Manatita is an esteemed author living in London, UK. He writes spiritual books, flash fiction and esoteric poetry, his favourite genre.
"My love of God has no need of heaven's bliss.
For my love of God itself is the highest bliss" - Sri Chinmoy.
"See the inner life first, and the outer life will follow. Water the roots of the tree and you will get green leaves, flowers, branches and fruits." -Manatita
The harvest of good actions
The second quote above is - from my standpoint - a sincere reflection of the spiritual life. We spend so much time in looking outside of ourselves (me included), that we forget that we are spiritual beings … that we are made in the image of Spirit and that our true Home resides in Paradise, in Bliss.
So we see some countries as terrible places to live and find everything wrong with them, including the invention of a few new diseases; we criticise our own countries or individuals and even our neighbours and children.
'He did this to me. She did this to me. They are terrible people!" That is how some soul's live. Always complaining. We complain because we are not sufficiently grounded in Love. We are suspicious and we disbelieve. Why?
" ...It is easier to disbelieve than to believe because disbelief is an act of descent, whereas belief is an act of ascent. Descending is easier than ascending.
It is easier to disbelieve than to believe because disbelief is an act of breaking, and belief is an act of building. Building is more difficult than breaking.
It is easier to disbelieve than to believe because disbelief is an act of our self-centred mind, whereas belief is an act of our self-giving heart." -Sri Chinmoy
Now I wish to be gentle. I have difficulties and the Path is not straight-forward for me, but I'm trying. I also wish to Love you too, whoever you are. It is the nature of Grace to push the devotee in the line of service and I'm trying to do this with a loving Heart.
All God asks is for us to take one step towards Him, a step of faith … of Love and He will do the rest. But this cannot be done without looking at the core fundamentals of Faith: serving selflessly, empathy if not compassion, loving kindness if not Love, thankfulness if not gratitude and so forth. Some aids are necessary:
1. Prayer - an entreaty, both verbal and non-verbal or an attempt to lay hold of God Itself … to build a relationship as the mother strives to do with the child; as the bird with its nest and egg; the rose with its thorns.
2. Concentration or focus - the offering of all our attention to a particular point, to the exclusion of everything thing else. This can be done by looking at a candle flame with disciplined and regular practice; a picture of one we love such as the Christ or Buddha; visualisation exercises; mantras such as the Hail Mary or Jesus Prayer. Affirmations or whatever else gives the individual joy. Souls are all different.
3. Meditation - that ability to calm the mind from its mundane and riotous living, so that one can anchor in the divine forces raining from above and within. The intensity of concentration is preparatory to this, as is breathing, devotional singing, chanting and the stillness of life or nature.
4. Contemplation - this has a few levels, but it is the highest stage of communion with God. For all four, the fifth is necessary.
5. Purity - the lily of all Christian virtues. Do not be fooled into thinking that we will achieve this over night. Purity is the inner vessel that holds the Light … the extent to which our own mirrors are clean ...how we see and envisage the world. Naturally, the things that come out of us will affect us more:
Resentments, fear, insecurity, jealousy … the five major obstacles from which all the others spring: Anger, hatred or wrath; Greed; Lust or passion (Lack of self-control); Attachment (A clinging on to the things that are ephemeral) Ego, vanity or pride.They create separation, boxes, superior and inferior, division and so forth.
Yesterday I went to an Interfaith gathering at a Buddhist Centre. Interfaith gatherings are useful for many. They speak a similar language of mutual tolerance, respect and cooperation, unity in diversity and above all, dialogue as a medium for healing.
Anyway, there were five main speakers: Jain, Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist and probably Bahai. Not sure about the fifth. They spoke and then answered questions. All seemed to be going very well indeed until the last question. Perhaps Bill will agree with me that there is always at least one critic or sceptic in the audience.
This guy wanted to know how the indigenous religions ( From India) could get together, to fight the fundamental bigotry and prosyletising of Christianity and the radicalisation of Islam. (Close enough to his words). Well, this time all the eloquent speakers paused, each seemingly afraid to take the question. Indeed they asked for the question to be repeated at least three times!
The questioner was sitting next to me, getting upset because he felt that they had not answered his question well, except only two whom he felt had tried.
This brings me back to the theme of the Hub, the core values of Yoga Philosophy. I could literally hear any God-lover answering this question … pointing the questioner at Love, compassion, prayer … of going inward to find the answer. Of removing the moth in his own eyes before that of others.
You see, it is by bettering ourselves, that we can actually serve human beings. It has never been the other way around and when the Saviour comes, He/She teaches us to transform our nature; to be the change we wish to see.
Guruji used to say that if one wishes to swim, then naturally one has to get into the water. What happens is that while the God-lovers swims in the ocean of nectar, the critic prefers to stay on the bank or poolside and say that the water is too cold … to give another ten excuses as to why he should not get in. How will he then swim?
The swimming instructions to the river of life are like I stated: Pray, serve, be noble and kind, see the larger picture. Walk with the fundamentals of spiritual living. Here's a deep question: If a leader figure is doing something we don't like, can it reflect the larger society? After all, he or she came from us. How can we help? is there anything positive that we can do apart from criticism?
God is not only in everything, but is also Everything! He carries our pains and our experiences... he grants us Grace and takes it away. He exercises Justice, which is in itself, yet another aspect of His Love.
God loves us so much, that He keeps sending messengers to remind us of our Divinity, a role which the Supreme has been playing, from the beginning of Time. It is truly a birthless and deathless journey of Consciousness, of Love, Light, Joy, Existence and Bliss-Delight. I trust it finds me worthy. Glory be!!
A good Shepherd
I gravitate to the fourth plate of pancakes,
Like the mouse does to the burnt coconut trap.
My discernment is not lacking; so I know
The consequences, of excess sugary pleasures.
Calling! Calling! The strong pull of desires,
Entices my imperfections, binding me
To my cravings, like a camel and thorns.
I add syrup to this deadly piece of breakfast;
Give thanks to the contentment of my stomach.
Alas! Everything has a price.
The dark desire of temptations,
Serve only to fan the flame of my shadows.
I bleed heavily once again,
Relying on the mercy of Love to heal my wounds.
Manatita, The Lantern Carrier. 6th July, 2018.
~ Awakening The Inner Light ~
Quote from Sri Chinmoy
" ...A man of disbelief, with his eyes firmly closed, tells us what others are, what the world is and what he himself can do for the entire world if he wants to. A man of belief, with his heart's door wide open, tells us what God has done for him, what God is doing for him and what God will do for him...." -Sri Chinmoy
Quote from Sri Chinmoy
" ...Disbelief begins its journey in the doubting mind and ends in the destructive vital. Belief begins its journey in the illumining soul and continues to march in the vast kingdom of the aspiring heart ...." -Sri Chinmoy
" ...Why do we disbelieve? We disbelieve because we are afraid of oneness, afraid of the vast. We feel that when we enter into the vast, we lose our identity, we lose our individuality, we lose our very existence..." -Sri Chinmoy
An Inner journey
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