During one of His visit to Ooty, Bhagawan conducted a series of edifying fireside chats with a small group of devotees who had accompanied Him on the visit. The talks combined profound insights into spiritual truths with entertaining parables narrated in Bhagawan's own delectable manner.
On one evening, Bhagawan related a story about the Sage Narada's encounter with Lord Narayana to bring out the eminence of the true devotee in the eyes of the Lord.
Bhagawan said: On one occasion Narada went to the Lord. In the course of their conversation, Narayana asked Narada: "You are moving around three worlds, what news have you brought for Me from your wanderings? Have you seen anything great in my creation?" "What is greater than Yourself in the world,” said Narada. "I am asking you about my creation and not about myself,” said Narayana. Narada said: "I do not understand the question.” "There are five basic elements, the Pancha-bhutas. Which is the greatest among them?” Narayana asked. Narada said: "The earth is the biggest.” Narayana said: "In the earth three fourths are occupied by water.” Narada agreed that water was greater than the earth. But Narayana observed: "All the oceans were drunk by the sage Agastya in one gulp. Therefore, who is greater, water or Agastya?" Narada agreed that Agastya was greater. But Narayana observed that "Agastya is remaining as a star in the sky. In the vast firmament, Agastya is merely twinkling as a small star; is not the firmament greater than the star?" Narada agreed that the the firmament was greater than Agastya. Then Narayana said, "In my Avatar as Vamana I covered the entire earth and sky with one foot of mine. So is the firmament greater or my foot?" Then Narada said: `Your Foot'.
"If my foot itself is so great, am I not greater than my foot,” Narayana asked. Narada agreed. Then Narayana said, "Although I am great, I am confined in the hearts of my devotees. So the devotees are greater than myself. And therefore, wherever my devotees sing my name I am there.”
Hence, everyone must cultivate a broad mind, a large hearted outlook. Broad mindedness is expansion, narrow mindedness is contraction. Devotees should also cultivate broadmindedness. It is to broaden the heart that name of the Lord should be chanted. Instead of singing by oneself, when devotees sing in groups, a sense of unity develops. By all people singing in unison and all hands clapping together, all hearts become one. This unity is proclaimed by the Vedas by describing the different organs of the Lord as the source of the power in the different sense organs of a human being.