Love realised, surrender fulfilled, oneness manifested
Love realised, surrender fulfilled, oneness manifestedThis incident took place fifty years ago. There was a great spiritual Master who had a small cottage at the foot of the Himalayas, where he lived. Although it was in a remote place, he had many, many disciples.
One day his disciples gathered together and he gave a talk on love — divine love. His lecture was excellent, simply excellent and most soulful. At the end of the talk he said, "My children, nobody amongst you has any love for me. What you have is, rather, reverential awe. In the spiritual life what is necessary is real divine love, and not reverential awe. You may feel that you love me, but it is not true. It is absolutely wrong and false. True love is the love of oneness. You don't have that kind of love for me. What you have is reverential awe."
At this his disciples were terribly shocked. The meeting was over, and with sad faces all the disciples left the Master's presence. Only seven disciples remained — three young men and four young women. They sat around the Master with folded hands and one of the young men said to the Master, "Master, how is it that you say that I don't love you? I do love you."
The Master said, "You love me? What is the proof?"
"The proof is here. I will do anything for you. Whatever you want me to do, I will do gladly and immediately."
The Master said, "Wonderful. Then tomorrow, early in the morning, at one o'clock, you have to get up and meditate for two hours."
"Master! At one o'clock in the morning?"
"Master, how can I get up at that hour. You know I only sleep for five or six hours a night. To get up at one o'clock in the morning and meditate for two hours? Oh Master, it is really a difficult task!"
"My son, indeed you love me." With a smile the Master said, "Here is your love for me. You can't get up at one o'clock to meditate. My son, indeed this is your love for me."
Then another young man said to the Master, "Master, you can feel my heart. I really and truly love you. I love you. You are my only concern."
The Master said, "You really love me?"
"Yes, I love you."
"Then what can you do for me?"
"I can do anything you ask of me, immediately."
The Master said, "All right. Starting now, for three days you will not take a morsel of food, not even a glass of water. Nothing. For three days you have to remain without food or drink."
"Master, how can I do that? You know I am a greedy fellow. Daily I eat five or six times. This is such a difficult, difficult task for me. I can do anything else, Master. For me not to eat even once a day is impossible. Master, please give me something else to do."
The Master said, "Indeed. This is your love for me. You can't do even this much for me. You can't listen to me, and this is your love."
Then the Master asked the third young man, "What do you want? Why are you here?"
"Master, my love for you is immense, spontaneous, most soulful. I will do anything you want. I will move heaven and earth to please you. I love you much more than I love my girl friend. Master, tell me what you want."
The Master said, "You love me so dearly? Look here, bring me a piece of paper."
The young man brought the paper and the Master began to write. The name of the young man was Bharat. The Master wrote down: 'MY NAME IS BHARAT. I WISH TO TELL YOU, MY BROTHERS AND SISTERS, THAT I HAVE MORE COMPASSION FOR HUMANITY THAN GOD HIMSELF HAS. GOD HAS SENT ME INTO THE WORLD. I AM HELPLESS BUT I AM FIGHTING AGAINST IGNORANCE. GOD HIMSELF DID NOT DARE COME ONTO EARTH, BUT HE HAS SENT ME AND I FEEL THAT I AM GREATER AND MORE COMPASSIONATE THAN GOD HIMSELF!' Then the Master said, "This is what I have written for you. You have to read it out tomorrow when we have our meeting. There will be hundreds of people here and you have to read out this message."
"Master, how can I read this? People will laugh at me. They will say, 'He is greater than God?' They will think that am a fool, I am insane. Master, I don't want to be embarrassed."
The Master said, "Oh, this is your love for me. Indeed, this is your love for me."
Then the Master turned to the young women. The first young woman said, "Master, never did I imagine that you could be so cruel. You know how deeply I love you. All day and night I think of you with such joy, such sweetness, such affection, and you say that I don't love you."
The Master said, "You love me?"
"Then do something for me. Tomorrow, when the meeting starts, right in front of everyone you have to say that your Master is a fraud. He is a fake. He has not realised God. He has deceived you many, many times. He has done many wrong, immoral, absurd things, and he is not realised. He is deceiving us, failing us. We must never listen to him. You must say, 'We must all leave him, all at once.' You have to say that tomorrow at the meeting."
"Oh Master, how can I say this? I know you are a sincere man. You are so sincere and you are so compassionate. You are so divine and if I say this, then people will strike me there in the meeting itself. I can't do this, Master. How can I, knowing you are so good, so kind, and so affectionate — so divine? Master, why do you want me to do this kind of unthinkable thing? It is unbelievable, incredible, Master. I can't."
The Master said, "Indeed, you love me. My daughter, indeed you love me. You can do everything for me, but not this. This is your love."
Then he turned to another young woman, the second young woman in the row, and said, "Tell me, what do you want?"
"Master, God has given me a heart and that heart is for you. You know that I don't care for anybody in the family. I have my husband; I have my children; I have my relatives, but all the the time I think only of you. You only are the object of my adoration, love, concern, joy and pride."
The Master said, "Wonderful. Then what do you want? What can you do for me?"
"I can do anything for you immediately."
"Early in the morning you usually kiss your children and say hello to your husband. Tomorrow you must not kiss your children, you must not say hello to your husband, and you must not say a word to the members of your family the whole day."
"Master, how can I do that. When the children come back from school they will cry for food. They will cry, 'Ma! Ma! Ma!' How am I going to remain silent? I have to respond to them. What will they think of me? And when my husband comes back home from his office, dead tired, he will ask me for hot milk and he will talk to me. He will ask me quite a few things. If I don't answer, he will say, 'What is wrong with you?' He will even go to the length of striking me in front of the children. Master, please tell me to do something else. This is impossible! One whole day not to speak to my children, not to say hello to my husband, how can I do that? What will they think of me; what will my husband think of me? He will think that I have gone crazy. He will take me to a mental hospital. Master, please, something else."
"Yes my daughter, you really love me. Indeed you love me."
Then the Master went to the third young woman. The Master said, "My daughter, what do you want?"
"Master, you know that only for you I left my husband, my children, the members of my family, to accept the spiritual life wholeheartedly. Just to please you I have taken to the spiritual life, and I don't care for my children, I don't care for my husband. I have given up everything, only to follow the spiritual life, and under your guidance I am making tremendous progress. Now Master, how can you say, when I have abandoned everything for you, that I don't love you?"
"You love me?"
"Yes. You can feel it and you can see my sacrifice — the sacrifice that I have already made only to please you."
The Master said, "Well then, I wish you to go to the top of the temple, and from there jump off."
"Master, you want me to commit suicide?"
"I do not know what I am asking you to do, but I want you to jump from the very top."
"Master, I am ready to go, but I know that you will protect me. I will not die."
The Master said, "You are going there with the idea that I shall protect you?"
"Yes, Master. I am ready to go and jump."
"My daughter, no, no, no. Your love for me is conditional. You feel that if you jump I shall protect you. That is why you can jump — because you will escape death. My daughter, this is your love for me. Indeed, this is your love for me."
Then he turned to the last, the seventh one. The Master said, "Now what do you want?"
"Master, I love you, I love you, I love you."
"Yes. I can do anything, anything you want, immediately."
The Master said, "You leave this place immediately and I don't want to see your face again in this life. Never shall you come to me. Never will I see your face."
"Master, if that is your choice, if that is your wish — that you will never see me again in this life, and you will not allow me to come to your place — if that makes you happy, then I am ready. Master, I am leaving. I came into the world to please you. I came into the world to love you. I came into the world to adore you. I came into the world to worship you. I came into the world to fulfil you. By throwing me aside, if you feel that you will be happy, you will be able to fulfil yourself, then Master, I am ready. To give you joy is the sole purpose of my life. Master, I am eternally, outwardly, inwardly yours. I am leaving."
