Whenever we see a living creature, we are in effect seeing the Universal Reality. Whether it be a honeybee or a lamb, or man, He is within each of us. Even Space and Time are within Him. Krishna says: ‘The Lord dwells in the hearts of all beings, O Arjuna, causing all beings, by His illusive power, to revolve as if mounted on a machine’. Here, the word ‘heart’ is more figurative and metaphysical. God lends His power to all the living creatures; He energises everyone. He is the unseen puppeteer, without whom living beings have no existence, vitality or emotion; we are mere expressions of the will and intention of the unseen Hand. Though He is present everywhere, the Lord is most conspicuously self-evident in the heart of the devotee during meditation. He is the light of consciousness, helping us ‘see’. He knows even what is in our subconscious minds, to which even our conscious active minds have no access (except only occasionally during our dreams). This silent light of consciousness observes all the three states - of waking, dream and deep sleep. For individual consciousness, the innermost essence is of awareness and the knowledge that ‘I am’. This self-awareness is both the source of our own limited self-consciousness as well as the universal source of all being.
God, who is One, pervades all and is the inner soul of all beings. Lord Krishna says: ‘I am the Self, O Arjuna, seated in the hearts of all beings; I am the beginning, the middle and also the end of all beings’. The relationship of every being to that in-dwelling Light of God is the very essence of existence. If we always bear this in our mind and heart, our relationship with all other things will automatically become right, proper and ideal…as it ought to be. Not harming or doing anything bad to any creature is a very essential part of our spiritual life, otherwise we will be offending God, whom we are trying to realise. If we are hostile towards Nature, we are hostile to God, the Master Mind, the Great Intelligence. Man must develop a four-fold awareness: awareness of the immanence of God in Nature, awareness of the presence of God in all creatures, awareness of the presence of the Light of God in all fellow human beings, and awareness of the ideal way to relate to oneself – by making oneself an instrument of God and a channel for the manifestation and expression of God’s divinity and purity. Awareness of God’s presence within and without, in all beings, creatures and Nature, is the secret of living in the awareness of the Almighty. Let us therefore make our life sublime and divine and attain God-consciousness and Divine perfection and liberation - the supreme, grand goal of all spiritual aspiration, life and living. The objective is to realise that the Spiritual Self of man is forever an integral part of the Spiritual Self of the Universe. Man is then one with God and through that with all that lives. Man-Spirit and God-Spirit are one Spirit, and to know this truth of truths helps us transform our lives.
By ‘scientific’ investigation into the nature of things, the wise have recognised the interconnectedness of all objects and realised that the world is an organism, complete in itself, rather than a medley of scattered particulars. This is true knowledge - wherein we maintain the diversity of objects as a reality and yet accede or concede that there is an inward collaborative activity within all organisms, since God permeates them all. I cannot even be aware that you are sitting in front of me, let alone speak to you, unless the ‘law’ that God is Universal is operating between you and me. All knowledge and experience is a manifestation of this universality. Whoever knows this truth cannot appropriate agency to himself; only an action that is free from agency or the commitment of personality in the performance of its activity, is pure. Anything else is motivated by egoism, personal esteem and selfish desire, or performed with an intention of harming others in some way or the other, covertly or overtly. God is in the heart of all beings - the absoluteness of the Universal element in all experience. The Universal is thus also the Self, and everything is determined by the purpose of the Supreme Will. The utter abolition of oneself in the recognition of the All-Being of God is known as the ‘surrender’ of self. This is the ultimate sacrifice. An individual must always walk hand in hand with God’s grace: Arjuna is always with Krishna. This is what the last verse of the Gita says, when it propounds that: ‘Victory is certain, prosperity will prevail and everything shall be well, where Arjuna and Krishna are seated in one chariot and move forward in the battlefield of life’. Where man walks with God, all will be well. The challenge is to know when it is time to let go of self-concern and open oneself to the Universal Reality.
Goodwill toward all beings is true religion. Jesus Christ says this very beautifully: ‘But I say unto you, love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them that despitefully use you and persecute you. That you may be the children of your Father which is in Heaven; for He makes his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust’.
Dr. Rajesh Bhola is President of Spastic Society of Gurgaon and is working for the cause of children with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, mental retardation and multiple disabilities for more than 30 years. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org