Meditation is to the mind what sunshine and air are to plants—the necessity for growth. Earth and water alone will not produce plants, learning and memorizing alone will not give wisdom; into the inner chambers of the mind the sunshine and air of the spiritual world must penetrate, and he who can throw open those portals consciously has learned a great lesson. Let us continue the analogy: only those plants which are firmly rooted below the surface can bear unharmed the forces of nature in her wild moods, the tender slips just sending out a weak shoot must be shielded, and the practical gardeners realize this. Are the Masters of Wisdom less thoughtful? In books of eastern scriptures we read:—
"If one of evil life turn in his thought
Straightly to Me, count him amidst the good;
He hath the highway chosen."
The good thought is, perhaps, not strong enough to keep the mind occupied for long; let it grow, it will attract other thoughts, actions will follow, and "the wicked will forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thought."
"A man who desires to live must eat his food himself; this is the simple law of nature, which applies also to the higher life."
If meditation is to be useful it must be fruitful, and we can tell how far we are illuminated with wisdom by the effect it has upon our lives. When food nourishes the physical body there is good digestion, and when the mind is fed by meditation "the winter of our discontent" is "made glorious summer." Open the cage door and the bird-soul will learn to use its wings. The One Being loves to hear the flutter of the bird wings when the shell of ignorance is broken through, and never again can the free creature be forced back into its prison house.
If we have ever consciously felt ourselves part of the one life it is a law of our spiritual nature that we must seek it more and more. If we can bear the bracing wind on the hill-tops we return to daily duties invigorated; if our minds can fearless face the problems of human life, if we are sure there is a meaning in the seeming hardships and trials we constantly find, we shall meet them bravely. Some will say "I dare not think of these things, madness lies this way." How can that soul know peace?
—Hope La Galliene