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Cause for reflection. What do you think?

Ostad Elahi has often insisted on the importance of the principle of causality in spirituality. This principle can be summed up in a simple phrase: nothing happens without a cause. The first consequence that follows is that it is—in principle—always possible to trace back the cause or causes that lead to a specific effect. As such, the principle of causality is relevant to both the material world and the spiritual worlds. Its role is actually so essential that it seems inseparable from the very idea of a process of perfection: “Creatures were given existence through causality; in order to return to their Origin, they must travel toward perfection.” (Ostad Elahi, Asar ol-Haqq, I, Saying 794). And to perfect ourselves, we have to know the causes. But how can we achieve that in practice? How can we determine which channels of causality are truly relevant in a given situation? Thankfully, we have been endowed with a precious tool for that purpose: reason. This faculty, which is at the root of our ability to judge whether something is true or false, useful or harmful, good or bad, etc., enables us first and foremost to understand cause and effect relationships. Developing our common reason into sound reason, which is capable of grasping the spiritual dimension of things in addition to their material dimension, allows us to use this faculty to elucidate the cause and effect relationships that underlie the process of spiritual perfection. But again, how should we go about that? In order to initiate a reflexion on the subject, we invite you to take a few minutes to answer the following questions.

What do you think?

 

 

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1. In your opinion, what are the principal implications of the principle of causality on how to go about your process of spiritual perfection?

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2. What are the practical consequences of the principle of causality on your approach to God's intervention in your life?

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3. You get into a car accident even though you were driving safely. How do you react?

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4. You get into a car accident even though you were driving safely. What do you think the correct reaction would be?

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5. Did you recently try to look within for the cause of what happens to you?

If you answered “yes”, what did you learn about yourself?

If you answered “no”, try during the next few days to look within for the cause of a current or past inconvenience.

Share you thoughts in the comments section!

6. Watch this video and analyse yourself to see if, in some areas of your life, you might be acting like the believer in this story…
Share you thoughts in the comments section!


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45 comments

  1. NN Oct 30, 2015 4:47 am 1

    Recently, I was in a position where I was able to hire assistants. I did not by any physical means deserve this “promotion” as I did nothing to earn it and saw it as a gift from The Source. I interviewed an individual who had extremely high qualifications and was an all around “rock star.” I decided to not hire her when she told me she had another offer with a different company. Or, so I thought. After much careful analyzation of the scenario, I realized that I did not give her this position because I was afraid she would outshine me and take away my future opportunities.
    Instead of seeing this as a chance to help a student (when The Source has so diligently sent individuals to help me) and also challenging myself to work harder, I took an opportunity away from somebody who honestly deserved it.
    A few weeks later, I applied for a volunteer opportunity for a very insignificant “club” on my campus. I really wanted this position as it was for a cause that I was genuinely interested in. My qualifications were through the roof when I compared them with current members and there was just no way I would not be accepted. I received a rejection letter from them a few days later and directly related it to what I had previously done. I am just so grateful it was for a trivial opportunity, and not a bigger one.
    I am so grateful that I was able to realize not only this weakness within myself but to see its consequence in a later event.

    1. KK Oct 30, 2015 3:15 pm 1.1

      Thank you for sharing this wonderful experience! I think it takes a high degree of spiritual awareness/attentiveness to be able to pinpoint a “cause” in the manner you have done.

      What has helped me become more spiritually attentive/aware is a CONSISTENT (capitalized for emphasis) daily spiritual program, especially during difficult periods of my life in which material concerns were overwhelming me.

    2. Omied Khoshnood Nov 02, 2015 4:09 am 1.2

      This article was quite intriguing I have learned that in life when we neglect things we may take for granted or say “I’ll schedule it for later, we must take each obstacle, doctors appointment, or any other task in life and address it accordingly. Life and God will put you in situations where you will have your free will which is always available to you, to make the decision you choose to make. Life will have more challenges and situations as we age and we should not put off important tasks which can pile up and then cause more pressure in our daily spiritual and materiel lives. God will test us at any moment so be ready to always put forth your honest effort and he will continue to shine for you and be there also.

