Monday, September 10, 2007

Story of a Young Boy

It was a normal day. The divine Ganges, as usual, was flowing past the little cottages in Uttarkashi. But for the first time, the disciple of the great master, Sri Tapovanji Maharaj, saw a little excitement in his ever serene and poised guru.

An old devotee, a judge from Lucknow who had known the master for about 30 years, was coming. Since he was an elderly man, the guru told his disciple to receive him and see that all arrangements for his comfort were made.

The old gentleman had a complaint for the master. "Swamiji, my grandson doesn't listen. He smokes, comes home late at night, and has developed a number of vices. Swamiji, I have persuaded him to come with me. I have a feeling that if Swamiji will meet him, he will change."

Swamiji agreed. The boy came. He wouldn't remove his shoes, nor did he prostrate himself. It was an interesting case. How would the master handle him?

Swamiji received him with warmth and asked him, "What movie is going on in town nowadays?" "Do they teach anything in college these days?" With such conversation, the master won the confidence of the boy. When his confidence was captured, Swamiji said, "Leave all pooja and worship for your grandmother. But there is something you can do which is good for your health." The boy was interested. "Keep an alarm clock, and every day set the alarm at 5:00am. Even if you go to sleep late at night, it will be good for you to get up and go for a walk. Find a park 20 minutes away from your house. Sit there for 10 minutes, come back; and then, if you wish, you may go back to sleep."

The boy asked, "What will happen?"

Swamiji said, "Do it for one month. I will tell you after a month."

After a month and a half, a letter came from the old devotee saying that the boy had changed.

The disciple who was none other than Sri Swami Chinmayananda, wondered how this change occurred. After four years when he got a chance to go to Lucknow, he met the totally changed boy and asked him, "What happened?"

The young boy said, "On the first day, I went thinking that the swami must be slightly . . . but he is a nice guy . . . I went to the park, heard the sweet chirping of the birds, saw the beautiful trees, felt the tender breeze - I stayed longer than 10 minutes.

“Next day, again I went because of the lovely memory. I exposed myself to the rising sun, heard the songs of the birds. After a week it was all the same. I was no longer interested. What else could come to my mind except a parade of my past? But when I saw what kind of man I was and what an ugly life I was living as compared to my innocent childhood, I decided to change!”

The boy became spiritual through solitude.

Man when left alone, will become spiritual. Materialism cannot survive when man starts thinking. The secular, the materialistic world, will not allow you to think. Therefore we have radio, television, dance, and so on - all to distract the mind.

Throw yourself into your own company. You are afraid of loneliness because you do not have the courage to meet yourself. When you are alone, you cannot but see the parade of your past - recognize how base your values are. You discover that you have a great image of yourself, but the real you is something else.

Thus, be in your own company! You need not search for God. Be with yourself, and you will turn to God!

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