Shams Tabrizi in his Rule # 8 of Love said, “Patience does not mean to passively endure. It means to look at the end of a process. What does patience mean? It means to look at the thorn and see the rose, to look at the night and see the dawn. Impatience means to be shortsighted as to not be able to see the outcome. The lovers of God never run out of patience, for they know that time is needed for the crescent moon to become full.
Patience, I feel can begin with an expression of tolerance. To tolerate something with respect to time and the duration of time, and continue exponentially, infinitely.
Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari in the book, “My Master” (also available as a free ebook here) said, “Tolerance can give us that quantum of time which will permit us to probe below the surface and see the underlying truth.”
See what underlying truth? The need to be patient, the need to be tolerant. There is a great need, latent in humanity to be patient and understanding with the circumstance one is thrown in, with oneself, and others. And we require time for that patience to sink in, within our system to be expressed. Patience need to be cultivated, initially, and requires time – which tolerance can give.
Patience comes out of faith in the creator, that in the grand scheme of things, this is what would ensue and HIS will is final. At the same time, patience is NOT a passive process, definitely. It is a very active process just like meditation is. Patience is almost meditative. When the need to be patient with people and situations arises, what can we do?
- Stop whatever you are doing!
- Connect within, to your own heart.
- Observe. How do you feel?
- Connect your heart to the Infinite Source of Love & Light, the Infinite Source of Divinity within yourself, and be absorbed in it.
- Slowly spread your awareness to your outside surrounding, and suppose everything else to be absorbed in the same Source of Divinity. The circumstances, the external factors, people who force you to be patient with them – let them all be Divinised!
After a while, observe how you feel. Observe how the situation turns out. What is the difference in the situation because of your patience? What is the difference because of your supposition that everything and everyone around you is patient and connected to the Creator, connected to the eternal source of Divinity?
I don’t say it is going to work just like that. All that I am saying is, let us start trying it and with habit and practice, it would be a second nature, and no longer requiring the need for this exercise. Let us be patient with our own self, and exercise patience with ourselves, for the lack of patience in us. And with an acceptance and tolerance of the self, our patience would spread for things outside of us. Anything that is, has to start with the self, like Chariji says!
Patience doesn’t come overnight! Be patient!
John Milton in his sonnet “On His Blindness” concludes, “They also serve who only stand and wait.”
He is lamenting the fact of his own blindness and inability to serve God because of being blind. And finally with a cheerful acceptance of the fact that God would not give anything which one is unable to handle, resigns himself to wait … indefinitely and infinitely … We all know his magnum opus “Paradise Lost” was composed in blindness. Nature has its ways!
Waiting requires enormous faith, enormous love for the cause you are waiting for, and enormous acceptance in HIS will. That waiting is patience.
From where does this love come, which is going to give you tolerance and patience? Shri Kamlesh D. Patel answered to this –
“From a pure heart – a truthful, genuine heart. That is what makes us separate from other kingdoms: genuineness, love and purity.”
May the Force (Patience and Love) be with you this holiday season.