Thank you for your answer on the highest virtues, Jayadev. Your answer is helpful and makes a lot of sense to me.
May I request that you elaborate a little more on the concept of Love for God.There are certain people who love God but not aware of all virtues. Also what does being true to one's self mean, and how is it a virtue? I do agree with simplicity, self-sacrifice, and truth, but honour of what?
About love for God: God watches the heart, Yogananda said. It is the heart’s intention that counts. I don’t think we need to perfect all virtues to reach God. Perfection is not of this world. Yogananda once said, “Never count your faults. Just see that your love for God is deeply sincere. For God doesn’t mind your imperfections: He minds your indifference.” (From The Essence of Self-Realization). So this is why loving God is the virtue Nr.1. In Jesus’ words: “Wherefore I say unto thee, her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little.” (Luke 7:47)
Being true to oneself means coming from one’s own inner origin. In this sense Swami Kriyananda taught Ananda-members to be “original”, even if it means that they are are excentrical, different from others. Just be yourself, but let it be your higher Self.
We are all different, and have different paths to follow. If for example you are a more intellectually oriented person, you should be true to yourself and work with that strength: discriminate, study, analyze, work on self-transformation. If you are a person of the heart, you should again be true to that, and work on devotion, loving, inspiration etc. If you are an active person, you work with that strength. This is why Yogananda says in the Autobiography of a Yogi: “With wise discernment the guru (Lahiri Mahasaya) guided his followers into the paths of Bhakti (devotion), Karma (action), Jnana (wisdom), or Raja (royal or complete) Yogas, according to each man’s natural tendencies.”
About the virtue of honor… I can only guess what Yogananda meant – I think honor of character: being noble, living with high ideals, for example honesty, purity in mind, selfless intention. Loyalty, and standing up for one’s belief and ideals, I think , has also to do with honor.
God bless you, in divine friendship, jayadev