The heart is said to be the altar of God. It is the temple of God and also the play ground of God.
In Gita the Lord says,
Eswara sarva bhutanam hriddeserjuna tishtathi – O Arjuna , God resides in the heart of every being.
Having said this in the second line of the verse He continues to say,
Bhramayan sarva bhutanam yantrarudhani mayaya – His maya deludes them into going around like one mounted on a machine.
The problem comes in understanding the second line. Why does the Lord delude us with his Maya? It is true that both the good and bad come from God from the absolute point of view.
If we look at the creation as a family, with God as the mother and the father – should the creation be one of misery or of joy? Upanishad avers,
Anandatikhalu imani bhutani jayante………………
Creation is born of bliss and it merges into bliss.
In spite of this blissful creation why is there misery in creation and why are we deluded? Misery is our own perception and confusion. Through our ignorance we have created our own misery.
Just like a mother gives the child toys to play with, the child accepts the toy and the mother lets him play – God gives us many objects. Busy with the pleasure of the objects we forget God. But when the child drops the toy and runs to the mother to hold on to the mother the child owns the mother.
Satan tried to tempt even Jesus; but Jesus could rise above the temptation as he was anchored in the Lord and god consciousness.
Heart is the play ground of God. When we are peaceful and in joy we do not make mistakes but when we are angry, upset, reactive and judgmental we make mistakes. Transformation comes from our own heart.
It is said those who are pure in heart can commune with God. The heart is the place of emotion. This emotion can be transformed into devotion or pure love for God.
Blessed are the pure in heart for they can see God.
He did not use the word realize he said they can see God. You can talk to God face to face. “As you talk to a man or a friend God was talking” Exodus (Ch 35 verse 11). This is not imagination this is the declaration of the scripture. You can see God and talk to God if you have that pure love and devotion.
Now the question arises,
Can the formless God assume a human form? – Yes, that is possible.
Just like the invisible vapor can be made visible as water and it can be made tangible as ice by cooling, God becomes visible through the coolness of the love of the devotee. Through this coolness of love the devotee gets the vision of God , communion with God and can see God.
Yoga sutra of Patanjali says,
yogah citta vritti nirodha – yoga is to control the thoughts.
This control of thought is to purify the heart and yoga is the means. If you are perfect in yoga there is nothing more to do.
All spiritual disciplines are for purifying the heart.
Look at your own thoughts and analyze your thoughts. Do not be unhappy if they are negative and restless. Be happy you have recognized them as such and God has given you the opportunity to look at yourself. How does one look at one self? It is said that the feel of the guru is the reflecting mirror. Look at the feet of the guru (surrender at the feel of the guru and you can see yourself.
How to purify?
Sant Kabir said God is the washer man and the disciple is the cloth. Guru has to wash, why should I be worried? I have nothing to do. It is the duty off the washer man to clean me.
Now comes the most critical question. Do you really have a guru? Have you become a disciple? If you have there is nothing to do. It is the duty of the guru. With words we say, I have a guru. In reality we have not become disciples nor have the desire to become disciples. How many really follow the guru?
The vision of God is not so easy. A mind which is like a pond with a lot of ripples – how can it reflect the sky? But there is no need to be discouraged let us try again and again. Pray to God for that purity.
(Excerpt from a talk of Baba Prajnananandaji)
Source: pg. 23-25, Vol 8, Issue 3, Jan 2010, Sthita Prajna – Established in Wisdom by Prajnana Mission.