Plato, in his Dialogues, deals with man, mind and realism among other topics such as virtues. According to him, virtues like morality can bring in true happiness. Moreover, wisdom, courage, moderation and justice constitute four cardinal virtues. But compassion can be easily practiced and that brings salvation, the pinnacle of happiness, within reach.
Plato defines virtue as ‘proper active functioning’ and hence he veers to the view that virtue is moral excellence and compassion yields happiness. Divine love comes from God. Then the question arises – whether we respond to the divinity in the same way as we are cared for by our creator? In fact, God is keen to know how much we love Him through our actions – the good deeds we do for the poorest of the poor, actually culminate in serving the Creator.
Wordsworth, the romantic poet, identified God as ‘our original home’ in his Ode On Intimations Of Immortality – But trailing clouds of glory do we come/ From God who is our home.
We often see the demonstration of divine love every day in more than one way even though life is so unpredictable.
M K Gandhi in his search for truth defines God as Truth in his book, The Voice Of Truth. Keats’ famous lines from Ode On A Grecian Urn – Beauty is truth, truth beauty – that is all. Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know echoes the Indian ethos of Satyam, Shivam, Sundaram.
The cosmos is the external manifestation of divine love. Hence, the need for us to love one another just as the creator loved all of us. The universe sustains itself through divine harmony and a melodious song is the reason behind this concord. The moment the rhythm is broken, everyone gets disenchanted. The truth is that the creator preserves the rhythm.
It is interesting to remember that while we, the people of India as a nation, strive for greater national growth and development, a smaller nation like Bhutan called for gross national happiness index. There are many positive ways to be happy and being compassionate is one of them.
All virtues, including truth, morality, chastity, generosity, peace and harmony are certainly sources of happiness for us to follow.
Most people believe that salvation is the ultimate aim of life. So a life well-lived or time well-spent is like ‘insurance’ for freedom from rebirth or the ultimate entry into paradise. Naturally, the question arises, how to attain salvation?
Compassionate deeds make the giver and the taker happy. All good deeds are ideal investments awaiting greater returns, because we will be weighed against our deeds and will be rewarded
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