Scene 9

(Ratan and Master are asleep in their prison cell. An angel appears to Ratan, who wakes up and rises to his feet.)

ANGEL: Ratan, the authorities have learned of your innocence, and they will set you free tomorrow.

RATAN: I don’t want to be freed without my Master. He is everything to me. If he is not freed, I am not going to leave this prison. I will stay with him and serve him here. I won’t go without him.

ANGEL: Your Master has ruined your life. He has ruined the lives of many innocent people and caused them terrible suffering. Many people had great faith in him, and now see what he has done to them. His spiritual children dare not show their faces, for his crime has been like a slur on their lives, and they are now ridiculed and mocked. Can’t you recognise your stupidity?

RATAN: You call it stupidity, but I call it my oneness with my Master. This life of mine will last only for a short while. I have given it to my Master unconditionally, and I won’t take it back now. I have surrendered everything to my Master. My body, vital, mind, heart and soul are all for his use only, until I die. I never want to be separated from my Master. If he is in hell, that will be my Heaven. I shall stay with him. And if he goes to Heaven, there I too shall go. I don’t need earthly freedom, I don’t need anybody on earth except him.

(Ratan sings.)

Guruh brahma guruh vishnu
guruh devo maheshwarah
gurureva param brahma
tasmai shri gurabe namah

(Guru is Brahma, Guru is Vishnu,
Guru is the great God Shiva.
Indeed, Guru is the Brahman.
To that Divine Master I offer my obeisance.)

ANGEL: Suppose I were to give you illumination this very moment. Would you not leave your Master then, seeing that he is far inferior to you?

RATAN: No, even if you were to give me illumination I would not leave my Master. He taught me about God, he gave me the message of God, he inspired my love for God. If you gave me illumination, I would give it to my Master.

ANGEL: So you admit that your Master does not have illumination?

RATAN: I do not know whether my Master has it or not. But I feel that he has.

ANGEL: If he had illumination, how could he do such inhuman, absurd, unthinkable things? Would an illumined soul poison his own disciples in order to get their money? Those two disciples whom he poisoned have such nobility that they came to their son and told him lies in order to protect their Master’s reputation and to prevent their son from losing all faith in the spiritual life. I tell you, you yourself are far superior to your Master in spirituality. Your Master is a real fake. You are deceiving yourself and placing your faith in a fraud.

RATAN: I cannot judge my Master. He knows what is best for me and for all his disciples. I am sure that whatever he has done has been for the best.

ANGEL: I shall give you some sound advice. One who has a truly illumined Master will realise God infinitely sooner than one with a false Master. Therefore, one should use discrimination and look for a genuine Master. But because of your tremendous sincerity and devotion, I am going to give you illumination anyway.

RATAN: I shall look upon the illumination you give me as a fruit. If you give me a fruit, I shall share it with my Master. If you free me, I shall take my Master with me, and if he is not allowed to leave, then I also shall stay. So whatever you give to me, you are giving equally to him.

ANGEL: The moment I touch your head, you will be illumined. Then wake your Master if you wish and touch him. You will give him illumination.

(Angel places his hands on Ratan’s head. Master wakes up and watches his disciple receiving illumination. When the angel removes his hands from Ratan’s head, Ratan immediately prostrates himself and touches his Master’s feet. Master is illumined. Master and Ratan embrace each other, and the gate of the prison cell disappears. Exeunt Master and Ratan.)