I continued to call him Masto because Pagal Baba had said, “Never call him Masta Baba again; he will be offended. I used to call him Masto, and from now on you have to do the same.” And it was really a sight! – a child calling him, who was respected by hundreds of people, “Masto.” And not only that, he would immediately do whatever I said to him.
Once, just as an example…. He was delivering a talk. I stood up and said, “Masto, stop immediately!” He was in the middle of a sentence. He did not even complete it; he stopped. People urged him to please finish what he was saying. He would not even answer. He pointed toward me. I had to go to the microphone and tell the people to please go to their homes, the lecture was over, and Masto had been taken into my custody.
He laughed hilariously, and touched my feet. And his way of touching my feet…. Thousands of people must have touched my feet, but he had a way of his own, just unique. He touched my feet almost – how to say it – as if he were confronting God himself. And he always became just tears, and his long hair…. I had such a job helping him to sit up again.
I would say, “Masto, enough! Enough is enough.” But who was there to listen? He was crying, singing, or chanting a mantra. I had to wait until he had finished. Sometimes I was sitting there for even half an hour, just to say to him, “It is enough.” But I could only say it when he had finished. After all, I too have some manners. I could not just say, “Stop!” or “Leave my feet!” when they were in his hands.
In fact I never wanted him to leave them, but I had other things to do, and so did he. It is a practical world, and although I am very impractical, as far as others are concerned, I am not; I am always pragmatic and practical. When I could get a single moment in which to interrupt, I would say, “Masto, stop. Enough. You are crying your eyes out, and your hair – I will have to wash it. It is becoming dirty in the mud.”
You know the Indian dust: it is omnipresent, everywhere, particularly in a village. Everything is dusty. Even people’s faces look dusty. What can they do? How many times can they wash? Even here, although in an air conditioned room where there is no dust, just out of old habit, whenever I go to the bathroom – just to tell you a secret, don’t tell anybody – I wash my face for no reason at all, many times each day…just an old Indian habit.
It was so dusty that I used to run to the bathroom again and again.
My mother used to say to me, “It seems we should make a bathroom in your room, so that you don’t have to run through the house so many times. What do you do?”
I said, “I just wash my face – there is so much dust.” I told Masto, “I will have to wash your hair.” And I used to wash his hair. It was so beautiful, and I always love anything beautiful. This man Masto, about whom Pagal Baba worried so much, was the third enlightened man. He wanted three enlightened men to touch the feet of a small unenlightened boy, and he managed.
Madmen have their own ways. He managed perfectly. He even persuaded the enlightened ones to touch the feet of a boy who was certainly not enlightened.