In the Discourses, a long string of chapters on all the various forms of Meditation and Sadhanas, is concluded with “In most cases it is only when the aspirant is driven to realize the futility of all his efforts that he approaches the Master.” He then adds that “Spiritual advancement is a succession of one surrender after another until the goal of the final surrenderance of the separate ego-life is completely achieved.” He concludes with “The last surrender is the only complete surrenderance.” Baba makes it clear that on the spiritual path, surrender is not optional—but integral.
In fact, in his poem ‘Love, Obedience, & Surrender’ Baba puts Surrender above obedience and even love saying “Greater than love is obedience, greater than obedience is surrender.” He explains that:
Love seeks union with the Beloved
Obedience seeks to please the Beloved
Surrender seeks nothing.
This last line has baffled me for the past 25 years. Is Baba saying that Surrender no longer seeks union with the Beloved? Is he saying that Surrender doesn’t even want to please the Beloved? Yes he is. How can this be? What happened to seeking union with God? What happened to ‘intense longing’ for God? What happened to living for God & dying for God? How can Surrender not even want to please God? But the truth of the matter is undeniable. Surrender simply no longer seeks. It actually wants nothing, not even God-realization—at all!?!?!!
Baba says that Surrender knows nothing but the will of the Beloved. Surrender is not at all trying to do (or even engage) in the will of the Beloved—as is the case with love & obedience. Instead, Surrender is the realization that God’s will is all that ever happens. Surrender knows that perfection is all that can occur. It knows that God’s will (to the degree of no less than infinite precision) is what happens. It knows that there is no such thing as individual free-will. Surrender is a by-product of assimilating into one’s world view ‘revealed truths’ like this quote from Baba:
There is no free will. Everything is in accordance with the working out of one’s own sanskaras, and even this depends on the preordained plan set in execution with the emergence of the original whim of God, which gave the original urge to know ‘Who am I?’ It is the primal impression that works itself out as one’s destiny and as apparent free will. Thus, in fact, there is no free will.
No one who believes in ‘free-will’ can even begin to approach Surrender. Surrender is not the giving up of one’s will, nor is it the conforming of one’s will to God’s will. Instead it is knowing that one never had autonomous free-will to begin with. Surrender has already come to grips with the fact that God is the only doer—that God’s will IS the only will in play with Zero wiggle room. One surrenders because one has come to assimilate clearly that:
Man, as a separative consciousness, has neither independent reality or independent power. In himself he is nothing and is, in the last analysis, entirely helpless.
But just because one sees clearly one’s helplessness, and sees that one has no free-will doesn’t mean that one doesn’t still want union with God? How is it possible that Surrender wants nothing? In my case, for example, I don’t believe we have any free-will at all. But this doesn’t mean I don’t want union with God as soon as possible—and as painlessly as possible. Thus for me the real question became, ‘how does one get to that place where one no longer seeks anything—period—like Surrender does?’
The answer to this question was most shocking. Baba says in ‘The Nothing and the Everything” the following:
Until Everything awakened fully (infinitely)
and asked itself, “WHO AM I?”
and answered, “I AM GOD,”
the states of Infinite Consciousness
and Infinite Unconsciousness were not established
and creation did not begin.
This statement makes clear that until Everything (& everyone) was fully awakened to the “I AM GOD” state, creation did not even begin. Creation did not even begin until everyone was already realized. I know this sounds crazy. It is definitely not an easy pill to swallow. However, it does satisfy the question of how it might be that Surrender can actually want nothing. Surrender no longer seeks because there is nothing left to seek. It has nothing to do because it knows that nothing was left undone. In other words, it knows that God already finished it. In the final conclusion of the Lotus Sutra, which is the last & final teaching the Buddha gave, to the shock of his disciples, the Buddha declares the same thing:
This is the final punchline, the conclusion of the Lotus Sutra.
Kae 개 (皆) : this word means “absolutely everything” = all souls = every sentient being
Ey 이 (已): this word means “in the past” = already
Song 성 (成): this word means “achieved” = accomplished = completed = finished
Bul-Do 불도 (佛道): this word means “became Buddha” = God-realized.
“The realization of all souls has already been completed.”
This teaching, according to the Buddha, is the Highest possible Teaching. In the Lotus Sutra he declares himself, not as a teacher, but as a father, who loved his children enough that he ALREADY accomplished the realization of all of his children even before creation began. In other words, our Father(Baba) loved us so much that utilizing his infinite knowledge & capabilities already gave all of us God-realization in an instant before creation even began. The Truth is already completed (in accomplished form) in us. Here’s a Zen Koan to help sink this in.
By the time the thunderclap of realization is felt,
The flash of lightning had already struck and gone.
Baba tells us that the best reason for loving God is for no reason at all. Every reason we have for loving God can be deducted from our sincerity. The belief that ‘God already finished it’ leaves us with absolutely nothing to gain by loving Him. It is only when we have nothing to gain by loving God that we can come to love him ‘as he should be loved’. God should be loved for only the best reason—and that reason is for no reason at all. Surrender wants nothing because God, our Beloved already finished it. My future God-realized self is already there sitting next to Baba with a bag of popcorn watching ‘my life’ which is nothing but a rerun of an infinitely short movie He already finished. When Baba tells us that ‘nothing is happening, nothing has happened, and nothing will ever happen,’ he is telling us that his will is already Done—as in “thy will be Done.”—Finished before it even started!
Again, in ‘The Nothing and the Everything’ Baba says:
In this way, the nothingness of the Original Nothing
(mother hen) protected and guided the First Drop
(protecting and guiding each drop thereafter)
to know The Real Nothing, Nirvan,
to instantly become The Real Everything, Nirvakalp.
Accepting this ‘revealed truth’ IS Surrender. Surrender wants nothing because there is nothing left to want. Surrender is the complete assimilation of ‘He finished it’ into one’s worldview. Then the heart, in a sudden surge of inexpressible gratitude, spontaneously springs forth with love for God—as he should be loved, which is for no possible gain—for no reason at all—the best reason for loving God.
This essay is a presentation of my world view as a specimen for your examination. As always, I maintain that I could be wrong about absolutely everything.