Paralysis of Analysis
Paralysis of analysis is a chronic ailment that generally affects striving disciples of all ages, and this usually results in a serious decline of the spiritual immune system. Unfortunately, its diagnosis is not as common as its occurrence – that is to say, we can be suffering from the disease without even knowing that we are affected.
If we constantly worry about the fact that we are not making any apparent progress on this path, if we keep tormenting ourselves over the idea that we are not able to control the mind or if we constantly agonize over our repeated blunders, then perhaps we should consider the possibility that we have become victims of this debilitating affliction.
When it comes to war with the mind, there are many more blows received than actually served, and in order to recuperate from these recurring falls, we can surely use all the care, encouragement and support that we can get. What we can certainly do without is the obsessive and compulsive analysis of each fall, which actually paralyzes us and prevents us from moving forward.
What we need are satsangs, books, seva and anything that can remind us and assure us of our Master’s relentless grace and love; anything that can make us realize that even if it is a struggle, we need to make sacrifices on the spiritual path.
Actually, we all know very well how much Master cherishes our failures because as far as he is concerned, they are an indication of our efforts; those very efforts that he just cannot resist. Another thing, of course, is the fact that we also know we are capable of giving much more than we are currently putting out in terms of effort, and this does make us feel ashamed at times.
We assume that there must be a limit to Master’s grace; after all how many times can we be forgiven for the same mistakes? But if it were limited, wouldn’t we have exhausted it a long time ago?
Grace is not something that we earn or something that is showered on us for a specific reason. If it were so it would not be grace. Grace is a gift that our Master bestows on us unconditionally from the day he initiated us.
We need to clearly understand that the Lord’s grace and mercy is limitless. In an answer to a sister who was complaining that so many satsangis felt that meditation seemed to become more difficult with the passage of time, Maharaj Charan Singh explained:
That is what they feel, that it is becoming increasingly difficult, because they become so anxious to achieve what they want to achieve, that when they don’t achieve it, they think their meditation is becoming difficult. Actually, it is becoming easier and easier. The very fact that they feel it is becoming difficult is because of the longing, the desire in their heart and their mind to go back to the Lord. And that is his love.
Die to Live
Our disappointment is only an indication of the fact that we long to be with him. We may be frustrated with our meditation. It may seem dull and pointless, but it is also true that if we continue to sit, it is because the pain of not thinking of our Master, the pain of not feeling love for him, is far worse.
Shame, regret and exasperation should only encourage us to try harder. If we analyze why we feel the way we feel every time we sit down to meditate, then we will never be able to move forward. On the contrary, we just make it worse for ourselves. It does not help to worry about those failures, which are in fact the very stepping-stones that will lead us to ultimate success.
Thus, rather than cursing the darkness of failure, we must try to learn from our mistakes and strengthen our resolve to light the candle of success.