…but remember to recognize!

IN THE GUTTER OF THE MARKETPLACE lay a dead dog, to the disgust of the passer-by. “How loathsome!” said one, and turned his head. “Pah, how he stinks!” said another and held his nose as he passed. “Look at his protruding ribs — how ugly! nauseating!” said a third. “He has not enough skin on his carcass to make even a shoestring,” said a fourth. “No wonder he came to a bad end,” said a fifth.

Then a gentle, rebuking voice broke in on the chorus of calumny, saying, “Pearls are not equal to the whiteness of his teeth!” And the people drew away whispering, “Surely that must be Jesus, for who else would say a good word for a dead dog?”

That’s the very spirit of Jesus. He loved the world so totally that he could not find any sin anywhere. He loved the world so totally that nothing was ugly to him — all was transformed into a luminous beauty.

Existence is what you project on it. Existence reflects you. If you have ugliness in your heart, you will see it everywhere. If your heart is innocent, you will see existence as virgin. You go on listening to your own echoes.

The real saint is one who cannot find the sinner in the world. But your so-called saints are just so-called. The whole world becomes full of sinners for them; they exist on condemnation. The more they condemn people, the higher they feel they are; the more they put you down, in a better way their egos are gratified.

Remember it: a real saint never meets a sinner. Even if he searches he is not going to find one. That is the definition of a real saint: one who cannot find anything ugly in existence, for whom the whole existence is transformed, transported. It is incredibly beautiful, it is utterly beautiful, it is wholly beautiful.

The moment existence becomes so totally beautiful for you, you have ,known God. God is not a person; you will never encounter him anywhere. He has no form, no name. God is a presence, but the presence can be felt only by those who have this aesthetic sensitivity, this aesthetic awareness….

Jesus could see in the dead dog something immensely beautiful. He said, “Pearls are not equal to the whiteness of his teeth.” In that whiteness, God appeared. In that whiteness the presence was felt. And you cannot even see it in a beautiful sunrise? And you cannot see it in a rose flower? You cannot see it in the face of a beautiful woman or man? You cannot see it in the innocent eyes of children? And you go on searching in the churches and the temples and the mosques — all your search is in vain.

Religion is nothing but attaining to such sensitive awareness that all is transformed into incredible beauty. Beauty is God.

Everybody is an ordinary sort of a person and everybody is carrying the divine potential – it is only a question of discovering it. And sometimes it happens without your discovering it. That’s how it has happened to you. God has knocked on your doors, although you were not waiting for him.

In India, we call God ”the guest.” But the word that we use for guest has a totally different significance, which the word ‘guest’ does not have. The Hindustani word for guest is ATITHI (अतिथी). It means someone who comes suddenly, without informing his date, his time, without even informing that he is coming. Tithi (तिथी) means date, day, time. Atithi means one who comes absolutely suddenly, without sending a telegram ahead of himself, ”I am coming.”

God is an atithi – that is one of the statements in the ancient scriptures. The other statement is also very significant: that every guest, every atithi is a god – अतिथी देवो भव: – You should treat him as a god, because one never knows– God comes in many forms. He may have come in the form of a guest, he may have come in the form of a stranger.

Just nearby Poona, just a few miles away, there was an authentic saint, Sai Baba.

Sai Baba was really a man belonging to the category of buddhas. Nobody knew whether he was Hindu or Mohammedan; one day suddenly he appeared in a village. Nobody knew what his name was; Sai Baba is not a name. Sai means saint, and baba means grandfather – grandfatherly old man, and saintly. This was not his name, because whenever people asked him his name he laughed. He said, ”Nobody is born with a name; I was also not born with a name.”

”From where do you come?”– people wanted to know from where, which village, which state. And he always laughed and he said, ”Nobody knows from where he comes– why do you unnecessarily insist on asking questions to me which nobody else can answer? From where do you come?” The truth is, nobody knows from where one comes.

He lived for almost sixty years in that village. I remembered him because of this word atithi. One of his disciples used to live three miles away from the village on his own farm and he used to bring Sai Baba’s food every day. He would prepare the food himself and bring it. Until Sai Baba had eaten the food he would remain fasting.

The disciple used to come every day to Sai Baba, and when Sai Baba would eat his food, only then would the disciple go and eat his own food. When the Master had not eaten, how could he eat? And you could not find a more irregular man than Sai Baba. Sometimes in the morning the first thing he would do was to eat his food, and sometimes late at night. On some days, he would not eat the whole day and this Hindu disciple had to wait, sometimes far into the night. The Master would eat, then he would go and prepare his own food. Because he was a BRAHMIN, he would not allow anybody else to touch his food, only then would he eat.

