It was the middle of the night and Turtle was tossing branches onto the bonfire outside his burrow. The flames were growing higher and brighter. All the while, Turtle was yelling, “Burning, burning. What the Great Turtle desires is burning.”
Excitedly grasshopper asked Turtle, “What are you doing/”
Turtle replied, “How else may Truth be revealed but through burning. Truth cannot be seen in the darkness and only the soul that is ablaze with its own Light can realize it.”
Young turtle asked grasshopper, “What does Turtle mean by all this?”
Grasshopper said, “I don’t have any idea?”
- In this action teaching, Turtle tries to show young turtle and grasshopper the intensity of love required to reach journeys end. In order to reach the Beloved, the traveler’s heart and soul must be aflame with love. Each branch tossed on the fire, represents an action taken for God/Absolute; and as the fire grows stronger, consuming the different branches, the inner darkness is aglow with the burning Love and Light of Union.
- Additionally, while action toward the Beloved is essential, an overlaying aspect of the spiritual journey is the Beloved’s action toward the traveler. Two of the great Servants of God have said: ‘love is not earned it is bestowed,’ and “God remembered me, long before I remember Him; and came looking for me, long before I went looking for Him.” Often it is this action by God/Absolute that tips the balance in favor of the lover.
- The traveler, who reaches journey end, must be like the moth who desires only to be consumed by the candle’s flame. -SB