Immediately the Master placed the palms of his hands on her head. He blessed this particular disciple with all his heart and soul, saying, "At long last I have seen someone who really and truly loves me. My daughter, you are the only one who loves me — you and nobody else on earth. I do not need anybody else's love. My daughter, your love is true, your love is genuine. You have me. Your spiritual Master is eternally yours. He is for you and he will remain for you for all time, through eternity.
"Your Master will remain physically, vitally, mentally, and psychically closest, closest to your heart. You are his dearest disciple. You are his peerless pride. You are his very own."
Inseparable oneness knows no curiosityThere was a very, very great spiritual Master. He had hundreds of disciples, but out of these hundreds, naturally everyone could not be his selected or his chosen disciple. So he made a selection, an inner selection. In that selection he chose only fifty disciples whom he considered to be his very close disciples. These fifty disciples used to come to him very often, and he would give them special attention, affection and concern.
Now one day he invited an elderly couple to his house. This couple had been with the Master for about twenty years. The husband was sixty years old and the wife was fifty-eight. Both of them were very close to the Master. For twenty years they had served him, and hundreds and hundreds of times the Master had lavished affection on them. They had served the Master in many, many ways.
Now on that day, when this particular couple came to the Master, the Master said to the wife, "I have something private to tell you, so you come along." He said to the husband, "You please stay here. Let me say something to her in private."
So the husband, poor husband, sat there. The Master and the wife moved a short distance away, and the Master spoke to the wife in secret and said, "Don't tell this to anybody."
He spoke to the disciple only for a couple of minutes and then he said, "Let us stand here and meditate."
The Master and the disciple meditated but the husband did not see what was going on because they were not within his range of vision. When the Master and the disciple came back to the husband, the Master blessed the husband and said, "Now you can go home."
On the way home, the husband was impatient with the desire to know what the Master had said to his wife, but the wife said, "No, it is a top secret. It is impossible; I cannot tell you. Master has told me not to tell it to anybody, so I can't tell you or anybody else."
The husband's ego came forward and he said, "What? Master has always told us that we are one, one, one. Always he takes all his disciples, husbands and wives, as one unit. Now how can it be? If we are really one, how can the Master separate us? What kind of secret is this that I can't hear?"
So he felt miserable, simply miserable, but what could he do? The wife obeyed the Master. She did not tell the secret.
Two days later, the husband and wife again came to the Master, and the Master said to the husband, "Today you come with me. Let her sit alone. I have something most private to tell you. It is a top secret."
So the Master took the husband into a corner. The wife couldn't see a thing from where she sat. The Master said something very soulful for a couple of minutes to the husband and then said, "Let us meditate for a few minutes." They meditated, and then the Master and the husband went back to the wife.
The Master said, "You may go home."
Now on their way home, the husband was very excited and wanted to tell his wife that the Master had told him something very significant and absolutely confidential.
"Oh, you thought that the Master tells secrets only to you and not to me. Look, today I have a secret."
The wife said, "All right, but for God's sake I don't want to hear it. Your secret is for you. It is not for me. I want Master's wish to be fulfilled. He took you away from me to tell you some secret and I have no right to pry into it. So you please keep the secret for yourself."
The husband was so upset. "What? You don't want to hear my secret? That means that you feel your secret is more important than the secret that I have received from the Master."
He was again very sad. 'Oh God! I was so eager to learn her secret and she didn't tell me. Now I am offering my secret which Master has asked me not to tell. I want to tell her that I also have some real secret, but she doesn't even want to hear it. In every way she is snubbing me.'
Then at night he had a dream. In the dream he saw somebody telling him that his wife was superior to him in spirituality, and he thought that perhaps it was true. So he went to the Master the following day and he said, "How is it that you have made my wife more spiritual than I? Both of us came together, and look: when you told her something I felt miserable that I was excluded. To some extent my ego came forward and I became jealous. In every way I feel that she has surpassed me in spirituality. Oh God, what am I going to do now?"
Then he said to the Master, "Master, now help me and save me. I really don't understand how she can be more spiritual than I am. Both of us came together, but now, from her love and devotion towards you, I feel that she is listening to you more than I am and she is making me feel that I am inferior. So tell me how she has become more devoted and more sincere. How has she come to be so close to you?"
The Master said, "You have already given the answer. She has become close to me because she has become really devoted to me. She is sincere to me and she tries to listen to me in everything."
Then the disciple said, "You told us, Master, that we are one. Marriage means union, and now if we are really one, how is it that she doesn't want to listen to me and she listens to you?"
The Master said, "Look here. Marriage really means union, oneness. Again, union means love. Love is union. Now with marriage, the union that is established between two souls lasts only for one year or two years, twenty years or sixty years; then that union is gone. But the union that is established with spiritual love never dies. So with the Master the union that you disciples establish is the union of true love. Here there is no question of an outer union. There is only the inner union which is based on divine love. So that is why the love between the Master and the disciple lasts forever. This love is real union, and union is love for eternity. That is why the seeker, the aspirant, knows that the eternal relationship is one that he or she can have only with the Master.
"But the transitory relationship, the temporary relationship, he or she can have with a human being. The husband will have the wife for fleeting years; the wife will have a connection with the husband for fleeting years, but with the Master the wife will have an eternal connection, an eternal relationship. The husband will have the same eternal relationship with the Master. That is why the sincere, dedicated disciples feel that the Master is dearest, because the Master brings the message of eternal love, eternal progress and eternal union; and this union is always nourishing and fulfilling."
This plant is man, this plant is GodThere was once a seeker. For many years he had been looking for a Master, a Guru. Unfortunately he had not found one. He had been to many spiritual groups, but the teachers that he met were not to his taste. So he was still looking, looking for a spiritual Master. One day while he was walking along the street, he saw a spiritual Master with a few disciples. They were sitting on a lawn, a beautiful lawn, and some of the disciples were watering the grass.
This particular seeker approached the Master and said, "Master, all these disciples of yours listen to you no matter what you say. They believe in you and they are right when they listen to you. But I wish to say that I have something to tell you, even though you will not see eye to eye with me."
The Master said, "Truth is certainly not my sole monopoly. If you have discovered some truth, I will naturally accept your truth wholeheartedly. Now please tell me, what is the truth which you have discovered?"
So the seeker said, "My discovery is this: a worldly person cannot realise God so easily. I am a worldly human being, and I know that even to get a Master is simply impossible. I haven't found a spiritual teacher, for no spiritual teacher is satisfactory to me; so how will it be possible for me to realise God, which is infinitely more difficult? Just to get a Master is so difficult for me; to get Realisation in this life is simply impossible. Do you agree with me?"
The Master replied, "Unfortunately, I do not agree with you. Others may think that what you say is right, but at this point I would like to say that it is not so difficult either to get a Master or to get God-realisation."
The seeker was surprised, and even the disciples were to some extent amazed at the Master's remark, because most of them knew how hard it had been for them to get a spiritual Master, and God-realisation was still a far cry.
The Master said, "Now look here. Right now some of my disciples are watering the grass. There are tiny plants around here." The Master pointed out two plants, two very tiny plants. Then the Master took a gardening tool and dug up one of the plants. Taking both the root and the leaf, the whole plant, he went to another plant. There also he dug up the whole plant and replaced it with the first one. Then he took the second plant and replaced it where the first one had been.
Then the Master said, "Look here. This plant is man, and that plant is God. Now I am the Master. I came here and I touched this plant. It was a matter of a few minutes, just a couple of minutes. As soon as I touched it, immediately the plant gave me the divine response, and I took it and put it there where the plant called 'God' had been. Then I went to God the Plant. There I took the God Plant and got all His Compassion, Love, Joy, Delight, and put it over there where man the plant was. It was a matter only of a few minutes. I took man to God and brought God to man."
The new seeker said, "Master, I wish to be your disciple. Please initiate me."
