QUESTION: What is the relationship between the Sikh religion and our faith?
THE MASTER: What is your faith? I am teaching no faith.
Q: Well we do not have Sikhism, and we do not have—
M: The basic principles of all religions are the same. I am teaching you no "ism," mind that. Remain in your own faiths. But, there you have taken the first step—the elementary step. It is meant for the preparation of the ground. Now you have to take the other step which is referred to in your scriptures, but which we have forgotten. This is no new faith, no new religion—nor am I going to advocate any religion whatsoever. There are already so many faiths existing. Do you follow me? This gathering here is a purely spiritual gathering, a common ground for all to sit together, irrespective of whether they belong to one religion or the other. As a man we are one; as a soul we are one; and also the one whom we worship God—is also the same. There is no ism here, no ritual, no rites, no special form of prayers.
Q: This very question was answered by a man I asked it of. I said, "What is the relation between the Sikh religion and the Radha Soami faith?" And he said, "It is the same, with the addition of the Master." That's the way he answered this question.
M: No, no, no.
Q: So I'm glad to hear this said this way.
M: These are the facts. Sikhism also preaches the same thing. I think if all the other scriptures of the world were put together and the purely spiritual part were taken out, they wouldn't form even one-twentieth of the Sikh scriptures; it is a voluminous treasure. But they all referred to the Light and Sound Principle and to the need of a Guru or a Master. Even the Sikh scripture enjoins that. It says, nobody can see God except through the Master. It not only says that, but it says, nobody has ever been, nor is, nor ever will be able to know God without a Master. So, Sikhism does provide for a Master, and very emphatically so. But the general point is that when Masters leave, there are formations. So long as the practical Masters are there, they go on all right. But for want of practical Masters, formations become stagnations; then stagnation results in deterioration; and there are fights between religion and religion.
So this is the Truth. We forget it, and Masters come to revive that Truth, again and again. Don't you see that when Christ entered the synagogue, He said, "You have made the house of my Father a business home." Is it not so? And He drove them out. The teachings are the same. To err is human. For want of practical people, we dwindle down into error.
Sometimes the disciples say, "We are proud of the Masters to Whom we belong." The question arises whether the Masters to Whom we belong are proud of us. They can be proud of us only if we live up to what They say. They said you must be reborn. All Masters say the same thing. But we don't know what the meaning of being reborn is. Christ said, "Marvel not if I say, you must be reborn. " Now people have forgotten. They simply interpret it as having certain forms and rites and rituals and believing in some Master; and that is to be reborn. Well, that is not so. If you go to it without any prejudice, you will find the same Truth. We, in our own zealousness, consider that perhaps we have the only truth and nobody else. Well, the Truth is there; Masters came to give out the Truth. Of course, They gave out whatever was necessary at the time. But They all referred to that: you must be reborn. By a parallel study of religions, which I have done since I was a child, and by sitting at the feet of my Master, I have come to that very one hundred percent Truth. I have met heads of various religions. They all give in there; they cannot deny it. Fact remains fact; Truth is Truth. So, I have regard for all Masters.
This question was already put to my Master: "Why don't You raise a new religion?" What did He say? He said, "There are already so many wells existing. What is the use of digging up a new well? Why not take the water out from the wells that already exist?" Truth is there. You perhaps have read the book, Naam or Word. What is in there? It gives references— quotations —from all religions What more is wanted? The pity is that we have forgotten. We worship the same God—call Him by one Name or the other; that makes no difference. We are concerned with that Reality which is spoken of by so many names. Whether you say water in English or aqua in Latin or many other names in other languages, all the same we are concerned with the liquid called by those names. Unless we have the liquid, there is no use simply repeating one name or the other. That only directs our attention towards that thing that is liquid, by drinking which your thirst is quenched.
This is the truth. Who can deny it, tell me, when all men are born the same way? Is there any man who denies that? Brahmins are people, I would say now, who claim, "We are born with special privileges from God—we are superior to all men." Once Kabir, the great Saint, simply put to them a very blunt question: "If you are superior, why were you not born some other way?" Do you see?
All men are alike. Their outer construction is the same-they all have two eyes, two ears, two hands, two feet. They are born the same way, and all other outer things are the same. It is we who make differences. It is we who make divisions. When Masters come, They look from a universal point of view. They consider all humanity to be Their family.
