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Reply to "From joy all creatures are born, by joy they are sustained, toward joy they progress…"


Rabindranath brings his series of realizations to a period with his pages on the mystery of love. "Who could have breathed or moved if the sky were not filled with joy, with love?" The soul is on a pilgrimage: it is traveling from the law, which assigns its relative place in the moral order, to love, which is its moral freedom. Buddha named this infinite love Brahma Vihara-"the joy of living in Brahma." And he taught that whoever would attain to it must purge himself from hatred, and the malice of deceit, and the rage of injury. The free spirit was he who could have measureless love for all creatures-even as a mother has it for her only child.

The light within, the little ether in the heart, is continually flowing out to join the light without: it is the water-drop going to the sea, the child to the mother, the eye to the sun. Thus is fulfilled the circle of realizations. "From joy are born all creatures, by joy they are sustained, toward joy they progress, and into joy they enter." With this perfecting of the circle of delight our whole being dilates; a luminous consciousness of the far greater world about us enters the soul, and obsesses it. Then it is, indeed, that our spirit finds its larger self, and becomes sure it is immortal. "It dies a hundred times in its enclosures of self; for separateness is doomed to die, it cannot be made eternal. But it never can die where it is one with the all." There is the secret of that persuasion of immortality, which is instinctive in most of us, with the instinct of life itself and the obstinate desire for its perpetuity. Now convert the term of joy into love, and you have the lyric formula complete, which was behind the songs of the Vaishnava poets and is behind those of Gitanjali. "From love the world is born, by love it is sustained, toward love it moves, and into love it enters."

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