A forced marriage binds her to a life of mental imprisonment, while a never-ending loan hangs over his head like a noose. A dead-end job dries up her creative juices, while an expensive education yields him little to nothing in his career. She wishes her life could be perfect, while he wishes he could just evaporate into thin air.
Many of us relate to such circumstances, don’t we? Most of us want problem-free lives. When we fail to accomplish this ideal, we’d rather leave the earth for good, and disappear into the blissful white light of nothingness. Let’s face it. Life is hard. After all, it kills us all in the end. Perhaps, a morbid thought like this compelled philosophers to contemplate moksha–that much longed for liberation from our worldly lives and that enlightenment which can elevate our souls.
But do we really want liberation? Do we truly want an end to our worldly lives? I, for one, enjoy the creaturely pleasures life has to offer. I crib about my problems, yet I wouldn’t dream of leaving my loved ones, the comfort of my home, or the security of my job. We don’t want to detach ourselves completely from the world, yet we don’t want to deal with the hardships that are part of living in it. Not unless we’re looking forward to lead our lives as ascetics! But guess what. Enlightenment needn’t be about liberation from worldly life.