By Steve Klein
When I read the Discourses, it seems to me that the answer to almost every problem is simply to love God. But at the same time, Baba admits that love is a gift from God to man. So I often complain to Baba that it’s all His fault; if He were to give this gift a little more often or to a greater degree, most of the world’s problems would disappear. Or, forgetting about the world’s problems, if He were to let me feel more of His love, it would be easier for me to love Him.
I suspect I am not the only one who would like to feel more of Baba’s love more often. Of course, the fact that any of us has been drawn to Baba is evidence of His love. There is an old saying to the effect that the lover’s cry of “Where are you God?” is only made in response to God’s secret whisper in your heart “Here I am.” But I’ve never understood why these things have to be so secret. As Mani used to joke, “Why do Baba’s blessings always have to be in disguise? Why can’t He give a blessing that just walks up to you and shakes your hand and lets you know it’s a blessing?”
So I do not doubt, intellectually, that Baba loves me or that it is His love for me which has prompted me to try to follow Him. But I’d sure like to experience that more directly in my day-to-day life. Which is why I enjoy going to India or Myrtle Beach and hearing stories about Baba because these tend to awaken my dormant heart to some small degree.
But I find that this is also a problem because these activities seem to be in contradistinction to my everyday life. A dichotomy is set up whereby I seem to have a choice between living my life (and feeling bereft) or “dropping out” of it for a while so I can feel Baba to a greater extent.
There is a temptation to think, “If I feel more of Baba’s love when I am in India or when I meditate, then why not spend all my time doing it?” Not only is the feeling pleasurable but also one’s mind chimes in that this would be the thing to do as well because, as Baba has reminded us, nothing is real but God and nothing matters but love for God.
And yet, Baba repeatedly emphasized that while He did not want His lovers to be of the world, He did want them to be in it.
The Mandali used to tell the story of the woman who fell so much in love with Baba that she neglected her family so she could spend all of her time in her prayer room communing with Baba internally. When Baba saw her, He gently upbraided her and told her He was happy for her love which she expressed to His pictures in her prayer room, but He felt neglected in her family in whom He also resided.
Sometimes in trying to write poetry on Baba, I have felt so inspired that I’ve gotten irritated when someone interrupted my reverie. Yet I know it is a joke to think Baba would like a poem written about His love if in the process I’m being rude to His lovers. Perhaps that is why what Baba wrote Arnavaz has stayed with me. Baba said, “I never asked you to feel Me. I asked you to love Me.”
So it seems to me, in this context, feeling Baba’s love is not our main goal. Our main goal is to express His love towards others even if trying to do so we seem to be cutting ourselves off from the source of His love. A paradox to be sure, but one which I am sure Baba enjoys.