Okay. Do you see the synchronicity? Simultaneously, I and Devageet said, “Okay.” Of course he said it for one thing, I for something else; but the lines cross.
The moment before I came in I was listening to one of the greatest flutists, Hari Prasad. It stirred many memories in me.
There are many types of flute in the world. The most important is the Arabic; the most beautiful, the Japanese; and there are many others. But there is nothing comparable to the small Indian bamboo flute for its sweetness. And Hari Prasad is certainly a master as far as the flute is concerned. He played before me, not just once but many times. Whenever he felt he had to play really to his utmost, he would rush to me wherever I was, sometimes even thousands of miles, just to play his flute for one hour alone with me.
I asked him, “Hari Prasad, you could have played anywhere – why make such a long journey?”
And in India, one thousand miles is almost like twenty thousand miles in the West. The Indian trains – they still walk, not run. In Japan the trains run at four hundred miles per hour; and in India forty miles an hour is a great speed; and the buses, and the rickshaws. Just to play the flute for one hour alone in my bedroom…I asked him, “Why?”
He said, “Because I have thousands of admirers but nobody understands particularly the soundless sound. Unless one understands the soundless sound he cannot really appreciate…. So I come to you; and just that one hour is enough to enable me to play my flute for months before all kinds of idiots – governors, chief ministers, and the so-called ‘ great ones.’ When I feel utterly tired and exhausted and fed up with the idiots, I run to you. Please don’t deny me just this one hour.”
I said, “It is a joy to hear you, your flute, your song. In themselves they are great, but particularly so because they remind me of the man who introduced us. Do you remember that man?”
He had completely forgotten who had introduced him to me, and I can understand…it must have been forty years before. I was a small child, he was a young man. He tried hard to remember but could not, and said, “Excuse me but it seems my memory is not functioning well. I cannot even remember the man who introduced me to you. Even if I forget everything else, at least I should remember him.”
I reminded him of the man, and he became just tears. That is the man I would like to talk to you about today.
Pagal Baba was one of those remarkable men whom I am going to talk about. He was of the same category as Magga Baba. He was known just as Pagal Baba. Pagal means “the mad.” He came like a wind, always suddenly, and then disappeared as suddenly as he had come….