What is blessedness?
God has indeed blessed everyone. The human birth is a great blessing conferred upon you by the Lord. Intelligence and the power of discrimination are further blessings which He has conferred upon you. In everyday language we hear it said that such and such a person had been blessed with a child or some such material advantage.
True, but the blessedness which Lord Jesus refers to at the very commencement of His Divine Sermon on the Mount, is something different. It is real blessedness. It is a condition in which the Spirit of God enters the heart of man, and when man is no longer of the world but is transformed into a divine being. The spiritual aspirant has been accepted by God as His own: that is real blessedness. The individuality ceases, and the glorious saint becomes, as it were, an instrument of His Handsnay, almost a part of His Being, carrying out His Will, living a Divine Life, representing Him on this earth. That is true blessedness. One who has attained to this blessedness is a blessing for humanity.
Who are the blessed?
Blessed are the poor in spirit; for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven. Poor in spirit are they that have emptied themselves of all ego. "spirited" men proud of their wealth, proud of their pedigree, proud of their learning, and proud of their wisdom have no place in the Kingdom of Heaven. What they seek truly and sincerely they shall get. But, what do they seek? They strive to get the admiration of men, popularity in the world and prosperity in terms of worldly goods. That they may get: though the fleeting nature of things mundane is sure to make them feel miserable eventually. But they that are poor in spirit, desire nothing for themselves in this world. Poverty-stricken desire dies a silent death, within them. Wisdom they have in abundance. But it has become so integrally a part of their being that they are not aware of it! When brought to their notice, they ascribe it to the Lord. They own nothing; they have nothing; they want nothing; they themselves do not exist as independent entitiesthey are His. Therefore He lives in them; and His Grace flows through them. "Theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven." What a grand reward they get from renouncing the things of this world of pain and death! The Kingdom of Heaven belongs to them. They are the owners, the rulers of the Kingdom of Heaven. Through them humanity could attain salvation.
Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. The great devotee of the Lord mourns on account of separation from Him. The zealous seeker after God mourns because lurking human weaknesses impede his attainment of perfection. This is not mourning in the usual sense of the term; there is no weeping and wailing. There is a strange joy in his mourning. There is a great yearning; there arises a powerful and sincere prayer from the bottom of the heart. It is a prayer for His Grace, for the enlightenment of the heart of human beings, and for His Redeeming Wisdom to fill the soul of every human being on earth. For, remember, the Blessed One has no possessions and has no desire; what will he mourn for? His mourning is truly a yearning; not that he wishes to achieve anything for himself, but that mankind might be blessed. "They shall be comforted": surely, it is because these blessed ones are comforted again and again that there is prosperity in the world and, in spite of so much unrighteousness, there continue to be a number of seekers after Truth, generation after generation. This is the comfort they pray for; and it is granted by the Lord. Therefore are they truly God's blessings on humanity.
Blessed are the meek; for they shall inherit the earth. Meekness is not weakness. Humility is the hall-mark of the hero. The first beatitude promised the Kingdom of Heaven to the egoless saint; now, this beatitude proclaims that the meek shall inherit the earth. He who humbly serves God and humanity; he who humbly submits to His Will and accepts everything that comes, as His Grace; he who is truly humble at heart, realising His Omnipotence, Omniscience, Omnipresencesuch a blessed one radiates blessedness. The whole world is drawn to him; for in his very presence people feel an inexpressible peace and bliss. He has no need for the earthly kingdoms nor for the things of this earth. But he rules the hearts of all human beingseven as Lord Jesus rules the hearts of the entire humanity today.
Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness; for they shall be filled. The significance is perfectly clear. But an implication is worth noting. Righteousness which is God's Will is omnipresent. God's Grace is ever ready to fill man's heart, and make him subserve His Will, thus exalting himself. But it is the egoistic self-willed man who denies Its entry into his heart. To obtain His Grace, to let His Will be done through your being, to let His Righteousness permeate your personality, is, therefore, much easier than you imagine. You have to hunger after it; you have to yearn for it. You have to evince a keen desire to become divine. You have to aspire to lead a righteous life. You have to pray to Him to fill you with Grace. This aspiration, this prayer, opens the inner gate to the chamber of your soul and it is at once flooded with His Grace. Truly blessed are they that are thus filled. For, filled with His Righteousness, they will live and move about as living monuments of the Divine Law, thus inspiring others, too, to exalt themselves and transform the very earth into paradise.
