You Need Reminding Only Once

You only have to be reminded once of who you are. You do not have to do anything. You do not have to read any book or listen to any cassettes or tapes. Just a reminder or even overhearing is enough.

I will tell you a story about a baby child. There was a king who was fond of hunting game. One day the queen also insisted on accompanying the king for the hunt. She decided to take her baby boy along with her and they started out. In the evening they pitched a tent in the forest so they could go out in the night, riding on an elephant to find some game. Generally hunting is done at night because all the animals go out for food then. The young prince was kept under the care of nurses, and sentries were posted outside the tent. So the king and queen and all their retinue went out the whole night hunting for game and returned to the tent at about ten next morning. The queen found that her son was missing.

In the night the nurses and the guards had fallen asleep. The boy had woken up, and not finding his mama lying next to him, he had walked out of the tent and deeper and deeper into the forest in search of his mama, the queen.

The queen came back and felt very sad. Everyone was exhausted; they had not slept the whole night. The queen said she would not even eat breakfast until she had seen her son again. Some said that he had been eaten by a wolf or a hyena, but the queen said that there would have been be marks of blood inside the tent or nearby. A search was mounted to find the bones. The queen said that if the bones were produced she could be sure that her son had been killed by a wild animal and she would accept the situation. They looked around the tent for a mile in all directions but they did not find any trace of blood stains. When they had to return to the capital, the king decided to send search parties in all four directions throughout the country and instructed them not to return until they found the boy, or at least a clue as to his fate. The parties were dispatched to console the queen. Months and years passed.

The boy was only three or four years old when he wandered into the forest dressed only in his underwear. A potter who lived on the farther side of the forest was collecting clay to make his pots and found the boy crying. His family had no child so they were very happy to find this child, a gift from gods — very handsome boy. They brought him home, gave him a bath and food and new clothes. The boy grew up with his new family, helping his foster father by collecting clay and bringing it home to help the family make the pots.

Twelve years passed and the teams of police were still searching for the prince. One search party was very thirsty so they stopped at a well where this boy was collecting water to take home to his family. The policemen saw the boy with a bucket and asked him for a drink. He gave them a cup of water and they were thankful. “What is your name?” they asked the boy. “My name is Junglee.” he replied. Junglee means forester in Hindi. The family gave him this name because they found him in the jungle.

The police were very shrewd. They asked him, “This is very rare name. We have never heard of anyone with the name Junglee before. Who are your parents?” “Our house is over there. We make pots. My parents are at home,” replied the boy. That was all he could say — he had forgotten all about his past. They were very suspicious about this boy’s name. They wanted to see his parents and find out why they named him Junglee. Seeing the police party, the parents became very afraid.

They asked the father, “Who is this boy?” “He is our son,” came the reply. “Is her your son? When did you beget him?” they asked.

So the potter told his story: “About twelve years ago I was walking to the forest to fetch some clay and I found this boy crying. I brought him home and for the last twelve years he has been with us. He is not our son but we have brought him up with great love and care because we didn’t have a child of our own.” So the policemen explained what had happened and who this child was, and the boy could overhear the entire conversation. Finally the police told the boy to come with them and they would take him to the king. The foster father was only crying out in fear, “It is not our fault, it’s not our fault. We have found the boy.”

At that point a party of boys arrived to call Junglee for a game which they had all left unfinished from the night before. “Come, Junglee. Come to finish the game we did not finish last night.” This boy had only overheard what the police had said to his father. “Do you know that he is the prince?” They had said, “He is the prince. Come with us and you will be rewarded. You have no reason to fear.” The boy only overheard the conversation, that is all, but he turned to his friends who were calling him to play and told them, “Shut up! I’ll have you arrested by my police! Keep quiet or I’ll have you arrested!” He became the prince by simply overhearing what had been said. He did not mediate to become a prince nor did he read any Sutra or any book. He simply overheard the truth of his situation from an authority and immediately he became the prince.

Once you hear from an authority that you are That, it is quite enough. You do not need anything more. Overhearing the words of an authorized source is enough to know the truth. But not all who hear the truth respond in the same way. Some are very sharp witted — they are like camphor touching a flame. All is over, nothing is left. They belong to a very superior quality of seeker — in going to the teacher, once they touch the word, the ego is destroyed like camphor.

