The word devotion evokes different responses in people. For some, it is something that they hold above everything else in their life. For others, devotion to something gives a purpose to their life. We see it all around us – many parents are devoted to their children, some people are devoted to their work, and so on.
The thing we see is that people are devoted to something that they truly care about. This falls into three categories – devotion to someone, devotion to something as in a plant or animal, devotion to a quality as in being successful at something.
Essentially, devotion means an emotion that is devoid of one’s self, making the object of devotion become larger or more important than one’s own comfort and wants. When there is true devotion, there is no expectation of a return favor. Without the quality of devotion, emotions can get negative because the person’s needs and wants become more important than everything else. Fulfilling those wants becomes a continuous cycle and, over time, people feel trapped and unhappy. A large percentage of them don’t even realize why they are trapped and what traps them. Unless they are on the spiritual path, coming out of that trap is an arduous journey.
However, for those on the spiritual path, Devotion is placed at the highest level, because without the deep love in the heart towards one’s spiritual practice, master, or a deity there is no advancement. Try as hard as you may. Here the object of devotion is important only as long as it sustains that quality. If the quality is not there the object does not have any value for the person.
Spiritual masters place this emphasis on Devotion because it is the simplest and fastest path to Self-Realization. Of all the four dimensions of our existence – body, mind, emotion, and energy – intensifying emotion is the easiest. For example, anger comes easily to most people, and can become an intense emotion depending on how invested we are in the situation. However, for spiritual seekers who are on the path of Devotion, their emotion takes on a sweet and beautiful form, because of the constant love they feel towards their object of Devotion. There is no expectation of a response either – at least of the kind that we expect by being in love with a person. So, they experience devotion as an amplified and enhanced version of a sustained, lifelong love affair. Life for a spiritual seeker becomes utterly beautiful because their emotions have become so sweet that nothing can shake it off.
So, being in that state of Devotion is the simplest way of transforming one’s emotion from negativity to pleasantness.
Even if you are not spiritually inclined at this point in your life, living pleasantly and joyfully is a natural desire in us all. So, devotion to something that we care about without expectation of response brings that quality into our lives. Once we become aware of this, we can slowly extend this quality to every aspect of our life. To do this, awareness of one’s own emotion is key. This is the simplest way to create wonderful moments in our lives. This is “Becoming A Devotee”.
Watch this video on Devotion – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9c6U_iZ3qBg
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