Farewell talk Louisville, Ky. - November 11, 1963
What is a true Satsangi ?
You know that Christ once said to His disciples, "I don't want to make you slaves, but friends." Slaves do not know what a friend can be. Slaves only know to do what is said. You can appreciate anyone if you work along with him and see what he is doing. So Christ said, "I make you my friends." I think it is better that I address you as friends: because I have told you many times that I am a man like you, with the same privileges that you have from God. But I have developed in a certain way; you have not. And that development is due to the grace of God, or the God working through my Master; that is, how to die while alive, how to be reborn, and how to be cut off from the attachments of the world, the body, and other things. That is a way within you already.
So I love you as friends, I would say. I regard you as the children of Light. Because I love God and that Light is everywhere, so I have to love you and have regard for you as well.
What I would especially like to bring to your notice is that initiation does not mean that you have become perfect. It is a way to perfection. One does not become a satsangi simply by being initiated. The word satsangi means: sat means unchangeable permanence; and sangi means one who is constantly in contact with it. We have been put on the way to analyze our soul from mind and the outgoing faculties and to have some touch, some contact, with the God Power. When you remain a constant companion of that God Power, only then will you become a true satsangi. Now you have something, of course, to start with: you have learned how to contact it. But unless you begin to be conscious of that power all through, you are not a true satsangi.
We have to work up to that. We have to mold our lives in accordance with the principles of satsang in thought, speech, and action. If you simply pick up medicine and put it on the shelf, will your disease go away? All Masters say that those who live up to what they are told are destined to have the Master become their slave.
Let's say that a father has four or five children. Some children obey. him, others do not, and some children--not just because of obedience--even surrender to the will
of their father. As I told you yesterday, when you surrender, the Father becomes your slave. If a father has a very obedient son who just works according to his intentions and never asks for anything, what would the father do? When he leaves, he would simply hand over his key to that son, not to everybody.
The Master says, "Always look to the interest of others. Don't let others starve." That is what is required of those who live up to what they are told. Love requires, first of all: "If you love me, keep my commandments." We don't keep the commandments. Some do with modifications which suit their own interests. Unless we live up 100 percent to what the Master says, we cannot truly get to know what God is.
So, "actions speak louder than words." And thoughts are even more potent. A satsangi must, in his daily conduct, reveal what he is--not what he says, but what he is. If he says, "Love all," then see whether he loves all. If he loves all, is he always ready to help others, without any show? If he still loves, is he ready to sacrifice his everything for them?
Everyone can know so much about these things--libraries are full of them; scriptures are full of them; but it is just like--what do you say--loading an ass with books. What is it really? If a paddle or spoon moves through a sweet dish, will it get any taste out of it? To know so many things in your brain will do you little or no good; or perhaps it will do more evil than good, because then you will act and pose: "Oh, I know so much." But you don't live up to it. So the main thing is, we must live it, and live it not willy-nilly, but with pure love and devotion.
Obedience comes next. And obedience is also not sufficient: we should surrender. This is what is needed. All Masters have been saying that. If someone finds some shortcoming in you, what does he say? "Oh, a satsangi is like that. Perhaps the Master teaches that way." Some people have been writing to me on account of some shortcomings here or there. I always reply to them, "Pity it is that I have to carry on with imperfect people. They are all not perfect--they are all on the way to perfection. Those who are on the way to perfection, here and there, they do fall. So just forgive and forget. We should be on the way for the common cause of God."
That is why what is needed is to live up to it. Truth is above all, but true living is still above truth. People don't know whether you can have a contact with the light of God or not:
they will see how you live, how you behave, what your treatment of others is.
Are you fighting with others for selfish motives? Are you usurping others' rights? Are you sucking the blood of others? They will see you from that level. Here's a bulb. If the glass is besmeared with filth, although the light is there, it won't give off light. So the bulb should be pure, quite clean, without any dirt. Our hearts must be pure: what we have in our hearts should be at our mouths, and what is at our mouths should agree with our thoughts. When there is agreement between these three, then consider that it is right. Sometimes we do one thing for many days; it becomes a habit. Habit turns into nature. It is very difficult to remove that habit that has formed itself to our nature.
So, first of all, what are we to do? I would say, perform no action in secret. There is no doubt about it: you will find this a very helpful factor. Perform no action in secret. If anything requires secrecy, abandon it at once. Deeds of darkness are committed in the dark. This is the first thing. That is the criterion of a sin--you want secrecy. Just consider this in all your ways of life.
