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Volume XIV - The Smiling Forehead

Part II - The Deeper Side of Life

Chapter XVII
The Law of Life

ALL THAT comes to a person – in reality he arrives at it. By this I do not mean to say that he does not make it, create it, earn it, or deserve it, or that it does not come to him by chance. All that comes may come to a person in the above five ways, but at the same time in reality he arrives at it. These five ways are realms through which a certain thing comes, but what brings it about is the person himself.

This subtle idea remains hidden until one has an insight into the law of life and notices clearly its inner working. For instance, if one said that a person had come to a certain position or rank, or into the possession of wealth or fame by working for it – yes, outwardly it is true, but many work and do not arrive at it. Besides one might say that all blessings of Providence come to one if one deserves them, but one can see so much in life which is contrary to this principle, for there are many in the world who do not deserve and yet they attain. With every appearance of free will there seems to be helplessness in every direction of life. And as to what man calls chance, there is so much against it too, for a deep insight into life will prove that what seems to be chance is not in reality chance. It seems to be chance, as illusion is the nature of life.

Now to explain more fully what I mean by arriving at a certain thing: every soul is so to speak continually making its way towards something, sometimes consciously and sometimes unconsciously. What a person does outwardly is an appearance of action, an action which may have no connection with his inner working. It is like a journey: not everyone knows towards what he is making his way, and yet everyone is making his way. Whether he is making his way towards the goal he has desired, or whether he is making his way towards quite the contrary goal which he has never desired, he does not know. But when the goal is realized on the physical plane then a person becomes conscious: 'I have not worked for it; I have not created it; I have not deserved it; I have not earned it. How is it possible that it has come?' If it is an object desired by him then perhaps he gives the credit of it to himself; he tries to believe: 'I have made it in some way'. If it is not desirable then he wants to attribute it to someone else, or to suppose that for some reason or other it has happened like that. But in reality it is a destination at which one has arrived at the end of one's journey.

One cannot definitely say that one has created it, or made it, that one has deserved it, or that it has come by accident. What can be said is that one has journeyed towards it, either consciously or unconsciously, and has arrived at it. Therefore in point of fact in his desirable or undesirable experiences no one has departed from the destination at which he was meant to arrive.

Nevertheless, what is most necessary is to connect the outward action with the inward journey, the harmony of which will certainly prove to be a cause of ease and comfort. It is this which is meant by saying that one must have harmony within oneself. Once this harmony is established one begins to see the cause of all things more clearly than in its absence.

One might ask in what way harmony can be established between the inner journey and the outward action. What generally happens is that a person is so much absorbed in his outward action that his inner attitude becomes obscured to his view. The first thing necessary is to remove the screen that hides the inner attitude from one's sight. Everyone is conscious of what he does, but not conscious of his inner attitude. In other words, everyone knows what he is doing, but everyone does not necessarily know towards what he is going. No doubt the more one is conscious of this, the less becomes one's action, for thought controls action – but it only gives a rhythm, a balance to life. Compared with a person who is capable of running without knowing where he is going, he is better off who is walking slowly but knows towards what he is going.

There are two distinct parts of one action: there is an action of our inner life and there is an action of our outer life, the inner being and the outer being. The outer being is physical action, and the inner action is our attitude. Both may be actions of free will, but in a certain way they both prove to be mechanical or automatic actions. No doubt the inner action has a great power and influence upon the outer action. A person may be busy all day doing a certain thing but at the same time, if the attitude is working against him, he can never have success in his work. By his outward action a person may deserve a great prize, but for his inner action he may not be deserving it. Therefore if these two actions are contrary to one another, there is no construction and there is no attainment of the desired results. The true result, the result that is desirable, comes through the harmony of these two activities.

checked 10-Nov-2006