A great majority of people are trapped like intellectual prisoners within the narrow and limited confines of the sensory world in which their minds exist. They are either unwilling or unable to grasp reality and hopelessly addicted to the anthropocentricity of their lives, yet human beings are the only form of life in our part of the universe capable of comprehending such intellectual sophistries.
When anyone seeking enlightenment attempts to ascend towards spiritual reality they begin unaware that all their knowledge and all their intuition cannot take them forward in this endeavour. Neither do they comprehend that what they want to attain – what they believe to be so far from them – is actually present within them, for how could they know anything of the origin until they become conscious of this origin within them? It is only by and through understanding themselves and by learning to really know that they can make the supreme discovery of their true identity. When human beings recognize the omnipresent spirit of God, and when in each living creature they shall perceive some hint of that, and when they can see something of God in all others then daylight will break dispelling the darkness, the falsehood, the ignorance, the errors and suffering that weigh upon all Nature. This is the central thought which should be ever present in our mind as the light of the spirit that illumines all life.
Essentially there must occur two parallel movements in the spiritual evolution of the individual and it is because people generally neglect one or the other of those movements in order to concentrate on one of them that their progress becomes halting and unbalanced. The first is to become conscious of all of the constituent elements of our being, material and sensory as well as intellectual and spiritual. We must become acquainted with the mechanisms of the life within us with all of its tendencies, qualities, faculties and varied activities without any prejudice about what is good or evil, and without any arbitrary judgment about what should subsist and what should disappear, or what should be encouraged and what should be suppressed.
Our vision of what we are must become objective, unbiased, if we want it to be clear. We are faced with an inner universe which we must explore with a dispassionate attitude of perfect mental impersonality – without any a priori judgments. Whatever we may think, this work of observation, analysis and introspection is never completed. In any event, as long as we live on earth in a physical body we should always study the immensely complex being that we are so that no element may elude our knowledge and therefore our control, for we can only master that which we know, and we can only command that which we have mastered.
This brings us to the second movement which should exist concomitant with the first– It is the consecration and dedication and the constantly repeated surrender of all of the elements subject to our control. Each element, each tendency and each faculty must be surrendered to the sovereign guidance of the Eternal spirit with the simple trust of a child. The spirit will utilize all those elements in the right way, for it alone can separate what can be used from what must be eliminated. Perhaps everything is of value and can be utilized, since by the spirit all is transformed and illumined because whatever becomes conscious of the spirit and gives itself to the spirit becomes of the spirit. One of these two movements without the other is incomplete and one-sided, and to consecrate our being in one of them is not enough. All of the elements that we do not know and have not mastered elude this consecration and so follow their own law instead of conforming to the Eternal Law and therefore become the source of much disturbance.
However, in order for us to attempt to become significantly conscious of ourselves in our smallest details will be in vain and sterile if it is not done for the sake of spiritual transformation, in order that the spirit and the soul can be made the ruler of all these elements. It is only by the balanced union of these two movements that it will be possible to begin to truly become transformed from the purely material into a spiritual being.
One must persevere and endure. Those are the two absolutely indispensable things – endurance and a perseverance that nothing can shake – even if you are unwell, even if you are tired, you must be determined to endure. Above all one must remain confident. The big difficulty in Matter is that the material consciousness – the mind in Matter – has been formed under the pressures of difficulties, obstacles, sufferings, and struggles and that has left upon it a residue of pessimism and defeatism which is certainly a serious obstacle. For the results to be lasting and not some temporary effect that comes and then fades, it must really be a spiritual transformation. One must be very patient because we must contend with a consciousness which clings to what is most comfortable, to what has appealed to it as truth, and even if it is quite a shaky truth it clings to that and does not want to change, and that is why to rectify that one must have patience and endurance.
Another thing one can do is reject preconceived ideas. The moral principles of society, their set rules of conduct – what one must do and what one must not do – and its preconceived ideas from the moral point of view, from the point of view of progress and all the social and mental conventions, those are obstacles. There are people who have actually failed to surmount such mental obstacles to spirituality. If one can be truly open as a child with a simplicity that knows that it is ignorant yet ready to receive whatever comes then something can happen as long as they maintain a desire for progress – for knowledge, for transformation. To cling to something one believes, that one knows or to something that one feels, or to something that one loves, or to cling to one’s habits, or one’s needs, or to cling to their world as it is, it is that which prevents progress. We must learn to release all those one after another – release all of the ties that bind. People continue to do the same things repeatedly and even those who are most eloquent and preach to others cling to their own ways of seeing, their ways of feeling – their habits of progress.
To make the spiritual transformation one must always be prepared to change everything except their aspiration for that something of which they are in need – the love, the truth, and the supreme spirit – the spiritual reality. There are some individuals who are making the necessary efforts to prepare for their eventual spiritual transformation and so it is that the effort for spiritual transformation, being reduced to a smaller number of persons, will become much more precious and much more significant for all the rest of humanity for its eventual realization. It is as though a choice has been made that those who are the pioneers, those who are able to prepare for the transformation whose number is necessarily very restricted, must develop more and more in the midst of the ordinary human masses.
Because at the same time, along with those who are working for the transformation and who are ready for it there must also develop an intermediary humanity which has found in itself that harmony with life which brings the same feelings of devotion and faithful consecration to that something which seems to attract it to live under its influence and to have the delight of being under its protection, but which is not their immediate destiny to attain because the amount of transformation needed for them is premature for their life.
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