The life of a person becomes mechanical if one remains overwhelmed with the sentiment that one must do such acts, one must perform such service, one must rise in this manner and sit in this manner and get up in this manner, and so on. Happiness disappears there. For this reason, such ritualism cannot be called real karma (right action). To serve others at one’s own sacrifice is called penance. In the absence of love, service rendered and penance undergone for show only are fruitless. All ritualistic devotion, sham penance, counting of beads, etc. are meant only for public show. True love and the Supreme Goal are lost sight of. The Supreme cannot be attained through any show actions, because in ritualistic thoughts, the sweetness of happiness is lacking. Divine Bliss is easily available only to those who base their spiritual practice (sádhaná) on love.
Subháśita Saḿgraha I, 114
That which makes the mind soft and strong and strenuous, so it may keep itself in a balanced state even in the condition of pain – that which perpetually creates a pleasant feeling within, is called love. Devotion is identical with love. The moment devotion is aroused, the love of God comes.
“Salvation and Devotion”
Another point to remember is that God is realized only by those whom He graces with compassion. You should not feel that you have done so much and that God must shower His Grace on you. Rather you should feel that it is up to the Lord to grace you or not. “This body of mine will work like a machine until You grace me with love” – this should be your feeling. If you are proud of your actions, this pride will remain in the end and the Grace of God will not come.
“God is With You”
It is unwise to leave the world, to leave service to humanity and to go to the Himalayas to attain the Supreme Consciousness. Well! This universe itself is the Supreme Consciousness – where will you go by leaving it? In the world someone thinks that he is not able to concentrate his mind because of the din and bustle; but in the cave of the Himalayas he thinks that he cannot get sweet fruit in a particular jungle, and hence tomorrow he will be going to pick ripe plums two or three miles away in a different forest. In either of the places he is not free. If the Supreme Consciousness does not want you to know Him, then you will not be able to attain Him in either place. If He wishes you to achieve Him, you can get Him here and now. What He sees is your aspiration for Him. Remember it – that at every step of your life He is testing whether you have been able to arouse love for Him in your mind. He is testing whether you want Him or worldly objects.
“Niiti and Dharma”
The highest treasure of human beings, distinct from other creatures, is their intellectual superiority. Had there been no intelligence in humans, they would hardly be different from other animals. This philosophical consciousness will lead humanity to greater intellectuality. And this constant pursuit of intellectuality leads one to its furthest limit, where intuition begins. Hence in the realm of intuitional practice it is tremendously helpful. This path of spiritual practice is not devoid of intellect or intuition, rather it is based on intuition. It has no scope for superstition or blind faith. It will facilitate the most all-round progress of humanity and manifest the highest human excellence.
"The Faculty of Knowledge”, Calcutta 1980
In the human world it is not physical strength but intellectual power that is victorious. The physical strength of the elephant is very great, but a small man goads him with his intellectual power. It is happening in every field of the world. So when human beings entered the inner world, they found that their real wealth lay in increasing their psychic strength. And gradually, as their psychic strength increased, it came slowly into contact with spirituality. They found that behind their psychic power there was another power also working, due to which they attained psychic strength. Then human beings invented spiritual practices.
They realized that the Supreme Consciousness is everything. Then the idea occurred in their minds, What a great deal of intellect He must possess, from whom they derived their intellect! So for evolution in the psychic level, they should think about Him - ideation on Him would increase their intellect. Then the Supreme Consciousness became the object of their minds. Unlike the animals, their minds started ideating upon the Supreme Consciousness.
Seminar Notes 1980, 10
When those who are guided by their own intellect and are experiencing the ups and downs of the world, realize that their intellect is very small and is unfit for performing greater actions, they then find no alternative but to merge their minds into the Mind of the Great. Then their minds will be converted into Cosmic Mind, and whatever actions they perform will be correct actions. Therefore, those who are wise will try to merge their minds into the Supreme Mind. That alone will be the symbol of their wisdom. When one is not sufficiently advanced one feels to perform actions with one’s own intellect; but when one is much advanced one begins thinking that one’s intellect is not sufficient for the performance of any action. This is the law of the world: that those who possess sufficient intellect say that they have none, but those who have none boast that they have a great deal. The means to have much knowledge is to understand that one has no knowledge.
“Karma Samnyása and Parábhakti”
One will not be able to know anything unless one develops the psychology of “I know not.” It is the fundamental spirit of a true aspirant.
Caryácarya II, 7