Stock up on Kiwi fruits, Blue berries, Mangosteen, Durians and the like. Eat Walnuts, Almonds and Apricots. Side effects shall include constant nagging by your family as you will have slowly driven them to the financial drycleaners with your ‘healthy’ eating habits. But health comes at a cost, no?)

So while the above may or may not work, it is essential to just keep trying. Perseverance pays, you know. And for the record, I am trying or have already tried the above and I hereby pronounce the methods as highly effective. Good luck to you though! Its easier said than done.

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