The master is not interested in making you into a computer. His interest is in making you a light unto yourself, an authentic being, an immortal being – not just knowledge, not what others have said, but your experience.
As the disciple comes closer and closer to the master, there comes another point of transformation – the disciple becomes, at one point, a devotee. There is a beauty in all these steps.
To become a disciple was a great revolution, but nothing compared with becoming a devotee. At what point does the disciple turn and become a devotee? He is nourished so much by the energy of the master, by his light, by his love, by his laughter, just by his sheer presence – and he cannot give anything in return. There is nothing that he can give in return. A moment comes when he starts feeling so immensely grateful that he simply bows down his head to the feet of the master. He has nothing else to give except himself. From that moment he is almost a part of the master, he is in a deep synchronicity with the heart of the master. This is gratitude, gratefulness.
And the fourth stage is that he becomes one with the master.
There is a story about Rinzai. He was living with his master for almost twenty years, and one day he came and sat in the seat of the master. The master came; he looked at Rinzai sitting in his seat. He simply went and sat where Rinzai used to sit. Nothing was said, but everything was understood. Everybody was puzzled – “What is happening?” Finally Rinzai said to the master, “Are you not offended? Have I insulted you? Have I shown ungratefulness in any way?”
The master laughed. He said, “Now you have become a master. You have come home; from the student to disciplehood, from disciplehood to devotion, and from devotion to mastery. I am immensely pleased that now you can share my work. Now I need not come every day; I know somebody else is there with the same aura, with the same perfume.
“In fact you have been very lazy. This should have happened three months before; you cannot deceive me. For three months I have been feeling that this man is unnecessarily holding my feet – he can sit on the seat, and for a change I can hold his feet. It took three months for you to gather courage.”
Rinzai said, “My God, I was thinking nobody knew about it, that it was just inside me. And you are giving me the exact date of when it started. Yes, it has been three months. I have been lazy and I have not been courageous enough. I was always thinking that this is not right, it doesn’t look right.”
The master said, “If you had waited one more day I was going to hit you on your head. Three months is enough time to decide, and you were not deciding…and existence has decided.”
An upanishad is a mystery school.
And we are entering into an upanishad today.