Sometimes the whole day there was such a crowd of visitors that there was no time for Sai Baba to take food– but the man would wait. For years he had not eaten until Sai Baba had taken the food.

One day Sai Baba said to him: Narayan, – Narayan Swami was his name – you need not bother about this. If you are a real disciple, you need not come, I will come to you. Whenever your food is ready, I will come and give you my DARSHAN there at your hut. You need not bother to come here, because you have to come three miles and then you have to go back. Now, I will do this.

The man could not believe it. He said, ”You never go anywhere …”

He said, ”Of course I will not come in the form I am, but I will come. Now it is up to you whether you recognize me or not. I will try in every possible way.”

Narayan was very happy because the Master cared so much for him. He went back dancing. The moment he was stepping down from the mosque where Sai Baba lived, Sai Baba said: “But remember to recognize!”

Narayan said: Of course, what a thing to say! How can I miss?

The next morning Narayan was very happy. He took his bath, did his worship, prepared delicious food– the Master was to come – all that he knew Sai Baba liked. A beggar came and the man said, ”It is not possible. Before Sai Baba has taken, I cannot give his food to anybody. If you want, you can come after Sai Baba has taken his food.”

Next day morning, the Master came again, but Narayan chased him out of the house – took his staff and ran after the dog, because it was no Master, it was a dog. He was very worried – nobody came. The whole day he waited and waited, but except for that dog, nobody came. It was getting late, and finally he thought, ”Baba must have joked.” So in the evening he brought the food to the mosque where Sai Baba used to live. He was very angry. He said, ”You deceived me Sai Baba, have you forgotten? I have been waiting and waiting.”

Sai Baba laughed and he said: “No, I have not forgotten. I cannot forget anything. I came, but you chased me out.” Sai Baba said, ”You should not use such words. I had come twice – once as a beggar, but you did not recognize me, and then as a dog, and you ran with a staff to beat me.”

The ancient scriptures of this country say that God is a guest, and any guest has to be treated as a god. IIअतिथि देवो भव: II In fact, everybody has to be respected as divine, because that is his essential being. You are not ordinary, you are not normal– you are divine.

Once you become available to all such experiences, more and more will be coming to you. Just don’t remain confined to the world of things and objects and money and power and sensuality. Try to become more and more a man of consciousness, awareness, sincerity and truthfulness.

Sai Baba said: If you recognize me, you would have recognized me even in a dog. What difference does it make?

If you recognize light, you would recognize it in any form. The shape of the lamp is irrelevant. Or is it relevant, the shape of the lamp? It is irrelevant, because light is light whatsoever the shape of the lamp. But you recognize the shape of the lamp, not the light.

Osho: Philosophia Perennis, Vol 1: Chapter #5: Chapter title: Beep Beep! Q1 (Excerpts)
Osho: The New Dawn: CHAPTER 23. EXISTENCE IS VERY SHY Q 1 (Excerpts)
Osho: Returning to the Source: CHAPTER 3. IT IS VERY SHARP (Excerpts)
कोई हलचल है न आहट न सदा है कोई
दिल की दहलीज़ पे चुप-चाप खड़ा है कोई………………….. ख़ुर्शीद अहमद जामी

koī halchal hai na aahaT na sadā hai koī
dil kī dahlīz pe chup-chāp khaḌā hai koī …………………KHURSHID AHMAD JAMI

No movement, no approaching sound of footsteps
someone is waiting quietly at my heart’s door.

दिल की दहलीज़ पे चुप-चाप खड़ा है कोई……and that’s when the heart will be overflowing with joy, love and gratefulness. Enjoy listening to the evergreen Love Song ‘Aaye Ho Meri Zindagi Mein’ starring Aamir Khan and Karisma Kapoor from their movie ‘Raja Hindustani’. Sung by Udit Narayan. Music by Nadeem & Shravan. Aaye Ho Meri Zindagi Mein | Udit Narayan | Aamir | Karisma | Evergreen Love Song – YouTube

7 thoughts on “…but remember to recognize!”

  1. As usual, a classic Sunday morning read!!

    The song at the end is so meaningful after reading the article….

    Thanks for sharing

  2. NRKS Chakravarthy

    “If you have ugliness in your heart, you will see it everywhere”..What a profound statement….. The world be a much better place we all internalize this statement. There won’t be any violence, riots, wars or disharmony.

    This article made .y Sunday morning more refreshing

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