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Surrender with trust

 Immense trust leads to surrender. Surrender is simplicity of the heart. It is the knowing that you do not have to decide about the Truth, that you just have to go by it. When you awaken to the powerful presence of the Truth, surrender happens.

If you observe your pet dog, you will find that even if you cheat him once in a while, he will come back to you with utmost trust. His trust is absolute and innocent. The trust comes with no reason. He has no questions, so no answers need to be given. He sees no utility in anything. He just exists like an open book, that’s all.

Two gold fish were in a water tank. One asked the other, ‘Do you trust in god?’

 The other replied, ‘But of course. Who do you think changes our water everyday?’

It is only innocence that is capable of taking the leap into trust and surrender. Knowledge somehow sees utility in everything. It looks for reason in everything. Surrender and reason are mutually exclusive. Surrender is to do with trust. Surrender is possible only out of innocence, because out of innocence arises trust.

With trust arises acceptance as well. Acceptance does not mean compromising to life, situations and persons. No. It means welcoming life and all its forms as a wonderful gift from Existence. Each person or situation is a fresh happening. Accepting it at a deep level is surrender. People and situations have to be handled with the required tact. But the spontaneous and deep acceptance of the moment is surrender.

Acceptance is the deep humility towards the profound Existence that takes care of everything including you. It is again saying ‘yes’ to Existence. When you say yes, you are acknowledging the presence of the allpervading life force that is conducting this universe. That is surrender.

Out of surrender arises deep relaxation. Out of surrender arises a fresh intelligence that knows on a different plane. On this plane, there is no worry of result, there is only action driven by pure energy. And energy is intelligence. Trust does not mean inaction. It means continuing to be in action with intelligence instead of intellect. It is having trust in thought, and intelligence in action.

A disciple came riding on his camel to the tent of a Sufi master. He dismounted from the camel, walked into the master’s tent, bowed down low and said, ‘Master, so great is my trust in god that I have left my camel outside untied, convinced that god protects the interests of those who love him.’

The master shouted, ‘Go tie your camel you fool! God cannot be bothered doing for you what you are perfectly capable of doing yourself!’

Trust is an attitude. It is not a substitute for appropriate action. The spirit of trust is the essence of the very life. It leads to innocence, surrender, relaxation and bliss.

If it is followed out of complete understanding, there is nothing to lose in its path. Until then, you are still on the path to trust.

All great enlightened beings are eternally blissful because they have surrendered their very body to Existence with trust. Existence flows through them like air flowing through hollow bamboo creating music. That is why they are so beautiful. When Existence flows through, the expression is divine. Enlightened master’s grace is the grace of the whole of Existence. They are the only utterly innocent beings on planet earth.

Enlightened masters are established in the knowing that nothing is impossible in the space of Existence. They are living embodiments of trust. Their bliss is an expression of this. They have access to all the knowledge of the world but are yet utterly innocent. They know that their knowledge is the knowledge of Existence. Their knowledge is not knowledge but a flowing experience of the truth of the moment.

We too have knowledge. But the problem is that we think our knowledge is the only right knowledge and all other knowledge is wrong. Understand, the ultimate knowledge is the same for everyone. Anything in between is just a bunch of borrowed ideas. If this is known clearly, surrender will happen and we will drop the burden of knowledge and become innocent.

How to start knowing that we don’t know? Mere clarity that we don’t know is enough. Just meditate on Existence, the source of all knowledge. Be in a prayerful and surrendering mood to it all the time. Be firm in surrendering to the knowledge of Existence. You will see that miracles start happening around you. There is a story about Hanuman*, the monkey god in Hindu mythology who was a devout disciple of lord Rama*.

 Hanuman* was once asked what day of the lunar month it was.

He replied, ‘I don’t know anything about the day of the month or the positions of the stars. I think of Rama* alone.’

When you are established in the wonder of the Truth, you become so innocent, that your very life becomes meditative and miraculous. It was Hanuman* who crossed the ocean from India to Sri Lanka with just one leap by chanting the name of Rama*. Rama himself had to build a bridge to cross over with his army! Such is the power of innocent surrender to Existence and all its forms.

When one is established in surrender to the Divine, miracles happen every moment. People are always in search of miracles. The biggest miracles happen with surrender. There is a wonderful story from the life of Shirdi Sai Baba*, a great enlightened master from India.

In the mosque, Shirdi Baba *used to light the lamps everyday. He used to light them symbolically for the destruction of the darkness of ignorance in humanity. But people would think that he loved lighting the lamps.

Baba used to get the oil from the oil merchants. After some time, the oil merchants decided that they would not part with the oil free of cost. They all got together and decided not to give Baba oil any more.

Baba though aware of this decision, pretended not to know about it and went the following day to get the oil. The merchants refused to give him oil.

Baba returned to the mosque smiling.

The villagers and the oil merchants however got curious as to how he would light the lamps. They gathered around him.

Baba filled the lamps with water and lit the wicks. They burnt with more brightness than usual emitting radiance of a different plane!

The oil merchants were amazed and shocked. They begged for forgiveness, and of course Baba forgave them.

 Surrender is allowing Existence to happen through you. Enlightened beings enjoy the play of Existence through them. They enjoy it with the utter innocence and awe of a child. That is why they are so delightful to watch.

