The Golden Age


Interview with Cathy Starrs

As we mentioned in the article on NHQ (page 8), Cathy Starrs recently moved from Victoria to become national director of the Program Development department. Before she left, the Golden Age correspondent decided to see what she had to say after three and a half years serving Maharaj Ji in the thick of Melbourne Divine Light Mission. Kathy Starrs

How did you first become involved in doing full-time service in the Mission?

Before Knowledge, I was living in the country. When I received Knowledge I got a job and started to hang around the Mission. Nothing like full-time service existed then. Julie was the Community Director and that was all there was. But she found out that the job I was doing was as a typist. So she used to get me to do typing for her at the place where I was working. Just by doing that service I came closer and closer to everyone in the ashram and in the Mission. Eventually I moved into the ashram. Then the possibility came up of me working as a typist full-time. I liked the idea. I can't remember exactly how I felt but I remember that I wanted to work for something that had meaning. I really loved the Knowledge and I wanted to help.

During the three years that you've been in Melbourne, you've seen the Mission really develop - what do you think has been the main thrust behind it?

Really it's just the Knowledge. With the Knowledge, you can go straight there or you can get caught up in your own ideas. It applies whether you're working in full-time service or not. In the beginning we wasted a lot of time going off on tangents. It was only by slowly understanding the Knowledge that you were able to help the community grow, help the Mission grow.

In recent years the Mission as a whole has been undergoing a lot of changes. How have these changes, such as Guru Maharaj Ji's internationalisation of the Mission, manifested in the Mission in Melbourne?

It was really hard in the early days to know what Guru Maharaj Ji was saying to do and what he wasn't saying to do. But now Guru Maharaj Ji's agya is becoming much more obvious to us and that really helps the Mission to grow. He's writing us letters and saying, "Okay, now do this, now do AMP" and he actually gives us projects to work on. Now he's saying to develop the community. It gives you really clear direction on what to do within the Mission and what all the premies should do and how best to make satsang, service and meditation your life. That's a constant realisation, and Guru Maharaj Ji's agya is guiding us each step of the way. He's always really open to us. Every premie can read the letters that he sends down to us, and that's really going to make us stable because that develops trust amongst everyone.

During the time you've been here, your service has changed considerably, from office secretary to WWA coordinator to Aspirant Program co-ordinator. How has it felt to serve the premie community so directly?

It's been really good for me. I've learnt a lot. In a way, service is the way to surrender your ego. It also helps you go beyond your limitations. Whenever I'd change service, I'd always go through that horrible thing of "Oh no, I can't do it." It would really stretch me. Yet at the same time it would make practising Knowledge much more exciting again, because I was being taken beyond what I was already doing. I always enjoy the changes.

What service I found myself doing was a reflection of how the Mission was going in a way. There was a certain amount of people to do what had to be done, so I just did whatever was needed at the time, whatever was the most important thing Guru Maharaj Ji had said to do. I woudn't really mind so much whether I was doing one thing or another.

You've seen the whole process of Knowledge preparation change, from the time when people heard very little satsang to the present intensive three or four month preparation time. What effects do you think this has on the way the premie community develops?

Well, the way it's happening now, the level of understanding someone needs to receive Knowledge has been raised, so that for a while it seems that less people are going to get Knowledge. In Melbourne we put 20 aspirants through


No. 27, March 1976

the seminar and out of them, 3 have been selected for Knowledge so far. Yet the quality of the premies that you're bringing into your community is going to be incredible. When I received Knowledge in 1972, you just had to put up your hand or stay in the room long enough and that was the requisite. I didn't have a lot of understanding and a lot of the people from my Knowledge session just disappeared. Those people tend to stop other people coming to Knowledge. If a premie says, "I've got Guru Maharaj Ji's Knowledge", and he's not practising it and doesn't have any understanding, he'll just confuse anyone he talks to. It doesn't help at all.

The way the aspirant program is developing now, it's going to open the way for people to understand that what they're receiving is something very precious, very valuable in their lives and something that needs a lot of effort in order to practise. It's something they're going to need to dedicate their lives to. It's worse to give Knowledge to people who don't understand that aim than to not give them Knowledge. Because Knowledge is such a beautiful experience when you're experiencing it the way you should. It's our duty to make people understand. As premies we should develop ourselves and the aspirant program can really help us do that because when you're giving satsang you're right there, you're doing Guru Maharaj Ji's agya. You're doing the service most dear to every premie, because giving satsang is propagating while at the same time, inspiring yourself more and more. Everyone benefits.

