Qualifications of the Aspirant: Entering into the Realities of Inner Life — Realities of inner life

The soul often spends several lives in gathering the lessons of external conformity; but there always comes a time when it tires of external conformity and becomes more interested in the realities of the inner life. When a worldly person takes to this higher kind of search, he might be said to have become an aspirant. Like the insect that passes on through metamorphosis to the next stage of existence, the aspirant transcends the phase of external conformity (shariat, or karma-kanda) and enters upon the path of spiritual emancipation, known as tariqat, or adhyatma-marga. In this higher phase the aspirant is no longer satisfied by external conformity with certain rules but wants to acquire those qualifications that would make his inner life spiritually beautiful.

– Discourses 7th Ed. p351

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