  2. Zz Oct 30, 2015 11:39 am 2

    NN was very lucky and blessed to know the cause of what happened right away. unfortunately, I am not always so lucky. I have had a few accidents in the past few months, that I would really like to know the cause of. They all had to do with falling and breaking or injuring my knee and my hand. I try to exercise, and therefore take care of myself, as I think I should, as part of my duty. I tried very hard and I am still wondering. I would appreciate any feedback.

    1. AA Nov 01, 2015 12:35 am 2.1

      Have you tried reviewing what changes your injuries have caused in your life or with your interactions with others? I find this very helpful when reviewing the causes of things that happen to me.

    2. kbld Nov 06, 2015 12:45 pm 2.2

      @Zz
      I’ve also been suffering for several years from an accident for which I am not sure of the cause in spite of wondering about it a lot. Perhaps I will know after I die. Now, my problem is more how to deal with it, because physicians do not know what I have. But why do I have that? I know that there is a good reason, that there is a cause, that it is for my own sake. I will know exactly why if one day I have the capacity, it will then shine like an obvious fact. For now, I apparently don’t have the capacity to know, or it is preferable for me not to know, so it is a waste of time thinking about it too much.

      1. Nikki Feb 08, 2016 2:27 pm 2.2.1

        Answer to kbld. It is never a waste of time to think about the causes. As a matter of fact, that is how we get to know ourselves and perfect ourselves. We should delve within and find the causes within ourselves. I have been through many sad or bad family events that would make one cry, but at the end of the day I realized that it had to happen to me, for reasons that came to my heart. Ask God to help you realize it and you will be enlightened. Hardships and challenges are good for spiritual progress. They are like the bitter medicine the doctor prescribes to a patient. It is bitter but it will cure the patient. After a while we see a pleasant change in ourself and we become happier, more compassionate & more tolerant. We improve all around. It is a beautiful feeling.

      2. kbld May 11, 2016 5:12 pm 2.2.2

        @Nikki
        I did not mean to say that we should not think about the causes at all.
        I just think that if I made the effort to think about something, but with no success, it probably means that my sound reason is not developed enough, and then, it would be a waste of time to continue. I believe that the Truth shines like an obvious fact when we are ready for it: it has been my experience anyway.
        I agree with your regarding the positive impact that everything we experience can have on us. But on a spiritual level, causality is so complicated that we may not be able to understand it completely. At some point, we have to have faith in God and remind ourselves that He knows better. Eventually, when we are ready, we will know.
        You say: “We should delve within and find the causes within ourselves. […] Ask God to help you realize it and you will be enlightened.” I don’t think it is sufficient at all. We have to ask God for help, but I personally try to deserve this help through action rather than meditation. There is nothing wrong with asking Him to understand the causes, but personally I’d rather ask Him to help me not to act unethically. I won’t sit and wait to be enlightened; I am convinced that my sound reason, and thus my understanding of causes, will only develop if I do my best to act ethically. If I do so, my understanding will automatically grow.
        So, I am not saying that thinking about causes is, in general, a waste of time. I am saying that, at some point, we should stop thinking about it so hard, and focus more on what to do, in order to eventually understand more, but through action, not meditation. Even though you still have to think before you act to avoid acting blindly; it is a combination.

    3. FS Nov 21, 2015 2:45 pm 2.3

      A few years ago I had such experiences: falling, breaking a leg and hand, etc. The reason I found for myself was that I was very much occupied with my material life and neglecting my spiritual life. This changed when I changed my efforts. This was my observation when I looked within, I can’t say that it necessarily applies to you too.

  3. Friend Oct 30, 2015 1:39 pm 3

    With the principle of causality in mind, I started to find reason(s) for what happens to me. Then after a while, I started to look for the reason(s) for what happens to others! Which made me judge them. I was not aware that I was violating their rights!
    Now I know that it is important to look for the spiritual reasons in everything, but it does not mean that whatever reason I find is correct. Especially when I realize that I am analyzing bad or sad occasions only. Even worse, I do not follow a fair analysis method, and it results in pointing the finger of blame at outsiders! I remind myself that it is important to analyze, but as long as I have not found a reason in the form of a weaknesses in myself, as main reason, the analysis is not valid. Even though the result might not be totally correct, since it is done with the satisfaction of the Source in mind, it won’t cause any harm eventually.