"I shall initiate you shortly, my child." The Master continued, "If you feel that it is impossible, next to impossible to realise God, it means that your idea of God is wrong, your idea of spirituality is wrong. You are attached to the world, but if you had the same attachment towards God then you would see that you can easily reach God. Now when I go to God, I knock at the door. Immediately He opens it and comes to me. I say, 'Please come with me.' He comes with His Infinite Love, Joy, Blessings, and Compassion. Then I come and knock at your door, but when I knock at your door you don't open it. You keep your door closed, bolted. Naturally we, God and I, go back. Then when I want to take you to God's place I say to you, 'You come with me.' When I knock at God's door again, God says that as you didn't open your door when I brought Him to you, He will not open His door to you. If you had opened your door when I brought God as the Guest and if you had allowed God to come in, naturally God would also have allowed you to come into His Palace. So if you keep your heart's door open, God can easily come in.
"But when I approach you human beings, you disciples, immediately you are disturbed. You think that you have fear, you have doubt, you have emotional problems, you have vital problems, you have jealousy and so forth. You don't want to expose yourself; you want to hide. But this plant that I moved, man the plant, showed no fear, no doubt, no shyness when I touched it — absolutely nothing. It was not at all afraid of its own ignorance. It was thrilled that somebody was taking it to another place which was God. So when I touch you, when a spiritual Master blesses you or meditates on you, at that time if you offer your ignorance and your imperfections along with your devoted qualities, then it is so easy for the Master to take you totally to God. If not, it is next to impossible for the Master to do anything to transform the consciousness of the disciples or even to purify their consciousness. It is only an exchange of two plants. This is what the Master does when he deals with his spiritual children. One plant is God, another plant is man."
Then the Master slowly walked away.
Money masterfully spentThere was a spiritual Master who had quite a few disciples. Once a particular disciple of his gave him a sum of three thousand dollars. The poor Master very rarely got three thousand dollars at one time. So the Master was pleased, and the disciple was very happy and proud that he was in a position to give three thousand dollars to the Master.
A week later the disciple said to the Master quietly and politely, "Master, could you please tell me if you have already used the money or how you are going to use it, the amount that I have given you?"
So the Master said with utmost love, "My child, it is not fair of you to ask me how I am going to use it or whether I have used it already or not. But anyhow, since you are asking me, I will tell you."
By this time the disciple said, "No, no, Master. Forgive me, I won't ask you anymore. It is none of my business. I gave you what I had, and it was stupidity on my part to ask whether you have used it or how you are going to use it. Forgive me, forgive me."
But the Master said, "No, since you are anxious and curious to know how I have used your money or how I am going to use it, I would like to tell you. I have already used up your three thousand dollars!"
The disciple was very shocked. 'Three thousand dollars in ten days time! This poor Master, what can I do?'
The Master continued, "All right then, I shall tell you how I spent it. Three thousand dollars you gave me, and one thousand I have given to your worst enemy, David. Both of you have been at daggers drawn for the last few years. You hate him, he hates you. Now I have given him one thousand dollars although he does not need any money from anybody, since he is quite rich. Nonetheless I wanted to give him one thousand dollars. With the next one thousand dollars I bought a horse, my very own horse. I felt this horse to be the most beautiful creature I have ever seen, so I bought the horse to ride. The third thousand I gave to a distant acquaintance of mine who is a gambler."
The disciple said, "Master, you have used my money; I don't need any justification for how or why you have used it." But inside his heart he was saying, "Oh Master, what kind of a Master have I got? One thousand you give to my worst enemy; one thousand you use to buy a horse for your own pleasure, and one thousand you give away to a gambler."
So the Master said, "All right, you don't want justification, but I would like to offer justification to you. The first thousand I gave to your worst enemy, David. Now you know that both of you hate each other. He thinks that you don't have any fine qualities, any divine qualities and that you are my worst disciple. You also think that I made a mistake in accepting him as a disciple. That is your understanding, your feeling. Now I wanted to show him that you are not as bad as he thinks, that you have a wide, magnanimous heart. I wanted him to change his opinion of you overnight. I also wanted to bring his divine qualities to the fore. Both of you are enemies, which means that both of you are in constant competition. He wants to surpass you, you want to surpass him, consciously or unconsciously. So if I give him one thousand he will come to know that indirectly you have given him one thousand. Then he will come and give me four thousand. He will say, 'If John can give the Master one thousand, why don't I give him four thousand?' The next moment he will think, 'Oh, John gave that money to the Master devotedly and I must also give him what I have devotedly. I have plenty of money, I have much more than John has, so let me also give more money to the Master and I shall give it to him wholeheartedly and devotedly.'
"David will start with a competitive spirit, thinking that if you can do it, how is it that he can't do it? And another thing: in the beginning he will feel miserable because you have done something before he did, feeling that he has to be first in everything, but in the spiritual life there is no competition. And yet, if he does not want to waste one single second, naturally he will run as fast as he can.
"There really should be no competition between you who have given the money to your Master, and David, but if someone is conscientious, if someone is devoted in his offering as well as in his meditation, then he runs the fastest and reaches the goal sooner than the rest. So that is why I gave one thousand dollars to your worst enemy.
"Now, the one thousand to buy a horse. Why a horse? First of all, of course the horse is an animal. We came, all of us, from the animal kingdom. The horse represents speed. At the same time, when we think of our animal incarnations, we think of our animal qualities, and what is the most destructive or limiting quality we see in the animal? Passion. Now look. Once upon a time we were killed by our own passions, even in our human lives. Most human beings are killed by their own passions. Passion is their worst enemy. So this horse that I have bought reminds me of human passion in the animal kingdom.
"I am going to ride this particular horse. Why? I shall ride it because I am the Lord of this animal kingdom, I am the Lord of passion. Passion has come to me in the form of a horse, or let us say in the form of disciples, but I am riding them and I am taking them to the Destined Goal.
"When a human being was in the animal kingdom as a horse, it had only passion; there was no Goal. It was running blindly without any Goal. Now this very horse which represents the animal kingdom, with its senses running amuck, right now is caught by me. The passions of the horse, the passions of the disciples, are now under the control of the Master. The Master is the rider, the Lord. He is seated on the horse and taking the horse to its Destined Goal. In doing so, he is taking the disciples to the Goal. The Master says, 'Look, my Goal is the Highest and I am carrying you with all of your passions which are under my control. Now I am taking you to your Destined Goal. Come with me.'
"All right, that is the horse. Now the gambler, this distant gambler. The gambler was not my disciple but I gave the gambler one thousand dollars. The gambler was exceedingly happy, and gambled it, and from one thousand he made ten thousand dollars overnight. He was so happy, but he did not want to put the money in the bank. He wanted to keep the money at his own place, so that he could count the bills every day. That gave him the greatest joy. If he kept the money in the bank he would not be able to count it. There are many businessmen who count their bills ten times at least before they go to bed, otherwise they don't have a proper night's sleep. This gambler didn't have proper sleep. Every night he used to count his ten thousand dollars.
"One day he was away for a while, and a thief entered his place and robbed him. All his money was stolen. Look at his miserable plight: ten thousand dollars was stolen! He became really mad with grief.
"Then the following day he came to me and said. 'You gave me one thousand dollars. You know that I made ten thousand dollars from it. I was so happy, but now all my money has been stolen. Please give me some money once again and I will be really grateful to you.'
"So then I asked this gambler, 'Tell me, when you made ten thousand dollars from one thousand dollars, were you happy?'
"'Happy is the word! How happy I was! I thought that I was going to be a multi-millionaire soon.'
"'Then what happened?'
"'Oh, my money was stolen and now again I am the same beggar.'
"'You see, you could not preserve the joy that you got from the ten thousand dollars. It did not remain even for a week. Somebody stole it. Now you will say, "Oh, I made a mistake. This time when I get money I will put it in the bank and nobody will be able to steal it." That is also not true for there are many banks being robbed. Again, you may find it difficult to get your money out of the bank anytime you want it, and always you will think of the joy that you used to get by counting the money every day in the evening. Again, if the money is at your place, you can see it right in front of your eyes every second. Look, you are not getting the constant joy either by having the money at your place or having the money in the bank. At home money is totally unsafe, and in the bank there is no absolute guarantee.'
