What result is forthcoming from material rest, tranquility, luxury and attachment to this corporeal world! It is evident that the man who pursues these things will in the end become afflicted with regret and loss. (‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Tablets of the Divine Plan, p. 42)
As someone recovering from PTSD, adrenal fatigue and burnout, I have to be especially careful when I read this quote, to ask God if it applies to me today. I need material rest and even tranquility to recover and yes, although this does afflict me with regret and loss, it’s still necessary for my physical and mental well-being. If I apply it today, it will be like taking antibiotics for diabetes. It’s an effective remedy under the right conditions, but not the right one for the disease.
I know that ‘Abdu’l-Bahá also achieved great things, even though He was often desperately tired. When I’m called on by God to rise above myself, I too can pray to be more like ‘Abdu’l-Bahá. Too often though, I put unrealistic expectations and artificial deadlines on myself. At those times, I’m in my will and not aligned with God’s will. I need prayers for wisdom and discernment to know the difference and when I make a mistake, I need to rely on God’s mercy, compassion and forgiveness.
The other things are easier to understand, though. If I’m attached to all the luxury this material world has to offer, I will be pursuing the wrong things. I’ll be making my material life more important than my physical one. I’ll lose the opportunity to draw closer to God and attain the virtues I’ll need in the next world. And that is definitely an important reminder.
Knowing that attachment to this material world and it’s luxuries and comforts will lead to regret and loss, I am grateful!
What jumped out for you as you read today’s meditation? I’d love it if you would share so we can all expand our knowledge of the Writings!
If you liked this meditation, you might also like my book Getting to Know Your Lower Nature