  4. Jan Oct 30, 2015 1:47 pm 4

    I recently had an accident that physically was very painful and has stopped me from being active ever since. Few hours earlier on the day that it happened, I was on the phone talking to a friend defending myself about the unrealistic expectations that few of our mutual friends have from me. As my friend was defending our mutual friends, I got really annoyed that she doesn’t understand my point of view and my feelings. I felt like a victim, and in my defense, I decided to add few more negative comments even though I knew I was being vengeful! As I hung up the phone, a cold and guilty feeling came over me and I felt so bad about all I had said. I knew, in order to win the argument, I had added a lot of negative and strong feelings to the conversation.

    Couple of hours later, I was asked by another friend to go out. As I was feeling so negative, I refused the offer and as she insisted, I thought a change of scenery may help to get rid of this negativity. Two minutes after leaving home, the accident happen and nobody was hurt but me. The minute it happened, I knew why! I was so thankful for seeing at least one of the consequences of my behavior so immediately that half of my tears were for the pain and the other half, for the joy of being so closely watched.

    Now every time I think about those friends, I try to think of all the good things that they have done for me and I try to be genuinely thankful for their kindness. I even called them on the phone and despite the cold shoulder they gave me, I continued the conversation. I knew just because I am remorseful about my feelings and thoughts, people should not suddenly become warm and friendly towards me. I know this is the right thing to do and I know for a fact that someone else is watching over me and this story applies to the principle of causality.

  5. MR Oct 30, 2015 2:14 pm 5

    For question 4, the correct immediate reaction for me, would be to get out of the car and genuinely see if everyone is all right, in health and emotionally. In my path toward perfection, what I feel lacking the most is that ‘genuine’ care for others. That, in a way, is also lack of understanding the process of causality and believing that the Source is the cause of causes for all Its creatures and not only me.

  6. Mat Oct 30, 2015 5:57 pm 6

    I have been having disturbing thoughts against my supervisor for the past couple of months, thinking that I have more qualifications than she does, wondering why I should be working under such a person, and many other negative thoughts against her, which at some point I even vented on my husband or another staff member!! Things weren’t going in the right direction and my work relation with her was going down! Until, two weeks ago, something happened. I was going to get to my car to leave from work. I saw a student (whom I had helped in the past with his term papers) pulling her car out to leave, and she stopped and smiled at me!! Right away I felt rewarded and I took it as a message to me: God has given me this position and opportunity to serve people, and I should accept her as my supervisor, no arguing!! From that day on, I have been coming to work with more passion, with a desire to provide service to the best of my ability. I not only have found peace within myself but positive communication with my supervisor has increased to the point that she consults with me for different projects and takes into account my input!! We get messages in different ways, but we have to keep our ears and eyes open.

  7. Naughty Oct 30, 2015 7:00 pm 7

    To open my spiritual eyes and ears, to be connected to the source so I can hear.

  8. RI Oct 30, 2015 10:21 pm 8

    At this moment in my life I am having some health issues, which are manageable thanks to a very expensive injection paid by my insurance. I don’t have a job (my body can’t handle it) but have some income. I am alone by myself, but have many good friends. For a long time (actually until yesterday) I was feeling low and depressed about it. Lying down on the sofa all the time and thinking God: I am alone with no job; how am supposed to do my duties toward others and fight my imperious self? I was desperate and asking the Source for help constantly, but not honestly. Even thinking why I am still here if there is nothing else for me to do? Yesterday I went to a library, sat and thought: what do I really want? A job and some people around! Then, all of a sudden it occurred to me that I have several unfinished tasks to do. If I finished them they would lead me to great social contacts. Plus, I have many friends around towards whom I can perform my duties. I don’t need to have someone staying at my place to do good deeds! And it was shocking: I am given some money, good friend, things that I love to do without any headache. Why am I complaining?! First, I am given the opportunity of having free time to myself to do my spiritual work. Plus having leisure time. What should I answer if the Source asked me: “we gave you everything you needed without any obligation to try and earn it. WHAT DID YOU DO WITH IT?” And here I am reading this article today!

