Spiritual Intelligence versus Just Cleverness
Meditation Commentary – Spiritually Aware
Music by Hariprasad Chaurasia
Many of us can be clever in the game of life, and we may even win. But will it win us the blessings in the frame of eternity? Being clever per se, is not a spiritual trait, being smart is. The type of clever being talked about here is the one in which others lose when you play to win. There are many smart people in the world, but they will never become gurus, because to become a spiritual leader one needs a pure heart and not an agenda driven intellect.
There are many smart people in the world, but… to become a spiritual leader one needs a pure heart and
not an agenda driven intellect.
To drive the subject home… Once we were in a large gathering. At the end we had to line up and get our gifts. One of the girls hurried in front of everyone, (Yes, pushed in!), and got her gift and she was on her way to lunch to escape the next queue – the lunch queue! She gave me a grin that I will never forget! The kind that speaks volumes: ‘See how clever I am’, ‘I am out of here faster than you are!’ And where was she headed… to just another queue!
The same is true for car drivers. When there is a turn to the left or right just ahead, then some smart alec comes up right beside all those patiently waiting. He decides that he is ‘going to be cleverer’ and just pushes into the queue. Well, we can all be that clever if we want to be. But some of us choose to be other things, such as fair and friendly, or kind and ethical. Because the spiritual person understands this, especially as we live in community that we need to honour each other and not harass others.
Isn’t this true for many things in life. We can all rush in there and get what we want. But the big question for the spiritually intelligent person will be: Is this kind of behaviour giving happiness, or giving sorrow to someone? Is it an act of kindness or an act of ego? For those who have such a tender heart to care, they will exercise patience, tolerance and fairness.
Here are some differences between the spiritual vs the too clever:
Inner Work v Outer Work
The spiritual person will work on the inside and from the inside out, they will be introverted. Whereas the too clever will work on the outside, ensuring that everything is looking good around, they will be extroverts. For them everything must ‘look’ good for even if internally they feel lousy. If they can get what they want, then they feel happy inside. Why? Because they think they are clever by achieving it! Whereas someone spiritual will feel happy first, and then everything will work out. In the example of the queue, someone may even offer for them to come to the top of the queue! And even if nothing works out that’s ok, because that’s the way it’s meant to be. It is not a measure of their capability. They are content.
Innocence v Arrogance
As has been mentioned, the spiritually enlightened person will choose to stay innocent because they are wise, not because they are stupid. It means to stay pure and create positive thoughts i.e. not to entertain any doubtful or deceitful thoughts about others. Not to question the intention of others – and always to give them the benefit of the doubt. Whereas the clever one will be accusatory and blaming, trying to put others down whilst trying to prove themselves to be right. Now, do not get fooled into thinking that the one that gives the benefit of the doubt is a simpleton. No. That wise person is protecting themselves from creating a world of suspicion and fear in which they will have to live.
Silence v Sound
The spiritual person enjoys the silence. Making big things small. Putting a full stop and not expanding on things, especially if they really are trivial or will not have meaning. The clever person enjoys sound, or should we say noise… Always their bark is louder than their bite! They will try to prove themselves right with justifications and overtones. Making situations look bigger than they are whether negative or positive. They find they must fill that space with sound. Whereas the spiritual person is happy with the silent mind. They can hear so much in the silence which the clever one cannot hear even in sound!
(the spiritual) can hear so much in the silence
which the clever one cannot hear even in sound!
Altruistic v Selfish
The spiritual person will act in the interest of the whole. The clever will think of the ‘I’; only me first! As in the case of the queue: ‘How can I get what ‘I’ want first?’ Then I will see if I can help others. Because the spiritual one is always full or more or less full, they can give without measuring. Whereas the clever minded one will see what is in it for them before giving anything away.
Cool (Mr. Tortoise) v Hot (Mr. Hare)
The clever person will always want to get ‘there’ first, wherever there is! Thinking, believing that is the way to be happy. The spiritual one is patient and happy just to wait and see how things pan out; taking decisions with caution and not jumping into things as the hare does! The clever one may think they are being smart! But who wins in the end! The slow and steady tortoise!
Responsibility v Blame
The spiritually aware are mature, they take responsibility for their thoughts, feelings, actions and life. Unlike the clever who often turn to blame, which is totally disempowering and immature. It is so easy to blame someone or something for things not going right for us in our life. Indeed, this seems to be why we may find that some people’s lives are in such a mess today. No one wants to be responsible, and we are all looking to pin the blame somewhere else. Being responsible is not a sign of weakness, but being responsible shows that we are willing to learn and grow from situations. We actually become stronger and more resilient because we are taking responsibility. Always pointing the finger at others keeps us in a place of weakness.
…spiritual person finds that the
universe conspires to help them
Flow vs Force
Perhaps the most important of all is that the spiritual person finds that the universe conspires to help them. There is a natural flow in their life and everything just simply works out. Which is another cause to be happy. Whereas for the clever person, because they have such a big ego, the universe says to them: ‘OK. Do it! Show me!’ And so, there is a lot of struggle and labor in their lives. They feel they are the ones who have to keep pushing things to happen all the time. And that can be very tiring in the long run.
It’s time… to choose between being spiritually wise or just cleverness. It pays to renounce the ego of cleverness and to become humbly spiritual. In the end we want to happy and not just right.
© ‘It’s Time…’ by Aruna Ladva, BK Publications London, UK