The Aspirant and Nama
Those who believe that every word only echoes the divine name are indeed peculiarly blessed. We entertain love for only the nama of our particular deity, but when realized persons hear any utterance by anybody, they feel it is the divine name.
Do not bother about the way to utter nama; do it in any way you like or can, but see that you cling firmly to it. Experience for yourself the efficacy of nama-smarana. Remember nama when sense-objects try to lure you.
What did Prahlad do except chanting nama? Love nama with his fervour. This is just what all devotees have done. Nama-smarana is the pathway to God. Do that, and sense-lures will automatically die out.
A sadhaka should be softhearted like butter; agreeable to all, and hurtful to none. You can do this only by being absolutely unselfish. If anyone bows in respect, the sadhaka should remind himself that he does not deserve it, so that he will neither be puffed with vanity, nor feel slighted when not so saluted. After doing a good turn, he should not tarry there lest he may have to listen to praise or gratitude.
One who aspires to attain to God should realize that he has now entered the wrestling pit, and must not be shy of being soiled by the red soil of its bed. The wise wrestler rolls first in that soil to overcome such shyness.
There are two ways to reach God. One is, to live in His remembrance, free of all anxiety, and in the firm faith that whatever has happened so far has been only by His will, that whatever is 'mine' really belongs to Him and so He will take care of it, that whatever He does must be for the good of all, and that the future, too, will be at His will.
The other way is to remain in contemplation of God, relinquishing all attachment, and with the conviction that "I belong to God and to none else." This way is more difficult because the sadhaka has to sever all ties of attachment but that to God, for true love is single-minded.
Begin to act using your faculty of discernment between good and bad; the mind will automatically follow. Saints, therefore, advise us not to seek to subdue the mind but rather to turn it to God.
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