Is it possible to practice spirituality in the midst of work and life? This is a frequently asked question among seekers all over the world. The question was answered in the affirmative in the ancient Indian spirituality. Most of the Vedic sages in India are householders with family and children. A Vedic sage declares in a bold language, “I enjoy both heaven and earth like a man who enjoy his two wives.” Later, the well-known Indian scripture, Bhagavat Gita taught that work can be a means for spiritual growth and provides a great discipline for transforming work into a sacrament. But the Vedic sages have become more or less mythical figures to us and scriptural affirmations or disciplines are not enough to provide a living answer to the question. Here comes the importance of role models who are able to achieve this integration of spirituality with life in more recent history and in our modern age.
This issue presents brief biographical sketches of five such role models from varied professional backgrounds. The first one is a weaver; second a trader; third, a police officer; fourth, a social entrepreneur and surgeon; and fifth, a banker. The first three are spiritual teachers, more or less well-known in the place they lived, with many disciples. They are not average men but with a spiritually evolved inner being and high spiritual attainment. But they have achieved their spiritual growth without leaving the world and by living in the world. The other two are not outwardly spiritual or yogis but hardcore professionals who are able to integrate their spiritual life with their professional life.
The main objective of this issue is to indicate that it is not only possible to integrate our spiritual life with the life in the world but also to attain the highest spiritual realisation without leaving our professional and family life.