MEHER BABA ON PERFECTION
Out of millions of souls, only one becomes Perfect. Perfection entails unimaginable hardships and sufferings. The Perfect man can bestow divine consciousness, the experience of infinity, upon anyone in the twinkling of an eye. The Perfect man bestows conscious divinity, at the right moment, upon those who have an age-old connection with him.
To clarify this: suppose a man has suddenly risen to wealth. After becoming rich, however generous he may be, he will not distribute his riches to every poor person in the world. He will give it to the selected few who are closely connected with him. Further, suppose that this wealthy man is driving in his car and passes a pauper lying beside the road. He will either leave him there, or stop and hand him some money.
But if he comes across a poor man and discovers him to be his long-lost brother, how will he react then? Despite the importance of his errand and the inherent nature of his position (working to gain more wealth), he will stop the car, and without the poor man’s asking, he will take him in his car to his house, and keep him there in luxurious comfort.
The same is true in the spiritual Path. To acquire the gift of divine knowledge, a person must have a close connection with a Perfect Master.
The key to the world is only one, but it is in the hands of the five Perfect Masters.
For example, a safe has only one key, and no other key can unlock it. The five Perfect Masters control the safe – the world.
One Master is the keeper of the key, without which the safe cannot be opened. The second guards the safe, which cannot be opened without his prior consent. The third is the one who alone has the authority to use the key to unlock the safe. The fourth is the one who has the right to distribute the riches in the safe. And the fifth Master is the one who has the power to authorise the distribution.
Thus, there is only one key to the world, equally shared among the five Masters. The five Perfect Masters, plus the 51 other God-realised souls (Majzoobs and Jivanmuktas) control the key. The 51 are members of the parliament of the five Perfect Masters. 51 plus five equals 56. This number 56 never changes.
In this way the game of the world goes on and on. All this I am telling you is a secret.
12 June 1926,
Good and bad thoughts, feelings, words and actions are all due to the working of the mind. If the mind vanishes, one realises the highest self.
Just as they are the givers of light, Sadgurus or Qutubs are also the givers of thoughts. Not only can they predict certain actions, but they can tell what will happen years into the future, even before it is created in the mind of an individual. For they are one with the universal mind which gives light, thoughts and everything.
Hence, they not only predict, they also predestine. Things actually become divine will according to the Perfect Masters’ will or wish.
10 December 1929,
Every God-realised personality is Perfect. However, those who come down and act as Masters – the Sadgurus and Avatar – come down with their minds universal, and use divine powers to work for others. There is a place, Vidnyan Bhumika, where the Masters work and rest. It is similar to a threshold in between two places, where they can manage works both for the higher and lower worlds. One aspect is the preparation of souls from the lower world and the deliverance of them to the higher world, eventually Realising them. The Masters come down with the special purpose of bringing ripe souls to the highest state.
When the Perfect Masters come down with this duty to the world, and work every day with the people of the world, they descend with universal mind. Through the universal mind, they take upon themselves the sins (bad sanskaras) of the ripe souls, and thereby suffer themselves. They experience bliss through the soul, and suffering through the mind. They enjoy the bliss through the soul, which is one with the Almighty, and bear the universal suffering through their universal mind.
15 December 1929,
There is always a struggle between the spirit and the flesh, and the soul witnesses the struggle. If the spirit succumbs to the flesh easily, without protesting, then there is no hope. If the spirit gives in after struggling, there is hope. But if the spirit wins over the flesh, victory is eternal. Yet it is the struggle itself that gives Perfection. So let us struggle now.
10 May 1937,
to his Western followers at Nasik
Q. For an aspirant to the Path in search of a Master, is there any infallible method of recognising a Perfect Master?
Baba: Spiritual attainment to the planes one may not satisfactorily allocate or discriminate. All those from the first to the sixth plane come under the general category of advanced souls, more or less. But when luckily one comes into contact with Perfection, there are unmistakable signs for a seeker of Truth who is patient and sincere.
There are three important factors that are characteristic of the state of Perfection.
First, Perfection is not only oneness with God, but the continued and uninterrupted experience of oneness in everything. A Perfect Master continuously, without any break, experiences or realises his own self as the self in all. This inner experience objectively manifests itself in the spontaneity of love that such a one feels or expresses towards all creation. To him, nothing is attractive or repulsive; good, bad, saint, sinner, beauty, ugliness, wisdom, idiocy, health, disease, are all different modes and moods of his own manifestation. When embodied Perfection loves, fondles, feeds any living creature, it feels and enjoys as if it is loving, fondling and feeding its own self. In this state no vestige of otherness is left.
