Chapter 1: The Roots and the Flowers Are One
If you can find a person who is wholly devoted to God, then devote yourself to that person - because love cannot be taught, it can only be caught. Nobody can teach you the ways of love; you will have to live in close vicinity of a lover. Nobody can teach you how to pray: you will have to live in close vicinity of one who is in prayer. Watching him, feeling him, moving around him, tasting the flavor of his being, will teach you what prayer is. Then prayer will not become a ritual. Then prayer will be a flowering within you, a spontaneous arising of a new vision.
Distill the sweetness of the heart and reach the treasures, devoting yourself to those wholly devoted. That is the relationship between a master and a disciple. Bauls move in search of a master. Whenever they find somebody whose song, whose dancing is prayerful.and there is no intellectual criterion for knowing it; you have just to be with someone.
How do you know that a person is in love? What is the criterion? Just be with him and see: see how he behaves, see how he responds. See his tears and his songs. Watch his moods in different moments. By and by, you will be able to feel what worship, what love, what prayer is. Yes, it cannot be taught, but it can be caught.
“Will the day ever dawn
when the treasured man of my heart
will become my own?
Though not cast in any shape,
the man is evidenced
in the ways of love.”
There is no proof for God, but there is enough proof in those people who have loved him. There is no proof that God exists, but there is enough proof that a Meera existed, that Chaitanya existed. There is enough proof because we have seen a transfiguration happening in Meera, we have seen the transmutation happening in Chaitanya. We have seen, they were ordinary metal suddenly becoming gold. We don’t know God exists; there is no proof - but is it not enough proof? The Bauls say, .the man is evidenced in the ways of love. That is the only evidence.
Vivekananda went to Ramakrishna. He wanted a proof for God, and Ramakrishna started laughing in his mad way. And suddenly, he touched Vivekananda’s heart with his feet. Vivekananda fell into a swoon, a trance. The friends that had come with Vivekananda were all worried: “What has happened?” And Vivekananda was not the sort to fall easily into a trance. He was an intellectual, atheistic, skeptical, well trained in logic and philosophy. What had happened? What had this man done? And when Vivekananda came back, he was a totally different man. Then Vivekananda tried in thousands of ways to escape from this man Ramakrishna, but it was impossible. It was as if a great magnet was pulling him. He would escape for a few days and then come back, almost against his will. One day he would again find himself sitting before Ramakrishna, and he would tell Ramakrishna, “Leave me alone. Why are you haunting me?” Ramakrishna said, “What can I do? You asked, ‘Is there any God, is there any proof?’ I don’t know any proof. All that I know is that he is in me, so I allowed him to touch you. What else can I do? Now it is for you to decide whether God is or not.”