Four children of the Tenth Guru of the Sikhs were killed. His wife came and asked Him, "Where are my children?" He said, "Never mind: four have died, but so many are alive."
This is the angle of vision of the Masters. They look from the angle of the man-body, or the soul —the embodied soul. As man we are all one. Of course, I'm carrying this badge, you' re carrying those badges: all the same, we are men first. The same difficulties reside in us: Our souls are under the control of mind; mind is under the control of the Outgoing faculties; we are given up to outward enjoyments, all of us. They say the body is the temple of God. We are in the body; there is some Power which is keeping us in the body, otherwise, we would have run away out of this man-body; but we cannot. So unless we withdraw from the outside—our attention is withdrawn from outside—we can have no awareness of our own. Unless we know ourselves, we cannot know about the Power that is controlling us m the body.
Then where is the difference? God is Light—all Masters say so: God is Light. Of course, They use Their own words. Some say it is Jyoti; some say it is Noor some say it is Truth clothed in Light. Where is the difference? Even when Zoroaster came, what did He say? He advised His followers to keep a fire burning constantly in their homes. And what sort of fire? It should be unstruck fire: Sraosha. My point is, I am not giving out something new—some new religion, some new concept. This Is the, old, old Truth which has been the same all along. We have been forgetting it; Masters have been coming to revive it. Again the time has arrived.
We have so many religions. Why are there so many religions when the Truth is one? The difference is due to this fact: among those who have realized the Truth, there is no difference; among those who have not realized it, there are parties and separate sects, subsects, and so on—and they are increasing daily. This is apparently due to the fact that we have not realized—seen—the Truth, that's all.
So, when Masters come, They don't start any new religion. They say there are already so many social bodies of religions. Remain in whichever one you are; you have taken the first step. Now take the other step, which is given in our own scriptures, but which we have forgotten.
What do They do now? I went to the king of the army of Templars. He had invited me. They were going to make new Templars. Generally they don't allow anyone else to be there, but in Germany they especially invited me. I went there. What did they do? Those who were to be made Templars were made to stand up. A candle was lit outside and they put it in front of them. Then each one was given that which they customarily give him. Then another man put a sword on his head. Well, what does that show? We must crucify ourselves to reach that Light. But they have forgotten the inside, and they don't know how to crucify themselves to take up the cross daily. What is the cross? Have you ever considered it? A cross is that. [Master opens His arms wide, so that His body makes a cross.] Is it not a cross? Take the cross daily; rise above body-consciousness, and see the Light within. That is becoming a true Templar. In any religion you'll find the same thing. In all places of worship you have the same symbols: Light and Sound. Unless we rise above the body take up the cross daily—we cannot have that Light; we cannot hear the Voice of God.
So, I assure you I'm giving you no new faith, mind that. Don' t be misled . Remain in your own religion, but try to understand more. The pity is that our ministers are also not in the full know of things.
I had a long talk at the Vatican in Rome—about two or three hours long—with the bishop in charge of the non-Christian religions. When we talked over the whole thing he said, "What You say is right."
"All right, now that you see this is the true teaching of Christ, why don't you change the whole thing?" I quoted the example of Pope John. When he started something, he never consulted his committee—he ordered: "Do that!" If John could order it, why can't it be done now? He said, "If we do it now, half of the bishops will revolt. We will bring them around in time. "
So Truth is Truth. Any awakened man does realize that. That's another thing: one man thinks, in the zealousness of his own system, we have got the only truth. Mohammedans say they are the only ones born that way. And the Christians, too, perhaps say that nobody else at all has come into the world with the Truth. Well, Truth is Truth.
The other day I went to a Unity Church. I asked the minister, "What are your teachings?" He gave me a pamphlet. I read it; it said there, ''Christ lived before Jesus"—that very wording is there: "Christ lived before Jesus." And what is Christ? One man came up to me when I was here the last time in 1955 and put the question to me, "When is Christ returning?" I told him, "Has He ever left you?" That is the point. Christ said, "I shall never leave thee nor forsake thee till the end of the world." If He has not left us, where is the question of returning?
