It was at a Satsang that I heard this beautiful allegory on how our spiritual pursuit is similar to the act of sculpting. Have you had a chance to notice a sculptor at work? Patiently with a chisel and a hammer he chips away at the stone. He removes slowly and in a determined manner the portions of the stone and slowly the beautiful shape of a god, a bird or an animal begins to appear. And when the sculptor has finished chiseling away all the unwanted portion – lo behold! here is your stone sculpture – perfect and complete! If you stop a minute and think of it, the sculpture was not added to the stone. It was discovered by removing the unwanted portions off it.
In the same way as we move forward in our spiritual pursuit – the understanding we gain about the undivided and unchanging truth works like the chisel removing steadily and slowly the unwanted aspects from our life – like desires, ego, wants, bias etc. As we gain the knowledge, our inner self begins to take shape just like the sculpture. And as the culmination of the spiritual pursuit we begin to see our SELF – our very being perfect and complete! Spirituality does not add anything from outside into us. Like a sculptor it works relentlessly to remove our excesses, the unwanted portion from our pristine SELF.