Impediments and Useful Tools

It is through work, says Meher Baba, that you come to purity. Work dedicated to God frees you from responsibility and binding, and by so doing you surrender to Him whom you serve for love. This leads automatically to love for all whom you serve. From Treasures from the Meher Baba Journals, July 1939 issue, article by Kitty Davy, “Come and See”, Part II, page 62.

Ego is the biggest single impediment. A sense of humor is one of the best tools. The disciples who lived with him used to say that when they reviewed who had stayed and who had left, the ones who had left had the least sense of humor. So it follows that if you wanted to stay the course, you had to be able to laugh off disappointments and get on with it.

Cheerfulness, if you have it or can cultivate it, is a big help. Meher Baba made it a condition of being his companion during his “New Life” phase, that a companion should show others the face of cheerfulness, so as not to transmit one’s bad moods when they affect one. This is difficult because it is easy for others to discern a forced or artificial smile.

Believing that you’re such an analytical person that you ought to be able to discern the truth by analysis is another pitfall, a power play by the ego. One disciple used to say about some statement a listener would make, “It is true, [brother or sister] but at the same time it isn’t the whole Truth.” Part of the problem here is that God is infinite, and the infinite contains contradictions. A logic in which either proposition X is true or its negation is true simply doesn’t work. That’s why all the Manichean ideology (“God is good,” “Satan is bad,” and so forth) is a misrepresentation. God is above and beyond all such simple analysis. The reason to be “good” or “bad” is much more subtle. (Discourses, 7th edition, online version, Part 1, ref. page 61 “Good and Evil”)

Think always of me, says Meher Baba, whatever you may be doing, and gradually it will be I doing everything through you. “I” the doer, not you; so what concern do you have with the result?