God Exists - so what?

Just yesterday, I was listening to a discourse by Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba and it struck me like a bolt. Swami was saying that there are so many people who come to Him, so many who know that God walks the earth, so many who have the faith that God exists - whatever their favourite form may be. But, how many want to see Him?

I want to talk to You!

For any Sadhaka, He said, there are 3 stages. The first one is Jnaatum where the Sadhaka knows that God exists. This is to know that there is God, the entire creation is manifest by His will, He is in all - animate and inanimate objects etc. But this is only 'knowing'....not 'experiencing'. Its like you know the Milky Way exists or that Jupiter exists and it has certain XYZ characteristics. But, then the Sadhaka should have an intense desire to go to the next stage - Drashtum.
This stage is where the Sadhaka 'sees' or 'experiences' the existence of God. This is what Saakshaatkaar is all about. But for that there should be intense yearning to see God. One must say 'O God, I know you exist but I want to see you, to talk to you, to hear you.' This is the stage where the Sadhaka will experience the existence of God through his/her cognitive senses.
 The last stage is Praveshtum where the Sadhaka wants to enter or merge into God. This is the stage of Advaita or non dualism. Here, it is not enough for the Sadhaka to experience the temporary joy of being able to see or converse with God manifested in his/her chosen form. The Sadhaka experiences oneness with the Divine.
Merge Into Him
It was all good to hear but ponder upon this, how many of us actually even bother to get to the Drashtum stage, leave alone the concept of merging with God. We are all happy to know that God exists but do not have the yearning to see Him. Swami was saying that the yearning of a sincere heart will make God manifest and show Himself but how many of us have a heart like that. We are too caught up in our mundane duties and worldly responsibilities and pastimes to even have time to contemplate on Him. Yearning for Him is a bigger thing. What is it that prevents us from having a yearning like that - the way we used to run for the front seats when Swami was physically amongst us. It was the same yearning which seems missing now.......why?
Swami very beautifully explained it with an example of someone who comes to know that ripe and luscious mangoes are available in the neighbouring street. This is Jnaatum, knowing. Now, the desire to see for himself enters this person. So, he goes out to the next street, not minding the summer heat, and feasts his eyes on the lovely, luscious and ripe mangoes. But even this does not satisfy him. He now wishes to possess them. So, he goes and either borrows or earns the money required to buy them. He then comes to the market and buys these mangoes. He now has them and enjoys looking at them all the way, till he gets home. Once he reaches home, he is still not satisfied. He then cuts the mangoes and eats them. This moment when the mango enters him and becomes one with him is the consummation. Swami then said that, in the same way - you must not rest till the merging into Him happens. I remember, during one group interview, we said, "Swami, we are so full of joy that you are with us and talking to us." Swami said, "Yes. Make this joy permanent." Little did I understand then what Swami meant. But, I suppose, it is this - Pravestum - when you enter into the feeling of oneness alone that it can become permanent. I only pray humbly that we may all experience that ultimate bliss during this very lifetime.


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