Q: Baba! Please tell us, how you are attained. I find my Sadhana infructuous.
A: I know you are inflicting many austerities on yourself. I must tell you that I am attained only by devotion and by a way of life that is illumined by that devotion. Do not deprive the body of its elementary needs; it is a sacred instrument you have earned, for taking you to the goal. Lead simple Satwic life, eat simple Satwic food, be sincere in speech, do loving service, be humble and tolerant, maintain undisturbed equanimity. Direct all your thoughts towards me resident in your heart.
Q: How, Baba, how can we progress in devotion?
A: There are different modes of devotion—that which foolishly weeps for me when I am not physically present; that which surrenders to me with wild abandon; and that which is steady and strong, ever attached to my will. I accept all these forms of devotion. The choice between one or the other is not yours, for, it is I who rules your feelings, modifies them. If you try to go where I do not will, I stop you; you can do nothing apart from my will. Be assured of that; this is the highest devotion.
Q: So, what remains for me to do?
A: What makes you think that `doing' is so important? Be equal minded. Then you will not be bothered about 'doing' or `not doing', success or failure; the balance will remain unaffected by either. Let the wave of memory, the storm of desire, the fire of emotion pass through; without affecting your equanimity. Be a witness of these: Commitment engenders, holding, narrowing, limiting. Be willing to be nothing. Let all dualities subside in your neutrality.
Q: Yes, Baba. But, when it is pain that one has to endure...
A: Do you think that I would confront you with pain, were there not a reason for it? Open your heart to pain, as you do now for pleasure, for it is My will, wrought by Me, for your good. Welcome it, as a challenge. Do not turn away from it. Turn within, and derive the strength to bear it and benefit by it. Do not listen to your mind; for, mind is but another word for `need'. The mind engenders need; it manifested as this world, because it needed thus. It is all My plan: to drive you by the pangs of unfulfilled need to listen to my voice, which, when heard, dissolves the ego and the mind with it.
Q: Baba! I crave for your Darshan, ever. Tell me where you go to and when.
A: I want you to pass beyond these criteria, and wait in readiness, and yet, with uncertainty. Location is limitation; let events manifold themselves. Be willing to be led by me, as I choose.
Q: But, how can we rise up to those high expectations, being so full of defects?
A: Your deficiencies make you need me, and curb the arrogance of your mind. They are there on purpose, as instruments to prod you on. Through them, I am making you want me. The feeling of separation is just a trick of your mind. You form conclusions, they become beliefs, and they shape your activities and attitudes.
Q: It is hard, to undergo your tests.
A: It is like baking a cake. I stir, I knead, I pound, I twist, and I bake you. I drown you in tears; I scorch you in sobs. I make you sweet and crisp, an offering worthy of God. I have come to re-form you. My plan is to transmute you into a successful Sadhak. I wont leave you until I do that. Even if you stray away before you become that, I will hold on to you. You cannot escape from me.
Q: You are so compassionate.
A: There is nothing I do not see, nowhere where I do not know the way. My sufficiency is unconditional, independent of everything. I am the totality—all of it.
Q: How then can we aspire for your Grace?
A: I do not ask for perfect concentration or full renunciation. I ask only for your Love, Love that sees me and serves me, in all beings. I ask only that you turn to me, when your mind drags you into grief or pride or envy. Bring me the depths of your minds, no matter how grotesque, how cruelly ravaged by doubts or disappointments. I know how to treat them. I will not reject you. I am your mother. No matter where you go, I am there. I can work with you everywhere.
Q: I clamour for Darshan; but, you ask me to leave for my home across the seas.
A: Do you not see very great merit ignored, that I might respond to need? Merit is only one amongst the many ways that lead men to me. Want of merit is also one of the ways by which men are drawn by me to my presence. Those who think that I am this outer form need me far more than you do. Their faith is more insecure, and, often, not at all. Their confusion arises from the habit of their minds depending on external conditions, and drawing its sense of security from those external conditions.
Q: Baba! However inadequate, I ask just this boon: Make me your instrument.
A: All are my instruments. Perhaps you believe, that I choose; this one is good, that one is worse etc. No. Either will do, so far as I am concerned. Both will do. My will is the source of all that is and happens; it interpenetrates every thing and act; it includes everything. Finally let me tell you this: My will is that you should manifest my will in you and through you.