This withdrawal from the day's turmoil into creative silence is not a luxury, a fad, or a futility. It is a necessity, because it tries to provide the conditions wherein we are able to yield ourselves to intuitive leadings, promptings, warnings, teachings, and counsels and also to the inspiring peace of the soul. It dissolves mental tensions and heals negative emotions.
As his mind becomes purer and his emotions come under control, his thoughts become clearer and his instincts truer. As he learns to live more and more in harmony with his higher Self, his body's natural intuition becomes active of itself. The result is that false desires and unnatural instincts which have been imposed upon it by others or by himself will become weaker and weaker and fall away entirely in time. This may happen without any attempt to undergo an elaborate system of self-discipline on his part: yet it will affect his way of living, his diet, his habits. False cravings like the craving for smoking tobacco will vanish of their own accord; false appetites like the appetite for alcoholic liquor or flesh food will likewise vanish; but the more deep-seated the desire, the longer it will take to uproot it--except in the case of some who will hear and answer a heroic call for an abrupt change.
In the heart's deepest place, where the burden of ego is dropped and the mystery of soul is penetrated, a man finds the consciousness there not different in any way from what all other men may find. The mutuality of the human race is thus revealed as existing only on a plane where its humanness is transcended. This is why all attempts to express it in political and economic terms, no less than the theosophic attempts to form a universal brotherhood, being premature, must be also artificial. This is why they failed.
The mysterious manner in which this growing sense of unity commingles with a sense of utter goodness is worth noting. It arises by no effort of mine; rather does it come to me out of I know not where. Harmony appears gradually and flows through my whole being like music. An infinite tenderness takes possession of me, smoothing away the harsh cynicism which a reiterated experience of human ingratitude and human treachery has driven deeply into my temperament. I feel the fundamental benignity of Nature despite the apparent manifestation of ferocity. Like the sounds of every instrument in an orchestra that is in tune, all things and all people seem to drop into the sweet relationship that subsists within the Great Mother's own heart.
Among the values of meditation is that it carries consciousness down to a deeper level, thus letting man live from his centre, not his surface alone. The result is that the physical sense-reactions do not dominate his outlook wholly, as they do an animal's. Mind begins to rule them. This leads more and more to self-control, self-knowledge, and self-pacification.
The seeker after stillness should be told that the stillness is always there. Indeed it is in every man. But he has to learn, first, to let it in and, second, how to do so. The first beginning of this is to remember. The second is to recognize the inward pull. For the rest, the stillness itself will guide and lead him to itself.
When spiritual seeking becomes too complicated, its exercies too elaborated, its doctrines too esoteric, it becomes also too artificial and the resulting achievements too fabricated. It is the beginners and intermediates who carry this heavy and unnecessary burden, who involve themselves to the point of becoming neurotics.