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Spiritual exercises like worship (puja), adoration (bhajan), meditation (dhyana) are activities prompted by devotion (bhakthi) to higher powers. Controversy about their efficacy should not be indulged in by those who are unaware of the depths and heights to which they can lead. These can be gained and judged only through actual practice. The proof lies in one's personal experience only.

The longing for the supersensory spiritual life (Paramaarthika Jivan) is aroused in the seeker, either by a quest for fundamental principles or by the felt need for lasting joy. Mere longing will not grant success. Spiritual exercise (sadhana) has to be undertaken. It is important also to examine oneself and assess in detail one's aspirations and attitudes before embarking on the process. For, contemporary religions which profess to guide seekers in this task do not infuse confidence in the youth. They feel that some of these have been shaped by the conditions of the era in which they emerged. Many have become outdated. Some are specifically linked with regions or states. Some have been imposed and moulded by foreign peoples. And some strike them as indecent and injurious. Young aspirants for higher life feel they will be ridiculed if they practise them. So, they indulge in incessant talk and turning over the pages of thousands of books! They stay away even from the first step of Sadhana as prescribed in any of the many religions. Such are the critics and controversialists who relish the confusion they create.

Far more valuable than the scholarship gathered from a million books is the grain of wisdom gained through a session of meditation. That flash (Jnana), however slight, is a precious acquisition. It is the product of personal Sadhana and indisputable authentic experience. As one cultivates and develops this grain of wisdom, controversy and criticism will cease. All arguments will be with one's lower self only until the Truth stands revealed. Self-confidence is essential for a person to enter on this path of spiritual practice. Next