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This article is linked to 4-01-11 - I was wondering what to put on cuke today for April Fool's day in India Trip Notes. Go there to read DC comments.

Look who’s fooling you
* April 1, 2011
* By Sirshree
Mystic mantra column of the (Chennai) Deccan Chronicle

April 1 is celebrated as All Fools’ Day all over the world. On this day, people try to play pranks on others and laugh at the jokes situations create. But what if the joke is on you? April 1 can be taken to represent the day of the cosmic joke. The biggest cosmic joke is maya... the illusory nature of reality. So, the joke is on humanity and what better day to celebrate this joke than on April 1. Let us first understand what this cosmic joke is all about.

The world is nothing but Self in Action (shakti) brought forth by Self at Rest (Lord Shiva). The very purpose of the creation of the body and mind is for consciousness to experience itself. But, the beauty of creation is such that the mind has also been made self-aware. Hence, the mind forgets its very purpose and becomes externally focused and mired in the world. This is the cosmic joke... the mind assumes itself and the world to be real and wants to control and experience the world. True spirituality is about allowing the mind to drop so that consciousness can experience itself.

However, the joke is so real that the mind forgets its very purpose. If you break a mirror in front of a particular mirror every day, that particular mirror forgets that it too is a mirror and is brittle. It forgets that it shall break too. One can say that the mirror has been April fooled. Because, every night the mind dreams, it assumes itself to be real. The illusion created for expression of consciousness assumes itself to be reality. The mind forgets that it too is a part of a dream and is a mere visualisation of consciousness. The mind (humanity) has been April fooled. This is the biggest joke of all.

A merchant once invited a jeweller to assess the value of his wealth all converted into diamonds. The jeweller informed him that alas all his diamonds were fake. The merchant began to lament his fate. The jeweller proposed a solution, "I know it is a fake. But others don’t. So, why don’t you organise a bumper sale for the world where you offer the diamonds at one-third their value?" The wily merchant jumped at the idea thinking he would at least make something. He organised this sale and every time someone would buy a diamond, the merchant would wring his hands in glee. "Oh look. Another one has been fooled. I am making a fortune even by selling them at one-third their value." What the merchant did not realise is that all along he was the one who was being fooled. The jeweller had lied about the diamonds being fake. All those men who had, one by one, bought out the entire stock from the merchant were all the jeweller’s men buying on behalf of him.

Thus, this April Fools’ day, do not laugh at the expense of others. Instead ponder on how you are being fooled by the cosmic joke. Here are three special ways to celebrate April 1 to make it the most spiritual day of the year:

* Contemplate to celebrate: Celebrate this special day by contemplating on the illusory nature of reality. Contemplate on how maya has fooled you.

* Meditate to celebrate: Celebrate this unique day be meditating and attaining the "no mind" state. When the mind drops, then the Self shines. Then the purpose for creation of the mind is fulfilled since consciousness experiences itself through the body and mind. The mind is no longer being April fooled.

* Investigate to celebrate: Celebrate this novel day by investigating your foolishness. What follies do you have? What false beliefs are hindering your spiritual growth?

One may ask why celebrate? The answer is why not? Celebrate because April 1 signifies creation... when the cosmic joke was put in motion. Celebrate so that you are upbeat and happy.

In Hindi, April is pronounced as "uprail". The world is a journey where the rails of life progress upwards, not downwards. Instead of being downrailed, depressed or dejected by the illusion of this creation, contemplate, meditate and investigate. Then, this April 1, you can laugh with the creator by being the creator.

— Sirshree is the founder of Tej Gyan Foundation and an author


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