How do you think Ira's visit has been for Melbourne?

I think it's been really good and inspiring. It's been good for me and for everyone I've spoken to. What can happen is that you can start going in one direction and at any point your mind can cloud the ex¬perience of Knowledge and you can start shifting off. Guru Maharaj Ji tells the story where you start flying and you're one degree off course. But you end up 500 miles off. Everything just gets a bit off centre. Then all of a sudden this guy comes along and he's right there. Ira was just right there for us. He was just saying, "Dedicate your life" and he was reminding us of the five commandments and four promises which we made to Guru Maharaj Ji when we received Knowledge. He was saying, "Well, you've already dedicated your life, if you remember back to when you received Knowledge. So just accept what's happening and get your mind in line with it." I think that's what he's done for all of us, just showed us that and given us the inspiration to keep on going with it.

What can you say about ashram life after living in an ashram for over 3 years now?

In a way, the ashram is really the safest place to be. It's the easiest place to be in Knowledge, because what's always getting reflected back at you is the Knowledge. Guru Maharaj Ji's agya seems so strong there. When you do service, satsang and meditation anyway, they're like the screen that protects you from your mind. Yet, living in the ashram seems to keep you in his agya and remind you all the time. You can try and have a holiday from Truth - it's impossible but you can try - and think, "Truth is when I get to the satsang hall" or "when I sit down to meditate twice a day", or "Truth is when I dedicate my ten percent." But in the ashram it seems it's becoming more a life experience, not something that you leave and come back to. You try and remain constantly attached to Holy Name. I always used to find that the ashram would take me back to nothing. There'd be nothing there externally to attract my mind. So no matter what would happen to me during the day, whether it was good or bad or whatever, maybe it would stimulate the mind to start thinking and thinking and then there was nothing there but Holy Name and time to meditate. It took me right back to just being a premie. It's a really humble thing to be a premie.

I was just thinking that we're still not very strong in the Knowledge yet. We really need all the support of ashrams. A community without an ashram would be difficult to keep constant and stable. Ashrams are really stable points. The thing about living in an ashram is that it's not you when you're there, you're like one of Guru Maharaj Ji's devotees, one of his premies. It really helps you to stay in the Knowledge.

Do you notice any differences in people coming to Knowledge now compared to one, two or three years ago?

After three days satsang - and that's how much satsang I heard - you're maybe really blissed out. But after three to six months you're getting ready to serve Guru Maharaj Ji for the rest of your life. You're not on some kind of emotional high. You're just there, trying to understand what it means that you've been lucky enough to find the Perfect Master, and realising that practising Knowledge is going to take a lot of work; in fact, your whole life dedication. Nobody understood that so much when I received Knowledge. Even over the last couple of years, nobody has been really understanding that. When you find the Perfect Master, then it's time to dedicate your life to him.

What main areas do you think the premie community in Melbourne should work on?

I think that just to really develop ourselves is the most important thing at the moment. To really understand what it means to serve. At times, it was only service that held me in the Knowledge. Every now and again the whole thing gets shaken around. If you're not holding on really tight you just drop off. Service is the way to plug in and hang on really tight. If you're doing service and feeling the responsibility of propagating Knowledge and you understand the importance of service to Guru Maharaj Ji and you're enjoying that; if you're doing meditation and getting a good experience out of it; if you're attending satsang regularly; then you're really safe in the Knowledge. You're not going to drop out.

Yet all the time premies are going away and coming back and going away and coming back. If everyone can plug in to AMP and some spare-time service in the Mission, then they're really going to grow strong. That's when the way for propagation to happen opens up. If you go out and start propagating to people, and they come in and they say to a premie, "How do you know Guru Maharaj Ji is the Perfect Master?" and the premie who's only half in there says, "I don't know," or just shakes in his boots, or says "I'll take you to the Community Director and he'll explain", then that's not the best way for it to happen. With Knowledge everyone has got the equal opportunity to experience it. We had this question and answer session with the public and Ira. They were asking questions like, "Are you sure there's only one path? Is this the real path?" At the time I was thinking that no-one else in the community could handle it. We all really need to become strong in Knowledge.

Aspirant Program

Our first Community Focus meeting on a recent Sunday afternoon explored the ins and outs of the aspirant program. A healthy number of Adelaide premies showed their eagerness to be in tune by participating.

