No. 36, February 1977
To begin his birthday celebrations on December 10, 1976, Guru Maharaj Ji took a helicopter ride. While he was cruising above the Malibu coastline, premies assembled a huge box on the grounds of his residence and decorated its sides with birthday cards and its roof with a sign reading "Happy Birthday, Lord". Maharaj Ji saw it on his return, and opened up the box to discover the surprise gift of an Aston Martin car, bought from birthday money sent by individual premies throughout the United States. Later on in the day, when 1,000 premies had taken the shuttle bus up the residence hill to a party featuring balloons, clowns, music, jugglers, and Hans Pal popping out of a cardboard birthday cake, Guru Maharaj Ji thanked everyone for his present and gave the following satsang throughout the afternoon:
Thank you, thank you very much for coming, and I'd like to thank you very much for a nice gift. Most definitely it was an incredible surprise. First I saw this helicopter come, and I thought it was the police station: sometimes they come and they make sure everything is okay. I looked at it, and it wasn't the police, and it started to land over there, and I said, "Wow, life is full of surprises." And then we went for a ride, and that was nice, and then we landed again, and there was this box all set up here. I opened it, and there was this beautiful car. Well, I didn't expect it, that's for sure. That was the trick I pulled on Raja Ji the last birthday he had, so I didn't think anybody was going to do that to me, but it was really beautiful.
A lot is going to happen. I just returned from the tour, from the conferences that were scheduled, and a lot has happened in Europe and in South America. I don't like to say that it's all going to change drastically, but it is going to change, because our experience of Knowledge has changed, and since everything is based upon us, when we change, then everything starts to change. It's like when the earth shifts from the bottom, everything else starts to change around it, and the point is, that the only change that we ever need in our lives is to come back home. And as we come back to satsang, service, and meditation, we don't need these high-faluting changes, jumping from one corner of the stream to the other corner of the stream; it's just not meant for us. Because we are premies, and the more simple we can be in our practice of satsang, service and meditation, the more a path can open up for us, the more beautiful the whole process can become.
A lot of people suddenly decided to move out of the ashram. Well, that is up to them, but a lot of people also started to feel that they're stranded in this world, because maybe they weren't quite ready to move out of the ashram. Besides the fact of ups and downs and highs and lows, there's only one very important thing that we all have to understand and recognise, and that is that we have to come back home again. If we cannot come home again, and we have gone too far off, it's just not worth it. We have to come back home again, we have to come back to satsang, service, and meditation, and we have to come back under the shelter of Guru Maharaj Ji, because that's about the best shelter there is.
I have experienced that in my life, and I think other premies have experienced that in their lives, and it's all really beautiful, because slowly everything is starting to happen where premies can come back to that home. Premies are starting to see that road that leads back to home. Because that is what we are, we are satsang, service, and meditation. This life was made for that very purpose, and when we forget that purpose, it all seems too lost, it all starts to seem as if it's not worth it. But it is all worth it, because we have the Knowledge, through which we can conquer the three most pleasureful things in this life: the experience of satsang, the experience of service, and the experience of meditation.
Only through Knowledge can that happen. And I'd like to thank you again, and you'll probably be seeing me in more satsang programs around the United States. I don't think I'd like to drive this thing (the car) all the way to the programs, but I'd like to thank you very much for the gift. I was a little surprised, I didn't know how this was possible, but it was brought to my knowledge that all the premies pitched in for it, and it's just so beautiful. Because a couple of days ago I was talking to John Miller and I was saying, "Miller, we have everything, but if it is from the effort of premies, if it's from the togetherness of premies, then it's all worth it. But if it isn't the togetherness of premies, if it isn't with love, it's not worth it." And I have seen, not this particular car, but this particular model, and it was like, "Yeah, it's a nice car," and so on and so forth, but I'm really glad that premies were able to come together and do some service in this manner. Thank you very much.
Someone asks what happened at the African program
Oh, the African program - there's a premie really interested in Africa, I think we should get him a ticket together - a one way ticket that is - and send him to Africa. Oh, it was really beautiful, wherever it was. I mean, this is a beautiful spot, you know? I haven't seen somewhere more beautiful than this. Of course, once in a while the Santa Ana winds come and clean the air, but so far as beauty is concerned the only beauty that there was in South Africa, that I think there was in South Africa, was premies, you know? That was the real beauty.
The real beauty in the whole place was when the program started to happen. To me, at least, there is no real separation between us. We all come from the same point, we all the same way, and so it was really beautiful because it was all happening, and it was happening really beautifully. Everybody was coming together and there was so much love, so much satsang, so much understanding.
