30 May Self-seeking nature obstructs our spiritual growth
Shree Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita stated that bhakti is ‘kartum susukam’ which means “very easy to practice”. It is easy because on the path of Bhakti we don’t have to do anything. We can very naturally attain God if we learn to love Him. If we can simply put our faith in God and keep our will aligned with His will, there is nothing that can stop us from attaining the goal of God-realization in this life itself.
However there is one aspect of our nature that makes even the simple path of bhakti appear so difficult. Our nature of being self-seeking makes the wonderful journey towards God, long and arduous. It is our natural propensity to be self-seeking. In everything we do in the world, the first question we ask is, “What is in it for me”? Even when we love somebody in the world, we first see what we will get in return. Therefore even when we love in the world, we do nothing more than business.
Once we walk on the path of Divine Love, our selfish nature becomes an obstruction to our spiritual growth. Our self-seeking nature again compels us to put our own happiness before the happiness of God and Guru. But on the path of divine love, this attitude is not yielding. God waits before he bestows his grace. He waits for us to reach that point where we learn the meaning of selfless love and implement it in our every thought and action. When we love God and Guru selflessly we don’t love them for our sake, but for their sake. It is extremely rare to find such selfless love on earth, but in the spiritual realm, this is our ideal and we have to strive to achieve it.
The way we can get rid of our self-seeking nature and achieve the ideal of selfless love is by making seva bhav or service attitude as our top most priority. We should think, “How can I serve my God and Guru”? When this thought will repeatedly come to our mind, gradually it will become the paramount thought in our mind. Finally we will reach a stage where we will think, “I wish to love God and Guru for their happiness alone”. So while practicing bhakti, the attitude of service is vital. We can do seva with the mind, with the body or with our wealth.