Among all the creatures upon this earth, the human being is the only one who can look within and get to know his real self. I do not think that mastering rocket science, atomic physics or quantum theory is as difficult as mastering the ultimate knowledge—the knowledge of the self. The way of silence is the way of turning within. It is also the way that leads us out of the darkness of ignorance and into the light that is self-knowledge.
We come to the earth as pilgrims, but we have turned wanderers here. Even those of us who are engaged in spiritual quests wander from creed to creed, from one school of thought to another, from one spiritual guide to another. We undertake pilgrimages to places near and far, we seek temples and churches. Not until we turn within, will we find that which we are seeking.
Truth, freedom and the source of all strength is within. How can we begin this process of turning within?
My suggestion is this—everyday, preferably at the same place and time, let us sit and pray, meditate and do our spiritual introspection. I call this session “my daily appointment with God”. After all, He is the In-dweller within us all. He is not far away from us. He is wherever we are. He is here; He is now! All we have to do is close our eyes, shut out the world and call Him and there He is in front of us! In the beginning, we may not see Him; but we may be sure that He sees us. We may not be able to hear His voice straightaway, but He hears us. The tiniest whisper of the human heart, the smallest stirring of the spirit, everything is audible to His ever-attentive ears.
The language of silence
Speak to Him in the language of the soul—the language of silence. As you enter into silence, you will realise this truth, that you are from the kingdom of God and that you are bound on this earthly journey to reach the Kingdom of God. This is your ultimate destination. You will also realise that this kingdom of God is not far away from you; it is actually within you.
Our spiritual journey is an interior journey in consciousness. For many of us, the problem is that our consciousness is imprisoned in the lower chakras. Silence is the process by which we can free our consciousness from the lower chakras and by raising it step by step, gradually arrive at the Kingdom of God within us. We don’t have to ascend the skies to reach heaven; it is right here, within us.
Silence the healer
We live in a world of deafening noises; even as particles of dust cling to our clothes, particles of noise cling to our souls. To clean our clothes, we wash them with soap and water; so to cleanse our souls, we need to take a dip in the waters of silence.
We live in the world of allurements and entanglements. The sharp arrows of desire, craving, animal appetite, of passion and pride, ignorance, hatred and greed wound our souls again and again. Our souls bear the scars of many wounds. They need to be healed and silence is the great healer.
How may we draw closer to God?
People often ask me, how may we know God? All we need to do to draw closer to God is let go of the lower self, the ego with its passion and pride and let God in. For He is our true self, and we are a part of His divine aspect. When the mind is stilled, we find God in everything; and we find everything in God. We need nothing, we desire nothing. All we want is to obey His Will.
The one thing we need to do to achieve this state of proximity to the Divine, is to focus the mind on God, to live in constant awareness of His presence. This awareness will lead us to dedicate our lives to Him. For God is the goal of our life—He is to be realised, not merely discussed, defined, understood or explained. The way to realise Him is through the practise of silence. Significant are the words of the Upanishad: “The mind alone is the cause of man’s bondage; the mind is, also an instrument of man’s liberation.”
Let us practise the simple sadhana of silence to make our own mind the instrument of our Liberation!
This was first published in the June 2014 issue of Complete Wellbeing.
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