6. SIGNS OF SPIRITUAL PROGRESS :
The gradual inward progress is mostly silent and unseen, like the quiet unfolding of a bud into a flower in the hours of the night. Therefore, do not be dejected. Do not depress yourself with the idea that you are not progressing. Real spiritual progress is really and accurately measured by the peacefulness, serenity, and calmness that you manifest in waking state. You will have a healthy body and mind, the excretions will be scanty, the voice will be sweet, the face will be brilliant, the eyes will be lustrous. You will be ever calm, tranquil, and poised; you will be ever cheerful, fearless, and contented. You will be dispassionate and discriminative.
There will be no attraction for the world. Things that used to upset you before will not upset you now. You will have an unruffled mind. You will have introversion. Things that used to give you pleasure produce disgust or a reverse effect now. You will have a one-pointed, sharp, subtle mind. You will be longing to have more meditation. You will experience lights, visions, divine smell, divine taste. The idea that all forms are forms of the Lord will get stronger and stronger in you. You will feel everywhere the presence of God. You will experience the nearness of God. You will have a very steady Asana. You will develop a burning desire for selfless service.
Watch whether you are stationary in the spiritual path, retrogressing, or advancing. If your Japa, meditation or Vedantic Vichara thickens your veil and fattens your egoism, it is not then a spiritual Sadhana. Remember this point well. It is only a kind of occult practice. Watch, introspect. Practice self-analysis and kill ruthlessly this formidable egoism. This is important Sadhana. Egoism will lurk like a thief and assume various forms like a chameleon or a Bahurupi (a dramatic actor).
Do not stop the Sadhana when you get a few glimpses of realization. Continue practice till you are fully established in Bhuma, the unconditioned Brahman.
This is important. If you stop practice and move about in the world, there is every likelihood of a downfall. The reaction will be tremendous. Examples are not lacking. Numerous persons have been so ruined. A glimpse cannot give you perfect safety. Do not be carried away by name and fame. You can renounce your wife, children, parents, house, friends, and relatives. It is very, very difficult to renounce the intellectual pleasure, the pleasure from name and fame. I seriously warn you. A man who can draw happiness from the Atman within, will never care a jot for this trivial, paltry affair. The world is a mighty big thing for a worldly man. It is a straw for the Knower of Brahman. It is a mustard, a pin's point, a dot, a bubble, an airy nothing for a Brahma-jnani (Knower of Brahman). Be circumspective. Ignore all these trivial things. Be steady with your practice. Never stop the practice till the final beatitude is reached. Never cease Sadhana till you can constantly dwell in full Brahmic consciousness.
To be continued ...