Editorial: There is Hope


Not Losing Hope

One of the great lessons we learn from Vedanta is not to lose hope. There may be darkness all around. Everywhere around us there may be negativity. Everything may be falling apart. Expectations may all have gone wrong. Yet, says Vedanta, do not lose hope. There is a bright future.

For the simple reason that the end of the tunnel is near. There is light at the end of the tunnel. This part is dark and unknown.  We shall have to endure the darkness, disturbance etc till we are at the other end. This part is difficult because darkness terrifies us and the we can see nothing beyond.  But Vedanta says, the darkness will soon end. While some religions leave you in darkness and make you shudder with fear by their terrifying words about the your eternal life in this darkness, sanatana dharma or Vedanta smiles and says, don’t worry. It’s almost over. The end of the tunnel is near.

Listening to these words of hope, we may ask, “You say that the tunnel ends soon. But where is the end? We are seeing misery and suffering in the world since eternity.  There is no change. There are a few bright moments but then there are wars, viruses, price rise, tsunamis always. How can we be happy or hope for a bright future?”

This is confusion. Vedanta was speaking to us but we think it’s speaking to the dark world. We need not worry if the tunnel should be painted green or red. We are  passersby and we should just dash ahead.  The advice Vedanta gives is, concentrate on yourself. By worrying about the whole world’s problems, we superimpose those problems on ourselves. If we wish to drag the entire globe out of the tunnel, it’s not possible as we are too small for that. Even Hercules can’t do that. All we can do is to do a little service, or pray for others, which is essential for our own good.

The world, however, will remain the same. It will not change. We change by trying to change others. Ultimately it’s all I and I alone, The path is narrow and we shall have to leave the dark tunnel alone and reach Light.

The tunnel is this world of duality. Before was Light, after this shall be Light. We entered it alone all by ourselves due to past karma. It’s our choice that we made this world for ourselves. We created it, and we are in it. But Vedanta never teaches fatalism. Vedanta means positivity. It says, even the worst individual who is drowned in evil shall see Light.  The goal is Light and all can attain that.

Vedanta tells us that we can either pray, work selflessly, meditate, sing, do whatever good we can to overcome limitations and attain the Light. We are that Light.

May Sri Ramakrishna guide us all towards the supreme Light.

Swami Sunirmalananda