Curiosity or necessitySt. David's College; Lampeter, Wales
20 November 1970
I am extremely happy, fortunate and proud to be here this evening in your midst. I shall be in the British isles for about a month. If I had gone back to New York, where I live, without paying my respectful homage to Wales, it would have been the summit of my folly and ignorance.
I understand this is a small university—small in size, but not in height and depth. I understand that there are three hundred and fifty students here. I have been to Yale, Princeton, Cornell, Harvard and most of the other important universities in the United States. There you will find thousands and thousands of students. But what we need is quality and not quantity. What we need is aspiration, the search for Truth, and nothing else. When we have that inner cry for Truth, we do not need anything else.
Yesterday I was at Oxford. Today I am here. On the twenty-third I will be in Cambridge. Then I will be visiting Scotland, Ireland, France and Switzerland. What am I doing? I am doing only one thing. Like a bird I am flying from one place to another. My wings are love and service. One wing is love, the other wing is service. I try to love mankind. I try to serve mankind. This is what I have been doing so far. So I have come here to offer my love to the God inside you and to serve the divinity within you.
Curiosity or necessity. Curiosity is not necessity. Necessity is not curiosity. These two are like the North Pole and the South Pole. It is quite simple. A curious man does not want the truth. He does not need the truth. He just wants to hear from others what the truth looks like. On very rare occasions, he may want to see the truth from a distance. But he is afraid of personally approaching the truth. He feels that the moment he approaches the truth, the volcanic power of the truth will destroy him, his earthly existence. His earthly existence is nothing other than ignorance.
Curiosity commits two unpardonable sins. It kills our spontaneous love for light, the illumining light that transforms our life and enables us to realise the highest Truth. It also extinguishes our inner flame, which is a normal and natural fire. This inner flame we call aspiration. The higher this flame of aspiration rises, the sooner we reach the shores of the Golden Beyond.
Curiosity is afraid of two things: the highest Reality and Divinity. When reality—that is to say, the Transcendental Reality—looks at curiosity, curiosity immediately runs away, looking for an escape, a hiding place. For curiosity feels that in no time it will be exposed. When Divinity looks at curiosity, curiosity, out of tremendous fear, curses Divinity. It feels that a perfect stranger is entering into its very breath.
Curiosity has, however, two intimate friends: doubt and jealousy. Doubt feeds curiosity just at the moment when the divine Peace, Love, Bliss and Power of the spiritual Master want to help mankind unconditionally. Doubt feeds curiosity at that very moment. Jealousy makes curiosity feel that it is far inferior to the genuine seekers of the infinite Light. So jealousy does not permit curiosity to make friends with the spiritual seekers or to take spiritual help from them. Jealousy says, "If the spiritual seeker or Master is so great, then what of it? Let me remain in the meshes of ignorance. No harm." Here jealousy instigates curiosity to remain where it already is.
Now, let us focus our attention on necessity, divine necessity. Necessity is spirituality and spirituality is necessity.
What is spirituality? It is the common language of man and God. Here on earth we have hundreds and thousands of languages to allow one person to understand another; but when it is a matter of God and man, there is only one language, and that language is spirituality. If one follows the path of spirituality, one can easily speak to God face to face.
Necessity, divine necessity, is the pressure to see the highest and to feel the deepest. Today we see the highest, tomorrow we feel the deepest, and the day after we grow into the highest and into the deepest.
God is not only a necessity, but the necessity. How and why is God the necessity? We know that everything has failed us or will fail us in one way or another, but God has never failed the sincere seekers of the infinite Truth. So if we really cry for the inner Truth, the infinite Truth, God will not fail us.
We expect from mankind perfection, perfect Perfection. Now, no person on earth is absolutely perfect. Then how can we expect perfect Perfection from anyone? We expect absolute Divinity from human beings, but absolute Divinity is still a far cry for the individual. But if we want to see perfect Perfection, absolute Divinity, only God can show it to us. He can show us His absolute Divinity. What is more, He can offer us His perfect Perfection, His absolute Divinity.
