Getting involved in the life of persons/community/society other than me is probably on the decline. The culture of social-networking based communication is compelling people to be spectators in the life or ignore others. They have their own life and I have my own. Let’s not mix between both. As Jesuits and others celebrate the feast of St Ignatius (founder of Jesuits), I thought it is good to reflect on this.
Ignatius was called a pilgrim. The pilgrimage of life involves 3 basic components:
- Pilgrimage into the heart of God
- Pilgrimage into the heart of self
- Pilgrimage into the heart of the World (others and creation)
Thus an entering into heart of God involves two other dimensions too, entering into the heart of self and of the world. So it is not an ignoring-world spirituality, but an invitation to be involved. Surely the great inspiration of Ignatius was Jesus and St Paul. Jesus, though was God, got involved in the human history. His response in the face of sin was not to ignore, but to save by being involved. One of the most beautiful parable of the gospel, the parable of good Samaritan is an invitation to be involved. Even in the Indian tradition, some enlightened persons continue to live for the benefit of others.
Human being is a social person; the culture and the community makes him/her a human. S/he grows to become a human. We have heard the stories of children bought up by animals behaving like animals and not humans. Thus it is essential to have the involvement in the life of others and the world to humanize them and for us to humanized more.
Though we might call the world selfish, we still sees the involvement of many in the life of others. It only includes the great humans like Mother Theresa, Martin Luther, Baba Amte, but also very many simple activists, care-givers, companions, simple people whose names are not written in the annals of history.
We have heard the story of the olden days when the entire village used to be involved in the activities of everybody. Today we don’t get completely involved in the name of respecting the freedom of others and in the name of convenience. We won’t be able to go back to the old scene. But can we trace a middle path?
Such an understanding of involvement will help us to have a better relationship with everything including the poor and the creation. We won’t use the other (persons/creation) as just things to used, but we respect the freedom and the individuality of the other.