Recently, during one of my international lectures online, we were discussing Saint Mother Teresa’s remarkable life and her struggles with her connection and faith in God. I have always admired her; she was a great soul who gave her life to God and humanity. She also showed us that no matter how hard and sincerely we work, sometimes our purpose does not become fully clear until we leave this earth.
Many years ago, I had the great fortune of having a private meeting with her. She was so kind and humble; she was full of cosmic energy. The light that emanated from her was amazing. That day she gave me a prayer and signed it personally. I carry this prayer everywhere I go. Meeting her gave me so much inspiration to carry on my work with the poor and desolate.
She devoted her life to helping the poorest of the poor, the dying, and the outcasts. Everyone she treated with love, respect, and dignity, as though she was helping Jesus Himself. And the remarkable thing in this is that for more than 50 years she felt abandoned by Him. When she started her Order of the Missionaries of Charity, she felt very much called by Jesus to do the work and surrendered completely to His will. Very soon though she began to experience His absence within herself. So deep was her yearning and her despair that she could no longer feel Him in her heart. She wrote to one of her Spiritual Confidants: “The silence and the emptiness is so great that I look and do not see. Listen and do not hear.” Imagine the greatness of her soul that even though she could not feel Jesus within her she never stopped seeing Him in all those suffering souls she helped. She had a faith filled perseverance and believed she was fulfilling her purpose.
You may ask how can this happen, that such a great soul can do so many great deeds, pray to God and preach His message and yet feel He will not connect with her? When I studied her astrology, I understood why. The planets in her horoscope were not favouring that Divine connection. Her life started in the Venus period, followed by the periods of Sun, Moon, Mars, Rahu, Jupiter, Saturn, Mercury, and Ketu. Her life’s journey from the periods of Venus right through to Mercury destined her to be a karmayogini (a female dedicated to work), which is why she believed the hard work she was doing was her purpose.
In her Jupiter period there was an eleven-month Ketu sub-period, that began on 17th May 1957, in her Twelfth House. This is the House of Salvation, and astrologically is a time when many great sages and saints achieved their realisation. The influence of Ketu heightened Saint Mother Teresa’s desire for connection with Jesus, but it didn’t happen because she was in her Jupiter main period. Jupiter and Ketu are not friendly with each other. It would happen, because her main Ketu period followed Mercury, but the amazing thing is she was not in physical form when that period came. She had left the physical body, but her soul never dies and continues the work it did while living on this earth. She is now in astral form and has found her purpose — still helping souls but she now is connected to her Beloved. It was accepted by the Vatican that two miracle cures were attributable to her and therefore she was raised to sainthood in September 2016.
I remember a number of years ago, it came as a shock to so many to learn that Saint Mother Teresa, one of our most famous religious figures over the last century, lived much of her life tormented by doubt. She struggled with her connection to God and with her faith. In letters and private reflections published, she longed for God. She writes, “In my heart, there is no faith. I want God with all the powers of my soul, and yet between us there is terrible separation.” Her secret letters show that she spent almost 50 years without sensing the presence of God in her life, but she always had “hope” of achieving that divine connection.
To me, this is the key! We can’t live without hope. But hope doesn’t really start with us; it starts with God. He is the one who promises to always love us, never leave us, be strong when we are weak, provide direction when we are lost and wisdom whenever we ask for it. Our hope must be in Him, he is the author of hope. So, like Saint Mother Teresa, sometimes we may suffer. We may feel alone, abandoned, hungry for His voice. We may experience “faithless days” when we doubt everything. But like her, we must continue to hope and trust in God.
Finally, I’d like to share another prayer Saint Mother Teresa gave me that day during our private meeting:
The fruit of silence is prayer
The fruit of prayer is faith
The fruit of faith is love
The fruit of love is service
The fruit of service is peace