The missing disciples1There was once a spiritual Master who lived near the Himalayas. Twice a week he would meditate with his disciples at his own house and share with them his highest meditation. One evening, as he was sitting with his disciples, one of the disciples came in late. The Master looked at him and said, “Rakhal, why are you so angry? Is this why you are late?”
Rakhal looked totally amazed that the Master could read his thoughts. He took his seat, speechless with astonishment, and fixed his eyes on the Master.
The Master turned to the other disciples and said, “I can see your subtle bodies. If a person is planning something destructive, I see this destructive force in its subtle form before it manifests itself on the physical plane. Or if someone is very angry or displeased with me, I see it before he can say or do anything.”
“But Master,” said one disciple, “why should any of us ever be angry or displeased with you?”
“All the disciples throw their negative forces into me,” replied the Master. “I am the culprit for everything. Now, why is Rakhal angry with me? I have not even seen him today. But he is cursing me because he has quarrelled with another disciple. He is not projecting his anger into the person he fought with. He is projecting it into me instead. The disciple who has just quarrelled with another disciple says to me inwardly, ‘Why have you accepted such a rascal as your disciple? He is so undivine.’ I am sitting at home in my chair and I haven’t even seen that person during the day, but his subtle body comes to me and I see anger in the subtle body. Then, a few hours later, I see the disciple and I see the same anger on his face.”
“Master,” asked the same disciple, “how can it happen that part of us becomes angry or part of us does something, not only without our outer knowledge but also without our consent, as it were? How can we be so divided?”
“My son, it is quite possible. You know, sometimes it happens that the subtle life has accepted the spiritual life, but the physical mind is all the time doubting. Acceptance and faith are there in the subtle, but for the physical it takes time. It may accept my path two days or two months or two years later. All this time, the person comes to me regularly and devotedly just because his heart and soul have accepted me, even though his mind has not.
“Inner faith you people already have. Otherwise, you would not be following the spiritual life. But it is outer faith that many of you still need. Outer faith is not just a mechanical thing. You all have inner faith, but the faith that is needed in all your outer activities is lacking. Unless and until we have faith in every plane of our being, we cannot realise the Truth.
“Sometimes disciples tell me things inwardly, but they don’t tell me outwardly. Communication takes place on the inner plane, where they are receptive to my Light. Some receive my Light inwardly, because their inner being receives, but most of the time they resist. There are other disciples who have developed a very good receptive capacity. Even if I don’t speak to them they receive Light from me. But there are many to whom I speak on the phone or in person for hours, but even then they don’t receive my Light. Even if I tell them outwardly that I want to give them some Light or help, they don’t accept it. They have the same problems again and again.”
“Master,” began one of the disciples, “it seems to me that if we don’t want to give you problems all the time, we have to strive to be happy. Isn’t that right? I am happiest when I see you as often as possible, so I come to all the meetings and other functions we have. But, Master, very often I see that my brother and sister disciples don’t come, and I don’t think they have a very good reason for staying away.”
“It is true, my son, that many do not come to all the meetings and functions even though they can. I want everyone to be happy, as you say. If staying at home and sleeping makes them happy, that is up to them. If coming makes them happy, so much the better. But I wish to say that some do not come to different functions just because they are not participating. Just because it is others who are taking part and not themselves, they stay at home. What are they doing at that time? I don’t think they are meditating and raising their consciousness at home. If they stay away to do some other work that I ask them to do, that is another matter. But there are many, many who do not attend quite a few functions because of their jealousy. They know that others are performing on these days and that those people will get appreciation from me. I am sure that some are sick, but not so many people fall sick at the same time.
“I must add, too, that it is mostly women who do this kind of thing. Men have wonderful limitations, countless defects, but when it comes to going and watching a function, they will at least go. They will go, and then criticise it and curse themselves for wasting their time. But the women won’t go right from the beginning, not because they were working late the night before, nor because they lack interest, but because they lack inner oneness. Many people say they do not go to plays because they have seen the play before. But if I saw someone portray a certain character two years ago, is that any reason why I should not see him again now? This is just lethargy or jealousy.
“Some people are under the impression that if they don’t go, no one will notice, because so many others are there. But many have the same idea and, as a result, thirty or forty don’t come. Then all the culprits are caught.
“My children, I don’t want to spend my time endlessly scolding you, but I want you to know what will really make you happy and make me happy. If sleeping or resting really made you happy, then I would ask you to do it. But it is only oneness, soulful participation, that can really create happiness and joy in your life of aspiration. Please don’t fight with each other; don’t be jealous of one another any more. You are all in the same family and it is your inner harmony and oneness that will help to unite you the fastest with the Supreme.”
AD 8. 30 July 1974.↩