February 6, 1973
Published in Sant Bani Magazine, January-February 1994
A talk given at the ambrosial hour of the early dawn, about 5 a.m., on February 6, 1973 outside the Master’s House at Sawan Ashram to a group of approximately 5000 gathered to celebrate the Master’s Birthday. Reprinted from the April 1973 Sat Sandesh.
Silence is more eloquent than speech. What can be said in silence cannot be communicated through words. A man takes birth every day; he dies every night and is born in the morning. I have no horoscope with me, but they tell me that today is the date of my birth. But the real birth is that which ends the cycle of birth and death. Guru Nanak was asked by the Siddhas how he succeeded in ending that cycle; he said, “When I took my birth in the house of the Satguru, I was freed from the chain of birth and death.” What is it to be born in the house of the Satguru? When we rise above body consciousness and sit in His lap, that is to be born in the house of the Satguru. With that the unending cycle is ended. And [for me] that was on the day of Basant Panchmi (the fifth day of spring) in the year 1917; because Hazur Maharaj Ji used to meet me long before the actual physical meeting, in fact seven years before that. And the date of the physical meeting in 1924 was also the same — Basant Panchmi.
So I say to you, blessed is the day when we are born into the house of the True Master. And what is the real birthday of a man? The day he learns to rise above body consciousness. He can do it daily after that. All of you have had a practical demonstration of that. We take birth in the house of the Master; but we do not live there. Does one leave the house where he is born? When you rise above body consciousness you are in your true home. You may come out of it occasionally; but you should live there. That is the true birth.
So the real birth is that which should end the cycle of birth and death. This is the first thing about a birthday. Who is to be congratulated on this birth: The Master or the disciple? A teacher’s greatness lies in this: that all his students pass the examination. If all his students pass in the first division, the credit goes to the teacher. Isn’t it so? If they do not pass, then may celebrate his birthday, but they do not win his pleasure. So all you brethren who have been put on the way to the Beyond by the grace of Hazur Maharaj Ji deserve to be congratulated only if you pass, i.e., if you learn to rise above body consciousness. The Gurumukh rises above to his true home at will a hundred times a day. If you have not done that, all such birthday celebrations are useless.
So I always say to you, remember the lesson taught to you. Having taken birth in the house of the Master, you should live there. So, dear brothers, I say to you, sit in Bhajan regularly every day. Learn to rise above body consciousness. Unless you do that, there is no salvation, no ending of birth and death. The first birth is physical; the second is into the Beyond, into the Divine Plane of the Master. As Kabir says, Go ye to the Plane of the Satguru. The Satguru’s plane is not here; it is beyond the physical, astral and causal planes. But the way to it starts when you rise above body consciousness. If you really feel happy — I do not say you do not — you may give a sign of that by doing what I ask you to do: sit in Bhajan daily and keep the self-introspection diary. Do not take food for the body until you have given food to the soul — by contacting the God-into-Expression Power within. And for that, sadachar or true living is most essential. Without purity of life, one cannot rise above body consciousness. Truth is above all, but true living is still above Truth.
You have done all this lighting and decoration, and now you are sitting in the open in this bitter cold. The outer celebrations are all very well, if you take birth in the house of the Master and end the cycle of birth and death. It is all the grace of Hazur Maharaj Ji that you are all getting direct first-hand experience. East or West, wherever He sent me, it was through His grace that people got first-hand experience. When people outside India are getting so much benefit, our own countrymen should get still more benefit. This chasing and running after me is not love. Love teaches one to follow instructions, to obey. If you love me, keep my commandments. First you have to become a Gurusikh — a true follower of the Master — and not a mansikh — a follower of the mind. Says the Gurbani, The whole world follows the dictates of the mind; a rare sadhu follows the Guru. But they that follow the Guru transcend all barriers and limitations. Celebrating the day by lights and decorations may be all right from your level; from my level it is not. It will be all right from my level only when you take birth in the house of the Satguru.
When we take birth in His house, and our coming and going is ended, only then are we to be congratulated. And the Masters Who come to guide humanity are to be congratulated only when all those who go to Them do their duty and pass creditably. My Master used to say, “Please put in some effort on your part so that I do not have to carry each one of you on my shoulders. It will make the Guru’s task easier if you do your duty.”
We have to do our work during the day. When night falls, who can work? That is what Christ says: I must work the works of Him that sent me, while it is day — that means when he was alive — for the night cometh, when no man can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world. Help the Master in His mission. The time for a spiritual revolution has come. It will arrive only when we lead a pure and chaste life. That will require some effort on our part. Have no fear; be true disciples of the Master and not of the mind; and then become a Gurumukh or mouthpiece of the Master. All these things I have said before; this one lesson is enough if you follow it. Do something now, when the sun is shining; you won’t be able to do anything after sunset. At present you are alive, and the Master is also in the physical body. Do not fritter away this opportunity. Bread and water are food for the body; reading books and exercising the mind is food for the intellect; and contacting the God-into-Action Power within is food for the soul Soul is a conscious entity; it can find sustenance only through contact with the Ocean of All Consciousness — God — Who is the Bread of Life and the Water of Life.
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