The Cosmic Riddle, p. 337

Opening Remarks
Man is here to solve the cosmic riddle created by the play of opposites.

Strange antinomy
A strange antinomy is his nature’s rule.

Man’s nature is full of contradictions. His life is as if governed by contradictory wills which pull him in different directions.

Riddle of opposites
A riddle of opposites is made his field:
Freedom he asks but needs to live in bonds,
He has need of darkness to perceive some light
And need of grief to feel a little bliss;
He has need of death to find a greater life.

His being is a field of opposites. He asks for freedom but needs to live in bonds and attachments of all kinds. He needs to live in darkness to perceive some light. It is only when he has gone through grief that he values joy. He must die to his small and narrow egoistic self to find a greater life.

He has no certain light
All sides he sees and turns to every call;
He has no certain light by which to walk;
His life is a blind-man’s-buff, a hide-and-seek;
He seeks himself and from himself he runs;
Meeting himself, he thinks it other than he.

In the absence of a clear guiding light he turns to every call and walks as a blind man not knowing where he is going. Playing hide and seek with himself he, he meets his true self and then again runs away from it or else thinks that it is something or someone else, other than he. All this continues and he is pulled in all kinds of directions until he has found his soul and organised his life around it.

His life he cannot save
Always he builds, but finds no constant ground,
Always he journeys, but nowhere arrives;
He would guide the world, himself he cannot guide;
He would save his soul, his life he cannot save.

He builds all this theories and systems of knowledge on shifting sands of life. He journeys always but knows not where to go and what is the goal or purpose of his journey. Though he claims to have knowledge to guide the world he is unable to guide himself. Even when he can save his soul he cannot save his life. Such is the unhappy riddle of human life.

His mind has lost the soul’s light
The light his soul had brought his mind has lost;
All he has learned is soon again in doubt;
A sun to him seems the shadow of his thoughts,
Then all is shadow again and nothing true:
Unknowing what he does or whither he tends
He fabricates signs of the Real in Ignorance.

His soul has the light to guide him correctly but driven by the mind he has lost this light and is unable to perceive it. All his learning ends in a doubt. Yet his mind is satisfied playing with the shadow of truth which he takes for truth itself. Then all collapses back into ignorance again. He discovers and devices a system of symbols and mistakes them for reality not knowing what they truly represent.

Mortal error to Truth’s star
He has hitched his mortal error to Truth’s star.

He has locked his errors to some far-off star of Truth to help him navigate through life. It means that a big gap and distance exists between his life and the Truth that can guide him.

Closing Remarks
This is unfortunately the state of man as long as he is driven by desire and the ego-self with the mind as his highest guide other than his inmost soul.

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