I travelled, once, on a cruise ship, and you know what that is like: the only thing that matters is to keep the passengers from being bored! So, there are countless bars and swimming pools, dances, films and endless games and concerts. Since the opportunity offered, I was interested to see what life on board ship was like, but I was staggered to see all the different kinds of entertainment that were available all day and all night!
Life on a cruise ship is quite an accurate illustration of the mentality of most human beings, who are always looking for new ways of amusing themselves. As no one has ever revealed to them that they possess inner faculties and powers which, if awakened – and it is in their power to awaken them – would transform their existence and bring them peace, freedom and happiness, they are always looking for happiness from outside themselves; the result is that they are often disappointed.
As long as you rely on the world outside, you will always be disappointed. Every now and then you will feel that you have something to hold on to, and then, very shortly after, you will be left grasping emptiness: everything has faded away. Human beings are constantly seeking fulfilment, but they do not know that they must look for it within themselves.
Many of you still waste your time and energy on activities which you believe to be necessary to your happiness – but I very much doubt that they are! You will probably tell me that you know people who have absolutely no intellectual or artistic needs, and even less, any spiritual needs; that they get along very well with purely physical pleasures. Yes, of course; I know many people like that, myself.
But what you don’t realize is that those people, however crude and unfinished they may be today, come from the same workshops as the greatest geniuses, the greatest Initiates. It is not yet time for them to manifest the same gifts and virtues, but that time will come.
One day, they, too, will seek immensity, abundance, the Deity. One day, they, too, will understand that the objects and activities of the material plane are only necessary as a support, a vessel, an envelope to sustain, shelter or contain the divine life, the life of the spirit. And when they begin to understand that what they took for the real thing was only the wrapping, and that the essential core of things had been hidden from them, their way of looking at things will change.
Yes, this is what counts: their way of looking at things. They will stop looking only at the containers and start taking an interest in the contents. Or perhaps, as they will have let the contents escape from the containers, they will start filling them up again and this will be the beginning of true life for them. You must never value the container more than the contents; on the other hand you must not neglect or destroy it either, otherwise the contents will spill out and be lost.