Here is my journey so far - how I have been hacking spirituality - still not knowing fully what I want or what I am doing.
1995 - I learn TM
Good grades the flyer said. I did not know the word hack that time - but now when I think about it - that was what I tried to do. Hack my way to good grades to earn a BE in EEE - while studying less and having a good time at CEG.
I learnt the techqniue - from a ThermoDynamics prof. But I did not practise after that. Perhaps my grades would have been better. Later - even today - whenever my stress level shoots up - I would get into my TM mode to soothe my nerves. It works pretty well.
2000 to 2006
I would rate this stay in USA as a spiritual void. Was living the materalistic life. Was I happy in this period? When I look back - nope. Perhaps I never fitted in with that world. Perhaps it was because I was made to feel like an alien with a number and a ticking clock - this is how long you can stay here. Perhaps I did not get my dose of spiritual quota filled. The visits to Indian temples were only to feast on Indian cuisine.
I read The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. Then I read every book of Paulo Coelho. This could be my initiation to the Spiritual realm - through fiction. I start getting many questions for which I do not know the answers or do not know whom to ask.
I meet this elderly gentleman when I go to sell our software, and we end up chatting for 2 hours. He introduces me to Conversations with God Parts 1,2 and 3. I read them all and the definition of God in my mind gets redefined.
I read up on Dalai Llama, Tibetan books.
Read Autobiography of a Yogi - and saw the parallels with Conversations with God. We shift to Mumbai. And here every second person is religious. I see a flyer for Sahaj Yoga ( Started by Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi ). Attend a few sessions and learn the techniques. But I remain unsatisfied. I have way too many questions and the teachers there were not interested in them. They wanted to raise my Kundalani. I was not sure if that is what I wanted. I dropped out.
I become a Buddhist in my mind. Give up meat. Lap up on Buddhist philosophy. I like the find for yourself philosophy and not follow me and do as I say philosophy. I read up Big Toe - a Nuclear Scientists Spiritual journey, and Eckart Tole's writings.
I attend Art of Living Part 1. The Pranayamas and Sudarshan Kriya. Liked some of the all round physical and meta physical development. Apart from the yoga, the teachers encouraged to do Service - something that has been making me uncomfortable the last few months - that I am not doing my part for this universe.
So where am I in my path to hacking Spirituality. Still lost like before - not knowing what I am doing or what I want :)
Am I happy? Am I closer to the truth? Do I even know what is the question I should be asking?
This reminded me of a small exchange between a waitress and Dalai Lama when Dalai Lama visited US for the first time.
The waitress asks the Dalai Lama - what is the meaning of life.
Dalai Lama replies - The meaning of life is happiness. However this is not the hard question. This is an easy one to answer. The hard question is - What is happiness. Is it money? fame? big house? - no it is compassion and good heart. This is the real question everyone should ask oneself - what makes true happiness?
Perhaps this is what I am after? - True happiness.
If I find the secret to true happiness - perhaps I would have successfully hacked Spirituality.
Peace and love.