Grace is the Divine Power that has leaped down from the heart of the Supreme to help creation move towards its goal. In a general way this mysterious Grace supports creation from behind giving it the needed push for progress. It spreads over creation as a balm that gives Peace and Solace to our lives as we struggle in our forward march. From time to time this Grace manifests in the forefront of the collective human march, especially when creation is moving through crucial and critical phases. These manifestations of the Divine Grace are known in India as the Avataras and in a lesser way through Vibhutis who are sent by the Grace to help the human march. Personally too, in the life of an individual, the Grace intervenes on the pathways of Time either in response to an ardent prayer for intervention thereby changing the fixed course of destiny and uplifting the individual out of some seemingly impossible situation or condition in which one is caught as in a whirlpool current of life. Even when it seems that the favourable result or the desired change has come through effort of the individual or others, it is always the Grace that acts from behind pushing the various elements and forces and beings towards the coveted good.
This however does not mean that the Grace is there only to fulfil our desires. The real action of Grace, its deepest and strongest is to help us progress swiftly towards our divine goal. If to accomplish this a blow or failure in some worldly activity is needed, the Grace would take us through that door as well. It can use even darkness as an emergency passage for the struggling soul to hasten it towards the Light of a New Dawn. That is why it is said that one cannot understand the ways of Grace since It does not act according to human calculation and measures and yet, a single Fiat of this Grace can cancel birthloads of Karma surmounting inner and outer difficulties and obstacles that assail us in our journey. But this extreme action of Grace is not so common as most human beings would not be able to bear it. More commonly It acts as a Power that brings peace and solace and succour to our wounded life struggling against various worldly and other-worldly challenges. The stroke of Grace that slays to save is rarest of rare and reserved for the fortunate few who will not misunderstand Its action and keep their faith intact which is needed for growth and progress. Of course the Divine Grace prefers that we move free of all inner and outer difficulties through a safe sunlit Path rather than through strong upheavals…
You have asked how one can prepare for the Grace. Yes while it is true that the Divine Grace is unconditional and with all, still we can be open and receptive to Its action or resist It. The inner conditions are faith, sincerity, surrender and trust and confidence in the Grace and not to resist Its action through doubt distrust and depression. If one can remain quiet and open by calling the Divine Name then one has put oneself in the best conditions for the Grace to act.
Finally it is a question of building an active contact with the Grace from our side. The Grace has always leaned towards Earth and mankind and all the creatures but few respond to It. That is one of the reasons why Creation has assumed the face of so much struggle and pain instead of a spontaneous flowering at the Divine Touch. We may say that the Divine Grace is the great secret, perhaps the greatest Secret as the Gita puts it and Sri Aurobindo and the Mother confirm.
As Sri Aurobindo puts it so beautifully and powerfully:
“The more complete your faith, sincerity and surrender, the more will grace and protection be with you. And when the grace and protection of the Divine Mother are with you, what is there that can touch you or whom need you fear? A little of it even will carry you through all difficulties, obstacles and dangers; surrounded by its full presence you can go securely on your way because it is hers, careless of all menace, unaffected by any hostility however powerful, whether from this world or from worlds invisible. Its touch can turn difficulties into opportunities, failure into success and weakness into unfaltering strength. For the grace of the Divine Mother is the sanction of the Supreme and now or tomorrow its effect is sure, a thing decreed, inevitable and irresistible.”
Pondicherry, March 12, 2020