Sunday Service Week 18: Perfection is Self-Transcendence
Reading from Rays of the One Light
Truth is one and eternal. Realize oneness with it in your deathless Self, within.
The following commentary is based on the teachings of Paramhansa Yogananda.
We begin this week with a passage from the Gospel of St. Matthew, Chapter 5:
Love your enemies; bless them that curse you; do good to them that hate you; and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; . . .
If ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? Do not even the tax collectors the same?
And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? Do not even pagans so?
Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
This teaching is a continuation of last week’s lesson. To love all equally is possible only by seeing God everywhere—in others as well as in oneself. See whatever comes to you unasked for as a manifestation of His will. Be grateful for the pains you experience, for they are healing strokes of His love. Sometimes, healing is effected only by strong measures, but His love for you is manifested in the very attempt to heal.
Strive always to be impersonal, as though whatever happens to you were happening to someone else.
Persecution gives us the supreme opportunity to deny the thought, “This is happening to me,” and to affirm our inner freedom from the thought of ego. Don’t allow the negative perceptions of others to become your own self-definition.
Seek God: This is the true goal of life—though how difficult to cling to in the midst of hatred, spite, and persecution! The Bhagavad Gita tells us in the seventh Chapter:
Out of thousands, one strives for spiritual attainment; and out of many blessed true seekers, who strive assiduously to reach Me, one, perhaps, perceives Me as I am.
O truth seeker, be one, among all those thousands, who seeks the supreme goal!
Thus, through holy scripture, God has spoken to mankind.
Reading from Affirmations for Self-Healing
There are three kinds of human courage: blind, passive, and dynamic. Blind courage doesn’t count the cost until it finds itself faced, horror-stricken, with the bill. Passive courage is the strength of will to adjust to reality, whatever it may be. And dynamic courage is the strength of will not only to accept reality, but to confront it with another reality of one’s own making.
There is a fourth kind of courage: not human, but divine. Divine courage comes from living in the awareness of God’s presence within, and in the realization that He is the sole Reality. Live more in Him, for nothing and no one can touch what you really are.Practice this affirmation out loud, guided by Swami Kriyananda
I live protected by God’s Infinite Light. So long as I remain in the heart of it, nothing and no one can harm me.
I look to Thee for my strength, Lord. Hold me closely in Thy arms of love. Then, whatever happens in my life I shall accept with joy.