One of my friends has been asking: How to surrender to God?
Analyzing my friend’s background, I find that he is quite comfortable economically, running a business to his satisfaction and maintaining a reasonable health at the age of 65 years. I don’t see a situation that needs his surrendering to God. He is tempted to, because saints advocate surrendering, its importance and benefits are mentioned in the scriptures, and he has read my article: The blossoming of love after surrendering to God.
Why should one surrender to God or even to a person (spiritual teacher) when there is no compelling reason to do that? An army commander surrenders when all essential supplies are cut off and his army is surrounded by enemies. He is afraid that his army will be mercilessly butchered without the least advantage, and it will be an act of suicide to continue fighting.
Is surrendering to God like surrendering to an enemy? An intellectual surrenders to God when he is entangled in a web of philosophical speculations. Usually, a person’s ego is built up on the basis of his power of intellect, physical strength, power of money (wealth), supporters, et cetera. In absence of these supports the person falls into a pitiable condition, and that is the suitable condition in which one surrenders to God and seeks mercy and protection from Him, or commits suicide if one is a pessimist.
Is God an enemy to whom one has to surrender? Yes, as long as one’s sailing in society is smooth, one hardly cares for Him. A corrupt official is aware of his misdeeds but he convinces himself with his fictitious justifications. But, when he is caught red handed he immediately pleads for mercy, or may try to run away from the scene, or even commit suicide.
Hence, surrendering to God is possible only in utmost helplessness and a condition of extreme disgust. The situation has to arrive in a natural way; at our own we can not create it. Perhaps, we cannot desire even such a situation which will prompt us to do real surrendering. Mostly, man cruises well on the basis of his cunning nature, physical strength, wealth and associates. As long as any of these is available to him he won’t feel helpless. If surrendering is desired sincerely it will certainly happen, automatically, in the last moments of one’s life, because at that moment all our possessions including the body and relationships come to an end.
Therefore, surrendering to God may happen in the following helpless situations:
- If one is entangled in a situation (may be due to physical, mental, environmental settings) from which there is no escape and that is solved by God or a Spiritual Teacher (in Hinduism God and a Spiritual Teacher are considered the same),
- Fear of losing one’s life, prestige, or just sustenance,
- Being devoid of real (not physical) love in life,
- Fulfillment of a most desirable but seemingly impossible ambition, miraculously,
- Mental disgust, et cetera.
Surrendering to God always results in devotion to Him because He takes utmost care of the surrendering soul thereafter and elevates its position in spirituality (resulting in peace and pleasure of mind). Situations are created now and then to refresh the spirit of surrender till it is implanted in the devotee’s subconscious mind.
Thus, real spirituality is taught by God, or His representative as a spiritual teacher, who is a living entity of perfect knowledge and unwavering devotion.
SP Sharma, India