HINTS FOR SPIRITUAL WORKERS
1. Apparent descent to a lower level
It may often be necessary for you to apparently descend to the lower level of those whom you are trying to help. Though your purpose is to raise people to higher levels of consciousness, they might fail to profit by what you say if you do not talk in terms they understand. What you convey to them through your thoughts and feelings should not go over their heads. They are bound to miss the point unless you adapt it to their capacity and experience. However, it is equally important to remember that while doing this, you should not actually lose your own high level of understanding. You will change your approach and technique as they gradually arrive at deeper and deeper understanding, and your apparent descent to the lower level will be only temporary.
2. Spiritual understanding ensures all-sided progress
You must not divide life into departments and then begin to deal with each department separately and exclusively. Departmentalized thinking is often an obstacle to integral vision. Thus if you divide life into politics, education, morality, material advancement, science, art, religion, mysticism, and culture and then think exclusively of only one of these aspects the solutions that you bring to life can neither be satisfactory nor final. But if you succeed in awakening spiritual inspiration and understanding, progress in all these spheres of life is bound to follow automatically. You will have to aim at providing, as spiritual workers, a complete and real solution for all the individual and social problems of life.
3. Spiritual progress consists in the spontaneous growth of understanding from within
As spiritual workers, you have also to remember that the spiritual wisdom you desire to convey to others is already latent in them, and that you have only to be instrumental in unveiling that spiritual wisdom. Spiritual progress is not a process of accumulating from without; it is a process of unfoldment from within. A Perfect Master is absolutely necessary for anyone to arrive at Self-knowledge, but the true significance of the help given by the Master consists in the fact that he enables others to come into the full possession of their own latent possibilities.
4. Some questions are more important than answers
You, as spiritual workers, must not lose sight of the real work the Master desires to get done through you. When it is clearly understood that spiritual wisdom is latent in all, you will no longer be anxious to provide others with ready-made answers and solutions. In many cases you will be content to set up for others a new problem or to clarify for others the nature of the problems they face. You may have done your duty if you ask them a question that they would not ask of themselves, when placed in some practical situation.
In some cases you will have done your duty if you succeed in putting them in a searching and questioning attitude, so that they themselves begin to understand and tackle their problems along more fruitful and creative lines. To give them a deeper point of view or to suggest to them a fruitful line of thought and action may itself mean much more than thrusting upon them the results of your judgment.
The questions that you may help them formulate for themselves should neither be merely theoretical nor unnecessarily complicated. If they are simple, straight, and fundamental, these questions will answer themselves; and people will find their own solutions. You will have rendered indispensable and valuable service to them because, without your tactful intervention, they would not have arrived at the solution of their multifarious problems from the spiritual point of view.
DISCOURSES, 7th ed, pp. 347-348
1987 © Avatar Meher Baba Perpetual Public Charitable Trust