Sat Nam Dear Family,
The seven steps to happiness are: Commitment, Character, Dignity, Divinity, Grace, Power to Sacrifice, and Sacrifice. You can grade yourself along this scale. It may tell you where you are, and what to focus on next. Like any really good astrologer, gemologist, yogi, seer, or numerologist can provide, a preview into the future can help traverse any future objects. As they say, 'forewarned is forearmed'. When your focus proceeds correctly past present reality, thing happens more quickly and easier. Please let me explain.
Commitment seems easy to understand. It’s not. For commitment to become real, a ‘come what may’ attitude must be maintained. No matter what, we’ll keep-up. As we Sikhs say, ‘Let the head roll before the hand is let go.’ True commitment means commitment, through all thick and thins, ups and downs. Commitment means standing strong against all challenges to our commitment.
Now, character is another story. Character is all about you. It’s about you watching yourself; judging or analyzing yourself; continuing to nourish your character beyond all challenges. Like the saying goes, ‘character is about what you think and do when you’re all alone.’ True character is realized when you realize that you’re never alone.
Dignity reflects how you represent yourself to the world. What do you stand for? What do you represent? How good an example of what you represent are you really? Dignity puts you on notice. These questions must be answered and answered through your worldly presentation. Dignity is the proving ground, the way into divinity.
Divinity reflects the example, the true example, of one who’s devotion to God is exemplified through his service to his/her true teacher, teaching, Guru, or God. Any or all will do. Divinity is when Guru ji recognizes your true and sincere sacrifice to His will. Divinity is where the great spiritual teachers reside.
Grace, ahh grace. What is meant by grace. Well, there have been volumes written on it for centuries and centuries. Let me make it simple for you. Grace is when Guru bestows His grace upon you through his love, protection, prosperity, and perpetually. Yes, you sometimes realize your good fortune, other times not so much. When you do, Infinite gratitude is bestowed. And, when you do, there’s no turning back. Life is just too much fun. You flow rather than fight through life.
Now we come to the power to sacrifice. This is the stage where most skip or don’t understand. It’s such a misunderstood and un-understood process that it’s a little bit hard to describe. Stay with me. The next and last step to happiness is sacrifice. You need the power to sacrifice to sacrifice, otherwise, frustration, impatience, jealousy, fear, anger get in the way and usually cause failure. Sacrifice isn’t easy, especially at this level. Everything you think, act, and own is required to be subject to sacrifice.
Sacrificing who you are for the reflection of Guru ji’s Will is the fuel which keeps surrendering totally continuing. The student needs the power to sacrifice in order to be able to sacrifice. This is bestowed through the grace of God. The power to sacrifice leads to a life of effortless and endless enjoyable duty, devotion and fun! In other words, it’s a life where sacrifices become more and more enjoyable. Everything that’s needed will be provided through His grace so that your sacrifice will be wonderful. Now you see the progression. The power to sacrifice is the grace to enjoyably do whatever’s required in service to God’s Will. All the wherewithal necessary to succeed with grace and ease shall be provided.
Sacrifice leads to surrender, merger, true happiness. Surrender becomes an automatic remembrance of Guru ji’s will. That’s what we surrender to. True sacrifice is when Guru ji recognized you as worthy of His Court. You become what we Sikhs call a Gurumukh, a beloved of Guru ji. Sacrifice leads to a merged thinking between your way and the way of the Guru. Guru ji knows the difference. But, when he accepts your sacrifices as real, devotional, and serviceful, God and me, me and God, are One. Now, that’s real happiness. Stay tuned,
In the Humility of Service and Gratitude,
MSS Hari Jiwan Singh Khalsa
Chief of Protocol