The Principles of Devotion

  1. The first principle underlying devotion is that God is the Creator of all and is omniscient. He is pure, flawless and whole. He is omnipresent. Human beings, the lower species of life, and in fact the entire universe are a sign of His existence. We are all His children. Hence there is a natural mutual affinity between ourselves and all others. For this reason we should respect our elders, be kind to those who are younger, be friendly with our equals, and we should also love our enemies.

    Love your enemies.

    St. Matthew 5:44
    St. Luke 6:27,35

  2. The second principle is that this universe is His creation, and it is all beautiful and full of happiness. Each one, of course, looks at this world according to the state or condition of his own mind.

  3. The third principle is that one should be happy in the Will of God, and should always remain contented and grateful for whatever happens to him. Whatever is being done is for our own good. This is beyond any shadow of doubt. What we may consider as trouble, has actually come in order to elevate the condition of our mind. It is well known that gold becomes purer and brighter when it is put into fire. Therefore, one should never complain.

  4. The fourth principle is that one should consider it to be the greatest sin to hurt the feelings of others. To provide comfort and happiness to others, should be considered the highest obligation, because non-violence or non-hatred in thought, word and deed is the highest form of religious duty.

  5. The fifth principle is that one should become a devotee by taking support from his Guru or Master, so that by being in contact with such a higher being one may also eventually attain the same stage.

One should never talk of I-ness. One should talk only of Him, so that in due course there will be nothing but Him. The highest aim of devotion is described in the following lines by Kabir:

I have been saying: ,Thou, Thou’ and I have become Thou, myself having completely vanished. I am grateful for Thy Name, because by speaking it I see ,Thou’ everywhere I look. To talk in terms of self is a very great evil. If you can be relieved of it; try to do so, because, oh Kabir!, a piece of cotton cannot escape from the clutches of fire if it is brought into contact with it. You are in me and I am in you. How can I see any difference? And, whenever I wish to discover a difference, leaving you aside, I meet with trouble. When you are, I am not, because I have experienced this from all aspects. Whenever I see you, nothing remains of me. The rope of ‘mine and thine’ is completely tied around the people of the world, but this humble Kabir is not bound by it because he has the support of the Lord.

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