The second stage is that of the seeker. In the first stage there is only intellectual curiosity, a kind of itching. It feels good, like when you are scratching a scab, although there is no benefit from it and there can be harm. In the same way, there is no benefit from an intellectual itching but there can be harm. Still it feels good, pleasant. Ask this, ask that, learn this, learn that also – the ego is satisfied, it says, “I am not ignorant.” Without knowing, the illusion of being a knower arises. Ten percent of these people will stay and this ten percent will become seekers.
A seeker means one who no longer only wants to listen, to just understand intellectually, rather, he also wants to experiment. Experiment is the foundation for a seeker. Now he wants to do something and to see. Now his eagerness takes a new form, it becomes doing. Now he doesn’t only talk about meditation, he begins meditating, because nothing happens from talking, only more talk emerges. Talk is only talk, like soap bubbles…empty, hot air. Let’s do something! Let this life be transformed, let some experiences happen.
From this second class of people fifty percent will stay and fifty percent will disappear, because doing is not an easy matter. Listening is very easy, you don’t have to do anything. I speak, you listen, and the matter is finished. In doing you have to do something, and success is not guaranteed. Unless there is urgency, unless there is intensity, unless there is the courage to put yourself at stake, unless there is daring – success is not easy. A lukewarm doing cannot attain success: it boils at one hundred degrees. Few people are able to gather so much courage. Those who cannot gather that much courage start thinking there is nothing to it, there is no substance in any doing either. This is only consoling your mind – that there is nothing in it. He hasn’t done it, he has never really entered the doing. Or, if he did, he stayed just near the bank, he never went deep where diving is possible. He never cooked the food. He just went on lighting the stove. That too he lit so casually that it never took fire. There was a lot of smoke but the fire never took, and who can spend much time in the smoke? Soon his eyes will be filled with tears and his mind will say, “Come on, what can I gain here, there is nothing but smoke.” But where there is smoke a fire is possible, where there is smoke there must be fire. A little deeper effort was needed. There needed to be a little more transforming discipline, a little more exertion and a little more effort. These fifty percent of people who could not make that much effort will leave. The fifty percent who stay will enter the third stage.
The third stage is the stage of the disciple. To be a disciple means that now the joy of experiencing has come, now recognition of the master has arisen. It comes only through your experiencing, it will not happen through listening. Through listening only this much can be known: you may think, “It seems right, but does this person have his own experience or not, or is he merely repeating scriptures? Who knows if the master is a master or not, or if it is mere scholarship?”
If you start tasting it only then will it become clear whether the one you have come near is not a scholar, or if he is only a scholar. In this tasting it will be decided, and only your tasting can tell you. If he is a master then the third moment has come, the third stage has begun: you have become a disciple.