"So the gambler said, 'Then how can I have real joy, and constant joy?'
"'You will get real joy, constant joy, infinite joy, only if you meditate with me, and this joy that I will give you can never be stolen by anybody. Once I give you inner joy, boundless joy, no thief can enter into your heart and steal it. You don't have to go to the bank, and you don't have to count it. You will feel it constantly. It will grow. You will see this infinite joy that I can give you and it will be everlasting joy.'
"The gambler said, 'I need that everlasting joy. May I be your disciple?'"
The gambler was made a disciple and became the best disciple.
So this is how the Master spent the three thousand dollars. One thousand went to the enemy of the giver, one thousand went to buy a horse, and one thousand was given away to a gambler.
Father, you are my best giftThere was a villager who had four children. Once he had to go to the city. He asked his children what they would like him to bring them from the city. His eldest son said that he wanted a football. The next youngest one said he would like to have a kite, and the third one said he would like to have a toy. The fourth, being the youngest, said,
"Father, I don't want to get anything from you. I do not need anything. I only want you. I want you only. You are my best gift. Come back as soon as possible."
Now the father went to the city to do his own work, and he did not forget to bring the football, the kite, and the toy for his elder children. When he returned he brought the gifts in, and as soon as he entered the house he called out to the servant. His servant came and stood before the master, and the master gave the three presents to him and said,
"Now you give these presents to my children. He who wanted the football will get the football; he who wanted the kite will get the kite; and the one who wanted the toy will get it."
Then the father ran towards the youngest child and embraced him and blessed him. The other three children ran towards their father and said,
"Father, how is it that you are not coming to us? You want to see only the youngest."
The father said, "Well my children, you didn't want me. He wanted me. You wanted to have gifts, so I brought you your gifts. I sent your gifts through my servant. This child, my youngest and sweetest child, wants me only, so I come to him and not to you."
Now, coming back to the real world, I am your spiritual Father, and when I go away some of you will say, "This time when Guru comes back he will be nicer, sweeter, and more understanding. He will give us joy, peace, and concern." Some of you will think that I am going to bring back joy, while others will be thinking, "He will be nicer to us." Still others will think that I will feed them wonderful news.
There will be another group, you can call it the fourth or best category of disciples, who will only want me to come back, who will want me only. They will not need anything from me. Of course when the Master comes back, naturally the Master will give joy, light, peace, and bliss to all. Those who expect something may get what they want, but those who want the Master only will naturally get him. Something more — they will get all that the Master has and all that the Master is.
The supreme opportunity lostThere was a spiritual Master who had quite a few disciples. This spiritual Master happened to be a writer as well. He wrote considerably. Once a brilliant idea flashed across his mind. He asked some of his selected disciples a few questions pertaining to his writings. Consciously or unconsciously he cherished the hope that these particular disciples would be so familiar with his writings that they would be able to answer his questions. So one day he invited six of his selected disciples whom he thought to be authorities on his writings to come and talk with him. He asked each individual disciple separate questions and examined his familiarity with his works. To his utter sorrow and disgust all his disciples, these six disciples, failed. They could not give adequate answers to his questions on his writings.
Then he said to these disciples, "I am sure each of you here knows something from my writings by heart. You have failed me in answering questions from my writings, but you will be able to recite something soulfully from my writings."
The six disciples all said immediately, "Yes, we can easily do that. We can recite quite a few things."
The Master said, "You don't have to recite many things. Only recite four or five lines from my writings, either from the prose or from the poetry. If any of you can recite something most soulfully, I will give him whatever he wants. I will fulfil his heart's desire."
Naturally all of them thought it would be easier to recite something soulfully from the Master's poetry than from his prose, so one by one, they started reciting a few lines of the Master's poetry.
The first one recited. The Master said, "I am sorry, it is not soulful." The second one recited and the Master said, "I am sorry, it is not correct." The third one recited but the Master was dissatisfied. The fourth one, no. The fifth one, no again. Then the sixth stood up and recited something. Although it was not entirely soulful, it was soulful to some extent.
The Master said, "Nobody has recited anything most soulfully, but you have played your part more successfully than the rest. I have to be pleased with you to some extent. Now I wish you to ask for any boon, and I will give it to you."
The disciple was thrilled. "Oh, you will give anything to me? Then please give me your deer."
The Master had a tamed deer. He was very fond of this deer. The disciple thought that this was something that he could cherish all his life. The Master would pass away one day, but the disciple would be able to cherish this deer which was an object of the Master's great love and concern. The deer in spiritual symbolism is the sign of the fastest progress, and the Master's deer would remind him of his spiritual life. So he wanted to have this deer, his Master's deer. The Master immediately gave it to him.
"Yes, you can have my deer, if that is the thing you want and if you consider it to be the most valuable and cherished prize. Naturally if you feel that that will give you the greatest joy, the greatest honour, you shall have it."
The Master gave the deer to the disciple immediately and the disciple was so happy, so thrilled that he had been given the Master's most valued possession.
Then the Master said to the disciple, "I thought that you had more wisdom than what you have evinced right now. When I gave you the opportunity to ask for something, something that would give you the greatest joy and the greatest honour, you could have used your brain. Is there anything that can make a disciple more happy and more proud than to sit upon the throne of the Master whom he represents, or whose representative he would like to be in the future, and whom he wants to imitate? You didn't think to ask for my throne. If you had asked for my throne I would have given it to you, but you didn't."
The Master continued, "If you had asked me for my throne I would have made you sit on it, and that would have been the highest honour and the greatest joy you could have received. But mind you, there is something still greater, infinitely greater than this joy.
"When I asked you to tell me about your desire, the desire that you wanted me to fulfil, if you had at that time said, 'Master, you give me what you feel best for me,' if you said that, then immediately I would have said, 'I place you on the throne inside my heart. You will be one with me. Your life-breath and my life-breath will be united forever through eternity. I place you in the eternal garden of my heart. There is a golden throne for you and there you will be seated through eternity.' If you had said, 'I don't want to make the selection. You make the choice for me,' my heartbeat and your heartbeat would respond together through eternity, and my heartbeat would be your throne forever. The Absolute Supreme, acting through me, would do everything for your ultimate fulfilment."
The real discipleThere was a spiritual Master who was really fine and great. He had many, many disciples. Most of them fortunately were sincere. One day he was giving a discourse. One of his old disciples, a woman, came and stood right in front of him. This particular disciple on that day had brought her three daughters with her. They were twelve years, fourteen years and sixteen years of age.
The Master with all his love and affection, blessed these three young girls. Then he asked them what they would like to be. The fourteen-year-old girl said that she would like to be a Yogi like this Master. The sixteen-year-old girl said she would like to be a greater Yogi than the Master. The twelve-year-old girl said she would like to be the most devoted disciple of the Master.
The Master asked the fourteen-year-old girl why she would like to be a Yogi like the Master.
She said, "I have heard many stories from my mother about you and I was deeply impressed with these stories, She told me that you can read everybody's mind, and you can work for many, many hours without needing rest or sleep like us. You can go on working and you don't have to sleep eight or ten hours like us. Also if you don't want to eat material food, you can get spiritual food and yet remain alive. Also you can speak to human beings who have left the body; you can speak to people who are in the other world. These are the reasons why I want to be a Yogi like you."
The Master then asked the sixteen-year-old girl why she would like to surpass him.
She said, "Everybody appreciates you, admires you and adores you. You have hundreds and hundreds of disciples, and I feel that if I can be a greater Yogi than you, then I will have thousands and thousands of disciples who will bow down to me, touch my feet, kiss my feet and worship me like God. That is why I want to be greater than you. If I become greater than you, then I will draw more appreciation, more admiration and more adoration from the entire world. So you can see why I want to be greater than you."