Then, further, do nothing which, after having been done, leads you to tell lies. That is also a criterion for something wrong. Lying follows a sin because you want to conceal it. I tell you, the criterion of a Saint is that you will find Him doing the same thing everywhere, inside or outside, at midnight or during the daytime, in the pulpit, or in private rooms. Hafiz says, "When we go to the pulpit we give very long yarns of talks, but when we go to secret places, we do otherwise."
Mind that, God is within you and the God Power--the God-in-man--watches everything. How can you deceive Him? You can deceive others. Our Master used to say, "If a child of five years of age is sitting by you, you won't do anything unbecoming in his presence. You will require secrecy." When you think that when the Master gives looks to the very thoughts that arise, and knows the very trend that you have to follow, then how can you deceive Him? So I always say, "Be true to your own self." If you are true to your own self, how can you deceive others? This is the main criterion.
And further, don't desire evil for anyone, irrespective of creed or color, even in thought--for anyone, not just necessarily your initiate brother: because whatever thought arises poisons you. Others don't know it, but you will be poisoned. And because of their radiation, you will find that thoughts are more potent. The other day I gave you the example of Akbar the Great, King of India. Birbal was his minister. He told the King that whatever a man thinks about anyone reacts in the other's mind. The King said, "How can that be proved?" So the minister took him away to some place along the roadside.
A man was coming at a distance and the minister told the King, "Just think anything about him in your mind." The King was going bareheaded. He thought in his mind about that man who was approaching: "I should shoot him."
When. the man came by, he passed the King, and the King said to him, "Look here, tell me truly; I will forgive you if you say it; but what struck you when you saw my face?" The man said, "I thought I should break your head with my fist."
Thoughts react, do you see? Never think evil of others. When we say anything against anyone, what is that but thinking evil of others. When we backbite, what do we do? We think evil of others. When we make parties, one against the other, what do we do? We tell this side one thing and that side something else. You are deceiving your own selves, and the God in you sees you.
I may mention to you today one incident. There are always controversies going on. In my own life, Master once ordered me during His lifetime to initiate about 250 people in the monthly gathering. Those who were after the Mastership became worried: "What is going to happen? Everything is gone from our hands." They made parties and spread a great deal of propaganda against me, in writing, through letters, and this and that thing. I was true to my own Self. The Master had ordered me to do it; and to give talks at Satsang places, attend the poor, the sick, the needy, everyone. Even when I left the office, I used to be attending the sick until eight, nine, or ten o'clock at night, and sometimes even later than that.
The Master had ordered me to do it; and letters about me, written by the parties concerned, began to pour in, in all languages, from different towns. They were all about the same subject: "He's such a man; he's such a man; he's such a man. And Master also knew about all the letters. There were heaps of letters from all around.
My Master had always asked me, when I went to see Him, "Well, come on, please, and give a talk." And what did I do? He was sitting there, and He made me sit near Him, like a son or a student. I would speak my heart to Him--I would open my heart to Him in a heart-to-heart talk--and the people enjoyed.
But they had arranged it so that for eight months regularly I was not permitted to go near the Master, not even to talk to Him. So much propaganda was being carried on!
But I would just look at His eyes, and that was sufficient for me: because eyes speak more than words.
My Master used to go to the hills. My elder brother went there (I did not even tell this secret to my brother. Why complain of the Master and His disciples to someone else?), and I simply asked Him, "When you find yourself all alone with the Master, simply ask Him if there are any drawbacks or if there is anything I've done wrong. (The disciple can err; only Masters are saved from that.) I may have erred knowingly or unknowingly. Just talk with the Master."
When my brother came back, I asked him, "Did you ask the Master about it?" And he said, "Yes. The Master said, 'I know he has done nothing wrong, either knowingly or unknowingly; but strangely enough, so much water passed over his head, yet he never came to Me to tell Me about it.'"
So naturally, when Master returned--I never asked any time from my Master--I said,
"I want a few minutes with You."
"Oh, yes, you're welcome."
When the day had passed and it was about nine or ten in the night, He sent for me and said, "Close the doors."
I was with Him, sitting by Him. I told Him, "I did not come to You because I know that You are in me and seeing my every action--watching my every action and also the trend of my life: You know where I am going. That is why I never came to You."
He was all wroth, He said, "Those people have created so much hell."
I said, "Well, I have not come for that."
