Association with Saints Wipes out Desire
We should always remain in the company of saints. This is extremely important in the journey towards God. However, if the heart is not pure, what would be the use of even such company? Really speaking, saints should not be seen with their physical form. Their benevolent influence works not so much through the physical body, the shell through which they appear to us, as in the sadhana they prescribe for us. They are devoid of all sensuous desires, and therefore we cannot really meet them, that is, understand them truly, unless we free ourselves of such desires.
Suppose a thief goes to a saint; his eyes will naturally look out for and spot articles which can be stolen; he will understand neither the noble nature of the saint nor get to know his valuable teaching. These we shall only realize if we approach him with a pure, desire-free heart; what they give to us in that state has unequalled value indeed.
A certain person, along with many others, used to go frequently to a saint for darshan. He never mixed with others, never communicated with anyone, and always appeared deeply dejected. One day, the Master, not seeing him in the crowd, abruptly said, "Hasn't that silly child of mine come today?" At this, the man suddenly went into a rapture, started to dance in joy, and left the place, never to return. Nor did he need to return; his object had been achieved; for had the Master not called him 'mine'? It is the highest ambition of a true disciple that the Master should admit or accept him as 'his', 'his very own'.
The common disciple has not freed himself of desire; indeed quite often he approaches the guru with the very object of having some desire fulfilled and therefore he does not realize the importance of being accepted by the guru.
The guru, on the other hand, aims at completely annihilating all desire in the disciple. This can be achieved by nama-smarana, and this is, therefore, what we should do. Nama removes all anxiety and yearning for desire. When the mind baits us with one desire or another we should retaliate with nama, which is an efficient antidote. Association with a saint or even with a sincere sadhaka provides a very congenial atmosphere for nama-smarana.
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