There is a wonderful greeting in the sub-continent of India. You meet somebody, look deep into his eyes, and recognize the mysterious spiritual essence hiding in him.
Then you put your palms to each other in front of your breast, bow and say, with great sincerity, ”I respectfully greet the spirit living in you!”
This is the impressive Namaste-ritual: awe and respect to the mysterious consciousness recognized in the other person. You recognize and realize that you and he are the same: transcendental spirit, a unique blossoming of the Consciousness.
We, members of the human race, are peculiar creatures. We are created on this beautiful planet, so rich in living things, as manifestations of life. On this planet, everything is a great miracle, as its very existence is a miracle in itself.
The existence of a thing is not an unavoidable necessity. Still, things do exist a rose with its unique scent, a graceful blade of grass, a wood in the forest with its rich foliage, a singing bird. Oh, what a wealth of unique beauty! And they are all alive, rooted in the Self, they are all incarnations and manifestations of life.
As children, innocent toddlers, we experience this unique magic, but when we are grown up, ”we know what the different things are.” Our mind categorizes the manifestations of the miracle: this is just a rose, a common, boring rose–that is what we think. We cut it off to inhale its unique scent, without recognizing that all such things are the wonderful expressions of life.
There is something in us, completely incomprehensible for the Mind: that is Life, something that science is only able to describe as ”complexity,” complicatedness. The miracle is therefore placed into a category, but has the unique miracle of life been thus explained? No, we have only invented a word for it. A concept has been invented, but it kills the miraculous nature of life. Life is, in fact, a great miracle: a mysterious existence as an indivisible unity, a complete Self.
In the course of our lives, we acquire beliefs, what are more, complete sets, systems of beliefs. We believe in these ideas, we do not question them, as they apparently come from sources that are reliable, important and respected for us. We swallow without chewing that this thing is ”good” and that another thing is ”bad.”
Whoever thinks in a manner similar to the way I think is a bosom friend, I love that person, and whoever thinks in a different way is a dangerous person, a stranger. You are not like me: you do not believe in what I believe. You are not a citizen of my country, you do not speak my language, your religion is different from mine. You are a stranger, so I am afraid of you and, for the sake of my own security, I am even willing and ready to destroy you.
Once you have become the lost captive of a system of beliefs, the members of other systems of beliefs cease to be living miracles for you. Instead, they might be enemies to be destroyed. In the ideological struggles of the past century only, 170 million people perished. Their death is an exclamation mark, warning us that our unconscious identification of systems of beliefs is a madness dangerous to ourselves as well as to our entire community.