Part III — Receptivity and the Master's Height

"Some students find it difficult to learn from the teacher"

Some students find it difficult to learn from the teacher. The teacher's way of teaching is too much for them. But if there is a good student in a class, a student who is a little higher or a little better than the other students, then for him it is easier to learn. To be very frank with you, sometimes I may ask a good student to go and convince someone who is not so good. I will not be able to convince the other person even if I take four hours. But if a good disciple speaks to the same person, then in five minutes' time he will be able to change the person. The good disciple is, say, ten inches higher than the other person, whereas I am ten feet higher. When the disciple talks, the other person sees that the disciple is a little higher than he is, and he listens to him. But my height is so much higher that either he will doubt me or he will be frustrated. First he will doubt me. He will say, "How is it possible that someone can have that much height? It is impossible." But when he sees that he is just a little below someone's height, then he will follow the good example of that person. The disciple is an intermediary, let us say, because his height is in-between.

It has happened many times that I fail, because my force is like an atom bomb to the disciples. But if I can give them only a limited amount of power, then they receive it. I always say, "Take according to your capacity. I am like the ocean. If you want to take a small quantity or if you want to take a large quantity, then just take it." But what happens is this: the moment they see that the quantity is so vast, they forget that they are allowed to take as much or as little as they want to. When they see the vastness, they are frightened to death. They feel that they came to drink just a few drops, but they have found the ocean and its vastness frightens them. Sometimes what do I do? I will show them a swimming pool or a pond. It is true that I have everything, but I if I show them a pond or a river, then they are most receptive.

This has happened many, many times. Let me tell you a true story. I was in a shop in the Virgin Islands, buying a gift, when the owner of the shop came up to me and said, "Do you know the term satsang?' It is an Indian word, so I said, "Of course, I know," and I told him the meaning. Then he said, "Do you know of anybody who can initiate me? I am planning to go to India."

So there in the shop, he was asking me the name of a Master who could initiate him. There in the shop his receptivity was so limited. So I tried to tell the poor fellow that he did not have to go to India. I told him that there are other Masters here. But I didn't want to tell him that I am also a spiritual Master.

Then I said, "Are you really interested in the spiritual life?" He said, "I am desperately looking for a spiritual Master." So I told him, "Please come to San Juan, Puerto Rico. There you can attend a meditation." Then he was interested in knowing who was going to hold the meditation. How was I going to tell him? Finally, I told him that it was I. Then he looked at me with such curiosity. He said he wanted to read some of my books and he gave me his address. Then he said, "All right, I will try to come to Puerto Rico." But I knew that he would not come.

His soul was crying, but his mind would not accept. At that time if I had been wearing Indian dress, he would have come up to me and touched my feet. Then I would have told him that I can also initiate, and he would have followed me here to Puerto Rico. That is why my sister, Lily, sent me Indian garments when I came here. I said I didn't want them because I did not like to wear them. But she said, "Who cares for a policeman if he does not have a uniform? And a doctor should always have proper dress; otherwise, nobody will go to him. Once you become well-known, at that time you won't have to wear Indian dress. But until then you will definitely have to." I tell you, if I had been wearing Indian garments, at that time the man would have become my disciple.

But if some disciples had been there with me, they could have given a talk about me, and then naturally this man would have believed. Disciples can convince the new seekers. I bring the light, but that light sometimes frightens them. But if the disciples give them light, they can accept it. So that is why I beg the disciples who have been with us to mix with the newcomers. I am the elder brother, the disciples are the younger brothers, and the seekers are the youngest brothers.

God has so many children. Here I am the oldest and there will be some who are younger than you and some who are older than you. So you should take care of those people who are younger than you. Then, when they are older, I will take them.

It has happened that while a spiritual Master is talking to his disciples, visitors join in the meditation. The Master is sitting on the throne. The new seekers, according to their capacity and receptivity, sometimes receive much more than the disciples of the Master. Each time the Master talks, they look not at the Master, but they look at the disciples to see if they approve of what the Master is saying. They feel that they will not be able to judge, for they have just come. So if the disciples are nodding their heads, then immediately the newcomers will feel that the Master is telling the truth. But if the disciples are not serious, then the seekers may start thinking that perhaps the Master is not saying the right thing. So the Master is always judged by those who have already accepted him.