Others are like firewood — they will also be gradually consumed. They belong to a second type of person, a middle quality. The third type also touches the fire and they take some time to burn and to become fire itself. Those are the ones who are postponing, taking their time. They will also become the flame itself but it will take some time because they are busy deciding. They are like children who make sand castles on the beach and get lost in their play till the high tide comes. Some wise children see that their mother is waiting and kick over what they have built with double pleasure and meet their mother before the high tide comes. Everything will be swept away by the high tide. Before it comes it is better to return home, your mother is calling. The third type is that category which does not move — they are like stone. If you put a stone in the fire nothing will happen. The stone will remain a stone — there will be no ignition.

There are these three categories, and all three categories are represented here in this Satsang, and in the world: tamasic, rajasic, and sattvic. All need to be free. Some have a burning desire of freedom — they need to meet a teacher only once. A perfect teacher and a perfect longing for freedom is all that is needed. Some who come to see me here say, “I have it! I got it! But now I cannot decide whether to leave you or whether to stay longer to stabilize what I have got.” There is no question of stabilization here. One glimpse of Atman is enough to give you light. One glimpse is more than enough.

A small window is enough to allow the rays of the sun to come into the room. A small hole is enough to allow you to expose your face to the sun. That light is quite enough to bring you home. Some people wait here and say they might lose what they have gained. I tell them that you will surely lose what has been gained. But how can you lose anything which you have not gained? When you have nothing in your pocket how can you lose it? You do not have to gain anything. You have come to lose all the burdens that you have been carrying on your shoulders since 35 million years.

There were once two teachers in China with ashrams about 500 miles apart. People used to travel from one ashram to the other. One teacher was preaching that it was necessary first to purify the mind like a mirror — to wipe the dust from the mirror so that you could see your face clearly. He had a great following. His students all got involved in cleaning the mirror for their whole lifetime. The other teacher, on the other side of the mountains, had a very different teaching. He did not say anything about any mirror to be cleaned. The first teacher did not understand: If the mirror is not cleaned, if there is dust on the mirror, if there are weeds in the lake, how can you see your own reflection? So he sent one of his closest students, who was supposed to have grasped the teaching, to go and find out what the other teacher was teaching. He had full confidence in this student. The man arrived in the other monastery.

The disciples of the second teacher came to the master. “Some people say this man is a very confident student, number one after the teacher. The teacher has sent him here to steal your teachings.” The master came to know about it so he called the man. A master has to speak to everyone, whoever comes.

The master asked this man: “Are you a spy?” “Yes, Master, I came as a spy. I was sent by my master,” replied the man. “But staying here with you I am no longer a spy of my master; I am your student, bless me. My master does not teach this teaching. He only says, ‘Go on rubbing the mirror.’ Now you tell me there is no mirror and no dust to alight on it. How simple! When there is no mirror where is the dust going to alight? This is a very beautiful teaching. Master, I am going to stay with you — please accept me. But first, please allow me one thing. My master is very beloved to me. I spent eighteen years with him. I am very grateful to him. I have some responsibility, some gratitude, some duty to pay off this debt. So let me go and give this teaching to my teacher.” The master said “Okay, you can go, you can go.” So the student returned to his old teacher.

“What is the teaching that he gives?” he was asked. “No teaching! No teaching! There are so many mirrors we have been trying to clean. They will never be clean. When there is a mirror there will always be dust to alight. This master asked me, ‘When there is no mirror where is the dust going to alight?’ Come with me, Master! He is a very beautiful teacher with no teaching at all!” The teacher and all his students came to see this master with no teaching.

We are here for Freedom. Our aim is freedom but we get lost in sadhanas, practices, yoga methods and reading books. Why did you come here? What was the purpose of wearing this human body which so precious among 8.4 million species, the highest temple? Once in 35 million years you wear this beautiful form — don’t waste it. You only need to be reminded like this prince, and you are the prince. You have been saying, “I am the body, I am the mind, I am the ego, I am the senses, I have objects to enjoy.” With this burden how can you face your own nature, how can you get on the throne? How can sit on the throne of the emperor if you have forgotten who you are? You have to be reminded; you do not need to perform any practices.

We speak here of Existence, Consciousness, Bliss. When are you not that? When was the time when you were not that? When will the time come when you will not be that? How can you lose Existence itself? How can you lose Consciousness? How can you lose Bliss? You have been lost somewhere else so you do not know who you really are.

19 May, 1992