Hazrat Inayat: Divine Impulse, pt I

The Source of Impulse

The first question to be considered in reference to the subject of divine impulse is: where does every impulse come from? Every movement, every vibration, every motion has one source. One sees a hint of this in the Bible where it says, “The word was God.” The word means vibration, and vibration means movement. In the Vedanta nada Brahma means sound. Vibration was the first or original aspect of Brahma, the Creator. In the Qur’an we read, “Be, He said, and it became.” Every impulse, every action on any plane of existence has its origin in the one source. It is also said in the Qur’an, “God is all power; there is no power but God’s.” In all that is done, what is done is by His power.

Now the question arises: If all the scriptures say this, where does Satan come in? What is the meaning behind the power ascribed to Satan? Another power is suggested besides the power of God, and sometimes the power attributed to Satan seems mightier than the power attributed to God. This is a puzzle to many, who wonder where the action of Satan comes in to the picture. The explanation is to be found in the understanding of metaphysics and of the laws of nature.

There is one law, the natural law, and all that comes directed by nature’s law is harmonious. The gardens that man has made may seem for a moment to improve upon the forests, but in the end, on examination, the garden with its artificial structures proves limited in beauty and harmony. The inspiration one gets in the forest, in the wilderness is much greater than in the manmade garden, for there man has made inspiration limited, because the life he radiates is limited.

Man makes a law and finds he cannot keep it; so he makes another law, and is never satisfied, for he takes no account of nature’s laws of peace and harmony. Men say that nature is cruel; yes, but man is far more cruel than the animals. Animals have never destroyed so many lives as man has. All the apparent cruelty of nature cannot compare with the cruelty, ignorance and injustice of man.

Jesus Christ said, “Thy will be done.” There is much for us to learn in this. Man makes another world in which he lives, a world different from the plan of God, from the laws of nature, and so the will of God is not done. The prayer teaches man that he must find what is the will of God. It is not necessary for the animals and birds to find out the will of God, for they are directed by nature’s impulse; they are closer to nature than man. The life of man is very far removed from the life of nature, and so every movement is difficult. We do not see this at present; with all our knowledge we make life more and more complicated and so the strife becomes greater and greater. For every person, old or young, rich or poor, life is a difficult struggle, for we go further and further from the impulse that comes direct from the source whence every impulse comes.

From the metaphysical point of view there are different rhythms describing the condition of man; they are spoken of in the Vedanta as sattva, rajas and tammas. Sattva is a harmonious rhythm, rajas a rhythm which is not in perfect harmony with nature, and tammas is a rhythm which is chaotic by nature and destructive. Every impulse that comes to man while he is in this chaotic rhythm is followed by destructive results. Any impulse coming to a person when he is in the rhythm of rajas is accomplished, but the impulse that comes when he is in the rhythm of sattva is inspired and is in harmony with the rhythm of the universe.

The active life of man gives little time for concentration and for putting mind and body into the condition in which he can experience the rhythm that gives inspiration and meets with the will of God. This experience comes in answer to the prayer of Christ, “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” By producing this condition of mind and body one tunes oneself to a certain pitch which is harmonious and heavenly and in which the divine will is easily done, as it is in heaven. It is in this rhythm alone that the will of God can be done.

It was not any prejudice against the world that made the great ones leave the world and go to the forests and caves; they went in order to tune themselves to that rhythm in which they could experience heaven. Heaven is not a country or a continent; it is a state, a condition within oneself, only experienced when the rhythm is in perfect working order. If one knows this, one realizes that happiness is man’s own property. Man is his own enemy: he seeks for happiness in the wrong direction and never finds it. It is a continual illusion. Man thinks, “If I had this or that I should be happy for ever,” and he never arrives at happiness because he pursues an illusion instead of the truth. Happiness is only to be found within, and when man tunes himself, he finds all for which his soul yearns within himself.

To be continued…

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