Student, Disciple or Devotee?
Maharaji, Shri Sant Yogashram, New Delhi
(Evening Session) 13th April, 1991.
Maharaji gave the following satsang in front of about 50,000 Indian devotees, and about 2,000 western 'students'. Maharaji gave his address in Hindi, and was simultaneously translated in a dozen of different languages, including English, Spanish, Italian, French, and German.
Now, we have heard a lot. Mahatmas (instructors) have put forward a great deal of things. And today Padarthanand has also spoken. When I heard him, I began to think. I thought, if a man makes a boat of clay and its rudder of paper and then sets out into the ocean, how far would he go? How far would he go before his boat sinks? When the clay would start dissolving, the rudder of paper would also get saturated in water, then how far would that boat be able to sail?
There is a similar instance, a natural law that if a bucket is full of water to the brim, it cannot hold additional water. If you want to pour more water into the same bucket, you will have to empty it. In English it is said that two things cannot occupy the same place at the same time. Either there will be one or the other. But both of them cannot be there at the same place at a particular time.
So, you have just heard the questions put by the people, "What should we become? Should we become students, disciples or devotees?" When satsang was over, Padarthanand came back-stage, I asked him to come to me. I said "Why don't you explain to people the difference in becoming a student, a devotee and a disciple?" Just ask them. Enough of questions have already been asked. And I think in most of the cases some instructors might have given wild answers, quite off the mark as if fetched from far off places, which made neither head nor tail, which carried no meaning and might have confounded the audience: "Oh, what mahatmaji (the instructor) has said, I could not comprehend at all. But maybe it is true because it has been said by mahatamaji." So it is just like that. Because I have seen enough of this world.
There is that story about a farmer, you know? There was a farmer. On one occasion his wife told him that she wanted to go to Delhi. The farmer said to her, "Yes, of course, you may go to Delhi but I cannot accompany you because it is the crop-season. But do one thing please. You are going to Delhi, so bring some laddoos (balls of sweet) of Delhi with you." So, she went to Delhi, she bought a saree, saw Delhi, but forgot to bring those laddoos. She came back by train. When she was returning back home, she noticed some camel dung-balls lying on the road. Then she remembered about laddoos and became very nonplussed, "Oh, I have totally forgotten to bring those laddoos!" So what she did was that she picked up some of those dung-balls, put them in a bag and reached home. On reaching home, she coated them with sugar and put them safely. When the farmer came home, he enquiered about her visit to Delhi: "How was Delhi?" She said, "Oh, very nice." He asked-"Did you bring my laddoos?" "Yes, I have brought them." "Where have you put them?" She replied, "There they are."
So he went there, took them out and started eating. The wife asks, "How is the taste? Do you like them?" "Though their taste is like dung, but I am eating them because they are from Delhi."
And this story is most befitting to the public. It is the natural tendency of people to accept whatever is told. "Did you understand the context?" "No. But I am listening because it is coming from mahatmaji." Brother, if you do not understand, then try to find out the real meaning.
What has a student to become? A student has to become a receptacle. What has a devotee to become? A devotee also has to become a receptacle. And what has a disciple to become? A disciple too has to become a receptacle. Whatever you name him, he is meant to be a vessel; meant to be empty. A disciple should also be empty before his master. His bag should never be full. In case he becomes a victim of ego- "Oh yeah, I am a disciple!" Then what sort of a devotee is he? If he is possessed with an ego- "I am a devotee," what kind of a devotee will he be called? In his devotion too, if he does not go to his Lord quite empty, how can he be acknowledged a true disciple? And if a student does not go to his teacher as an empty vessel, how can he be regarded as a student? But we in our minds think...because we are intellectuals. We want to grasp everything with our intellect, by our thoughts, by our ideas. But there are certain things, which cannot be comprehended by mind or intellect.
What is devotion? What is 'studentship'? Because a student goes to school. He studies. He has faith in him that whatever is being taught to him is for his good, for his benefit. But he does not know this. He does not know...if there is a good teacher, he would teach the student secretly, and explain all the questions likely to be asked in the forthcoming examination; and the student would not be aware of this fact. But if he has no faith...Now, just tell me what is faith? Is faith really the subject of intellect? In what sort of things do we put our faith? Do you think that a devotee of God, a good devotee does not need faith?
