Learn to receive

Baba says, ‘some children have developed the habit of making something that is easy difficult. The sanskars of working hard compel them to experience something easy to be difficult.’

Baba’s inheritance to me is liberation-in-life. To be liberated means to be free and relaxed. It’s a feeling of being completely comfortable, relaxed, easy. It doesn’t mean that there won’t be storms or circumstances or people, rather it means that I am relaxed and at peace in the midst of the storm. I still have the responsibilities, but I don’t experience the weight of them. The circumstance or the person is not holding me hostage, I am facing whatever I have to while being free.

That kind of freedom can only come when I am deeply rooted in who I am and Whose I am. If my identity and sense of belonging are not rock solid, then even when a little thing comes, I shake. Baba says, ‘even a tiny ant is able to make a maharathi (an elephant) unconscious.‘ To become unconscious is to fall from my elevated stage of being liberated-in-life. God gives the same teaching to all, He offers the same sustenance at the same time to every one but I become numberwise based on the extent to which I receive what He is giving me. He is my Father, Teacher and Satguru all in one and I am sustained by all three relationships but do I receive it, do I experience it?

Intellectually, I’d say ‘yes, I do know that I am being sustained by God, I know that He loves me’ but in reality, I still struggle with it, I haven’t quite accepted it deeply in my bones. I still behave according to the sanskars of bhakti that I’ve carried with me for half a cycle and try to earn or deserve God’s love. I subconsciously picture God as someone with a clipboard and pen constantly watching me and keeping an account of my performance – ‘I asked them to be sweet and kind today, let’s see how well they’re doing. Uh-oh, you got that wrong…., no, you’re not supposed to be doing that…’ I think every time I do something right, He is pleased and loves me, and each time I mess up, He’s disappointed and rejects me. And so I work hard all day to try to please Him, win points and earn His love. In doing so, I reduce God to an iron-aged human-being!

God loves me un-conditionally– not if this or that- He loves me all day, every day, for no other reason than because I am His child. If I’d realize this, then I wouldn’t live life in comparisons, in competition, I wouldn’t be afraid of making mistakes and afraid to admit my weaknesses. But I do and I am. And the only reason is because I still haven’t recognized myself and God’s love for me. I don’t earn God’s love or what He gives me, I simply receive it by faith, knowing fully well that I don’t deserve it. If I think I deserve it, or think I’m going to prove to God that I ‘deserve’ to be blessed then I have a bigger problem! ‘I am the Lord of the Poor‘, says Baba. He comes for the humble, not the haughty or proud.

And so when I get in trouble, or make a mistake, when I think God loves me conditionally, I think He won’t help me because I made the mess, so He’s not responsible. I think He just must be so disappointed with me. On the contrary, God is already there before I mess up, before I fall to pick me up. That is His love for me! He doesn’t sit up there, look at me fall and then check His clipboard to see if I’ve been performing well enough to decide if He should help me or not. That is not God! He is the Ocean of Love, my Father! He can’t bear to see His children in pain. This of course doesn’t mean He won’t confront me on the things I need to do better at like a parent would, it doesn’t mean that He won’t discipline me when needed. But it has nothing to do with how much He loves me. Let me learn to separate my who from my do.

Let me stop being so uptight in my relationship with God and learn to enjoy Him and allow Him to enjoy me. Yes, I need to remember that He is God but that doesn’t mean that I have to be afraid of Him, instead, it means that I have an honest heart turned toward Him, that I would rather do anything than to offend Him. I don’t try to earn or buy His love with my perfect behavior or my accomplishments. If I really know the love of God and have it deeply rooted and embedded in me, then I begin to pay attention to constant improvement in my life, but not to get God to love me, but because He loves me, because I think He’s awesome and He inspires me to be like Him. It’s all about the right perspective. God is my life, He is my world and so I need to be able to hang out with Him without being afraid or guilty or trying to impress Him. I just need to learn to be with Him, comfortable, with my Father, my Companion.

Do you remember when you and I first met?‘, asks Baba. When Baba found me, I had zero self-respect, a full bag of sins, and was at the end of myself. And when He said: ‘I am your Father’, I accepted it, I said: ‘My Baba’ and fell into His embrace. I couldn’t have earned that acceptance then even if I’d tried, so why am I trying now? He didn’t adopt me on the condition that I pay Him back. Let me let go of this bhakti sanskar of thinking of myself as a lowly sinner that needs to purify myself to be acceptable to God. I can’t do it even if I tried…that’s why I called out to Him! He is the Purifier, He is here to purify me. And He is doing it not to make me acceptable to Him, He already approves me and accepts me fully. He is purifying me so that I can be restored in every area of my life, He is teaching me to take back every thing that Ravan stole from me.

Unless I feel completely and un-conditionally loved by God, I will struggle on my journey and it will affect my relationships with other people. As long as I believe His love is conditional, then I won’t consider myself valuable or lovable. As a consequence of that, I don’t trust people who say they love me – I suspect their motives or think they just don’t know me well enough. So I try to deflect it, and reject them before they can reject me which I believe is a certainty. I use the world standards – money, status, appearances to prove myself as valuable to myself and others. I look for constant feedback to prove to myself and others that I am lovable, that I am okay. I need a fresh load of compliments every day to feel good about myself: ‘I worked so hard on this project, and no one appreciated it’, ‘I spent all day cleaning the house and you walked in and didn’t even notice’. I constantly pressure the people in my life to keep me fixed all the time, driving them crazy trying to get them to make me feel loved. I look at others and wish I had their life, their looks, their talent- then, ‘I too would be valuable’. It’s an endless list of complications that all happen simply because I don’t have that foundation of who and Whose.

Baba’s blessing is: “May you always have the fortune of happiness. May you always remain happy. May you always remain healthy with the nourishment of happiness! May you always be full with the treasures of happiness!” I need to live my life full of zeal and enthusiasm, full of happiness knowing that I am God’s child, that’s where I get my worth and value from. I am liberated from all the shackles, from all comparisons, insecurities, from laboring, from having to prove myself…now and forever. Having found the Father, I have attained everything. Now, I just get to enjoy myself, enjoy Him and enjoy this life with Him irrespective of whatever else might be happening or not happening. It’s the liberation I always wanted, my Father has given it to me now as inheritance. Let me receive.

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