This eagerness to become a disciple and learn truth is the first necessary qualification. Without it nothing can be done; with it everything will come naturally in automatic response from the Overself.
… Humility is the first step on this path. We should realize how little we really know when confronted by the great mysteries of life…
His task is to discover the presence within himself of a deeper and diviner layer of the mind.
The wise aspirant will not hanker after manifestations of the marvellous. He wants the highest life has to offer, and he knows that nothing could be more marvellous than the realization of God as his own self.
If he is to achieve his purpose, it should be clearly pictured in his mind and strongly supported by his will. It should be desired with all his being, believed in with all his heart.
So much depends on to what depth within himself he is willing to go, on how far he can carry his mind’s search for an awakening to a newer consciousness. It is there, it is there, though he does not see it yet. He must not let go but rather must push himself to the limit until exhausted. The promise is that it will not be in vain.
The aspirant’s decision to aim for the highest Goal is the governing factor: if he sticks to this decision, he is bound to succeed sooner or later. The question now arises: What is this Goal? It is the fulfilment of the Real Purpose of life, as apart from the lower purposes of earning a livelihood, rearing a family, and so forth. The aspirant will become fully Self-conscious–as aware of the divine Overself as he now is of his earthly body. And this achievement will be perpetual, not just a matter of occasional glimpses or fleeting intuitions…
He who puts his mind on the Unlimited instead of on the little parts, who does not deal with fractions but with the all-absorbing Whole, gains some of Its power.
Look for the moment when grace intervenes. Do not, in ignorance, fail to intercept it, letting it pass by unheeded and therefore lost. There is a feeling of mystery in this moment which, if lingered with, turns to sacredness. This is the signal; seek to be alone, let go of everything else, cease other activities, begin not meditation but contemplation, the thought-free state.
It is of immense importance, whether in the internal spiritual life or the external worldly career, to cultivate the art of detecting, recognizing, and accepting opportunity… To miss those chances through ignorance or the blindness of unpreparedness, through logic’s limitation or the dismissing of intuition, is to miss portions of success or happiness that could easily have been ours.
Whoever wishes to develop beyond the spiritual level of the mass of mankind must begin by changing the normal routine of mankind. He must reflect, pray, and meditate daily. He must scrutinize all his activities by the light of philosophy’s values and ethics…
He can find the Overself even if he is caught up in the work of earning a livelihood. But his participation in the world’s activity and pleasure will have to be a limited one. Not other men’s voices but his own inner voice should say how far he should go along with the world.
The iron strength of his purpose will shield him from temptations, the intense force of his loyalty to the truth will carry him through obstacles and barriers. He is astonished to find how easily the man who knows what he wants can conquer his way to it, if his will is able to go straight to its mark.
There is a weapon which we can place in our hands that will render us independent of external patronage and make us master of circumstance’s ebb and flow. This is the power of persistent will.
The faculty of will is immeasurably more important to the progress of the inner life than that of intellect. For the passions and appetites of the body are controlled by will…
To the fearful, uninstructed seeker everything connected with a worldly life is a stop on his upward way. To the philosophically enlightened student, it is actually a step on his upward way. He redeems the earthly environment by thinking rightly about it, turns every earthly deed into a sacrament because he views it under a divine light, and sees a fellow pilgrim in the worst sinner.
It is not possible for a student to know the changes which are going on in his subconscious mind and which will eventually break through into his consciousness at some time. If he feels he is failing in some way through his attachment to material things, the very recognition of this is itself a sign that he has half-progressed out of this condition and is not satisfied to remain inside these attachments. Of course, the struggle to free himself from them is at its worst when he does not have the feeling of the Divine Presence. But when that feeling comes the struggle itself will automatically begin to die down.
Quite often, the aspirant will not be aware how far he has grown in virtue until some crucial test arises in the sphere of everyday living. Then, to his surprise and pleasure, he may note the ease with which he passes it.
Anyone who pursued the Quest with the same zeal with which everyone pursues earthly things, would soon come within sight of its goal.
He who has nurtured the thoughts and cultivated the stillness and behaved by the injunctions which philosophy has offered him will, when the late evening of his life comes, not only never regret it but be glad for it.
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