EXCERPTS OF SATSANG BY BOB MISHLER, INTERNATIONAL PRESIDENT OF DLM, TO DEPARTMENT HEADS IN DENVER
…Over half of the entire operating budget of Divine Light Mission comes from ashram premies alone, after you deduct what it costs for them to maintain themselves.
So you begin to see that over half of the share of support of this entire movement is on one out of every sixty premies in the United States. And then you begin to understand why the people in your departments, some of them are very overworked, and some of the ashram premies just feel like they're really really tired. Because they've been carrying, one out of every sixty premies has been carrying the burden of over half of the support of the entire movement throughout the past year or so.
And without the additional support of maybe ten individuals over the past year, who have given large inheritances to Divine Light Mission, we wouldn't have been able to make it. We wouldn't have been able to do the things that we've done. And so what it'scomes down to is that a remarkably few premies are really supporting Divine Light Mission; that its a relative handful in the midst of a multitude that are taking the responsibility to support this movement.
And this is a startling fact in the sense that immediately we recognize that something's lacking. And to me, the thing that's lacking is a thing that I may say over and over again in this meeting here today, and the point of it is so that all of us understand it clearly and can communicate it on to others. The thing that's lacking is a practical means of dedication in the lives of most of the premies. …and without this, there's going to be frustration in their life.
…We can see that it hampers the progress of the movement, in that if more people were supporting it we would be able to do a great deal more, --that the burden wouldn't be such a strain on the people who are taking the responsibility to shoulder it at this time. But in another whole way, in a nother whole vein, because here in this organization it's not like the army or something like that. This movement is the movement to bring peace in the world; this is the movement, for those who participate in it, to attain salvation. …and this is the whole reason why all of us came to Guru Maharaj Ji in the first place.
…And so, even though our essential nature is the same, and a lot of things that we'll do in this physical world will be identical, …there'll be a lot of things that'll be unique about the way that we manifest this life--the way we express the Grace of Guru Maharaj Ji in our growth and development.
It's not so much the lifestyle that we live; the importance of it is whether there is a flow of dedication in our life. Because we've seen that simply moving into the ashram isn't necessarily dedication. And not living in the ashram isn't a sign that a person isn't dedicated.
…Guru Maharaj Ji says if you really love someone, you're willing to do for them. And if you just say, "I love you, I love you, I love you," what does that come to? It comes to nothing. But if you really love someone, you're willing to do something for them.
…As the Holy Name is constant, as your meditation is supposed to become constant, no matter what external activity is taking place, everything in your life has to be constant, and your flow of dedication in your life has to be constant.
And what is it that's going to make that possible for most people? They have to have a practical, tangible, substantial way of supporting this movement. And the only way that they're going to do that is to first of all, take the step of supporting it financially; that is to commit themselves.
We make all kinds of historical parallels to all the great religions of the world and how they originated from a Perfect Master. Well, it's interesting that in all the great religions of the world down through history, that there also was the practice of tithing. That, if you were really supporting the work of that religion, you were, without question, before doing anything else, supporting it financially.
…And now, it's like, what is it that's going to make the difference between an ordinary man just going off and working to feed his stomach, to provide shelter, and to turn that same job that he's doing now into worship of Guru, into "Work is Worship", into a flow of dedication, into service? It's just a simple change in his mind. Because again, it's our minds that are off; it's not so much the activity that's going on in the world. There is a lot of activity that's going on in the world that's wrong; but the reason that that's there is because of our minds--our minds are off.
And if we can just change our minds to understand the importance of dedication, then that job can turn into service. By first of all knowing that like the top ten percent belongs to Guru Maharaj Ji. Any man can take that first step; any woman can take that first step, and change that aspect of their life into the service of Guru Maharaj Ji by giving that ten percent. And then, beyond that, do whatever they can in terms of supporting the service, the work of Guru Maharaj Ji within the context of the limitations that they have.
…Guru Puja isn't just coming and ooing and aaahing like Guru Maharaj Ji was the Beatles or some superstar, or some moviestar. Guru Puja means to be committed to serving, is to know who Guru Maharaj Ji is, to be able to recognize Him by the effect that He's having in the world; is to be able to see, what the course of His activity is manifesting in the life of humanity.
…The paradox of this is that in order to really be free, we have to don the yoke of responsibility. In order to experience that liberation in life, we have to accept all of the responsiblities that the Knowledge of the secrecy of life entail. And that's how we attain freedom. You know, but as long as we avoid that, actually we are running around in the cage. And the yoke is the taking of that responsibility, shouldering of that burden, of what life entails--is the way to let ourselves out.
And that's something that's very difficult for people to understand. And the only way they can really understand it is to practically experience it. Is that that real freedom is found in completely surrendering one's self to what life really is. That we can't be free to live our life if we're not living it in harmony with what the aim of our life actually is.
…One thing that I've seen is that when you allude to something, when you hint at something, a lot of people miss it. And even when you tell people directly, especially when you tell them to give their money as the first step in practical dedication, they don't even hear:you the first time when you say it directly. Because that's such a difficult thing for them to hear. Because they see that yoke coming onto their shoulders. And they're conditioned to think that's the thing that's going to make them a prisoner; that's the thing that's going to make them a slave; that's the thing that's gonna take away their freedom. But it's just the opposite. That's the thing that's going to set them free from their own delusion that they're free already; that there's something to be gained in being disconnected.
Because it's not until we get ourselves connected that we really experience what life is. You know, what the meaning of life is, and can manifest our destiny in terms of fulfilling the aim of our human life, in the service of Guru Maharaj Ji. We have to surrender. And if we don't ever come to that point, and if we don't tell people over and over again--if we don't tell them directly--then we're doing them a great disservice, because we're not providing that satsang; we're not giving them the holy company that they require.
…So if we're gonna broaden the basis of support of Divine Light Mission, if we're gonna go forward, you know, this is entirely up to Guru Maharaj Ji. Surely none of us can look back into what we did that brought us to the point where we were worthy of receiving Knowledge. In fact Guru Maharaj Ji has said that none of us were worthy of receiving Knowledge. It's not a question of that. It's a matter of Grace.
And if the Grace has touched us in our life, then we should surrender to it and be completely embraced in bliss. And for the rest of the premies who have had that opportunity to be touched by the Grace, we have to tell them also that they sould surrender and allow themselves to be uplifted--completely embraced in that bliss.
And there are some very practical things that we can tell them to do in order to experience that. And I know that this transition that's taking place is up to Guru Maharaj Ji just how deep and how far and how wide the spread of Knowledge becomes. But if He's giving us the capacity to understand this point now, then it becomes obvious that there is some indication that He's trying to make devotion relevant to our lives right here in America in 1974. Not in 1975, in our imagination; but right here now in 1974. And not back 400 years ago in traditions that give people an excuse to live in the past, but right here, right now, in our life--at this moment. And we should take that indication; we should take that opportunity.
…Step one, is understand what dedication is. Dedication is surrender; that's when you let go. You let go and you give it to Guru Maharaj Ji, and you trust Him. You know, because unless you trust Him, how is He going to save you?