Similarly, in spiritual life too, the world appears different. How life appears to us depends on where we are placed. The view is dependent on where we stand. Management will always look at things from a particular perspective, labor from another. Man from one, woman from another. The way we look at things we give them their meaning. At different levels of spiritual development the world will inevitably appear different. Broadly speaking these would be influenced by the major experiences on the path.
The Age of innocence is a stage when we believe that everything will be perfect. When you are a child, you take it for granted that everybody exists only to fulfill your needs, whims and fancies. A child takes it as a right that when he cries at night somebody will come and attend to the problem. Many adults have not outgrown this stage. They expect to be taken care of and loved. They are always expecting somebody to do something. The government should do this, the teachers should do that, and the neighbors should behave this way. Everybody should do everything so that they will live happy lives. When such persons come to spirituality, they have the same relationship with God. They look upon Him as some kind of Santa Claus whose primary function is to grant wishes only. At that time, we do not own any duty ourselves.
The Age of Disillusionment is when we find out that life is not perfect and things are inherently flawed. The child grows up and faces the center of the universe and for the most part the universe doesn’t know he exists or is indifferent to his existence. This is the pain of adolescence. People in this stage say there is no God or there is no use believing in Him. They may become cynical or atheistic. They say that whatever they do is correct. His elders have already lost a lot of time or many opportunities – he would do right job.
The Age of Responsibility is a stage when we start taking responsibility for our life. No more others will look after us. We will operate within the realm of cause and effect. We will get just rewards of our actions. Nobody is looking out for me and I must look out for myself says a person in the age of responsibility for his life. Many materialistic achievers fall in this category. The age of keeper-hood is when a person starts really growing spiritually. It dawns on him that he is ‘his brother’s keeper’ Far from the world being there to take care of him, he is there to take care of the world. Instead of wanting others to share his pain, he wishes to relieve the pain of others. These are the noble people like the Mahatma Gandhi, Abraham Lincolns, who fought to serve the world they came to and made it a better place for others to live.
The Age of Enlightenment extends far beyond that of ‘keeper-hood’. When love becomes universal, when there is complete identification, people are not far away from me. They are me. I and they are one. My self is the self in all. Even to love somebody there must be two. Enlightenment sees only the one, the non-dual. It is the culmination of spiritual growth, the state of Lord
To Accomplish Your Dream, you must realize the point of your age and act accordingly.