What did He say the next day? I used to always sit at the back, just watching. He sat on the throne--on the pulpit--and said, "Well, Kirpal Singh, come on, give your talk!"
And those around Him who were making parties said, "No, Master, we won't like to hear him; we would like to hear from You directly."
He said, "No, he will talk." They insisted very much. And still He ordered me: "You come here and talk to them."
Strangely enough, the tables were turned in one night. This is what I say: if at all anything appealed to my Master, it was my frankness, my being true to myself. I think it is a great qualification.
If we are true to our own selves, how can we sin? How can we make parties and talk against others: I write you one thing, you write that man, that man writes someone else; and that goes on, creating friction and parties. You say, "Oh, well, I have not done anything: I'm quite all right; I'm His slave; I'm His servant; I've practiced sacrificing"--that means cutting the very roots! The result is that the whole satsang is defamed. That has been the cause of trouble here, too, honestly speaking. Through God's grace and through your cooperation, I think most of the trouble has subsided. If anything is still there, I would request you to wash it away, by love.
Do you know how many days I have spent on that? Even in Chicago? We must be true to our own selves. Anytime the Master asked me something, I would answer Him. Why do you conceal it from your Master? We are even sometimes going to, I mean, dethrone the Master, and we make parties like that. What nonsense it is! Is the Master made by you? Or is He made by God? So you are saved from suchlike things if you are true to your own self. The only true sympathizer of yours is the Master, and nobody else.
So, do nothing for which, after having done it, you have to tell lies. Thank God, thank my Master (the God in Him) and the cooperation of you all, that this thing has subsided. We are now all in a loving embrace. One thing more I would say: try to help somebody else. You are not born for your own selves. Share your incomes with those Poor fellows, those who are needy, those who are hungry, those who are unclothed. Always try to share; because God resides in every heart. I gave you a parable on how to feed each other: "Don't bend your arms." So always stretch out to others. This way you will be saved from many things.
And one thing more: Never try to remain alone, unless you become a Master--perfect. Let all your words and actions be as if you are in His presence, whether you are outside or inside or anywhere.
Two seekers after truth went to a Master to be put on the way. What did He do? He gave them two pigeons and told them, "Go someplace where nobody will see you and kill them." One man went out behind a wall, killed the pigeon, and came back: "Master, I've killed it. There was nobody there."
The other poor fellow was hunting, knocking about from place to place, in many secret places, many lonely places, from morn to night. He could not find any place where nobody was seeing him. He came back: "Master, I'm helpless. I could not find any place where nobody was seeing me." Who was it?" He said, "The very pigeon was seeing me." When he went to kill it, it looked at him.
It was the God in him. Just think. These are very simple things, but they are pregnant with meaning. God resides in every heart. He also resides in you. He is watching our every action.
Similarly, God in man, the Master, also looks to our shortcomings, but He does so lovingly. He wants to wash them away. So always remain in His presence. That is why Kabir said, "When the Master initiates you (Master is not the body; it is the God-power working in Him); He resides with you forever." One thing, He is always present. Can you do any sin, tell lies, deceive others, act or pose? No.
And further, just live up to what He says. "If you love Me, keep My commandments." Their purpose is that They are not to be transcended. If anything happens unknowingly, that is another thing. But don't intentionally do anything that He wants you not to do.
If you do these things, you have nothing to fear, even in the three worlds. These are the things that are required--to be lived up to. They are very simple things. What should you do, then? Every day, both in the morning and the evening, put in time for your meditation. How? Like a child. When children sit together, they forget everything. Do it like a child, with a clean heart, with enmity toward no one. The kingdom of God is for the children. A child goes to his mother. Does he draw any inferences to go to her? He goes simply out of love. He embraces her and goes into her lap. Say your prayers like that.
In the evening, too, keep your spiritual diary What do you do in the evening? Introspect yourself like a hard taskmaster: "What have I done today?" In the beginning you won't find any shortcoming in yourself because it has become a habit. There are so many drawbacks in us. I was a voracious reader of the biographies of the saints and great men, in my student life. I think I read more than 300 biographies. I found that each man made an introspection of his own life; he did something to supervise his own self. But how can we do it? Make no allowances; like a hard taskmaster, don't spare yourself.
Then what will you do? If you have done anything wrong, repent; that is very necessary. Shed tears: "God forgive me; I won't do it in the future."
