The Path of Divine-Love-Consciousness:
Awakening the Inner Spark of Divinity
By Gyaneshwari Devi
If you have ever had a fascination with the spiritual teachings of India, you were probably inspired by an intuitive feeling that the land of Bharat, as India is known in Sanskrit, represents a Divine nucleus on this earth. The Divine origin and the very foundation of India's spiritual heritage is found in the Sanskrit scriptures of India. These sacred writings are not the writings of a particular Saint, but are actually eternal Divine powers that were originally revealed on this earth 155 trillion years ago by God Himself.
A prominent Sanskrit verse of the Vedas says, "Through bhakti, God is visualized; through bhakti, God is known; through bhakti, you can merge in God; through bhakti you see God in His Divine personal form." All scriptural knowledge and all paths described in the scriptures culminate in bhakti. All spiritual seekers who desire to find God must come to this point, called divine-love-consciousness in modern English. This consciousness is the joining link between a soul and God.
By following three steps anyone can enter into divine-love-consciousness. The first step is defining your spiritual goal.
You know you are looking for happiness. But 'you' from a scriptural point of view means not just body and mind, but also soul. The soul is your true and spiritual self. It is a fraction of God, eternal and Divine. The soul also has one desire; it is yearning for such a love that could extend the peace and happiness of your mind to a non-ending limit and make your heart blissful forever. That love is neither a feature of your own mind nor a quality of this mundane world. That is God.
This same philosophy was conveyed several hundred years ago in the writings of a Saint named Kabir Das. He said, "A tiny fish is living in the ocean such a small creature in such a vast sea! In spite of this, the fish is thinking of only one thing, 'I am dying of thirst! Where can I find water?' Listen carefully, oh souls! Wandering in the world searching for material happiness, you always remain bereft. Yet, that which your soul seeks is omnipresent everywhere; He is eternal, Divine and Blissful.
Find God and you will find Divine happiness which will make you happy forever."
The second step is finding a qualified teacher. In any age, great Masters impart this eternal path of Divine unity through the radiance of their being and their simple and direct teachings, such that any seeker of God's love could feel a deep inner consolation from their association and guidance. Such true Saints never give material blessings.
Sanatan Goswami was a great rasik Saint (a Saint who had received the Divine vision of Krishn) who lived in the holy town of Vrindaban in India. Many days' journey from there, lived a poor but pious man. One morning, while half asleep, the man heard someone gently whispering in his ear. When he opened his eyes no one was there, but the voice was clear.
"Go to Vrindaban and Sanatan Goswami. He will reveal to you what will give you the greatest satisfaction." He left immediately for Vrin-daban. He was a sincere devotee of God, but having lived in poverty his whole life, he thought, "Maybe I will become wealthy. Then again, maybe I will receive Divine enlightenment." Imagining like this, he found Sanatan Goswami and told him about his dream.
Sanatan Goswami lived in a simple hut with few belongings and very little to eat. He said, "The only thing I can give you is God's love.
What else do I possess? You can see that I don't even have proper clothes to wear." The pious man felt disappointed. Seeing his ambition, Sanatan Goswami added, "A few days ago when I was bathing in the holy river Yamuna, a precious jewel came into my hands. I had no use for it so I buried it in the sand. But I can tell you where to find it." The pious man was overjoyed. Searching the banks of the river, he found the jewel and saw it was worth a fortune. Then he began to think, "That Saint appears to be living in such a state of poverty, yet he has thrown this jewel away."
Reflecting thus, he stood there for a while, dropped the jewel on the ground and went back. With folded hands he humbly approached San-atan Goswami and said, "I had some ambition to become rich because I was born poor. But you have opened my eyes. I now understand that these things have no spiritual value. Please give me what makes you happy and contented."
An open-minded seeker benefits from the lessons that a Saint teaches, whether these are in the form of the Saint's words, actions or writings, and with his surrendered heart he enters the path of God realization by following the Saint's guidelines.
Thus, the third step is learning the correct process of divine-love-consciousness. Devotion takes place in the heart or emotional mind. It is not an intellectual practice of concentration, transcendence, contemplation or the evolving of psychic powers. It is not a physical practice or ritualistic worship. From your heart you remember and desire your Divine beloved with devotional emotions. You feel a longing to receive His Grace, love and vision. As such, divine-love-consciousness is not a practice, rather it is a spiritual development that takes place in your heart.
Another Saint of India, Meera Bai, explained this process in one of her devotional songs. She wrote, "The seed which was in my heart remained unsprouted until I watered it with the tears of my love. I offered it the warmth of my affection and now it has sprouted. Opening its leaves as it grows, soon it will blossom."
H.D. Swami Prakashanand Sara-swati, a Saint living in this age, relates the same secret of devotion by explaining that in the deepest, unconscious section of the mind, every soul has an unevolved devotional power which is like a dormant seed. When this seed of divine love is developed, the result is a deep feeling of loving relationship or affinity for God. But as with the sprouting of any seed, it is most important to know the favorable conditions that will inspire its growth. If those conditions exist, the seed will follow a natural course to full development.
When divine-love-consciousness begins to develop in the mind, when the inner spark of Divinity is awakened, a spiritual rejuvenation of your entire personality slowly takes place. The warming rays of true selfless love for your Divine beloved will open the lotus of your heart to receive the eternal shower of God's Grace. That Grace is the direct means of knowing God in His true and eternal form.
Gyaneshwari Devi is a teacher of the International Society of Divine Love and a disciple of H.D. Swami Prakashanand Saraswati, a Saint of the raganuga bhakti tradition. She will be giving lectures and workshops on divine-love-consciousness in the Los Angeles area from April 2 through May 6, 1999. Check out the website at www.isdl.org
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