Who Knows Best?
My son, a bright young lad, and I often have long conversations about life. When he was younger he used to say to me, “I go to satsang because you take me, but when I get older I’ll decide if I want to go to satsang or not.”
In response, I’d ask my son, “Do you think you’re the one in control, that you’ll decide whether you’re going to satsang or not?”
And he would adamantly reply, “Yes, of course!”
One Sunday, a chain of events took place that changed my son’s thinking. Alone at home and still in bed half-asleep, my son heard the house telephone ring non-stop but, as is common for our children, he chose not to answer it. So it wasn’t until the ringing from the house phone switched to his mobile that he thought, “Oh this must be important, I’d better answer it.”
On the other end of the call was my older brother, a builder, who was in the midst of renovating our bathroom. He said, “I’m looking for your parents as I need to collect the tool box that I left at your house. Can you ask them to bring it to satsang, please? This will save me time as I need to fix a leak at a friend’s house.”
My son said that his parents were still in Haynes Park.
My brother said, “But I’ve just heard a rumour that Baba Ji is coming to our centre” The conversation ended.
My son looked at the clock, and it was 9:50 a.m. Jumping out of bed, he quickly washed, dressed, and left the house in ten minutes flat.
Twenty minutes later, he’d arrived at the satsang centre, and was seated near the door at the back of the small school hall. He looked around for any hint of a surprise visit from Baba Ji but everything seemed normal. As the centre’s secretary walked past, my son scrutinized him, searching for any signal of a surprise visit from Baba Ji. With no giveaway clues from the secretary, my son remained none the wiser.
Suddenly, Baba Ji entered the hall and, passing my son, walked straight to the stage.
There were a lot of elderly people in the local sangat, many of whom found it difficult to walk without the use of a walking stick. Sitting close to the microphone, they all took the opportunity to ask Baba Ji questions. Nor did my son miss such an opportunity.
Very excitedly, my son told me, “Mum, the microphone was right next to the stage, Baba Ji’s face was so close to mine!”
Our Master often says that if everyone’s desires were to be fulfilled, there would be chaos in the world. On the day he visited our local centre, instead of going there as we usually do, we attended satsang in Haynes Park because my husband hoped that Baba Ji would be there. By contrast, my son hadn’t planned on attending satsang – anywhere. What prompted him to change his mind about spending a lazy Sunday morning in bed?
This small, mundane incident illustrates just how little control we have over our own destiny. Most of the time we are either at the mercy of the whims of our minds or are reacting to our external environment. Very occasionally, the Lord, taking mercy on us, sends us a friend to wake us up. Instead of dozing, we become energized to begin the greatest adventure of all. As Maharaj Charan Singh stated in Spiritual Discourses, Vol. II:
It is not because of the saints, but because of our karmas, our way of thinking, that we do not understand anything…. No one can be blamed for this situation, for until the Lord showers his grace and mercy, how can anyone understand? In this world, everyone is blind, and it is only the Lord who has vision. Those who cannot see will only emerge from the darkness when the One who has sight chooses to call them and lead them into the light. Therefore only when the Lord showers his grace and mercy will we understand what is real in the world, and only then will our attention turn to worshipping the Lord.