Why we should have a deeper understanding of "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam"

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Photo of Why we should have a deeper understanding of "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam" by Vaisakh Somanath

"Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam" is one phrase which got stuck in my mind since school days. In books, in magazines, on TV, I have read/heard a lot about it. I know what it means too. But I never understood it fully until I started looking at it in a traveller's perspective.

Photo of Why we should have a deeper understanding of "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam" 1/5 by Vaisakh Somanath

We have been reading countless articles about people who sold out everything they had and went for a solo world travel. We are actually getting motivations from every possible end. We get inspired so much that we feel like quitting our job right away and going for the journey of our life. But wait, we have our doubts too. "How long will I travel?", "What will I do after coming back?", "How can I go just like that?", "How about my car, my house, my kids' education?", "Am I investing on something really worthy by selling my major possessions?", etc. etc. This is where we should have a deeper understanding of the Sanskrit phrase written in Upanishad, "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam". The noble concept of taking the world as one family!

We are born in different countries, different states, different localities and thus we develop a feeling of owning that part of the world we are in. We buy land, build houses or even palaces, buy cars, expensive jewellery, furniture, this, that and what more, we feel so proud of owning these that we get "settled" with them. See, the word "settle down" is also designed just like that. It's always "settling down", never "settling up"! Human beings have that general tendency to settle with things (can be any non-living thing) they acquire and then start acquiring more of such things till they die. So for all out there who have that general feeling of not "settling with things" can read on. Others can get back to what they were doing before.

So what are those things which pull us back from what could be the journey of our life or simply life itself? Let's start from the basic things.

1. HOUSE

Photo of Why we should have a deeper understanding of "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam" 2/5 by Vaisakh Somanath

Yes, house is indeed necessary for us to 'dwell', not to 'live'. Our house should be a place where we can spend time with ourselves and with the people around (whoever it is, family or non-family), not a store room where we dump all our expensive (and thus immovable) stuff. Yes, house can be mobile!

2. SCHOOL

Photo of Why we should have a deeper understanding of "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam" 3/5 by Vaisakh Somanath

How many times you've changed your travel plans because of your kids' school? Restrictions like these is why people want to travel maximum before having kids or before getting married. How about homeschooling your kids and taking them with you for your travels (I'm definitely not talking about tour packages!)? Having said that, it's not an easy thing to homeschool your kids since you must know how to unleash the superhero in them. But it's definitely much easier than giving a huge donation to get your kid enrolled in the "best" school of your locality and making him/her part of the rat race.

3. OFFICE/JOB

Photo of Why we should have a deeper understanding of "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam" 4/5 by Vaisakh Somanath

Most of you reading would be able to relate with this. To have a mobile/changeable job is to be a freelancer. To be a freelancer is to develop one or more skills. One important thing to keep in mind is never do your 'job', else do your 'work'! And forget about the word "vacation"!

4. CAR/JEWELLERY/ANY POSSESSION WHICH YOU'RE PROUD OF

Photo of Why we should have a deeper understanding of "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam" 5/5 by Vaisakh Somanath

It's perfectly okay to keep/buy a thing which makes your life easier or say, more liveable. But it's not okay to keep things which add value to your social status or to your retirement plan. I told you about doing work, not job. So you're never gonna retire!

Changing all these things one fine day is not at all possible. The system which we follow is formed by generations of conditioning. We are no one to change it all of a sudden. But we can definitely do our part to question it and to come out of it. However small our step is, it will have a huge impact on the world we live in. Slowly and gradually, we can get rid of all our inhibitions and trust me it will change so many lives!

You know how to make your life stable?

1. Life at rest is a stable state.
2. Life moving at a constant velocity is also a stable state.

Choose No. 2 instead of No. 1. Keep moving around rather than settling down and building an 'empire' of your own. The concept of "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam" will only be realized if you keep on travelling because the whole world is your family. The world is a place where huge cultural exchange takes place. We share. We learn. That's how we live. So make the world your comfort zone so that you never have to get out of it!

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