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Chapter 30: Allow Faith to Happen

There was a great master, a Sufi master. A disciple came to him - this disciple became very famous later on. His name was Bayazid Bastami.

Bayazid came to his master. The master looked into his eyes and said, “Remain silent.” The disciple had not even uttered a single word, he had not said anything, he had not even been introduced. This was the first thing the master said. He looked into the eyes of Bayazid and said, “Remain silent.”

Bayazid thought, “He may be occupied. I will wait.” But the waiting lasted for twelve years. How could Bayazid speak when the master said “Remain silent”? He remained with his master for twelve years, not speaking a single word.

Many came and went: in these twelve years, crowds came and went. Bayazid was there, just waiting, waiting. It was a long, long wait - twelve years! And because the master had said “Don’t speak. Remain silent,” he would not speak to anyone else either. He was totally silent.

By and by, thoughts dropped. If you don’t use them they drop, because by using them you give them energy and fuel. Finally, thinking stopped. Twelve years, no speaking, no talking, just waiting. The mind dropped. Suddenly one day.

The first time that Bayazid had come, the master had looked into his eyes. After twelve years, he looked again into Bayazid’s eyes and said, “But now there is no need to speak” - as if this was the second sentence, connected with the first; as if there had been no twelve years of waiting and he was still speaking: “Remain silent. Now there is no need to speak.” But there was a gap of twelve years between these two sentences!

Bayazid laughed. The master said, “Now you can go and teach others. You are ready. You have become a master in your own right.”

People asked the old master again and again, “How did this happen? This young man was not doing anything and now you say he has become a master in his own right. He was just waiting here, wasting time. He looks stupid, dull. He has not even uttered a single sentence. He may be dumb! He goes on sitting and sitting; he is just lazy. What are you saying? How can it be that he has become a master in his own right when he has not practiced anything?”

The master said, “But he need not practice anything. He didn’t need to. He simply surrendered, and I could work. He said yes, there was no need on his part to do anything else. A total yes was enough on his part. Then I entered him and worked. For these twelve years I have been working. He was simply allowing.”

This is what surrender means: allow, relax your ego. Then, much is possible. Otherwise, you go on destroying yourself, doing things against yourself.