And then, what will you do? For the future, be on guard. This is what is meant by the diary that has been given to you. I've kept a diary all through my life, even as a student.
We don't care what we are doing. Something passes out of our mouths and we don't even know what we are saying. Think twice before you say something: how will it affect another? Think twice about what you write. When you are in anger, don't reply to anyone. Go to a separate place: like a plague-stricken man, don't show your face. Be in a normal condition, and then greet him. If a man is not perfect, he has already let himself down, and others are also let down.
The purpose of the diaries is to recall what you have been doing from morn to night. You may have read about the Pelman System of Memory. That system is based on remembering what you did all day. In the beginning you'll say, "I rose up, I took a bath and ate, and went to my business or shop." But when you go into it, well, when you were just taking a bath, what were you thinking? Even thoughts are potent. These are the things that have to be watched. If you do it, well--it is not difficult to meet God, but it is difficult to make a man. For that reason: See no evil and hear no evil; talk no evil and think no evil. You will be saved. If anyone sees any evil against anyone, he says, "Oh, yes; he's like that." He works like an unpaid apprentice of the C.I.D. (Confidential Investigation Dept., the Indian equivalent of the American F.B.I.) of God. He's watching, I tell you.
We do not care for these things. The result is that we do not progress. If, by God's grace, you have been given a contact with the Light and Sound Principle, what stands in the way? Simply these things. So each one of us must work up to that. Some may say, "We are seniors" - that's all right. Others say, "We are old disciples; the new ones coming up are behind us on the path." No, no, no, no. A new initiate who lives like this will go ahead of you. Whoever does it, he will have it, that's all. So we have to be very careful about that. These are very little things, but little things harm you more than anything else. If you just take care of the pennies, pounds will be saved. If you don't care for the little things daily crossing your mind--thinking evil of others, seeing evil in others; talking, hearing about it--they, after all, will affect you.
Once there was a rishi living in a jungle. A king went to the jungle to hunt. He found the hut of the rishi and entered it to ask for some water. He had a bow and arrow, and he thought, "Perhaps, instead of taking it home, I will keep it here." He said, "Rishi, I will leave it here, and when I come back, I will take it with me."
The rishi said, "No, no, don't leave it here." "No, no," the king said, "I think you won't mind it." "All right," said the rishi, "Let it remain here."
So the king left the bow and arrow there. Now, the rishi was a rishi. How it affects, I tell you! He would go by the place where it stood and muse, "What is it? A bow and arrow." Then he would walk on. Once, twice, thrice a day, when he passed by, his attention fell on those two things. Then one day he thought, "Well, let me see what it is, after all." He took it and tried out how it worked. He became a hunter!
If you see things like that, be very cautious. A man who has occult powers can live among the snakes, and the snakes' poison won't affect him. But any man who has not got that occult power is bitten and suffers. That is why I sometimes say, "Behave. Be very cautious." Had the rishi not allowed the king to leave the bow and arrow there, he would have been safe.
But the daily passing by and thinking, "What is it? What is it?" went to make an impression, until he eventually thought, "Let me see what it is." And he became a hunter.
If you care for these very small things, you will see for yourself what you will become. Iqbal, a great poet, who has passed away now, said, "Why did prophet Moses go to Mount Sinai to seek God? Did he not know that God is after finding some man on earth? He is looking for us." We are not men, we are beasts in men. By appearance we have the man body, but in our habits, our nature, our everything, we are like beasts, like animals; and even worse than that: we are even worse than serpents biting. So, God is in search of a man who is a man. Why should a man go to the mountains? God is searching for us. He is going all around looking for us, but He can find no one.
Baba Jaimal Singh, our Grand-Guru (the Guru Master of our Master), was living by the river Beas. He went to the Murree mountains and passed by our Master when He was busy in His work as an S.D.O. (a Sub-Divisional Officer in the military Engineering Service). One woman disciple was along with Baba Jaimal Singh, and Baba Jaimal Singh told her, "I've come for this man." And the disciple said, "He has never accosted You, never greeted You." And Baba Jaimal Singh said, "Yes, He will."
Even the Masters are seeking for somebody who is a man. After all, it is no easy Job.
The very soul trembles on becoming a Master. It is a selection by God; with His help only can it be carried on. Never dream of that, I tell you. Be disciples.
The one who becomes a true disciple is sometimes selected for a job. These things that appear to be very trifling are very important.
