Life is a roller coaster. Good days and then a sudden steep plunge and you feel there is no hope. We feel lost. We find there is no where to go. Initially we turn to friends and our logic but we find that friends really cant solve things. Neither can family. They can give supportive words, encouraging words.
Then we turn to religion. Go to temples. Try doing Mantras. In our desperation, we are ready to turn to any religion or faith. We just want our problems to go away. But yet the problems dont end. It is then that we turn to God. Make promises not to make the same mistakes. Cry and implore to God. And at this point, all we can do is silently wait.
This is the point of testing your faith. Can we truly believe in God? Is God real or just a belief in something abstract and have that belief help us? We want some sort of proof, reassurance. We really want to believe, but God remains silent. What kind of a God is that?
What do we do?
This is the perfect situation, where a living Guru can help significantly. He can give reassurance, solve the issue. If he chooses not to help, it still is the best for you. But such a Guru is in the minimum a trikal darshi (someone who can see past present and future). They dont show this. However many times just telling them about your problems, often alleviates the problem.
What do you do if your perfect Guru is not present physically? Nothing such a Guru can still help.
This relation of disciple and Guru is only valid, if you met the Guru while he had a physical presence and you established a Guru – disciple relation. If you were not firm in that relation, if you had doubts, then that would be a failure on your part.
The next best thing to do is then go to a Samadhi of a divine Guru. There are a few like that in India. Gyaneshwar Maharaj Samadhi is one. Shirdi Sai baba is another. Shankaracharya Samadhi. Jesal and Toral Samadhi. Of course there are others, but you have to find them on your own
Other 2 options are Siddpeetha. These are places where Shakti is vibrant and alive. Sadhan Shhikhar in Madhya Pradesh, (city of Dewas). Ambaji is another place. Badrinath, Kedarnath.All of the Jyotirlinga (12 of them) where Shiv appeared in the physical form
Yet even to get to those places maybe a challenge. Then what do we do?
There are prescribed mantras to help with some life situations. Doing it in a certain number or hearing it from someone who has accomplished it, helps a lot. However, when you do the mantras, there are many rules to be followed. You should do them yourself, if possible. Sit in the same room. You are not permitted to eat outside your house. Especially not at anyone house, even a friend. This list is incomplete. But this can help. This is a quick way to get proof of existence of God and bring in faith. (doing it with constant remembrance of a great liberated soul who has taken Samadhi)
Even if all this fails, your mind still has doubts, what do you do? Read scriptures like Upanishad. These scriptures can give us courage and faith. One of the books I found very helpful is The Divine Romance from Yogananda. Other times, reading about the courage of Vivekananda gave me courage. This renewed enthusiasm and courage helped a long way.
What is there to fear? If you do not get the help that is needed, the shame is on Shakti and the great Saints. It is not your failure. However, you must be genuine in your effort, very sincere and willing to work hours or days in surrendering to God. If you do things half hearted, how can you get success? If you dig multiple small holes will you get water? If you go through digging for a well and stop half way will you get water. Once you start, finish off the digging until God responds. He has to respond. That is an absolute must. Do not give up. Pray with one pointedness, relentlessly, till God is shaken up. Have love, a demanding love which a child has.
I hope this helps. I am no stranger to the challenges of life, which everyone faces. My hardships havve been quite significant. No one ever knew it. I am merely telling you what I did. Dont give excuses – God cannot distinguish between one soul or another, neither can he play favorites. Sinner or pure, all the same for him
Having said that, the reason why the mind cannot have absolute faith immediately is from our own Karma. The karma that we did, especially not respecting someone who is a true Guru or Saint is significant. That karma leaves our mind in a darkness shrouded with doubt and fear. Please be careful in the presence of such people.
Lastly, resort to astrology. it will give an idea when the difficulties are likely to end. Good times dont last forever and neither do bad times. Certain stones may help also.
I hope this blog can give you a guide when the times are difficult.