A couple of decades ago, or several decades ago or centuries ago, our life on this Earth was not so beautiful. We did not have so many highways, we did not have electricity, and we did not have airplanes. If I had been born a little bit earlier, say a hundred or maybe two hundred years ago, I probably wouldn't have the opportunity to be here with you tonight in such a quick and relaxed way, to share with you the atmosphere of the ancient sages, of the Golden Age. With these few hours, we can forget at least some of our sorrows, our hatred, our pressure in order to merge ourselves in the noble philosophy of the ancient saints. You are invited to join in the golden moment of higher purposes of life.
Our world is very, very beautiful compared to many other planets; that we know of or maybe not know of, just pretend that we know some. Scientifically speaking, there have been a few more planets that were discovered which are not as beautiful as ours.
So, we can congratulate ourselves for having such a little paradise where we have enough water, green and air. Even air, because in some of the planets, the air is not alive. Sometimes it is very contaminated, and the living beings can not even stay there.
Our world has been beautified day after day until we have reached today's comfort. We have a better kind of life with electricity, and with all kinds of civilized inventions. That is just about material comfort. Similarly, if our spirit, which is more important than the flesh even, were equipped with more of the very comforting instruments, then our life would be much better, still.
Our human body or our human life consists not only of the material appearance of the body or the thinking power of the mind, but we have also something beyond these two which is the spirit. The spirit, the wisdom or the supreme power which is within us is that which makes all things come to life and sustain them. Therefore, while we are so-called living, we can move, we can talk, we can think, we can love, we can investigate, we can do many things. But when the so-called spirit leaves us, then even if the same body exist, we can not do anything. So, if while living we learn to know this spirit, which is the dominating factor behind all our living activities, then, we will be wiser, more enlightened and, of course, more satisfied. Otherwise, even though we have a lot of comforts in life, and our civilization has reached such a height in the history, many of us are still unhappy
Many things we want to do in life, many ideals we want to fulfill, but we do not know how to begin. Even if we knew how to begin, we are not certain whether it is the true direction. Therefore, many times, we are unsuccessful despite all our sincerity, our prayers and our good will to serve the world at large. It is difficult to reach our goal. It is because we do not recognize the spirit, or the supreme power which is dormant in all of us. It's just like a person who has a great treasure in his house, and doesn't know where it is. Therefore, he can not make use of it for the betterment of his life.
I am sure all of us here, and most of the people in the world, long for peace, true happiness and beauty, inside as well as outside. But, why is it that most of the time, we spend a lot of money, time in some matters, but it can not be accomplished? It is because we do not approach problems from the right angle. It is because we do not use our supreme wisdom in all of our undertakings.
Actually, whatever we learn outside, the same with every of us, whatever we try to learn with the mind which is our super computer, we can not accomplish it in a hundred percent way. Besides, there are so many things to do in life, so many projects we want to accomplish with only the very limited power of this computer. Even though it is the best quality, sometimes, it does go out of order. When we put some wrong fuel in it, like too much whisky in one day, then it zig zags and doesn't work maybe for one or a couple of days; or we put too many drugs or something that is very detrimental to the thinking power of our computer. But if we do things with our great wisdom, with the central intelligent force which is connected with the whole universal network, then we can do many wonders, and yet we don't use any effort. This is what Lao-Tze called "Do without doing, action in non-action."
How do we accomplish this? It is very simple. All the masters in the past have promised us that whatever they do, we can do also. If they have become the Buddha (enlightened being), we can also become Buddhas; because whatever they have, or they had, or they discovered, we have also. All human beings are born equal. It is up to us to make use of our treasure or not. God, if there is one, would not push us; because we are the most respected creation in the whole universe. We are at the crown of creation, and our free will is absolute. Because God has made man in Hiers own image, therefore, man's will is God. Nevertheless, we have forgotten to use our free will, sometimes, to better our lives or to bless this world. Instead, we have abused this power; and therefore, many times have brought disaster into our beautiful planet, and then into our lives.