After Sunday morning group meditation and some satsang from visiting Derek Harper, everyone enjoyed


The Golden Age

lunch in the parklands, then settled down to business.

Vic Marsh introduced the program, and outlined the steps leading up to an aspirant becoming an initiated premie.

Then the meeting split up into groups, each one led by someone directly involved in the program. The leaders filled in details, and explained the level of understanding Maharaj Ji expects an aspirant to reach.

Most premies were amazed - and even envious - of the comprehensiveness of the course, and many wanted to participate! Since the only way a premie can go through the course is in service, a goodly number have asked to be involved in various capacities.

Recently, Ira Woods has made it clear to us that we, as a community, are directly responsible for our aspirants. If we aren't clear and dedicated in Knowledge, then our aspirants will be deprived of the satsang they need to prepare themselves for initiation.

Ashram workshop

With Guru Maharaj Ji's agya for 1976 so clearly geared to maturity and synchronisation of effort, the residents of Adelaide's ashram and pre-ashram got together recently to re-examine their way of life.

After reviewing the ashram manual, premies realised that they had been tending to take advantage of Maharaj Ji's shelter without properly fulfilling their duty to be clear channels for his agya and living examples of Knowledge.

The first step towards single-pointedness was a 'resurgence of satsang as the way of relating to one another.

As one premie put it, "So what else can we do now - when our real purpose, our heart's desire, is recognised - but get right into it?"

Residents have been reshuffled, with Bob Beaver as ashram supervisor. Rob Young and Gail Murfett are housefather and housemother at the ashram, with Keith Brewster as housefather and Ben Guerin doing the cooking at the pre-ashram.

To renew their dedication, and to be together as premies, residents of both shelters now meet every Sunday night. They eat together, meditate together and give satsang to keep their new understanding fresh and clear.


In honour of Ira Woods' visit, the Adelaide Players entertained us recently with a real rootin' tootin' Wild West drama, from the pen of the tireless Barbara Woolley.

Hero of the play was the Perfect Marshall who, with his deputies, Dandy Light and Hank Harmonies, was gently guiding Kid Newborn along the first few steps of the Path.

But the darstardly Meanie McMind and his evil sidekick Sid Spaceout, had other plans. Cunningly they lured the goodies (we knew they were goodies by their white hats) out of town.

Kid Newborn's beautiful companions, Belle Breath and Nellie Nectar, were temporarily out of action. Their minds had said, "Jai satchitanand premie ji. Why don't you take a holiday?"

Which left the way clear for Meanie's jezebels, Constance Confusion and Felicity Freakout, to lure Kid Newborn into cigars and cheesecake.

But Meanie McMind is no match for the Perfect Marshall at any time. Toting a beragon instead of a gun, he won the day - and Kid Newborn.

And everybody laughed.

Knuckling down to Knowledge

News travels fast these days. but satsang and its accompanying understanding seem to have a magical hotline of their own.

As a result, the last month has found the community here knuckling down to the practice of Knowledge with renewed vigour and understanding, so that everyone will obtain the full benefit of Ira's visit.

In preparation for the meditation retreat with Ira, we got into practice last weekend at Greenwood. As usual it rained, so the choice of activities was between diving into the local creek or the ocean of bliss. Everyone seemed to have a decided preference for the ocean, inside.

Soul Foods on TV

For over a year, Michael Barton has been involved with the food co-op which serves Brisbane, the North Coast, the Gold Coast and Mullumbimby centres.

One day recently, a phone call came from an ABC television news reporter


No. 27, March 1976

who wanted to know about the Soul Foods co-op he'd heard about. A few days later, Michael found himself in front of the camera at the fruit and vegetable markets.

The film opened as the instinctively painted Soul Foods Truck - white and yellow with a coloured emblem - arrived at the markets for the morning's buying. After photographing premies testing some rock melons and loading a few of fruit into the truck, the reporter asked some questions: how the co-op started, what savings there are, and did Michael think this kind of community project would become more popular.

The interview was shown on Brisbane's 7 o'clock news one Saturday night, and on Sunday night in other areas in Queensland. A beautiful advertisement - free TV time - for another positive aspect of DLM.

A couple of days later, Michael received another mme call, this time from a lady running a morning show on ABC radio. She had seen the TV interview and thought her listeners would like to hear about the co-op. So here was another chance to present the public with an example of the co-operation that exists between people who practise Knowledge.

