Chapter 9: Pure Land Paradise
Subhuti replied: Not so, O Lord, there is not.
Between a master and a teacher what is transferred? Not truth, not knowledge - then what is transferred? In fact, nothing is transferred. In the presence of the master something arises in the deepest core of the disciple, not that it is transferred. Nothing travels from the master to the disciple, nothing at all, but the presence of the master, the very presence of the master, and something that was deep inside starts surfacing. The presence of the master calls forth the being of the disciple. Not that something is given or transferred, just the very presence of the master becomes a catalytic presence and the disciple starts changing.
Of course, a disciple will think that something is being done by the master. Nothing is being done. No real master ever does anything. All his doing consists of being present to you, in being available to you. All his work consists of one simple thing - that he should be there, just like the sun.
The sun rises in the morning and buds open and become flowers. Not that the sun gives them something, not that the sun comes and opens the buds - nothing is done by the sun, just the presence of the light and the bud starts opening. The opening comes from the bud itself.and the flowering and the fragrance - it all comes from the bud itself. The sun has not added anything to it, but the presence has been catalytic. Without the sun being present there the bud would find it almost impossible to open. It would not know that opening is possible. It would never become alert of its possibilities and potential.
A master simply makes you aware of your potential. If he has achieved, you can achieve. He is just like you - the blood and the bones and the body. He is just like you. If something is possible in his being, if his bud can become a flower, then why can’t you become? This very idea sinks deep into the heart, stirs your whole being, and energies start surfacing, your bud starts opening.
This is called satsang in the East - to be in the presence of the master. And the real disciple is one who has come to know how to be present to the master. The master is present, but how to be present to the master?
Have you seen the sunflower? That is the symbol for the disciple. Wherever the sun moves, the sunflower moves that way. It is always present to the sun. In the morning it is facing east, in the evening it is facing west. It has moved with the sun. Wherever the sun is, the sunflower moves. The sunflower is the symbol, the metaphor, for the disciple.