Swami Atmaswarupananda, “We all know that illumination is not something to be attained from outside. It is our birthright. ‘You are That now,’ the scriptures declare. ‘You don’t realise it because of your desires. Give up your desires and it will be there.’
“Why is it, when we are told this—and we know it’s true—(yet) we don’t do what is necessary to realise it now? As an analogy, we could ask, why is it that when someone has the smoking habit and he knows that it’s not good for his health, he won’t give it up?
Or if a person is overweight and he knows that it puts him at risk for heart disease, cancer, and so many other diseases, that he won’t reduce his weight to more normal levels? It seems to be too much for them. And yet, perhaps sometime later, you discover that the person with the smoking habit has stopped, and the person who is overweight has slimmed down.
“What brought about the change? Maybe, it was because they finally became convinced of the truth they they already knew and acted upon it. Similarly, in out spiritual life, although we knew the truth, perhaps the fact is that we’re not really convinced about it, or we’re not convinced about it enough to take the necessary action at the centre of our being. We know what we have to do. We have to give up believing we can satisfaction through objects. We have to rely upon God, live for God. But are we convinced yet that that is where our happiness lies?
“If is a matter of conviction, then this is very good news and perhaps explains Swamiji’s* underlying optimism and constance assurance to us. In other words, the fundamental factor blocking us is the lack of convicition. Therefore, let us keep up our sadhana with enthusiams and interest until the conviction becomes firm and we act upon it.
“When we are so lost in samsara, we wonder how Gurudev** and Swamiji can seem to hold out so much hope for us. But if it is a matter if being absolutely convinced of the truth, then perhaps that explains their tireless efforts to convince us of it. Truly, it is good news, The rest is up to us.”
(pgs 174-175, Trust God)