The Master next asked the youngest one, the twelve-year-old, "Why do you want to be my most devoted disciple?"
She said, "My mother says that she is your very devoted disciple. She says that you have many, many disciples, but, according to my mother, there are very few who are deeply devoted to you. Now, I feel that if I could be most devoted to you then I would get all your love, affection and blessings. My mother is so happy and so pleased that she is one of your very devoted disciples, but I want to be the most devoted so that I can become your dearest disciple."
The Master said, "Wonderful."
Then he again asked the eldest girl, sixteen years old, "You want to become greater than I?"
"And you have given me the reasons. You want to become greater than I so that you can draw the admiration of the entire world. Your motive is to become greater than I, and not to love God for God's sake, not to pray to God to realise God, or to do something great for humanity. Since this is not your aim, you can never be greater than I because your very motive is wrong. You don't want to serve mankind, you don't want to realise God, you don't want to love God for God's sake. What you want is only to have the world touch your feet. No, God will not make you greater than I."
Next he said to the fourteen-year-old girl, "You want to be a Yogi like me. The reasons that you gave for wanting to become a Yogi are ridiculous. You want to read somebody's mind. When somebody is thinking ill of you, if you read his mind, immediately you will enter into a quarrel. But, if somebody speaks highly of you, just for a fleeting second he may give you joy. And again, you will doubt whether he is sincerely thinking well of you or whether it is just a kind of mental flattery. If this is the reason that you want to read someone's mind, for the sake of curiosity, then this is not Yoga at all.
"Now you want to be a Yogi so that you can go without food or without sleep. Well, a thief does not sleep at night. He has to commit his theft. At night, he moves here and there, seeing if he can steal anything. So, if that is your motive, if you just want to be a Yogi so that you don't have to sleep, then you are in no way better than a thief; and if you want to be a Yogi so that you don't have to eat, then I can tell you that a snake eats only two or three times a year. In that way you are no better than a snake. You don't want to be a snake. You don't want to be a thief. Thieves and snakes can do the very things you want to accomplish by becoming a Yogi.
"Then you want to speak to your relatives who have left the body. Now, if you want to do that, you don't have to become a Yogi. In order to become a Yogi you have to work very, very hard. You have to meditate for many, many years. You just go to a successful medium, give him a dollar or two and he will be able to tell you where your relatives are. Sometimes, of course, he may give you wrong information, but sometimes he will be able to give you correct information. Anyhow, he will be able to satisfy your curiosity. Just for a couple of dollars you will be able to get the message.
"Now, if you really want to bring down your relatives' souls, you have to be extremely pure. If the souls you invoke, your relatives' souls, are on a higher level of consciousness, and if you want to bring them into you, right in front of you, then you have to realise the fact that they are coming from a very, very distant world. When they come, if you are impure, if you are not aspiring, it is a real torture for them. They come to you as if crossing a painful forest, full of thorns. That is the kind of torture they go through when you invoke relatives who have passed away. So, actually if you really love them, you won't call them and torture them. If you really want to know what they are doing, then you should go to some spiritual Master, and if he sees that you have a sincere, genuine cry, he may help you. But if you want to become a Yogi to bring messages from departed relatives, it is sheer stupidity.
"On becoming a Yogi, you must work for God and for the world. You should identify yourself with the whole universe. You should try to help humanity; then only will God be pleased with you. But since your motives are not right, God will not make you a Yogi like me. You cannot be a Yogi like me because you do not want God for a divine purpose. You only want God for ulterior motives: to read somebody's mind, to live without sleep or food, to bring down the souls of your relatives so you can get striking stories from them. Since you want to be a Yogi only for these silly purposes, you will never become a Yogi."
Then he turned to the youngest sister and asked her, "You tell me that you want to be my most devoted disciple. Why? Is it because you feel that if you become my most devoted disciple, everybody will appreciate you and admire you, and you will be very happy, very proud? Or is it because, by becoming my most devoted disciple, you will be able to do my work most satisfactorily? If you are devoted, then only will you try to do things perfectly. If you are not devoted, you won't do things sincerely and perfectly. Is it for my sake, that is to say, to help me in my mission with utmost sincerity, with utmost concern, that you want to be my most devoted disciple; or is it just to be proud because others will admire you when you become my most devoted disciple?"
She said, "No, I want to be your most devoted disciple because I feel that only then will I be able to work for you most sincerely and most perfectly. I feel that if I can be your most devoted disciple, then I can be of real service to you. Otherwise, my imperfection will not allow me to be of any real service to you. It is only to be of service to you, to please you in your own way, that I would like to be your most devoted disciple."
The Master immediately blessed her with all his heart's love, affection, appreciation and admiration.
He said, "I, at this very moment, make you my most devoted disciple."
In front of everyone he made the announcement: "This little girl of twelve is my most devoted disciple. Her one sister who wants to be a Yogi like me, and the other who even wants to surpass me cannot do so because of their wrong approaches to the spiritual life. If their approaches were true and sincere, I would have blessed both of them, saying that I wanted them to be as great as I am, that I wanted them even to be far superior to me. Why should they be of my calibre? God's Blessing dawns on everybody if one wants to fulfil God in a true way, a more fulfilling way. Naturally God will bless you all, but not for pride and vanity. Since their approaches were wrong, they cannot be as great as I am; they cannot surpass me. But the little one, their youngest sister, her approach was most sincere, most genuine. That is why she becomes my dearest disciple, my most devoted disciple. She is my real pride."
Master's peerless pride — a real discipleThree elderly women once went to a spiritual Master. Each of their sons had sat for the Matriculation Examination. In order to know the results of the examination, these women came to the spiritual Master.
The spiritual Master gave each a different answer. To the first he said, "It is doubtful." To the second he said, "It is a hopeless case." To the third he said, "Your son will definitely pass the examination."
A few days later the results came out in the newspaper. In the case of the one where the Master had said, "Doubtful," the boy passed. In the case where the Master had said that the boy would not pass at all, "a hopeless case," he passed with credit. In the case where he had said, "He will definitely pass," the boy failed. The Master's prophecies all went wrong.
Of the three women, two mercilessly ridiculed the Master's prophecy. But the mother whose son failed when she had been told by the Master that he would positively pass, was the only woman to retain her faith in the Master and to come back to him. The others did not turn up again, although they were more than delighted that their sons had passed the examination.
The lady whose son failed came to visit the Master. The newspaper was right in front of the Master, and, thinking that the Master might be embarrassed, she grabbed the newspaper and threw it aside. She was still not satisfied. She found the page where the result was mentioned and tore it into pieces.
At this the Master said, "What are you doing, and how is it that you have come back to me? Your son has failed. In the other two cases I predicted that their sons would fail, but they have passed. Those ladies could easily have come to me with smiling faces. But knowing perfectly well that your son has failed, how is it that you have come to me?"
The woman came closer and touched the feet of the Master and said, "Master, I came to you with my friends out of curiosity, but when I saw you meditating and looking at us, smiling, I saw a Divine Light in your face. True, my son has failed the examination. What does it matter? Even if he had passed, it would not have mattered much. To pass or fail in the Matriculation is not a matter of life and death. But I have never seen in any human face the Light that I have seen in you. My son is not at home, otherwise I would have brought him and placed him at your feet."
The Master said, "Your son will come!"
The mother said, "Certainly he will. My son has implicit faith in me. He is all love for me. My son is bound to come to you. I will bring my sister, too. My husband is now away in the city, but when he comes back I shall bring him along with my children. From now on, we are all going to be your disciples. And if my son fails next time also, rest assured my Master, we will not lose faith in you. We come to the spiritual Master for spiritual light, divine love, heavenly blessings, and constant guidance, and not for school results for our children."
The Master blessed the disciple and said, "To have a disciple like you is to cherish the pride of a peerless jewel."