I mean, people are apt to catch words -only. Nobody is ready to comprehend the meaning behind them.
It is just like that story. There was a man. He had a cat. He went to a Buddhist temple, brought a rosary from there and tied it around the neck of the cat. When all the rats there saw the rosary around the cat's neck and became very pleased. The rats started talking among themselves- "Oh, now this cat has become a Buddhist. This cat has now become a devotee of lord Buddha. Now, she will not eat meat. Now she has turned vegetarian!" The rats were extremely pleased. They came out of their holes and started playing freely. There was that rosary hanging around the neck of the cat. Does it mean that there had come a change in her nature? The cat kept on looking furtively, and as soon as a whole bunch of rats assembled at one place...because they thought, "Now this cat doesn't eat meat. So we will do whatever we want to do." But as soon as the cat saw the opportunity, it jumped upon them. And the poor rats were in big trouble.
They all scampered away into their holes. Then one rat says: "Oh, though this cat has become a Buddhist, and does not eat meat but she has turned very dangerous after becoming a Buddhist." I mean, that rat could not realize in its little mind that she was still a cat. Did it make any difference if somebody tied something around her neck? Nothing at all.
We have to realize this fact that why have we come here? What was that thing that drew us here? What did we hear? What did our heart say when we came to know about Knowledge? What is that which brought us here? Speakers usually say- "Oh brother, you don't know about your life. You know, you may die tomorrow." And instructors would say, "Maybe, you will die tomorrow. And if you don't receive Knowledge, you shall have to undergo the cycle of birth and death continuously for millions of time." And if people hear this, even the most courageous ones will be frightened to death: "Oh, my goodness, mahatmaji, please give me Knowledge just now." Why just now? Why the Knowledge should be given? So that it may save him from roaming in the vicious circle of the eighty four hundred thousand births and deaths.
Have you seen worms? Have you seen ants? I can understand what it means to be born as an ant or worm in your next birth. That's why it has been said:"It is with great good fortune we secure this human body.
It is rarely attained even by gods, as scriptures say.
It is actually the means to practice Knowledge and the gateway to salvation..."
I admit all these things. But you just tell me one thing. Do ants go to their jobs? No. Do they get stuck in traffic jams? No. Do they pay taxes? No. Do they need to vote? No. Do they face all these worldly problems? No. Do they get two square meals a day? Yes. Do they have a place to live? Yes. So you just tell me one thing. There are those people too who sleep on the pavements and pass their time in trouble and tribulations. Now, whose situation is better? The situation of ants or the situation of those people on the pavements? You tell me, those poor people who have no place to live, no food to eat, how do they fare in this world? Have you ever seen ants begging alms? Oh, everything is provided to ants. Have you ever seen ants saying- "Yes sir. Yes sir!" No. Have you seen ants doing flattery without purpose? Have you seen ants saying, "Please forgive me, oh forgive me?" So, you just tell me, on one side there is this human being and on the other is that ant. And for ants there are no restrictions. They are going on without any restraint. Then whose lot is better?
Hey, there is a mulberry tree here and sweet mulberry fruits fall on the ground. A man needs a ladder. Isn't it so? Either he needs a ladder or a stick, so that he may hit the mulberry tree to make the fruits fall down. But since I came here, I have seen small pieces of fruits-not the bigger ones automatically falling down for all those ants.
There is an instance to this effect that once Parvatee brought food for Lord Shiva, but he did not take it. She asked him why he was not eating. He replied that he eats after feeding each and every being. Parvatee said, "Is it so? You eat after feeding every living being?" He said, "Of course, I do." "O.K.," said Parvatee and she picked up an ant and put it in a small casket and closed the lid. The next day she went and again brought food. Shivji started eating. Then Parvatee says: "Lord, yesterday you told me that you eat after feeding every one but today there is one living thing, and I know that it has not eaten but you are eating as usual." Then Lord Shiva said to Parvatee "Go, open up and see." As soon as Parvatee opened the box, she saw the ant eating a grain of rice, which had fallen in the box from the Tilak on her forehead when she was closing the box at the time of putting the ant into that box.
