He is the center
And He is the core
And He is in
The more we are away
More is our suffering
And more is the pain
But even this suffering
And also the pain
Are His gifts only
To bring us
Life is a Tug of War
A 24/7 struggle is always going on in our lives! We are tossed around like a wave in the sea or a straw in the wind! And looks like there is no escape!
All of us are subjected to this tossing around because two opposing forces are continuously at work in our lives — one is Centrifugal and the other Centripetal. One is throwing us out and the other is pulling us in!
One is Maya, the Delusion, Satan, or Worldly Attractions and Temptations: which are pulling us away from God, from Love, which is at the center, the core of our being! Maya is a tenacious foe because for lifetimes we have identified ourselves with the mortal body and mind. So long as we remain engrossed in their ceaseless reactivity to the drama of daily life, our energy and attention are kept hostage to outward circumstances – to the demanding pressures, the constant sensory stimulation, and the peace-disrupting information overload prevalent in this modern world.
The other, His love and His magnetism are pulling us towards Him, towards the center. The further away we are from the center more is our suffering and restlessness. And the nearer we are to the center more is our joy and peace. All of us are His prodigal children and will eventually return to Him, to the center.
Even if you aren’t a believer or are an agnostic; you might be aware of the Big Bang theory, which says – that the universe began approximately 14 billion years ago as an unimaginably small, hot, and dense point (The Singularity) and rapidly expanded. The expansion of the Universe occurred at a very fast rate of speed; which was referred as a huge explosion.
That Singularity can be called God, Spirit, Universal Consciousness, Brahma, Allah or any name we choose to give it!
(When I say God the reader is welcome to think of it with any name comfortable to him!)
It is humanly impossible to imagine the Force and the Power of this Big Bang, and its Intelligence! It is this Force, this Power which created the manifest universe; and it is this unimaginable force that created and sustains the unimaginable Infinitude of Creation! At the same time if it didn’t have supreme intelligence the cosmos would have been extremely chaotic. But it is perfectly balanced, organized and harmonious! One can just look nature with awe, amazement and wonder!
So both these forces are working on us all the time. His love, our innate nature, is pulling us back to Him; and the worldly attractions, the Satan, is pulling us away from the center, away from God.
The negative emotions, feelings and actions, which take us away from the center, are:
- Hate and
And the emotions, feelings and actions; that pull us towards the center are:
- Kindness and
The closer we are to the center, more at peace we shall be; and further away we are from the center, more restless we shall be!
This tug of war is constantly working in our lives! At times we are running towards the center and at times crawling. At times we are inching away from the center or running away. That is the cyclicity of life! That is His play! But the good thing is that His Love is all-powerful and shall always win in the end! In the mean time we keep enacting the karmic play in the Reality Show, in the Cocktail we call Life!
It is the cohesive power of God that keeps the earth together. It is the attraction and pull of His love that we exist. But for His grace we would have disintegrated long back!
Paramahansa Yogananda had said that if we could see God, His love and joy; all will run back to Him! But then the play, the show will lose meaning! Therefore He has veiled Himself with all the worldly attractions and sensuous pleasures. At the same time He has given us the intelligence and reason, and the power to tear away this veil and find our way back home!
God wants that we use our will power, initiative, and soul-inspired discrimination to banish from our consciousness the limiting thoughts, desires, and behaviors that eclipse our innate divinity and bliss.
Even a touch of that God-bliss can spiritualize us and enlarge our awareness of possibilities in whatever circumstances confront us. We can assess daily situations more even-mindedly, and be guided by calm reason and soul intuition rather than impulses of the ego and emotions. We are able to express more understanding and compassion to others, based not just on moral imperatives but on the deeper empathy one feels for one’s own.
Bee and its Love!
There is a popular verse in ‘Sanskrit literature’, which relates a bee’s story. The bee was sitting on a lotus flower, drinking its nectar. As the sun began setting, the petals of the flower began shutting. But the bee was so attached to enjoying the object of its senses that it refused to fly off. It thought, “There is still time for the flower to close. Let me suck some more nectar while I can.”
In the meantime, it became dark and the lotus flower closed, trapping the bee. It thought, “Never mind! Let me remain inside my beloved flower for tonight. Tomorrow morning when its petals open again, I will fly away.”
“A bee has the power to cut through wood. But look at the attachment to the sense objects that the bee which can cut through wood is stuck inside the soft petals of the lotus.” In the meantime, an elephant came, broke the lotus from the stem, and swallowed it. The bee along with the lotus went into the stomach of the elephant. The bee was thinking, “My beloved lotus is going somewhere, and I am happily going along with it.” It died shortly thereafter.
In the same way, we humans too remain engrossed in the gratification of the senses, and do not pay heed to the messages of the saints and sages. We can see old age coming as a sure sign of death, but like the bee, we remain engrossed in enjoying worldly pleasures.
Material desires are like an itching eczema, and the more we indulge in them, the worse they become. How can we be truly happy in this state of material indulgence?
A person who has not learnt to discipline the mind and senses can neither meditate upon God nor experience his divine bliss. Without the higher taste, it becomes impossible to renounce the lower taste, and such a person keeps hankering for material happiness, like the bee finds it impossible to renounce the nectar of the flower.
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