In Melbourne: Franz Kieser, Anne MacDonald, Henry Warszawski, Julie Caddy and Noel Davies.
Something really nice happened to The Golden Age this month: we got some letters (see Page 22), and we got some contributions. They're nothing fancy, just people talking about their lives and Knowledge, but personally, that's what interests and helps me most. So I'd just like to say "Thank you and keep it up," to everyone who wrote, and to encourage others to do it, too. I really feel that together, we can make this paper an expression of what is so deep in us, that it will make good reading for anyone who picks it up.
from Laurence Browne, Brisbane.
A favourite quote of mine is one of Mahatma Ghandi's: "There is enough room in this world for every man's need, but not enough for his greed". This sums up current economic and political situations pretty well and perhaps even has some bearing on our own spiritual development. There's more than enough fulfillment available for anyone who cares to make a real breakthrough in practising the Knowledge, but for the rest of us who choose to get bogged down in the seven cardinal sins (one of which, by the way, is greed), there often seems to be literally not enough room in this world.
I often find I want to "do" something, although I can't quite put my finger on what; or I want to "achieve" something, or be doing "the right thing for me." To be honest, most of the time I feel like the chap in the parable of the talents who, instead of making the most of what he has been given and increasing it fifty or a hundred-fold, buries it and achieves nothing.
However, I do experience breakthroughs when everything that has been happening falls into place and confusion gives way to clarity. During these times the world is brighter, my meditations are intense and meaningful with greatly reduced mind-wandering and falling asleep, and satsang situations occur where the level of exchange and understanding is so much more sublime than the normal boring semi-paranoid slog of
No. 35, January 1977
my everyday consciousness. When I experience the state of "Truth is the consciousness of bliss," I can really live and propagate Knowledge. But all too often my ego inflates, I swell with pride of spiritual achievement, put my foot in it and return to the old normal boring everyday consciousness.
So what's needed is a real breakthrough to so firmly entrench me into the practice of Knowledge that I can begin to enjoy that perception which Guru Maharaj Ji speaks about as our ultimate goal.
"In a resolute struggle of the good against evil, there are, however, definite rules that must not be disregarded, if it is to succeed. First resolution must be based on a union of strength and friendliness. Second, a compromise with evil is not possible, evil must under all circumstances be openly discredited. Nor must our passions and shortcomings be glossed over. Third, the struggle must not be earned on directly by force. If evil is branded it thinks of weapons, and if we do it the favour of fighting against it blow for blow, we lose in the end at home because thus we ourselves get entangled in hatred and passion. Therefore it is important to begin at home, to be on guard in our own persons against the faults we have branded. In this way, finding no opponent, the sharp edges of the weapons of evil become dulled. For the same reasons we should not combat our own faults directly. As long as we wrestle with them, they continue victorious. Finally the best way to fight evil is to make energetic progress in the good." In other words, practise satsang, service and meditation as Guru Maharaj Ji recommends.
The quotation, by the way, is taken from a commentary on the hexagram of Breakthrough (Resoluteness) in the I Ching. Difficult though it may seem to put this advice into practice, we must, for "When joy has mounted high, as a lake mounts to the heavens, it easily leads to excessive pride; hence it must be supplemented by the beneficient way of heaven."
More than you can imagine
from Cathy Lowrie, Sydney
We talk of love and imagine secretly how it should be, could be and very often we marvel at how it really is; pure and innocently untouched by the contortions we can project on our surroundings.
So often we try to grab hold of this experience by trying to grab hold of and possess another person's being, but the experience of love being so vast and supreme slips through our grasp yet again. So often before I knew of Knowledge I'd despairingly wonder how I was going to find happiness from someone else when I couldn't even be satisfied within myself. We feel, when we lose someone's love, that all we're left with is an aching heart, because we had an idea about what we thought we should receive and as usual we thought wrong.
When we remember what the present has to offer then we gain so much. Since meditating I can feel such a strong bond of love for so many people. Not a demanding, possessive kind of love, but a recognition of the beauty that lies within other people. Whether they meditate or not this beauty is easily detected, but it seems when they are in contact with the source then it's often so much easier to see and feel.
I can see the premies I live with relating to each other in this way too. No longer are we a household told to live together because Maharaj Ji wants us to, (we began as a community centre), but just a group of people who want to be happy and experience living in harmony with each other. Everyone seems to have their highs and lows, but together or individually we're all realising whether Knowledge is important in our life or not. It's such an individual thing and yet the people around you can have such an influence.
Slowly day by day I'm realising how practical and essential meditation is in my life. No longer can I drift off to sleep feeling smug with the thought that at last I've found the "perfect, infinite Knowledge of the universe" because then I've wasted the chance to be united with it. There's no time for theories in my life, only the experience I have within myself when I use the techniques I've been shown.
So my concentration and determination are growing and I find myself learning more and more about the beauty and serenity that envelopes us day and night. We can do so much for each other if we first of all do it for ourselves.