Spirituality is not cleverness1Dear ones, once a week we have our compulsory meditation. On that day, can you not meditate for half an hour or an hour more? Sometimes I come to the meeting late. Some of you feel, "Since Guru is coming late, we can also come late." Spirituality is not cleverness. Spirituality is soulfulness. Cleverness and soulfulness are not the same thing; they can never be the same thing.
I was brought up in a spiritual community. I was also a disciple. Even now, I am a disciple of my Absolute Lord Beloved Supreme. It happened that the Mother of our spiritual community would give a time when she would appear. Sometimes she would come late — one hour, two hours, three hours or even four hours after the time she had given. Still, people waited and waited. Of course, there were a few unfortunate disciples who would go away; but the majority waited and waited.
A few years ago, I heard a story about a young spiritual Master who was supposed to visit a particular state. Alas, the plane was delayed. For eight hours, while waiting for him to arrive, his disciples chanted and chanted most soulfully and devotedly. I was so moved when I heard this story.
Many times I have seen that at our Aspiration-Ground weekend functions during the day, there may be only twenty or thirty disciples, but when it is time for prasad, the number becomes seventy or eighty. Where do they come from? They fly in like birds from here, there and everywhere! I fully understand that some are working at Divine Enterprises and other places. If those people arrive at the last moment, I will not mind. But there may be many who are not working or doing something very, very important. Perhaps they are only enjoying lethargy.
Being near your Master is infinitely more valuable than any other kind of activity. Satsang is a Sanskrit word. Other spiritual Masters have given tremendous importance to satsang. It means to be in the company of a spiritual Master or a holy man. With my students I have acted like a grandfather, not like a father. It is all my fault! A father is strict with his children, but a grandfather can never be strict. Again, something unusual has happened: some of my spiritual grandchildren are more devoted and more self-giving than their parents.
Some individuals are working very hard for manifestation, specially with regard to my weightlifting activities. For that you will definitely get my inner gratitude. But some of you feel that because you work very hard for manifestation, you can do anything you want to do in other aspects of your life. If you do not believe in self-discipline, then I cannot be of outer help to you. Inwardly I will offer you gratitude, but I cannot take you as really special disciples just because you are working very hard. You are working towards manifestation and for that I am very, very grateful. There are many, many disciples who do not care for manifestation. But if you are wanting in discipline in your own spiritual life, then please, please, do not expect my tremendous outer attention, gratitude and pride.
Those of you who come here from other states and countries also, please take spirituality as soulfulness, not as cleverness. Do not think that if I can come late, you can also come late. If you come earlier, who will get the advantage? Who will get more benefit from the spiritual life? It is you and nobody else.
There is something else to consider. For you it takes five minutes or ten minutes or fifteen minutes to enter into your highest consciousness, but at a moment's notice I can enter into my highest. I doubt that anybody among my disciples has the capacity to enter into their highest consciousness in the twinkling of an eye. Such being the case, if you come here ten minutes, fifteen minutes, twenty minutes or half an hour early, it is only to your advantage. If you can meditate soulfully for an hour or two, will you not get more benefit from your spiritual life than if you meditate for only five minutes? Yes, there is a theory that it is better to meditate for five minutes with utmost soulfulness than to sit for an hour and think only of unspiritual things, but this is a totally different matter.
True, I have made it compulsory to attend our collective meditation once a week, but in many ways I doubt that any other spiritual Master is so indulgent with his disciples. Of course, in the West everybody is indulgent! But in India and other places, there are many, many strict spiritual Masters and their disciples also have become very, very strict with their own lives. Coming back to my point, once a week if you come here half an hour or an hour before the meeting starts, you will get tremendous benefit from your inner cry.
There are many more things I would like to say, but the main thing is this: take spirituality as sincerely as possible. Nobody has forced you, nobody has begged you; nobody can force you, nobody can beg you to be on the path. It was your decision, it is your decision and you can continue with your own decision. Kindly be strict with yourself. Do not look around. If you are strict, then it is worthwhile to be in my boat. If you are not strict, then you are wasting your most precious time. You can do something else outside my boat. Perhaps that will give you joy.
The more you can develop love of God, love of your own self, love of your own divinity, the faster you will run towards your Destination. You made the choice. Now be worthy of your choice, if you wish to continue.
WSI 34. 8 May 2003, New York↩