Editor's Note: Thank you for sharing this with us. It has been chosen as the Best of Forums. Congratulations! for viewership by a larger audience we have it as an article here. ---------------------- Several years ago when a group of friends were discussing religion, one of them hurled a charge at me, “Hi, Accountant, Isn’t your religion money? Isn’t your philosophy, materialism?” Like so many other unjust remarks thrown at me, I could not take this in my stride. I was deeply hurt and did not even have the mind to talk back to that gentleman. As I dozed off to sleep that night, with the cruel remark still hurting my insides, I drew an account (see, I am an accountant always) of my experiences with religion. I love money. I love good cars. I love ogling beautiful women. I love good food, good movies, good books, good friends – the list is long and has never stopped growing. But not more than any other healthy man would do. None of these loves have assumed the proportions of an obsession, let alone a religion. I make money, spend money, have lost it, found it again. This statement would apply to other loves of my life with suitable changes. But my affair with religion belongs to a different category and is much more fascinating than my affairs with money or even with the written word. To start with God took the form of the genie of the famed Alladin’s lamp. Constant petitions to him for this and that was my form of prayer and worship. At one stage I discovered that God as the genie, is not so perfect for he did not answer all my prayers. For instance when I was in my 5<sup>th</sup> grade I badly wanted to marry my classmate, who was our class leader. I prayed fervently to God that I should marry that girl, by hook or crook. While doing my PUC (the equivalent of today’s Plus Two) I feel in love again with another girl. I prayed feverishly that she should become my wife. My prayers were dismissed by God with an indulgent smile. Then when I met these women much later in life, another dimension of God was revealed to me. I just shivered (of course in fear) how my life would have been had I married any of these women! For the first time I started viewing God with some respect. But you know, habits die hard. I still considered God the Alladin’s genie, but with some restraining powers, which he put to use prudently. Then I started praying to him whenever I was in trouble. It is here that I should record a statement of deep love and gratitude to my Maker. I have failed God many, many times in my life. But God has not failed me even once. Once I was travelling to Trichirapalli by bus. The year was 1984. Just four months after my marriage and two months after I set up professional practice in Madurai. I got the ticket and boarded the bus. The bus was cruising along the highway.Not having anything better to do, I was playing with the ticket in the running bus. The ticket flew out of the window. Normally that should not be a problem as the conductor knew that I had bought the ticket. But as my luck would have it, the flying squad got into the bus that day. They were asking for tickets from everyone, and those who did not have were caught and chargesheeted. More than the money and the time lost, the humiliation would have been unbearable. I invoked my dear genie, the Almighty God. “Dear God, you know I bought the ticket. I was of course careless in handling it and lost it. I promise you that in future I will be very careful with the tickets. But please.. please save me now.” Even now my eyes become full as I describe what happened next. The Checking Inspector had come to the back row of seats in which I was sitting. In another few seconds I would have spat my heart out of my mouth. So fast was my heartbeat. The Inspector asked the ticket from the man sitting to my left and then as if in a dream state he then asked the man sitting to my right. Perhaps God saw to it that I was clothed with an Invisible Cloak for a few seconds. The Inspector went on with his mundane job unaware that a great miracle had happened there. I was crying for the rest of my journey. I have been extremely careful with tickets since then. See, He not only saved me but also taught me something valuable.