Return to the sourceThere was an American lady who wanted to go to India. She was extremely spiritual. However, she thought that only in India would she meet her Guru, her Master. For twenty long years she had saved her money, and when she had amassed a considerable sum she was ready to go to India.
She bought her ticket. On the eve of her departure an angel came to her in her dream and said to her, "You fool, do not go to India. Your Master is here in America. Do not go. Tomorrow at eleven o'clock in the morning he will knock at your door and you will receive him with all your heart's love, devotion, and surrender." She believed the message of this angel.
The following day the Master did knock at her door. He came in, and she was completely thrilled. She was overjoyed to see her Guru. The Master's face was radiating with divine, celestial Light, Peace, and Power.
Now the first thing the lady did was to bow down to the Master and offer him the money that she had been saving to spend in India. Secondly she said, "Here is the ticket, for I am not going to India. I will get the money refunded and will offer you this whole amount. You are my Master, and I am most grateful that you have come to me and that I do not have to go to India in search of my Master."
The Master was a bit sad. The lady could not account for it. She said, "Master, why are you so sad? I am not going to India and I have offered you all my money."
The Master said, "If you don't please me, how can I be satisfied?"
She said, "What more can I do? I am giving you all my joy. I am seventy years old, and all the joy that I have received in my life I am offering to you: all my joy, all my divine qualities. I prayed to God for so many years and if I deserve any merit from my prayers and meditations, I wish to offer you the fruits of all my prayers and meditations."
The Master again showed a sad face, and the lady said, "Master, what can I do? I have already given you all my merits, my divine qualities. I have given them all to you. What I have, I have given you. Now if I have bad qualities, undivine qualities, which I undoubtedly have, if you want me to give them to you, then I am ready. My jealousy, my fear, my hatred of certain people, all my undivine qualities also I have given you. I am now integrally whole. I have given you everything I possess. What I have and what I am I have given you."
But still the Master showed a sad face. She said, "What more can I give you? I have given you what I have, what I am; now what else do you want? How can I make you happy?"
The Master said, "Go deep within, then you will be able to make me happy."
She thought and thought, and she meditated for some time, and then said, "Oh Master, I have come to know how I can make you most happy. I have come from you and I am entering into you. I came from your Infinite Source, and I am again entering into the Eternal Source."
Immediately the Master gave the sweetest smile, the most divine smile.
"You have understood, and you have made me truly happy. You said, 'I came from you. I am entering back into you.' When the disciple has this kind of realisation, then the Master and the disciple become one. The Master and the disciple become part and parcel of each other: one body, one heart, one soul."
I came from you, I am entering into you, I am yours.
This was the great realisation the seeker had, and the Master accepted her wholeheartedly. He said, "You are now my true disciple."
Cherished doubt is destruction, surrendered doubt is liberationPrologue
I have just composed a story and this story is about doubt. This story applies to each and every one here without exception. It also applies to all spiritual seekers who have Masters. The spiritual life and, it seems, the life of doubt go together in the beginning just as night and day, darkness and light go together. Then there comes a time when there is no darkness; it is all light. In the spiritual life also, when we start our journey, doubt may capture us and interfere with our journey. But when once we get a few experiences, once we are well established in our spiritual life, or once we become really sincere in our spiritual life, then doubt has to disappear. There can be no doubt at that time, no shadow of doubt, for it is all certainty. However, in certainty also there are degrees. When we start out in the spiritual life we are not fully certain; but there comes a time after we have covered a few steps in our spiritual life, when all is dead certainty. The possibility of God-Realisation becomes the greatest factor, undeniable and inevitable. There can be no shadow of doubt about it.
There was a great spiritual Master who had hundreds of disciples. Unfortunately among them he had a few disciples who were constant victims to doubt. They used to indulge in doubts consciously and deliberately. They doubted his spiritual height, they doubted his motives for teaching, they doubted his moral qualities, and they doubted his methods of dealing with the disciples. It came to a point where he found it simply impossible to allow these disciples to stay in his ashram, for they were poisoning the sincere seekers.
One day he gave a wonderful talk, a truly extraordinary talk on doubt. When the talk was over, four of his disciples stood up and came to speak to him separately.
"Master, I doubt you. I am sorry, but I doubt you."
The Master said, "You should feel sorry."
The second one said, "Master, I am ashamed of my behaviour. I doubt you, but I can't help it."
The Master said, "You should be ashamed of your behaviour."
The third one said, "Master, I curse myself, for I doubt you."
The Master said, "Certainly you should curse yourself."
And the fourth one said, "Master, I doubt you, true. But right now I offer you all my doubts. I want my life to be in your hands. I want to be eternally at your feet. Please replace my doubt with faith. Whether you replace it or not, please allow me to be at your feet."
The Master said, "Thank you my child. Now I shall tell you a few things about doubt."
Then the Master said to the first three disciples, "I have tolerated you three for the last eight years. I cannot tolerate you any longer. Today you have to leave my ashram, and never will you be permitted to return. So today you have to leave my place for good."
The Master then returned and blessed the disciple who wanted his life to be totally dedicated, who wanted only to be eternally at the Master's feet. The Master said very seriously, "My son, you know when you disciples doubt me, I do not get angry with you. Now you may say, 'If you don't get angry with us, then how is it that today you have turned away those three disciples?' Now I have to tell you that it is not my decision. This decision has come from God. I am willing to allow them to stay in the ashram as long as they want to, but the decision has come from above and I am helpless. So I have just executed God's Will, and now they have to leave the ashram. When you doubt me I do not get angry with you, but God does get angry with you people.
"You know I am the Bridge between humanity and divinity. God has created me, this Bridge. Now, if you see some minor faults in the Bridge, if you see that the Bridge is lacking in something and needs more nails at a particular point, or the Bridge could be more attractive, or more refined, then whom are you blaming unconsciously? The Bridge-Maker, who is God. Now you are finding faults with God's Bridge. God consciously has made this Bridge so that He can bring to Himself many new passengers, new spiritual seekers who are able to walk on the Bridge, and who will cross the Bridge to come to Him. It is the Bridge that allows the passengers, the seekers, to go to God, and God Himself has made that Bridge. So the Bridge is not responsible, for it knows that it is God who has made it that way. That is why it is God and not the Bridge who is displeased with the doubters.
"When you live in doubt, you have to know immediately that you have covered your eyes. You are walking with blind eyes. And then what happens? When you are blind, how will you run towards your Goal? You cannot see. And when you doubt, you deliberately throw ink on the Master. If the Master is kind enough, he will accept your ink, the ink that you have spilled on him. But if he is not kind, he will just slap you and say, 'You must leave the ashram!' But again, some Masters are like hardest stones, like adamantine walls. They do not allow this doubt to enter into the disciples; they simply threaten the disciples who are cherishing doubts.
"Now you have friends and you have enemies. Do you allow your enemy to enter into your home? Never! Do you allow a thief to enter into your home? Never! Then you have to know that your doubt is your worst enemy, and your doubt is your worst thief. This thief will rob you of all your inner wealth, and this enemy, doubt, will expose you before the public. So you have to be careful of this enemy and thief.
"At the same time you must not cherish false ideas about spiritual Masters. You feel that if he is a spiritual Master, then he cannot do this, or he can do this. Now why should you judge the spiritual Master in your own way? What right have you? You have come to the spiritual Master; he has not come and begged you, 'You have to be my disciple, I need you badly. If you don't become my disciple then the entire mission will be ruined'. No. It is you who have come to the Master: You stick to him, you stick to his path, and try to become part and parcel of his spiritual family.
"Now when you doubt a spiritual Master you have to know on what strength you are doubting him. Your vision is limited, your understanding is very limited and your store of inner truth is very limited. You start doubting a spiritual giant. What he says, what he does you judge solely on the strength of your own limited insights. If you doubt him, you doubt his realisation. What he is and does is based solely on the strength of his own realisation. If you doubt his realisation, it is up to you to leave him immediately. Why do you not do that?