Today's desire compels us to deny and avoid the Truth, God. Tomorrow's aspiration will compel us to see God the Divinity, God the Inner Pilot. There can be no choice.
Now, what do we mean when we say God is the only reality, or God is the necessity, the only necessity. When we speak of God, what do we actually mean? We mean God-realisation or self-discovery. Let us use the term God-realisation. God-realisation is not only possible but practicable; and, what is more, it is inevitable.
The outer cry we have. With our outer cry we feel that satisfaction is in possessing and being possessed. With our inner cry, we enlarge ourselves, we expand ourselves, we fulfil God here on earth.
The immortal poet, Shakespeare, said,
Teach thy necessity to reason thus;
There is no virtue like necessity.
Necessity is the greatest blessing. We cannot fathom the depth of necessity.
Man's necessity is God.
God's necessity is man.
Man needs God for his highest transcendental realisation, and he will have it in God. God's necessity is man for His absolute Manifestation here on earth. We need God to realise our highest Truth or highest existence. God needs us to manifest Him here on earth, totally, divinely and supremely.
Without realising God, we cannot have abundant Peace, Light, Bliss and Power. God-realisation is of absolute necessity here. Without God, we remain unrealised. Similarly, without man, God remains unmanifested.
Philip Sidney said, "Thy need is greater than mine." When we follow the spiritual life, when we walk along the path of spirituality, one word constantly looms large and important, and that word is 'sacrifice'. We have to sacrifice our very existence for others—what we have and what we are. What we have is willingness and what we are is cheerfulness. This cheerfulness we can have only when we go deep within. When we are cheerfulness within, we are willingness without. If our inner existence is flooded with joy and delight, then only shall we be eager, more than eager, to help the outer world. If there is a barren desert within us, if there is no light within us, how are we going to help or serve mankind? So, if we have joy within, sooner or later, we can bring this joy to the fore and offer it to mankind. We have to love mankind soulfully, serve mankind unconditionally. God-realisation is of the utmost importance. First things first; and our first necessity is God-realisation or self-discovery.
As I said before, curiosity is not necessity, curiosity is not spirituality. But we cannot be sincere overnight. If I am not sincere, I cannot become sincere in the twinkling of an eye. If I have not realised the Truth, I cannot realise the Truth overnight. It is impossible. But if, out of curiosity, I want to see what is happening in the sincere spiritual seekers who feel that God is the only necessity, then I can try to act sincerely myself, because I see something divine and fulfilling in them.
So if, out of curiosity, one goes to a sincere spiritual seeker or a spiritual Master, then he may see something which he has not seen before, in him or around him. I have some students or acquaintances who come to me with very limited aspiration (I beg to be excused, I must say that I also have most sincere students). But I do not throw cold water on those who are right now unfortunate, and do not have genuine aspiration. I tell them, "Do not worry. If you have come to me just out of curiosity, no harm. Mix with the sincere seekers. See what they are getting from their genuine spiritual life; and if you feel that their spiritual life has changed their nature or is giving them a new light and new peace, giving a new meaning to their outer life, then try to follow their example. Be one with them."
I have come across quite a few totally and exclusively curious human beings who have been transformed into serious, sincere seekers. Truth, either today or tomorrow, has to be realised; and if we do not have utmost sincerity right now, no harm. Sincerity grows. Everything grows. Like a muscle, everything can be developed. If we do not have implicit aspiration right now, no harm. We can develop aspiration, our inner cry.
So, dear sisters and brothers, here I am seeing many, many sincere seekers. To them I say: run fast, faster, fastest towards your Destined Goal. And, I beg to be excused, here I am seeing one or two, very few, curious seekers. To them I say: do not stop with the achievement which is your curiosity. Please try to go one step further. Then you will see today's curiosity transformed into tomorrow's sincerity and, in your sincerity, you will see the inner cry, the mounting flame which we call aspiration.
Today's aspiration is tomorrow's realisation. This is the only truth. This is the only realisation that I can offer to you, dearest sisters and brothers, seekers of the infinite Truth. Start here and now.