So, I read that pamphlet the other day. I've got it with me. It says, "Christ lived before Jesus." Christ is the God Power or the Guru Power which continues to come from time to time for the guidance of the child Humanity. It came even before Christ Jesus, before Buddha or Guru Nanak or anybody. We are all His children. How can He disregard His children? Those who were born before Christ Jesus or Guru Nanak or anybody—what about their fate? And what about those who came after them? Let us assume for one moment that those who believe in Them will be saved. Then what about those who came before Them? Will they all be doomed? This is seen from a common-sense point of view. The fact remains a fact. Any awakened man realizes that.
My point is, we are all children of God: we are all men first—embodied souls. The soul is of the same essence as that of God, and the same Controlling Power is keeping us in the body. The man-body is a golden opportunity we have in which we can realize God. But to realize God we must know ourselves first; because it is only the soul, the conscious entity, that can know Him: like alone can know the like. He cannot be known by the outgoing faculties, or by the intellect, or by the vital airs. These are the facts.
So that God Power continues - the Sonship continues. Only for want of practical people we zealously stick to one thing or the other; and what is the result?—religious wars, in which thousands of people are killed
I am giving you a broader view. Does not the Bible say that God does not reside in temples made by the hand of man? What should we say now? We have respect for the holy places of worship because people sit together there in sweet remembrance of God. "Where more than one man sits," Christ said, "I am there."
Who is Christ? Christ is God Power. Call it Christ Power or Guru Nanak Power or Kabir Power—that is God Power which manifested at human poles to guide the child Humanity. So we have regard for them all.
So, this is no new faith, please, mind that- there are no labels so far. So long as I remain, I won't permit it. If the people after me do it, then that is their own fate. But remember, this is no new faith. It is only a common ground, called a spiritual gathering, where men of all religions sit together—here, sometimes in the hundreds; in India, in the thousands—of all faiths, of all religions. They're given only the teachings of an ethnical life, of purity of life, and of a contact with God, that's all. You may say a prayer this way or that way, or perform a certain ritual this way or that way. Of course, they are meant to develop love and devotion in us. That is the first step—that's all right. The second is to understand the true import of the scriptures that we have—to understand them. But to understand them we need Somebody Who has had those experiences, Who has been on the Way. That is why all are dear to me.
Hindus ask me to come; I go over there and give them something from their scriptures: "Your scriptures say that." I go to the Sikh temples; I went here in Vancouver: "Here are your scriptures." Do you know what I mean to say? They consider that their religions probably have something new. Well, I say, although the outer social bodies of all religions are different, of course, the inner Truth is the same. I go to all different kinds of churches: I met the Orthodox Christians; I met the Coptics, the Byzantines, the Protestants, the Roman Catholics; I met the Jews. Among all, the basic principle is the same. I gave a talk in a Jewish temple. Do you remember how they appreciated it? Moses heard these commandments through Light and strong thunder. They referred to it. The pity is that we have forgotten the Truth, that's all. For want of practical people we consider that we know better. Well, the Truth is one. You join a school in order to get a degree in your education. You must be educated. And when you come out of any school or college you have your degree. Do you write on the degree, "I have an MA from a Christian college or a Hindu college?" You never write that. Similarly, this is a degree in Spirituality, already referred to in our scriptures, but which we have forgotten. We need Someone Who knows the Way, that's all. He knows the Way; He can give us that experience.
Past Masters are also needed; had They not come, Their scriptures would not have been with us. Now, they testify to what we say. Yet, I tell you, a Master Who has known the Way is not dependent upon the scriptures. Even without past scriptures, He knows the Way; He can give the Way. He simply quotes from scriptural references in order to give satisfaction to people who then realize "Really, these are our own teachings." That's all. It's a practical thing.
Thank you, this is no new faith, mind that, dear friend.
Q: What effect does suicide have on the soul's development, Maharaj Ji?
M: Well, the blind lead the blind, and both fall into the ditch. They are expecting heaven after death. If, while alive, a man is not in heaven, how can he be after death? A man who is learned while alive remains learned after death. If I go out of this room, I will be the same as I am here; I cannot change by my going out; I remain the same. So similarly, you see what by my going out; I remain the same. So similarly, you see, what we are when we leave the body, we cannot change by leaving the body; we cannot become, I mean, angels. Those who are given up like anything to the outward enjoyments, they are the earth-bound souls. Those who are better, who have gone a little higher—and that is what is proved nowadays by the Spiritualists - they contact souls. And those who have become divine or spiritually pure, they go to the lap of the Father.
Q: Is there a particular karmic punishment because of the act of suicide or are the problems that caused the suicide doubled ?
