Epiphanies in life
We all are shaped by moments of epiphany or intuition that speak to us all the time. We only need to learn to listen to these signals that keep speaking to us.
When I was a software professional, I looked forward to receiving my copy of Life Positive every month. It was the only magazine that I could relate to so I started writing for it. One thing led to another and I then became part of the magazine. This is the best decision I have ever made as till today, I have come across more positive and inspiring people than I ever would have done otherwise. Many people discouraged me but I am glad I followed this epiphanic moment.
In another context, my late grandfather had many moments of epiphany especially in the area of classical music. He realised that music is meant to bring people together and hence, worked on combining music and oneness. Till today, his musical compositions are sung by many in the south in events that wish to promote harmony. Some schools in Tamil Nadu have included his compositions in their moral science classes. He left his classical music for he felt that it had not reached the youth of India which he felt was necessary. Many felt he would have been more successful had he continued his singing but he definitely felt he had fulfilled his mission. More than his talent, he wished to reach out to children. That was always his dream as he wished to shape their thought process. He may not be a great success commercially but he has indeed achieved his intent of shaping lives through music so I would say he is indeed a success as his music still lives through the voices of children.
We have heard of many famous people, who were shaped by moments of epiphany. Gandhi became a freedom fighter as he realised how evil apartheid and by extension, the British empire was. Mother Theresa stopped teaching and began an ashram as she realised many in Kolkata were abandoned and she needed to lend a helping hand to them. Abraham Lincoln abolished slavery despite opposition when he understood its evils. None of them did it for personal gains but to reach out to others.
All these people are inspirations as they listened to their inner voice which always speaks to all of us. This voice speaks only to those who are already ready. We too need to learn to listen to this powerful voice. To understand what it could be, we need to see what it can never be
What it is not
A moment of epiphany can never have an evil or greedy intent. Many businessmen say they supported X or Y project because they felt it would be profitable, without bothering if it was a corrupt or illegal enterprise. This is definitely not a moment of epiphany but a misguided notion.
We are shaped by our journey so each step needs to be evaluated for its intent to understand if it is an epiphany or not. As in life, even in epiphany, one’s intent matters more than anything else.
So, yes, epiphany is life forming if one’s intent is pure. We need to then make our intent pure and become open to the voices of god that speaks to us through one or many moments of epiphany.
By Jamuna Rangachari