Sunday, February 1, 2009

Do actions speak louder than thoughts?

I read an article today that weighed a person's actions against his thoughts. Do a person's actions alone decide his goodness or should the genuinity of his thoughts and feelings count. To elaborate, is it okay if we perform "good" deeds however disgruntled we may be while doing so; whatever ulterior motives we may have while doing so; whatever thoughts and feelings may motivate the act? For ultimately the world only concerns itself with acknowledging a good deed. You are good and honourable for the world because "actions speak louder than words". Does it then become okay when the page3 types indulge in some "social work" to be in their coveted p3 space? For they are doing a good deed whatever the motivation. Then what is the difference between them and a Mother Teresa or a Baba Amte? Why are they then not spoken of in the same exalted tones as the highly awarded Mother Teresa and Baba Amte? I am in no way pushing the cause of the p3 people but there has to be something amiss somewhere. If actions are all that count then the acts of these differently-motivated people should be at par. But they are most definitely not. So does not then the thought or motivation behind the act become prime. Should not then the thoughts or feelings leading to an act be given weightage? For these two great social workers acted on what they felt and felt with their heart what they chose to act on. And that is what made them great. So can we then conclude that genuineness of thought behind an act leads to a higher state of being.

I was part of a course recently that spoke of completing with the people in your life for healthy relationships. Completions involve a complete owning up of all past hurts, negative feelings, disappointments etc vis-a-vis the same people. Is it really possible to live a life of such high integrity? Apart from the high risk of losing the love of your loved ones after owning up to all the negative thoughts that crossed your mind regarding them i think there lies the practical problem of mouthing completionns 24x7. So does it then not make us all hypocrites where we are mouthing platitudes of love but at the same time thinking negatively of our loved ones. Not a high state of being at all.

I have a healthy relationship with my mother-in-law, we don't get into each other's hair a lot, respect each other's privacy so to say. But if i were to admit to her that in the initial years of my marriage i found her a "Lalita Pawar", dreading her totally, i think it could be the end of our happily working relationship.I may be playing it safe by not completing with her on this count, but i think the philosophy to follow here should be "let sleeping dogs be". There has to be a limit to the extent to which you wish to complete with people, YOU have to draw a line on that. A very convenient state of being.

Purity of thought and feeling is a highly admirable quality, something that all of us should strive for. Once you attain control over your thoughts and feelings you come close to being a "Mahapurush". Noble thoughts will lead to noble deeds and that is when the dilemma ends for you. Jai Ho to that!

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