Looking for God in People around me

A lot of people write back to me, message me, tell me that I should not use the word ji to suffix their names, after all they are younger than I am or maybe even a similar age. At times I have an answer at times, I just request them to let it be. The word ji as a suffix has different connotations for people, for some it’s a suffix you would put to an old person when address them, for some you would put it to someone who is spiritual, for some you would put it just to show that you are kind to them – and that happens a lot in our world, but the reason I use ji, or most of us at System3 use ji is because of a simple principle, it is to address the god inside you… to give him respect, to make sure we are also addressing him when we address you, and yes it is a company ethos at our end, and I hope you make it a habit too – if you like what I have to say.

When we are young, the concept of god is not very clear to us, we are told by our parents that there is god, some would even go and say we were sent by god, and are messengers of god. As we grow older our concept of who god is, what religion is, what faith is starts to change, and somewhere later in life, we start looking for god, some people leave for the jungle, some people goto temples, some people even leave their lives behind and start meditating in the hills. Baba Bulleh Shah said this in beautiful words

Je Rub Milda Nahateyaan Dhoteyan
Te Milda Dadduan Macchhian Nu
Je Rub Milda Jungal Phiryan
Te Milda Gayaan Vacchhian Nu
Ve Miyann Bullea Rub Unha Nu Milda
Ate Milda Daliyan Sachiyan Achiyan Nu

If god was found by taking numerous baths, and dips in holy rivers, then God would have been found by the Fishes
If god was found by roaming the Jungles, then God would have been found by the animals in there
Re, Bulleh Shah, God is found only by only those with good deeds

Sant Kabir ji put this in a very different context, yet very similar, when he wrote the words

Moko kahan dhoondhe re bande
Main to tere paas mein
Na teerath mein na moorat mein
Na kanth niwas mein
Na mandir mein na masjid main
Na Kabe Kailas mein
Na main jap mein na main tap mein
Na main barat upaas mein
Na main kiriya karam mein rehata
Na hi jog sanyas mein
Na hi pran mein na hi pind mein
Na bramhand aakaash mein
Na main prakrati pravar gufa mein
Sab swason ki saans mein
Khoji hoye turat mil jaoon
Ek pal ki taalas mein
Kehat Kabir suno bhai saadho
Main to hoon vishvas mein

Oh my dear, I heard you are looking for me, but why, I am with you always
I am not in going to temples and visiting holy places where they have different statues
I am not in the Temple, neither am I in the Mosque, I am not in the Prayer, I am not in the Medidation
I am not in the fast, I am not in the deeds, I am not even in the Sanyas
I am not in  the body, I am not in the spirit, I am not inside caves
I live in the breath, and if you look for me there you will find me immediately, after all Hey Kabir, I live in your belief

The words have been sung by many a people, and I think Ustaad Shujaat Khan does a wonderful rendition for you to listen to, the way he has composed them to his magical sitar can have a deep impact. So the next time I address you as ji, and you believe that i should not, remember these words, that there is god in you and me, he emerges only when I have a conversation with you, after all he lives in our beliefs, so let us address him, acknowledge him, pay our respects to him… so that we don’t have to go out in search of him… he abides in us.. he abides in all his creations…

Please note this is my understanding of the words, from various texts and interactions with people, I am sure this is not accurate, and there can be several meanings, several ways of translating this, but this humbly is my prayer for today