Do We Need a Minister of Loneliness?
In January 2018, the United Kingdom’s Prime Minister appointed a "minister of loneliness" to tackle the social and health issues caused by social isolation. “For far too many people, loneliness is the sad reality of modern life,” the Prime Minister said.
What does it say about the modern world that a government felt it needed to address loneliness in the population by adding a new arm of the government? What legislation will they enact to help overcome people’s loneliness?
What has happened to the family structure and our ability to support each other if we now need government to help us overcome our loneliness? What is the root cause of loneliness? The masters have taught us that loneliness goes deeper than being without someone to chat with or to go out to lunch with. That conscious or even unconscious feeling of loneliness, which we all feel if we look deep within ourselves, stems from our separation from the divine.
All of us are alone, we arrive in the world alone and we leave alone. Once we were an undifferentiated part of the divine ocean of love. We now perceive ourselves as only an individual drop removed from that divine ocean of love. However this could not be farther from the truth. Our connection with the divine is buried under the weight of our desires, actions, and sense of self. We cannot see beyond ourselves.
Our whole being is permeated with shabd. Divine love, peace, and contentment are at our very centre. But when we look in the mirror we see an individual and automatically feel that we are separate, with our own individual needs and wants. Thus, by identifying with our body and mind, we strengthen our feelings of loneliness and disappointment. We don’t see God in the mirror, we only see ourselves.
For our own mental and spiritual health we need to change our perspective. We need to see past the obvious and focus on our potential. Focus on what we know is true and real and achievable. We need to strengthen our confidence, confidence in ourselves and in Baba Ji. We need to remind ourselves of the tremendous strength available to us if we only look inside and tap into that unlimited power of the shabd, the real form of the master. The true guru in his shabd form is inside us, waiting for us to meet him.
Our master will do anything and everything he can to move us towards this direction. But we need to work with him. First, we need to resolve to change. Secondly, make simran and bhajan a priority; not occasionally but routinely, every day. Baba Ji has made it clear that he will not change our destiny, but he will help us overcome any obstacles we may encounter, including those erected by our mind. If we do his work he will help us with ours. Soami Ji said:
I shall myself help you put in the effort,
I shall myself take you to your ultimate home.
Listen to what Radha Soami has to say:
All will be worked out…1
It is no surprise that so many people feel lonely. This world isn’t our true home nor is there any real and lasting comfort that comes from it. If we feel unloved and lonely at times it only points to the reality of this world and our need for true love – true love so fulfilling that is only possible if we develop an inner relationship with shabd master.
Nothing else is important in our life. The master is our lifeboat in this raging storm of the world. He is our lighthouse, the bright light pointing the way to safety in the dark sea of separation and loneliness. The master in his shabd form is unceasing, always there to help and provide strength and support. The master always has our best interest at heart. You can rest your head on his shoulder and expel all feelings of fear and loneliness.
- Soami Ji, Sar Bachan (Poetry), Bachan 33, Shabd 16; p. 331