The Master's dearest disciple

"Master, Master, you need material wealth for God-manifestation and I need spiritual wealth for God-realisation. I shall give you all my material wealth and place all the members of my family at your feet. I have four sons, three daughters and a devoted wife. We shall all be at your feet. But Master, please do me a favour. Make me your best disciple, your dearest disciple. I know it will take me a very long time to realise God. I am not ready for that. You and God know when I will be ready or whether I shall ever be ready. Right now God-realisation is sheer imagination for me. I want something else from you, which is nowhere near God-realisation. I just want to be your dearest disciple.

"Your dearest and best disciple right now is Rakhal. You have no idea how jealous I am of him and how I hate him. I do not drink even a glass of water without thinking of him — without feeling jealous of him and cursing him and all his forefathers. Master, you advise us that we have to conquer jealousy. I have now discovered a supreme secret: If, out of your infinite bounty, you make me dearer to you than Rakhal, then all my jealousies will vanish. You want my nature's perfection. I assure you, Master, that once I am closer to you than Rakhal, I shall be absolutely perfect and please you in every way, far more than he is doing now. Just give me a chance."

"Rohin, you think that by becoming closer to me than Rakhal you will be able to conquer your jealousy. You think that once you are at the top of the tree, you will not be jealous of others who are at the foot of the tree. But I tell you, this is not true. Jealousy has an inseparable friend named insecurity. If I make you my dearest disciple, you will all the time be thinking of the ones who are at the foot of the tree. You will be constantly plagued by the fear that at any moment they will climb up the tree and stand beside you. Then naturally your glory will disappear, and you will again be plagued by jealousy. Anyway, I wish to tell you that unless you deserve to be closest and dearest to me, I will not be able to make you closest, because you will fail me in the life-examination."

"Master, if you make me your dearest disciple, I assure you that I will not fail you. You must promise to make me your dearest disciple, and I will be ready to sit at any examination."

"Then tomorrow I shall make you my dearest disciple under the condition that you pass my examination."

"Master, I am ready."

"All right. Tomorrow, if you can touch the feet of Rakhal in front of all my disciples, I shall immediately make you my absolutely dearest disciple."

"Master, how can I do that? He is just an ordinary human being like me. He is also full of imperfections. Even though you love him most, nobody even thinks that he is perfect. So why do you want me to touch the feet of an imperfect and ignorant person? I can touch your feet twenty-four hours a day, kiss the dust of your feet, but not his. If you change your request and ask me to bless Rakhal, that I can easily do — but never will I be able to touch his feet."

The Master said, "Tomorrow you come here with your servant. This is my express wish."

The following day Rohin went to the Master with his servant. There were many disciples gathered together, and the Master said to his dearest disciple, "Go and touch the feet of Rohin's servant."

Rakhal immediately followed the Master's command.

Then the Master said, "Pray to Rohin's servant as you pray to me, with a devoted heart." Most soulfully Rakhal prayed to Rohin's servant.

Rohin was completely bewildered, and the admirers of Rakhal felt miserable, but they could not say anything because he was following the Master's express order. "The Master knows what is best for Rakhal and for everybody," they said to themselves.

The Master then asked Rakhal how it was possible for him to touch the feet of Rohin's servant and to pray to him.

Rakhal replied, "When I look at a person, I enter into that person and see you in him, you alone; therefore, it is so easy for me to pray to him, for I know it is you who will receive my prayer. My only desire is that one day you will grant me a boon."

"What boon is that?"

"Master, that when I look at any person on earth, I shall see only you, and not only on the inside but on the outside as well. For me I wish there to be only you and nobody else on earth — you in infinite forms. I would like to see all human beings as the manifestation of your infinite forms."

The Master gave Rakhal a soulful smile and said, "Your prayer is granted, my child." Then he turned to Rohin and said, "Rohin, you have so far been playing the role of a seeker. Today I wish you to play the role of a judge. I have fulfilled Rakhal's desire. I could not fulfil your desire, but I want to please you at least in one way. So play the role of an impartial judge and not a seeker, and then see if what I have done is right."

15 July, 1974