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Everything comes from the One Indwelling Divinity

There may be a great downpour. Huge torrents of water will be flowing from the trees, water will be coming from the roof and the rain-gutters, it will be coming from the overhangs, it will be spilling over from the roof of the adjoining house, and running off from there onto your house, it will be flooding the ground all around causing rushing rivulets and streams. The water will be everywhere and will seem to be coming from so many different sources, but every drop of all this water can only have originated from the sky above.

Similarly, all this speech, all this strength, all this beauty, all these skills, in whomsoever they appear, are all coming from only the one source, the one divinity pervading everywhere. You have to recognize the unity which underlies all these different traits. Once you have a firm grasp of this unity, all diversity will disappear. And once the diversity disappears, the desires will also disappear. Then, when desire goes and the attraction to worldly objects goes with it, there will be no more room for repulsion and dislike leading to anger. Therefore, when you gain divine wisdom you conquer desire and anger.

It is through spiritual practice, particularly through inner inquiry, that you will be able to realize the unity and enjoy the divinity which is always within you. This yearning to gain the light of divine wisdom, to see the one in the many, is expressed in the great prayer:

From the unreal lead me to the real,
From darkness lead me to the light,
From death lead me to immortality.
Om, Peace, Peace, Peace.
Asatoma satgamaya,
Tamasoma jyothir gamaya,
Mrityorma amritam gamaya,
Om shanti, shanti, shantihi.

Whatever work you do, if you do it for the sake of the Lord and offer it to the Lord, then the work takes on a sacred value. Anything that becomes associated with the Lord, thereby becomes sacred and highly potent. Consider, for example, an ordinary rat, which is a despicable thing. If you see a rat inside your house, you take a stick and try to kill it, or set a trap to destroy it. When you see it you feel revulsion. But, traditionally in India, the rat has been associated with a particular form of the divinity, Lord Ganesha, who is the embodiment of divine wisdom;. The rat is Ganesha's vehicle which carries Ganesha around. Now, if you are a devotee of Ganesha and you see images of the rat associated with Ganesha, you revere it as the sacred instrument of the Lord. What is the reason for this? The high value that the rat carrying Ganesha has been able to obtain is due to its association with this representation of the divinity.

Similarly, when you come across a snake you may feel some fear and go to get a stick to drive it away. Or you may get a snake charmer to catch hold of it. But when the same snake adorns the neck of Lord Shiva, you worship it and offer it your prayerful salutations. What is the reason for this? The reason is that it has offered itself to the Lord and serves him alone. Therefore, it has also become divine like the Lord. Even if it is a poisonous snake, once it has offered itself to God, it acquires fame and nobility.