Meditation RetreatThe Golden Age


And this is the way we should live our lives actually, is to go ahead and do it. And don't get stuck in trying to figure it out.'

Ira Woods gave this satsang to the Melbourne premie community at a meditation retreat on 17 February, 1976.

I guess it's one lesson over and over again, but we never seem to learn it enough: just how Guru Maharaj Ji's grace is always there for us. When we're in the deepest hole and we're really sinking low somehow we just cry out and scream, you know. You try to stand up against your mind, you try to stand up against all the negative drives that are inside of you, and you just let out that one wail,"Hey Daddy, don't forget me! Please remember I'm here!" And sure enough that finger comes. For myself I just experience this so much.

How many people are sincerely concerned about everybody in this world? Not many. You find maybe one religion, and the leader of that movement is interested in all the people of that religion. You find political leaders and they're interested in the people in their countries. But what leader in this world really has the interest of every human being on his conscience? Guru Maharaj Ji is the only one who sees the world in this way, as one world.

In Orlando, just before the festival, he had a meeting with us really early in the morning, and he said to me, "I don't consider myself an Indian. And that isn't because I'm ashamed that I was raised in India. But I have no idea of who I am. I don't have some concept of me. I'm nobody, I'm absolutely no-one. And because I'm no-one, I'm everybody and I'm everyone." Guru Maharaj Ji has no concept of himself. He is completely universal. And he sees everybody in the same way.

He sees everyone exactly the same way regardless of what they look like, regardless of where they came from, regardless of what they're doing. He sees the same thing everywhere. He sees human beings, he sees little children who need help. And he's there to give the help, he's there to give the guidance. He's there to really connect us with what we always wanted to be connected with. And he can do it, he's the guy that can do the job. He's got that power, and there's no doubt when you see him, that in actual fact he does have that power.

It's really so beautiful every-


Initiator Ira Woods

thing that's happening. Because very few people are receiving Knowledge these days, but it's really nice that now when a person receives Knowledge they understand what they are getting. Because Knowledge is something inside of them already. And maybe I've said this at every program that Knowledge is already inside of us. How many times have we heard that anyway? But it's something really to understand. It sounds really simple, but it is really profound. Really we received Knowledge the day we were born, that was the day we received Knowledge. And then we were revealed Knowledge at another time.

Then once this Knowledge is revealed to us, it's just like a cable car. In San Francisco they have cable cars, and the way they work is that there's a track that's constantly moving. When the car hooks on to that track then it gets pulled up the hill. And when it wants to stop it unhooks itself and it stops. And then it just hooks itself back up to that moving thing and so on. And there is a movement inside of us, there is a vibration inside of us. And when we hook onto that Holy Word then we start moving. And when we let go of that Holy Word we stop, we start slipping back a little bit, a little bit. Then we're going to hook ourselves up again.

And what we want to do is to hook ourselves on to that Word. We really want to hook ourselves into this Knowledge and really merge and understand who Guru Maharaj Ji is. What is that experience that really composes Guru Maharaj Ji? It's this thing we have to know, and when we know it we'll understand who he is because it's inside of us. That very same experience is inside of us. Only if we really look into that experience, really trying to experience as much as we can, can we have any idea who Guru Maharaj Ji is.

There's no harm in trying. There's no great terrible thing in trying, because it really brings us close. It really brings us very close. There is so little separation between us and Guru Maharaj Ji that he feels it. He really feels it, he really knows it. I can just tell story after story about these things. But the very beautiful thing is to experience this for ourselves and to see that this isn't a fairy-tale but this is something real. This is really true. There is a path in front of us and it's a very practical path, a very real thing. It's very


simple, very clear cut and the only thing that complicates it is this nutty mind.

Travelling on this path takes effort and it takes grace. It really does take grace. Because this world is so strong, so powerful. Your mind just gets caught in it a little bit, just a little bit, and every day it grows a little bit more. And that mind … the big bad wolf has nothing in comparison to this. This mind is so clever. It's like a wave. An impression comes into us and that wave goes way out and it starts coming back a month later, or years later and all of a sudden that wave hits.

When those waves hit us, is it powerful! At that time we're in the middle of a big storm, and we're just in a tiny little ship. We've got to do everything we can at that moment. That just doesn't mean that we get down on our knees and start praying to God, but we've got to hit that storm with everything we've got. And sure enough grace will be there if we scream loud enough. That finger is always stretched out to us - service, satsang, meditation, darshan - that finger is always there. You see there's two conditions with this mind that I've noticed. One condition is that a person is practising Knowledge, really sincerely practising and it just plays a trick. It says something and it has no meaning or anything, and we just happen to listen to it that day and we get freaked out. The mind says, "Boo!" and we go, "Oh …!", but everything's okay. But then there is the other condition and that's when the mind just possesses you, and then it's not going "Boo!", it's just saying your whole story. It's telling your whole life. Number one is what we're always hit with. Number two is what we've got to watch out for.