The difference between heaven and Earth, or heaven and hell is only a hair's breath apart. The only difference is our attention, we withdraw inward instead of spreading outside. Then, we know the kingdom of God. But most of the people think this is impossible, while the experienced practitioner of the path knows that it is very easy, very simple. Even children from six years old can do it; and old people, up to sixty, sometimes over, can even do it. Everyone can do it, because everyone has this power within themselves. Therefore, the Buddha said, "I and all beings are equal. How come they do not know it? And Jesus said, What I do, you can do better."
Better doesn't mean we will be higher than Him. Better means that in the future, we will be allowed more freedom to exert our power, to communicate this good message to a greater number of people; whereas, He was limited to only three and half years of preaching. We, in the modern time, can use a lot of the high technical developments in order to communicate to the masses. Therefore, He said, "What I do, you can do better." It's a prediction for a more liberated future, a more liberal future.
In the time of Jesus, the religious activity or the Truth was feared, persecuted, hidden from the mass of the people; because the politicians at that time feared anyone who had power would move the masses. Didn't matter if that power was for the good of mankind or not, that was just a power struggle. That's why in the ancient times, or maybe up to recently, we have not had much chance to know about spiritual secrets which are actually not secrets at all.
Many hundreds of years ago in Au Lac we had no electric lights. One of our ambassadors, or maybe a delegate from Au Lac, went to France to study. When he came home, he reported that in the west, people have the lamp upside down. Before we had the old lamp, which you had to stand on the table. But in the west, the lamps were all upside down and the water came from the wall -- the tap water. The king cut his head off. Because the king and the whole hierarchy, the whole royal household could not believe that truth, they accused him of blasphemy or not respecting the king, making a fool of the royal lineage. Not only was his head cut off, but that of many of his relatives and family members as well.
Such was the punishment in the old times for someone who was suspected of not being loyal to the ruler of the nation. Nowaday, luckily we don't have such injustice; the majority of the people in the world know that the upside-down lamp is very normal. Thanks God.
Similarly, many centuries ago, spiritual attainment or becoming enlightened was something very mystical, very impossible, a very far-fetched kind of visionary dream. But today, it is a very common theme that people sometimes even talk about in coffee shops, in the park, in the train or on the buses, etc. This is good. The age of our world has changed. We have begun to live in another kind of atmosphere where many more people will be enlightened, and peace will be more accessible to mankind. Let's hope that in the future generation, all the rulers of the Earth will not rule with armed force, but with wisdom and love; because all men are brothers.
The different countries are different rooms which the whole family has the right to share with each other, and to live with each other in harmony. As long as the majority of us are not enlightened and not using this super wisdom within us to take care of the world and to do everything, whether big or small, our world will not become what we dream or what we expect it to become. Therefore, the future of the world is in our hands. It's not only in the political figures of any great nation.
Even if there were one great king who ruled the whole planet, who had great wisdom like that of Solomon or King David of old, but if the whole mass of people were swimming in ignorance he couldn't do much. Therefore, when Jesus, Buddha or other masters were still living, because the communication was very poor, the enlightenment message was not very widely spread among the people. Even they had the son of God on Earth, even they had the Buddha, the world at that time was still chaotic. Today, thanks to the many wonderful inventions, we have a beautiful communication system and we have fast transportation methods. Therefore, many of the people of the world, thousands, billions of people have been enlightened through different saints, different messages from different spiritual schools. We can see the hope of the Golden Age in the horizon. Our world, many of the great conflicts between powerful nations have ceased somehow. Everyone can breathe a sigh of relief, because we do not fear much the third world war or fourth anymore, or at least for the moment.
It is because, this age, many of people have become enlightened and use the wisdom to bless the world or to enlighten the neighbors. One leads the others and then soon many, many more, the majority of the people will be living in the wisdom of their birth-right, and using it to bless the world, make it become heaven. Otherwise, doesn't matter how much we try, with our limited knowledge of books or experience in our field, we can only do a very small amount of service to mankind.
