Application - that is what 'Workings-days' are about!
The Narada Bhakti Sutra is our guide for a while… the nature of Love (with the capital 'ell') and a full exploration of it. As always, you are encouraged to seek out the full text from Chinmaya Publications (links in side-bar); but for those who prefer e-readers, this version is recommended. Whilst awareness and interest can be raised by these posts on AV-blog, they cannot substitute for a thorough reading and contemplation...and practice!
Chapter Seven; Section 1 - The Glory of The Sage; Glory of the Path. Discussing the nature of saints and sages, of wise men and holy…
tIxIRkuvRiNt tIwaRin sukmIRkuvRiNt kmaRi[ sCDaSÇIkuvRiNt zaSÇai[.69.
Tiirdhiikurvanti tiirthaani sukarmiikurvanti karmaani sachcchaastriikurvanti shaastraani ||69||
(they) sanctify the sacred places of pilgrimage, add glory to actions and lend authority to scriptures.
As these totally devoted, one may even say intoxicated, men and women move about the world and, as they do so, the Love emanates from them and, even in places already considered to be holy, it seems they add just that bit more of the holy.
Such truly holy, Love-filled beings are indeed rare. Wherever they go in the world, however, they leave their mark and influence the people who are privileged to be in their company. They infuse into the ugly animal human a dose of Love, an embrace of brotherhood, a touch of tolerance, mercy goodness, kindness… their very presence seems to purify the environs and they come into contact with. Their words and deeds are exemplary and the mental and intellectual behaviour of the world is improved by what they offer. Such persons as these will always be advocates for the best of human nature to rise to the top, for peace to reign upon society. Never will they be heard or seen to be inciting anything other than Love.
Equally, these illumined ones will have the learning and ability to shed a deeper understanding of the scriptures - all scriptures, but of course here, we are talking particularly of the Sanskrit Shaastras - which would have remained a mystery were it not for the incredible parampara of teaching which has ensured accuracy and unbroken continuation down the millennia. The messages contained therein would amount to nothing, did we not have the teachers to bring them to light.
What is more, the shaastras would be little more than words and apparent fiction were it not for the authority provided by such sages. It is by living according to the shaastras, by proving the theories if you will, that authority is provided. Proving over the centuries, time and again, that the methods and systems contained within the shaastras are to be applied in life and are practical and possible, resulting in sublime existence.
When we read the words of an Adi Shankara, a Vivekananda, a Ramana Maharishi, not only do we find that they are devoid of anything ugly, but have, in fact, a beauty beyond the words themselves; there is no selfishness, only Love shining bright. In our modern life, we have lost sight of such beauteous examples of life. We may read the words, but then close the book and turn around and engage again in a world of strife and turmoil, believing we cannot make the change, cannot aspire to anything of the promise in those words read, examples shown. Yet, if we could for one moment, grasp onto the very feet of one of these exemplars of spiritual life, just one small step at a time include some of the teachings into our own lives, how much better would life be? This is the choice we have. Change begins with ourselves only - but the towering examples of the saints and sages must be our guides; we must trust that their understanding of the scriptures is being generously shared and given authority by their very own example.