Exercise builds up physical strength; solving difficult examples develops intellectual capacity; similarly, spiritual strength is enhanced by facing difficult situations boldly, coolly. Spiritual strength is gauged by the degree of diminution of body-consciousness. It is for this that God sends calamities. It is wrong, therefore, to be scared by them. God knows well wherein your welfare lies, and it is not in your interest to request Him to withdraw calamities. It is valorous to endure coolly whatever situations arise. Do take medicine if you are ill. But is it not God who endows the drug with its curing property? And, after all, it cures one patient, fails with another. So remember that whatever God brings about is best for the particular person. Therefore, approach God in genuine submission, and pray for strength to bear the situation with courage, pray to Him to bless you with contentment, and live in His remembrance. If illness comes, bear it cheerfully, for to that extent you are redeeming yourself from what you owe to prarabdha. Do not give much thought to it, then it will affect you less.
You feel indisputably sure of your existence as so-and-so; you should feel equally sure that God exists. When you have the conviction that your guru is the same as God Almighty, then alone you can be said to have true regard for him.
When you think you are serving me, it is only with your body-consciousness; for, you do only what you yourself like to do. To do what I like, to obey me passively, to be in nama-smarana, not to hurt anybody physically or emotionally because God dwells in every being, and to believe that it is He who does everything – this would be true service to me.
My preaching may be ineffective for one of two reasons: one, that I lack the power to bring about the mutation of your mind; and the other, that you do not practise what I tell you. But, after all, a sudden spiritual metamorphosis is not desirable; for instance, if fever suddenly drops from 40° c to 35° c, it may indicate a collapse. So, too, if one who is prone to fits of anger becomes very docile in a day, it is not desirable. The change should be gradual, and be brought about by deliberation.
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