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Religious Gathekas

(To be read at the Service of Universal Worship)

Religious Gatheka Number 2

The Belief in God

It is the spirit of all souls which is personified in all ages as God. There are periods when this spirit is materialized in the faith of humanity and worshiped as God, the Sovereign and the Lord of both the worlds, as Judge, Sustainer and Forgiver; but there are periods when this realization has become less in humanity, when mankind has become absorbed in the life of the world more than in the spiritual ideal. Therefore the belief in God comes to humanity like tides in the sea. Every now and then it appears on the surface mostly with a Divine Message given as an answer to the cry of humanity at a certain period. So in the life of individuals at times the belief in God comes as tides in the sea, with an impulse to worship, to serve God, to search for God, to love God and to long for God-communication. The more the material life of the world is before one's eyes the more the spiritual impulse is closed. The spiritual impulse therefore follows times of sorrow and of disappointment through life.

The belief in God is natural, but in life both art and nature are necessary. So God Who exists independent of our making Him, must be made by us for our own comprehension. To make God intelligible first man must make his God. It is on this principle that the idea of many gods and the custom of idol worship was based in the ancient religions of the world. God cannot be two. The God of each is the God of all, but in order to comprehend that God we each have to make our own God. Some of us seek justice, we can seek for God Who is just. Some of us look for beauty, we must find it in the God of beauty. Some of us seek for love, we must find it in the God of mercy and compassion. Some of us wish for strength and power, we must find it in the God Almighty. The seeking of every soul in this world is different, distinct and peculiar to himself, and he can best attain to it by finding the object of his search in God.

The moment one arrives at this belief no question need he ask of his fellow man, for the answer to every question that springs from his mind he finds in his own heart. The dwelling place of God, which is called Heaven, is then found in his own heart. The friend on Whom one can constantly depend someone Whom one can always trust, someone Whose sympathy and love is secure, someone Who will never fail, someone Who is strong enough to help, someone Who is sufficiently wise to guide in life, he will find in his own heart.

Those who out of their materialistic view cannot believe in the God-ideal lose a great deal in their lives. That ideal which is the highest and best ideal, the only ideal worth loving, worth worshiping, worth longing for, worth sacrificing all one has, and worth depending upon during the daylight and through the darkness of night, is God; and he who has God in his life has all he needs; he who has not God, he, having all things of this mortal world, is lonely, he is in the wilderness even if he be in the midst of the crowd. The journey of the Sufi, therefore, is to God. It is Divine Knowledge which he seeks, it is the realization of God consciousness which is his goal.