Start Here and Now

In order to become one with God, you have to consciously start your spiritual journey.

The Wings of Joy

Here and Now is the soul's motto. If you have not yet started, then your soul wants you to start your spiritual journey at this very moment. If you have doubt with regard to God's existence, no harm. Doubt as much as you want to. Eventually, you will become tired of doubting God. If you doubt the existence of inner peace and bliss, doubt as long as you want to. Even if you have doubts with regard to the inner life or God's reality, it is best to start your inner journey anyway.

If you are curious to know what spirituality is, you can accept spirituality with your utmost curiosity. See if it is just superficially fascinating or if it is something deep and vast, to which you can devote your entire life. You may start with curiosity, but soon your curiosity will turn into real aspiration. If you enter the spiritual life because others have done so, this is also fine. If you see that somebody's life has become peaceful and happy after he has accepted the spiritual life, there is nothing wrong with imitating him.

I wish to tell you a favourite story of the great spiritual Master Sri Ramakrishna. Once a thief entered into a palace at midnight and overheard a conversation between the king and the queen. The king said to the queen, "I wish our youngest daughter to marry a holy man so that she will have some peace. All our other daughters have married kings and generals, but their lives are miserable. The holy men have a very peaceful life, so if she marries one of them, her life will be full of peace. Tomorrow, early in the morning, I shall send my ministers to the banks of the Ganges, where many holy men meditate. I am sure that one of them will agree to marry our daughter."

The thief overheard the conversation and thought: "My God, a poor monk will get the princess? Let me go there and meditate with the monks. Who knows, perhaps I may be selected. Now I have to steal in order to get a little money. But if the princess is satisfied with me, then I will become rich overnight. I will be flooded with material prosperity."

Early the next morning, dressed in the garb of a holy man, the thief went to the Ganges and started meditating with the other monks. Soon the king's ministers arrived and began going from one monk to the next seeking one who would marry the princess. The monks became furious "We are crying for infinite light, infinite truth, infinite joy, and you want to bind us to this world again? We do not want the material life or material possessions!" they shouted. The poor ministers got rebukes and scoldings from all the monks. The monks cared not for the princess; they cared only for the highest Truth and inner wealth.

One by one, the monks gave their refusals. Finally, when the ministers came to the thief, he agreed to accept the king's daughter. They went back to the king and narrated the whole story. On hearing that one monk had shown some interest in the princess, the king was overjoyed. "Tomorrow I shall bring my daughter to the banks of the Ganges where the holy men are praying and meditating," he said.

During the night, a divine thought entered into the mind of the thief. He thought to himself: "I am only pretending to be a holy man. Just by pretending, I am getting the princess and so much wealth and material prosperity. If I really and sincerely become a monk, I am sure that I will get infinite power, infinite light, infinite bliss, infinite peace, as these genuine monks will also eventually get from God. Why should I be attached to this finite material wealth when I have the opportunity to get infinite light, bliss, and power from God's infinite wealth?"

So the thief changed his mind during the night, and when the king approached him the following morning, he showed no respect for the king. He flared up and said, "O King, do not bind me to this material world. I want God and God alone. I do not need your daughter." The poor king went back to his palace, and the thief became a sincere holy man.

This story makes it clear that at any moment we can start our spiritual journey. The thief began with imitation. But he received inspiration when he saw the real holy men crying sincerely for God and God alone. From inspiration he entered into aspiration. He was no longer satisfied with his desire to have money and material wealth, because he felt there was something even more fulfilling to be gained.

If you still cherish doubt or curiosity, then start with doubt, start with curiosity. But start! Step-by-step, you will able to march toward your goal. God is already eager to have you. You you may not be eager to have God, but God the eternal Father, God the eternal Mother, is crying for you. You must make the decision that you want God. If you really want God, then start where you are – here and now. The goal of conscious oneness with God the infinite Light and infinite Truth shall be yours.

Your heart's cry is a real treasure.
Your heart's cry flies like an eagle
To reach the highest goal of your purest soul.

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