Total surrender is not self-realisation; total surrender is the most important thing for self-discovery. When we surrender, we have to feel that we have become totally one with the Highest and that we don’t have any separative feeling of consciousness. Total surrender is the ultimate rung of a ladder which [has] three steps: love, devotion and surrender. It is not enough just to touch the ultimate rung; we have to be well established in our surrender.
Total surrender does not come in the twinkling of an eye or overnight. It takes long years of patience. When surrender finally comes and starts playing its role, we have to know whether it is conditional or unconditional surrender. Conditional surrender means that if I give you something, then I can ask you for a favour, and you will give me the favour. This kind of surrender can be for only five minutes; the rest of the day we may be revolting against our highest nature. That is not total surrender. If, during meditation, we have surrendered to God for five or ten minutes very sincerely and devotedly, we have received inner Joy, Peace and Bliss. But if we are not surrendered for the rest of the day, it is still not total surrender. When total surrender takes place, total transformation of our nature takes place. When total surrender is complete, it is complete forever. And this total surrender of oneness is not to any king or tyrant, but to God, for eternity.
When we have totally surrendered to our highest being, to our Inner Pilot, permanently and consciously, then at that moment realisation has come and is permanent. Otherwise, there are many who only momentarily listen to their Master. If the Master says to do something, they may do it. Many surrender to the Master for five minutes, but then their surrender is totally withdrawn. They may surrender twenty times, but we have to see that total surrender is permanent and constant.
A young aspirant said to Swami Vivekananda, “I want to be your disciple.” Vivekananda said, “If you want to be my disciple, then you have to jump from the roof.” The man was about to jump but Vivekananda pulled him back. This person was ready to fulfil his Master’s request cheerfully and consciously, even to see God sooner than he had expected. But how can we expect this kind of total surrender from a beginner who sees the Master for the first time? This surrendering attitude comes from inside. When we fully realise God, we have to surrender to God, to the Master, to Infinity. Then our will becomes one with the Highest. At that time our spiritual Master can have no will of his own. If he is a true Master, he has to fulfil God by serving the Supreme in us at every moment.
Everybody has to feel that he can be a divine realised soul. He must feel that his permanent and total surrender, his constant and eternal surrender, results in his realisation.