Dear seekers, dear friends, dear brothers and sisters, I wish to give a short talk on failure and success from the spiritual point of view.
Failure is a discouraging force. Success is an encouraging force. Failure makes us feel that we have been forced to climb down the life-tree. Success makes us feel that we have climbed up the life-tree and enjoyed the most delicious fruit.
What is failure? It is a tearful cry. What is success? It is a fruitful smile. When we fail, whose failure is it? It is the failure of our unlit vital. When we succeed, whose success is it? It is the success of our satisfied vital.
Why do we fail? Is it because we are unlucky? Is it because we have not worked very hard? Is it because we have not invoked God's Compassion and Blessings? Is it because God has accepted this failure as an experience He wanted to have in our life? Is it because God has granted this failure to us? Is it because God has willed that we should lose? No! No! It is for a different reason that we experience failure. It is for the strengthening of our consciousness that, at times, God grants us defeat.
Why do we succeed? Is it because we are lucky? Is it because we have worked very hard; is it because God's Compassion and Blessings we have invoked? No, it is not because of these things that we achieve success. We succeed because God, out of His infinite Kindness, wants us to win in the battlefield of life. God grants us defeat in order to strengthen us: He grants us success in order to encourage us.
The body of the man of failure says to God, "Father, You do not love me. Therefore, I have failed." The vital of the man of failure says to God, "Father, You do not care for me. Therefore, I have failed." The mind of the man of failure says to God, "Father You are indifferent to me. Therefore, I have failed."
But the Father says to His children, "No, My children, you are wrong."
The body of the man of success says to the Father, "Father, You love me only. Therefore, I have succeeded." The vital of the man of success says to the Father, "Father, You care for me only. Therefore, I have succeeded." The mind of the man of success says to God, "Father, You have most special Compassion for me. You show Your Compassion to me only. Therefore, I have succeeded."
But the Father says to these children of His, "No, My children, you are wrong. It is not because I love you more than others that you get success and they do not. In the inner life there is no such thing as failure and success. There is only an ever-transcending progress. Through repeated defeats, I want you to become a spiritual giant so you can defeat the ignorance-giant that wants to devour the world. Through success, I want you to run faster than the fastest. I want you to defeat the ignorance-animal, the ignorance-donkey. If you reach the goal sooner than ignorance, then you will be able to realise Me, reveal Me and manifest Me. And once I am manifested through you, there will be no suffering, no bondage, no limitation, no death, no darkness.
The Father says to failure, "I want you to be stronger than the strongest. It is you who have to be responsible for My full Manifestation on earth. I want to entrust you with the supreme Duty. Therefore, I am making you strong, divinely and supremely strong.
"Failure and success, I have equal love for both of you. Do not judge Me; only love Me. If you love Me, then you will feel that I am fulfilling Myself in and through you, through both of you in a unique way."
Failure says to the Father, "Father, is there any way I can succeed?"
"Yes, My son, there is a way. If you are more careful, more alert, more conscious at every moment, then success will be yours."
Success says to the Father, "Father, is there any way I can have success all the time?"
"Yes, there is a way. You have to be cheerful and self-giving. If you give yourself cheerfully, then you are bound to achieve success all the time."
Progress says to the Father, "Father, is there any way I can always make progress?"
"Yes, there is a way, My child. You should always aim at ever-transcending Perfection. If your goal is to reach perfection, then at every moment you will always make progress. Perfection is not a stagnant pool but a running river; it is always moving towards the infinite Sea, its Source. Therefore, you should always try to make your goal the ever-transcending Reality. If you do this, you will always be able to make progress and satisfy Me."
When we love God, when we serve God, when we surrender ourselves totally to God, at that time failure cannot make us sad. We do not care for success, we do not even care for progress. Our love, devotion and surrender lifts our consciousness far above the heights of failure and success and progress, and we become surrendered to God's Omnipotent Will. When we become inseparably one with God's Will, we enjoy divine satisfaction in our inner life and in our outer life. This divine satisfaction is what God wants from all of us. He created us so that we could be divinely satisfied; this was the only purpose He had in His Vision. His Vision was transcendental, but He wanted to manifest His transcendental Vision here in the universal Reality. The Real in us wants from us not failure, not success, not even progress, but only God-satisfaction and God-fulfilment in and through us, through our surrender to God's Will.
10 June 1976