Archive for April, 2009

nothing like it

April 5, 2009

blog8Leo Tolstoy has a story, a beautiful story, of three villagers — uneducated, uncultured. They lived by the side of a lake in total isolation, under a tree. They were becoming more and more famous as saints. The archbishop of the Russian Orthodox church of course was angry, because in Christianity you can be a saint only if you are certified. It is hilarious that a saint needs to be certified — as if it is also a title, an honorary degree that has to be conferred on the man. The very word `saint’ in English comes from `sanction’; it has to be sanctioned, certified. These three people were not certified and they had become saints. People were going to them in thousands and they were not coming to the archbishop. He was really pissed off! One day he could not contain himself. He took a boat and went across the lake. Those three poor people fell at his feet and they said, “Why did you have to make this long, tedious journey? You could have informed us and we would have come.” He was cooled down a little, seeing their simplicity. But he said, “Do you think you are saints?” They said, “We don’t know what a saint means.” He asked, “Why do people come to worship you?” They said, “That is a problem to us. We don’t want them to — that’s why we have come far away from the village to live here in isolation. But people are crazy; they go on coming here. And we go on saying that we don’t know anything; we are just simple people, poor people.” Now the archbishop was back into his daily posture of being the archbishop. He said, “Then listen; first tell me, what is your prayer?” All the three looked at each other and said, “You tell him.” The archbishop said, “Anybody can say, there is no question — just tell me what the prayer is.” They said, “We are very embarrassed because we don’t know any prayer. Not knowing any prayer we have created our own — please forgive us. Our prayer is: `God, you are three; we are also three — have mercy on us.’ That’s all — longer prayers we cannot remember. It is simple and meaningful to us: `You are three, we are three — have mercy on us.'” The archbishop had to laugh. He said, “This is a strange kind of prayer! I will tell you the prayer authorized by the church, and you forget this prayer. This is not prayer, this is all nonsense!” They said, “You can teach us; we are available. The only difficulty is, it should not be too long, there should not be big words; otherwise we will forget it.” He told them the whole prayer. They were very sad, and they said, “Please repeat it one time more — it is very difficult to remember. But we will try it in three parts: one part one man will remember; the other part the other man will remember; the third part the third man will remember. This way we will make it. You repeat it at least one time more.” The archbishop repeated the prayer one time more. They all three touched his feet, and he greatly enjoyed it. He was thinking that there was going to be an encounter, but these were poor people, ignorant. He went in his boat, very happy that he had done a virtuous act of transforming three idiots to the right way of religion. In the middle of the lake he was surprised; all three were coming, running on the water! He was so afraid — this time he REALLY pissed! He was trembling, “My God, what is happening.” They reached the boat and said to the archbishop, “Please, one time more! We have forgotten the prayer.” The archbishop said to them, “You forget my prayer; you continue your own. I was wrong to disturb you, please forgive me. Just go back to `You are three, we are three — have mercy on us.’ From today I am also going to do your prayer, because I am also three — I, my wife, my son. It fits and it is simple — and it works!” Religions should be a simple, human, individual affair, like love. You don’t have organizations for love; you don’t create churches and synagogues and temples and mosques for love. But in love at least two persons are involved — in prayer you are absolutely alone.

All will come by Grace if we have prepared ourselves

April 3, 2009

Wherever you go, you are the magnet, the center of attraction. You attract everything — all the angels, all the human beings, and all the species — towards you. In the 1950s, a cow called Lakshmi would part thousands of people gathered around Ramana Maharshi to go to the guru every day for a blessing. The guru would not eat until he had personally fed that cow. All animals, all creatures are attracted toward such Masters. There are many stories that the cat and the rat, the tiger and the deer, the snake and the mongoose would forget their enmity in the presence of such a saint and played together. Everything is attracted towards you, but you are not attracted towards them because you keep God as your central attraction. You look to God and they look to you. Then you are safe. If you are attracted by the things which are attracted to you, then very soon the power will be gone, for it is God which dwells in you which is the source of attraction for the whole humanity. Bless them, make them stand on their own two feet and give them the Light so that they may walk in the Light and not in darkness. But at the same time, tell them that these blessings come from God and not from you. If you take the credit, you’ll have a large following for a few years before that very following becomes the instrument of your downfall. History proves that. Be careful acknowledging that the blessings are from God. Somebody said, to Jesus, “How good you are!” Immediately he said, “Why do you call me good? There is only one who is good and that is my Father in heaven!” This form of humility should be there constantly. You may not have a large following and you should not be attracted towards that either. It comes to you when you don’t want it.