Who and What Is Satan?
Many modern scriptural interpreters, unable to solve the problem of how it was possible for evil to originate in God, who is only good, have gone to the extreme of denying the existence of evil.
There was a time when I believed that Satan was a figment of the mind, but now I know from personal experience and add my testimony to that of Jesus Christ and countless others that Satan exists, and is responsible for the creation of evil on earth and in the minds of men. He is a universal, conscious force whose sole aim is to keep mankind bound to delusion. Many times I have seen Satan trying to obstruct me by mysterious misfortunes, and by taking on materialized forms.
Satan is part of God’s drama
Philosophically, Satan represents the outward flowing creative force which brings creation into manifestation. Without Satan, there would be no creation; no universe; no cosmic drama.
Satan is necessary to God’s drama, just as the villain is necessary in a stage play to personify evil. Without the villain, we might not feel the necessary incentive to love the hero, who represents the good. Similarly, evil and its painful after-effects are meant to awaken in us love for goodness and God.
Both evil and good exist only in the realm of maya, of duality. God is beyond them both. God could destroy Satan in a minute, but He would be going against His own laws if He did so. God knew that some evil would result from His creation, but He also knew that the power of love was stronger than the lures of evil, so He is trying by love to draw us back to Him and away from the influence of Satan.
The origin of all evil
Some intellectuals, while not denying the existence of evil, claim that evil does not originate in an objective power such as Satan, but arises when man yields to temptation and, by his repeated transgressions over many incarnations, creates in himself evil habits. According to this view, evil is wholly man’s fault and neither God nor any conscious evil power is responsible for the evil in the world. This viewpoint asserts that evil is wholly subjective, originating in the bad judgment of man.
This viewpoint fails to answer many questions. Why do millions of bacteria and virulent armies of germs move silently about the earth seeking to destroy human lives? Why do millions die by floods and cataclysms? It does not seem possible that the ten million people who perished in the 1931 flood and famine in China all suffered that fate due to past actions in previous lives. Think also of the innumerable diseases which infest plants and animals who have no free choice and who, consequently, could not attract evils due to bad karma.
The eternal warfare of bacteria, germs and diseases, and the unceasing upheavals and cataclysms in Nature, distinctly show that there is an evil force trying to thwart the efforts of the Infinite Good to express His infinite goodness throughout creation. Knowledge of an objective Satan explains the origin of all evil, which cannot be explained by the individual or collective subjective ignorance of man. Satan can work as wrong subjective consciousness in man, or he can become the objective evil in Nature.
Remember: the conscious evil force of Satan could not influence human minds if they did not allow it. It is therefore better to know all the lures of evil and the ways to combat them than to blindly deny their existence. Knowledge only, not indifference, can produce final emancipation from the lures of Satan.
The two realms of conscious cosmic energy
The two distinct realms of conscious cosmic energy, the heavenly and the satanic, can be found within the human body and throughout all space. In the human body, the heavenly region extends from the heart center up to the Christ center at the point between the eyebrows. The satanic region — the region of the senses and man’s lower instincts – is located in the three lower centers below the heart. People who do not meditate find their consciousness falling from the heavenly region of the brain down to the region of the senses, rendering them vulnerable to the lures of Satan.
There are also two vast rivers of consciousness that flow through the universe, one of them heavenly, the other satanic. All good is organized by God, His angels, and the enlightened masters sent to earth to awaken in humanity love of goodness and God. All evil is organized by Satan, who uses a vast horde of evil spirits to carry on his cosmic campaign of wickedness. To the ordinary man, Satan appears as subjective temptation subtly luring him according to the quality of his thoughts and feelings.
Patterns of good and evil
Do not deny the existence of an objective evil power, but become aware of the destructive patterns of evil as temptation within yourself and as imperfection and strife in Nature. We find that Jesus, whose knowledge was born of intuition, did not deny this evil. Jesus spoke of a conscious Satan who lured Him to the wilderness and tempted Him with destructive patterns of evil arrayed side by side with the good patterns of God.
What are those good and evil patterns? They are manifestations of duality, or the outward flowing cosmic energy that brought creation into existence. Thus, for every good pattern created by God, Satan has created a corresponding pattern of evil. For love and forgiveness, Satan has created hatred and revenge. For wisdom, Satan has created ignorance. For calmness, fearlessness, unselfishness, peace, and happiness, Satan has created restlessness, fear, selfishness, anger, and sorrow.
Man stands in the middle, with God on one side and Satan on the other side, each ready to pull him in whichever direction he wishes to go. Conscience, the voice of God, always beckons you to do what’s right. Temptation, the voice of Satan, coaxes you to do wrong.
Remember that you are a free agent endowed with free will, and that Satan can only influence you when you allow yourself to yield to his temptations. Strengthen your consciousness of goodness, and in its light drive away the darkness of evil. Perfect self-honesty and dynamic self-effort will help you eliminate forever the influence of satanic delusion in your life.
Meditation—the way out
Meditation is the only way to escape permanently the net of satanic delusion and to return to your true home in God. No matter how busy you are with work or other affairs, strive always to enter the inner silence to attune yourself with God. Contact with God through meditation reminds the soul of the unending fulfillment of bliss and destroys all seeds of earthly desires.
Make it a point always to keep your most important engagement: your daily appointment with the Lord. Twice daily, enter the inner silence. Worship God on the altar of the dawn. At the day’s end, sit quietly in the temple of the night; let darkness conceal you from the distractions of the day. Meditate deeply if you would know God.
When one goes into deep samadhi (oneness with Spirit) one perceives Spirit as the only Reality, the only eternal substance existing. Then you know that only ever-new, ever-joyous Spirit exists and that Satan is a delusion. Before attaining this exalted state, one must acknowledge the existence of duality. God and Satan are facts, even if the latter exists only in delusion and not in reality.
Freedom comes not by uttering wheedling prayers, but by attuning oneself deeply with the all-loving Inner Silence. When the influence of Satan is completely terminated in the soul, the liberated devotee finds only the presence of ever-existing, ever-conscious, ever-new bliss. All evil disappears as forgotten shadows from the consciousness of the illumined devotee.
There is no eternal punishment
People do not intentionally love to be evil. They are evil because they do not know the greater fulfillment of good habits and are unable to compare and select the best. As soon as man realizes that evil promises happiness and results only in unhappiness, he begins to wish for emancipation and for God. This wish for goodness and freedom serves as a portal through which God is again invited to come into the life of the prodigal son and lead him to the abode of freedom.
Even fathomless evil cannot destroy man’s soul, for he is essentially immortal and eternally good. If man continuously listens to the whisperings of conscience within himself and gets used to better ways of living, he ultimately discovers the eternal good in him and that he is made in the image of God, and thus becomes liberated.
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