Feelings-sentiments and faith develops in a saint, on associating with him time and again, on gaining knowledge of his qualities and influence, and on following his instructions. And thereafter one develops steady faith in him.
A saint is eternal. There is no such time on earth and in the atmosphere, that there is not a “yati” ascetic, a “sati” (pure chaste wife), righteous person “dharmaatma” and a “sant” (saint). Even in this day and age you can meet a saint, and you can meet such saints, that will see to your spiritual progress. But how can they meet us? We do not even have a deep longing to meet them! Therefore we must increase that inner longing that we want to meet a genuine saint.
If there is no one who is there to take advantage of his teachings, during a saint’s lifetime, then too, his principles will remain steady in the atmosphere, by which in the future if anyone is born who wants to benefit from the saint’s teachings, then he can do so.
It is not that all saints are one and the same. Even though there is no difference in their natural state, however due to their “varna”, “ashram” (stage in life), associations, self-study, nature, their methods and spiritual practices, etc., and due to differences in their spiritual discipline, even in a state of realization, one can see differences in their beliefs, conduct and method of discourse.
Saints do not make anyone their disciples. However, if anyone considers themselves to be their follower, then who can stop them in doing so? When a person accepts a particular saint with a true heart, and begins to follow him, having faith in God, then it becomes God’s responsibility to see to his supreme good. But the acceptance and belief must be genuine. It means that in the aspirant’s mind there must be faith and desire only of God Realization and he is also committed to abiding in the principles. Then the aspirant having no insistence of his own, and having no worldly aspirations, he can never be cheated anywhere. In this way, if the faith is genuine, and God recognizes that the person’s salvation is possible through faith in this saint, then he will make that faith firm and unshakable.
If he is not a saint, and on having faith in him, there is the possibility of it being detrimental to the aspirant, then God will shift the aspirant’s faith and trust somewhere else. Because even if an aspirant does not know, but God knows both the saint and the aspirant, and unknowingly too, it is God’s Nature to see to the eternal well-being of all. Therefore in both states his salvation is a certainty, since he has complete trust and faith in God that “God will definitely make me attain salvation.”
(to be continued…….)
From “Jeevan ka Kartavya” in Hindi, by Swami Ramsukhdasji.