A devotee, Shri G. Lakshman once asked Swami, "What is the use of the form of God, when I can experience God directly, once I come to know His qualities?" Swami replied to his question by a spontaneous discourse in the two parts given below. Shri G. Lakshman is an excellent devotee who is literally crazy for divine knowledge. When he hears divine knowledge from Swami, he forgets to eat or sleep. He donates lot of money for the propagation of this divine knowledge in the service of Lord Datta. Recently Swami gave him a vision of Lord Ananta Padmanabha for a long time and Shri Lakshman was immersed in the infinite bliss for several days.
Let us assume that Parabrahma (God) is fire. The qualities of Parabrahma like knowledge, bliss and love put together, can be assumed as the heat. Also let us assume the human incarnation to a wire.
Now unless you have experience (by your senses), you cannot have any knowledge. However, Vedas, Sastras and logic should also support the experience. Otherwise a mad person may experience some false thing, which cannot be taken as a standard. Thus when you get experience, which is supported by the Vedas, Sastras and logic, it becomes real knowledge.
If you wanted to experience fire along with its heat directly, you would be turned to ashes and disappear. Similarly when the God fully expresses Himself along with His qualities, the whole world disappears; you too disappear. When you do not exist, there is no question of getting any knowledge. Thus you can never experience Parabrahma (God) directly; you cannot have the knowledge of Parabrahma at any cost. The Parabrahma is beyond your imagination. Therefore through the egoistic path consisting only of knowledge (Jnana yoga), you can neither experience the fire nor experience the heat. You are totally lost.
But if you can get rid of your egoism and jealousy and if you can accept the human incarnation, at least you can experience the qualities of God; even if you cannot experience fire directly, at least you can experience heat. When one end of a wire is put in fire, the fire as if enters the wire. When you touch the other end of the wire you experience the heat safely, without getting burnt. What is fire after all? Fire is nothing but infinitely intensified heat. When fire enters the wire the fire is hidden in the wire but it radiates just enough heat through the wire so that you may experience heat without being burnt to ashes. By experiencing the little heat that you get from the wire, you can imagine the infinite intensity of that heat and thus you can imagine fire. The wire controls the intensity of heat so that you can 'experience' fire.
All you have to do is that once you experience heat, you have to multiply it infinitely in your mind and that brings the experience of fire to your brain. If you try to experience fire directly, then even before you experience its heat you will just be vaporized, in which situation there cannot be any experience or knowledge. Thus the fire has arranged this 'wire technique' so that you can experience its quality of heat, within your limits and thereby imagine even the infiniteness of that heat, which is fire.
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