Lushin Dubey, Theatre Actor/Director
Acting is mystical, a big high
By Nandine Kreisberger
French traveller and conumnist

What does spirituality mean to you?
To answer this question, 1 need to go back to my childhood.l was the middle child and had the typical middle child syndrome - a sister with a very strong personality on one side, and a brother with an equally strong spirit on the other. So I was more of a ringside spectator than an active participator. And when you're an observer, you tend to be more of a giver. That is part of my fabric, even though I learned to say no over the years.

Then, five years ago, I embraced the $oka Gakkai Buddhist practice. l came to it out of sheer curiosity, but when I did, I felt I had arrived. Many people think of it as very rigid. And in the beginning, I had a resistance to the routine it entails. But today, it is precisely that discipline which I find very attractive. It is extremely easy to think of oneself as spiritual yet not implement anything concrete, whereas the Soka Gakkai makes it very real. So today, spirituality is first about living outside of myself - I'm not disconnected from the whole; how I think and act definitely impacts it. So, to feel good, I have to do good. And what is good? To create happiness in and around me.

Spirituality is about polishing this mirror within myself: what happens inside and outside are a reflection of each other. And since I am an ordinary human being, with delusions and illusions, I must constantly work on it, consciously and actively. It is like having an eleventh finger constantly tapping. For instance, when picking up a phone call or talking to my cook, I try to be fully aware of my intonation, its impact on the person I'm interacting with etc. Chanting is one of the essential ways of connecting in the Soka Gakkai practice, and I find it elevating and makes you enter a realm of fearlessness and prevents mundane aspects of life from affecting you,

You mentioned living "outside of yourself'. What do you mean by that?
It is about altruism, but not at the cost of neglecting yourself. It is about finding the balance between it all. Being spiritual is actually not an easy thing. It entails a lot of work It is certainly not as simple as going to a temple, reading spiritual texts, or saying you believe in God.

What about the idea of God?
I find that the idea of God can easily alienate you from feeling a part of tile whole creation. We are all energy; all of creation is energy, and knowing how it came to be, if there was a "Creator" behind it all. is not important to me.

What about the idea of destiny, or life being preordained?
I believe some people are luckier than others. I can't say why. But l can't dispassionately think it is all about probability. l really feel there is such a thing as luck, and have often felt I am not such a lucky person. I have to work very hard to get what I get.

How do you deal with major challenges?
I face them head-on. If I set myself to do something, I am determined and committed. I don't like to abandon things I have taken on.

You are a fighter?
Yes, I am. I donít like to give up,

How did theatre come into your life?
I always felt I had it in me. I started at a very young age, then joined Barry John's Theatre Action Group. But I was younger than the others, so I was a bit shy and reticent, and didn't get many lead roles. But I know what I have, and I have full confidence in it. I knew that whatever I do, one day I would go back and make it big in theatre. Because I know exactly what I want - when I start working on a production, I am clear about what it should be in music, costumes, sentiments and so on.

Do you feel, like artists often do, that you're a conduit for something beyond you?
Yes, at times, when drawing, and definitely when acting especially when doing a solo. In those moments, I'm lost in what I do, and completely become that person. It is a very mystical moment, a big high.

How does it feel to return to reality after this high?
It is a high, but with humility, I know I can do it again. I know I can create another reality tomorrow, and usually the high is pretty much there.


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