"Now what can you know of a Master's realisation? You have your own idea of his spiritual calibre, but you don't know what realisation is or what realisation means. If you expect from his realisation constant miracles or something which will satisfy your mind, then you are deplorably mistaken. He is a spiritual Master, and you ask for proof. Why should he give you proof? He is not soliciting your patronage. It is you who come to him thinking that he has realisation. But if you feel that his realisation is not true, not perfect, then you can leave him.
"If you go into a shop you find many things there. You may browse a little and perhaps you feel that the things the shop has do not satisfy you. Before you enter the shop you felt, 'Oh, perhaps the thing that I want will be in there'. But when you entered into the shop and saw that the thing you wanted was not there, naturally you left. You did not stay in the shop indefinitely.
"If you are sincere enough and go deep within to bask in the realisation of your spiritual Master, you are bound to feel that you are standing in front of a spiritual sun. All the divine brilliance and lustre of the sun will enter into you. If you expect Peace, Light and Bliss from the Master, then his realisation will give them to you. But if you want miracle after miracle, if you want constant success in your life, if you want constant affection and love from the Master, or if you want admiration from him, then his realisation is going to disappoint you. You have to know that a disciple comes to the Master only for realisation. Needless to say the Master has the realisation. You say, 'Where is the proof?' Now when you go to a doctor, the doctor gives you medicine and you are cured. Similarly, if you really cry for realisation, and if the Master is pleased with your aspiration, naturally he will fulfil your heart's inner cry.
"Sometimes the Master seems to say contradictory things. For example, the Master writes, 'Listen to the dictates of your soul. Then your life will realise the truth.' Now, when you say that you do listen to the dictates of your soul, and you tell the Master what you have heard, he might say, 'It is not true.' So then you doubt the Master. Poor Master, out of his infinite affection, concern and compassion he says, 'Look here, I told you to listen to the dictates of your soul, but first of all, you do not know where the soul is. You have never had the experience of your soul, but you have tried to listen to its dictates. It is extremely difficult to do. One has to meditate for years and years'. Now, the vital being that is around the soul, around the heart often plays damaging mischief. It whispers in a way similar to the soul. Then you think that it is the soul's message that you are hearing. The Master, on the strength of his highest realisation, knows where your soul is. Your soul in fact is all the time in constant communion with the Master. But you think what the Master says is wrong because you think you are getting the true message from your soul. Where does the Master stand? The Master says to you, 'Listen to your soul', but it has to be the real soul in you, it has to be the real inner being, the real voice. And once you get the real voice, you will see that what the Master says is absolutely true.
"In the same way, the Supreme speaks through the Master, and the Master speaks through the soul to you. But when, unfortunately, you have not seen the real soul, and are not getting its message, then you create confusion for the Master. The Master knows where the light is, and immediately he clears away the confusion that you create for him. Now the Master does this with the idea that you would listen to him, that you would have faith in him. If you had complete faith in your own inner life, in your own capacity, then you would not have come to the Master. Just because you felt that your inner capacity, your inner aspiration and inspiration were not enough for you to realise God, you came to the Master.
"The Master is the boatman. After entering into his boat, if you see that the Master is not rowing the boat well, and if you try to start rowing the boat, it will capsize. Either it will capsize or it will not move an inch. Now, if you really want to make progress, then stay in the Master's boat. Sleep if you want to, but do not try to find fault with the Master's rowing of the boat, because if you start finding fault, the Master will naturally be displeased and he will ask you to leave. Now if you prefer to consciously ignore what the Master is doing, how hard he is working, how hard it is to row the boat, there is no harm; you can sleep in perfect peace. The Master will take you to the real goal, the promised goal.
"If you feel, 'Master said this and that, but it has not happened, and I don't think it is going to happen at all', then you start doubting him. Time has passed, and the thing has not yet taken place. But you have to know that God has every right to change His plans; it is not that the Master said something wrong. The cosmic laws are changed by God many, many times. He is not bound by His plans, not even bound by His promise. Sometimes God makes a promise that He will do this or that. Then He sees that if He does not keep the promise at the particular time it will in fact help the person more. If the person doubts Him or has no faith in Him, it does not bother Him at all. But God wants to do a great favour by doing the best thing at the right moment. So the Master is helpless. When God tells the Master to say something, the Master says it and if God changes the plan, the poor Master is blamed because the disciple does not see God at all in the picture. The disciple immediately thinks, 'Oh, Master told something wrong, he is like an ordinary human being. He says incorrect things and so what is the use of staying with the Master?' Now what can the poor Master do? He is at the mercy of God's dictates, and here also he is at the mercy of the disciples' ignorance.
"Now, if one really loves the Master and comes to the Master only for spiritual realisation and the highest Truth, then one will say, 'Master, you say that something is going to happen. It is up to you; it is your promise. But if you don't want to fulfil it, that means there is some higher purpose behind it. Without any purpose you will not change your plan. It is up to you whether to fulfil your promise or not. If you don't fulfil it, I have to feel that there is a better plan working inside you'. In that way you establish more faith in your Master. It is your faith that expedites your liberation and your realisation. If you do not build your life on faith, then it is simply useless to accept the spiritual life.
"Who is the happiest man? Not he who doubts, but he who has faith in the Master. Who is really the happiest man? He who feels that the Master has faith in him, that is to say, in the disciple. If the disciple feels that the Master has no faith in him, then he can really feel that his life is truly miserable."
The disciple said, "Master, from now on you are my only faith. From now on you are my inner voice. From now on you are my soul. From now on you are my life's aspiration. From now on you are my life's only goal, my eternal goal. I am eternally yours. You speak through me. I shall not listen to the book, I shall not listen to my own voice, inner or outer, but I shall live only by placing my outer life and inner breath at your feet. You speak through me, you speak on my behalf. You are my only joy, love, delight and goal. You are my all."
My days are numberedThere was once an old Yogi. He was about eighty years old. He couldn't see properly and he couldn't write properly. He couldn't work properly at that age.
One day he told four of his dearest, closest disciples that he would live on earth only for one more month. His days were numbered, and in this fleeting month, if they had anything to say to him or ask him, he would most gladly try to fulfil their requests.
Now out of these four, one immediately said, "Guru, it is not true. You can't leave us in a month's time. We love you, and you love us. We will miss you. You will miss us, too. You are just joking."
The second disciple said, "Master, Guru, I can't bear this. Please stay here on earth for another ten years. You are only eighty years old. Ninety is the right age. You should stay on earth at least ninety years; then on the day you leave the body please, please, take me with you. I am now with you and I want to be with you always. Wherever you are this humble servant would like to be there. This is my only prayer: to be with you. I beg you to stay here on earth, but if you don't want to stay here on earth for another ten years, then take me whenever you go. I wish to be at your feet all the time. Master, this is my only desire."
Now the third disciple came and said, "Guru, you want to leave us? Well, we shall miss you. You, too, will miss us. But one thing I assure you, your mission will not fail. We shall take care of your mission. We will propagate your views. We shall go from one place to another and we shall spread your teaching. Don't worry, don't worry. We shall be truly worthy of your mission. Master, if you want to leave, you can leave your body. Rest assured we shall take care of your mission."
Then the fourth disciple said, "Master, I want only one favour from you: please tell me what I should do. Should I go with you and leave the body because I shall miss you so badly? Or do you want me to work for you here on earth? If you want me to work for you, I am ready to stay on earth. If you want me to come with you and work in heaven, I am ready to do that. I have no personal choice, my Lord. Please tell me, Master."