Number one there's no problem. Because if you carry on, if you're holding on to Guru Maharaj Ji's finger, the mind will go,"Boo, baa, blaa, blah!" and there's no problem. It's just making noises. It's like going into a fun house. You go into these spook houses and you're in this car, and things just come out and go, "Whooo", and things dangle in front of you, things snap on the side. All these things are happening, but you know you're not going to get touched. As long as you stay in that car.

And this is how the mind is as long as we are holding on. You look at it and say, "Very clever." It's just sort of amusing. And every now and then it makes a sound you have never heard before and that frightens us a little bit, but no problems, no problem at all. The problem is when we start slipping off that finger, that's when the problem starts. Because then the noises, and the spiders and everything become real. Then we're really lost in the spook house, and things pop out and they're deadly. All of a sudden daggers start popping out and all these things start happening: funnel-webs jumping all over the place; ferocious dogs on the side of the road. They're all there. It becomes real then.

Whenever we talk about the mind it's just a word a caution that's all. It isn't something that we go and we get frantic about. It's not truth, it's no problem. But if we're not doing service, if we're not doing satsang, and if we're not doing meditation and we're not getting Guru Maharaj Ji's darshan, problems will definitely come our way. There's no doubt about it. We're the ones holding on to that finger. The finger's there. The finger isn't holding on to us, it's just there. We're the ones that have to grab it. It's not going to grab us, it's just sticking out. And we've got to be super powerful to hold on to it.

You would imagine somebody's curious to know what's inside this Knowledge. Aren't you curious? Wouldn't you love to see what's there? Even little kids are curious, you give them little things and they start taking them apart. My sister used to do that. She'd put a note in the bathroom, fold it up very intricately and put on the top, "Private". And you'd be there in that bathroom and you'd pick it up and open it up, and it'd say, "You rat, how dare you read this note, you have no regard for anyone." It's like we're curious about all these other things - aren't we curious about this Knowledge? That's the biggest question of our lives. That's the whole thing we want to find out; this is our very purpose.

If we want to do the most in the time that we've got, this is the thing to have in mind; not to concentrate on the problem. Sure there are problems in our every day lives that we have to face. But isn't it beautiful that we know the purpose of this life now? Isn't it absolutely fantastic that we know what we are doing? Because all those other burdens and problems, they would only need one nuclear war to go away - less that that they take just the remembrance of the Holy Name and they go away. Because the whole problem is a problem of mind. The mind makes the problem. Sure everything's a problem if you look at it that way. Just talking is a problem because I've got to use some energy, and I've got to flatten my mouth and I have to do all those things. And my mind can really get into it and make it a problem, and think of everything that has to be done in order to speak. But you don't go around and think about it, you just go ahead and do it.

And this is the way we should live our lives actually, is to go ahead and do it. And don't get stuck in trying to figure it out because we'll never figure it out, there's no way. Really you can't figure it out. You've got to do it. Whatever is in front of us we have to do it. The one thing we definitely can't figure out is this Knowledge and that we have to do, that we have to get into, that we have to experience for ourselves. There's no way we'll ever figure this whole thing out.

And as for the problems in our personal everyday lives - what's the big deal? Deal with them. Take care of them, do something. Take care of them because look, you're alive, you've got life.

And here's the whole big beautiful world, this wonderful creation, the sun, the moon, the stars. One big big thing is the human body. And the second big big thing is Guru Maharaj Ji. That he comes and he reveals to us the mystery of this human life. And shows us the purpose of this human body.

You've just got to go ahead and do it. Not to try and figure where you are on the scale of awareness from one to a zillion and compare your self to this person, or that person, or what it says in the Gita or what it says in the Bible or what it says anywhere. It doesn't matter. What matters … there is a Chinese proverb which says, "Don't fear going forward slowly but fear standing still." It's standing still which we don't want to do, at least we should be going forward slow. ly. And it doesn't have to be slowly - it can be as quick as you want - but at least it should be forward, at least it should be in the right direction. This is what we want to do in this lifetime, we want to progress into that thing. Because who knows what's what' Who knows what's highest, what height is, what perfection is? Where do we fit compared to everybody else? Am


No. 28, April 1976

I experiencing less am I experiencing more? Because I'm sure a lot of people think about this. And like, don't think about it because that is holding you up. That stops us every time. Because the way to move forward on this path is just to clamp yourself into the cable car, and let it pull you, and then definitely you're moving forward.

Even to sit down for a half an hour you see the way that mind twists and turns and tries to take us. It's really incredible. But just day by day you keep working on it, working on it because it's a gradual process. Very gradual. Just how nature works.

