Chapter 14: Ripening the Meditator on the Path
In one of your previous discourses you said that a sudden and direct descent of grace can sometimes become a disaster. The individual might be harmed or become mad or he may even die. A question naturally arises: Is grace not always beneficial? Does grace not keep its own equilibrium? The danger can also be due to the fact that the recipient is unfit. In that case, how can grace descend on an unqualified person?
God is not a person but an energy. This implies that energy has no considerations for individuals. Whatsoever happens to each individual happens impartially.
For example, the tree on a riverbank receives its nutrition from the passing current; it will bear flowers and fruits and will grow tall and strong. But another tree that falls into the same current will be carried away with the swift tide. Now the river has nothing to do with either of these trees. Neither is it interested in feeding the former nor in destroying the latter. The river just flows. The river is a flowing energy, it is not a person.
We have always made the mistake of looking upon God as a person. Therefore, all our thinking about God is as if he were a person. We say he is very kind; we say he is merciful; we say he always blesses us. These are our expectations and desires that we impose upon the ultimate. We can impose our expectations on a person and if they are not fulfilled we make that person responsible for it, but we cannot do this to energy. So whenever we deal with energy as if it is a person, we are bound to go off track, because then we are lost in dreams. If we deal with energy the results will be entirely different.
For instance, consider the force of gravity: you are able to walk on the earth because of this force, but this force is not specially created to make you walk. Don’t think mistakenly that if you don’t walk, gravity will not exist. It was there when you were not on the earth and it will be there even after you are gone. If you walk in the wrong manner you might fall and break your legs. This will also be due to gravity, but for this you will not be able to sue anyone as there is no person to blame. Gravity is a current of energy. You have to be careful about its laws of action if you want to deal with it. But it does not think at all about how to deal with you.
God’s energy does not work out of consideration for anyone. In fact, it is not proper to say, “God’s energy,” rather we should say, “God is energy.” Existence does not consider how to behave with you; it has its own eternal law and this eternal law is religion. Religion means the laws of behavior of the energy that is existence.
If you behave with discrimination, understanding and in conformity with this energy, it becomes grace for you - not on its own, but because of you. If you do the opposite, if you go against the laws of energy, it does not yield its grace towards you. In this case God is not ungraceful; it is so because of you.