So, really just tell me what is that thing? What is that Sadhana (practice)? What is that thing which makes a human being better than an ant? Listen, in this world so many people do not possess air-conditioning facility. You know white ants? Their houses are fully air-conditioned. Just think of it. I have seen a documentary. The temperature in the dwelling place of white ants remains almost normal. It only fluctuates 3 degrees up or down. It is always the same. It is constant irrespective of heat or cold outside. Haven't the white ants also got that potentiality? What is that thing? People are proud of their muscular and physical strength. An ant can lift weights many times heavier than its own body weight. A human being can't do that. People say, "Well, we have solved such a big scientific problem. If you want to have communication from here to U.S.A., you can do that." In the ocean, there are whales who can communicate around the world without any telephone. What is missing? A man requires an airplane to fly high up to 35 thousand feet with a constant air pressure according to his bodily needs. Again he requires air-conditioning or heater in it. He requires a heater because air gets too cold at that altitude. And if these means or resources are not available then he requires a mask for Oxygen. For that he has to undergo big trainings. There are huge aircrafts. Thousands and thousands of persons are engaged in manufacturing those aircrafts. Big research work is going on. Oh, there happens to be a bird, called 'goose'. It flies majestically at the height of 35 thousand feet. Up there in the sky that bird does not need an Oxygen mask, nor any training or an airplane. It is flying at that height of 35 thousand feet comfortably. So you tell me what has been left there?
The creator has left nothing incomplete for animals or birds or for men. One thing he has left to human being and that is that you can know. But where has human being utilized this privilege or potentiality of knowing things? What have human beings learned? Just see, in all spheres of life whatever man has done has caused his downfall. Wars. I am flabbergasted. Oh, there is a war at this time! I think most probably two months ago everything was going fine. Everything splendid. The Berlin wall there was also demolished. And it went on this way only for two or three months at the most. After that a dead stop. Could all these intellectuals, learned ones and other people manage everything smoothly without war-fare only for three months? What is this?
Now, let us talk something about our inner self. Not anything outside. Do you know how to go inside? Do you know what the path of devotion is! Because the modern devotees happen to be half gods and half devotees. When it is convenient, they become gods, and when they feel like it, they become devotees. That depends which role is more lucrative.
When they find that something is being distributed to devotees, they assume the role of a devotee; and when they see that something is being offered to gods, they put on the mantle of gods. They act according to their convenience. What is the meaning of becoming a devotee? What is the meaning of becoming a student? What is the meaning of becoming empty? That is most important to realize.
My Master has revealed this Knowledge to me. Such a beautiful Knowledge. And how did he give it? We were playing outside. These days lots of aspirants are waiting there. But there was no question of aspiration. We were busy playing outside. Somebody came and said, "He (Shri Maharaji) is calling you." In my family there was a sort of a regulation that when he called, it means something serious. In those days, during the time of Shri Maharaji, there was a pet dog named Tommy. We were very young. And that dog used to bite everybody. He was always chained. He used to run after every one to bite them. But when Shri Maharaji came back from tours and was sitting in a chair, that dog used to sit there quietly. He (the dog) knew quite well that if he would be nasty, he would be punished. Anyway, the message came, "He is calling. He is calling in the parlour." Now, 'calling in the parlour' indicated something else. If he called us into the dining room, that had other significance. If he called us to the verandah, that had different implications. If he called us into the bedroom, it meant something else. But 'calling in the parlour' was a signal of very serious significance. His different calls differed in degrees in terms of the purpose and seriousness of the situation. So he called us, "Sit down. Do you want Knowledge?" He asked. "Yes sir," was the answer. "Take it. This is technique one, this is the next technique and this is another one..." He gave the techniques and then said, "Now go away. That is all. Did you understand?" That's all. But somewhere we needed to be empty. Had there been no emptiness inside, it would have been almost impossible to understand anything. "Go and do practice." No tall talks. Within minutes he explained everything and then said, "Well, go and play." And what did we give him? I did not have even a fruit. I had nothing in the name of offering to him. First he asked, "Do you know how to do meditation?" I replied, "Yes." Then he said, "Take this and this..."
But how can I describe how much grace has Maharaji showered on my life! And I know it fully well that so long as I stay a vessel of his grace, the grace would accompany me, till then. And if I cease to be the vessel, the grace would abandon me.