M: By suicide what do you mean? He meant something else.
COMMENT: No, taking your life.
M: Yes. You see, our life is more valuable than our body; our body is more valuable than outward things. If we enter into a state of mind that we even hate our life, that we are going to kill ourselves this is a very strong action and that reaction will come. The Theosophical Society says that a man who commits suicide will commit suicide for at least one hundred births afterward. Each time that reaction will come again. Some people commit suicide for no reason.
COMMENT: Because the urge of killing is there.
M: Yes, yes, it is a reaction. That's a heinous crime, to kill oneself. How can you ever dream of killing your own life? It's a very strong reaction. If some Controlling Power, some higher Power or God Power or Christ Power, you might say, is there, that reaction might be softened down; that's another thing.
Q: You say a hundred times thereafter?
M: This, theosophical literature tells us. That reaction comes up. We generally never want to sacrifice our life; with how much difficulty we do! We wouldn't like to die; we would rather sacrifice everything, all our outer possessions and even have the body cut open, to save it. Nobody wants to die. But if a man wants to die, it means it is a very strong action; that must react. Yes, please?
Q: You say that God is Love and love will take one to the heart center: that's in the heart—in the heart center, and yet the Science of the Soul begins at the sixth ganglion, and there's still a center in between. How can that be reconciled ?
M: I tell you, these are the words that sometimes mislead us. Soul is love personified. God is Love and soul is also love, being of the same essence as God. The heart of the physical body lies here [Master points to the heart]. The heart of the Saints lies here [He points to the forehead between the eyes]. Do you see? When they say it is a question of heart and not of head, they make a difference here. The head means the intellect; not this head, but this intellect. And the heart means our own Self. Love is ingrained in our own soul, not in any particular part of the body. What is the machinery of the heart? It is only some little growth of flesh. It is left behind when we die. If it is love, even when it is left behind, it should emit love. Does it? When a man is dead and the soul leaves the body, is there any love left in the heart? So, love is in our souls. And the seat of the soul is at the back of the eyes; from there it enlivens the whole body.
There are six ganglions m the body, but Masters don't touch them. They give you a lift to come up to the seat of the soul all at once, and they start from there. How great a concession it is! Yes, please?
Q: Masters speak of wrong yoga practices leading the forces downward on the spine into the area of the kundalini. Could You expand on that a little bit, please?
M: I tell you, there are ways and ways: there are man-made ways, and there are God-made ways. The times have changed. There are so many systems of yoga. These yoga systems were introduced in the olden ages. There are four ages: the golden age, the silver age, the copper age, and the iron age. They say these systems were introduced in the golden age. Then people lived up to one million years. It is said so in the Hindu scriptures. One sage, Singhi rishi, put in 88 thousand years in yoga practices; and excuse me, I need not point out that, as told in the scriptures, he was led away by desire and had a son. Even after doing 88 thousand years of penances that way, he could not control lust. Do you see?
Then, in the second age, the life-span was cut down to ten thousand years. Even then we could not put in some one, two, or three thousand years in the practices. In the copper age their length of life was cut down to one thousand years. Even then we could not put in two or three hundred years that way. Nowadays, nobody lives beyond sixty or seventy years, on the average. How can we today do those systems that were introduced in the olden ages? We are hereditarily not fit for them. Those are longer ways, time-consuming and hazardous. So, Masters cut out the prana system altogether to befit the times. This is the natural yoga that you have been given: it requires only that you be still physically and intellectually; and a little lift is given; you know your soul.
You are of the same essence as that of God. This concession is given according to the times; Masters introduced it.
With due deference to all those ways—they are difficult and we are not fit for them. You referred to the Kundalini question. The kundalini arises from the rectum, and thus passes through the spinal cord, and comes out at the head. That is a very much longer way. And from its practice, the whole body appears to be burning like fire from head down to foot. There is no remedy for it. Only a very strong man could suffer and withstand it.
One man met me in India about three years ago. He was doing kundalini and he was all-burning from head down to foot: that kundalini power had awakened. And he came to me and said, "I am in very much trouble; I cannot do anything about it. I've been to hundreds of people, but nobody can help me." I told him, "Please put that aside. Your purpose is to come up here [to the seat of the soul]. Why not come up by the straight way, the natural way?" So, I gave him a sitting. He was initiated, and all the trouble was gone.
