Love, devotion and surrenderColumbia University; New York, New York, USA
St. Paul’s Chapel
2 May 1973
Love, devotion and surrender. Love, devotion and surrender is our path. Love, devotion and surrender is our Goal.
Love. Love is the only wealth that man absolutely needs. Love is the only wealth that God precisely is.
Animal love can be conquered and purified. Human love can be perfected and transcended. Divine Love can be achieved and manifested.
To love God is to be a normal human being. To love God is to be a practical human being. To love God is to be a successful human being. To love God is to be a fulfilling and fulfilled human being.
Without love man is insecure. Without love man is uncertain. Without love man is incapable. Human insecurity is a chronic disease. Human uncertainty is an almost incurable disease. Human incapacity is a fatal disease. God uses His Compassion-Power to transform our insecurity into His divine Security. God uses His Wisdom-Power to transform our uncertainty into His divine Certainty. God uses His Concern-Power to transform our human incapacity into His divine Capacity.
He who loves never grows old. God is a perfect example.
He who loves never becomes poor. God is a shining example.
He who loves never becomes unhappy. God is a blissful example.
Devotion. Devotion is our inner sweetness. Devotion is our divine intensity. Devotion is our supreme dynamism. God loves our snow-white sweetness. God appreciates our divine intensity. God admires our supreme dynamism.
A heart of devotion is purer than the purest flame. A heart of devotion is faster than the fastest deer. A heart of devotion is wiser than the wisest sage.
Purity’s soulful permanence lives in devotion. Speed’s truthful assurance lives in devotion. Wisdom’s fruitful illumination lives in devotion.
Surrender. Surrender is our ever-increasing consciousness. Surrender is our ever-illumining vastness. Surrender is our ever-fulfilling oneness.
Consciousness is another name for the golden link between Heaven’s descent and earth’s ascent. Vastness is another name for God’s Heart, which can be used by humanity. Oneness is another name for the evolving God in aspiring man.
Love, devotion and surrender: this is our path. All paths ultimately lead to the same Destination, but we feel that the path of love, devotion and surrender is the safest and the quickest. This is our personal feeling. If others find it difficult to see eye to eye with us, they have every right to follow a different path. We will never say that ours is the only path and that only we will be able to offer salvation and illumination. No. Our path is for those who feel that the heart can lead them faster to their Destination than the mind. Our path is for those who feel that the light of the soul has to come to the fore through the heart and that from the heart the light will be received by the mind, the vital and the physical.
In our path love is the first rung of the ladder, devotion is the second rung and surrender is the third and ultimate rung. We love God because we feel that, of all His divine qualities, it is His Love that pleases us most. We love God, not because He is great, nor because He is Omniscient and Omnipotent and Omnipresent, nor because He is everything; but rather we love God precisely because He is all Love, and Love is the mightiest power. Now when we love someone, we devote our existence to that person. Since it is God whom we love, it is to God that we offer our devotion. And it is to God’s Will that we offer our human will. The surrender that we make to God is the conscious surrender of our soul to the Ultimate, the Absolute. This is not the surrender of a slave to his master but the surrender of our ignorant, unwilling, imperfect nature to our own illumining, liberated and perfected higher Being.
In our path we do not proselytise; we do not try to convert others. In our path we try to offer to others the Light that the Supreme has entrusted us with out of His infinite Bounty. There are some who may say, “If you have peace, light and bliss, why do you have to go all over the world to show it? Why do you have to go out and open Centres everywhere? If you own a pond, then anyone who is thirsty will come there to drink. The pond never goes to quench anyone’s thirst. It remains where it is.” But I wish to say that our path is the path of love, and that this is the kind of love that we see in a mother. When the child is hungry, no matter if he is in the living room, the bedroom or the kitchen — no matter where he is — the mother comes running to offer food to him. Similarly, we feel that there are many sincere seekers who are hungry for peace, light and bliss, and if we have received a little from the Almighty Supreme, we try to offer it to them. Like a shopkeeper, we offer certain things in our store, and those who like them may have them. Naturally, those who do not like what we have to offer have every right to go somewhere else. We will never say that our store is the only one.
Everybody has the right to inspire others. When we hold meditations, we try to inspire people. We never expect to convert people to our path. That is far beyond our imagination. We try to offer inspiration through our talks and answers to questions. When we have played the role of giving inspiration, we feel that we have offered a considerable service. For it is from inspiration that all of us get aspiration, and it is from aspiration that we get realisation. No matter which path or which spiritual Master you follow, you are bound to get some inspiration. When you go deep within, on the strength of your inspiration you will see that your aspiration looms large. And when your aspiration-flame climbs high, higher, highest, you will realise your true Self.