Now this ego. Though it appears to be of little consequence, but even if a devotee is conscious of the fact -"l know," it is akin to the devotee's crucifixion. If you are plagued with a little bit of arrogance that 'you know', you are gone. You are finished. You know nothing. Period. Again you have to turn to the Master and pray to him to give you prudence- "Maharaji, please give me wisdom. I even don't know that as a human being I should not be egoistic. This is the problem. As a human being, I don't know how to conduct myself as a devotee. This too please teach me. Please let me know."
On every turn of my life, some new thing occurs, for which I am not ready. People come to me with their problems. "Oh, this is happening, now that is happening."
Let me tell you something which occurred once to me. I was at an airport where I had gone for training. The training was completed. I had a small airplane and I had to fly to Miami in this airplane, which had come back from Amsterdam a night before. There was something wrong with the plane. Its one engine was not starting. And this happened in Dallas. The weather was terribly hot. I had made all the plans in detail and was determined to go - "How I would leave from the airport. I would leave in a car. And this man with me would return the car. Then I would sit in that airplane and start it. I would reach Miami. There I would land. And people would take back that airplane." The whole plan was duly chalked out by me: at what time I would leave and at what time I would reach there. And then I would take a meal and go to sleep. All that was meticulously planned by me.
Anyway, I reached the airport. Till then I did not know at all whether the engine had some fault. So I was quite complacent. I went to start the engine but it wouldn't budge. How is it! The engine is not starting. And I was sitting in the cockpit all the time trying very hard to start it, sweating profusely all the while. The shirt got completely drenched with sweat. The sweat is dripping down, coming into the eyes; there is a burning sensation in the eyes. I was desperate. Just let it start and no sooner it starts, I will take off and when I begin to cruise at a higher altitude, it would be cool. Then it would be O.K. But the engine just stuck there, it did not start.
Then I left the airplane in a hurry and asked that person who was accompanying me to go and buy at least two tickets. I told him to find any flight. All the seats in the plane were full. But somehow he got two tickets as two passengers did not turn up. That's why only two tickets were available. So we flew.
I was reflecting upon the whole chain of incidents. I was reproaching the crew who brought that plane, "Oh these rascals, they brought this airplane. They had flown it yesterday. They were fully aware that the engine was defective, had they even let me know before, the problem would have been rectified the previous night. They are great scoundrels." And I was sitting in that airplane. Well, it flew towards Miami. Then I thought, what was the reality? On one side I could blame everybody, and at that time I was thinking that somebody would pay for it. Then again I remembered that I had my own plan, and that Supreme Planner had his plan too for me. There were thus two plans. There was one plan of mine and another plan of my Master. So I recollected that how could my plan succeed in face of the plan of my Maharaji? Whatever plans I had made, they were bound to crumble. But what a great fortune it was that in the plan of Maharaji also, I had to go to Miami. He did all that. And I did not know even from what calamity he saved me. It was also possible that there might have been more problems in that airplane, which I did not know. But I am ready to accept whatever Maharaji has in store for me. That I don't know. A devotee doesn't know.
In reality, a true devotee does not know how to practice devotion, and how he should do it. "How I should practice devotion," this aspect also he should learn from the Master. People say- "Oh, it is already written. Somebody has written it." But that was not written automatically. It depends upon the time and situation.
We need a living Master, a living king and a living physician in every age and time. Whenever the Master came, people could not understand him. Do you know why they could not understand him? Everything is written in the book of history. Why did people not understand him? Should I tell you? Because, it was written that would happen in a certain way. And those stupid people read this and interpreted it in their own way. They did not follow the experience, but rather the writings. And thus they lost the whole opportunity, because it was written. And what was written was something else and people interpreted it in their own way. It is like what was mentioned earlier, that when they want to become a devotee, they become one and when they want to become God, they become God. You know in this world, there are such people who take themselves to be greater than Vedvyasa (A saint who wrote Indian Scriptures). They translate things according to their own whims. Tulsidas wrote Ramayana. People translated it. So many big scholars are engaged in doing their own translations. First of all they recite verses from Ramayana and then they translate them, interpret them.