    1. Ia Oct 31, 2015 10:24 am 8.1

      Dear Ri,
      Thank you so much for your heartfelt and honest post. I just opened the comments section this morning wanting to read some thoughts on the question of causality and the first comment my iPhone opened to was yours.
      I have been struggling with inner and outer outbursts creating conflict and wounding my relationships, often with the pretext of being “honest”. I compare myself to others, or listen to things I hear random people say and I fly off my center (Attention to the Source) and my rocker. And I realize that I have such high expectations and such a high opinion of myself, but all in the wrong way leading to insecurities and grumpiness toward the Source and people.
      Like you, my life is blessed with so so many wonderful gifts. But I don’t see them when I compare myself or when I lose touch with the Source and begin to think it is “others” on whom I depend for my happiness, instead of just being a source of some kind of goodness around me.
      I am still thinking about the question of causality in my actions these last days. I think I brush my bad outbursts off too quickly and think others should forget them as I do. Instead I should own up to them and realize there are consequences. And try hard to hold onto God’s hand or sleeve so I don’t spiral again in two days back into negative reproaches and anger at others (when the rest of the time I am a joyful happy person…)
      So your story somehow triggered me now to decide to shape up and be more aware of the beauty and opportunities and wonders and love from the Divine I get all the time. To be careful, lest He deem me unworthy of all His attentions in the future.
      Thanks RI!

  9. Holly Oct 31, 2015 12:31 am 9

    The video clip was great – it is true – we are given many opportunities in life to improve, change and have a better situation /life .
    I have recently not been very happy with my job – there has been a lot of changes which has meant , longer hours , more work and less job satisfaction. I am aware that I can relatively easily find a better job , I am on a job mailing list , during which I receive plenty of good positions. However, in practice I simply have been very inactive in making a decisive decision – In Practice I have been waiting for an invisible hand to simply provide me with a better position.
    I am certainly going to become more active in making a decision and a change my job – while at the same time inwardly rely on the Beloved .

  10. Shiva Oct 31, 2015 3:44 pm 10

    There were times in my life in the past when I thought having faith and praying were enough to keep me out of troubles and get what I want in life.
    I know better now: that we have to act and also do our best and then leave the results up to Him.

  11. Homayoun Oct 31, 2015 5:42 pm 11

    I have analyzed past and present situations, what took place, what happened to me, and in many cases, I realized that I did not listen to my sound reason. Even though it was telling me what to do, nevertheless, my imperious self took over and I acted against it. Over time, I have learned from my mistakes and I am doing better; but I still fall short from time to time.

    Regarding the story in the video, I can think back to many situations where I recognized God’s message and followed it, but I also remember situations where I did not, and again have learned from them, which is helping me to pay more attention.

  12. Paul Nov 01, 2015 10:19 pm 12

    I have learnt to believe in god’s kindness so hardships are easier to deal with although the discomfort is still felt, I look more to see my role to use causality to improve things. At least I can then have some comfort in knowing I have tried.

  13. Saga Nov 03, 2015 8:30 pm 13

    I have a few friends who recently just disappeared from my life. I have analyzed it very much but my conclusion( and by talking to friends, boyfriend etc. and being as honest as possible) really ends up with thinking that I haven’t really done anything bad and that there must be a higher intervention that has helped taking them out of my life. This is where I’m not sure if I’m analyzing the situation correctly or not. Should I think, since there are several friends who have disappeared therefore I must be the one who have acted incorrectly (principle of causality) or have I done something right to merit God’s intervention to help me surround myself with other people instead. How do I know if my sound reason is working or if I’m just using common reason? This is something I often wonder about, how to distinguish the two and how to know if my compass is acting correctly or not. Comments highly appreciated, thank you!

    1. kbld Nov 06, 2015 12:34 pm 13.1

      @saga
      I had a similar problem: the behaviour of some people made me wonder if I had done something wrong, I thought about it a lot, I asked people whose judgment I could trust, and their answer was no. You end up with a bizarre feeling, and you feel guilty because you think there must be something wrong about you. I think we have to stay cautious, keep looking, but if everybody confirms our analysis, we should stop feeling guilty.
      I would only add that I wouldn’t use a phrase like “God intervened to do that”. Personally, I see it more like God’s wisdom that applies. Not direct, miraculous intervention. We can’t be sure of the reason of all the things that happen, but we can know that there is a wisdom in them.
      It is very hard to know the causes, I agree. I think it is a good thing to keep being cautious and keep asking people whose judgment you trust (I mean, people who will have a spiritual perspective on the situation and tell you things, rather than “being on your side” automatically).
      Keep also in mind that, in our times values are corrupted, so it is OK to behave differently from the visible mass of people and then apparently be more alone, I think.

