​Once you know, what is the point of belief?

TRUST IS WHEN DOUBT DISAPPEARS
Thus I have heard an anecdote.

A certain lady, Lady Lewis, was appointed ambassador to Italy by the United States of America. She was a recently converted Catholic, and, of course, when people become converted, they are very enthusiastic. And she was boring everybody. Whosoever she came into contact with, she would try and make him a Catholic. The story goes that when she went to Italy as the ambassador, she went to see the Pope. A long discussion followed — it went on and on. A press reporter slipped closer and closer, just to hear what was going on. The Pope had never given so much time to anybody, and the discussion seemed to be very heated and hot. Something was going on. When the Pope talks so long to the ambassador of the richest and the strongest nation in the world, there is going to be some news. Just to overhear, he came closer and closer. He could hear only one sentence. The Pope was saying in a faltering English, “Lady, you don’t understand me. I am already a Catholic!”

She was trying to convert the Pope!

If somebody comes and says to you, “Believe in the sun,” you will say, “I am already a Catholic. I already believe. You don’t be worried about it.” In that case one creates the false airs and aura of having attained the ultimate Knowing. This is the trap that many gifted believers and seekers find themselves in, even the most prominent among them. Mere belief brings complacency to attain greater realizations.

Somebody asked Sri Aurobindo, “Do you believe in God?” He said, “No.” Of course the questioner was very shocked. He had come from far away, from Germany, and he was a great seeker of God and he was hoping for much. Then this man simply says a flat no. He said, “But I was thinking that you have known him.” Aurobindo said, “Yes, I have known him, but I don’t believe in him.”

Once you know, what is the point of belief? Belief is in ignorance. If you know, you know. And it is good that if you don’t know, know that you don’t know—the belief can deceive you. The belief can create an atmosphere in your mind, where, without knowing, you start thinking that you know. Belief is not trust, and the more strongly you say that you believe totally, the more you are afraid of the doubt within you. On the other hand, trust knows no doubt. Belief is just a subtle way for repressing doubt; it is a desire. When you say, ‘I believe in God,’ you say, ‘I cannot live without God. It will be too difficult to exist in this darkness, surrounded by death, without a concept of God.’ That concept helps. One doesn’t feel alone; one doesn’t feel unprotected, insecure—hence belief.

Martin Luther wrote, ‘My God is a great fortress.’ These words cannot come from a man who trusts. ‘My God is a great fortress’? Martin Luther seems to be on the defensive. Even God is just a fortress to protect you, to make you feel secure? Then it is out of fear. The thinking that ‘God is my greatest fortress’, is born out of fear, not out of love. It is not of trust. Deep down there is doubt and fear. Trust is simple. It is just like a child trusts in his mother. It is not that he believes — belief has not yet entered. You were a small child once. Did you believe in your mother or did you trust her? The doubt has not arisen so what is the question of belief? Belief comes only when the doubt has entered; doubt comes first. Later on, to suppress the doubt, you catch hold of a belief. Trust is when doubt disappears; trust is when doubt is not there.

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