Radhanath Swami: Through Practice We Develope Our Inherent Abilities
A little child wants to walk, but first the child has to learn to crawl. Do you remember when you were learning to crawl? It was very difficult. When you had finally learned to crawl you saw everyone around you walking, and you wanted to be like them!
So you tried to walk, and your father, your mother held your finger. You fell down. Every time you tried to walk you kept falling down. But through the process of practice you gradually developed the strength and the wisdom to walk. And now how many of you think about it when you are walking? This is absolutely natural! But to come to that natural spontaneous state of walking, you actually took a lot of failed attempts. But you didn’t give up?
So similarly, we chant the holy names, we try to live a spiritually devotional life, and it may be difficult at times. But if we just keep trying sincerely, and try to associate with people and read sacred books that give us strength, then gradually wisdom and realization will come. And then spiritual life is just like walking. It becomes natural to us.
The reason the child is able to learn to walk is because the ability is inherent within him or her. If the ability to walk was not inherent within the child it would never be able to learn walking. But through practice we develop our inherent abilities. And that is the way of spiritual life too. To become peaceful and happy and to take shelter of the holy name even amid trying circumstances is actually inherent within the soul. But it takes practice. And along with practice, two qualities are very important: perseverance and patience. We must be enthused to persevere. But it may take some time. So we must persevere with patience. – Radhanath Swami