Spiritual Masters who have truly realised God are very rare souls, and most human beings will almost certainly never encounter one. And if they did, how many would recognise in this encounter a being who had scaled the highest heights? For the lives of God-realised souls are characterised by humility and simplicity, not the overt trappings of pomp, power, and status that characterise most other forms of human celebrity.
There is an illustrative story of an ascetic in search of the Buddha. He travelled far and wide, at last coming to stay for a night in a house where the Buddha was also staying. “Have you seen the Buddha?” he asked, but unaware of what the Buddha would look like, he continued on his way the next day, disappointed and still searching. In the same way you could pass an enlightened Master in the street, but without some training of your own, you would in all probability be unaware of who had just passed you by.
In late 1989 Guru was in New Zealand for a few days. One afternoon following a pipe organ performance at the Auckland Town Hall, at his request we took him to a local gym. In a bright yellow dhoti after his concert he was an unusual figure, seemingly a small unassuming Indian man in his early sixties with two or three attendants.
Well known for his feats of strength, and for his advocacy of meditation as a key to transcendence in all areas of accomplishment, in no time he had a small group of weightlifters and bodybuilders around him. They were keen to ask questions and determine for themselves the authenticity of the stories they had heard about his achievements.
Guru was asked about his lifts and the weights involved, and he replied with simple candour. As though to dispel any doubts about these claims, he then went to two or three sets of apparatus while his audience closely watched and lifted first a 900-pound stack on the standing calf-raise⎯even lifting one foot off the platform at the height of the lift⎯and then a very heavy overhead one-arm press. His audience was clearly surprised and impressed, and several tried to emulate these feats.
His credibility now established to everyone’s satisfaction, Guru then began an impromptu and informative talk about the relationship between strength and power, body and spirit, and ended by saying “I can do nothing, I am nothing without the Grace of God, my Beloved Supreme.”
It was thrilling and moving to see this simple situation being used to bring a new understanding to the people there. With absolute confidence and at the same time absolute humility, he disowned any form of personal accomplishment and credited his achievement entirely to God, inspiring each person there to understand their own unlimited potential when finite matter is harnessed to the infinite possibilities of spirit.
In their lives, spiritual Masters teach others in every little thing they say and do, spreading the light of God and the message of the Infinite into the everyday and finite stuff of human life.
Comes not from outer exercise
But from inner awakening.
Sri Chinmoy 1