F is for Faith
Soren Kierkegaard the Danish Existentialist philosopher termed faith as “the highest passion in a human being.”
The concept of faith is as vast as the universe itself, for it envelops the whole of humanity in its blessed fold. The idea of faith took birth when man first appeared on the earth. Living in jungles at the mercy of natural forces, man created his own icons of faith to overcome his fears and to survive amidst extremely hostile environs. Over the ages, the notion of faith in one form or the other became the essence and an inseparable part of man’s existence.
Faith as a lexical item denotes deep trust and confidence in one’s beliefs, which with time, mature into an aspirational urge to take care of our life and steer it forward wholesomely.
Faith has various manifestations, which, dwell within us. As citizens of our country, we repose faith in its constitution and other institutions, whose mechanisms indirectly ensure righteous governance through administrative checks and balances. In a democracy, we elect our representatives in the hope that they will legislate and then execute laws keeping in view the welfare of the people. Then we have faith in our judicial system to mete out justice through legal means, to those who knock at its door for the reparation of the wrongs done to them.
Well, we have faith in modern medicine to cure us and look after our physical and psychological well being.
Our deep faith in the tenets of our religion provides us mental strength to face untold miseries which keep propping up unannounced. Faith makes us conscious of the realities of life, concomitantly reminding us of the basic mission of uniting decisive forces around us.
Faith is subjective and an inner affirmation. Like a lighthouse, it illumines a safe path to traverse through rough terrains of life. However, faith remains an existential enigma and a miracle that belies a simplistic definition. It is uniquely experienced. For the believer, it encloses his every limb, nerve and cell. Can it be questioned? No! Because it is a purely private and a sacred thought process.
Prayer too is an act of faith, which has God somewhere up as an addressee.
Faith resides in the human heart with multiple emotional indices. For example, we have absolute faith in our parents’ ability to think and ensure the best for us. Then we have faith in our children that they will grow into successful and good human beings. Then we’ve trust and confidence in our own resilience, to triumph over the most testing times of our life. Surely, it is our faith, which begets self-assurance and doesn’t let us waver in the face of unexpected challenges. For a person with genuine faith in his own capacities, nothing is insurmountable.
The spirit of Faith sharpens positive thought processes. It ushers childlike approach to life, which is curious, innocent and receptive. It inspires, motivates and kindles altruistic tendencies. True faith is enemy of dormancy and inertia, and prepares one to push one’s limits for achieving higher ends. Faith heals, keeps us energized with hope to tackle heavy odds. Belief in God or some supreme being instinctively spurs us on to plunge into the arena of happening life fearlessly.
What can be more eloquent sign of faith than the spontaneity manifested in the natural phenomenon? The dichotomy of day, night, and cyclic change of seasons happen according to some invisible spiritual rhythm. Not for a moment, we doubt that summer will not give way to fragrant, colorful, windy autumn or chilly and bare winter will not post an invitation to beauteous resurgence of plant life in spring, together with an atmosphere of gaiety and playfulness.
All religions revolve around faith and trust in God. They proclaim that faith symbolizes compassion and reaching out to others in goodwill and harmony. In Buddhism, “faith implies a resolute and courageous act of will. …..steadfast resolution combined with confidence can achieve whatever it has set its goal on.”
Every morning, when we get up, the freshness, the mild breeze, the chirping of fluttering birds, the sounds of human activities, the salivating aroma of food emanating from neighborhood kitchens, the barking dogs and mewing kittens, are all indicators of pure blessings for those steeped in deep faith. It mutates into a clarion call to seize the moment and surge ahead with renewed goals and dreams.
“You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is like an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.” Mahatma Gandhi
Friends, your comments are welcome!