Blessed are the merciful; for they shall obtain mercy. God is all-mercy. The life-giving warmth of the sun, the life-sustaining purity of fresh air, the sparkling water which quenches your thirst and makes life possible, the good earth that yields nourishing food, besides providing you with a place to dwellthese constantly remind you that God is all-mercy. In order that you might evolve, He has given you a human birth and placed you in circumstances best suited to your temperament and calculated to accelerate your progress towards perfection. He gives you opportunities galore to exercise the divine qualities that are latent in you so that you can become perfect, even as He is Perfect. The beggar at your door; the orphan on the road; the naked, the unlettered, the hungry and the diseased children of Godthey are there to provide you chances to exercise the divine mercy in you. Open your eyes and serve them. Clothe the naked; educate the unlettered; feed the hungry and heal the diseased ones. Thus would you grow in mercy. For, God is all-mercy. When you are merciful, you will obtain His Mercy. When you have His Mercy, you are blessed indeed; and you are a blessing to mankind, for, everyone who comes in contact with you will witness the miracle of His Mercy, healing, consoling, enlightening everyone and filling the world with the light of wisdom, peace and bliss.
Blessed are the pure at heart; for they shall see God. You do not have to travel to distant lands to see God. You do not have to wait till you shed this human body and ascend to heaven in order to see God. Here and now you can see Him. And, there is only one condition prerequisitepurity of heart. The heart should be washed of all impuritieslust, anger, greed, egoism, and a host of other evils that have made your heart their home.
God is seated in your heart. But the veil of impurity hides Him from your vision. All that you have to do is to remove this veil, cast off this impurity from your heart. And you will behold Him here and now in all His Glory and in all His Splendour.
Blessed are they that thus have a vision of God. For they shall radiate His Blessings to the whole world.
Blessed are the peacemakers; for they shall be called the children of God. God created the world. He is the Father of all creation. All beings on earth are His children. The entire mankind is but one family. He who quarrels with another, he who promotes wars and disharmony between communities and nations, works contrary to this Divine Law of Unity. Whereas he who brings people together in love and harmony, who strives to establish peace on earth, and harmony among human heartshe works in unison with the Divine Law. He is therefore worthy of being called a real child of God. For, he has inherited the divine qualities of the Lord in the fullest measure.
First find the peace within thy own heart through prayer and humility. See God first and you will share His Peace. Then radiate peace to humanity. Your very presence will make for peace. You will radiate Peace. Blessed are such peacemakers for they are a boon to this world torn with strifes and wars.
Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake; for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.
Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in Heaven! for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
Saints are a blessing to humanity. They are the greatest benefactors of mankind. There is even this much of peace and happiness in the world, only because time and again the glorious saints and men-of-God have been born here on earth and re-established His righteousness on earth.
Yet, such is the tragedy of the world we live in, that these men of God are revolted against, vilified and crucified by a section of the humanity. The followers of the philosophy of the flesh, the worms that wallow in worldliness, the sensuous and senseless sons of Satan,cannot "endure" the Divine Radiance of the godly saints, even as the owl cannot endure the brilliant light of the day. Yet, such is the divine nature of these blessed saints that they are "unable" even to resist the evil, retaliate or even protect themselves from the onslaughts of the evil-minded. The history of the world is witness to numberless persecutions in which the blessed ones have laid down their lives, in an endeavour to uphold righteousness.
And, the marvel of marvels! By thus sacrificing their life to the great divine cause of righteousness, "for His sake," they have fulfilled their mission. The supreme sacrifice of their life itself is the crowning glory of their mission. The one event of self-sacrifice affects Human Mind more profoundly than all the preaching could have done: and people begin to realise that if this great and blessed man could sacrifice his very life to the principle he upheld during his lifetime, it was well worth their adherence. A near-revolution takes place in the heart of man and penitently he takes to the path of righteousness, leaving once for all the path of evil on which the life-blood of their Beloved One, the Glorious Man-of-God, was shed.
In life as well as in giving it up the saint fulfils the one great mission of re-establishing righteousness on earth. That is God's Mission. He who makes it his own is truly blessed. And, he is a blessing unto all mankind for he shows the way to God, to the fountain-source of life, light and love; of peace, plenty and prosperity.
May the choicest blessings of the Blessed Ones be upon you all! May you all become truly blessed in this very birth!