Guiding Light: Our Difficulties Indicate Our Potentialities

The nature of your difficulty indicates the nature of the victory you will gain, the victory you will exemplify in Yoga. Thus, if there is persistent selfishness, it points to a realisation of universality as your most prominent achievement in the future. And, when selfishness is there, you have also the power to reverse this very difficulty into its opposite, a victory of utter wideness. When you have something to realise, you will have in you just the characteristic which is the contradiction of that something. Face to face with the defect, the difficulty, you say, “Oh, I am like that! How awful it is!” But you ought to see the truth of the situation.

Say to yourself, “My difficulty shows me clearly what I have ultimately to represent. To reach the absolute negation of it, the quality at the other pole — this is my mission.” Even in ordinary life, we have sometimes the experience of contraries. He who is very timid and has no courage in front of circumstances proves capable of bearing the most!

To one who has the aspiration for the Divine, the difficulty which is always before him is the door by which he will attain God in his own individual manner: it is his particular path towards the Divine Realisation. There is also the fact that if somebody has a hundred difficulties it means he will have a tremendous realisation — provided, of course, there are in him patience and endurance and he keeps the aspiring flame of Agni burning against those defects. And remember: the Grace of the Divine is generally proportioned to your difficulties.

Difficulties are sent to us exclusively to make the realisation more perfect. Each time we try to realise something and meet with a resistance or an obstacle or even a failure — what seems to be a failure — we should know, we should never forget that it is exclusively, absolutely, so that the realisation may be more perfect. So this habit of cringing, of getting discouraged or even of feeling uncomfortable, or of abusing yourself and telling yourself: “There! Again I have made amistake” — all that is absolute foolishness. Simply tell yourself: “We don’t know how to do things as they ought to be done; well, they are being done for us, come what may!”

— The Mother, Sri Aurobindo Ashram

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