Realize Thy Glory
God’s creative impulse finds consummation with the creation of His masterpiece, man, endowed with the same faculties that He Himself embodies.
– Vijay “Krishna”
Some world religions believe that God created humans after creating everything else, including angels. After creating man, he asked the angels to salute man. All the angels saluted man, accepting his superiority, except Iblis. God got angry at his defiance and cursed him to be Satan. The story allegorically signifies that being born human is a rare and a sought-after privilege. Human beings are potentially superior to angels and other creatures. Even the great saint Tulsidas, believed human birth was the result of great good karma and fortune. Even holy
books, saints and gods sing the glory of human birth.
It is great fortune that we are born as humans. The scriptures sing the glory of human birth, which is not easily available even to gods.
– Rama Charita Manas
Although human beings are not as well-equipped as many animals, they still reign supreme over all of them. Man
Realize Thy Glory
may not swim like a fish but he can invent ships and cruisers that run faster on water than any other creature. He cannot fly like a bird but he can create planes far superior to birds in aerodynamic skills. He may not run faster than leopards but can create cars and trains which none can outpace. Man, unlike animals, does not adapt to external circumstances but overcomes and controls them.
The spectacular feats of man are gifts of his developed spiritual powers which enliven and nourish brain power. The man who weeps over his miseries and misfortunes is like the prince sleeping on the golden bed in the golden palace with abundant material wealth and dreaming of being a beggar and crying, “Give me money! Give me money.” Then, someone awakens him to make him realize his true worldly status. Man is the prince in the kingdom of the world but is dreaming of his limitations.
There is an ancient parable that shows how man accepts all weaknesses and limitations despite having divine powers.
Once, there was a lioness who had grown weak due to lack of food and was unable to hunt down wild animals due to a baby lion growing in her body. One day, when she saw a large flock of sheep grazing in a nearby pasture, she pounced on one of the sheep and took it to the deep forest to eat it comfortably. The lioness was mad with hunger and had forgotten for a while that she was bearing a baby lion. The lioness did not realize that during her mad leap at the sheep, she had given birth to the baby lion. The flock of sheep was terrified by the lioness and ran hither and thither to save their lives, bleating helplessly. On the way, they found a baby lion lying in the grass. A sheep took pity on the baby lion and adopted it as her own son.
Awaken the Superman Within …
The baby lion started growing amid the flock of sheep. It adopted the habits and behavior of the sheep. It used to bleat instead of roar and eat grass instead of meat. Although the baby lion was fully grown, it behaved like a weak, meek lamb and remained unaware of its leonine strength and glory.
One day, another lion from a nearby forest came looking for prey. He was overjoyed to behold this flock of sheep. When the lion prowled towards them, the flock of sheep started fleeing. To his immense amazement, the lion saw another young lion running away as fast as it could with its tail high up in the air.
The older lion was unable to understand why the lion was running away from him. Deciding to find out the truth, he raced hard towards the other lion. When he caught hold of it, the sheep-lion fainted in fear. The big lion was more perplexed than ever and shook the sheep-lion awake. He then asked the animal why it was running away for no reason. The sheep-lion closed its eyes and bleated humbly, asking the lion to let it go.
The lion dragged the sheep-lion towards a lake at the end of the pasture to show it its real image, but the sheep-lion did not open its eyes in fear. With its eyes tightly closed, it requested the lion not to kill it. The big lion gave the sheep-lion a terrible shake. The sheep-lion opened its eyes. To its amazement, it saw not a sheep but the reflection of a strong young lion in the placid water of the lake. It realized immediately who it was and let out a mighty roar that shook the mountains all the way down to the green grass valley. Then both lions jumped across the pasture and returned to live in the den of lions.
Realize Thy Glory
The above story aptly illustrates how most of us, although made in the all-powerful image of God—“divine lion” of the universe—have been brought up in the sheepfold of this world where people have forgotten their true divine nature and have accepted all sorts of weaknesses due to environmental influences. We bleat with fear instead of roaring with fearlessness and power and eat the grass of ignorance forgetting our divine status in the world.
This book is the lion that will drag you to the lake of meditation and open the closed eyes of your wisdom and help you behold yourself as a “divine lion.”
If you are unaware of your true status, read what the lions of Vedanta (that is, God-realized saints) roaring aloud claim about the divine status of man:
That who is supreme Brahma, the soul of all, the great support of the universe, subtler than the subtle and eternal, that is thyself and you are that.
– Kaivalya Upanishad