Let me ask them, "Since when have you become Tulsidas? Who did confer the degree of Tulsidas upon you?" I would like to tell a story. There were three (so called) learned persons sitting in a boat. The boat was hit by a storm and water began to get inside. The boat was getting filled with water. One of the learned ones thought, "Now let us throw this water out of the boat." Then all the three learned men said, "First let us have a deliberation as to how to get the water out of the boat." One of them who considered himself more learned said, "Fill your palms with water and throw it out." Thereupon the remaining two said, "Oh, it will be very strenuous." Then the second one who considered himself to be a little more learned said, "What is the big necessity to do all that? Let us bisect the boat and the water would automatically run out." Thereafter all the three again had further discussion and came to the conclusion, "No, no. This is also a very strenuous job. Let us explore another method which may not require any labor." The third man who too considered himself to be the most learned said, "I know better. Make a hole in the center of the boat and the water would automatically get out." Then all the three exclaimed, "It is really true, Maharaj!" So, they picked up a knife and made a hole in the boat. And what happened? The boat sank. Hey, had it been out of water, the aforesaid method would have worked. But the boat was in the water. And while it was in water, they were making a hole in the boat. Because, what do people want? An easy method. I was talking to an instructor and he says, "Please tell me an easy method, an effortless course."
I shall tell you another story. There was a stupid man -- an idiot. He had two bundles with him and a donkey. He loaded both the bundles on the donkey and also sat on its back. The bundles were very heavy. He was trying to make the donkey move, but the donkey did not budge. Then that idiot thought that as the bundles were too heavy, because there were two of them, that's why the donkey was not moving. So that stupid man untied one bundle and put it on his shoulder. Even then he was sitting on the back of the donkey and kicking it to move ahead, but with no results: "Oh, why don't you move?" He was wondering what had happened to the donkey. But you know, the load on its back was still the same. Though he might put one bundle on his shoulder or both of them, but so long as he was sitting on the donkey, the weight was not going to be reduced. And we are also in the same situation. We also conclude that once we receive Knowledge, we know everything. This is how we behave usually.
There was a man. I he wanted to become a doctor. He used to accompany a doctor wherever he went. He used to carry his medicine bag. One day two persons came to that doctor and said: "O' Vaidyaji (the doctor), our camel is dying. Please save him." So the Vaidya went with them and that man who was the doctor's assistant, (called 'Compounder' in India), accompanied the doctor with the medicine bag. The doctor examined the camel and asked them to bring him two stones. When he got the stones, he put one stone under the neck of the camel and hit hard above the neck of the camel with the other stone. The camel got up. The assistant saw this feat and exclaimed, "Well, that's done." "What has been done?" "Oh, I have become a doctor. Now I don't want to continue as an assistant. I am going straight to the market, will buy a medicine kit and prefix the word 'Doctor' to my name. And thus I will become a full-fledged doctor." The doctor said, "What have you learned so far?" He replied, "Whatever you may think of me, but I have learned perfectly what is required to become a doctor. That camel was dying and you saved it. So I have learned from you the skill to save any dying being." The doctor said, "You idiot, look here. In an attempt to swallow a big fruit, the camel had got it stuck in his throat. That is why the camel was dying. So I took two stones and broke the fruit, which the camel swallowed and then became all right, but what did you learn?" The man said, "No, no, you are trying to misguide me. Actually you don't want that I should become a doctor."
The doctor implored him not to act so rashly. But the man was adamant and said, "No Sir, I have learned the art of medical treatment." He purchased his medicine bag and put his insignia on it and moved to the next village. And there were four sturdy fellows going somewhere. They were actually brothers. When they saw the 'doctor', they asked him whether he was a doctor. On his affirmation, they said, "Oh Doctor Saheb, our mother is very ill, she is going to die." "Well, it is O.K." said the fake doctor, "No problem. It is still better, as I have learned the skill to save a dying patient." They took him to their home where the old lady was lying and in her rickety body the throat was somewhat protruded. He said, "Don't worry. Bring two stones." Because he knew its 'treatment.' They brought two stones. And the charlatan put one stone underneath her neck and with the other hit hard on her throat. The old lady quivered a bit and then became quiet forever. He says, "Now, I have cured her. She will suffer no more. Now she is alright." When the sons saw that the man instead of curing their mother had killed her, they belabored him mercilessly.