      1. Saga Nov 07, 2015 11:57 pm 13.1.1

        Thank you so much for your reply. I really appreciate it. Could you explain what you mean that it’s “God’s wisdom”?

      2. kbld Nov 08, 2015 1:11 pm 13.1.2

        @Saga
        You are very welcome!
        First of all, it is only a personal thought. Secondly, I think such direct and quite miraculous intervention can sometimes happen.
        But I think that we should not think that for every single thing that happens in our life, it is something that will have a huge impact on it, like in a superhero movie or something like that. I personally think that God’s providence is here and that if we do the right efforts with the right intention, things will go well, thanks to God, who precisely acts through causality.
        The Divine system uses causality to help you. You can see the positive result, but it is still causality. It is the natural evolution of things to what they should naturally be, and nothing magical or miraculous (in a traditional sense).
        I am not saying that we should not be as grateful as if there were spectacular miracles; because everything in our life involves causality, and it means that God’s wisdom is in every little thing in our life.
        With the help of dictionary.com, we can define providence as “God’s directing of the affairs of humankind with wise benevolence”. I like that last expression.

      3. Saga Nov 11, 2015 9:34 am 13.1.3

        Thank you! The way I see it is that causality is even those things that are not visible to us and can therefore appear as miracles to us. For example, let’s say that I have done something great to someone and right after I will end up in a great situation at my job. These two incidents appear to have no relation (in this world) because there is no visible link, but it is an effect of a cause and therefore based on causality. A caused B even though A and B don’t seem to have any material relation. I think we are saying the same thing 🙂

    2. chat31 Dec 06, 2015 4:39 pm 13.2

      Saga,

      I believe that each situation is different and would require a particular analysis.
      In some cases, it can be indeed that God through His generosity is helping you “sort” your friends out and keep the ones that are beneficial around you. But you have to apply that to the facts – what kind of influence did these people have? Did their friendship bring you any spiritual, material or psychological benefit? If you feel they were a bad influence and did not bring you anything beneficial on these levels, then maybe it was best that you don’t have them too much around you anymore.

      In other cases, it can simply be the chain of causes and effects that have naturally led each of you to take different directions. This has happened to me, and there is nothing about being at fault – that is just the logical consequences of events. For example, when I was in high school, I was friends with a group of people who were older than me but were not going to college – I thought they were very cool, but when I started studying and started meeting people with similar intellectual and professional interests than mine I slowly lost touch with that previous group and we each went separate ways.

      What happened with your friends – did you simply loose touch or did they actively walk away from you and made you understand they did not want to see you anymore?
      If this is due to an argument you had with one of them for example, maybe this is a good opportunity for you to work on forgiveness and be the first person to go back towards that person and try to talk things through – try to see where you have been at fault rather then look at what that person has done wrong.
      If, as it has happened to me, the person just stopped talking to you for no reason, you can try your best of course to understand what is happening (maybe you have hurt their feelings without even realizing) and talk things through; but if despite these efforts the person won’t change her mind, then there is nothing you can do, you cannot feel eternally guilty for their own lack of forgiveness. It can only be a sign for you to be cautious in your other friendships to not do things that you believe might hurt people even if they would not hurt you.

      It might feel like I’m giving a lot of abstract comments, so maybe if you don’t mind giving details (if they are not too personal) then it might help us give you more focused comments.

  14. yocto Nov 05, 2015 6:03 pm 14

    Have you ever been in a situation that you felt paralyzed? You do everything humanly possible, yet you constantly go back to square one. Can’t move backward to fix the cause, and even if you can, you are not even sure what exactly the root causes are, it’s foggy, you see shadows but you are not certain as to what exactly they are. You can’t move forward because a strange force brings you back to the same spot. It is like the force of gravity, so strong, so invisible yet so heavy and sticky, there is no escape from it. Causality feels the same. I have found myself being naive to think that I or anyone including God can change the course… I am giving in by accepting the situation and taking Lexapro!

