Tuesday, 30 October 2012

On tests

Got this from an old Bal Vikas magazine -- an extract from Swami's discourse to His students

"My dear students! Why should God test us? What does this test mean? It is not test but it is His taste. Unless you are tested, your determination will not be strong. You appear for four examinations per year. What are they meant for? They are not to trouble you but to develop your interest in the subjects. When you pass in the examination, you are promoted to a higher class. You will be tested even for entering higher studies. God also does the same. Whatever may be the test, you must clear it. Only then you attain a higher state. It is in fact to protect, not to trouble. It is not a punishment. but only a protection. Then why does God want to test when He knows everything?

There is no need for Him to test you as He knows your standard. Only the teacher tests you because he does not know about you. God knows that you are good but He tests in order to set an ideal for others. What you see is one and what God sees is another. God does not put everyone to test. He keeps protecting you. He is always there within you, beside you and around you to safeguard you. How can such a God test you?

But all your sins and shortcomings need to be washed away. We wash the tumbler both inside outside before using. Is it not enough if you wash inside? But, people outside also should see the cleanliness. He tests you in order to strengthen your patience and devotion. Even gold is tested. Everything is tested. Suppose you have been honoured by a degree or you apply for a job. They call you for an interview. Even the interview is an examination. The questions can be very tricky.

Once an interview was organised in the third floor of a building. The interviewers asked the person who was being interviewed, "How many steps have you climbed to reach the third floor of the building?" The boy was stunned. He said, "Sir, I did not count." He was rejected for this reason.

These tests are conducted in order to test your courage. Without test, you do not get rest. You should ask for tests. You have to face the tests and attain a higher stage. If you keep on pestering Swami that you do not want test, how can you go to a higher state? In order to progress ahead, you must face the tests and you should have the courage to face them. Even if you are weak or unfortunate, you must try to win. The Godward path is very hard to follow. Whatever happens, take it as God's will.

We must say, "Whatever You have given me, I offer it back to You. I did not bring anything with me." You may think that your mother and father have given you this body. They might have given birth to the body, but who put the heart in it? You may feed the body, but who is running the heart incessantly? Who is its Master? Who is the driving force behind the circulation of blood? 

God Himself takes care of everything that goes on in the body. The eye that is not even an inch long can clearly perceive the stars far away in the sky. Who has given this strength to the little eye? God has conferred upon you everything. However, you say everything is yours out of ego. This is the greatest ignorance. So, let God do Whatever He wants.

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