Why take up the longer ways? If you have airplanes nowadays, why do you go on plodding on foot? Times have changed. There are various ways, of course, but we are not fit for them, honestly—without any exaggeration. Today, three children sat: they saw light, and they heard the sound of bell and thunder and drum-beat. The other way you cannot prove it; this way you do prove it. And the yogis, I tell you, cannot prove Spirituality all at once as you do in this way. They say, "Go on, do it! It will come in due course." But this way, everybody can prove it—see for his own self—within half an hour or so. So, this is the latest, I mean, concession of God for those who are really seeking after Him, to befit the age; that's all. Yes?
Q: Is the life span of an individual determined at birth ?
Q: Nothing one can do about it to either shorten it or lengthen it?
M: Yes. He can shorten it; he can prolong it . But it is definitely ordained—all Masters say so. Even Christ sad, "Thy days are numbered." Our age is fixed, not according to the number of years or months or days, mind that; it is fixed according to the number of breaths we take. Do you see? The right use of breaths can prolong our life, and the wrong use of breaths can shorten our life. Normally we take eight to ten breaths a minute. When we are passionate, we take eighteen to twenty breaths a minute. Is it not shortened? If you have a rhythmic life, you take three to four breaths a minute—that prolongs it. And if you do kumbhak, you learn to control the breathing inside. I have met people who could even control their breath for two hours; I have met people who were put underground for seven days; then, your life is prolonged. But Masters don't advise us to take up that way because we have to develop spiritually; by following that way you do not. It can show miracles to others; but, really, your inner life should change. You must come in contact with the Light and Sound Principle. Your life can be prolonged and shortened, but not beyond the number of breaths you have to take. Yes?
Q: In leaving the body—for instance, when the spirit leaves the body—what might be considered the escape hatch, you might say? At what point would the spirit leave the body ?
M: At what place? Have you seen a man dying? What happens then? The life is withdrawn from underneath; it goes up slowly and then comes to the back of the eyes; the eyes are upturned; then the drop scene (a term used for drop or act-drop; also for the final scene of a play or drama in real life, that on which the curtain drops) comes. So, the seat of the soul is at the back of the eyes; there the drop-scene comes. That is why Masters say, "Learn to die so that you may begin to live"; that is, to whatever point in the body you go at the time of death, you are to go while you are alive. When the meditation is given, you come up here, is it not so? And here the soul leaves the body. Yes?
Q: When you leave the body does the heart stop and everything?
M: No, no. The heart stops only when you control the prana, the vital airs. In this, the heart continues working; nothing is disturbed. The heart stops only in the cases of those who are put underground, who control the pranas. No, the heart does not stop; not in the least. The breathing becomes rhythmic, of course. Yes?
Q: Is it not actually the diaphragm that is the last thing to stop beating?
M: Yes, surely, surely.
Q: The heart goes first and the diaphragm is last.
M: Slowly, the breathing goes out, stops, becomes long breaths. Even when machinery stops—the engine is stopped—the lower portion goes on slowly.
Q: Would You please give us some lesson on how we might be more loving ? How we might practice the values—how we might practice love more ?
M: Love? I think there is no need of giving any lecture. Everybody knows how to love. But we have not understood the right way to love. That is misused, I would say. Love is ingrained in our own selves. God is Love; and love is also ingrained in us, because we are of the same essence as that of God. Love knows attachment; that is but natural. We must have somebody to be attached to—it may be right; it may be wrong.
We are spirit. The love of the spirit or the conscious being should be love with the All-Spirit, All-Consciousness. That natural love which is within us is attached to the outward things: to the body, to the passions, to the enjoyments. Those are not conscious. But the more you are attached to those things, you feel drawn from inside; that is but natural. But that love has been misplaced. When that very love is attached to the body and outward enjoyments, it is called attachment. And when that very love comes in contact with God, it is called charity. It is the same thing - misdirected. Misdirected love is called attachment, and rightly directed love is called charity.
This question was put to Maulana Rumi; a Mohammedan Saint. He said, "Don't think that that is love which is developed by our eating and drinking. That is called lust." Love is the quality of the soul. The soul overflows with love if it is withdrawn from Outside. The outward expression of soul is what? Attention. In the many ways our attention is diffused, so also is our love distributed. If that is withdrawn from outside that will overflow. And if it comes in contact with All-Consciousness, the lover will be the mouthpiece of God. They say a Saint is defined as One Who is overflowing with love for God and for all of humanity.
