July 2012

For the man who relies on wealth, of what avail is God’s aid? For the devotee of God, of what use is the worldly wealth? – Chinmaya

Two different attitudes towards life: worldly and godly.

The former says, “No Lord. My will be done!”

The latter says, “You Lord, Thy Will be done!”

While the former follows the path of egoistic self-assertion, the latter takes to the path of total surrender.

Result? The former falters in every step, confused and confounded, hopping from the frying pan to the burning fire, while the latter reaches the goal safely, effortlessly with an abundance of peace all along.

Let us ask ourselves where we belong.

It was the sacred Janmashtami day. A poor woman, whose husband had been paralysed, had promised three little starving children of the neighbourhood a feast. She entered a grocery store and asked for enough items for a sumptuous meal for three children. When the owner asked how much she could afford, she answered, “My husband has been sick for many months. Truly, I have nothing to offer but a little prayer.”

The man, an atheist, said sarcastically, “Write your prayer on a piece of paper and you can have its weight in groceries.”

Without hesitation, the woman took out a folded note from her pocket, handed over to him and said: “Here is my little prayer which I wrote during the night while watching over my ailing husband.”

On the small piece of paper were written these words, “You alone are my refuge, Krishna!” The man read those words, laughed and put the piece of paper on one side of the scales. “Now let us see how much food this is worth”, he said.

To his deep astonishment and dismay, he found that nothing happened when he put a packet of flour on the other side. He was greatly upset when he added other things and still the scales would not move. Finally, he said to the poor woman, “I do not understand what is happening today. But I will be true to my promise. Take from the shop whatever you need, for it appears that your little slip of paper weighs more than all the things my shop holds.”

The woman took only the things she needed for the feast. With tear-touched eyes, she thanked the grocer and silently sang the praise of the Lord who provides for every need of His devotees.

The grocer later discovered that the scales were out of order. “But why at that very time?… And why had the woman written out the prayer before she came to his shop?” Many questions remained unanswered. His heart was converted and he too became a devotee of the Lord.

A devotee knows only one wealth – God. Worldly needs are fulfilled by Him; timely unerring guidance – he gets by listening to Him; peace and security – he gains by abiding in Him; worldly detachment – he gains by attaching himself to Him; total contentment – he experiences by loving Him…

For a devotee, God is The Solution, nay, the Only Solution for all problems.

Martin Luther, the founder of the Protestant Church, had to face many trials and tribulations. One day, his wife, finding her husband in a dark mood of depression, wore black clothes and stood before him.

“Why these black clothes?” asked Martin Luther.

The wife quietly answered, “Don’t you know God is dead?”

“How can you say that?” admonished the Protestant leader. “How can God die?”

The wife answered, “If God is not dead, what reason do you have to be so sad and downcast?”

Martin Luther immediately realized his mistake, put a smile on his face and said, “Yes, to the devil belongs to be sad!”

Let us probe deep within ourselves – Does the mind often become restless? Does it keep worrying about the unborn future? Are there frequent appearances of negative emotions like fear, dejection, discontentment, stress etc.? Does the mind grumble or complain about the happenings around? Has it fallen in the habit of brooding over the past? – These are clear symptoms of a worldly mind.

Let us redefine these painful symptoms as the unrelenting effort of the Self Divine, Who is ever lovingly guiding His erring children blinded by self-forgetfulness wandering aimlessly in the dense forest of matter envelopments.

Divine Love thus nurtured then, like a philosopher’s stone, transforms the base metal into gold, the worldly into godly.

O   M         T   A   T         S   A   T

Posted in: Chintana

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