SOME Sikhs said to me in front of the Kali temple, "God is compassionate". I said, "To whom is he compassionate?" '"Why revered sir, to all of us", said the Sikhs. I said: "We are His children. Does compassion to one's own children mean much? A father must look after his children; or do you expect the people of the neighbourhood to bring them up? Well, won't those who say that God is compassionate ever understand that we are God's children and not someone else's?"
Should we not, then, address God as compassionate? Of course we should, as long as we practise sadhana. After realizing God, one rightly feels that God is our Father or Mother. As long as we ha\e not realized God, we feel that we are far away from Him, children of someone else.
During the stage of sadhana one should describe God by all His attributes. One day Hazra said to Narendra: "God is Infinity. Infinite is His splendour. Do you think He will accept your offerings of sweets and bananas or listen to your music? This is a mistaken notion of yours." Narendra at once sank ten fathom. So I said to Hazra, "You villain! Where will these youngsters be if you talk to them like that?" How can a man live if he gives up devotion? No doubt God has infinite splendour; yet He is under the control of His devotees. A rich man's gate keeper comes to the parlour where his master is seated with his friends. He stands on one side of the room. In his hand he has something covered with a cloth. He is very hesitant, The master asks him, "Well, gatekeeper, what have you in your hand?" Very hesitantly the servant takes out a custard-apple from under the cover, places it in front of his master, and says, "Sir, it is my desire that you eat this," The master is impressed by his servant's devotion. With great love he takes the fruit in his hand and says: "Ah! This is a very nice custard-apple. Where did you pick it? You must have taken a great deal of trouble to get it."
God is under the control of His devotees. King Duryodhana was very attentive to Krishna and said to Him, "Please have your meal here." But the Lord went to Vidura's hut. He was very fond of His devotee. He ate Vidura's simple rice and greens as if they were celestial food. (140)