So, it is not lust, mind that that love is attached to the body and the outgoing faculties, and it stands in the way of realization, mind that. If love starts from the physical body and becomes absorbed in the soul, that is right; you can go up. But if it is just attached to the body and the outward attachments, it is standing in the way. That very thing is called lust.
So, if you want to develop love, just withdraw your attention from outside. Come within your own self; you'll be overflowing with love. If you come within your own self, then you'll see the Controlling Power which is All-Love; and you'll be overflowing with love. This love cannot be purchased in shops; it is not grown in fields. It is already within you. There is one way to have an impetus to have it; that is, by being in the company of Saints, of Those Who have a life of love not of lust, mind that, but of love. In Their company, our love is awakened—it is flared up.
This question was put to Guru Amar Das. He said, "Thousands of curses be on the man who has the man-body and has not developed love for God. And thousands of curses be on the man who is attached to the outward side, to the world, and has forgotten himself and God." Then He said, "What are we to do? Where are we to get this love?" All Masters say, Love God with all thy heart, with all thy soul, with all thy mind. So, we have to love God. But He said, "How are we to have it?" The first thing is by withdrawing from outside and coming in the company of Someone Who is Love Personified, Who is overflowing with love for God and for all of humanity—for the sake of God, not for the sake of the physical bodies that we are carrying, whether they are black or white: for the sake of the soul in us. That love will be flared up when you come across the company of Someone in Whom that love is overflowing. They are called Saints. They have that love fired up. What happens? When that love is there, all your attention is withdrawn from outside and is attracted there. The glow of God, or the beauty of God, is centered there. That attracts every soul. When the soul has been withdrawn and the attention has also been withdrawn from outside, you get a flaring up. The principle works the same way, by withdrawing your attention from outside. First you have to make an effort. In this way you are drawn in of itself. When you come within you, love is there. Yes?
Q: Do You have in India, in Delhi, India, a protégé under Your tutorship to carry on when You leave the Physical plane?
COMMENT: Do You have a successor that You are schooling now?
M: Yes, I am schooling so many; let us see whom the God selects. Truly speaking, mind that, even in the Master, it is the God working in Him. That will come of itself when God wishes it, you see. I wish each one of you would be selected. But you must come up to the mark. I wish each one of you would be ambassadors. Yes.
I told you what happened last time when I came in 1955. Two children came to me. I generally make children sit; and they got some light, etc. Then, I asked them, "What do you want?" They said, "We want to become Masters." "All right, you have been put on the Way. Go on with it—you may be selected as a Master." It is not a selection from the people below as you select a president or a minister, or this and that thing. It is a selection from God, you see. Yes?
Q: Master, in one of the mimeographed releases through the years, it was said that Guru Nanak prophesied there would be fourteen Gurus of the Sikhs and then seventy lesser Gurus after that.
M: What have you to do with it? Mind your own business. The same thing comes up: "When is Christ returning?" It is God's Will. He cannot leave His children, who are seeking, alone. There is food for the hungry and water for the thirsty. Yes?
Q: I wondered what system of breathing we should all use that would help us?
THE MASTER: Natural. Very plain. When a child is born, what sort of breathing has he? We distort our breathing, I tell you honestly Children take a deep breath; their belly is first full and then the lungs. And our lungs are filled first and then the belly That's the wrong way. You watch any child, any little child, when he is breathing: first the stomach is blown up, and then the upper portion, and then the stomach—like that.
M: Abdomen. Now what do we do? Our lungs are first swollen, then the belly. And the breathing does not go into the belly—abdomen. That's the natural way. Yes, please?
Q: Can we send the circulars that are released to people who we think might be interested but know nothing of the Path?
M: Oh yes, send them to anybody; it is all a gift of God. I have no reserved rights (no copyright); even in my books I have not given any reserved rights. People write a little pamphlet and they say: "All rights are reserved " I have given out books and there you'll find: "No rights are reserved"—as it is a gift from God for all of humanity. You'll find this seems very unnatural in the eyes of some people, because they want to earn—usurp—some rights. Well, this is a gift from God. If I have anything, that is from God, and God's gift should be given to all. We must learn to stand on our own earnings. And to sell the gifts of God?! Is it not like that? Guru Nanak says it is a heinous crime to sell the gifts of God. They must be given free.
