Ages ago Kashmir was a vast stretch of mountains, fondling the lake of Satisar in its lap. Not humans, but only gods relished the pleasures of this calm and serene land. After draining the Satisar, Kashmir was made suitable for human habitation. But not all humans were allowed to enter this abode of gods. Only the pious among the pure were lucky enough to have the privilege of entering this piece of heaven. So beautiful and peaceful was this land, that one could only try to envisage its beauty and yet wont be able to imagine the land with its true splendor. Historians have tried to portray its image by composing beautiful poems and inditing long writings and yet they feel an explanatory elaboration is required. Pandit Kalhana says:
“The righteous declare this terrestrial globe as the best of the triad.
Of that, too, the mountains (Himalayas) chosen by the Mother of the three worlds
(Parvati) to take her birth in;
Of that, too, the country of Kashmir- the abode of blessings, free from all calamities-
Through this country thou, O Vitasta, flowest,
Benefiting the people, (and)
I offer unto thee, my salutation.”
Kashmir was a land of pious people, ruled by pious rulers. Material gain was least preferred and spiritual maturation was the prime object. This place was considered to be the abode of gods and even the most infinitesimal error in this land was considered to be a great sin. Worldly pleasures or the worldly dreadfulness was the last care. Quoting Kalhana:
“Such is Kashmir, the country which may be conquered by the force of spiritual merit but not by armed forces: where the inhabitants in consequence fear more the next world; where their are hot baths in winter, comfortable landing places on the river banks, where the rivers being free from aquatic animals are without peril; where; realizing that the land created by his father is unable to bear heat, the hot-rayed sun honors it by bearing himself with softness even in summer. Learning, high dwelling houses, saffron, iced water, grapes and the like- what is a common place there, is difficult to secure in paradise”
But something changed. Was it the people or the times but something, somewhere went horribly wrong and all the gifts were snatched from us. The abode of gods was left with no god at all. The gods preferred heavenly abodes as their abode on land was contaminated with human filth. So, this land was left in the safekeeping of humans to be taken care by. But what we ended up making of this heaven ?
Priorities change and so happened in Kashmir. People preferred material possessions over spiritual gains. This ended up so bad, that people were stripped off, of the gift of inner-peace. People focused on outer self and neglected the temple inside. This resulted in stinginess which further resulted in an animosity towards fellow being. Our hearts were deprived of the consciousness of love and care for each other and material prosperity took its place. When the once united land was fragmented from inside, the devils knew its their time to strike. The devil poured its atrocities and no one cared as the care was long lost from the hearts. The devil introduced his cold and diabolic tactics and people were made captive by their carnal desires. The abominable devil finally snatched the throne of gods from the grasps of humans, as very less were their to protect it.
It is obviously very late. It is going to be very difficult to reclaim the holy throne from the clinches of the atrocious devil. But together we can. We just have to come out of the slumber. The method has already been taught a long ago by saints and sages. It consists of purification of heart by throwing the stinginess away so that the light in our hearts could shine unobscured. The heart needs to be cleansed of the soot of detestable vices. When the mirror of heart is well polished, the fire of love will burn away the obscuring veils and the light within will show off bright. It is just the matter of faith and belief. The belief that we can get what rightly belongs to us. The enemy is very strong but we are on the path of truth. It is hard to believe, but that’s the secret of believing. As John Ferraby says:
“If belief were made so easy that none could refrain from believing, mankind would be deprived of the creative power of hard won faith.”
Moin S. Hakak
Hill View Colony
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