    1. Saga Nov 06, 2015 7:18 pm 14.1

      Dear Yocto, thank you for sharing your situation and feelings. I believe that when you feel as you do you need to do everything possible to help yourself feel better. So taking pills for mental health is the same as taking pills for physical problems. It’s an obligation to your body to take care of it in every way possible. To rest, to do things that makes you happy etc. But what could also help is to read spiritual texts and to connect with the Source. Best wishes to you and us all.

      1. Saga Nov 06, 2015 8:39 pm 14.1.1

        Also this: “The practice of self-reasoning (self-suggestion) leads to brain changes that can help to alter perception and behavior. For instance, positive verbal suggestions can activate analgesic (pain relieving) brain pathways in certain diseases.”
        – Fotopoulou et al., 2013

    2. adissam Nov 11, 2015 9:52 am 14.2

      If I look back at difficult times in my life, I can see a Wisdom in what happened.
      At that moment it was hard, I couldn’t see what He wanted from me. I asked for His help.

  15. yocto Nov 11, 2015 5:56 pm 15

    Thank you @Saga for your sweet comment. The medication is just a temporary fix to help me cope. in the meantime, I too believe in the power of thoughts and perspective. I too believe that perception is as strong as causality! I do believe that I may not be able to change the course of things but I will be able to change my perception. It will be as if one layer of veil is shifted, as if I am elevated to another dimension, and I will see and feel the situation differently without having to change its course. Everything can remain the same except how I see/feel it… until then.

    1. Saga Nov 12, 2015 6:19 pm 15.1

      Yocto I hope that more of us will be as openhearted as you have been here. @kbld, I just came across this in Spirituality is a Science p.250 under chapter 29, note 1: “Divine energy is a metacausal energy that transcends causality and encompasses all causes and effects.”

      1. Saga Nov 17, 2015 9:03 pm 15.1.1

        Professor B. Elahi states: “There is the One: there has always been only the One; there will never be two. To my knowledge, limited as it is, He always observes the rule of causality. He is very generous, I agree: you might take one step forward, for example, sacrifice a little, and be given a great deal. But that small step, you still have to take it.” (“A Few Fundamental Principles: excerpt 4 of a lecture by B. Elahi, MD”, 2011)

  16. chat31 Nov 15, 2015 3:45 am 16

    Question 1 – What the principle of causality has taught me is to fight the fear of taking initiatives in my spiritual progress. For example, when I have a certain weakness to work on, or I have been given a particular advice that I know I must follow in order to go forward, I often find myself in the position where I “freeze” and say that I don’t know where to start. The principle of causality has helped me understand that I need to go through a trial and error process in order to learn and hopefully progress spiritually.

    Question 2 – The principle of causality made me understand how the efforts have to come from me, and that the result is in His hands. My admission to law school was a perfect example of this: 2 weeks before the application deadline, I learn that I had an opportunity to apply to law school abroad through a special program. An opportunity was therefore opening up for me, but it was then in my hands to put in all the efforts to prepare my application the best way possible, always knowing that the result would be in His hands and it is He who will decide if I should be accepted or not. So after having done all that I could, I knew that if it did not work out it would have been because it was better for me not to be admitted. But had I not done that effort, I couldn’t expect to get help to get admitted.

    Question 5 – I actually had to look within myself today, following an unpleasant event that happened to me yesterday and that involved me being stuck behind my friend’s door because he had fallen asleep and would not hear me ring his bell. What I first have to admit is that it was very hard to delve within my inner guide and analyze the events that had occurred to me with my sound reason instead of the ego. I had to fight the whole day, talk with God to ask for his help to analyze the events properly instead of simply being upset. But my mind was paralyzed for a while. Once I was able to remove the big smoke off my eyes that made it impossible for me to “see”, I realized that God was showing me an important lesson on a weakness I truly needed to work on, which is generally to learn to say no and not be a “crowd pleaser”, which I am with my friends and that can be at the expense of my own dignity. So with this event and the particular chain of causes that led to it, He educated me and gave me an opportunity to know myself better and consequently work on myself.

  17. Alidaftari Nov 16, 2015 1:27 pm 17

    I recently have been in a car accident which completely destroyed my new car and in which I was the victim of the crash. I thought about it a lot, I couldn’t find any reasons. I have just been cheerful that I myself am ok and not injured.