Jesus was great and is worshipped by the whole world up to now. It is due to His wisdom, the supreme wisdom within Himself. Buddha is still alive within the hearts of the people of the world. It is due to His supreme wisdom or the Buddha nature, which both of them stated that we also possess. We know all this, we have read all this, we have learned all this from many teachers, from many books; but we never wonder, How can I get it? Why don't I have it? The answer is, we do have it, we can have it, and we always have had it; but we do not know how to make use of it. We are too busy with the worldly knowledge that we learned from books, we are too proud of knowing many things; but the greatest wisdom we have neglected. It's just like the prince, the son of a king, who has forgotten his heritage and gone out begging for some morsels of food. It is very pitiful.
Then, we blame God for not helping us. We blame the Buddha for not blessing us. God and Buddha have already blessed us, have told us what to do; but we do, most of the time, the opposite. Even if, we just talk about the very simple precepts, like love thy neighbor or thou shall not kill , even that, many of us can not keep. God has prescribed the way of heaven, "If you love me, keep my commandments." If we did, our world would have become long ago a paradise. Now, if we blame God, we should think twice.
Wherever I go, many people ask me, If God is almighty, why doesn't Hes turn the world into heaven? Why didn't Hes make everyone better, become angels and so? Yes! Hes has told everyone to be angels, but we do not listen. We do not want to keep the commandments of God which can make our Earth become heaven. Why is it so? We know it, but we cannot do it. We cannot keep the precepts. It is because we lack the supreme power. We don't have the strength to resist so many of the temptation of this world.
That doesn't mean after initiation, or after enlightenment, you don't eat, you don't sleep, you throw away all your property. It is not the case. All the worldly-created phenomena, we can enjoy. We just enjoy more, because we know heavenly life -- that which enhances our life more. Just like before, we didn't have electricity, we didn't have electric lights. Our world still went on, but in a little bit more darkness. Now, we have electricity, we have lamps all over the place, and we can work all night long without any problem. That makes our life more comfortable and more enjoyable.
Similarly, our life here is already good. But, it would be best for us if we had enlightenment. Enlightenment means more light into our life. Not artificial light, but the light that is everlasting. Then, every activity and everything we do, we are very clear. Not clear at the level of the mind, but clear at the level of super consciousness. Therefore, we will always be in the correct direction. Even if we make mistakes, it is not a mistake. We will know it's just apparently so, but it's actually the plan of the universal brotherhood.
Many people fear that after enlightenment, they cannot do their business, that they may not be able to get married, or they will have trouble of any kind. But it is the wrong conception of enlightenment. Enlightenment should be, that we will be more beneficial to the world, more efficient in whatever we do, and more happy in our life. Enlightenment doesn't mean we have to spend our life in misery or in ascetic practice, smearing ashes all over the body and all that. You can do that if you are in India. It saves some cloth. But in the West we don't need to do that. Whatever we do, whether we smear ashes on our body, whether we shave our head, or we wear rags or beautiful clothes, it should be accompanied with enlightenment. And that is all we lack.
We shouldn't and we don't have to change our way of life. We just have to adjust to a correct way of life. We just have to add more light into our spirit. It's just like now, we add electric lights to our daily use. Once we have discovered electricity, we can use it in many, many ways. We can have television, radio, light, refrigerator, etc. Everything we want, it is available.
Electricity was not the invention of mankind. It was just a discovery. Similarly, enlightenment is not an invention of Buddha or Christ or it's not a gift from any master. It is a birth-right, it is an inheritance within all of us. Each moment we want to have it, provided we have an experienced friend to show us the first time how to do it, then we have it; and we can have it all the time.
Just like if you walk into a house, a new house or your house, and you don't know where the switches or the electric plugs are. It's very difficult to go around the wall, touching here and there, to try to find them. But, if someone who has been in that house and who knows where the switches are just tells us, then we can even close our eyes and do it everyday; because we know exactly where they are.
Most of us live in this life trying to go through the hard way, with the complicated method. Therefore, when we hear someone say, Enlightenment is easy. It is immediate. It's free of every obligation, we feel very reluctant to believe.
But why not? If the thing is already in your pocket and someone points it out to you, why is it so difficult? It was there all the time. In the Bible, it is even says, "The Kingdom of God is within you, and Seek first the kingdom of God and all the things shall be added unto you." Truly, it is like that.