For that purpose, the diary system has been introduced. Perhaps you have not appreciated the true meaning of it. If any of you have been given something to start with, and you live up to it, why don't you progress? You must have gone on for years now--some for eight years since I was here last--and no new things have come up. Some even had better experiences before. Then, where do you stand? How many of you have gone to the third plane? I don't think you are all lingering on the astral plane. What is the reason why? Because we don't live up to what we are told. We simply make allowances; in our zealousness we think, "We are seniors; we are good speakers," this and that. No, no, no. We cannot deceive God. Perhaps this is the only thing I have to tell you that will be of your use: to abide by these words in your heart and live up to them.
Just keep your diaries. Be regular in your meditations. Like a child going to his father every morning, always be in His lap. It does not mean that you do not do your work. Do your work. Do that which has been allotted to you by God in order to look after your families, your children, etc. Then help others.
So this is what is needed. Don't forget your own Self. It is the grace of God only.
Once there was a Master who initiated a King. And the King was always boasting: "I'm a king; I'm a great man; I'm this; I'm that. I'm very wonderful; I can do this; I can do that." Of course, Kings can do anything they like.
So what happened? One day the Master told him, "Look here; what is your value? Have you ever considered it?"
"Oh yes, I'm of very much value. I'm worth tons of gold and emeralds. I'm a King; at my beck and call a whole army of troops is there, ready to fight."
"All right," said the Master. "Will you permit me to do something and let you know what your real worth is?"
"Then, all right. Lie down. Simply relax yourself. Close your eyes, and don't mind what I do."
What did he do? The King lay down, relaxed with his eyes closed, and the Master took him by the legs and slung them around his neck and carried him around in the street calling: "Look here, anybody! This is the king's corpse, his dead body. Will anybody purchase it, for one dollar, a half dollar?" He came down to one penny, even a half penny. Whoever saw it said, "Oh, this so-called Guru has killed the king! We'll all be caught." They all fled away in fear. Even for a half penny no one wanted to purchase the body of the king. He brought the king back: "Well, do you know what your worth is please? Have you heard it with your own ears?"
It is God's grace that gives you some worth. Otherwise, what worth have you got? If you die, nobody keeps your body for more than two days--it will give a bad odor.
So it is His grace that we are working in the body, it is His grace that we have got something to know God, it is His grace that we have been put in the body. Even if we have made some progress on the way, it is His grace; and the grace of Whom?--God working through the Master, not God living in the heavens. Mind that, be a good servant. Whoever really becomes a good servant, in the true sense of the word, becomes a Master.
These are my few words. God knows whether I will come again or not: it is in His hands. But if you live up to this, you will never be left alone, and God will help you. Convey these, my words, to whomever you meet. Love one another, that's all. I think if a father sees his children in an all-loving embrace, he will be pleased--even to hear about them. At least I am pleased. Before I came I was not so pleased as I am now on leaving. You have a more loving attitude, and I wish you to progress still more. Love beautifies everything, that's all. If there are any shortcomings anywhere, realize that each one has his shortcomings: forgive and forget. That's the only thing we can do.
I tell you, as my Master loved me, I have loved you--for no compensation, but to do the will of my Master. I wish you would live up to what you are told to do, that's all. These words are coming out of my heart. If you just abide by them, you will progress wonderfully. God never leaves anyone alone. Christ said, "I shall never leave thee nor forsake thee until the end of the world." Bodies do leave; but that God Power working at the human pole does not leave.
So, with these best wishes I would like to depart; but my wishes will always be with you, and I will always be hearing from you.
And if loving thoughts are radiated to me there, I'll simply be too pleased. If any father sees his children loving one another, I think the father is pleased. If you are obedient, so much the better; if you surrender yourself, all is yours, I tell you. This is the greatest thing, and it starts from keeping a diary, I tell you. Don't underrate the diary; it means something. There are those of you who have no time for it; but like a hard taskmaster, don't spare yourself. If you do this, one and all, you will find change in your lives. You will see change for your own selves. This is, I think, all that I expect of you. It is in your own interest and earns my pleasure for nothing. Our Master used to say, "Don't be doing civil disobedience and lie down and let everybody carry you while loading you on cars and trucks. You should also help." That is helping the Master, too, in a way. The task becomes easier. What does He want to give you? God--I tell you honestly; but you're not ready to have It. He will give you something, but you don't appreciate it. My best wishes have always been with you and remain with you, with God's grace--the God working through my Master.
Param Sant Kirpal Singh