Our present state is a state of Ignorance which has put a veil upon our own deeper truth. The result is a striving and struggling consciousness. Since we do not know the Divine and know not even whether He exists or not, yet driven by an innate and intuitive sense of the Divine Presence within, we make various kinds of effort seeking for the Glory that is always hidden within us.
Without the Divine life is a painful illusion
But meanwhile all is a shadow cast by a dream
And to the musing and immobile spirit
Life and himself don the aspect of a myth,
The burden of a long unmeaning tale.
When we look at life as it is today, especially with the distorting lens of ignorance and without the Grace and great privilege of knowing that the Divine exists, then, to any sensitive person, the appearances of life present seem like a frightful nightmare. What we need is to wake up to the wonderful Divine Presence within and in the world, and it would fill us with Joy and Peace and Beauty and Love. Instead we try various means of escape from this nightmare, from seeking after momentary pleasures to the ascetic’s withdrawal from life itself. But the true remedy is something else. It is to find the Divine, which alone gives value to life and is the source of all peace and joy and beauty and bliss.
The key is hid
For the key is hid and by the Inconscient kept;
The secret God beneath the threshold dwells.
The key to this Divine Mystery is within us. It has been given to us. But we have lost it. The Inconscient has covered it with a thick veil of ignorance and our normal waking awareness has no access to it. This is the real cause of our suffering and incapacity and evil and pain.
The nameless Resident
In a body obscuring the immortal Spirit
A nameless Resident vesting unseen powers
With Matter’s shapes and motives beyond thought
And the hazard of an unguessed consequence,
An omnipotent indiscernible Influence,
He sits, unfelt by the form in which he lives
And veils his knowledge by the groping mind.
The Divine Presence dwells within our body, hidden by the obscure cloak of Matter, that obscures Its knowledge and power and robs our life of its real meaning and purpose. He sits unseen, unfelt by the Mind struggling with its Ignorance.
The search for a Wisdom that is hid deep within
A wanderer in a world his thoughts have made,
He turns in a chiaroscuro of error and truth
To find a wisdom that on high is his.
The truth, that our souls carry within, has been lost by the Mind. We try to find it again by thought, but it only shows us partial and divided and distorted reflections of Reality, thereby creating always a mixture of Truth and error. Yet the wisdom we seek by wandering in the maze of truth is already there within us, on the intuitive and luminous peaks of Nature where we can ascend.
The human journey in the night of ignorance
As one forgetting he searches for himself;
As if he had lost an inner light he seeks:
As a sojourner lingering amid alien scenes
He journeys to a home he knows no more.
We have forgotten who we are and why we are here. We have forgotten our goal and the Path we must take to reconnect and reach our own Home. We have lost the inner light and are trapped amid passing scenes and changing appearances. Thus we keep moving through life without the true light to Guide, stumbling upon one door after another, but not at the one door passing through which we can discover the marvel hidden deep in us.
It is the Divine who has assumed this state for the play
His own self’s truth he seeks who is the Truth;
He is the Player who became the play,
He is the Thinker who became the thought;
He is the many who was the silent One.
The highest Self of man is one with the Universal Self. Not knowing this he is lost and bewildered in the forest of Nature, unable to comprehend her vast and mysterious play. But still, even amidst all this error and evil and pain our deepest truth, our inmost Self is the Divine Self. It is He who has become this play of Ignorance, where each soul, though a portion of the Illimitable, yet struggles with countless limitations and its consequent suffering.
The thousandfold enigma
In the symbol figures of the cosmic Force
And in her living and inanimate signs
And in her complex tracery of events
He explores the ceaseless miracle of himself,
Till the thousandfold enigma has been solved
In the single light of an all-witnessing Soul.
It is through the myriad play of Nature that man discovers himself. It is by solving the puzzle of life and creation that he comes nearer to himself, until he discovers the One Self of which all else is a reflection.
Ignorance too is a mask of the Divine that He wears upon Himself for the play of multiplicity. The individual soul must go through it, until, growing from depth to depth of its own being, it discovers that We are That and that our individual Self and the Universal Self are one.