We go through life, spending a lot of energy, time and finances, trying to find happiness and wisdom through different material means and through different gains in possession, love or business; but we never find it. As soon as we are satisfied with one point, we want the next one, and we will never stop. Deep down within our heart, there is always something that is not satisfactory, something empty. It is because our subconscious, superconscious, knows that we have missed the greatest part of our life. That is the supreme wisdom which is there for us to use. We should use it, if we want to live a true life and we want to experience true happiness.
If we step beyond this material existence into the world of light and reality, even for just one moment, we will know that this life is not the only and is not the best life there is. It is only a copy of the real life. Then we lose the attachment or the sense of competition that we have for this very ephemeral life. That's why when the sages of old became enlightened, they forsook the whole kingdom. They could do that because they had a gain, they had gained a greater kingdom within themselves.
Jesus said, "My kingdom is not on earth. My kingdom is in heaven." Where is that heaven? How do we get there? It is right here. We can get it anytime, provided we sincerely want it. If we do not see heaven now, in this life, who can be sure that we will get it after we die. Do you ever work for a company and the boss says, You just work on. After you die, I'll give you all the money you need. (Laughter) Would you agree to that condition?
You always believe in the hereafter heaven which you don't see. Therefore, you are invited to see the heaven on Earth. Seeing that, everything we see in this life is only a copy, a shadow of the real. Then, we enjoy and cherish even the shadow better, because we know the real is beautiful. Suppose you know a beautiful girl and you know her personally. Then, even when she comes near you, even just seeing her shadow -- you haven't seen the girl, she was inside the door, and the shadow was projected outside -- you are thrilled; because you are connected with the real person, and you know that is the shadow of "my beloved". So, you love even the shadow as well. You welcome the shadow also, because you know the shadow comes from your beloved.
Similarly, we have many things in life and we try to enjoy them; but most of the time, the enjoyment is very shallow and short-lived. Sometimes it brings another misery along. But, if we know the real happiness, then even in this life, the shadow of the real life, we also enjoy; because we know where from this life has come and we know even how to adjust the shadow to make it more real. Before, we did not know how to stand, where is the angle to make the shadow more beautiful. Now, we know. Then, we go through life contented, happy, waiting for the time to come that we can step into the eternal reality, leaving behind all this so-called suffering in the shadow world. If we do not know this real life while we are still here, it's very difficult to say whether we will know it after we leave this world. Because we don't know it, we come back again and again searching for this life, for the enjoyments that are never fulfilling, hoping to get it in the next birth, etc. Therefore, comes the reincarnation.
An enlightened person never reincarnates except of his own will for some noble purpose in order to help some other suffering brothers and sisters who are still mired in illusion. Most of the people reincarnate because of the pull of their previous tendencies from the past lives. They can't resist to be reborn because of the many unfulfilled desires, many ideals that have not been accomplished. But, using the limited knowledge, which is passed from one to another in the same world, recycled all the time, the same thing, we can't know the whole universe. We can't tackle the things from the root of its problem. It's just like we water the plants from the leaves and never the root. To be enlightened is to know the root of all things. Therefore, whatever we do is correct; and people will be also affected by us and turn into the light. Then the whole world will be bright.
Originally, when we first came here, we were living in light, happiness and glory. Then, after some time, we became entangled in the enjoyment of this world. To everything in this world, we became curious. We wanted to know, we wanted to taste, we wanted to touch, and we wanted to experience everything that was around us. Slowly, we got in contact with these material phenomena or appearances, we become more affected by the material side of nature, and we become more and more material. Eventually, we became mostly material and the light disappeared from sight. Now, the light didn't truly disappear or vanish. It just became enveloped in a gross material case. In order to find the light again, we have to break through the material barrier.
That we can do with a definite method. Just like every scientific thing, we have a method; then we can do it. Just like women can bear children and men not. Therefore, there is one way to enlightenment and the others are not so effective. The sages of old have discovered this method. Actually not discovered, the method was conveyed from heaven through different sons of God at different periods of time, to remind mankind of their glorious original state -- that they should not forget their origin and should not wallow in their suffering, which is unnecessary. So, we are here today to share with you this good news and very simple technique to break through the material cover, to get in touch with your true glory again.