That is what happens with people. They would pretend, "Why yes, I know it well how to do this. And how that is done. No, no. I have also learned it." The question is from where did you learn? From where should I get those words which may enable me to sing the glory of my Master. For this also I have to pray to my Master, 'Please give me those words too, in order that I may pray to you. Give me that inspiration, give me that wisdom and refined intellect. You just explain to me how I may get rid of my ego." Because, man is likely to forget being lost in the infatuation of this world. And what does he forget? That how the Master saves us. As has been said:"I was being carried away in the tide of the Society and Scriptures.
But the Satguru rescued me and gave me thee lamp of Knowledge.
And through that lamp he showed me the true object.
On my own, I could not have reached my true destination,
even after millions of births.
But my Maharaji escorted me there within the twinkling of an eye."
How did he give me that lamp in my hand? How was I being carried away in that tide? I was just drifting along without actually knowing that I was being swept away. If a man is drowning and he knows that he is drowning, he can at least shout for help. But the worst situation is that when the man does not know this fact that he is drowning. In that case he won't be able even to shout for help. He will not even make efforts to save himself. But someone comes to his rescue. Why does he come? I cannot understand. I cannot comprehend why the Master comes in this world. He is not under any obligation to come. He need not come.
So far I have not met anybody who is worthy of this Knowledge and worthy of the company of the Master. Nonetheless, from time to time, somebody comes and due to his compassion and mercy he draws out the man from the river, from that current in which they are being swept away. People ask, "Why does it so happen?" Really, I don't know. I know only this much that he is compassionate. This much I definitely know that he showers his mercy. Why? Not because it is written in books or in any treatise. But because, I have personally experienced it. This is how I know. I am not talking something written, rather I am talking from my own experience. Because he came and saved me. After saving me, in his mercy he further cautioned me not to go very close to that river, lest my feet might slip down. He gave me the requisite warning which I mostly needed.
Because human beings are apt to fall in that swift current despite their being warned against it. They go near that river, their feet slip and they fall down in it. And then they remember and pray, "Maharaji, save me." Then they are ready to accept everything: "Oh, Maharaji, I am stupid, I am foolish. Please save me by any means." And again he saves. Why? Because if we try to examine this fact by our intellect, he need not save us. He has already given the warning. If anybody hits his finger deliberately with a knife, the knife is bound to cut it, because it is quite natural. And yet, the Master again comes and again he saves. But as soon as we are saved, we forget all what had happened to us. Again we do the same thing. Again the Master warns, "Look, save yourself. Refrain from ego. Enjoy this Knowledge. Experience personally. Don't go near the river." But again man forgets. Again they subject themselves to their ego: "I did this, I did this. I have done that and 'that's why' I did that." All this they do to gain fame and self-aggrandizement.
Oh, this world is so stupidly infatuated for their name and fame, that is beyond description. People seem to be ready to do everything for their neighbor except anything good. If the neighbor has one car, they must have two cars. If their neighbor has two cars, then they require three and if the neighbor has three, they have to have four.
There was a man. In his neighborhood, on one side lived a goldsmith and on the other lived a blacksmith. And both the neighbors constantly used to run their workshop the whole day and cause a lot of din and clatter which was obnoxious and hurting to the man. One day, he approached the blacksmith and requested him to move away to some other place. And then he went to the goldsmith and made the same request to him also. After sometime both of them came to that man and informed him, "We are leaving now. We have taken new houses." The man felt relieved and became exultant. He threw a great party in which he invited both his neighbors and both of them participated. Then the man enquired from the blacksmith, "Where have you taken your new house?" He said, "Well, I have taken the house of the goldsmith." And the goldsmith when asked told him, "Oh, now I have shifted to the blacksmith's house." Thus his problem was still the same. He got no redress. Both of them only changed houses but the problem of noise pollution still persisted. So, why all the feast giving and celebrating the occasion?
So it is a matter of understanding and looking at things in their proper perspective. Because it is the matter of heart. It relates to heart. If somebody wants to lift an elephant by a spoon, is it possible? He cannot do so. Do you understand? A thing which is concerned with the intellect, can be comprehended by it. But if it is beyond intellect, the intellect is totally irrelevant. If you have to experience something, experience it with the heart and not by the intellect. So open up your heart. But that too we do not know, how it is done or what we have to do for it. In that case too we have to pray to the Master - "Oh Maharaji, please teach me the process to open up my heart." Not that "Well, I know." People often presume that they know it, but actually they don't know. "So, Maharaji, please let me know the technique to enable me to open this heart. How to understand this process." Only through his grace a man can derive the bliss of Knowledge, otherwise it is not possible.
