Some Key Thoughts


So many people think that to be spiritual means to be able to work wonders, to be able to see strange things, wonderful phenomena; and very few know how simple it is, that to be spiritual means to be natural.

One must study the nature of life, one must understand the psychology of this struggle. In order to understand this struggle one must see that there are three sides to it: struggle with oneself, struggle with others, and struggle with circumstances. One person may be capable of struggling with himself, but that is not sufficient. Another is able to struggle with others, but even that is not sufficient. A third person may answer the demands of circumstance, but this is not enough either; what is needed is that all three should be studied and learnt, and one must be able to manage the struggle in all three directions.

According to the Sufi idea, the condition of life around one depends absolutely on the condition of one’s inner self. So what is needed to change the conditions in outer life, or to tune oneself, is to work with one’s inner self in order to bring about the necessary balance.

Refrain from doing that which hinders you from accomplishing the purpose in your inner and your external life. Do not act against your ideal, for it will never be satisfactory to you; you will not be pleased with yourself and this disharmony in your inner and your external self will prevent peace, which is your life’s craving, without which life becomes unhappy. ‘Right’ is the straight path which the soul is inclined to take in life, but when one walks astray, leaving the straight path in life owing either to negligence or ignorance, or by reason of weakness, or by the attraction of some temptation on the way, one can say that is wrong.

It is when the inner being seeks one thing, and the external being does something else, that there is disharmony in the self. When the higher self desires to go one way, and the lower self another way, then there is disharmony, the result of which is like a volcanic eruption. The two parts of his own being which should unite together in love, clash together and the result is fire. What causes people to commit suicide? What brings illness and depression and despair? Very often the conflict which exists within oneself, and therefore the attitude towards oneself must first be friendly, kindly, and harmonious.

The reasoning of one person is not the same as the reasoning of another; and the reason of one moment is not the reason of the next moment. Something that is right just now may not be right tomorrow because reasoning will change. And they who dispute over reasoning do it in vain, for the reasoning of every person is different, and the reasoning of every person is good for him at that specific time. To urge and force one’s reason on the mind of another is useless. The best way to educate a person is to develop his reasoning instead of urging upon him one’s own reason, which is what many do.

There are two essential duties for the man of wisdom and love; that is to keep the love in our nature ever increasing and expanding and to strengthen the will so that the heart may not be easily broken. Balance is ideal in life; man must be fine and yet strong, man must be loving and yet powerful.

It is always difficult for some mureeds who have once heard from me the necessity of unlearning in the spiritual path. Unlearning is a process by which one rises above what one has learned. It does not mean forgetting what one has learned, it only means rising above what one has learned. What one learns in life is most useful after having attained spiritual realisation, in order to express it. But it can only be a hindrance in progression in the spiritual path if one does not know how to unlearn.

Unlearning is looking at things from an opposite point of view. In other words, seeing things from another angle, as clearly as one is able to see from the angle from which one is used to looking at them. It is this experience that leads one to perfection. The knowledge that keeps man narrow is the knowledge which is not unlearned. But once one has unlearned, one sees from two opposite angles everything in life, and that gives one a great mastery.

The only way to live in the midst of inharmonious influences is to strengthen the will power and endure all things, yet keeping fineness of character and nobility of manner, together with an everlasting heart full of love.

When he cannot put up with conditions around him he may think that he is a superior person, but in reality the conditions are stronger than he. If we are born on earth, if we are destined to walk on the earth, we cannot dream of paradise when we have to stand firm in all the circumstances that the earth presents us with. When a person progresses towards spirituality he must bear in mind that together with his spiritual progress he must strengthen himself against disturbing influences. If not he should know that however much he desires to make progress he will be pulled back against his will by conditions, by circumstances.

There must be a balance, the balance of the head and the heart, the balance of power and wisdom, the balance of activity and repose. It is the balance which enables man to stand the strain of this journey and permits him to go forward, making his path easy. Never imagine for one moment that those who show lack of balance can ever proceed further on the spiritual journey, however greatly in appearance they may seem to be spiritually inclined. It is only the balanced ones who are capable of experiencing the external life as fully as the inner life; to enjoy thought as much as feeling; to rest as well as to act. The centre of life is rhythm, and rhythm causes balance.

Never expect that the events of life are favourable all through. You will have to make a continual struggle and fight with others, whether you like it or not, whether you love them or not. You will find that this fight must be encountered on every side. So you must face it patiently. Do not turn your back to it. Face the conflict with courage and bravery and tranquillity. Since you know that you are on the path of truth you can go on trustfully. Although there is a great responsibility in this worldly life, it is through this responsibility that you are enabled to evolve spiritually. In fact your evolution will become much greater even than that of the saints who have renounced the world. The reason for this is that, when you pursue your life’s journey steadily and with tranquillity through all the struggles and conflicts you have to undergo, success will surely come in time. This success will perhaps enable you in your turn to bring great success to the lives of many other souls too.

The greatest responsibility we have in life is to find out our own path, our own object in life, instead of bothering about others. Suppose a person has a better object in life, if he happens to be our friend, we need not pull him back. If a person has what seems to be a worse object, let him have it, we need not pull him towards us. If it seems to us at the moment a wrong object, never mind, even from a wrong object, perhaps, he has his lesson to learn. We learn in life much by our faults and mistakes. If a person falls, he learns by his fall. If a person has thought of an object wrongly, if the object is followed sincerely, surely in the end he must arrive at the goal towards which the soul directs every individual.




This page was last updated on Monday, March 27, 2017



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