Man the Seed of God (2)
Man the seed of God - it is in this secret that man finds the key that has been lost. This loss shows why the religions of the world seem to be losing their hold upon people, in the Eastern part of the world as well as in the West. Why is there an increasing number of ungodly? Why is materialism ever on the increase? The answer is that man has lost the key which opens the secret of life. It is God who is the key to this secret. During my travellings of some years throughout the Western world I found in every part of the civilized world people getting tired not only of religion but also of belief in God. It seems that the deity's name is repellent to an advanced thinker. He thinks that this is something which was a creed of the past: "The ancient people who did not know life better had some certain idea and now we are too advanced to hold on to the ideas of the past". Very few admit it and many will not say it, but almost all know it. In the East perhaps it is different, but the whole world moves on in the same direction. If the direction of humanity is a material one then the whole world goes in this material direction; if it is a spiritual direction naturally the whole world must go in the spiritual direction.
In spite of all material progress which has raised the value of civilization so high in the eyes of the new generation, it could not keep to its pedestal; it fell down during the war. It has made the thinking world ;consider, at least for a moment, that the civilization it had thought to be the best has not proved to be the best. No just person, a person with some thought, will deny the fact after having reflected upon it. If we ask ourselves, "Has the world advanced?", no doubt the answer will be, "Yes". The new inventions which have brought about the miraculous phenomena` that have brought all countries closer in communication by telegraphy, telephone and wireless all show that humanity has progressed - but only progressed in a certain direction, a progress which cannot bring all satisfaction. It can only bring outer happiness and pleasure, but the inner happiness remains to be found. It might seem to be the saying of a simple believer that in belief in God is the remedy of all diseases, but I should declare that even the wisest person can claim the same after having arrived at a certain realization of life's secret.
Now coming to our subject "Man the Seed of God". If we ask ourselves what is the definition of the seed, we find that the seed is not only the beginning of the plant, but the seed is the end of the plant's destiny too, because the plant is meant to bring out the seed. When we consider the whole manifestation as a plant then in all the different grades in which it has manifested we find that the final thing was the bringing out of man. One may say in connection with a plant that the stem sprung up first, then the leaves, then came the flower, and from the flower came the seed. One may say the same thing in connection with the whole manifestation: there was the mineral, then the vegetable, then the animal, but in the end it finished in man.
Scientists today say to have discovered that human life comes from the animal life, but hundreds of years earlier, in the scriptures of Persia, we can find statements which give the proof of them having known this idea. What does this idea tell us? It tells us that this whole creation was intended to* bring about a certain purpose, one purpose. But because every man is not capable of understanding this purpose this incapability brings about life's catastrophes. If a majority understands the purpose then the minority follows, but if those who know the purpose are in minority then the majority may have their thought.
If I were to explain the picture of the material conditions of the world which directed man to such occupations as war and disasters and bloodshed, besides the hatred between nations and races, one would understand that these all come from the lack of understanding of that one secret. Knowing this the great souls like Buddha and Krishna have all tried their utmost to explain it. For instance in the Lord's Prayer one reads, "Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven". If only one could understand the meaning behind these words! It is the whole of philosophy, for it makes one know and understand that this only means that, if every man has his purpose separate from that of another, there will always be lack of order and peace, both outwardly and inwardly. Why do wars come? Why do differences arise? Because of the differences of purpose. When nations have their different purpose, when every individual has his different purpose then there will be no unity. At the same time it is unnatural too, for the purpose of every tree is to bring about the seed, and so the purpose of all nations and of each individual - the final purpose - is to bring about that seed which is the source of this whole manifestation.
It is not the trees which have declared God, nor the mountains; neither have the birds taught the gospel, nor the animals preached religion. If ever this has been taught, if ever God has been brought to the idea of mankind, it has been brought by man. It is not only one man's right, but it is the right of everyone to bring about that source, the source out of which all has come. Do not think that I mean by this that one must not carry out one's occupations in life. What I mean is that one must think with every occupation, everything one does, that the finishing of it is not the only aim. Man's aim is to bring forth in his life that seed which is the source of his whole life.
The modern psychologist says, "Well, any idea like this is acquired". It must however be remembered that teaching has made this idea clear, but the God-ideal is the inborn tendency of man. The best explanation of the word God is to be found in the Persian word Khuda, because this is not only a name, but it is the meaning of the idea: it means self-revealing. This itself shows that, if God is self-revealing, then man is not always depending upon the teaching of another; his natural longing is for God.