M: Why? Because we just look outside, and we don't look where the spirit is. Suppose I am sitting here and you're always looking at the back door. Would you see me? No, right? That's it. I'm not hidden from you. It's just that you don't want to see me, for example. Similarly with our spirit.Q: If we are to live in a harmony, why have we created the fear that causes us to fight?
M: We do not create fear. We have fear because we do not have the power to resist fear. We have not known our greatest strength which is within ourselves. As soon as we know this, our fear vanishes. That's the best way to conquer fear -- to know our greatness, to know our strength, our super wisdom.Q: Is there any difference between God and Buddha?
M: Yes, there is dif ference; but, there isn't any difference. God is the unmanifested aspect of the cosmic power. Buddha is the manifested one. Within the Buddha, there is cosmic power. The Buddha came from the cosmic power, and also possess this cosmic power.Q: Please tell me about the role of evil in life.
M: Evil is an extra force that we have created together with other beings while having interrelationships in our life. For example, I am alone here having nothing to do and have no business with anyone. Suddenly, someone else comes. Then ask something, want to do something, then we have a misunderstanding. We create some very aggressive atmosphere and then that person probably punches me in the face.
Now, if I couldn't punch him back because of my weakness, I would try to remember that all the time, try to get any chance at all to give him back what he has given me, as a present. That breeds hatred. Hatred wasn't there in the beginning but it was created because of the interrelationship between me and that person.
That is evil. Originally, evil did not exist. Evil existed after we failed in our effort to keep to the positive side of our nature, after we failed to remember our goodness and forgiveness, after we failed the test of life.
M: No, I told you already. It's our own creation. So, similarly, we can create heaven if we want to. Every time, we extend loving kindness, tolerance and understanding to others, we create heaven.Q: Does the ego need to open to this evil or integrate it?
M: The ego does nothing. The ego is evil itself. The ego is the feeling of individual pride, of self-arrogance. Therefore, we should not even bother about that. We should know our greatness instead of being proud of our little knowledge and accomplishments. Whenever we are proud of our little accomplishments or knowledge in this life, that is when the ego comes to take place of our spirit. This is no good for us. We should do without any sense of pride or asking for reward.Q: For enlightenment, is service in love to humanity as important as meditation? Or is service more important or less important than meditation practice?
M: Both have to go hand in hand. We meditate because we want to do service better, we want to be clearer in what we do. Therefore, we'll be more efficient in our work, and more service to others. Without meditation, sometimes we have the very best intention, and we are willing to serve people, but we don't know what is the best way. Therefore, meditation is a helping factor to true selfless service.Q: Is it possible to lead a life completely free from doubt and fear forever and if so, what does one need to do or not to do?
M: Fear and anxiety come only from darkness, from ignorance, from the fear of the unknown. Once we get to know the stable side of nature, the real side of our life, our fear and anxiety disappear. We only fear because we thought after this life, we have nothing. We only fear because we know only the ephemeral existence of this world. If we know that life is eternal, if we know that we are the greatest beings in the universe, we have no fear at all. So, I invite you to get to know yourself through the means of initiation.Q: God is a concept, an idea, but it refers to that which is transcended and beyond words which are always qualifications of limitations. Infinite, universal and eternal life is only in the present. Eternity is an aspect of here. Now, thought and time block it from our experience of life. So, I think that we can only experience in the present. So, this life moment is the most important. What do you think?
M: Sure, but you do not experience it. You only repeat what other people say. Eternity is in the present time, it's true. For example: Now, I close my eyes or I don't close my eyes, I see reality, and I stay in the dual world at the same time. Therefore, I can say to myself and to you that eternity is here, now, present! But, as long as you don't see it, you only see the duality, you only see the material world. Therefore, here, now, past, present or future, it's just the same to you. The reality is different from this world, different from what we know since we were born into the material existence. So, if we don't see, we cannot claim the reality is right here and now. What we see around us now is not reality. Reality is something beyond this life, beyond what you see here, beyond the material bodies that we know. If we see it at the same time as we see this body, as real as seeing this body and this surroundings, then we can claim we see reality here and now, all the time.Q: What will happen after death?