Children's Satsang

Children's Satsang In Sydney twice weekly an average of thirteen children attend a special children's satsang. Their ages range from 6 to 14. Eight of the thirteen have received Knowledge; the youngest premie is 6. They all give satsang; in fact you couldn't stop them because they all have something to say.

There are five aspirants but only two are eligible to receive Knowledge yet, since Guru Maharaj Ji has now stated that the minimum age for a child to receive Knowledge is 13.

Guru Maharaj Ji has asked all the premies to realise Knowledge, which means practising meditation, doing service, and listening to and giving satsang. For the premie children, meditation was always there, and service too. But although satsang was available for them to hear, it was not as easy for them to give, especially in front of so many people. A few of them did give satsang in the main hall now and then, but they always felt a bit shy. But they were experiencing Knowledge, and were eager to relate their own experience.

Children's satsang is coordinated by Rhonda Lowe. We asked her a few questions:

How does children's satsang differ from ordinary satsang?

Even though they are children that love to play, listening to their satsang it is amazing how much they understand. It's really inspiring to hear them because they're not talking like children when they give satsang. They might be in an environment where they are surrounded by children, but they still experience Knowledge as a real part of their being.

Even though the message here is the same as ordinary satsang, some of the analogies they use to explain Knowledge are their own. A few examples are:-

Satsang is really important. It's like the guide dog for the blind man, you know, the man who can't see and wants to go somewhere and the dog takes him there - but when the dog's not there, he can't get there by himself. He'll go somewhere maybe, but he'll be tripping over, falling and all. Satsang makes it easy for us to go where we want to go.

- 13 years old

At school the teacher asked me who was on my pendant, and I said "It's a really nice man. He teaches meditation. She asked me what meditation was. I said "It's something that makes you feel good" Then I couldn't describe it. She couldn't really understand, so I said "Well Miss, say some kid's racked off with your bike, and you go over to him and say 'Give me my bike back or I'll punch you in the head' Well, with Knowledge you go over and you control yourself, you meditate, get on the Word, and say calmly, 'Please give me my bike back' and be really cool."

- 10 years old

What type of service do the children do?

During the children's satsang there is music service and three of the children (two


Rawat Family Plans: Guru Maharaj Ji and Durga Ji expect another child of love.

No. 27, March 1976

premies and one aspirant) play and everyone sings along. Two of the aspirants have the service of cleaning the room after satsang, and during the weekend when their parents are doing WWA service, they spend their time cleaning the nursery. Hopefully in the near future they will be getting into making things for the nursery.

Over the Christmas period, they all came in and wrapped up the Christmas presents for children in underprivileged homes, and some of them performed a play at the Elsie Women's Refuge in Glebe. They also sometimes go on outings arranged through WWA with children from underprivileged areas. These children are always asking for the premie kids to come back. Normally these children - mainly girls - don't get along with boys, but they're always asking for the premies to come back because they experienced that they were just more gentle.

How does children's satsang operate?

We begin by doing meditation and the length generally depends on how early their parents get in. The children organise amongst themselves who is going to give satsang first and everyone who has Knowledge, gives satsang. Sometimes they might ask an older premie who is sitting in to give satsang. Occasionally there might be an evening where they don't all feel like giving satsang, so a story is read from "Tales of the Mystic East".

Where do you fit in?

My service is very much that of coordinator. If something is overlooked I suggest something, but it's coming together more and more now that they are doing more of the organising themselves. Also, they let me know who is coming, so that I know who to expect and can make sure that there aren't too many people who might put them off giving satsang just as freely as they can.

I arrange outings and answer their questions as well as communicating to their parents as to what's happening in their world, which is not much different from the general premies' world.

Also, as I'm understanding more and more that age doesn't make any difference to how a premie needs to practise Knowledge, I'm finding that a large part of my service is to encourage them to do service, satsang and meditation.

What of the aspirants?

Some of the children, because of their age, will have to wait three or four years before they can receive Knowledge and this is an opportunity for them to become really prepared by premies their own age. It's also helping them to understand why their parents want to meditate so much.

How has children's satsang developed?

Since it first started, the children have really developed and grown into experiencing this Knowledge more for themselves. At first their satsang was very much like their parents', but more and more it's becoming satsang from their own experiences. They've learnt that they have to be experiencing more for themselves through meditation if they want to give sat-sang.

As Guru Maharaj Ji said "Fourteen years is fourteen years" and even though these children are young in years, their age does not effect the quality of their experience in meditation. And it really shows in the way their satsang comes across.

