Lack of Faith

Question

Aum Guru

I purchased Ananda Course part I & II, 5 months back & practice EE & meditation regularly. I want to take discipleship & kriya intiation.

1.I suffer from lack of faith. Its as if, there is always a small voice telling me 'what if all this is false?'. Please help me anchor my faith once & for all.

2. I am no longer attached to worldy pleasures. I am in an awkard state where I am unable to go deep in meditation & get joy. So life is very mundane. The routine is killing me. Help

—Neena, U.A.E

Answer

Neena, I applaud your self-awareness and self-honesty in posing these questions. Those two qualities, plus the sincerity you show through your regular meditation and Energization, have put you on a sure course for answering them. Discipleship and Kriya will secure you on-and take you deeper into-that course. Congratulations. You’re absolutely on track.

You are experiencing what every sincere devotee goes through. It is so universal that there’s an entire scripture based on it: the Bhagavad Gita, in which Arjuna plays the part of the average devotee (you, in this case). At the beginning of the Gita, he complains to Sri Krishna (who represents God, guru, soul intuition): “Krishna, I’ve let go of the things of this world, but I don’t yet have anything better to replace them. I know they’re ephemeral, but they were the only joys I had, and now I have nothing. I haven’t experienced the greater joy that you say comes from deep meditation and the inner life. [And he would have added exactly what you said, Neena:] Life is very mundane. The routine is killing me. Help.” I strongly, strongly recommend that you read The Essence of the Bhagavad Gita. It will answer your questions simply and fully.

For now, I’ll say just a few things: First, there are 3 options in life: (1) look for joy outside of yourself, (2) look for joy within you, or (3) don’t look for joy at all. You’ve already crossed #1 off your list. #3 obviously doesn’t appeal to you, either. So there (or rather, here) you are: #2 is your only option. Great. We love certainty, don’t we?

Therefore just tell that “small voice” in your mind to be patient, and not to worry, that you are conducting an experiment, that’s all. The only way to know for sure that the spiritual teachings are valid is to test them in your daily life. All the insights and techniques in the Ananda Course will help you do that if you practice them. Slowly but surely-yes, it does take time-you will see via your own experience that the teachings are valid. Others can teach you, but the only way you can truly know anything is to experience it. Then only can your faith be anchored.

Second, here’s another aid in anchoring your faith: the testimonies of many, many great spiritual figures of all religions through the ages, who unanimously tell us that the spiritual route is the only way to lasting happiness. That, of course, cannot give you faith, but certainly it should make you feel more confident that you’re conducting the right experiment.

Third, it is absolutely imperative that you find satsang (spiritual companionship, others who are seeking what you are seeking). This world, with all its emphasis on worldly pleasures, fame, power, wealth, etc., will pull you in the exact opposite direction. It takes tremendous spiritual strength to oppose that pull all on your own, as it can seep into your life in the subtlest, most insidious ways. So seek spiritual fellowship; such people are everywhere.

Fourth, until you find such people where you are, frequently visit Ananda’s websites; they are incredible sources of support. Ananda has centers in India, USA, and Europe; go to one of them. Soon. Spend time with others who have been in your position. Learn from them, and more important, absorb their vibrations. This will give you immeasurable support.

Fifth, and most important, ask God for help. Pray to Yogananda for guidance, inspiration, and support. Don’t try to do it all yourself; it won’t work. And besides, isn’t everything more enjoyable with a partner?

You are doing very, very well. Keep it up. And instead of looking for joy from the spiritual life, try putting joy into your spiritual life – into your meditation practices, your work, your interactions with others, everything. Every little bit of joy you can scrape together, put it into what you do. You might be surprised at what will happen.

Blessings,

Gyandev