Living and Leaving… Without Regret
In life many times we wish to do certain things, charitable things, and then for some reason or another, we delay and leave it for another day. But when later? That later sometimes never comes and before we know it, we have died and moved on to another existence. What must be the regret and repentance of the soul during those last moments?
This morning I had a small taste of that feeling through a dream! Of course dreams are not merely dreams; they convey messages to us; they are messengers. They come to tell us what is going on in our sub-conscious.
In the dream I was leaving for a trip and so went to the airport to check in. Once I had checked in with the luggage I was walking away from the counter, and then I realized that I was still carrying all my other hand bags. There was the hand trolley, (which I often try to avoid), there was a computer bag and my back pack. Then I stopped to ask myself: What is in these bags and why am I carrying them? I took a look inside them and it looked like a lot of stuff that I did not really need on this journey. Since the check in was done early I decided to go back home and drop off these things so that I could travel lighter.
Once home, I began to remember the things I had not packed. My favourite towel and some socks for the cold weather, my thermos, and some other items. But each time I was about to leave the house, I would remember something else and go inside and upstairs (and by the way, there is a no upstairs in our house!). I was torn between the comfort of having these things and the fear of missing the flight. And in my dream my stress was increasing every minute.
I am not usually a person that leaves things until the last minute, so the dream was surprising to me. Therefore, I felt the message underlined in the dream was something deeper: To be prepared in advance, and to travel light and carefree. Dream analyzers will have their own say in the matter. Yet I feel the dream was about more than just that flight…
It was cautioning me about the end times, and I am using this as a way to caution you too. Let us not get to the end of our life only to realize that we could have shed many things along the way. We could have done many things earlier on in our life, like today, or right now. But we just didn’t. Why? Because we were too busy… being busy!
There is a story one Arab friend used to tell me. He said there were two men, let us say the first one kept asking the second friend to go for coffee with him and to chill out a bit together. Yet the second man kept responding that he was very busy. Finally, one day the first friend could not contain himself any longer. He said: “Look, I don’t care what you are doing today, but I want to take you somewhere special. And you have to join me, no matter how busy you are.” Finally, the second man agreed. The two of them met at an appointed time and the first took him on a long drive outside the city. The second was wondering about this special place. Finally, they arrived at the cemetery. The first man said to the second, “You see all these people lying here, they never finished their business. They passed away with their business unfinished.” What was the message? That this will be our future too one day… unless we change our thinking and do the things that really count at the end of the day.
So, we will never be able to finish everything we have started in our life. Now is the time to check: What are our priorities? What are the things we will carry away in our soul? Is it our wealth and property? Or will it be our matters of the soul?
We have to check what is going on in our consciousness all day. We cannot afford to be too loose with our thinking, because those waste, negative and worrisome thoughts will be what we will be checking in at the end. And those wasted thoughts will not be of any more use to us than the unnecessary items we had packed in our baggage.
There is also a story about a young tailor who went to sleep one night. Whilst he was sleeping he started tearing the sheet that was covering him. His mother saw this and asked him: “My child, what are you doing?” He replied in his sleep, kind of half awake: “Mom, how many times have I told you not to interfere in what I am doing. I am working, can’t you see?” He thought he was in his shop and still doing some tailoring. A few minutes later, his mother asked him: “What would you like to eat my dear?” He replies, “Two metres!!” Instead of two chapatties. So what is the moral of the story? No matter what our profession, our thoughts will always go where the mind has an interest. A carpenter will always look at the wooden furniture, whilst a chef will always look for the tasty food, and the young boy wanting to become an astronaut will always be looking at the stars.
Now is the time to do the things you have always wanted to do. Do not leave things for later, because the pain of regret is the punishment the soul experiences. Do you remember those times after the exams, when you wished you had studied just that little bit more? Well, let us not have that kind of feeling when we take our last breath!
It’s Time… to check in the suitcase of the soul and travel light. What are you carrying that is simply excess baggage and makes you heavy? Check out what you don’t need before you check in.
© ‘It’s Time…’ by Aruna Ladva, BK Publications London, UK