In my last post I started speaking about merit. This point is generally overlooked by a lot of people due to the veil drawn by spiritual ignorance. For example:
- They think that they can understand “anything” about spiritual matters “provided” a teacher explains it to them in detail.
- They think that their intellects are strong enough to deal with “any” spiritual scripture.
- They think that the Self is “just” Love and therefore He will give them His treasures just like that… out of sheer Love!
- They think that they can indulge in sense pleasures all day long, but a little prayer to the Self will do the trick.
- They think that if they find a great spiritual Master, he will give his enlightened state right away.
- They think that they are evolving “naturally”.
- They think that the spiritual teachers must teach them because they are… “them”.
- They think that if they just offer enough money, a spiritual teacher must give them his spiritual treasures.
- They think that they will be saved “in the end” in spite of their absolutely moronic life.
Well, most of them “do not say all that openly“, but they think like that and this kind of dull thought shows in their attitudes. This sort of thought is the result of spiritual ignorance in them. Now, my answers to each of their illusions:
- This is not possible because the level of understanding “changes” according to your level of direct experience. If your level of direct experience of the Self is poor, you will not understand many things related to spirituality, no matter how hard a teacher tries to explain them to you.
- This is not possible for the most part. You can verify this easily by going to the Main Site and reading some of the scriptures I translated. Even with my frequent notes of explanation you will notice that the majority are hard to understand.
- The Self is NOT just Love. He is ALL and even more. And, let me say to you that His dark aspect is prominent in this world to the vast majority of people. If you do not believe me, just take a history book and read. The amount of suffering to be found while one reads about human history is just unbelievable. So, this conception that the Self is just Love is nonsensical on this planet. The Self appears as only Love to a saint (a great spiritual personality), obviously, because such a person had gained his freedom. The rest are still at the mercy of His dark aspect in the form of spiritual ignorance. Besides, if the Self was “just” Love, there would be no spiritual ignorance in the first place, and the question about “spiritual enlightenment” or “final liberation” would be pointless then.
- This will not work. Most of the time, final freedom from the grip of spiritual ignorance needs great efforts made for a long time. Especially at the end of the spiritual journey, when you have the goal within your reach, spiritual ignorance will storm you in a devastating way, and I am totally sure about this! Anyway, my statement is encouraging to spiritual aspirants who are feeling disappointed because they could not get spiritual enlightenment despite having meditated for 15 minutes every day for one year! If you are prone to disappointment at the smallest failure, you have to overcome this tendency first or the spiritual path will become very disheartening to you.
- Even if such a Master wanted to give his enlightened state to everyone, he could not do so because most people are just undeserving. Moreover, their systems would just get damaged in the process due to the “high voltage” of a Superior Reality. A person, who is not deserving and well-trained enough, would just collapse if he was brought to a higher level of consciousness instantly.
- There is natural evolution but it is so slow that it is practically irrelevant to a human lifetime. Hence they must find a shortcut if they want to evolve faster.
- A person told me some time ago that I should read a portion of Tantrāloka (a great treatise I am transcribing at present) in order for her to advance spiritually. I said “No”. She felt very surprised at my refusal. I explained to her that I had been making efforts for 27 years in order to reach Tantrāloka and its wisdom… why to take the trouble to read it to her then? She could not give me any consistent reason for me to do so, except that she was “her”… and you know, she was “naturally” deserving because of being “her”, hehe. And of course, as usual, she finally took offense at my words and went away. Human arrogance is everywhere. Somehow there are plenty of people considering that they are “naturally” worthy of all the spiritual treasures a guy like me could get after making enormous efforts for a long time. This is another product of spiritual ignorance, obviously. I am sharing my translations of many sacred scriptures and now my reading of Tantrāloka with the visitors of this website only because “I wish to do so”, not because “I am bound to do that”. There is no teacher who “is bound” to give you spiritual knowledge only because you are “you”. The matter about “merit” is very often overlooked by people as if they were great spiritual personalities. It is not “on purpose”, but the effect of mere unnoticed arrogance.
- This will not work with a genuine spiritual teacher. Of course, it will work with false guru-s easily. A genuine spiritual teacher has direct experience of his Self to a certain extent. There are great spiritual teachers and others not so great, but all of them, being genuine ones, have realized the Self at least during 1 second. As they have made tremendous efforts against their inherent spiritual ignorance, you cannot expect mere money to grant you access to their treasures. Even if this was possible, the Power of the Self will prevent you from keep advancing. Spiritual ignorance cannot be bribed that way because the Self is the Owner of all. Your money means nothing to Him.
- One cannot lead an absolutely moronic life and at the same time think that he will be saved by the Self “in the end”. This is just another illusion created by spiritual ignorance. This is why one must abandon, little by little and with the aid of special instructions, the usual moronic way of living, i.e. all the time pleasing one’s senses, searching real happiness through other people or objects, etc. Instead, he should make greater and greater efforts in order to please the Self. If the Self is not duly pleased, there will not be His Grace upon you. If His Grace is not upon you, you are doomed to bondage. There is no way out then. You have to accumulate merit and please Him in every possible way. To do this, you must gradually stop pleasing your ego. To constantly please your ego and at the same time to believe that you will please Him that way is just foolish. It will not work.
All those examples I gave are “common” illusions pertaining to a limited individual. Not all of them will have similar attitudes, evidently, but there is always that illusion about their merit taken for granted. They generally think that they are already worthy from the very start. This is known as human arrogance. One day they go to a genuine teacher with all their arrogance and apparent merit and he will “refuse to teach them”. They will feel offended or at least bewildered. This situation is pretty common since human foolishness is everlasting like the Self Himself, haha.
All in all, merit is vital for the spiritual path. This is the reason why you are given, for example, a broom, when you enter a genuine spiritual community. You thought that you would be spiritually instructed immediately, but that doesn’t happen. Instead, you receive a broom and the instruction to sweep the courtyard of a Yoga center or something. Why? Because you need to accumulate merit for pleasing Him. Till the moment you get the broom, you have been generally pleasing your little ego, but now you have to sweep for the sake of something greater. You sweep for the good of other people, for the development of spiritual teachings in that community, for the teacher, etc. In short, you are sweeping for Him, the Self, and stop serving the “limited individual” at least for the time you are sweeping there. This is one way to get merit.
I will keep talking about this topic in my next post.