- The world is not what it seems. Now your bustling senses, your restlessness thoughts, your urge to get up and go and blast yourself with sensations - all this tells you that what you see, feel or think is all there really is. But this is not actually so. There is a whole universe inside you, you are just looking outwards, the wrong way to perceive it. Furthermore, you are dominated by the erroneous belief that you are your thoughts. But, you know, there is a life beyond the active mind, there is a bliss beyond thoughts. You just have to learn to settle the mind down. This is the whole purpose of spiritual practice.
- The world is, again, not what it seems. There are hidden powers at work in the world, not always wanting to benefit humanity. Power groups, the entitled, hold a firm economic strangehold on the world. The dice is stacked against you. Your role in this world of hidden influence is simply to consume, to be mesmerised by the glitter of the world - by sex, money, food, possessions. All are there to keep you earning money for powerful, concealed interests. Equally, beyond this malign layer, is something much more wonderful. There are even more powerful hidden forces for good in the world, great souls who are mostly hidden away, who work to counteract the forces of negativity and darkness that are so powerful in this Kali Yuga age. Humanity has helpers as well as enemies, and the helpers are the ones with true power.
- Spirituality is not a question of amount, of how much you do. you cannot apply worldly considerations of doing this much to get so and so a result into spirituality. This basic mistake is repeated time and time again: "If I chant this chant for 1,000 days then I will get all these wonderful benefits, God will come knocking." No: it is not how much you do, it is the attitude with which you do it. God does not demand of us a miserable life of chanting something over and over with no love or taste for the words, simply to get something. The real way to holiness is to apply reverence, respect, and artistry to your life. You carve a life, bit by bit, which is a glorious work of art, if you become really serious about Self-realisation. Finding God is not some kind of economic transaction, but a way of love given freely, over and over again.
- Be gentle but firm with yourself: a wholesome discipline, grounded above all in ethical behaviour, is absolutely vital in spiritual life. Without it, laziness and bad habits begin to exert a stranglehold on life and before you know it, your chance to find God has passed you by because you were too distracted by other things. At this stage in your life, you need to chip away at habits before they become life-long.
- You will still have a tremendous energy and idealism. This will fade as you get older, but such gifts of youth is what can make a young person on the spiritual path do amazing things. The old do not have this energy. So, make use of it. There is an English saying "Make hay while the sun shines". This is your chance to use energy for the good of all, not just for your own self-gratification.
- Find a source of peace, and enlarge it. Whatever it is, explore it. peace is not the same as zoning out, as dullness and slumping out in front of a TV screen. The peace we are talking about has a whole different quality. You may find peace in nature, or in having children, or reading, or meditating and worshipping. This peace will be invaluable later on in your life.
- Drop your self-pity. Many people as they grow up begin to realise the world is not going to reward them in the way they think it should, and they do not become instantly famous and rich. This discovery can start a whole life time of "poor me" kind of thinking. Get over it. get over yourself, there is nothing marking you out if it is not grounded in effort and self-discipline. Move on, and accept that others had exactly the same kind of dreams - they are commonplace. The woes we faced have been faced by humans in every age. Discover humility and modesty. They will stand you in very good stead. But do not go overboard with your cries of sorrow. Cry for God instead.
- Live ethically and responsibly. Above all, do not be harsh or bitter to others. And never break another's heart. And do not be prejudiced against "the others", people you consider to be troublesome or hateful in some way, perhaps from another faith, race or culture. Drop your weapons, and behave with great dignity and reverence for others, even if you are hurt by them.
- If you have a talent, develop it, but in private, and using disciplined practice. Polish this talent so that it helps lighten the hearts of others, not hurt them.
- Age naturally brings wisdom. even the greatest fool in the world can end a long life wiser than when they began it. Don't worry too much about making serious mistakes. If it is done, it is done. Pick yourself up and move on. And apologise without reserve.
- Respect time always. those who keep appointments, turn up on time and keep their promises earn enormous and well-deserved respect from others. Become trustworthy. Even if everyone laughs at you now, resolve to change. Don't announce this to others, but resolve to be the kind of person others can rely on. This is part of maturing.
- Observe and learn timing. This is a key quality to master. Everything has a natural timing to it, as events, people, thoughts, rise and fall. This is the basis of martial arts, the ability to align exactly with mysterious flows in life. When you are seeking for a change of fortune, a new task etc, carefully remember that the timing has to be right. Too often, the immature human gets timing all wrong over every little detail. Yogis as well as the great martial artists demonstrate an exquisite alignment with the timing of life. Your very first lesson, and its a good one by the way, is to observe either sunrise or sunset very carefully, and notice the steady way the light grows or fades. Great business leaders have also a great sense of timing. Opportunities present themselves rarely. Be ready for them. Equally, bad times appear... learn to read the signs of timing.
- Develop a focus for reverence. If you worship God in as particular form, then keep that form in your heart with great honour. The older you get, the more this form will help and instruct you in the silent depths of your being.
- Be alert to misfortune and sudden upsets. Life can often go spectacularly wrong and not according to your own plans. Accept that this can happen - that each rose has a thorn, and be aware that bad times can come, but can be endured too. Sometimes the storms come, the storms linger until you forget there even is a sun in the sky. But there is, and eventually the rays of that sun will light your life again. Learn, therefore, patient endurance.
- Temper your impetuosity with restraint. Don't always jump off a cliff without thinking. This is the behaviour of an immature child. God gave you the weapon of common sense. Use it.
- Don't go sour on life. Your life can become a hell for others around you if you are sour and bitter about everything. Who wants to be around such a person? Bitterness destroys the beauty of youth. Do not let bitterness about life, your family, your poverty, your failed relationships, lead you by the nose. It is a dreadful blind alley, to be bitter.
- Don't be a hypocrite: there is nothing worse in spiritual life than someone going around thinking they are so holy that others should bow at their feet. No, child, you are no holier than anyone else, so do not put on airs and graces, and then secretly do things of which you are ashamed, This is a very human behaviour, but try and walk your talk, and if you want to be holy then be humble and silent.
- Families are your teachers. You are stuck with them. But over the years as a family deals with all the changes in life, people's hard edges get a lot softer. Don't nurse grudges against brothers and sisters. Families tend to fight and squabble, but... forgive. Forgive. Forgive.
- Laziness is the enemy of spirituality. You know what I mean.
- Love, it's still all about that. How can you build love, let it grow, nurture it like you would a plant, protect it? That's your own life task. But as a famous song in the West goes, "And in the end, the love you make will be equal to the love you take." Think about that.
- Plan you career wisely, and recognise that even in worldly life, the road to mastery is a long one. there are no short cuts. Learn from mentors, learn from those you admire. Copy their chracteristics, if they are inspiring. In this way, in the fullness of time, you too will achieve mastery of worldly life.
Jump into experience while you are alive!
Think... and think... while you are alive.
What you call "salvation" belongs to the time
If you don't break your ropes while you're alive,
do you think
ghosts will do it after?
The idea that the soul will join with the ecstatic
just because the body is rotten—
that is all fantasy.
What is found now is found then.
you will simply end up with an apartment
in the City of Death.
you will have the face of satisfied desire.
So plunge into the truth, find out who the Teacher is,
believe in the Great Sound!
Kabir says this: When the Guest is being search for,
it is the intensity of the longing for the Guest
that does all the work.