As my love
and my faith and my interest in
the inner grew, the darkness diminished,
within and without, and Lalla lost
herself in that light.
Those who are determined to practice the Way practice self-awareness and self-understanding twenty-four hours a day. They think of this and focus on this. They know that the one Great Cause is there right where they stand, that it is in sages without being augmented and in ordinary people without being diminished. They know that it stands alone free of senses and sense objects, and that it far transcends material things.
Wayfarers don’t set up fixed locations in anything they do. They are clear and tranquil, with solid concentration, and the myriad transformations never disturb them. They appear in response to conditions and go into action as they encounter events, leaving nothing incomplete.
You should just be empty and quiet, transcending everything. Once the main basis is clear, all obscurities are illuminated. “Ten thousand years — a single thought. A single thought — ten thousand years.” Passing through from the heights to the depths, the great function of the whole potential is in operation. It is like when a strong man flexes his arm: he doesn’t depend on anyone else’s strength. Then the illusory blinders of birth and death vanish forever, and the true essence indestructible as a diamond is all that shows. Once realized, it is realized forever — there is no interruption.
All that the enlightened teachers, ancient and modern, have said and done — the scriptural teachings, the enlightenment stories, the meditation stories, the question-and-answer sessions, all their teaching functions — all of this illuminates this true essence alone.
If you can be free and clear in actual practice for a long time, naturally you will come to meet the Source on all sides and become unified and whole.
Haven’t you seen Fadeng’s verse?
Going into a wild field, not choosing,
Picking up whatever plant comes to hand,
Rootless but finding life,
Apart from the ground but not falling.
Right before your eyes, it has always been there. Facing the situation, why don’t you speak? If you don’t know it in your daily life, where then will you look for it? Better find out.
Tawazu’ in Sufic terms
means something more than hospitality.
It is laying before one’s friend willingly what one has,
in other words sharing with one’s friend all the
good one has in life, and with it,
enjoying life better.
When this tendency
to tawazu’ is developed, things that
give one joy and pleasure become more enjoyable by
sharing with another. This tendency comes from the aristocracy
of the heart. It is generosity and even more than generosity. For the
limit of generosity is to see another pleased in his pleasure,
but to share one’s own pleasure with another is greater
than generosity. It is a quality which is foreign
to a selfish person, and the one who
shows this quality is on the
path of saintliness.
Man seeks happiness in pleasure, in joy, but these are only shadows of happiness. The real happiness is in the heart of man. But man does not look for it. In order to find happiness, he seeks pleasure. Anything that is passing and anything that results in unhappiness is not happiness.
In reality very few in this world know what happiness means. Pleasure is the shadow of happiness, for pleasure depends upon things outside ourselves; happiness comes from within ourselves. Happiness belongs to the heart quality; pleasure to the outer world. The distance between pleasure and happiness is as vast as that between earth and heaven. As long as the heart is not tuned to its proper pitch one will not be happy. That inner smile which shows itself in a man’s expression, in his atmosphere, that belongs to happiness. If position were taken away and wealth were lost in the outer life, that inner happiness would not be taken away. And the smiling of the heart depends upon the tuning of the heart, the heart must be tuned to that pitch where it is living.
There are a thousand excuses for unhappiness that the reasoning mind will make. But is even one of these excuses ever entirely correct? Do you think that if these people gained their desires they would be happy? If they possessed all, would that suffice? No, they would still find some excuse for unhappiness; all these excuses are only like covers over a man’s eyes, for deep within is the yearning for the true happiness which none of these things can give. He who is really happy is happy everywhere, in a palace or in a cottage, in riches or in poverty, for he has discovered the fountain of happiness which is situated in his own heart. As long as a person has not found that fountain, nothing will give him real happiness.
If there is any source from where one can get the direction on how to act in life, it is to be found in one’s heart. The exercises of the Sufi help to get to the source where one can get the direction, the right direction, where there is a spark of the Spirit of Guidance. Those who care to be guided by the spirit, they are always guided, but those who know not whether such a spirit exists or does not exist, they wander through life as a wild horse in the woods, not knowing where it goes, why it runs, why it stands. It is a great pity to be thirsty and remain thirsty when the spring of fresh water is within one’s reach. There can be no loss so great in life as having the spark glittering in one’s heart and yet groping in the darkness through life.