Today when I was talking to aspirants, I told them, "Just forget other things." It is the same thing that I was talking yesterday. Because we have desires. That we should drink cold Coca-Cola, cold Pepsi Cola or cold Gold Spot etc. And we go to the vendor, the Master himself, and ask him, "Do you have ice-cream? Do you have Coca-Cola or Pepsi-Cola?" He says- "No, no. I don't have all this stuff." What else could he say when he does not have all those drinks and if he says 'yes', it would be a blatant lie. But if somebody goes to him and says, "Oh, I am very thirsty. Do you have the means to quench my thirst?" Then the Master will say, "Yes . This is the rope, that is the bucket and this is the well. I will just give you the water after drawing it from the well." So keep your bag empty - not full before him. When somebody spreads his empty bag, only then it would be filled up. Do you understand?
But how to get the bag emptied? After giving up all the arrogance, pray to him. And pray with your heart. Because the modern students do not want to learn. Rather they want to teach. Why? Because they like to argue and wrangle. Nobody wants to learn. But leaving aside all this, pray to the Master. Pray with your heart, not by your mouth. Pray with the heart: "Oh Maharaji, I don't know, please teach me. Please tell me. Give me proper guidance and power of discrimination and protect me. I don't know what to do. Please give me the capability to understand your warnings. If my attention is diverted somewhere else, O' my Lord, please call me back to you. Never abandon me. If I am swept away in the current and forget to call you for rescue, please don't forget me. Just come and save me. Because as I have the tendency to forget, I may forget you. I do not know what is good for me. But you know best."
If the heart is full of prayer, then a man will get the capacity to comprehend and make others understand things. Because only then the bucket will be empty and when the bucket is empty, the bestower will definitely fill it up. He will fill it with the Knowledge and with love - because it is a matter of love. Had it not been the matter of love, there would have been nothing to do - neither to teach, nor to understand anything. If somebody would have been drowning, he would not have been rescued.
Look, after all you are a living being in this world. You should think over it. You would say on that incident of drowning that it was his fate. But if the Master also starts saying, "Oh, that was his fate. I had already warned him not to go into the river, but he did. And as he did go there he was drowned. So what can I do?" But he doesn't say so.
Had there been no love, the giver of Knowledge would never have come. Had there been no love, he would not have given Knowledge to anybody.
Love is the cause of this creation. Love is the source of this human race and love is the origin of light and darkness. Love is the genesis of everything. If we do not imbibe love in our life, then what did we accomplish? What is left in the absence of love - the real love, the true love? So understand this fact clearly. Don't say, "It is written. That is written." Leave it. And experience - yourself.
If you go to your house, to your wife, and instead of cooking food she just tells you that she has "written your food."
What will you do? No. You need real food - in substantial form. Isn't it so? You must have food which you can eat, not just in written form. Just think. The experience too should be practical and living. And how beautiful it is that due to love, we are getting all this opportunity. Take advantage of it. Accept it and imbibe it. Open up your heart. Be a real student, a person who is totally dedicated. Though I know that you have not the capability to become one. So pray for this also that you may become a student. Be a devotee. But I know, you cannot become a devotee. For this too, you have to beg that you may become one. If you want to become a devotee, you can become one. But you do not know that you have to become a devotee. So far you have been a devotee of only one thing and that is maya (illusion). And if you are left alone just for one minute, you will again become a devotee of maya. Apparently you don't know how to practice real devotion. You only know how to practice devotion of maya. You can become a devotee of kali-yuga (dark-age), but if you want to be a true devotee, for that also you shall have to ask, how is that possible?
So think and consider. Open your heart, take advantage and enjoy this Knowledge, this time and opportunity. Just enjoy.
Thank you and good night.
In 'Life Force'
Volume 7, Issue 4 October-December, 1991
Printed and published by V.P. Sharma for the Divine United Organisation,
Shri Sant Yogashram, Shahurpur, Mehrauli, New-Delhi - 110 030
Editor - Shanker Lal Goel
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