Question: — So what is the authentic spirituality and what do we need to achieve it?
What does it mean to be in the centre of this scheme?
Once a disciple asked his guru:
— Reverend, when will I get my knowledge of God?
— Come with me, — said the guru — and I’ll explain everything.
He led the student to the lake and walked with him into the water, up to his neck. Suddenly the Guru grabbed his disciple by the head and plunged him into the water.
A minute later the Guru let his disciple go. The young man immediately raised his head above the water and began to catch his breath eagerly.
The Guru asked him:
— What did you feel when you were under the water?
— I thought I would die without air, and I really wanted to breathe deeply.
The teacher nodded and said:
— When you start to crave the Lord, just as you wanted to breathe under water, know then, that soon you will see Him.
— The most important thing at this level of soul — is the desire. It is important to have a very, very strong desire to God. It is a main focus for us, and the Universe will arrange all the rest. In Bhagavad-gita it’s said that in this material world all actions performed by the three gunas (energies, qualities) of material nature. It is only a desire that depends on us, which direction do we choose, and then the karma steps in, the influence of material energy and our subconscious programs.
It is only a strong desire which is needed from us. A person can lead an active life or (and) pray, perform all religious rituals, strictly follow the principles, but if he doesn’t have inside himself a very strong desire for Unconditional Love, he doesn’t go to God, but, as it was shown in the diagram, he moves either to the right or to the left. If all this is within the material world, then selfishness is only increasing.
Now, what does authentic spirituality means (the «golden» middle in the centre of the diagram):
The spiritual level comes from the word Spirit — Soul. Soul Qualities:
1. Unconditional Love, we can say that the Soul is Love itself.
5. Presence here and now, being beyond of time and space, — which belong to the categories of the material world.
6. Serving to a Unified Whole.
7. Humility, which is, at first, manifested in a full acceptance of everything and everyone, and due to the vision of God’s Will in everything and everyone.
If we want to advance on the Authentic Spiritual level, we must have a strong desire for the Divine Love, a maximum stay in a present moment, a state of presence and selfless service, caring and state of giving away without waiting for anything in return.
God – is the Absolute Reality, the Absolute state and this state is Unconditional Love. Only when we live in reality — here and now — we can experience a state of Unconditional Love.
The nature of the Spirit is a selfless, genuine altruism. The food for the Soul is a selfless service, unselfish activities for the benefit of all beings. If there is no selfless service in our life, then our faces become more and more wedge-shaped, we become more and more tense and miserable.
Our ego (which is the essence of consumerism) disturbs us to serve selflessly, and so does the restless mind and the waiting for fruits and results of our activities. When the selfless service is present in our life, wherever we are, our life becomes a paradise. For because of this we can Be the Love and this means — to live. Everything else — is an illusion.
If you tell to a person «I love you» — it automatically means: «I am ready to serve you, to sacrifice, to give more than I receive.» (In today’s world, people say these words from their ego and therefore they mean — «I want you», «you delight my senses, my mind,» etc.). And we have to live so that we could say these words to each person, because each of us is a part of God, of the Whole.
A truly spiritual person strives towards being always in the state of a Servant of all living beings. Then our life becomes easy. An even higher position is to be a servant of a servant.
Authentic spirituality — it is also a vision of God everywhere, in everything and at all. The lower the level of consciousness of the person, the more the divide between the material and the spiritual, and the more the sense of separation from other living beings. The man on a high level of consciousness (minimum of selfishness) spiritualizes everything and everyone around.
Another indicator of a person who takes steps on the True Spiritual Path — increases the Genuine humility – it is, above all, the ability to see God in everything, everywhere and in all. This quality raises us up very strongly. Grievances, complaints, etc. appear when we do not see the Master in a person who offends us or praises us. When we see the Will of God in everything, the aggression leaves. Fates of many people get ruined by aggression and claims to their fates. Humility is one of the indicators that you are on the right track. When there is humility, there is no irritation, because, in fact, you see the All-Good God in every person, in every living being, in all circumstances. And then what claims or complaints can there be? On the contrary — there is a gratitude, because everyone is our teacher who helps us to get closer to the divine, to become more harmonious. This world, all the circumstances of our lives, all people, all living creatures have only one purpose — to help us come closer to the Divine, to our natural state of Loving presence. There is no other meaning in this mortal world and its derivatives. Perishable ego, on the contrary, gives us pride and division of all living beings on Friends (those who praise us and provides material benefits), ego considers them come from God, and Enemies (those who cause us physical or mental suffering), ego considers them come from the devil.
In one village there was a Hindu monastery. Every day the monks from the monastery went with cups for charity to collect the food for themselves. One day a monk came by and saw the zemindar (landlord), who was brutally beating a poor man. The holy man, who had a very good heart, began to ask the zemindar to stop doing it. The zemindar, blinded by rage, turned immediately to the monk and poured on him the poison of his anger. He beat him up until the monk fell unconscious to the ground. Another man, seeing in what condition the monk was, went to the monastery and told them what had happened. His brothers monks ran to the place where the holy man was lying. They lifted him up, brought to the monastery and put to bed. But the holy man remained unconscious for long time. Grieving and lamenting his brothers fanned his face with a fan, washed him, brought milk to his mouth and tried to return him to life. Gradually, they brought him back to consciousness. The Holy man opened his eyes and looked at his brother. One of them asked in a loud voice:
— Master, do you recognize the one who gives you milk to drink?
And the saint replied in a weak voice:
— Brother, he whom beat me — also watered me.
When we see God in everything, it is easier to live, not wasting 95-99% of energy for the analysis: why it happened, who is to blame, how to take revenge, and so on. Instead the question arises: «Why do I need that?»