What are we doing? Any Master Who comes up will look at it from that very angle. Nowhere in my books will you find rights reserved. You will find, of course, that the rights of the books are not reserved; for they are given to all of humanity. You can make hundreds of copies and send them out to people at large. That is what I mean.
Are there any rights reserved on the Bible? I think they have got it now. Similarly, for the other scriptures, too, they have reserved rights now; but it was not so before. Yes?
Q: Master, would You kindly explain the principle and the importance of Simran?
M: Well, it is very clear. Whom do you remember? The one whom you love, don't you remember him? What is remembrance? It is a symbol of having love for somebody. If you have love for somebody, all the time you are remembering him, perhaps not with your mouth, but with your heart. And whomever you want to love, remember him constantly, and that will develop love, that's all.
Why do we do Simran or remembrance, the first step, in this way? Because, you know, through the various outgoing faculties, the impressions of the outside world have been heaped up within us to overflowing capacity. Our subconscious reservoir of the mind is overflowing with worldly impressions. These impressions came by the remembrance of outward things. We want to deplete that and then fill it with the sweet remembrance of God—so much so that even in dreams we will have the same thing; so much so that even if we go into a very deep state of sleep these words may reverberate through our mouth. Suchlike remembrance is the first step: to deplete the subconscious reservoir of the mind which is already overflowing with the impressions or the remembrances of the world. Then the next step is, truly speaking, purity of heart: when nothing else is there other than love of God or remembrance of God. That is truly a pure heart. And such a heart is required for someone to come up to Him.
So Simran is the first step, done for the sake of taking up the spiritual way. They say love God, is it not so? How? With all thy heart, with all thy soul, with all thy mind, with all thy strength. And loving God is what? You remember Him. The one whom you love, naturally his remembrance is there. Whomever you want to love, just keep him in your mind and that will react in his mind. This is but natural. That is what Christ meant when He said, "Let my words abide in you, and you abide in me." The first part is very clear, but how can you abide in Him? When you remember someone that naturally causes a reaction there. That's a reaction, you see. If you want to abide in Him, you must only develop remembrance, sweetly. When you remember Him, you think of Him; as you think of Him, you become what He is. "As you think, so you become." So this is how you can abide in me. And He says then, "Whatever ye shall ask, you will have it. "
This is the first step. This is the principle on which this Simran, or repetition, or the sweet remembrance—call it by any name you like—is based: "As you think so you become." Yes?
Q: Master, we seem to have difficulty in learning to love our enemies or those with whom we do not agree. That seems my biggest problem.
M: Well, that is everybody's biggest problem. But the point is, if we know that he has the same soul which has been misdirected by mind under some impressions— he has the same soul; it's simply misdirected—if we have realized that, only then can we love our enemies. For the time being, sometimes you have to say something to somebody.
In the life of the Tenth Guru of the Sikhs, there was some aggression on another's part. He had to take a stand to save innocent people. At that time, a battle was fought with arrows. So, what did He do? In the front of each arrow He put some gold, so that if anybody was hurt, he could remedy it. A man is not killed by an arrow all at once—he only becomes wounded. So he put some gold in the front of the arrow which would go into someone and inflict a wound; so that if he were wounded he would have some money to help himself get cured. This is what is called love your enemies.
Q: Master, in the meeting there are times when people come to tell us that they have taken an oath of poverty, and they feel that it is wrong to have a lot of things. And we were going to ask You about it—how to handle that situation.
COMMENT: She said at the meetings many people come and say they have taken an oath of poverty—they don't want to have a lot of money.
COMMENT: And so that's the question that comes up — how much poverty should one have ?
M: That is a good question. The world is full of hypocrites. You have to guard against that. Do you see? The point is, we are only to live on two loaves of bread or one loaf bread. Our own expenditure is not more than a dollar or two a day, if we live a simple life. All the rest of what we earn is for the children or friends or other people. If we hold on to millions, they are left behind. We simply use what we spend for clothing or what we eat. So all Masters say you should earn your living by sweat of your brow, by the dint of hard labor —honest earnings. Live on it your own self and share with others.
