Dear seekers, dear friends, dear brothers and sisters, I wish to give a short talk on the subject of life. This subject is at once most familiar to us and most significant to us. Each individual can claim to be an authority on this subject. So I am grateful to you for having given me the opportunity to speak on this subject and be of service to you this evening.
There can be a philosophical approach to life, there can be a religious approach to life, there can be a spiritual approach to life and finally there can be God's approach to life. I wish to discuss each of these approaches from the spiritual point of view.
Philosophy is of two types. One is the outer philosophy the other is the inner philosophy. The outer philosophy deals with some philosophical books and remains exclusively in the mental world. The inner philosophy deals with light and divinity, and with Heaven and earth. According to Indian tradition, philosophy itself is vision, for the Sanskrit word for philosophy is darshan, which means vision. We envision the inner world that is trying to come forward and manifest itself in our outer life. This inner world is the world of Peace, Light and Bliss. The outer world that we live in is full of conflicts and negativity and destructive forces. So we pray and meditate to bring to the fore the inner world and replace the outer world with it. But from the strict spiritual point of view, it is not a replacement but a transformation. The outer world is not replaced. It is transformed and illumined by the light of the inner world.
Now, let us deal with the religious approach to life. Usually there are two main religious approaches to life. One is the occidental approach: the other is the oriental approach. Eastern religion, especially the religion of the hoary past, tells us that we need only one thing: liberation. Western religion, mainly the Christian religion, teaches us the message of salvation: salvation from sin. In the East, we learn how to liberate ourselves from the finite consciousness and enter into the infinite Consciousness. In the West, we learn how to raise ourselves from the sin reality and enter into Heaven to enjoy our salvation light. Western religion tells us that our body, vital, mind and everything that we have is impure. In order to purify the body, vital and mind, what we need is constant prayer. When we sincerely and soulfully pray, our Heavenly Father listens to our prayer and grants us salvation. In the East, since our goal is to achieve liberation from the limited body, limited vital, limited mind, we have to practise meditation, for liberation we can achieve only through proper meditation.
What is meditation? Meditation is our conscious awareness of something vast and infinite within us. Meditation grants us Peace, Light and Bliss. With this Peace, Light and Bliss, we enter into our body, vital and mind and expand and transform them into vastness. Prayer and meditation are two approaches that lead to the same goal. This goal is called perfection.
In the spiritual approach to life, we have to know that there is a true approach and a false approach. If it is a false approach, then we want to give up life. If it is a real approach, a divine approach, then our spirituality teaches how to accept life and be fulfilled in life. If the approach is not real, we want to leave aside the members of our family we want to discard society and the world itself. We say that the world is full of suffering, that it is all illusion; therefore, we want to leave the world. But the real approach is totally different; in this approach we accept life as such and we love life. We know that the world we live in is far from perfection, but if we give up life, if we shun life, we know that the world will always remain imperfect. Therefore, we feel it is our duty to accept life, love life and transform life.
How do we transform life? We transform life with our inner cry. There is an outer cry and also there is an inner cry. When we cry outwardly, we cry for name and fame and material prosperity. When we cry inwardly, we cry for divine Love, divine Peace and divine Light. When we get Peace, Love and Light from above, we start transforming the world around us.
Finally, I wish to deal with God's Vision approach to our life. There is no difference between God's Vision approach and God's Reality-approach to life. We feel that vision is one thing and reality is something else, that vision is at one place and reality is at another place. I am sitting here and you are facing me. You are the reality and I am the vision. We are not sitting together and we are not inside one another; therefore, you as reality and I as vision are two totally different things.
But this experience is only on the physical plane. On the inner plane, we get a totally different experience. There we see God's Vision and God's Reality together; there we see God's Silence and God's Sound together. For us, God the Creator and God the creation are two different things. But when we pray and meditate, we see that there is no difference between the two: both are part and parcel of God the Infinite, God the Eternal and God the Immortal.
Our physical mind tries to understand what God is on earth and what God is in Heaven. For this reason, we have created two separate existences for the reality and the vision. The mind cannot truly understand or even conceive of two things at the same time. One thought must follow another. We cannot at the same time observe two things with the same kind of concentration: one is bound to get more attention than the other. But when we pray and meditate, not only two things, but countless things we see simultaneously. Also, our focus of concentration will be equally distributed. And what are these countless things we see? They are nothing but God the creation. It is through our prayer and meditation that God the Creator makes us feel that His creation and He Himself are absolutely one. We cry inwardly to go up and be with our Heavenly Father and then He gives us a smile and sends us back to do His work here on earth in His way.
June 22nd, 1976