The Real Miracle
During our trials and tribulations, when all avenues are exhausted and all hope is lost, we often say, “Let’s pray for a miracle.” The English Oxford Dictionary defines a miracle as “an extraordinary and welcome event that is not explicable by natural or scientific laws and is therefore attributed to a divine agency.”
When we read about the lives of saints, we sometimes come across stories of miracles meant to inspire, or ignite faith and belief in God. Today, however, the common view is that miracles are life-saving occurrences, which lead us to believe that our circumstances and our destinies can be altered by some form of divine intervention.
But Maharaj Charan Singh tells us in Spiritual Perspectives, Vol. I that “Saints never interfere with the destiny of anybody at all.”
On the other hand, Hazur often related that miracles do happen in the lifetime of saints because they are compassionate, kind and soft-hearted.
But performing miracles or attracting people by miracles is not their purpose of coming to this world. And a real miracle is something individual between the disciple and the Master. It is not a public demonstration.
Maharaj Charan Singh, Spiritual Perspectives, Vol. III
When Hazur acknowledges the occurrence of miracles but at the same time affirms that nothing can change a disciple’s destiny, what is the real miracle that the Master is referring to? How does the Master help his disciples when he does not change the unfortunate circumstances in their lives?
In the Bible, we read: “For judgment came I into this world, that they that see not may see; and that they that see may become blind.” This means that a true Master seeks to change our attitude in life. Maharaj Charan Singh beautifully explains this biblical passage:
Those who see only the world, see only the creation, are attached only to the creation – I have come to make them blind, meaning I have come to detach them from this creation. And I want to give them those eyes which see only the Father.
When the Master initiates us and we practise meditation, we slowly detach from this creation and become attached to the Creator. For a disciple, this gradual change in attitude – from being attached to everything worldly to being content with our destiny and being at peace with ourselves – is considered a miracle in itself.
Hazur Maharaj Ji goes on to explain what the natural signs are when this transformation takes place.
People who were running after worldly things and worldly desires don’t want to look at them anymore, don’t want to see them and they have no time to talk to anybody. Day and night they are filled with love and devotion for the Father. What more of a miracle can a disciple have than this? His whole approach to life changes. Where people weep and cry, a disciple becomes happy. That is a miracle, which comes into every person’s life when he comes to the path.
Spiritual Perspectives, Vol. III
When we achieve this state of contentment in our lives, we do not feel the need to seek happiness from anything worldly, be it material things or relationships. We find ourselves accepting any situation we are in, and adversities no longer disturb our peace of mind. But how do we attain this peaceful state of mind? How will this miraculous change in our attitude occur?
First, we need to understand who the Master is and who he is not. He is not a genie who grants our every wish, nor is he a doctor who cures our illnesses. He is not a stockbroker who advises us on our financial investments; nor is he a marriage counsellor who will help us reconcile differences we have with our spouses; nor is he an astrologer who reads into our future. The Master is our living guide who has come to this world to inspire us to turn towards the Lord.
Second, we need to understand the nature of a “miracle” in Sant Mat. We like to give credit to the Master when something good happens in our life or when a wish of ours is ‘granted’. But those circumstances may have already been in our destiny due to our past good karmas. Likewise, if something does not go our way, then we drag the Master down from the same pedestal that we once put him on. That is a very unstable foundation on which to build our faith.
Maharaj Charan Singh Ji defines what a true miracle is and how the change in our attitude occurs.
A miracle is the remission of our karmas – how much remission we get inside, what help we get to go through our karmas in this life so that we are not affected by the worst karmas which we have to face. These are the miracles of the Master. He gives us strength to face those karmas, so they are just pinpricks for us now.
Spiritual Perspectives, Vol. III
This is further explained in the following passage:
By doing the daily meditation practice, repeating simran during the day, and following the instructions given to us at the time of initiation, we slowly and gradually develop a level of equanimity that enables us to go through the ups and downs of life without losing our balance. Peace of mind and confidence come from the practice. The understanding dawns that whatever is happening is just the unfolding of our own karmic account. Slowly and gradually, an appreciation of the master’s ever-present support grows within us.
A Wake Up Call
There are two ways we can approach the spiritual path. One way would be to beg the Master to change the circumstances of our lives. That option would lead us nowhere because the Masters almost always adhere to the laws of nature. Insisting on what we want only weakens our will-power and causes us even more unhappiness.
The other way is to simply obey the Master’s instructions and do our daily practice of meditation. The clear reason to support this option is stated in a letter from Baba Jaimal Singh to his disciple Baba Sawan Singh:
Whatever karmas are written on your forehead cannot be erased by anyone. Have firm faith and remain content in your mind. Always keep the Satguru’s form in your mind. Then the mind, becoming pure, will receive the full rapture of the Dhun. Worldly hopes, desires, and attachments, which are the root of all suffering, will then immediately leave the mind. They will never stay where the perfect Satguru’s form is present.
Baba Jaimal Singh assures us that if we remain steadfast in the practice of listening to the Shabd, all our worries of the world will disappear. In the presence of the Shabd – which is the true form of the Master – nothing remains.
Our attitude towards life should be positive. Whatever is in our destiny, fortunate or unfortunate, will give us the opportunity to clear our load of karmas and achieve spiritual maturity. As Hazur Maharaj Ji explains about difficult circumstances:
It may be essential for the patient to take that bitter medicine. At the most, the doctor will sugar-coat it. So similarly, the Master will give us strength to face that situation.
Spiritual Perspectives, Vol. III
As disciples, we have to accept the fact that sometimes, the Master’s grace can be a bitter pill. He will do whatever it takes to make us blind to the world and open our eyes to the eternal truth. This, by itself, is the greatest form of grace and the real miracle.