Very often I have met people without belief in God, but I have always found that there is some craving behind. In spite of their denying it the craving is there all the same. Besides this, man by nature is vain and once his vanity has taken up the idea of disbelief it is very difficult to make his vanity believe what his soul craves for. A person sometimes feels proud to think, "I do not believe as everybody believes, because I am more intelligent and I am different from others". At the same time many among those who all their life denied the idea of God, after having a kind of sorrow, a heartbreak, a disappointment, or after having gone through life, in the end have begun to search for something somewhere. I was much interested to see how a great materialistic scientist often depended upon his wife who was a believer in the God-ideal. She was a kind of healing during his illnesses, and during his fits of depression she was a consolation. Whenever she said, "You do not believe in God, so how can you be happy?", his answer was, "But you believe in God and I believe in you; so that is the same ".
By this I do not mean that belief in God is sufficient for our lives. Belief in God is only a first step; it is the first step towards the accomplishment of the purpose for which this whole universe is formed. If a person with his belief in God is content - there are millions and millions who believe in God and who are not all saints, nor are they the best of people. One may find perhaps among those who seem to be unbelievers more true and just people than among those who have such belief. Nevertheless, for a thinker, for a wise person, the God-ideal is the key to life's secret. The person who only stands on his belief is like a man standing on a step instead of walking on the staircase. But the person who climbs the stairs is the one who is reaching to a realization which can only come by belief in God. Therefore there are many people whose feet are, so to speak, stuck in the path of truth. Neither are they in the world nor in heaven; they become stuck in their belief and do not move from there.
The first thing we have to learn by belief in God is to know the source. As soon as we know the source we begin to feel differently from the average person. The difference between the person who is wise in God and the person who is worldly wise, if both happen to be good, is this: the person of the world will say, "If I do good to another it is a pleasure for me and the other one will learn to do good too". But the man who is wise in God will say, "When I do good to that person it means that I am doing good to myself". This makes a great difference, for when a person realizes the source he becomes one with another, and when he does not meet with another in the realization of that source then another person is another. There are two ideas in this: there is an idea of unity and there is an idea of duality. The idea of unity comes from the realization of God which is the ultimate truth. The idea of duality comes from the absence of this knowledge, and if one has not attained, through the idea of God, that idea of unity, one's realization is not complete. If one has belief in God, but has not arrived at the idea of unity, one has not accomplished the purpose of life.
Therefore the destination of the Sufi movement is to serve humanity towards this end. It is not a new religion, it is not a certain cast or creed. It is only awakening people of all different religions or of no religion to the divine ideal; to awaken humanity to the understanding of truth, which is to be learned by the understanding of God - especially after such a time as humanity has gone through, while the hatred that exists in the heart of men for one another is ever on the increase. People know about different diseases, but they do not know that the worst-disease of the world is the disease of the heart, and it seems that this plague is vastly spreading: the bitterness in the heart. If one could only think what psychological effect the thought of prejudice, of hatred, of bitterness has on man! It is not only outward reasons that make persons ill, but a great many illnesses come from inner reasons. To take in bitterness and to keep it in the heart is worse than keeping a drop of poison in the body.
Now the time has come that humanity, after its contemplation on material gain, must contemplate on another gain. Material gains are taken away in a moment's time and leave man in his grave alone without any of them. This earth has not even kept the wealth of the Pharaos, so near to their heart; after so many years the wealth which was buried with them has been taken from them. It shows that this world has never allowed anyone to have his belongings for ever. It is a disappointing world; the true consolation of man does not belong to the earth or its knowledge. This does not mean that the knowledge of the world is useless, but the knowledge of the world does not suffice the whole purpose of life. There is only one thing from which true satisfaction can come, and that is the knowledge of the deeper side of life, the knowledge of the source and goal of all things. It is the realization of that knowledge which can be called divine light, and if there is any happiness, any peace ever to be found, it is in this; in the absence of it all the good that the earth can offer will not suffice man's life's purpose. Whether a man is young or old, whether he is wise or not, every person's life has a need of spiritual guidance, and the only object that man has to accomplish today is to become acquainted with his own self by knowledge of himself in belief in God.