“How to have faith?”
“I don’t know how to do that since I don’t want to go through the conventional methods!”Edwin questioned.
I don’t know what I am looking for. But I know I am looking for something and I don’t know what it is. Sometimes I sit all by myself and hope I can solve this mystery. I don’t want to ask my parents or my parish priests. They will surely not empathize with me but will give me their take on god or faith. I wish I can search and find some answers. But where can I look or research? Some people told me to read the Bible or some other holy book but I am not seeking that. I may not understand it too.
These are few of the confusing things that comes to the minds of people. These are the seekers of truth and they need to be given what they are seeking.
Let’s begin the journey now. First and foremost these beautiful people need not keep things next to them which they cannot trust or believe in. Which means they should sieve out or eliminate all those things that are making them repulse from finding that something. Maybe it’s a holy book or an idol or even some piece of so called holy stuff which they cannot stand it. Isn’t that what a person does? Keeps away from those people or things that irritate or trouble him?
Next let’s see how his mind works. If we keep three bottles of soft drink in front of him, he chooses that which he prefers and knows which his palate likes. He makes a determined choice. That is based on his likes and dislikes. Taste and color or whatever he likes. Which means he uses his senses and mind to make the right choices. So why is he not able to decide whereas god or faith is concerned? The answer lies in the unseen and unmanifest God that no one has experienced about. How can he believe in something which cannot be proved by normal human perceptions? There are no precedents or proofs of such sightings or experiences in his family or closer circles. They all talk about some vague stuff and have no answers for his inquisitive mind. So how will his belief set in some impossible object?
He needs to begin his journey by asking himself- what does he actually believe in? You will find he has no faith in his parents or society too. But he may or may not believe in his own abilities. Whenever a person has low self esteem, he derides himself but if he believes in his own abilities then he has faith in his own self. So he has to believe in something first. It could be his own self or some mentor.
So what does he believe himself about? Does he know who he is or what he is? Therein begins the journey towards self discovery. When you believe in your own being and self, you have crossed the first step towards this goal. Then his firmness in belief has to be established. In times of extreme stress or troubles, does he break down? If not, then the next hurdle is crossed. You gotta have the firmest belief in your own self. Any kind of doubt will fail you.
Sages like Nisargadatta used to talk about knowing thyself first. The book “I am That” is a primer on self discovery. I am not promoting that book here but drawing your attention towards the fact that you first need to respect yourself more than anyone else.
Think about the soft drinks I mentioned about. All are colored waters with essence and fizz, so what makes the difference to that man? You may mix up colors or taste but if you have the ability to decide on the drinks, don’t you think that the decisions or tastes are inside of you alone. What you believe about yourself makes you decide on it. All this happens inside of you alone so why are you searching for anything outside of you? Stop this outward movement in your world. Don’t seek that answer outside. Seek it inside.
But you may not be trained to do that hence seek out an expert for the same. This expert is called the Guru. He is the expeller of darkness of ignorance. He holds your hand in your journey towards self discovery.
He will never force you with his own biased ideas about this truth. The truth is universal so he cannot have independent ideas of his own. He shows you the light and opens up the channels of that special knowledge.
Whether you call the truth as God or your own self, does not really matter. As long as you have established faith in something firmly, you will slowly and steadily move towards this truth. It’s frustrating and satisfying too. Hold hands of your guide on this discovery tour. You will surely have faith soon.
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