Discouragement in the Spiritual Life


Jai Guru!

It was October 11 I enrolled in the YSS Self Realization lessons. I am a kidney transplant patient. I am not regular in practice. I feel I am not able to perform the techniques correctly. My mind keeps thinking of all nonsense things. I get upset I am not able to develop love for God Guru. Kindly help me.

—ruma nath, India


Dear Ruma Nath,

It is common for the mind to think of nonsense things when we try to meditate. That is due to (a) habit, (b) concentration not yet well developed, and (c) resistance of the ego to meditation (so it sends distractions of thought). Do not be discouraged. Every time you find your mind wandering, bring it back to your practice. This happens for everyone, but persistence will make it happen less and less. (Here is a blog that I recently wrote about overcoming the tendency of the mind to wander in meditation.)

Also, the very fact that you are upset about not having developed love for God and Guru tells me that such love is already inside you. It might not take the form that you expect it to, and it might not be as strong as you want it to be (and as it eventually will be), but it is there. Just keep your longing alive—that will carry you far. Strive to increase it, and pray for devotion; Paramhansaji recommended that!

Paramhansaji also said that discouragement is the greatest tool of the darkness. It may seem as though it comes from within you, but it really does not. Do not give it a home in your heart—not even for a moment. You cannot afford it. Turn to the light. Turn to the guru.