The Master said to the fourth disciple, "You have received the Light. My child, go and enter into the world. When I leave the body, you will enter into the world. I want you to get married and to have children. Your children will receive Light from you, and your children will offer Light to their children, and in this way my spiritual family will remain and grow. You will go from door to door offering my Light. Your new life will not at all stand in the way of your spiritual practice, your inner discipline. I have full confidence in you. Get married when I leave the body; get married and have children. Teach them about my life and show them my Light, and they will propagate my views all over the world. My child, you are my purest pride."
Then the Master turned to the one who had told him not to worry, that he and others would take care of the Master's mission. The Master said, "Wonderful. I want you to try. I am making you the head of my ashram, and I wish you from today (for I will be here on earth for another month) to run my ashram. You can start to tell people what they should do and what they should not do. You officiate on my behalf during my presence."
Now the young man was extremely delighted to hear this and he immediately started ordering people, "Do this, don't do that." He was commanding his brother and sister disciples to do things and ordering them around, but nobody paid any attention to him. They just laughed and laughed at him. Two days later he went to the Master and said, "Master, what am I going to do? Nobody listens to me."
The Master said, "Then what am I going to do? You said that in my absence you would be able to take care of my mission. Here you can't even take care of my few disciples, and you think the world will listen to you? My disciples do not listen to you even when I give you the authority. You can't run my ashram even in my presence. People don't listen to you; my disciples don't listen to you. They resent your commands intensely, and you expect that in my absence you will be able to run my ashram and fulfil my mission? Oh, divinely foolish disciple of mine!"
This particular disciple bowed down to the Master with utmost sorrow, shame and despair.
Then the Master turned to the disciple who wanted to go with the Master when the Master left the body. He didn't want to stay one day more on earth. The Master said, "Your love for me is most precious for both of us. Just for me you want to stay with me all the time and serve me. If I am on earth you want to stay on earth. If I am in heaven you want to stay in heaven to serve me. Since this is your prayer, this is your aspiration, then I give you a boon: the day I leave the body, God will take you also to heaven. There you will be able to work with me and for me. Heaven is also a place of work. There also we have many things to do. In this world we work together, in the other world also we shall work together. You are my joy. You are my concern. You are my pride."
Then the Master turned to the first disciple and said, "You don't believe that I will leave the body. You feel that I am just talking. Now here I wish to say that if you don't believe what I have said today, then you won't believe my statement tomorrow. If I say something, you won't believe it. These disbelievers are like slow poison. You are a disbeliever and you will spread poison in our ashram. Even in my presence you don't believe me and you don't have faith in me. How then are you going to have faith in me in my absence? It is impossible. This disbelief is like a contagious disease. When you come and meditate with my other disciples, if I say something you don't believe, then your disease will spread all around and the others will all be affected. I don't want you to be in my ashram. You had better leave. This ashram is only for those who have faith in me, who have faith in my mission, who have faith in my activities, who have complete faith in what I say and what I do. If you don't have this total faith, then this place is not meant for you. I do not want my centre, my ashram, to be polluted by a disbeliever like you."
At the month's end the Master passed from his body.
Who is more important — Guru or God?One day a spiritual Master happened to see a sad quarrel, a dispute between two of his disciples. The two disciples were almost fighting. So the Master approached them and said, "Now what is the matter? Why are you quarrelling and fighting?"
Both of them cried out, "Master, Master help us! We need your guidance. We need your light."
The Master said, "If both of you speak together, I cannot do any justice to you. So tell me, one of you, what is actually bothering you."
So one of them said, "Master, the bone of contention is you and nobody else."
The disciple continued, "He says that the Master, the Guru, is more important than God. I say, impossible, God is more important. He says the Guru is more important because the Guru shows the way, paves the way, and the Guru takes the disciple to God. He says also that though God cares for everyone, even the sleeping and unaspiring, if one wants immediate concern and blessing from God, it is through the Guru that one can have it. That is why the Guru is more important.
"But I say, no. It is God who has given this kind of love and compassion to the Guru, and God has made the Guru an instrument to help mankind. So to me, God is more important.
"He says that there is a Goal. True, there is a Goal, but if somebody doesn't take him to that Goal, that somebody being his Guru, then God will always remain a far cry. He says the Goal may be there, but who is taking me to the Goal? I can't go alone, I don't know the road. So my Guru is more important because the Goal will not come to me.
"I say, no. The Goal may not come to me, but the Goal is God. Now if your Guru takes you to the Goal, God, and then at that point if God does not care for you, then where is the importance of the messenger? The Guru can take someone near the Goal, but if the Goal doesn't care for that person, then naturally it is useless. A human being can take somebody to a Master, to a boss, but if the boss is not pleased with the person that the Guru has brought, then naturally the case is hopeless. The most important thing is not who has taken the disciple, but who is pleased with the disciple. If God is pleased with someone then that is more than enough.
"Now he says that if Guru accepts someone as his dearest disciple, then he takes on his shoulders the Law of Karma. It is like a father. When the father knows that the son has done something wrong and the father wants to save the son, the father takes the punishment on himself. This is the Guru. But God is the Universal Father. He deals with His Cosmic Law. If we do something wrong, God will give us the consequences; we shall be punished. He feels that Guru is more important, because Guru takes the punishment that the disciple deserves on his own shoulders, whereas God will always follow His Cosmic Law.
"But I say, no, God is not punishing us, God is giving us only experience. Who is punishing whom? God is having His own experience in us and through us, so we are not getting any punishment, but rather God is enjoying or suffering through us, in us.
"Moreover, God existed before the Guru came into the manifestation, and God will continue to be God long after the Guru leaves the field of manifestation. The Guru came from God and he will return to God, his Source. But God is Infinite and Eternal. Never will He cease to exist. God is the All, Guru is the temporary embodiment.
"Guru, I have the utmost devotion to you. Although he is saying that you are more important than God and I am saying that God is more important, I do have the utmost faith in you. Would you please illumine us in this matter?"
The Guru said, "Look here. If you think that the Guru is the body, then the Guru is not at all important. If you think that Guru is the soul, then Guru and God are equally important, equally one. But if you feel that the Guru is the Infinite Self, the Transcendental Self, then you have to feel that it is neither the body of the Guru nor the soul of the Guru, but the Supreme in him who is the Transcendental Self. The Supreme is the Guru, everybody's Guru. Now if you want to separate the physical, the soul and the Transcendental Self, if you want to separate them into three different parts, then you will never realise God, you can never realise the Highest Truth. In order to realise the Highest Truth, you should serve the physical aspect of the Master, love the soul of the Master, and adore the Transcendental Self of the Master. The most important thing is to see in the physical the boundless light of the Master, in the soul, the consciousness of inseparable oneness, and in the Self, the Eternal Liberation. Then only the Master and God can become one. Then God's physical body for the disciple is God's manifestation in the Guru, and the inner body of the Master is God's Realisation.
"God the Guru, and God the aspiring disciple can go together, and both are equally important in the Divine Drama. Similarly, Guru and disciple are equally important in this Eternal Game."
Editor's foreword to the first editionThe stories in this volume were originally told to his students and disciples by the great Indian spiritual Master, Sri Chinmoy Kumar Ghose. Although composed in the twentieth century and addressed to a Western audience, their significance is timeless and universal. Beneath the seeming simplicity of these candid and charming tales lies the profoundest insight into man's inner nature, his eternal relationship with his spiritual Master, and the conflicts which impede the realisation of his aspiration.
As in his more formal philosophical writing, the Master here presents the highest truth in the most direct and compelling form, not only engaging and fulfilling the mind, but also awakening the heart's inner joy.
The relevance of the Guru's message of Love, Devotion, and Surrender for the turbulent society of today is strikingly demonstrated by the rapid growth of Sri Chinmoy Centres throughout the world. In the United States and Canada, Europe and the Far East, spiritual seekers of all ages and backgrounds have been drawn by the radiant light of his unparalleled Realisation to become the Master's steadfast devotees and disciples. The peace and joy which have transformed their lives can now be discovered and shared by the readers of this volume of Sri Chinmoy's inspired and inspiring stories.