Generally, we do some service to the Lord and expect something good in return from the Lord. This is the norm of the general worldly business. The specialty of Lord Datta is that He announces His policy in the beginning itself. His policy is only one-sided. You have to do service to Him but He will not do anything good for you in return. Thus the attitude of business completely disappears from the mind of the devotee.
At this stage itself, majority of the devotees drop out. Some devotees come to Him prepared for doing the service without expecting any good fruit in return. After some time, He opens His second policy. This policy is a two-way traffic, but it is different from our two-way traffic. He starts doing bad in return for our service. As the devotees press His feet, He will beat them with His stick. In fact, this is the true love.
The devotee must have divine knowledge to understand Lord Datta. By giving such troubles, He is clearing all their sins. In clearing the sins, He pays ninety-nine percent and the doer must pay one percent according to the rule of minimum justice. He appears to be giving troubles, but actually He is clearing the devotees' sins. Then why does He not reveal this truth? The true love of the devotee is tested only when the truth is not revealed. In the case of true love, one shows loves in spite of troubles from the other side. If the truth is revealed this true love disappears. We will realize that these troubles are for our own benefit. Then we will tolerate the troubles from that angle. In such a case it cannot be called true love. Therefore Lord Datta maintains the secrecy.
After clearing the sins, He will give boons. Without curing the fever, strong food should not be given. If it is given, the patient dies. Demons were destroyed by such boons. There are three types of devotees. The lower-level devotee asks for a boon like a demon. He does not give any freedom to the Lord. He decides that something is good for him and asks the Lord to give it. The devotee in this level acts like a master and is indirectly treating the Lord as his servant. The master asks the servant to do a particular thing without any choice.
The mid-level devotees ask the Lord to do whatever is good for them. They give some freedom to the Lord in deciding, what is good and what is bad for them. Up to this point, they give freedom to the Lord. But after this point, the Lord has no freedom and He has to do only good. Thus these devotees give 50 percent freedom to the Lord.
The best devotee gives 100 percent freedom to the Lord. He asks the Lord to do whatever the Lord likes. This devotee is prepared to receive bad results also if it can please the Lord. His only aim is doing whatever God likes; his goal is the pleasure of God. This devotee feels that he is only an inert means for the play of the Lord by which the Lord is entertained. A player hits the ball by foot and is entertained. The devotee also likes to receive continuous sufferings, if such sufferings can entertain the Lord.
When Jesus was saying His last prayer, He tried to avoid the future agony of death. For a moment, He was shaken by the forthcoming agony of crucifixion. But immediately, He regained His original state and ended the prayer by saying "Let Thy will be done". He said finally that He is prepared to suffer if that was the will of the Lord. This is the best devotion.
Lord Datta starts giving small troubles, which means that He is clearing the small sins of the devotee. If the devotee is firm in his faith, Datta starts clearing big sins. That means the small troubles will be slowly magnified into big troubles. When He clears your debt of Rs. 100/-, He pays ninety-nine rupees and you will have to pay a rupee. Then He starts clearing your debt of one thousand rupees and then you have to pay Rs.10/-. You have to pay one percent of your sin according to the least expectation of justice.
In the first stage, Lord Datta keeps silent without doing any good for your service. This is the test of Brahma. This is a sort of initial training for the further tests. Then Datta starts troubling you for your service. The clearance of small sins is the test of Vishnu. In the third stage, big sins are cleared and your troubles are intensified. This is the third test of Rudra.
From one angle, these are the tests to find out the strength of your faith and the truth in your love. Form another angle, these tests are the secret clearance of your sins and your purification to make you eligible for His grace. Only the best devotee can stand before the special Lord Datta.
Datta is the true God and His preachings are true. The benefit you get is also true. The real sun can remove the real darkness by its real light and imaginary sun cannot remove the real darkness. You are spending a lot of your time and energy in analyzing these worldly affairs. You are egoistic and you think that you are intelligent enough to solve your worldly affairs. By your intelligence and intensified analysis through long discussions, you will find that the worldly affair about which you have taken so much care utterly flops at the end. If you spend even one-tenth of that time and energy in the service and devotion of Lord Datta, your worldly issue succeeds beyond your imagination.
In fact, the servants of Lord Datta attend to your worldly affairs. These worldly matters are below His level. His level of work starts when you go to hell after death. He will ask the Lord of hell to not enquire about you and close your file, since you are in His service. Thus you are blessed in this world and also in the upper world. But your faith is not a hundred percent to practice this. If you are in His constant devotion, all your duties will be also discharged by the power of Lord Datta in a fraction of second, and in an excellent manner. One can test this concept in the case of one worldly affair and see whether what I say is correct or not.
The above is a message by Shri Datta Swami and can be found at universal-spirituality.org