  18. Shahla Nov 19, 2015 4:33 am 18

    My husband and I shared a cell phoned for a long time. I decided to get a new one for myself. We have been using this company for many years. Last Monday (fewer people in the store) we went to get the phone. My husband is disabled so he stayed in the car. They needed him there. The person who was helping me was very slow and, my guess is, very new. From the beginning, he kept leaving to ask some other co-worker who was around and available to help him. I had taken a brand new plastic cover cell phone protection with me. On my last visit I had purchased a phone and cover and they put it on for me, and after two years I still have it in good shape. I asked him to help me with it. He stared to put it on with such a force that it completely ruined the cover. I asked him what he could you do about it for me. He said you can use the one you had before or you can buy one for $….. from us!!!!!

    After 2 1/2 hours of waiting, when I asked for a receipt or documents, he said that the printer was down, so he took a picture instead. When I showed that to my husband (who was still in the car, tired and hungry), he said that it was a wrong account. I went back again and this time another person went on a computer and fixed it and printed the receipt!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I thought about it a lot to see my fault in it. First, I thought about how naive I am and how I cannot stand up for myself. The more I thought about it, the more I saw myself in that mirror. The incident was eye opening for me. I found out that I do not always take responsibility for my actions. I do not say sorry often (I always find others’ faults). I never say, what I really need to say. I do not say “No”. The next day, I received a survey from the telephone company. I told them what happened. My intention was for this incident not to happen to another person. This was the first time I said something negative about some worker. I do not know if I have to feel guilty about that person? I do not know how much this survey is taken into consideration or how much it will affect him. But I know for sure that all these scenarios are God’s signs to show me to work harder and see my ego in any step I take to get closer to Him.

    I would really appreciate your feedback. What would you do, if this happened to you? Is it a good idea to go back to store and talk to their manager, and ask them to pay me for my loss or should I forget about it?

    1. linda Nov 20, 2015 5:11 am 18.1

      I usually end up crying after any contacts with service providers of my phone and internet. This is the most frustrating thing to do. I know people with great perseverance and stamina who also become frustrated so it’s not just us! I think material life is very challenging and not everyone is good at facing these challenges without it affecting them in a negative way. Having said that, my only suggestion to you is to try to always be prepared when you want to make changes like this. Read the reviews of the service provider or store, you will be surprised how many people may have had the same experience, and how much you can learn from them. By the way, putting those darn screen protectors are very very hard I messed up two of them before I decided not to use them. I don’t like those air bubbles (youtube has some videos showing how to get rid of it!), I don’t like that the corners come off. I don’t like anything about them.

    2. Saga Nov 20, 2015 10:58 am 18.2

      @shahla
      Malek Jan Nemati said the following, which might be helpful: “Divine precepts have been presented in the form of generalities, but they also contain particulars that human beings should observe. For instance, we have been instructed not to backbite, not to reproach others, and so on … but there are times when it is actually necessary to reproach others. For example, there is a corrupt charlatan in society that people are blindly following, and we are fully aware of this. Can we remain silent? No.
      Try to develop discernment in your spiritual practice. When our intention is God’s satisfaction and we set aside our passions and biases, we will gradually develop discernment.”

      Leili Anvar, Malak Jan Nemati: “Life is not short but time is limited”, New York, Arpeggio Press, 2012, p. 126

    3. kbld Nov 26, 2015 7:25 pm 18.3

      @Shahla
      1) Your first question is similar to the one which was asked there: http://www.e-ostadelahi.com/eoe-en/an-ethical-dilemma-on-tripadvisor-what-do-you-think/ . I stand to my opinion (comment 72) and I think it is a good thing to participate in those surveys (in your case). Be fair and good, but say things sincerely. It is a duty toward society.
      2) Your second question is more difficult. In my opinion, you should evaluate what the better solution is materially. Spiritually, you have the right to ask for compensation, and in this type of cases, I think it is, as a general rule, a good thing to claim one’s right (for the same reasons than question 1 : mainly, if they pay for it, they will understand that breaking things is not free). Now, there is a material aspect of the rights of other as well. I mean, when I started living on my own, I experienced the carelessness of people (knowing that where I live, labour law is so protecting for employees that it creates an even more careless attitude in everybody: they hardly face their responsibilities). I ended up telling everybody how poorly they acted, getting angry, etc. Finally, when I realized how much people are reckless, I realized that I was just wasting my time, it was a lost battle. Time is very precious, and some things are not worth wasting time on. You have to see if you can achieve something, materially or spiritually, in your actions with others. If in your case the person did not care about ruining things, if you have means to ask for compensation and therefore make them understand that they should be more careful the next time, I think you should use them. But if for example you cannot prove your loss, nobody will believe you, if the manager does not care, if it is too late, then spend your time on something more useful. Of course, if you decide to do something, do it gently, try to help the person “redeem” himself; I am not saying we have to be heartless either. On the contrary, if we can achieve the same thing with kindness, with forbearance, it will be a lot more efficient.
      Disclaimer: it is only my opinion. Every situation is particular, and I have very little information. Do what you think is the best, with a good intention, in the best way you can, you will have your own conclusions. Try to do or not to do, see the results, analyse and draw a (tentative) conclusion (for next time), and share with us!