Someone asks a question
Satsang, service, and meditation. That's what I've been saying. Love and understanding. You see, a lot of people have concepts about Guru Maharaj Ji. But Guru Maharaj Ji is there for one purpose and that is to supervise the process of satsang, service, and meditation. There are three or four ways of looking at it, but the real way of looking at it is as a car and a driver. It doesn't matter how perfect the car can be, you need a driver for it, and Guru Maharaj Ji is the driver of that car. It doesn't matter if you buy a thirty thousand dollar automobile, if you don't have a driver for it, it's not worth
The Golden Age
anything. I mean, you can push the accelerator down, put it in gear, and let it go, and before you know it, it will crash. Guru Maharaj Ji is that driver who we really need, because he supervises that process.
Knowledge is infinite, and we finite, so we need a bridge, we need a translator, who is infinite and finite at the same time, who can really bring us together, and that is Guru Maharaj Ji. In my realisation of Knowledge, I know that if it hadn't been for Guru Maharaj Ji, Knowledge alone wouldn't have done wonders for me, because the wonders that Knowledge was doing already existed - I was alive! After that it was going to go nowhere. I was alive, I was breathing, playing around and so on, but when Guru Maharaj Ji came into my life, everything became different, it became real. I couldn't lose the importance of Guru Maharaj Ji at that point and say, "Well, maybe I can just do it on my own." Because it's literally impossible to do it.
A lot of people have tried to do it, and a lot of people have tried to do it the other way around, without going through Guru Maharaj Ji at all, just going back to nature. Trying to be tuned with Knowledge in this whole life, but I can tell you one thing, it doesn't work. They have wasted their lives completely. That's just not blunt advice, because Guru Maharaj Ji is here, and that's what makes it real for all of us. Because we can all come together and have that huge gap covered.
It's like we're swimming, and then we get to the other edge of the river, it's very steep, and we can't get out of it ourselves. The river starts to flow very hard, and we need somebody at that end to pick up our hands and to pull us up, and that's Guru Maharaj Ji. That's one person who can advise us constantly as far as the currents are concerned, where to go and what to do. Guru Maharaj Ji is like a radar in the fog. I don't want to get into how miserable everything is, because we all experience that differently in our lives, but we know that there is something missing. Our problem is absence, not presence.
I don't think mind exists. I don't think mind indicates a presence of something, mind indicates an absence of something. It's like darkness. What is darkness? It is not a presence, it's an absence of sun, it is an absence of light, and in the same way the problems that we have in our daily lives are an absence. What is fog? It's an absence of sight, and when we cannot have that sight, then we are in fog, and then we need a radar. A radar that can show us exactly where the problems are. From there we have to go on, from there we have to begin. And we need that constantly, it's not like you look at the radar once in your life, switch it off and say, "Bye-bye," and start to do it yourself. There's a lot more to it. It's not all so Simple Simon, but you can make it very simple in your lives. You can make it very beautiful in your lives if you want to, if you try it the right way.
A lot of people say, "Well, I have put a lot of effort into Knowledge." Yes, that is true. If I want to empty this pond out, I can try very hard by taking a little piece of cotton and dipping it in the water, and then taking it over and squeezing it. I can be here all night long doing that, or I can be here for months, but that is not the way to do it. It's just not a matter of trying hard, it's trying hard in the right way, and that's what we have to understand. Anybody can try hard. A poor racoon tries very hard when he gets caught in a trap, he bites his leg off. That's the right effort. What if he tried to bite the thing that has caught him? So you have to try in the right way, you have to try in the right direction. If you don't try in the right direction, it's no good, it's useless, and that's what a lot of premies feel in their lives. I don't say that they haven't tried, I say they have tried, but not in the right way. It's like trying to dig a big ditch with a little leaf. It's not the right way to do it.
So I hope we can have more birthdays. It's too bad there's only one a year. It seems a lot better having all the premies here; it makes it more exciting, makes it more beautiful than just having it Simple Simon. This community and the communities all around Los Angeles are pretty lucky. It's not worth it when you go out every morning and get caught up in traffic jams, but maybe it pays off after a little while.
Someone says, "Maharaj Ji, we don't need a birthday to have a party."
Oh, that's right! Well, let's see what happens. Let's see what we gave got, or what I have got in store for you in 1977. A big surprise. I'm not telling you what it is, it's a surprise. It's very big.
"Does it float?"
Oh yeah, it floats very high. Are all the premies here? How many buses are there?
Someone asks a question
That's what satsang is all about. If there wasn't satsang then I guess it would be very hard to explain to somebody what this Knowledge is all about. I've travelled a lot, and I've spoken to a lot of people. To me, everybody needs Knowledge, and everybody wants Knowledge. The simple fact is that they don't know, and if they could somehow find out that the thing they want is called Knowledge, and happiness and Truth, there wouldn't be much of a problem.
When you talk to people, they don't disagree with you on the fact that they need true happiness, or, if you don't put it that way, that they need Truth in their lives, or that they need to merge with that oneness. They start to disagree when you say "Knowledge," because they don't understand what Knowledge is now, but that's the name of the game. You have to give them satsang, or try to make them understand what the necessity of life is. The real necessity of life. There's a lot of other necessities of life, but those necessities are based upon one basic necessity, and if that one basic necessity can be fulfilled, then there won't be any problem fulfilling the other necessities of life. When the one necessity of life is unfulfilled, then all the necessities of life are unfulfilled.
