A friend writes:
"Regarding your suggested cure of malaria by Ramanama, my problem is that I do
not understand how to rely on a spiritual force for my physical ailments. I am
also not sure if I deserve to be cured and if I am justified in praying for my
salvation, when there is so much misery amongst my countrymen. The day I
understand Ramanama, I shall pray for their salvation. Otherwise, 1 would feel
more selfish than I do today."
This is from a friend whom I believe to be an earnest seeker of truth. I take public
notice of his difficulty, as it is typical of that of many like him.
Spiritual force is like any other force at the service of man. Apart from the fact that,
it has been used for physical ailments for ages, with more or less success, it
would be intrinsically wrong' not to use it, if it can be successfully used for
the cure of physical ailments. For, man is both matter and spirit, each acting
on and affecting the other. If you get rid of malaria by taking quinine, without
thinking of the millions who do not get it, why should you refuse to use the
remedy which is within you, because millions will not use it through their
ignorance? May you not be clean and well because millions of others will not be
so, ignorantly or, maybe even cussedly ? If you will not be clean out of false
notions of philanthropy, you will deny yourself the duty of serving the very
millions by remaining dirty and ill. Surely refusal to be spiritually well or
clean is worse than the refusal to be physically clean and well.
Salvation is nothing more and nothing less than being well in every way. Why should you
deny it for yourself, if thereby you show the way to others and beyond showing
it, actually serve them in addition by reason of your fitness? But you are
wholly selfish, when you take penicillin in order to get well, although you have
the certain knowledge that the others cannot get it.
The confusion lying behind my correspondent's argument is obvious.
What, however, is true is that the taking of a pill or pills of quinine is much easier
than gaining the knowledge of the use of Ramanama. It involves much effort as
against the mere cost of buying quinine pills.
The effort is worth making for the sake of the millions, in whose name and on whose
behalf my correspondent will shut Rama out of his heart.