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Do You Need Google Maps For Heaven?

But why should finding God need an MBA or a Google Map? If that was the case how would an illiterate farmer’s hand working in a field in Madhya Pradesh find God or Heaven?

Everybody reading this knows about success, strategy and preparation.

They know that if you have to achieve something you have to work hard, apply yourself, keep evolving your strategy.

Take the Vice President in charge of a taxi fleet in North America. He has probably done an MBA so he knows how to manage people. He needs to study the market and plan a strategy that he perfects over the years. He may need to work late into the night analysing commuter trends. And he sure as anything needs to access and examine Google Maps to find out which routes his drivers need to take.

Now how about if we apply the question to spirituality. Do you need to study, prepare and learn to make your way to God? Or does it happen like a miracle?

Do you need a Google Map to Heaven or does the path just open by itself at the right time?

Centuries ago the guys who wrote the Upanishads — a really mind-blowing set of scriptures which Shri Aurobindo described as “the supreme work of the Indian mind” studied life and death in micro detail. For example when one of them was dying the others would surround him and through minute finger gestures he would try and indicate which of his senses was shutting down first.

It was studies and experiences like these that taught them the metaphysics of life. I too belong to a group that studies many aspects of spirituality. We study the virtues of Kindness, Humility, Compassion and Freedom from anger. We learn breath control (which I really suck at) and different meditation techniques. Among other things we study the ways of the Sufis — probably the coolest bunch of saints that ever lived.

(I mean like who else would ever say such amazingly transcendent stuff like “Come along  … join us desperate band of people who have gambled everything on the possibility that God exists!”)

So now tell me. Do you have to know all this or study this stuff to find God or does he come and find you?

After all, the definition of a Miracle is something that happens surprisingly and suddenly. Like winning a lottery. Or being the only survivor in a car accident. Or feeling the presence of a greater power and beating an incurable disease.

Does finding enlightenment happen the same way? If you are a good person do you attain self-realisation through a heavenly bolt of  lightening? Or do you need regular prayer and is that enough? Or do you have to study the scriptures, understand the messages of the saints, practice extreme discipline and ‘work’ your way into higher realms.

That Vice President of the Taxi fleet is not going to achieve his targets through being a good person. Nor will he beat his competitors by praying (though that may help I guess). He has to strategise, plan, work hard and diligently and then he may achieve.

But why should finding God need an MBA or a Google Map? If that was the case how would an illiterate farmer’s hand working in a field in Madhya Pradesh find God or Heaven? Surely he deserves to — because everyone has to have an equal right to the divine.

What do you think?

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