Walking Hand in Hand
We are all looking for security in life – the kind of security that a baby feels when sitting in the lap of its mother. A baby trusts that all its needs will be fulfilled while feeling secure in its mother’s lap. There is no desire but to be with its mother. There is no other feeling than all is well. We long for that kind of contentment – for a state of mind where we desire nothing and are contented with everything we have. We find a sense of peace in such an aim. We find peace when we feel secure.
There is an innate desire within us to be loved and to love someone who will reciprocate that love. We feel secure when we have someone whom we think will look out for us – a companion, a friend who is always watching and protecting us, someone who will guide us through our troubles, and someone on whom we can rely. We eventually realize that we can never achieve that kind of security from the world.
We spend our lives trying to find that kind of security in worldly attachments. Sometimes we think that if we have possessions, wealth, beauty or power we will have security and nothing will harm us. We work like mules to have big houses, bigger cars, even bigger businesses or jobs – all of this, so that we can have a sense of security. We try to hold on to our material possessions, relationships, our sense of self-importance, and our illusions. And we worry about losing everything we have obtained. We do all of this to find a sense of peace and security. In the meantime, we lose ourselves and we don’t even realize it. It’s when we are introduced to the path of the saints that we begin to find true security.
Maharaj Charan Singh used to give the example of a child who goes to a fair holding his father’s hand. He finds all the attractions of the fair so fascinating. He wants to have it all – the different-coloured lights, various types of toys, so many types of delicacies. He thinks that he is finding pleasure and happiness from all of the things of the fair. But if he loses the grip of his father’s hand, he suffers from the excruciating pain of fear and insecurity. Then all the objects of the fair that were giving him so much pleasure become a source of misery.
Just like that child, we realize that if we have the protection of our Father’s company we can enjoy the fair of this world. We can wade through situations that arise – no matter how hard or difficult they may be. All we need to do is to be aware of the presence of the Divine in our lives and to hold on to our Master’s hand. Then we become aware of a strange yet familiar force. We come to recognize that we have a companion in whose company we are blissfully secure. He is constantly with us, helping and encouraging us to march on without fear, to conquer whatever is in front of us. When we look to our Father for guidance, we realize that he is always with us and is eager to guide and protect us.
But how do we hold the hand of our Father? Masters encourage us to establish our own relationship with our Father through meditation and living a certain way of life. Cultivating the habit of remembrance of the Divine aids us in feeling secure. We have been given tools at the time of initiation for doing this. Simran throughout the day assists us in holding on to the Divine, helps us to stay in the present moment, and improves our focus and objectivity. Simran helps us to be detached from emotional constraints and to look at situations more objectively. Simran helps us to redirect our mind away from negative thoughts toward positive energy.
To be thankful for every situation and to accept whatever comes our way helps us to keep him in our thoughts. An attitude of gratitude fills us with positive remembrance. A habit of looking up to him in every situation brings back memories of him. Doing the simran that he has given us is a way of sharing every moment with him and makes us appreciate his guiding hand. We will find that the more we reach for his hand by doing simran, the more we feel the presence of the Divine in our lives.
Building reflective moments into our daily routine provides a mental space where we can turn to him and remember him. Instead, we too often hold on to our illusions, like the child who is focused on the dancing lights of the fair but unconscious that he is holding his father’s hand. As we go through the fair of the world, our gentle Father is nudging us, reminding us that it is getting dark, and it’s time to go home. If we can pause for just a moment to feel that nudge – to feel that pull to go home – we will see how securely our heavenly Father is holding our hand. We will feel his hand safely guiding us through our life. This feeling helps us to go through life cheerfully with equanimity and to face anything and everything. We no longer have a feeling of being on the edge, worrying about what’s next. We become like a calm river flowing peacefully through life.
We make a habit of living in the shelter of our Master, with our hand in his, when we follow his advice to devote ourselves to meditation. Then we can spend our lives in peace and happiness, and when we die, we can go with him without a backward glance. Isn’t this the purpose of our life?