Grace is the greatest gift the Lord gives to us. Through his grace we are blessed with the opportunity to know him and worship him, to feel close to him. He is guiding us; he has come for us. He is showering us with grace all the time, whether we realize it or not.
There is an old Christian hymn about grace that says:
Amazing grace, how sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost, but now am found.
Was blind, but now I see.
The Lord in his mercy guides yearning souls back to him. We think we are trudging alone in darkness, but the Lord is within each and every one of us and provides the light to guide us back to him. As we travel home to the Lord, we are undertaking the journey of our lives in a race to free our soul. In doing so we need to remember it is a race against time, because death comes to everyone. We only have so many allotted years here to devote to this spiritual journey. Aside from limited time, we may exercise poor judgment leading to bad choices that hold us back. If we can shake ourselves awake and begin the race, we can take advantage of this opportunity the Lord has given us.
Many days it may seem like we are in a wrestling match with the world. And our opponent – all the temptations this world offers – is impressively strong and alluring. Lacking the tools to effectively fight our opponent, we may make choices that keep us here.
Until someone more knowledgeable and enlightened comes along to share a secret with us, we remain bound here. What is that secret? It’s really very simple. We don’t belong here. This world is not our true home. If that secret rings true to us, then the next question is, where do we belong?
In Sar Bachan Poetry, we are told how to make that journey to our true home where we really belong.
Establish your base at the third eye
and have darshan of the inner Master.
Always listen to the voice of the Shabd Guru,
burn to ashes the low cravings of your mind
and merge into him.
This form of the Master is of unsurpassed beauty –
it will light up your inner being
like the radiant glow of the sun.
Until we are at the eye centre, we live in ignorance and merely bumble along in our day-to-day existence. To experience the Shabd, we have to take our place at the third eye. Yet we wonder: where and what is that third eye? We can’t see it or feel it. The doctor won’t find it in an autopsy. Typically people use their outer senses to try and understand the teachings of the saints. We hear with these two ears and we see with these two eyes in order to hear and read the teachings or see the physical form of the Master. But it is only through the third eye – that unseen inner eye – that we can truly know the teachings of the saints.
To open that third eye we need a Master. Only by the Master’s grace can we reach it. His guiding hand is always there. Maharaj Charan Singh tells us in Spiritual Perspectives, Vol. I: “His grace is what pulls you back to him.” His grace is what attaches us to him.
Just as he pulls us to him through grace, there are many worldly influences that attempt to pull us away from him. This puts us in a tug of war between the world and the Lord. While the Lord will always win, we still must overcome so many temptations. The world reaches out to grab us through the senses and the five passions of lust, anger, greed, attachment, and ego.
When we are driven by these five passions, we become trapped here. Through the help of the Master all of these can be overcome. Over time lust can become compassion; anger can become kindness; greed can become generosity; attachment can become detachment; and ego can become humility. Through his grace, higher qualities start to shape us and transform our lives. As these qualities are manifested in our thoughts and actions, we are guided toward the Lord.
As we go through the events of life, the Master is always watching over and protecting us. He serves as a bail bondsman sent to get us out of the jail of this world. Through meditation the ties to this world are loosened and we become detached from everything binding us here. By loosening those bonds we free ourselves and become attached to the Lord.
The Master tells us repeatedly that if we put the Lord first, then he will take care of everything for us. But how often do we put everything else first, and put the Lord last? When that happens, we lose our way and things get turned upside down. Eventually, we may desperately call upon the Lord for his help and our focus will shift from worldly endeavours to worship of the Lord.
Through grace, we are being prepared for our ultimate destination. Each and every day we travel a little closer toward that spiritual goal. On this journey the Lord reveals many things to us. He does not keep secrets from us. In fact, through the Master, he reveals everything. He tells us the truth.
First, through the Master, he tells us that we no longer have to stay in this world. Second, he explains that the role of the Master is to guide us home, to free us from the chains of this worldly existence. Third, he explains, the way to open our inner eye is simple and done through our meditation, even though it may seem impossible. However, nothing is impossible if we trust and believe in the Lord. The Master tells us repeatedly, we are destined to merge back into the Lord. Hazur says in Quest for Light:
When by the grace of the perfect Master one is put in touch with the magnetic Word, one’s eyes are opened and blindness is cured. The inner light shines forth and the darkness of ignorance melts away.
Every day we are showered with amazing grace that will cure us of our blindness and open our heart to the Lord. Let us commit ourselves to the journey home.