IMAGINARY CONVERSATIONS WITH GOD
Devotee – Swami, last time You were telling us about Your flowing into our hearts. We thought about it, but could not understand the idea. We know the flowing of a river; but Your flowing into our hearts?
Swami - If you take me to be just another human body, with the mass of flesh and bones it has, maybe with some difference, you cannot understand. But if you can grasp the idea that this body is only a temporary home for me, as your body too is for you, and I am not confined in any way by the limitations of the body, maybe you are ready to experience me.
D - Then Swami, what are You? Who are You?
S - You cannot really describe in the language you are used to who I am, or what I am. Therefore Jesus described God-experience as waters of eternal life. You can understand a river flowing, you said?
D - Yes Swami, we can understand a river ceaselessly flowing into the sea.
S - Can you imagine that I am the source of such a river that flows from me towards your heart which needs to be washed and watered?
D - Hmm……Though the idea is tough, with a little practice, we can visualise that.
S – Can you also imagine that the waters of this river is sweet, cool, refreshing, full of vitality, and can make you feel great joy if you allow it to flow into your life? This river is gentlest of friends, and does not like to force itself into your heart. All the same, it is eager to befriend you.
D - Swami, why are you talking about permitting this river to flow into us, as you say? A river doesn’t need anyone’s permission to flow; on the other hand it removes any obstacle on its way, and moves on.
S – When it seeks its own salvation, no one can stop it, but if you want to irrigate your fields by its life-giving water you must gently lead it into your fields. When your mother comes to your house, and you don’t open your door for her, will she break it open to enter?
D – No; but I don’t understand why You are talking about my mother now. You were talking about a river, weren’t You?
S - Yes my child, this river is like a mother who wants to fill you with love.
D - What is this river, Swami?
S - Love. Imagine a glacier. An immense block of ice melts, and a glacier is born. Is the ice block different from the glacier? Aren’t they same?
D - Yes Swami, the ice and the water are but the same stuff.
S - So also me and my love. When you touch my love, you touch me. When I look at you my love goes out of me, and seeks to enter your heart. When you think of me you attract this river of my love to fill you, irrigate your life. The waters of this river can wash anything clean; fill any vessel with vitalising joy. But you must willingly open your heart to me.
D - Swami, I still don’t understand this opening of heart to your love. We love You; isn’t it enough to be loved by You?
S - My child, last time I explained to you what love means, didn’t I? I told you it is not just an emotion; it is feeling of oneness with the loved one. When you establish that unity, you will instinctively feel what the Beloved would want you to do, how He would feel about you. Shall I give you an example?
D - Yes Swami. That would clarify the idea.
S - Do you love your mother?
D - Of course yes.
S - Do you tell yourself since she looks after you, feeds you, fulfills your needs you must love her?
D – No Swami, it is spontaneous. I just love her.
S - Suppose she tells you not to go to a certain place, not to make friend with a certain person, or do a certain thing, and you know she would feel very hurt if you do, will you still go on with what pleases you?
D - I don’t think I would like to hurt her. But Swami, now I remember an interesting incident that happened to me last summer at home. Our neighbour has a boy of my age. One day he called me and asked me to be my friend. I just smiled at him. The next day he called me to a nearby park. I accompanied him, and we sat close to each other in a bench. There he started telling me things which I cannot repeat to anybody. Then I remembered my mother had warned me not to be friend with that boy. I felt guilty. My mother’s sad face flashed before my eyes. I stood up, and without looking back ran away from that place until I reached home, and hugged my mother. She patted me with love and asked me why I looked so much agitated. I was really gripped by some unknown fear. But after some time I was alright. Swami, how did I see my mother’s face at that time, and why was it a sad face?
S - This is flowing of love from one person to another.
D - How swami?
S - Since you truly loved your mother, and had opened your heart to the continuous flow of her love to you, her face flashed before your eyes when you needed protection, and pulled you away from the wrong person. Now, if a human mother’s love could do that, imagine how much more God’s love, which is God Himself, could do for you.
D - What can God’s love do for me?
S - How did you feel after you returned to your mother that day?
D - Oh, I felt so much relieved, so much protected. And Swami, I felt such an assurance, I knew no one can take me away from my mother. I continued to feel great strength within me for many days. That boy wanted to meet me again, but I had learnt my lesson.
S - You wouldn’t like to have that feeling, and in a much stronger way, all your life?
D - Oh, Swami, that would be a great blessing indeed.
S -That happens when you open your heart to me, and let me flow into it ceaselessly. I am always around you, within you; then how can the devil tempt you, take you away into wrong path? That is the meaning of my asking you follow the Master. If you allow me to flow into you, fill you with my presence, then you shall be overflowing with joy, with strength, with contentment. With my strength, you can look straight into the devil’s eye. In fact once you feel my presence within, you will see no devil at all.
D - How to do that Swami?
D - How to do that Swami?
S - I will tell you about that next time.