Ants make patterns because just every day they're walking back and forth. They're doing it so much that they are just wearing everything out. And we can do the same to our ego, just by constantly meditating and really practising meditation, practising meditation, practising, practising, practising, practising, with no end in sight. Just keep doing it and doing it. Don't stop and look in the mirror and say, "Wow, I'm really glowing today. Now I'll go out and show off my glow, wait until I drop down into my mind, and I'll just get back into it again." But if you just keep on going and don't even stop and evaluate yourself, that is what surrendering is. Surrender to it completely because that is what surrendering is. Surrender to it completely because we want to go to the very end, we want to go as far as we can. If we put any limit on it, any limit at all, our mind will be right behind to get us and to gobble us up. Automatically attachment will go right back into this world. And that world is nowhere - we should pretty much know that already. That's the point of maturity we have to be at. That is what maturity is. To really know where this world fits in. To see how it isn't everything, that there is something more. To know and to realise that this Knowledge is the something more. That is what makes us completely mature. And this is what we have to understand: the value of this Knowledge for the rest of our lives. Meditate on this Knowledge. Meditate and serve. It's that simple.

Really, why do people have problems? Because they are attached to something in the world, that's all. This is the problem people have. I think, "Okay, this thing is giving me peace, this thing is giving me satisfaction." Then if I think I'm going to lose that thing, if it is in jeopardy, then I'm going to be upset, my mind is going to be disturbed.

Unless we can give up, unless we can detach our mind from this world, we can't even do meditation. All we can do is sit in yoga positions and that's about it. First our mind has to be detached - detached from the fruits of all action, which means we go ahead and we do something and that's it. We leave it. But usually, we carry everything with us everywhere we go. We carry it right into meditation and then we sit for hours with everything that we have carried over from the whole day, and days and weeks and months and years of our lives. And it is not until we give these things up that we have made that true detachment. Because detachment isn't the way people think - giving up everything, and doing this. Some of that is necessary. Some of that is definitely, definitely necessary and helpful. But still, if you haven't detached this mind, you haven't done anything.

Until we can unhook this mind from the world and put it where it is supposed to be, we're not going anywhere. We're not doing anything. It looks like we're doing something but we're like that proverbial boat tied on to the shore. The boat's there and everybody's rowing but they're not going anywhere because it's tied on to the shore. And we're there and we're blasting away just sitting so still; we're serving until our arms fall off; we're satsanging until our voices get sore. But if this mind is still in this world - you can't go anywhere. Because we are supposed to be realising something, we are supposed to be trying to experience something. This is the whole crux of the matter. We want to get to that forefront - we want to see what we are doing, we want to know our direction. And this is our direction.

So if we want to know what true love is, if we want to feel that true love and that true happiness, it's inside of us. That is the thing that really brings us together. That is the real love in this world. Because some people think love is something else. They try to act love and they try to produce love and they try to do all these things. And what comes out of them then? Everything's binding. They bind each other and bind each other. Tighter and tighter and tighter and tighter and tighter. And that's not what love does. Love is absolutely free. And when we're really engaged in true love which is within us, when we're really involved in this truth, then true love will grow amongst us. Not just here, but everywhere. To bring peace to the world is very possible if people are practising true love. Because there is something to be practised, not just something to be talked about. It's something that we have to practise.

We should all really try to concentrate in meditation. We really should make sure we're concentrating, not letting our minds budge from this Knowledge. Really get it fixed there firmly. Give it to Guru Maharaj Ji, let him burn out everything. Don't be afraid to give it, just don't be afraid because there's nothing to fear. Everything we're afraid to lose we're going to lose anyway, there is no doubt about it. The one thing that we can't lose is the one thing that we've been given.

When you meditate, really always remember this: keep yourself concentrated. Don't let the mind move anywhere. Just be really, really concentrated every second. Even though the mind is flipping out, even though the mind is saying, "Oh man, you just can't go another second, you've got to give up. If you just concentrate on the Holy Name one more time you're going to scream." That's great. If you're hearing that, if the mind is just wanting to burst, that's beautiful. That's the time to keep going, because you know you've got it in a corner. When you get a rat in a corner what does it do? When you finally get that mind in the corner it's going to be screaming like crazy. And it's painful. It's like you really want to get up. You're not feeling any physical pain necessarily, but it's like anguish inside. That is the time to just concentrate really hard and not listen to that mind. If you can do that - it's so beautiful what happens. So just keep on going, just keep on going. Go as far as you can.

Guru Maharaj Ji says, "Show this Knowledge to the world," but how do you do it? You don't take out a blackboard and start making diagrams of how to show this Knowledge to the world. You've got to meditate on it. That's the way. So if you want to see peace, if you want to serve Guru Maharaj Ji, then we've got to start right there.

So let's get together, let's really get together on this. Let's show the world that there is something here, that Guru Maharaj Ji really has it.

Jai sat chit anand.