Baba says, ‘don’t play with dolls‘. Create your elevated fortune.
Small children play with dolls. They use their imagination and build entire stories with characters and scenes. The dolls have homes, they visit each other, have conversations, play, eat etc. Once they are tired of a particular story or game, they leave the dolls, push them away…until the next time they are in the mood to play. Then, the dolls may have different names and are part of a new story.
Bhakti is no different, says Baba.
There, worshipers play with idols. They create them, then they decorate them, worship them…and then, they drown them. And even when they worship them, they don’t know the deities they are worshiping – what makes them great, how did they become great..they worship based on blind faith. Just like children, here too there are elaborate rituals, bells, pomp, stories. No one really truly understands the meaning or significance behind any of the stories or the scriptures. They recite, ring bells, prepare and eat elaborate meals in the name of God and essentially make merry. This is ignorance, like playing a game of dolls.
Now is not the time for the fun and games of Bhakti, He says. This is the path of knowledge.
He comes to dispel the darkness of our ignorance through the light of knowledge. He reminds me of who I am, gives me His own introduction and tells me the story of the beginning, middle and end of the world Drama. And yet, I still find myself playing with dolls.
You play with the dolls of the trivial situations, He says. The situations themselves are usually nothing significant- they are self-created just like the dolls, in fact, due to the weakness of my own mind. Someone says something to me in the morning, I think nothing of it then but when I have a few minutes of free time in the evening, immediately the wheels start turning, ‘why did he say that to me?’, ‘what did he really mean?’, ‘I bet his motivation is to use me to get the work done and then he’s going to take all the credit..’, ‘I should have known better….’and it goes on. Another day, the character in my mind is different but essentially, I create stories and then play them out in my head. Some of them involve me visualizing just what I plan to tell someone the next time I see them…you know, put them in their place!
The situations are lifeless, without essence or meaning and yet, I like to create them. I create dolls of jealousy, of doubt, of imagination, of force, of bossiness; then I play the scenes out, that is, I give them life. I feel convinced they are true just like the kids who also believe their dolls are real characters. Then, I tell those around me of how I feel, why I feel it and convince them of the ‘truthfulness’ of my story. So, now that I have created the dolls and given them life, I next proceed to decorate them with memories of the past, and assumptions for the future. Then as worshipers drown their idols and as kids push them away, I too, after a while drown the dolls in the remembrance of the Father- in the waves of His knowledge by saying, ‘past is past’ or by making effort to move beyond it, by trying to shift my awareness and apply the point of knowledge.
But, He says, so much time is lost in the creation, breathing life, decoration and drowning. You waste precious time, this most elevated time of this very short Confluence age and on what…..trivial matters. Is this wise?
Well, when you think about it, none of this is the fault of the mind. The mind thinks…that’s what it’s for. And the mind cannot hold a vacuum. So the trick is to keep it busy with the things that are good for me- knowledge and remembrance.
Let me churn the knowledge- make it personal to me. Let me try to go deep into a particular point and really understand it. Knowledge opens my intellect, it refreshes me.
Other times when the mind starts to go down memory lane to that incident that happened 10 years ago and starts to bring up ‘what he said and she said’, let me redirect it on a different journey- the journey of remembrance. Let me remember what Baba said to me this morning, let me remember all my experiences with Him. When I remember, I relate to the One I remember. Let me relate to Him as my Father, my Teacher, my Friend, my Companion, my Beloved. ‘Speak to Me sweetly’, He says. The idea is not to tie the mind down in a forceful way by trying to stop all thought. That doesn’t work because I’m going against what it is meant to do. I cannot ask the Sun to stop shining, it’s what it does but I can direct it’s light to the right place. Same with the mind, it isn’t about stopping thought as much as directing it.
Every point of knowledge that is realized, every second spent in remembrance is worth multi-millions, He says. Why? because it brings transformation by dispeling the ignorance and igniting the lamp of the soul. And when I am lit brightly, it attracts others to the Flame. That is service, that is me fulfilling my purpose of world transformation through self transformation.
I play with dolls when I forget who I am and my purpose, when I forget my elevated destiny and the short time I have to reach it. ‘Remember who you are and your story- the beginning, middle and end of it‘, He says. This should constantly be in your intellect. Then, I will know that this is not the time to play with dolls. This is the time to create my fortune.