Your regularity helps othersThere was once a very great spiritual Master who lived in America. One day he decided to return to India for a short visit with his family. Before he left, his parting words to the disciples at his ashram were: "In my absence please come regularly and devotedly to the Centre. Here in this place you will feel my presence and the infinite Blessings and Grace of the Supreme. Please cooperate and help in every way. Your president will be conducting the meetings."
When the Master returned, he was very disappointed, for his disciples had not listened to his request. That night, when all the disciples were gathered together, he said: "I have seen from the attendance list that during my absence many of you have not been coming regularly to the Centre. It is not just two or three individuals who have stayed away, but as many as forty or fifty. I don't think all these forty people had serious family calamities which prevented them from coming. I would have already received news of such calamities. Only two or three people were actually sick, but the rest felt that either there was nothing at the Centre or that this was the time for real enjoyment." The disciples remained silent. The Master continued, "Perhaps you have forgotten that two things are needed in the spiritual life: aspiration and regularity. You forgot all about regularity but I hope that at least you have maintained your aspiration. I always say please take regularity as a step, a step forward towards your realisation. Regularity is like a yardstick."
"Master" said one disciple, "many disciples feel that they can meditate just as well at home." "My son, when you are not regular in your attendance, it creates a wrong impression, a bad impression. Other disciples say, 'Oh, so-and-so hasn't come. I also will not come.' Now, if you do not have a strong solid reason not to come to the Centre on the day of a meeting, it is an insult to your soul and to my soul. Your soul comes to the Centre as a spiritual beggar and my soul comes to the Centre to offer you guidance. So if it is 'out of sight, out of mind', this is a terrible insult to both our souls. You feel that since the Guru is not there, there is nothing to go for. But I wish to say everything is there inwardly. And if you feel that personality or individuality conflicts may occur because a particular disciple is conducting the meeting, that is again a mistake. You have come to the Centre to transcend your personality and individuality.
"But, Master, what if we're not in a good mood?"
"There are some disciples who think that when they are not in a good mood, a spiritual, divine mood, it is better for them not to come. They are also making a mistake. If I have got a disease, I will go to a doctor; I will not sit at home. By staying at home my disease will only become worse; it is not going to decrease, so I go to a doctor. Similarly, if I am not in a good mood, if I am suffering, I go the Centre, which is the doctor in this case.
"Again, I wish to say that you may be in a bad mood, your consciousness may be very low, but still you may inspire others. While you are meditating at the Centre, for a fleeting second something may enter into you — something very high, something very deep. For one fleeting second something divine — a wave of love, devotion or surrender — may enter into you, and at that particular moment from the occult or spiritual world, some inner message from you will enter into ten or twelve of your brother and sister disciples. You need not be standing in front of them meditating, but because of some occult, spiritual reason, seven or eight persons will look at you. They may not be able to see your face, but even by looking at your back or your shoulders they will get tremendous inspiration. Sometimes I see you watching others while they are standing up in front of the group meditating. They may not be having as high a meditation as you are, but even then you get inspiration from them. You look at a person and immediately you are so deeply moved that you go deeper within and your consciousness goes higher. So someone may have been in a very bad mood for an hour or for four days, but even if he has one second of high meditation, it can help twenty, thirty or forty individuals at a time. At that moment it is a real achievement for those twenty or thirty disciples. In this way the consciousness of the whole Centre becomes higher.
"I am in no way flattering or tempting you to come to the Centre, but I wish to say there are times when your very presence considerably helps others. You may be the worst meditator, but if you meditate well for even one second, at that moment some spiritual force or divine wave will enter into the ones who are beside or behind you. While you are meditating in your seat you are spreading love waves, divine waves of light. It has happened thousands and thousands of times. So please try to be regular in your attendance. Unless you have family problems or some extremely serious difficulties, please make it a point to always come to the Centre."