So I think if we start to load now, you guys will be able to get back home before sundown, or maybe with sundown. When we have a big program for all the Los Angeles community and around Los Angeles, then everybody can come together and sing Arti. Huh? Are there people from Miami here? You guys are not supposed to come! There's nothing much more to say. I guess if we have questions and answers we can get into that, but that's a bogus thing to me. I've already been through that once, and mind is like dirt, the more you kick it, the more it comes up.
A question about Durga Ji
Where is she? Ladies and gentlemen, would you please welcome Marolyn.
I wanted to express my happiness that all of you came, that we're all here, and sharing the darshan of our Lord, because it's an incredible thing to be in this world and to have this Knowledge and to know Guru Maharaj Ji, to see him, to be with him, and to play with him. There are no words to describe it. I've been feeling so much this birthday and I know it's by Maharaj Ji's grace. The more we put into it the more we get out of it, and it's the same way with Knowledge. The more we put into this Knowledge, the more he gives us back, and to me the most incredible thing is to experience the love of Guru Maharaj Ji, to experience love for our Lord, because he is our Lord. Hopefully, we're experiencing the same thing, and that's beyond words, it's very, very precious, and I feel that in our hearts we all should thank Guru Maharaj Ji very much for everything, but most of all, for himself, because in giving us himself he's given us everything. Thank you for coming.
Guru Maharaj Ji:
And I'd like to thank you again for the wonderful surprise, the wonderful gift. I'd like to thank you for coming here, and I hope you had a nice time. I think it was short but sweet. At the first possible opportunity, maybe we can come together, on a scale where all the premies can be benefitted. So, I guess that wraps it up for today; I don't know what's going to happen tomorrow, but that wraps it up for today.
And look around you, you know? There's two ways of looking at it. There is this world out there, as the world, and then there's Guru Maharaj Ji's world, and it is different, there's no doubt about it. Guru Maharaj Ji's world is a lot different, it's a lot more beautiful. Because the beauty in Guru Maharaj Ji's world is ever-existent, ever-constant.
The beauty of this world deteriorates. You see these eucalyptus trees, you see these bushes? They were green, they were super green at one time, but Santa Ana'a winds have blown cold, and they have shed their leaves. That's the way things are in this world, and that's nature, maybe that's a little more constant, but out there: what is world? Earth is not the world. It's more. It's society, the understanding of people, and craziness to some extent. Our world just doesn't consist of what we want. But most definitely Guru Maharaj Ji's world consists of happiness, of constant rhythm. We have to decide which one we want to be in. We don't have to sacrifice the other world, but a lot of people who are in Guru Maharaj Ji's world are sometimes aliens, or feel very alien to that world, because they keep going back and forth. Then there are some people who feel very native to that world, and then there are other people who feel very native to this world, and feel very alienated to Guru Maharaj Ji's world. To come to this world, we have to do a lot. To be in Guru Maharaj Ji's world, we have to do a lot in one way, but it's very simple, because it's surrender, it's love, it's understanding, it's satsang, service and meditation, and it's true surrender of mind. That makes us eligible to be in Guru Maharaj Ji's world. Not as an alien, but as a permanent citizen of that world.
So if you want to qualify for Guru Maharaj Ji's world, you have to have a lot of surrender, a lot of understanding, a lot of love, a lot of meditation, a lot of service, and then you'll be issued with a passport. Not a passport-passport, but a passport that you could see. Nobody else has to see that passport, but you could see it. You could touch that passport, you could feel that passport. It is real. It is more real than the passport that you possess right now.
When you travel there is such a bureaucracy involved in getting visas and going from one part to another part of this world. Why? I don't understand it. We all want freedom, we all want love. We all want understanding in this world, and if that's what everybody claims they want, where did all this bureaucracy come from? That's what this world produces. This is the smog of this world. One of the pollutions of this world is bureaucracy, but in Guru Maharaj Ji's world there is nothing like that, because atoms are spread much further apart, and so there's less possibility of friction. So, it is our decision. If we want to be in Guru Maharaj Ji's world, we can be in Guru Maharaj Ji's world constantly. Not as an alien, but as a permanent citizen. I told you what it takes to be one, so let's tighten our belts - not too tight, they might break - but let's tighten them at least, and come together, and really try to understand what we are all about.
Because, we go off into this world every day, but do we realise for one second how precious this Knowledge is? We look at paintings, we look at glorious things. What about the thing that generated those? We're so active in everything except the thing that we should be active in, and that is Knowledge. It has been given to us. It is very precious, but we have to understand it individually.
So, there's a lot more to say and there's a lot more to do in this world. I just hope that our purpose can come true in this world one day. Because it really needs to. The more and more you look at it, the more and more you see the necessity of it coming true. And it's us. It all falls down on us. We can make it possible. Thank you very much. See you later. And I love you.