The first question:
You talk a lot to us about how important satsang is, being in the presence of an enlightened, liberated man.
Yet a lot of your sannyasins spend most of their lives away from you.
If it was up to you would you have all of us live here in Pune with you
all the time?
No. Because to be in the presence too much can be an overdose. Rather than helping it can hinder you. Everything should always be in proportion and in balance. It is possible when something is sweet that you can eat more of it than you should. You can forget your need; you can overstuff yourself. And satsang is sweet it is the sweetest thing in the world. In fact it is alcoholic…you can become a drunkard. That will not liberate you; that will create a new bondage.
Being near a master can either become a bondage or a liberation, it depends. Just by being near, there is no necessity that you will be liberated: you can get indigestion; and you can become addicted to the presence. No, that is not good. Whenever I feel that somebody needs a space of his own, whenever I feel that somebody needs to go away from me, I send him away. It is good to create hunger, then satiety goes deep. And if you are with me too much you may become even oblivious of me. Not only indigestion, you may completely forget me.
Just the other day Sheela was saying that when she was in America she was closer to me. Now that she is here she feels thrown far away. How it happens? She was much troubled, puzzled. It is simple. When she was in America she was constantly thinking about me, of coming here to be near me. She was living in a dream. In that dream she felt close to me. Now that she is here, how can she dream? I am there in reality; dreams are no longer needed. And I am so much here that she has started forgetting about me – that’s why she is feeling so far away.
Things are complex. Sometimes I send you away to feel me more. It is needed. A separation is needed so that you can come close again. There must be a rhythm of being with the master and not being with the master. In that rhythm many possibilities open because, finally, you have to be on your own. The master cannot be with you forever and forever. One day suddenly I will disappear – “dust unto dust.” You will not be able to grope for me. Then, if you have become too addicted to me and you cannot be without me you will suffer, unnecessarily suffer. And I am here not to give you suffering; I am here to make you capable of more and more bliss. It is good sometimes that you go far away in the world, have your own space, move in it, live in it.