June – 2008
Faith and total devotion to the Guru are necessary in order to ease the student’s path and level down the slopes en route. – Chinmaya
The path of spirituality is very strange and unique! Scriptures seem to talk of impractical means and impossible goals! Their statements as though contradict all our observations and beliefs. To mention a few of them:
When we say the world is real, the scriptures say that it is unreal! We consider ourselves to be mortals, while the scriptures emphatically declare that we are immortals! In our experience, God doesn’t seem to exist, but according to scriptures, God alone exists! We think we are awake but the scriptures lament that we are only dreaming! For us, success means developing our personality, but success according to scriptures is to destroy it! While we helplessly admit that we are limited in knowledge, strength, size, power etc., scriptures thunder forth to say that we are Omniscient, Omnipotent, All-pervading, All-Blissful, Infinite, Immortal Being!!
And the worst of all, when we request the spiritual masters to prove their statements, they as though ‘conveniently’ escape saying that ‘It’ cannot be proved but can only be subjectively experienced!
Thus, unlike in every other field where the theories can be proved and the results can be shown, the unavailability of these means for confirmation makes spirituality even more mysterious.
Hence when the intellect fails to grasp what the senses cannot perceive, it is but natural that the seekers also reduce in number. Kathopanishad goes on to say “Itis a wonder to see a seeker of Brahmavidya and a greater wonder to see its teacher!”
What can be those noble qualities which inspire one to choose this path despite all worldly temptations? Scriptures say and masters confirm that it is one’s faith – faith in the Supreme, in the scripture and in one’s Guru combined with total devotion that motivates a sincere seeker despite all trials and tribulations en route.
A man wanted to cross a river. A sage gave him an amulet and said, “This will carry you across.” The man, taking it in his hand, began to walk over the water. Before he had gone half the way, he was seized with curiosity and opened the amulet to see what was in it. Therein he found a small piece of paper with the sacred name of Sri Rama written on it. At this, the man said depreciatingly. “Is this the whole secret?”No sooner this scepticism entered his mind than he sank down.
It is the faith that works wonders. Such strong faith is natural for a man of a pure heart. As the saying goes, “Blessed are those with a pure heart for they shall see God.”
It is mentioned in our scriptures that the one who looks upon his Guru as any other human being can never realize God. But for a pure-hearted, one’s Guru is none other than God Himself in human form. It is this faith in Guru that makes the path smoother and the journey faster towards the Supreme, realizing which one comes to know that external Guru is none other than one’s own Self, Who is ever-present in one’s own heart.
O M T A T S A T
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