This term “individual” or better still individuality is one that strikes a chord deep inside the heart of many. Some admit to it,some recognise it, some actually do not know what it is about and would love to know more. Thus we all search for this individuality in many ways, spheres and in different areas of life. One interesting area most people turn to is, spirituality. Now unfortunately spirituality has been replaced with Religion, ( a topic for another day). However lets focus on religion for now.
Every Religion on this planet to some degree acknowledges the fact that we have some level of uniqueness or individuality and to the degree we understand this individuality we can better understand who we are and further ask questions like, why am I here? Where do I go from here? And what is the goal of life? Having said that, isnt it ironical that we all start out so eagerly trying to discover this “uniqueness” or individuality and then sacrifice this very individuality on the guise of religion, comformity, institutionalization, mentorship, discipleship etc. Isnt it ironical that the very factor in which our freedom lies in becomes the very factor we choose to neglect the most? Isnt it ironical that the very factor which makes us unique in our relationship with God, is the very factor we choose to trade in the name of conformity.
Now I know some of you might ask, so what are you driving at? Well simple put: the very first philosophy newcomers learn in gaudiya vaisnava siddhanta (knowledge) is that we are infinitesimal, distinct, individual souls who are part and parcel of the supreme. If this is the basis, then why lose this for anything. There would definitely be logical perspectives of conformity in terms of institution however it shouldn’t over ride the basic philosophy. I wish to keep these blogs short and simple, so that my readers are not drowned in a pool of information, thus on a concluding note we should all remember that whatever addition or extension of our search in life especially in religion that doesnt bring us closer to the ultimate goal which is rendering pure service to the Divine Lord, in our “unique mood or individuality”, is more or less a distraction.
This in no way promotes capricious actions, but actions true to one’s self guided by sastra.