The five-fold action of God is as follows: Create, Sustain, Destroy, Conceal, Reveal. As human beings and therefore shrunken manifestations of God, we perform these five activities in a diminished form, believing we are powerful. We obviously create, sustain, destroy, and delude/conceal. Revelation or grace is harder for us, as individuals, to see or perform. Our “grace” is the grace of the small self: power and control rather than Love. This idea of grace usually means hitting “reset,” pretending to wipe our slates clean. So we continue the cycle of birth and death.
God clearly creates; just look at the wonder of birth, of life itself. God sustains the continued existence of the universe. Destruction happens on the level of decay, natural disasters, and human destructiveness, in which people who, in gratifying themselves, actually serve as the instruments of God’s destructive activity. God conceals by hiding the truth from us so as to maintain the game. As part of that game, we delude ourselves, insistently thinking we are honest and clear-sighted. If we only had these four activities, then we would never escape a constant misery. Create, sustain, destroy, and conceal. Create, sustain, destroy, and conceal. Over and over again. Where is the solution, the way home?
God’s fifth action is grace/revelation. God uses the Guru as the means to manifest His Grace. Shiva Sūtras II.6 says: The Guru is the means. “The Guru who has attained Self-realization can alone help the aspirant in acquiring it” (Singh 102). The Guru is the Grace bestowing Power of God. The Guru always shines a light. If the Guru is in the room, light still shines even if those nearby are blind to it. The Guru does not judge where to shine the light; it just shines. To be in the presence of such a being is a great gift, not to be taken lightly.
Swami Muktananda was one such being. To sit in his presence was to bathe in the Bliss of the Self. Baba shined the light of God everywhere he went. It emanated out of his body. The job of the people around him was to receive the grace.
Because of you, Baba I woke up.
Because of you, Baba I live and die.
Because of you, Baba I know my Self.
You were beyond pleasure and pain. You were about knowledge of Truth, not just shakti. You taught me what surrender is and what to surrender to. You taught me that we surrender all the time, just to the wrong things, the temporal. You taught me how to surrender, how to let go as a practice that rids us of all that is not Real. You taught me that I wasn’t just to sit and bask in your greatness. You taught me that I had a responsibility and an actual dharma to pursue.
We all have a part to play. We are not to be passive, but active; we are to work side by side with the shakti and the Guru to eliminate what keeps us from Us. We are to be a part of the cleaning crew.
God even uses false gurus—as agents of concealment and destruction who ironically help to deliver grace. Baba used to say, “Thank God for false gurus. How else would we know the true?”
The job of the true Guru is to uncover and destroy concealed delusion. We are to participate in this destruction of darkness. The problem is that so many times we believe we “know” the practice. The Guru removes our delusion about our practice.
People used to say, “I practice; I chant the Guru Gītā every day, I follow the ashram routine of chant, meditation, service”. People did not understand that those activities were only scaffolding, only the external discipline. There is nothing wrong with chanting, meditation, and service, but they are not sufficient on their own; they have to be performed while practicing inwardly. The practice is internal, using the will to surrender all to God and Guru; to rest in the Heart at all times. Practicing means giving up our individuality. That is what Baba did in relation to his Guru, and I pray I am strong enough to give all up to Baba.
Baba persistently destroyed my ideas of practice. He was always stripping away my wrong understanding. We never consciously choose ignorance, so when the Guru cuts like a surgeon trying to save the patient we may believe he is mean or cruel. If we resist, then the procedure takes much longer for us.
The Guru provides the function of grace for God. We are to surrender in order to receive this grace. We cannot receive the revelation if we are holding on to our ideas of ourselves, the Guru, and what practice is. When we surrender, our ideas disappear, and with them our ignorance.
We have to resolve this foursquare before we can share in the revelation. It is easy to maintain delusion; only the Guru will remove it.
|Guru||Small self/Individual in own right|
The Guru is the way God delivers Grace to us. The revelation Grace brings is that in Truth we are and have always been the Self.
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