12. Inquire of the inmost, the one, of its final secret,
which it holds for you through the ages.
The great and difficult victory,
the conquering of the desires of the individual soul, is a work of ages;
therefore expect not to obtain its reward
until ages of experience have been accumulated.
When the time of learning
this twelfth rule is reached,
man is on the threshold of becoming more than man.
The knowledge which is now yours
is only yours because your soul has become one
with all pure souls and with the inmost.
It is a trust vested in you by the most high.
Betray it, misuse your knowledge, or neglect it,
and it is possible even now for you to fall
from the high estate you have attained.
Great ones fall back, even from the threshold,
unable to sustain the weight of their responsibility,
unable to pass on.
Therefore look forward always
with awe and trembling to this moment,
and be prepared for the battle.
Before we take up the sutra, two small questions:
Someone is asking why Meera did not die even after drinking poison. What sort of devotion did she have, what sort of love? A similar thing is said about Prahlad: that he could not be burned by fire. But how is it then that Socrates died after consuming poison, and why was Jesus not saved on the cross?
It will be useful to understand a few things. One: never ever make the mistake of comparing two enlightened people, because no one is a replica of someone else. A person like Jesus never existed before and will never be born again. A person like Meera will also never be born again. Socrates is unique, and so is Prahlad. But our minds have this trivial habit of comparing. Since they are not replicas of each other, their individualities, the way they flow and the way they live and die will be different from one another.
Meera did not die after consuming poison because no poison could enter into the rapturous state in which she was living. In the deepest state of love, poison cannot enter, poison will not be able to enter the body. The path of Meera is the path of love – and love is an antidote for poison.
If you are too full of love, poison will not be able to enter your bloodstream. For poison to enter there already needs to be some poison in your bloodstream. Like begets like. If you are full of anger, poison can very quickly and easily enter your bloodstream, because anger activates the poison glands within you. Poison is already present there.
All of us are full of anger and hatred, so poison is already present in our bloodstream. Because of this inner poison, outer poison is able to enter the body. If there is no trace of something already inside you, then it cannot enter your body.