G is for Gratitude. We owe so much to so many for our existence and sustenance, and for our education and knowledge. From time to time we observe special occasions such as Mothers’ Day, Fathers’ Day, and Valentine’s Day. On these days we express thanks to various people in our lives in various ways. This is a good thing because an ungrateful person is not even fit to be called human. Being grateful grounds us and keeps us humble. It helps us realize that we cannot do without help from others.

We have many debts to pay. Vedic scriptures name three main ones: debt to ancestors, debt to sages, and debt to other creatures. Ancestors are worshipped; saints and sages are respected, and creatures are protected. Our ancestors are venerable to us. They are our elders who have greatly influenced our character and morals even though we may not know anything about them. Sages and ascetics are venerable for the divine knowledge they impart. We are thankful to fellow creatures because they serve us so well.

Above all, we ought to be grateful to God for giving us life and to the Divine Guru for teaching how to live our life.

H is for Honesty. You have undoubtedly heard the phrase, “Honesty is the best policy.” Why is it the best policy? When we are being dishonest we may fool others, but we cannot fool ourselves. The guilt and the shame that are experienced in the aftermath do not allow us to live peacefully. We are psychologically harmed by dishonesty, and this harm comes in the form of anxieties and ulcers. The small lie told to the boss, spouse, or co-worker at first seems inconsequential and harmless, but a pattern of dishonest behavior is soon formed. Gradually, the mind becomes comfortable with lies and deception, leading to more of the same.

Dishonesty becomes such a habit that we find it difficult to be honest with ourselves and with our Creator.

We belong to God. We are His part and parcel; His children. As such, we are instinctively in love with all the traits and virtues of a divine life, and honesty is one of them.

Yours,

Didi Ji