What is Divine Life?
by Swami Sivananda
To shed the animal in man and to sublimate the human in him into the divine, to express this sublimation in his daily, hourly, life in thought, word and deed - that is truly divine life.
To speak the truth at all costs, to speak sweetly with love, to practise non-violence, celibacy, to behold the Lord in all forms is Divine life.
To be ever in communion with the Lord by annihilating mineness and egoism through faith, devotion and self-surrender is Divine life.
If you want to be a devotee of the Lord, you must also realize the evils of undivine life. This will surely save you, Repetition of the Lord's Names will purify the mind. But along with these you must also practise vichara, When the mind entertains unholy thoughts, remember the consequences, viz. pain, disease and death. Also think of the advantages of leading a pure life. Remember the lives of saints and draw inspiration from them. Pray to God for more and more strength. Read Ramayana, Bhagavata and the Gita. All that is beautiful, all that gives some pleasure, appears so because of the beautiful, blissful God who is behind them all. Real beauty, real joy can be had only in God who eternally lives in your own heart.
Every attempt to cultivate divine virtues, selflessness, straight-forwardness, courage, serenity, generosity, mercy and self-restraint, this in reality is Divine life or life in God. Ever keep up a balanced mind in success and failures, censures and praise, honour and dishonour, gain and loss, heat and cold. Give up identification with the body, wife, children and all kinds of property. Identify yourself with the all-pervading immortal blissful Atman and rest peacefully in Brahman.
Of all creations of the Lord, man alone can comprehend and love God and attain to liberation. Really, man's knowledge should embrace the whole universe. There is nothing in the universe that man cannot know. It is the love of knowledge for its own sake, not because it brings us food not because it enables us to practise a profession but love of truth for its own sake. That is the destiny and glory of man.
Man's life must not be confined to the limits of his family: but should take in the entire village or town, nay, the whole state, the whole country, the whole earth and the whole universe. His love must embrace the entire universe. Therefore, when he loves knowledge for its own sake and his love is universal and boundless, then the mighty protector God is pleased because man attains the summit of his glory.
The true goal of life is to get back to the source from which we came. Just as the river flow restlessly till they join the ocean, the ultimate source from which they got their supply of water, just as fire leaps and burns furiously till it merges in its own origin, so too, we should be restless here till we obtain His grace and become one with him.
All is God: God is all. This world is your best teacher or Guru. There is a lesson in each and every experience. Learn it and try to become wise. Every failure is a stepping stone of your faith in God. Every disease is a Karmic purgation. Every unpleasant incident is test of your inner spiritual strength.
If you have faith and absolute trust in the Lord the source for everything, your only deliverer, the only Reality, the power within you the powerful fountain of eternal Bliss and joy, you are indeed most blessed. He will surely take his seat in your noble and pure heart. Think of the beautiful lotus flower within your heart. Everything that comes your way is an expression of his beautiful grace. God is your Divine parent, friend, guide, goal and support. He is your all. Faith in the Lord will lead you to Him