At school some of the kids get really rough and before I used to get right into it and fight back. But the other day this girl started hitting me and all I could do was try to meditate on the Word. I couldn't feel anything. It was as if my face was not even hurting. My friends were calling me to hit back, but I just went on meditating. 'Cos we go to a different school now, and it's rough there, but I can't get into the arguments like I used to. I mean it's no use just beating each other up. After a while I went home. The next day my friends asked me: "How come you just sat there? Why didn't you hit her back?" I said I was trying to meditate. They know that I meditate and they know a bit about Maharaj Ji and they said: "Does it help when you meditate not to feel the pain?" and I said, "Well sometimes it really does, sometimes," 'cos I really just couldn't feel it. I saw what happened though afterwards because of the bruises.

- 14 years old

This Knowledge is really good. But sometimes it's really hard to meditate. It's even harder than Maths, and I'm pretty dumb at Maths.

- 4 years old

It's easy to meditate, but hard to fight the mind.

- 13 years old

Snowploughing in Cairns

Guru Maharaj Ji once likened WWA to a snowplough, that clears the way for satsang to come through. In Cairns, premies are beginning to see the effects of their service to society in open minds and goodwill.

The main development in WWA has been our involvement with the Community Health Service, a new Government project which organises relief for needy people. It came into operation towards the end of last year. As the Community Health Service began to find more needy people than their small staff could cope with, the overflow came to us.

Two or three jobs are referred to us weekly - usually at least one housecleaning, plus


The Golden Age

various other chores such as lawnmowing and gardening. The recipients are mostly pensioners, but there have been a few deserted wives, and alcoholics with large families.

Cairns Premies Each time we get a referral, a band of six to ten premies goes to the house on a Sunday morning armed with brooms, mops, and buckets. Between chatting to the old folk and giving each other satsang, the house is cleaned from top to bottom, and all the necessary minor repairs attended to.

Another project instigated by the Community Health Service is a Childminding Centre for school holidays. Two schoolteachers are employed to supervise but most of the activities are organised by voluntary helpers. Over the eight week Christmas holiday period, six premies attended daily Monday to Friday. Premies and children alike enjoyed games of cricket, papier mache modelling, play acting, and, most popular of all, a daily trip to the swimming pool in the big yellow ashram truck.

Our work with the Community Health Service has proved very effective in transforming the Mission's reputation as a bunch of wierdo layabouts and half-polished hippies.

In fact, the organisers of the Childminding project were so happy with our consistency that they set up a vegetarian feast as a thank-you.

Another effective public relations exercise has developed as a result of the Community Director's seafaring background. Our romance with the sea began when Chris Hammerton - a Merchant Navy dropout - arrived in Cairns in December 1973. He acquired a job scaping and painting an old hulk called the Yalata, owned by Queensland United Fisheries, a large fishing company. As a result of Chris's blissful diligence in chipping paint, the remainder of the Cairns male premie population (about five at the time) found similar employment. For the next four months, the Yalata was the principle source of revenue for Guru Maharaj Ji's Mission.

Eventually, shining with red paint and premie energy, the Yalata sailed away to reap her harvest on the high seas. But over the years, other opportunities arose for premie employment with the fishing company: there is something about a meditating satsanging serving premie that cannot be ignored, even by burly seamen. From their initial indifference, the Fisheries personnel began take a guarded interest. "Headlights" (as Chris became known, due to the fact that he claimed to see a light inside his head), shaped up as the coordinator of a large pool of ready labour. In a tourist town such as Cairns where the transient population is the bane of employers, a dependable labour pool is a veritable goldmine. DLM has not only been able to supply labour, but also a measure of personal integrity seldom seen among hardcase waterfront labourers.

The goodwill existing between Queensland United Fisheries and the Mission was so high that when the Soul Foods premies noticed an unused motor barge owned by the company, it was: time at all before it was loan to the Mission.

Since July 1975, laden with fruit and vegetables and ing premies, the barge has toured the harbour nearly every Sunday, selling at gain prices to the maritime folk living on their boat well as fifteen regular comers who rely on the for their weekly greengrocery up to thirty casual customers keep four premies busily occupied for most of the day.