In Punjabi, this man-body is called day. Day means two things: one, "body"; the other, "give." Kabir says, "So long as you have this 'day' or body, always learn to give, give, give and give." So, whatever we earn, it is not for our own selves. That is why I issued a circular: simplify, simplify, simplify, and simply We should cut down our desires, demands, to what we want. Then we will have money to help others. Now people say we do not have enough money to live on our own selves. Why? Because our desires are greater than what is really wanted. You cannot help others unless you cut down on your own living: not cut it down to your death, I don't mean that. Maintain yourself, maintain your family, and try to share with others, however little it may be — it may be one cent. In that way the self expands. Give, give and give. And love knows service and sacrifice. If you love God and love all of humanity, naturally you'll know to serve others who are naked, the hungry, the thirsty, others who are in want, who are sick. So man is one who lives for others, mind that. Even animals live for their own selves. What then is the difference between the two? Yes, please?
Q: Do I understand You to say that, in other words, in another way—
Q: that a person can be a millionaire or a multi-millionaire—
Q: and live very simply with the minimum of comfort—
Q: and yet have his money work to help others, to employ others ?
M: What did Christ say? He clearly said, "Those of you who want Him who want to enter the Kingdom of God—distribute all your wealth and come to me." Then He said, "It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a wealthy man to enter into the Kingdom of God." That refers to the man who has expanded out into the world—who is very much given up to the outward enjoyments, in an expanded way. Instead of that, you can live in a simple way which is best suited to maintain your health. Maintain your health; the body is the true temple of God. The longer you can keep it, the better, because in the man-body only you can know God. But, we can live on whatever is required. With whatever you can save, you can help others, otherwise, you cannot help others. That's the natural law, you see. Yes?
Q: Master, was there ever such a thing as a Pope, I mean, Saint Peter?
COMMENT: He wants to know whether there was ever a Saint Peter, the founder of the Catholic Church.
M: Well, I don't know. I've read about Him in scriptures. The scriptures tell us there was. Excuse me, now people are even going to doubt whether the Christ, Jesus, lived or not. Then what are we to do? We are concerned with the teachings, please—that's all. The teachings are the same as given by the Masters—with due deference to all. History is generally written later on, when nobody any longer knows.
I tell you, I was going to write about Tulsi, a great Saint from the East. I wanted to find out His lineage, in connection with the life of Baba Jaimal Singh I wrote. I could not find it. He was the eldest brother Who was to succeed to the throne of the Hulkar family. He left the scene, became a recluse, and later on turned out to be a Saint. And the second brother sat on the throne. I tried to find out whether his name was Sham Rao Hulkar, but his name was also not given in history. What was I to do? I know that when a man leaves a place, the people there say that he was nobody. I am nobody in my home there, at the feet of the Masters. This generally happens.
So history is history. Whether He existed or not, the important thing is what we learn from His teachings—whether we get anything. If we are going to doubt, then everything is doubtful. Well, Masters always say, only believe what you see. Don't believe in the sayings of scriptures, either, or in the sayings of the past Masters, unless you have the same experience your own self. You can take it up as an experimental measure. But we cannot be convinced unless we have the same experience our own selves—whether it is a little or more; we can develop it. Yes?
Q: Coming back to simplifying the life: those of us who have houses—they all need upkeep—the garden, and so forth. Would it not be better then, to sell the house and just move into a small little cabin or a room and have more money then, or time on hand?
M: All right—why spoil the show? Continue with that. And then save further if you can, that's all
Q: I didn't understand it.
COMMENT: Why spoil the show? Continue on like you've been doing.
M: And? Save your money for the future, and help others.
Q: But it doesn't give enough time.
M: Well, I tell you: if need be, you may sell your things—if need be. If thousands of people are dying and hungry—well, sell your everything for them. Out of love you have to do that. But that is not a general rule, you see. That's giving up everything for the sake of others. That requires a very great development. If you sell all that, then where are you to live? If you can afford to have another place, that's all right. Now we can change our life for the future, at least. And if you have anything—enough to spare—you may share it with others. There's no hard and fast rule against it. That love knows service and sacrifice. Yes? _
COMMENT: You've been here an hour and a half now.
THE MASTER: Well, we're talking, time flies away. That's all right. Anyhow, in talking we get so many things cleared up that you don't find clear while reading through scriptures— although references are given there. Yes, what do you want, please?
Q: Just a little continuation of the Sound Current. What do you do when you hear two sounds?
M: Well, take up the higher sound.
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