Sincerity wins the caseThere was once a spiritual Master who, although he had realised God many years ago, did not have even one disciple. He had a few friends and admirers, however.
One day he went to the home of a great lawyer with a few of his admirers. The lawyer was very kind and nice to the spiritual Master, although he did not care for spirituality at all. The lawyer did not want to be ridiculed by others for having no knowledge of spirituality, so just because the spiritual Master's friends were all acquainted with spirituality, and also out of sheer curiosity, he asked the spiritual Master to teach him how to meditate. He said that he would be extremely glad and grateful if the Master could give him some result from meditation as well.
The Master was kind enough to say to the lawyer, "I shall teach you all about spirituality. Come with me, and let us walk for a while." To his friends, the Master said, "Please wait here. We will go out for a walk, but we shall soon come back."
While walking the Master said only a few words to the lawyer. The Master was in a very high, contemplative mood and the lawyer was very unspiritual, very ordinary. He practised law well, but the life of spirituality was not meant for him, at least not at that time. So the Master was able to give him only a little bit of peace, a very little bit of peace, just because he was not prepared to receive more.
After a while they came back to the lawyer's home, where everyone was ready for luncheon. When they entered the house, the lawyer immediately burst into tears and exclaimed, "Oh, for the first time in this life I have seen a spiritual Master! He gave me such peace! I meditated so well that I am full of peace and light inside. All my life I have been practising law, but now I see that it is all deception, deception. Real Light has now entered into my life." The lawyer showed the Master tremendous gratitude because, he said, he had received so much from him.
The lawyer's three daughters were deeply moved by their father's divine tears, and the lawyer's wife was also moved. Outwardly, the friends of the spiritual Master seemed very happy with the lawyer's achievement. But inwardly they felt, "This spiritual Master has been our friend for such a long time, but he has not given us any joy, he has not given us any spiritual light. He has not shown us any of his capacity to offer these things." So inwardly they were angry with the spiritual Master. But they did feel that the lawyer had received something, so they thought that if they became sincere they would also get something from the spiritual Master.
But the Master knew how little he had been able to give to this lawyer. Hearing the lawyer's exaggeration, the Master felt sad because of his insincerity.
The years passed by, and the Master did not come in contact with the lawyer any more. By this time the Master had become well-known. He had hundreds and thousands of disciples. One day it happened that a friend of the Master's invited the Master and a few seekers to come to his home. The friends of the Master were very happy and proud that he had become spiritually well-known, and that he had come as their old friend.
It happened that the same lawyer was there with his wife, but now he was old. As soon as the lawyer's wife saw the spiritual Master, she was thrilled. She said to him, "I received a letter last week from my daughter Judy. She recently saw you at a university. There were about five hundred people there. She was so deeply moved. She listened to your talk and said you had illumined her life. Afterwards she had a vision of you, and she was full of joy and bliss. This is what you have given to her."
When the Master had gone to the lawyer's house several years before, the girls had not cared for the spiritual life at all, and they had no questions to ask the Master. On the contrary, they had enjoyed a kind of silly amusement when they saw the spiritual Master. So the Master was a little surprised. He said, "But she did not come up to me after the talk?"
"She felt that you would not have recognised her, but she recognised you, because you have now become great, very great. Fifteen years ago when you came to our house, you were obscure, therefore she paid no attention to you. Now you have become great, and greatness demands adoration and admiration."
While this was going on, the lawyer and the Master's friends were all having a wonderful evening. They spoke about many spiritual Masters and spiritual subjects. The conversation was most delightful. All of a sudden, the lawyer said to those present, "Look at this spiritual Master!" Then he turned to the Master and said, "You know that many years ago I asked you how to meditate. Believe me, the meditation I had while walking with you still remains in my mind and heart. That was the most significant experience I have ever had. Since then I have meditated hundreds of times, in many places. But I have never since had such a high experience."
The Master inwardly saw that the lawyer's words were once again mere flattery. Now that the Master had become really well-known, the lawyer wanted to exploit his capacity, generosity and compassion by showing the Master's friends and admirers that he had known the Master many years before and that the Master had come to his home.
The Master felt sad and miserable, and he said to the lawyer, "Please follow me." They went to a secluded place, where the Master said, "Please allow me to meditate on you."
The lawyer was tremendously moved that the Master had picked him out of so many people. He was simply overwhelmed with joy and pride. The Master meditated for ten minutes, and during this time a young boy of eighteen or nineteen was watching the Master's meditation with grateful tears rolling down from his eyes. This boy was swimming in the sea of joy and gratitude because he was now able to see this Master face to face. He had seen the spiritual Master five or six times while listening to his lectures and he had wanted to become a disciple of the Master. He had written a letter, but the Master had not answered. When he did not get a reply to his letter, he thought it meant that the Master's path was not meant for him, so he started looking for other spiritual figures and finally he became a disciple of somebody else. But now, in this Master, he saw something of his own, his very own. He could not check his emotion; he burst into tears.
Hearing the boy crying and weeping, the lawyer became furious and said, "You get away from here! You are ruining my meditation. This Master wants to give me something very high, and all you are doing is crying. Leave us alone. Get away from here!"
The Master felt miserable for this boy, because he knew that he was very, very sincere, and he looked at the boy with much love and compassion. The boy fell flat on the ground at the Master's feet and the Master blessed him.
Then the boy left, so the lawyer could again receive peace and light from the Master. This time the Master was able to give much more to the old man — not because the old man had developed more receptivity, not because of his genuine spirituality, but because he had real reverence and admiration for the Master, since now the Master had thousands of disciples.
After the meditation, the lawyer went back to the room where the others were chatting and said, "Today I have really received something. I have had an experience that can never be surpassed by any other experience of mine. Today your friend the Master has given me real peace, boundless light. All my life I have cried for peace and suffered for want of peace, but I have received this peace today. He has given me this peace, and it will remain forever and forever inside my mind and heart, along with my overflowing gratitude to him."
The Master once more felt miserable because the lawyer's speech was again all deception. No doubt this time the lawyer had received much more from the Master, but to say that his whole being was surcharged with peace and light and that his heart was overflowing with gratitude, was a tremendous exaggeration. The Master said to himself, "Now what can I do with this man? If he had been really sincere, I could have done so much, so much for him." The Master was really sad.
Before his wife and all their friends, the old lawyer sat right in front of the Master and said, "Please place your hand on my head. This is my only desire today. If you do this, I will really be blessed, and I will feel that my life has been blessed by somebody who is really great in the spiritual life, somebody who is a true messenger of peace and light on earth."
The Master, quite helpless, placed his hand on the old man's head, although he knew that the lawyer actually wanted his blessings only so that others would appreciate his spiritual depth. While placing his hand on the lawyer's head, the Master put a tremendous force on him so that he would immediately develop tremendous sincerity. The Master did make him absolutely sincere, and blessed him with all his heart's inner love and light.
This time the lawyer said to the gathering, "Fifteen years ago, when I told you I had received infinite light, I was badly exaggerating. I received very little. A few minutes ago when I said that I received, I was again exaggerating, although I did receive much more than the first time. But now I have really received peace, light and bliss in abundant measure. It is my sincerity speaking this time. You can ask the Master if what I am saying is true."
The Master said, "Yes, sincerity has won in the battlefield of your life-struggle."
The old man said, "Something else: my life of ever-increasing gratitude has triumphed over my life of shameless ingratitude."
September 16, 1974