M: I know you sincerely want to know what happens after this life. So, I will try to explain to you even though I'm not completely dead yet. I'm half-dead. (Master laughs.) With the world tour and busyness, I'm always half-dead. Anyhow, what happens after death depends on you. For example, if we are very virtuous, correct, loving and kind while we are living in this world as a human being, then after so-called death, we are taken to a deserved mansion, which is called heaven; but this is not eternal. Because our merit is not eternal, the heaven corresponding with it is not eternal. To have eternal heaven we have to find the eternal source of merits, which is the greatest kingdom within us. Which is, itself, eternal merit.
Now, if in this life we are doing the opposite things, which are contradictory to the commandments of God and below the standard of humanity, then we probably have to regress to a lower level of consciousness, of existence in order to re-experience what we lack, what we must supply to our knowledge. After some time, we will be lifted up again to a human standard.
If we are better still, above human standard, then we will be asked and we will be lifted to heaven. The initiates are the ones who will enter the eternal kingdom and will not reincarnate again onto this Earth or to any other Earthly world.Q: Dear Master, how can I get rid of bad thoughts?
M: To get rid of bad thoughts you have to replace it with good thoughts. It's very simple. You don't want to wear black, then throw it and wear white.Q: Master please talk more about the Buddha nature within us?
M: The Buddha nature (our true inner self) is the so-called supreme master's power which moves the whole universe, which makes all things alive and beautiful, which makes us wise and loving, and which leaves our body lifeless after it decides to withdraw from it, or not to use that instrument anymore. If we know this Buddha nature, there is nothing that we do not know and there is nothing that we would desire.
That doesn't mean we become a wooden stick, a wooden statue. We have all things that human beings have. We have emotion, we have feelings, and we have the taste of enjoyment of beauty, of Truth and of virtue. But, the emotions that we have now are under control. We use them whenever necessary and we withdraw them whenever we want. That is the difference between the ones who know their Buddha nature and the ones who don't.
The ones who know their Buddha nature are always in happiness. Doesn't matter in what circumstances. He may be very poor, he may be very rich, he may be in a top political position, or he may be just collecting garbage; but he will be always absolutely free of anxiety and fear, always contented in whatever situation he finds himself in. That's the difference.Q: How long must one meditate to reach enlightenment?
M: Enlightenment comes immediately. As soon as you sit down with the master and sincerely want it, it comes immediately. Before immediately event. Sometimes I have not finished the instructions, and people have already got enlightenment. Some people are in a hurry, they have no time to wait. (Laughter) But the meditation takes place daily; because we always want to be in the enlightened state, we always want to renew our acknowledgement of enlightenment, and also we want to strengthen it to expand until infinity. Otherwise, even if you meditate for one hundred years, you won't get any enlightenment. Meditation doesn't bring enlightenment, the master power does; because during initiation, or during so-called meditation in our method, you do not meditate. Meditation means effort, but in our way, it's effortless. You may sit there, sometimes even sleep, and enlightenment comes even then; or you will be enlightened during sleep. The master power will wake your soul while your mind is asleep, your body is at rest -- your soul will be awakened into the world of light and wisdom. Therefore, meditation is not a means to enlightenment; but for lack of vocabulary in this world, we have to call it meditation.
Actually, you just sit there, receive the grace of God, and acknowledge your own supreme power. There's no meditation, actually, that is involved; because anything that is earned, is a result of some kind of action, is still the worldly production, within the material framework. Therefore, our meditation is a non-meditation meditation -- effortless meditation. (Applause)Q: Dear Master, I meditate thirty minutes a day but I cannot concentrate after ten minutes. Is it because of the heavy karmas that I have? Thank You.
M: No, it's just a habit. Most of us are so used to looking outside and paying attention to outer things. So, when we try to withdraw our attention inward, it's difficult. It's used to running out again. Continue, and then you'll improve.Q: How can one who feels little love becomes more loving?
M: Get more enlightenment, and then we will be more loving. That's the purpose of enlightenment. Enlightenment makes us more loving, more tolerant, more understanding. That's the best outcome.