The Connection between Inner and After Worlds
Syed Munir Khasru
The afterworld is something which exists in our inner world as something to be thought of “after” we are done with everything else. In reality, we hardly have any time left as things never tend to end in our relentless pursuit of life and the worldly ambitions it entails. On the other hand, the inner world is an intricate maze whose alleys wind and unwind through our conscious and subconscious mental plane much beyond our comprehension. How would we ever find the time and urge to relate our inner thoughts with the after world? Or how would the after world ever find a meaningful place in our inner thoughts when it lives more in faith and beliefs as opposed to being seen or heard?
There is an experience which may resonate a familiar chord with those who have lost their loved ones. Firstly, from a religious perspective, Islam gives opportunity to relate to God by connecting religious faith to worldly deeds in a manner that consequences of our acts become self evident much before we know. Islam brings an element of functionality to faith through detailed lifestyle provided in the Holy Quran. However, with the loss of our loved ones, interface between the inner and after world takes a new dimension in addition to religion.
Three years have passed since I lost my father. As time passages drift me further from the enormity of the event and significance of the loss, I have found peace in a newly found “connection” between my father and me. This connection is rather different as the after world gains more credence in my inner world through interpretation of events from a perspective that did not exist before. For example, in our appreciation of transition between the two worlds, we are pulled by opposing forces of earthly ambitions and need for sober realisations. It is the strength of inner faith that ultimately propels us to come into terms with inevitability of things when we are no longer around.
When my mother tells me that I may have inherited some of the strengths of my father, there is this sublime contentment in knowing that somewhere out there he still continues to live, beyond visibility but within sensibility. If there is something he left undone which never got much attention when he was around, it suddenly gains an importance that previously may have been missing. It is like a shadow trailing your acts until you are done with the job left undone. It is a surreal feeling difficult to explain but I guess easy to relate to by those who have been there like me.
On the spiritual aspect, as life unfolds and our ideals are challenged by hard reality, our inner convictions go through a turbulent period being revisited by the forces which are not unfamiliar but surely unwelcome. From a distant land, a voice within the inner voice echoes the spirit of a rebellious soul that plants seeds of strength in our mission of defiance to the unscrupulous. Our heart is taken on a journey to a world from where our loved ones emit beacons of principles which made their lives worth living and our dreams worth pursuing. The principles of a father finds refuge in the tenacity of a son as the inner and after world find peace in the magical confluence that emanates from an emotional bond that makes time and space seem irrelevant.
Religion wraps the emotional connection with a spiritual thread in such a seamless manner that it weaves its way through faith and reality to make the journey that we all will have to embark upon look all too familiar. Nor is it any strange occurrence that souls departed on pilgrimage to the after world continue to find ways to be visiting our inner world and influencing our outer acts more pervasively than we ever thought of. In this endless interplay of life and death, inner and after world there is one truth that emerges stronger than ever. The truth is embedded in our ultimate destiny with our Creator who both unleashed us through the departed pilgrims and will reunite with the same in that communion of faith that outlives both the inner and after worlds. Only He can connect and disconnect all the worlds that we have come to know of and have faith in. May we all find peace in surrendering to Him.
The author is a Professor, Institute of Business Administration (IBA), University of Dhaka.
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