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Guest Author Sulekh Jain, Ph.D. – Our journey together is short, we don’t live here; we are just passing thru.

I was inspired to write this article by the following two brief stories or encounters.

Our journey together is short 

A young lady sat in a bus. At the next stop a loud and grumpy old lady came and sat by her. She squeezed into the seat and bumped her with her numerous bags.

The person sitting on the other side of the young lady got upset, asked her why she did not speak up and say something. 

The young lady responded with a smile: “It is not necessary to be rude or argue over something so insignificant, the journey together is so short. I get off at the next stop.”

This response deserves to be written in golden letters:

“It is not necessary to argue over something so insignificant, our journey together is so short”

If each one of us realized that our time here is so short; that to darken it with quarrels, futile arguments, not forgiving others, discontentment and a fault-finding attitude would be a waste of time and energy.

Did someone break your heart?   Be calm, the journey is so short.

Did someone betray, bully, cheat or humiliate you? Be calm, forgive, the journey is so short.

Whatever troubles anyone brings us, let us remember that our journey together is so short.

No one knows the duration of this journey. No one knows when their stop will come. Our journey together is so short.

Let us cherish friends and family. Let us be respectful, kind and forgiving to each other. Let us be filled with gratitude and gladness.

After all, our journey together is so short! (author unknown) 

I don’t live here, am just passing thru.   

A few years ago, I was flying from Las Vegas to Atlanta. When deplaning in Atlanta, I asked the person who was sitting next to me during the flight, if he lives in Atlanta. He replied, “I don’t live here, am just passing thru”.  Then he further said that he was going to Boston. 

For a very long time I kept on reflecting on his answer “I don’t live here, am just passing thru”.

These two comments are so simple yet so profound.  If we just close our eyes and reflect or meditate (daily for a while) on these truths, these will be transformational and will change our habits, behavior and outlook on life. 

We all are travelers and are constantly on travels. Those who believe in re-birth, we all have been doing this constantly ever since, passing from one life form to another. This present life form is just our temporary abode, not permanent. 

Yes, we all are here on this earth for a very short time; some really very short and others a little longer but in the world of time, our stay here is insignificant.

We all have Entrance (birth) and Exit (death). If there is an entrance, then the exit is a MUST; we cannot avoid it, no one ever has.

Dreams of two kinds  

We all experience two types of dreams; one with closed eyes during our sleep and the other with open eyes. Both are dreams in a way and both appear real at those moments. In reality both are short. Most of us get lost in this worldly maya(mirage) or dreams or illusion of our being here.

We think, we are made of steel, are immortal and are here forever. Exit is for others and not for me.  But my fellow brothers and sisters, this is pure illusion. During this short stay in this world, we all create our own music and play our own drums or orchestra. As we exit from here, all that music stops and soon will be completely forgotten. 

2,600 years ago, Lord Mahavira said to his chief disciple Indrabhuti Gautama 

“Human life is like a dew drop on a blade of grass and with wind and sun it disappears any moment, so O Gautama be aware and careful all the time” 

“As the nights depart, the pale leaves of a tree also fall. In the same way the day of man’s life also departs.  O Gautama have no remission even for a moment”.  

Dr. Jeffery Kuan, President, Claremont School of Theology in Claremont, California sent the following beautiful words of wisdom;

“Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people you can, as long as ever you can.” ~  John Wesley

“Only a life lived for others is worth living.” ~ Albert Einstein

“The purpose of human life is to serve, and to show compassion and the will to help others.” ~ Albert Schweitzer

I wish everyone a very healthy, fun filled, joyous and happy 2021. Also let us all repeat this mantra; our journey together is short; we don’t live here; we are just passing thru.

 Sulekh Jain, Ph.D. is the Past Secretary and President of the Federation of Jain Associations in North America (JAINA. He also authored a book “An Ahimsa Crisis: You Decide, which can be accessed as an eBook free of charge at   For further information, please contact Sulekh via email:

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2 Comments to Guest Author Sulekh Jain, Ph.D. – Our journey together is short, we don’t live here; we are just passing thru.

  1. Nirmalya Chatterjee says:

    Dear Sulekh Ji, thank you for reminding us of two very profound notions – ‘our journey is short’ and ‘we are just passing through’. Very well written article!

  2. Sulekh Jain says:

    Thank you so much Nirmalya bhai sahib. Glad you found this article of some value and reflection.
    Sulekh Jain

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