Sense perceptions are false and deceptive

Sense perceptions are false and deceptive

Mahatma Gandhi

My own experience has led me to the knowledge that the fullest life is impossible without an immovable belief in a Living Law in obedience to which the whole universe moves. A man without that faith is like a drop thrown out of the ocean bound to perish.

I have made the world’s faith in God my own, and as my faith is ineffaceable, I regard that faith as amounting to experience. However, as it may be said that to describe faith as experience is to temper with Truth, it may perhaps be more correct to say that I have no word for characterizing my belief in God.

God is that indefinable something which we all feel but which we do not know. To me God is Truth and Love, God is ethics and morality. God is fearlessness, God is the source of light and life and yet He is above and beyond all these. God is conscience. He is even the atheism of the atheist. He transcends speech and reason. He is personal God to those who need His touch. He is the purest essence. He simply Is to those who have faith.

He is long suffering. He is patient but He is also terrible. He is the greatest democrat the world knows. He is the greatest tyrant ever known. We are not, He alone Is.

I do not regard God as a person. Truth for me is God, and God’s Law and God are not different things or facts, in the sense that an earthly king and his law are different. Because God is an Idea, Law Himself. Therefore, it is impossible to conceive God as breaking the Law.

He, therefore, does not rule our actions and withdraw Himself. When we say He rules our actions, we are simply using human language and we try to limit Him. Otherwise, He and His Law abide everywhere and govern everything.

Therefore, I do not think that He answers in every detail every request of ours, but there is no doubt that He rules our action and I literally believe that not a blade of grass grows or moves without His will.

We are living in the midst of death. What is the value of ‘working for our own schemes’ when they might be reduced to naught in the twinkling of an eye, or when we may equally swiftly and unawares be taken away from them?

But we may feel strong as a rock, if we could truthfully say ‘we work for God and His schemes’. Then nothing perishes. All perishing is then only what seems. Death and destruction have then, but only then no reality about them. For death and destruction is then but a change.

You cannot realize the wider consciousness, unless you subordinate completely reason and intellect, and the body too.

He is no God who merely satisfies the intellect, if He ever does. God to be God must rule the heart and transform it. He must express Himself in every smallest act of His votary. This can only be done through a definite realization more real than the five senses can ever produce.

Sense perceptions can be, often are, false and deceptive, however real they may appear to us. Where there is realization outside the senses it is infallible. It is proved not by extraneous evidence but in the transformed conduct and character of those who have felt the real presence of God within.

Excerpted from ‘Aphorisms’. The 74th death anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi was observed on January 30.

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