Can We Rejoice Always?
Swami Chidananda

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Dipavali is the day in the year when there is light everywhere. There are reunions and celebrations, and people forget for a moment their problems and difficulties. They rejoice! 

The question arises: Should it not be possible to make this mood a permanent state of your inner being? Should you not at least try to see if it is possible to perpetuate this mood and make it a permanent state of mind within yourself, so that all the days of the year and not just one single day will be a day of rejoicing, of light, of effulgence, of cheerfulness?

We don’t require any special day to celebrate God, because God is every day, everywhere, always. So we can always rejoice in Him, celebrate Him, because He is perennial being. He is eternal, and being all-pervading, He is everywhere present. We are never far from Him; He is ever near to us at all times. 

This very fact, this great truth, which our ancestors realised provides us with an answer to the question. Certainly it is possible to make it a permanent state, due to the very fact that this great eternal Light of lights beyond all darkness dwells within you as your eternal, permanent indweller. That Light is within you. So it is certainly possible because what it takes to live thus, and be thus, is already there within you as the essence of your being. So how could it not be possible? 

The wonder is that this possibility is forgotten and the impossible is imagined. The impossible, the absurdity of such a thing as the absence of God or the absence of Light is imagined. It is very strange. And this strangeness, this most improbable and impossible situation, had to he referred to; therefore, in Indian philosophy they termed it maya. 

To be true to our own Self, we must be what we are. Therefore, shine! Let your life be an effulgence. Wherever you go, make it impossible for darkness to prevail. All negativity is darkness. The simple little prayer of St. Francis of Assisi is a great reminder of this fact, of this truth—let your life be a bright and shining factor, coming into this circle of human life as something so divine and positive that all negativity is replaced by that which is desirable and bright.

St Francis teaches us how to dispel darkness: “Where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; and where there is sadness, joy.” This simple prayer is not merely great and beautiful in its idea, it is also great in the philosophy which it conceals within these simple words. And it concludes by saying that this is the way to find joy within yourself, peace within yourself, to liberate yourself from the little self and attain to your birthright—the eternal light and everlasting life.”

( This article has been reproduced from "Awake! Realise Your Divinity by Sri Swami Chidananda)


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