And now I wish I could really describe him to you or tell you of my impressions. But did you ever try to describe a beautiful sunset? … No king could be more graceful and dignified, and yet that dignity is so tempered with sweet humility that one is drawn to him. His voice is low and clear as silver bells. His smile is extremely gracious and one can see that his heart holds loving kindness for all. He is to be seen and not described.
Julian Johnson, With a Great Master in India
Perhaps very few can talk about what transpires in the heart of a disciple when he is present before his Master – the enigma which unfolds in the realm of silence.
Our relationship with the Master can never be described in words, perhaps because he plays a role different from anyone else we know. It is a mystery how someone so unknown to us, feels the most familiar, and knows all that we hold in the deepest chambers of our hearts. Maulana Rum says:
Every inch of you does he know, for kept he the secrets of God.
Daryai Lal Kapoor writes about the Great Master:
Although our karmas were as clear to him as the contents of a glass jar, he would never speak of our shortcomings, even indirectly. He took care not to hurt anyone’s feelings.
Heaven on Earth
Great Master would say, “Saints never look at our failings. If they did, who would come to them? Every soul is virtuous. Our eyes and heart are at fault if we fail to see a person’s worth, for God himself sits in every human heart.”
With faults and sins so grave, we run to be in his presence because there is no fear of judgment. Our human condition craves approval, craves appreciation. We often desperately need to see the good in ourselves. There are many things in life that warrant our time, help, attention and we just cannot deliver. Or there may be people we have cheated or lied to, and we carry all this baggage from our relationships. It makes it so hard to look these people in the eye. But when we are in the Master’s presence, no matter how sinful we are, no matter how disobedient we have been, all we receive in the gentleness of his eyes is his love. Those eyes reflect all the best that he sees in us and somehow every wrong is made right, every confession is heard, and every tear is dried.
Thousands of people have had the opportunity to ask their Master questions at the Dera or in their respective cities. Those who have had this opportunity will say that the Master has understood their heart’s woe, even before they have fully understood it themselves. Nothing is actually said and nothing is actually heard, and the dialogue is over before it even starts.
The Master’s answer (to the question), did not appear to be based on theory, speculation or reasoning. Rather I felt that he could see with his inner eye the condition of my mind and soul. And so his answer was based on direct perception. He was speaking factually. I am firmly convinced that the Master saw not only my previous lives but also the road ahead of me.
He knew my questions even before I asked them and he answered them in his own way. No words were needed.
Adventure of Faith
When the Master glances at us, in that moment, there is no one else. In that one fortunate glance, our heart is etched on to his palm like a magnet. Something happens. He inspires us with one glance, with one smile and sometimes with no words. We are like the Ramonda Serbica, the Serbian Phoenix Flower, which lives in the most unfavourable conditions. Whenever this plant is absolutely dry and on the verge of death, with just a few drops of water, in a matter of moments the flower can spring back to life. Every time we sit before him, this mystery unfolds, leaving us unburdened and ever so grateful.
In that silent dialogue, there is a space that feels like home. Nowhere do we feel more secure, more protected, more relaxed, and the most loved. He meets us in a place where we fully understand and have been fully understood. For this reason, we permit ourselves to be true, to be real. And only in this space can we, in time, come to experience our truth. Julian Johnson sums it:
How has he become my very life? It is a deep mystery, but an infinite joy. And how has this heavenly mystery come about in my life? It is so out of the beaten paths of ordinary experience. All who have walked the path know well, that in all the world there is no relation so close and so sacred as that between Master and pupil. There is no relation so crowned with the frenzy of divine joy. When the disciple feels that every ray of light that radiates from the Master carries with it streams of life itself, he must love him.
With a Great Master in India