  19. juliet Dec 06, 2015 4:11 am 19

    I am not like the believer in the video. I always see material signs in situations too. If we pay attention, we will see a lot of these helicopters coming to rescue us.

  20. pzlz Dec 06, 2015 8:05 pm 20

    My approach toward spirituality has definitely been along the line of the believer in the video above. This mentality of “I’ll be fine, God will take care of me, something will happen and I’ll get to where I want to be” has turned me into an idealistic person who for the life of me, I am unable to comprehend that in order to get to where I want to be I need to act like a serious student, and confront spirituality in a pragmatic way.

    I am so comfortable and satisfied with this idealistic mental state that I don’t even feel the need of putting the principles I have learned so well into practice. How can I get to this state where I feel the need that there is something more that needs to be done on a practical level to be able to grasp the truth of each principle beyond the words that describe them…

  21. Jen Mar 19, 2016 7:14 am 21

    Hello,I would like to share my experience. During the past year I have had a sick family member who has been dealing with many heath challenges. This individual has been in and out of the hospital all year. There is emotional and financial pressure. It is very hard to see your loved one suffer and not be able to do much! Throughout the year I have done my best to help and have had faith in God. I have prayed non stop and we are still dealing with health issues. Time and time again I have asked myself why this was happening to us. Neither one of us had done anything to receive this reaction. I have kept my faith in God. After reading this article and contemplating I think I have the answer. I think my problem is that I want to control everything in my life and the life of my loved ones. I believe that this situation is teaching me that I can’t control everything. I must learn to do my best and then allow God to control the situation. I will thank God and let him lead me. I hope I am looking at this right. I would appreciate any input from other readers.

    1. yocto Mar 21, 2016 4:14 pm 21.1

      It’s been a while that I am going through the same issues. Two of my close relatives are going through a very tough time and I also feel powerless, left with nothing but to pray, until one day I told to myself, who do you think saved Joseph from the well and made him a leader thousands of years ago? Who really was with him and saved him when he cried for help? Isn’t He the same One who brought us all on earth? Isn’t He the same One who heard you and came to your rescue years ago when you called Him in despair? He is still around and is the same One, who is present today and hears and knows all about yours and others sorrows and pain. So yes I think you got it right. You should let go and free yourself of all the worries and let Him take control. His plans are far better than ours.

  22. Run Mar 25, 2016 9:59 pm 22

    Can a mother stop worrying about her child or loved one? No. Some level of worrying is ok as it helps us put in the efforts. For example finding the right treatment plan, the right doctor etc. However, worrying too much is not balanced and it creates a kind of cognitive fog. Worrying in excess can also create other negative thoughts like blaming yourself “Why did you not find a better doctor” etc. Because there are so many choices these days and if we make a bad choice we see the reaction and if we make good choices we feel good. But sometimes it is hard to know whether we made mistake or whether it was destiny.

  23. Peter Jan 11, 2017 2:25 am 23

    For me, the video is a reminder of how God is everywhere in our lives. He is practical – and it’s up to us to be organised, to open our eyes and to sort our priorities. If we think too much about money or status, for instance, we’ll miss some of the little things in life – things that being their own happiness and peace of mind without costing a cent. Believing in God is not about letting Him lead our lives; it’s about us leading our lives with diligence and care, calm in the knowledge that He’s right there with us, talking to us and encouraging us, every second of every day.

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