8 December 1994 — Nobody Knows How to Surrender
Papaji reads a letter:
If it is possible, kindly give me a new name. Thank you a million for all you have done for me. And, beloved Master, I surrender at your lotus feet all my ignorance and egoism. By your grace, kindly give me your experience of Truth.
If you have done what you say you have done, your work is over. You say, ‘I surrender my ignorance and egoism at your feet’. If you had really done this, you would not have to beg for grace or beg me to bestow some experience on you. If you had done this, grace would have instantly embraced you. Nobody knows how to surrender. Everyone can say the words, but no one knows how to perform the act.
When I was at Ramanasramam somebody questioned the Maharshi about surrender. He asked, ‘You say that total surrender is a must for devotees who want to know themselves, but I can’t accomplish this total surrender. I have other responsibilities and duties. Even while I am here with you, my mind is often on the things that need to be done at home.’
Maharshi told him, ‘If you cannot accomplish total surrender, then partial surrender will do for now. Partial surrender can lead to a full surrender later.’
When your partial surrender matures into full surrender, you get the gift of grace from the teacher, but that blessing will only come when you have no doubts about the teacher. If you have faith in your teacher and faith in his teaching, surrender will happen in an instant. It will be like a mound of gunpowder coming into contact with a spark. The explosion is instantaneous, and after it is over, none of the gunpowder is left.
Partial surrender is what happens when you try to ignite wet wood. You can try to light it with a hundred matches but nothing will happen. It has to dry out slowly before it can ignite. If you try to burn wet wood, you just end up choking and coughing from the smoke.
You want a new name so I will give you one. When are you returning to Dubai?
Devotee: l return tomorrow via Bombay.
Papaji: I will give you· a name which means the gift of a Guru to his worthy disciple. I give you the name Prasad. Do you know what it means? It means ‘The gift of the teacher.’