It’s All Bollocks Anyroad, Innit?

by Aranyakananda

As I write this, I am “watching” Game 6 of the 2013 World Series online through a program called MLB.com Gameday, s program which I have snarkily referred to as “the equivalent of receiving pitch-by-pitch updates via telegraph.” There are little animated batters, and a box shows you the pitch count, the bases that are currently occupied, who’s up, who’s pitching, etc., and when a ball is hit into play, a message pops up saying “single!” or whatever the case may be. But basically it looks like a primordial video game. And there is no sound. My wife and I got rid of our TV when we moved this summer, so this is the first time I have not actually watched the World Series on television since 1986.

That itself would have been an exercise in detachment had I not decided to follow the Series through this method.

I am telling you this because I find that some Hindus tend to take life too seriously, avoiding entertainments as not only mere trifles but as major hindrances toward liberation from the wheel of rebirth. And I get that. Even I will scoff at someone who “lives and dies by” their home team’s success and failure. Because I know it is wasted energy. But for me, the point of my time here is to not take it so seriously. One can enjoy a “trifle” such as a ballgame and not be engulfed by it. I would even argue that missing a puja in favor of a ballgame could work toward one’s karmic advantage. (As it happens, I have not missed pujas that I otherwise would have attended in favor of any of the games this year. I’m just making a point.) Every small thing, even a ballgame, is an experience you have come here to have.

And I get it. I am familiar with the tenets of Hinduism which lead some to fear and even hate what are commonly considered enjoyable experiences. And it is not just Hinduism. Even Jesus, in the New Testament said that if you do not hate your life, you will not see Eternal Life, or something to that effect. I have always took issue with the translation of the word “hate” in that passage.

But the extent to which such entertainments are “Maya traps” all depends on the eye of the beholder, let’s say. Going back to Game 6, like I said if you live and die by your team’s success, and mope around the day after a loss, then yes it is likely a trap. I preferred the World Series over the weekend when an alternative would have been to listen to a game between my hometown Minnesota Vikings and their ‘cross-the-river rival, the Green Bay Packers. I preferred it because in a World Series between Boston and St. Louis, I have no preference for either contestant. Less attachment, you see? Total enjoyment.

The purpose of life is not just for it to be a struggle for survival which in turn makes you realize your desire to discontinue the cycle of birth decay and death. There is a certain amount of enjoyment that is essential to one’s swadharma. Enjoy your life. Recognize it for what it is. Smile and nod. Take in a ballgame!

Jai Hari Aum.

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This entry was posted in American Hindus, Baseball, Bible, Comparitive Religion, Conservative, current events, dharma, Dharma religions, Dharmic Faiths, Eastern Philosophy, editorial, ego, games, Hindu Scriptures, Hindu Sects, Hinduism, inspiration, Jesus, karma, Liberal, life, Maya, meaning of life, moksha, New Testament, News, opinion, philosophy, pujas, reincarnation, religion, self-realization, social commentary, spirituality, television, transmigration, TV, Western Hinduism, White Hindus, World Series and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to It’s All Bollocks Anyroad, Innit?

  1. Dhrishti says:

    I think I somehow missed this when it was first published. Not sure how… At any rate, I recall from my days as a Jesus Freak that the word used by Jesus is a word the English language doesnt have. He pretty much said you have to “hate” your father, mother, etc… But really he didn’t say that. He apparently used an Aramaic word that would actually be more along the lines of our word “like” – one that sits between love and hate. For linguistic and artistic purposes, translators often just default to “hate” because it makes the point with a bit more strength. This is a prime example of the source of fundamentalism and how horrible it is.

    • treadmarkz says:

      Yes, I knew a former Jesus freak would be able to shed some light. What better way to drive home the meaning of a word like “like” than to say “hate”. Sheesh.

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