Excerpts from Maharaji's presentation at one of the six Rejoice '87 gatherings, Snowmass, Colorado, July 6, 1987
We certainly have been through a lot these past two days. Hopefully, we were able to let go of some stuff, get a handle on life and see that Knowledge is a precious gift. This life is a precious gift. And it's ours! We cannot dream it away. It is not going anywhere. It has been given to us, and yet we live like zve are the ones to decide when we are going to leave this gift. We do not.
There comes a time in every human being's life when reality has to supersede everything else. I'm talking about the inner self. I'm talking about the human being that lives on this earth and is a part of this universe. I'm talking about
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the human being who is here, who can experience a beautiful experience now for himself.
I have seen many things in my life, but there is only one thing I can speak about that is truly constant - and that is this experience. And yet we take it for granted! We think that no matter what we do, it will still be there. That's just not true. Unless we make a deliberate effort to practice Knowledge, we are truly not worthy of expecting results.
It is paramount that we start understanding what a gift we have been given and how important it is to practice it deliberately rather than haphazardly.
Maybe what I am about to say to you is going to be an incredible revelation in your practice of Knowledge: "Who are you?"
Think about it. You are not a mistake. It took 4.5 billion years of evolution so you could be here. That's a lot of years. We don't like changes, do we? But, my friends, if it wasn't for the changes, we wouldn't be here!
I know some of you came here with fears. I know some of you experienced frustration. Some experienced disappointment, while others experienced joy. It's alright. We have almost lived a lifetime in these past two days. And what have we learned? To proceed! My advice to everyone is really to go on. Time and tide wait for no one. Goon. Go on in your enjoyment. Go on in your experience. What a blessing that we can experience this in our lifetime! It's not a joke. It's not to be taken lightly. Beyond survival, it brings joy to life. It brings celebration and rejoicing. Yes! And that is why we are here.
And the festival continues - whether you walk or wait at a bus stop with remembering and longing in your heart. Is longing all that removed from love? Love is not longing. But is longing that removed from love? Is it not love that proves the longing? Is it not longing that proves the love? Don't both go hand in hand? Flow beautiful it is to long to sit down and practice again and to smile even as you stand at that bus stop, knowing your time is coming in just a couple of hours.
People say to me, "What happens when I am up against a hard situation?" Look to the left of you and look to the right of you. You know what you will find? Two shoulders. One on each side. Yours. There is no problem that we cannot tackle. No problem was ever so big that we could not bust through and solve it. Use your shoulders. Use yourself.
understanding what a gift we have been given and how
important it is to practice it deliberately rather than haphazardly."
Here's a quote from Kahlil Gibran I'd like to share with you:
"You work that you may keep pace with the earth and the soul of the earth. For to be idle is to become a stranger unto seasons, and to step out of life's procession that marches in majesty and proud submission towards the infinite. When you work you are a flute through whose heart the whispering of the hours turns to music. Which of you would be a reed, dumb and silent, when all else sings together in unison? Always you have been told that work is a curse and labor a misfortune. But I say to you that when you work you fulfill a part of the earth's furthest dream, assigned to you when that dream was born. And in keeping yourself with labor YOU are in truth loving life. And to love life through labor is to be intimate with life's inmost secret. But if you in your pain call birth an affliction and the support of the flesh a curse written upon your brow, then I answer that naught but the sweat of your brow shall wash away that which is written. You have been told that all life is darkness, and in your weariness you echo what was said by the weary. And I say that life is indeed darkness save where there is urge, and all urge is blind save when there is knowledge, and all knowledge is vain save where there is work, and all work is empty save when there is love; And when you work with love you bind yourself to yourself, and to one another… And what is it to work with love? It is to weave the cloth with threads drawn from our heart, even as if your beloved were to wear that cloth. It is to build a house with affection, even as if Your beloved were to dwell in that house. It is to sow seeds with tenderness and reap the harvest with joy, even as if your beloved were to eat the fruit. It is to charge all things you fashion with a breath of your own spirit."
Enjoy that duality of life! Don't look at it as, "Oh God, how am I going to succumb to these problems in my life?" Life is yours. You've got it. Don't say, "I have to." Say, "I want to!" Enjoy sitting and enjoy Knowledge. Gather your strength, gather yourself, and stand erect as the Creator meant you to stand-with two very large shoulders of your own. Say to yourself, "I will accomplish what I need and want to accomplish. Knowledge is my joy. Knowledge brings me that joy and I will gladly give it the very best in return." The experience that Knowledge brings is never mediocre. When the Creator created you He didn't create mediocrity. Now is not the time to go backward. Now is the time to go forward and take that step in confidence and trust. Trust yourself and say, "Yes, I can do it."
There was a time when people used to walk away from a Knowledge session thinking, "Wow, it's so beautiful, but I don't know if I can do it." Maybe today, we can walk away with a feeling of, "Wow, it's beautiful and I can do it." Maybe that would be one of the greatest revelations ever to have taken place.
Some people have not practiced Knowledge. I really mean it when I say, "I don't care." I'm not here to judge you. I'm here to teach you! I'm not giving you quizzes. This is not an exam. This is not a test. This is a moment of joy. I stand humbled before any human being who has taken on the endeavor of Knowledge. I definitely stand humbled before any person who has taken the challenge upon themselves to play, to rejoice, to be a part of the Creator's most incredible festival, rather than just be an observer. Not too many people take on this endeavor. For some people it suffices to stand back and giggle at everything. But then there are those who take on the challenge. It is a challenge because its beauty is unprecedented. It is a challenge because it requires a commitment which is unprecedented. It is a challenge to be able to say that all the joy Knowledge brings I shall contain within me.
What is Knowledge? What are its peculiarities? To share, but not give anything away. To enjoy without giving any of your joy away to anyone. Other things are not
Enjoy sitting and enjoy Knowledge. Gather your strength,
gather yourself, and stand erect as
the Creator meant you to stand."
like that. When people get married, they make a commitment to another person. When you have children, you make a commitment to another person. When you take on a business, you make a commitment to so many other people. Knowledge is the only thing in this entire world that I know of that asks you to make a commitment to yourself.
There's another Gibran quote I Would like to read to you: "My soul spoke unto me and counseled me to love all others, to love all that others hate and to befriend those whom others defamed. My soul consoled me and revealed to me that love dignifies not alone the one who loves, but also the beloved. Unto that day love was for me a thread of cobweb between two flowers close to one another, but now it has become a halo with neither beginning nor end, encircling all that has been and waxing eternally to embrace all that shall be."
Really, it is like that. Our openness, our commitment, our desire, our feeling, our want, and our time to practice Knowledge are the keys to success.
I've really enjoyed these two days. I hope you did. I have one more quote for you-mine. "Why settle for the sky when you can have the universe? Don't ever put a limit on your enjoyment."
So please, enjoy and enjoy and enjoy. Remember, there's a beautiful cup inside of you that gets filled when you practice Knowledge.
Thank you very much.