And yet there is something we can do as an expression of our love and gratitude. She has come so close to us, nearer to us than our own selves. What we need now is to install Her forever in the temple of our hearts, so that never again shall we experience the sense of separation, that root and source of all suffering, ignorance, error and pain.
It is not enough to observe and celebrate these special days of Her arrival. Too much emphasis on the externals may well create a tendency towards turning the whole thing into a religion. That is precisely what has been happening to all the divine manifestations so far and this is precisely what They do not want.
Hard is it to persuade earth-nature’s change;
Mortality bears ill the eternal’s touch:
It fears the pure divine intolerance
Of that assault of ether and of fire;
It murmurs at its sorrowless happiness,
Almost with hate repels the light it brings;
It trembles at its naked power of Truth
And the might and sweetness of its absolute Voice.
Inflicting on the heights the abysm’s law,
It sullies with its mire heaven’s messengers:
Its thorns of fallen nature are the defence
It turns against the saviour hands of Grace;
It meets the sons of God with death and pain.
A glory of lightnings traversing the earth-scene,
Their sun-thoughts fading, darkened by ignorant minds,
Their work betrayed, their good to evil turned,
The cross their payment for the crown they gave,
Only they leave behind a splendid Name.
We can celebrate Her coming in a vital way filling the day with programs and activities, wearing beautiful dresses and decorating the various places with flowers and perfumes. All this is fine and is perhaps needed for the child soul. Even one may say that it is needed for the fullness of our adoration that cannot be complete until it includes the physical world which is the basis of all expression here in this material world.
But what is more important, the point of emphasis is to now call Her, to welcome Her in the inner chambers of our heart, to resolve to clean up our thoughts and feelings of all the dust and dross that has accumulated over the centuries. What is needed is to light up the incense of faith and the flame of aspiration and decorate the altar of our life with flowers of Devotion and Surrender, Love and Adoration, Sincerity and Purity, not to forget the gentler but much needed Gratitude and Humility. What is needed is to offer ourselves as completely as possible for Her Work and Service until all in us becomes one with Her and one with all in Her.
Though written as an invocation to the Durga aspect of the Divine Mother to come and fill India with her radiance and beauty and strength, it applies as much to the Divine Mother and Her Work in the larger arena of the world:
MOTHER DURGA! Enter our bodies in thy Yogic strength. We shall become thy instruments, thy sword slaying all evil, thy lamp dispelling all ignorance. Fulfil this yearning of thy young children, O Mother. Be the master and drive thy instrument, wield thy sword and slay the evil, hold up the lamp and spread the light of knowledge. Make thyself manifest.
MOTHER DURGA! When we possess thee, we shall no longer cast thee away; we shall bind thee to us with the tie of love and devotion. Come, Mother, manifest thyself in our mind and life and body.
Come, Revealer of the hero-path. We shall no longer cast thee away. May our entire life become a ceaseless worship of the Mother, all our acts a continuous service to the Mother, full of love, full of energy. This is our prayer, O Mother, descend upon earth, make thyself manifest in this land of India.