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Levels of Faith

By Karmayogi

Faith is considered blind and is called blind faith. We see the evidence of such faith everywhere, especially when the masses place their faith in politicians. This is a fertile ground of superstition, but, for the faithful it pays rich dividends. By such faith one passes an examination in which he has answered very poorly. His faith gets him even a second class in M.A. Literature. It is true this is superstitious. It is equally true it brings startling results up to a point, beyond which it breaks. Nehru’s faith in Gandhiji was not based on his own understanding of the power of Satyagraha, but it was based on his pure faith in the Mahatma. Sardar Patel too believed in Gandhiji like Nehru. Their faith built a great Freedom Movement. When Independenceapproached, both refused to listen to Gandhiji. They listened to Lord Mountbatten instead.

The next level of faith is based on intelligent understanding. Instead of being blind, the follower tries to understand clearly and precisely the ideas. He does not believe unless what he believes in is clear to him. A scientist believes a theory like this. It is based on his own understanding of the theory as proved by his own experiments, not as a dogma given to him by a great soul. The scientist’s faith is in the theory, not the one who discovered it. In fact, the scientist ultimately believes in himself, in his own understanding. This is better described as understanding, not faith.

There is a still higher level of faith. The Divine Mother makes a statement. We understand Her explanation. The explanation gives a clear understanding. Now we believe not the understanding, but The Mother. I accept this statement not because I understand it, but because Mother has made it. The value of the statement issues from the fact it is made by Mother and not because I understand it. I will have equal faith even if I do not understand it.

This way, one refrains from being superstitious. Also he prefers to have faith in the Guru, not in himself. This is Faith for Faith’s sake devoid of unintelligent superstition. Faith of any description yields results. A superior faith brings superior results. A boy having superstitious faith passes his M.A. in second class and becomes a lecturer in the university. One whose faith is based on understanding becomes an educationist of national eminence. He who has the simple pure faith in the Divine, disregarding his crystal clear understanding that is precise, rises to become an original thinker who contributes to his subject attaining international eminence winning the Noble Prize.

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