Dear seekers, dear sisters and brothers, today I shall talk on the secret of joy. There is nobody on earth who does not want joy. There is nobody on earth who does not need joy. But there are only very, very few people who know the secret of joy.
The secret of joy is not to be found in the life of desires; the secret of joy is in the life of aspiration. The life of desire blinds us and binds us. The life of aspiration illumines us and liberates us. The life of desire makes us feel that we are all beggars. The life of aspiration makes us feel that we are all God's divine children. The life of desire is the life of pleasure. A life of pleasure can never be a life of joy, because pleasure is followed by frustration and frustration is followed by destruction. But joy is followed by deeper joy, deeper joy is followed by deepest joy and deepest joy is followed by infinite Joy.
In the spiritual life, we can have joy only when we surrender ourselves to Gods Will. Two thousand years ago the Saviour Christ taught us the supreme message: "Let Thy Will be done." There can be no higher message, no deeper secret, than this. If we want to have infinite Joy, then here is secret. As long as I am in the finite my joy is bound to be finite. I can have unlimited joy only when I enter into the Infinite. How much joy can a drop of water contain? But when this drop enters into the mighty ocean and becomes inseparably one with the mighty ocean, the joy it can contain becomes infinite.
We get joy from self-conquest. To conquer ourselves we have to discipline our life. From a disciplined life we get self-mastery. From self-mastery we get the message of self-discovery. Self-discovery and God-realisation are one and the same. When we realise God, our inner consciousness is flooded with Light and Delight. At that time we have infinite Joy, infinite Peace and infinite Light.
There are various ways to get joy, but the easiest and most effective way is through love. When the mother loves her child, how happy the child is! But the mother remains on earth for seventy or eighty years and then she dies. Her son, who has now become a grown-up man, does not get any more joy from his mother because she is no longer on earth. He has received love, which is joy, from his mother for thirty or forty years. This joy we call the joy of the finite. But when we love God, the Inner Pilot, who is eternal, then our joy will be permanent and eternal. I am not saying here that we should not give importance to a mother's love. We can enter into infinite Joy without throwing aside finite joy.
In our life of joy service is as important as love. If we serve God in mankind, we can become happy. If we serve those who need our help, then we can become happy. Each time we serve, we expand our consciousness, and real joy grows in the expansion of our consciousness. Service means going from one to many, from many to the Infinite. First I eat and serve myself. Then I feed my near and dear ones. And then I try to feed the whole of humanity. As I serve more and more seekers, as I increase my service, I also increase my joy.
Something which is quite important in our spiritual life is freedom. Freedom from what? Freedom from falsehood, darkness and ignorance. Every day God gives us freedom. It is we who have to use this freedom. With our freedom we need not pray to human beings to give us things. We can easily pray only to our Lord Supreme, who is our Liberator. We can love only God, who is our Beloved Supreme. But in order to pray to God, meditate on God and love God, we need inspiration. This inspiration we may get from a flower, from a flame, from the sky, from the mountains, from the sea, from the moon, from the stars, from the sun. Or we can get this inspiration from a God-realised man. We may look at a flower for inspiration or we may look at the flame of a candle, but we have to know that the flower has not realised God, the flame has not realised God. If we meditate on the picture of a Master, we get a kind of inspiration which is much more powerful than the inspiration that we get from a flower or a candle flame. If we meditate on a picture of the Christ, Sri Krishna, the Buddha or other spiritual Masters in whom we have faith, then naturally we shall get infinitely more inspiration than if we meditate on a flower or a candle flame.
Here on earth we are caught by the animal in us, by the human in us and by the Divine in us. When we are caught by the animal in us, we fight vehemently to free ourselves. What are the animals inside us? Doubt, jealousy and aggression. When we are caught by the human in us, it compels us to be satisfied only with a small, insignificant thing. It forces us to remain inside a tiny cave. It tells us that we cannot realise the Infinite. The Divine in us catches us most lovingly. The Supreme holds His divine child most lovingly and tells him that He is dreaming in and through him. He wants His child to grow up and one day become as great as He is.
In our daily practical life there is a way for us to get joy. If we lead a simple life and go to our goal on a direct path, if we walk along a sunlit path, then we can have joy. A simple life is the life of happiness. A direct path is the path of joy. A sunlit path is the path of constant joy.
We do not get joy because the world is full of chaos. Who has created this chaos? You and I. It is we who have to be blamed. When our body only sleeps and snores, we create chaos. When our vital strikes others, we create chaos. When our mind doubts others, we create chaos. But if we use our body to serve God in man, if we use our vital to inspire others, if we use our mind to illumine others, then we are bound to get joy.
We have made many, many promises to God. Every day we promise God that we shall do this for Him, we shall do that for Him, but we never, never do what we promise. God has made only one promise to us and that promise is that He will give us His Joy. His Joy He wants to give us in infinite measure, but when He wants to give it to us, we do not receive it. God is like the sun, an inner sun; He is all Light. If we keep our windows and doors shut, then the sunlight cannot come in. Similarly, if we keep our heart's door shut, then God's Joy cannot come in. But if we keep our heart's door open, then we get light and illumination from God the inner Sun.
We have three special rooms: the room of the soul, the room of the heart and the room of the mind. There are two more rooms: the room of the vital and the room of the body, but most of the time we keep the doors to these two rooms closed. When we live in the soul's room, we see that there is nowhere for death to stay. When there is nowhere for death, naturally we will be extremely happy. When we live in the heart-room, we see that at times there is a seat for death. Naturally, we cannot be as happy as when we are in the soul's room. This moment, when our heart identifies with Light divine, naturally there can be no death; but the next moment, when our heart identifies with the ignorance of the world, at that time all is depression, frustration, destruction and death. In the room of the mind, not only is there a seat for death, but death is welcome to sit on any seat he wants to. Death comes in and sits either on its own seat or on any other seat it wants to occupy. So there can be no joy at all in the room of the mind. If we are in the mind-room, we have to pray to enter into the heart-room. If we are in the heart-room, let us pray and meditate to enter into the soul's room. It is only in the soul's room that we will find infinite Joy, infinite Satisfaction and infinite Perfection.
University of Uppsala
July 10, 1974