One more thing: when you are trusting and surrendering, it becomes difficult to cheat you. Innocent trust always protects from deceit. It radiates that kind of energy. In our ashram, people from all walks of life come together to live. Once they enter the ashram they develop a sense of deep trust. The very decision to take the jump from the material world to the spiritual world as an ashramite* comes from trust. Further, when they enter the ashram and start living, sharing their things with other seekers, there is such trust that no one cares to keep anything under lock and key! The room may be filled with strangers but still there is no thought to keep one’s possessions locked. Nothing gets lost. Even if something cannot be found, the very attitude is such that it doesn’t matter to them! That is the beauty of it.

There was a great Sufi Saint by name Habib Ajami. He went to bathe in the river one day leaving his coat on the bank of the river unattended. One man passed by at that time and saw the coat. Thinking someone had left it there carelessly and it had to be protected, he decided to stand guard over it till the owner came by.

 Habib came back looking for his coat. The man asked him, ‘In whose care did you leave the coat when you went to bathe?’ It might as well been stolen!’ 

Habib replied, ‘I left it in the care of Him who gave you the task of guarding over it!’

When trust happens with the utmost understanding, nothing can be lost. In the quality of trust is its true essence. I always tell my disciples about the monks I have seen in the Himalayas during my spiritual wandering days. The monks come to the Himalayas to meditate leaving everything behind. But there they fight for their small water pots! Just the object of possessiveness changes, that’s all! When you trust, all material possessions will seem like they belong to Existence. The very attitude of possessing then drops. That relaxes the mind. That is the space for relaxing.

In the year 2004, we went as a small group to the Himalayas. In a lifetime at least once you should visit the Himalayas. We went to Gomukh*, which is the source of the sacred river Ganga. The trek is on mule back taking almost five hours up and five hours down. The path is just four feet wide. If you miss your footing you will go into the gushing Ganga river beneath! Once we reached Gomukh* we spent some time there, and the group returned while I stayed back with a few disciples. The group that returned started at dusk. I told them not to worry and that Existence will take care. Through pitch darkness, not knowing if the mule was taking the bend of the mountain or going straight ahead into the darkness, the entire group made its way back. The next day, I asked them how the experience was. One of them said, ‘Swamiji, we experienced what blind trust means!’ If those trusting moments could be extended, they can be the very essence of your life. Then, you can simply do, leaving the result to Existence.

Just seeing the Himalayan mountains can help trust and surrender take root in you. The mountains straightway tell you that Existence is mightier than the intellect! They tell you that intellect cannot fathom their majesty. When this truth happens, the struggle ceases. The mind stops. If you wander in the Himalayas for some time you can experience that bliss is not a goal at all but the path itself. You realize that bliss is in the moment and not in any goal. When you come to the present moment you are open and innocent because there is no mind in the present. For the mind to exist there has to be movement towards the past or the future. In the present moment, there is no past or future. It is just there, that’s all.

To be trusting and surrendering is like losing the ‘I’ and the ‘mine’. Ego starts with ‘mine’ and then moves to ‘I’. Even before the identity of ‘I’ sets in, the ‘mine’ comes into play. If you notice a small child, even before the ‘I’ takes root in him, he will fight for ‘mine’. Just try pulling a toy from his hand. He will resist! It is his, you cannot take it away. Even before he talks ‘I’, he will talk ‘ m i n e ’ . Surrender is nothing but merging with E x i s t e n c e , with no identity of ‘I’ or ‘mine’. Surrender is death of the mind, death of ego. Ego is nothing but feeling yourself to be a separate entity from Existence. This feeling happens as a result of a strong ‘I’ and ‘mine’. The mind is a direct conflict to the being. The being always concurs with Existence. The mind invariably comes in the way. The being knows. The mind doubts. The being always says yes. The mind mostly says no. The being is innocent but the mind is cunning. Saying yes is like death for the mind. So it continues to say no. With persuasion it says yes. If left to itself, it says no. Now you will ask, ‘How to silence the mind?’ You cannot silence the mind through the mind. It is like expecting the suspect to surrender! It will never happen. You just need to understand that the mind is not a reality. It is a just a myth. You are holding on to something unreal and trying to silence it. If you bring awareness to this process that is going on within you, you will be able to see where the mind is saying no. Then you will be able to put it to rest so that the yes of the being is heard. Awareness is the key to anything. Just bring in awareness. The resistance of the mind will then drop. You will then relax into the being. Innocence starts expressing from there.

Unless innocence happens intimacy cannot happen. Intimacy is the language of Existence. The mind doesn’t know intimacy. Only the being knows it. With intimacy there is openness and you can say and do everything that you feel genuinely and earnestly about. There will be authenticity in your words and actions. You will radiate energy that spurs the others around you to be innocent and open. Then the real beauty of Existence can be experienced.

Glossary:

* Hanuman – The monkey god revered by Hindus and a disciple of Rama.

* Rama – Prince of the kingdom of Ayodhya in the Hindu epic Ramayana.

* Shirdi Sai Baba – An enlightened master worshipped by Hindus and Muslims alike. Lived in Shirdi near Nasik,India.

* Ashramite – Resident of ashram.

* Gomukh – Source of sacred river Ganga in India.

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