No. 27, March 1976

The direct contact with premies over a period of time has changed the minds, if not the hearts of most of the harbour folk. But more than this, our efforts have created a very positive attitude toward the Mission in a large cross section of the Cairns community. As much as one third of the Cairns population is connected to the fishing industry and through our work with the United Fisheries and our diligence in the floating fruit-and-vegetable service, our reputation has become firmly established.

How I came to Knowledge

Like a lot of students, I went to University because I couldn't think of anything better to do. But soon study for me became more than just a way of filling in my time. It became a 'search' - although of course I didn't call it at the time - for something I was not even sure existed but which I called the 'nature of man'.

I sensed, as we all do that there is something within each person that is his true nature. This nature seemed to be awakened at certain times. There were certain lines of poetry, certain songs which would touch me. At these times I would feel that I was really someone very different from the "self" I usually identiified with and so I began to attempt to understand this other self. Just like someone beginning on a long and exciting journey, I was full of enthusiasm. I enrolled in Psychology and the study of English Literature. Psychology seemed to be an objective and scientific approach to the study of life while literature seemed to be a more direct expression of man's innermost feelings.

Being hopeful and enthusiastic, I put a lot of time into study and I got a lot out of it. My understanding - at least on an intellectual level - was growing in leaps and bounds, and I was really beginning to feel that I had found something that I could put my energies into and benefit not only myself, but perhaps even other people as well.

Then two things happened. The first was that I started to engage in real research of my own. Our class was working under the direction of someone who was a prominent researcher and he, not realising our fairly low level of understanding of the field, took us straight into the middle of research that he himself was working on. The effect on me was shattering. I felt as if I was in the middle of unknown territory, and worse still, it seemed that everyone else was in the same position. So many opinions were held by different people researching what we were researching, so many theories were being developed and yet no one really seemed to know the truth of the matter. So I began to understand, much to my disappointment, that much of the knowledge I was gaining was subject to doubt and differences of opinion, and that it was bound to change in time as new information was gathered.

The second thing that I became aware of as I studied more, was that in studying 'man' as psychologists described him and in reading about the nature of man that writers and poets have talked of through the ages, I seemed to be looking at two entirely different beings. Obviously, each approach was offering just one viewpoint - one perspective on the same thing. Together they were like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle which did not fit together and which gave no real impression of the complete picture I wanted to see.

More and more it became obvious to me that in study I was not finding the way to understand the nature of man. I found that I was faced with the possibility of spending a lifetime investigating one point of view of man's nature, only to find that no matter how much I understood that one aspect, I would never see the whole picture. And worse still, I could not even be sure that all the understanding I gained in my own field would not be contradicted by a later generation of investigators.

So what was I to do? I became very philosophical about the matter. I tried to convince myself that there was no "the" way to understand myself and the nature of man, that this had just been a vain hope of my youthful imagination. I told myself that life was just a compromise, in which questions were never really answered, and in which you simply did the best that you could by muddling along in your own way in the company of people who were in much the same position that you were.

Of course, some part of me still longed to know that 'other self, that real nature I had at times had glimpses of, but most of the time I just carried on with my compromise life and never really questioned what I was doing.

Then one day I happened to be looking through some magazines when I came upon a leaflet that seemed to speak to that part of me that still wanted to know itself. That hope that I had been suppressing for so long was reawakened. Maybe after all, the way did exist in spite of everything around me that seemed to contradict the possibility, and in spite of what I had tried to teach myself to accept.

I can't remember the exact words of the leaflet, but it said something to the effect of "… while we seek to gain knowledge from the external world, through science, through philosophy or art, we will never really understand what we are seeking to understand. There are an infinite number of facts to be mastered in an infinite number of fields of enquiry. Yet even if we were to know all these, still there is so much more to be discovered that man has not even touched on."

This was much the same conclusion I had come to myself. Yet here was a solution being offered. If I wanted to know something in its entirety, if I wanted to see the whole picture - I could never do it by looking at the external manifestations of that thing. I would have to know its essence. And the essence of everything that I ever wanted to know was just one thing, and that one thing I could experience within myself by the Grace of a living Perfect Master.

On looking back, it seems strange that I did not immediately ask for that 'one thing' called Knowledge. In fact, it took me several months to face the reality that the thing I had always wanted to know, was available to me. Yet even when we have Knowledge, it seems that so often we forget that this is what we have always longed for, what we have searched for in so many different ways. But gradually, the realisation dawns on us that we are travelling towards that place where we always wanted to go; that we are on the path that will take us there and all we have to do is walk on and watch the whole mystery unfold before us as we advance.