In my unquenchable thirst for Knowledge, I decided to follow Sri Sri around for a while. I wanted to become whatever He was. I went wherever He went, laughed whenever He laughed, sat wherever He sat, and I just hung around Him. Maybe, I just might get IT! (Whatever “it” was.)
I followed Him to a retreat in Canada. It was beautiful, and about 200 people showed up. Some of the regular devotees had spent a lot of time with Him. I decided to be one of the in-crowd and began to follow Him around.
Wherever He ended up, I made it my business to be there. If He stuck His head out, even for an instant, I was there; smiling, making chit-chat and waving. When the evening meetings were held, I made sure I sat in the front row, so He would see me with all the others that longed to be just like Him.
One day, as I was waiting for Him to come out of His cottage, I felt an acute attack of boredom. Here I was, waiting to see one of the greatest sages I’d ever met, and I was just plain bored. “What am I doing?” I thought. “Haven’t I learned anything yet? My knowledge isn’t inside of Him.
It’s inside of me. If I want to gain love, it’s going to have to come from inside of me, not from following around the ‘form’ of love.” I felt a voice say, “The kingdom of heaven is within you. Look there.”
I quickly ran back to my cabin and sat down to meditate. When I finished, I naturally went into silence. I had talked quite a bit on this course. Now, it was time to listen.
When I went to the evening meeting, I moved my backrest to the back of the hall. “Let someone else enjoy sitting near Him”, I thought. I didn’t need the proximity anymore. After all, it was all inside of me.
During the evening, people began to sing Bhajans (devotional songs) and dance. I sat in silence, enjoying them quietly. As I looked around the room everyone seemed so unbearably beautiful, I could hardly breathe. A tender wave of compassion and love washed over me.
“Dear Lord,” I prayed, “I can’t stand the beauty and I can’t stand the pain. What am I going to do? It’s all so unendurable.” With that thought, tears of compassion, relieving my predicament, began to flow.
When I calmed down, I saw Sri Sri sitting in meditation. He looked so royal and elegant, I could barely endure His radiance. An image of the Divine.
After the meeting (it was more like a celebration), I felt empty. I didn’t know what to do. Usually I went back to His cottage, to see if He’d come out. Tonight it seemed foolish, so I went back to my cabin. After awhile, I realized I wasn’t tired and couldn’t fall asleep, so I decided to go for a walk in the direction of His cottage.
As I walked by, I saw a group of people sitting on a bench just outside His door. There was room for one more, so I sat down in silence. Someone noticed how quiet I was and asked incredulously, “Are you in silence?” I felt a little foolish since most of the time I can’t stop talking.
“Yes,” I nodded as they playfully continued to chide me. “Dvorah’s in silence.” They laughed. “This must be a special night.”
I closed my eyes and continued my silence. I felt very peaceful, not caring what happened. Suddenly the door opened. There was Sri Sri holding a box of sweets. “Prasad?” (a sweet offering), He asked. “Oh, yes,” everyone gleefully answered, “Yes.”
I opened my eyes just as He began putting sweets in everyone’s waiting hands. As He walked by, He would occasionally call people by name.
“Oh, my God,” I innocently thought. “He’s actually going to give me a sweet. How wonderful!”
I held my hands open, cupped near my forehead, and sat patiently. When He approached where I was sitting, He stopped. I heard someone on the sidelines jokingly say, “Dvorah’s in silence. She’s not talking today.”
His eyes opened in a feigned expression of surprise. “Really?” He asked curiously. “How amazing!”
I began to feel very light as He continued to stand there. I felt completely rested, waiting for my precious Prasad. Then, I heard the most endearing voice. It sounded like a bell praising my name, “D-vor-ah,” it lovingly sang. “A-dor-a-ble D-vor-ah.” I swooned in loving ecstasy, still conscious of His presence.
A piece of sweet halvah touched my palms, as I slowly slid from the bench, down on my knees. I instinctively lowered my head, touching His feet. The Divine had called my name.
Isn’t it amazing that when you stop searching, you have a chance to be found. The moral of this story is very simple. If you’re looking for God – Stop! Be still. Sit down on a bench, fully at rest, with open palms. Then listen. God will find you and, in adoration, praise your name