The second point is the undeniable atmosphere of bliss that Perfection radiates in its immediate vicinity, and which a visitor cannot help feeling or noticing. A Perfect Master not only enjoys infinite bliss, but also experiences universal suffering. The poignancy of suffering, however, is nullified and subdued by the overwhelming joy or feeling of bliss. Hence Perfection outwardly always appears blissfully calm and unperturbed in the face of every kind of pain, persecution and penury.
The third most outstanding characteristic of Perfection is its power to adapt itself to any level or strata of humanity. It is as nonchalant on a throne as it is obviously indifferent and undisturbed in a gutter. It is impecunious with the poor, extravagant with the rich, lordly with kings, wise with the learned, and naively simple and innocent with the illiterate and ignorant.
Just as a Master of Arts delivers or teaches English in a different way to a beginner than to an undergraduate, similarly, a Perfect Master adapts himself to the level of the one whom he wants to uplift spiritually. Each one according to his need, and each one according to his aptitude, is the perennial plan of personified Perfection.
before May 1939,
also MJ May 1939.
Another version: GS p262
penury = poverty ; impecunious = poor
Q. Why does a Master fall ill and make use of medicine?
Baba: The West differs from the East in its ideal of Perfection. The West believes Perfection to signify the possession and use of psychic powers.
A yogi can do all the juggling by using psychic powers. He can abstain from food, go without sleep, leave the body at will, or stop breathing, etc. Spiritually considered, a simple, human, good man who works in the world selflessly for others is much better, and stands higher, than many yogis with all their powers of performing miracles, which are nothing but juggling, without any spiritual importance at all. Because whatever a yogi does is for his own individual self, and hence he is not selfless. He overcomes one illusion by creating another illusion, which differs fundamentally from the teaching and work of a Perfect Master.
A Perfect Master, who has to take upon himself the burdens of the world to absorb them, must necessarily have physical reactions, and consequently must suffer physically like an ordinary human being.
Krishna, Muhammad and Jesus were Perfect. By submitting themselves to the law of action and reaction, they established that law, and were selflessly and willingly subject to it. But in spite of subjecting themselves to this law, they stand above the law. They could in a second have cured themselves or rid themselves from action and reaction.
Perfect Masters absorb the dual effect of the universal illusion by taking humanity out of the illusion, through liberating mankind from the bonds of action and reaction. The Perfect Master absorbs, in his true existence, duality, in order to sublimate it.
Ramakrishna had cancer, and he could in one instant have cured it with his spiritual powers. Jesus several times fainted on the cross, which he could have avoided but it was a necessary demonstration for the good of humanity. Baba has abstained from fish, eggs and meat, not for his benefit, but to create and impress on humanity an example which later, when he speaks, will become an established law.
31 October 1937,
Gl Aug. 1970 p15-16
also LA p215-216, and LM6 p2232
There are 56 Perfect Ones in the world at all times. They are always one in consciousness. They are always different in function.
For the most part, they live and work apart from and unknown to the general public. But five, who act in a sense as a directing body, always work in public, and attain to public prominence and importance. They are known as Sadgurus or Perfect Masters.
In Avataric periods, the Avatar, as a supreme Sadguru, takes his place as the head of this body, and of the spiritual hierarchy as a whole.
1938, India, Di v1 p3
Just as everything in the domain of duality is based on degrees, so also is perfection based on degrees when concerned with duality. Good and bad, virtue and vice, strength and weakness are all based on degrees when considered in relation to duality. Bad and good, vice and virtue, weakness and strength are all aspects of duality. But in reality, all are a degree of oneness in duality. Evil is not evil, but the lowest degree of good. Similarly, weakness is not weakness, but the lowest degree of strength.
Perfection also has degrees when compared with imperfection. Therefore one perfection in duality does not include every perfection. He who is perfect in science is probably not perfect in singing, and one perfect in singing will not be perfect in painting. So all these perfections are in the field of duality. Have you ever heard of perfect crimes? When murder is so cleverly perpetrated as not to leave a single clue behind, it is called a perfect crime. So even in crimes and so-called sins, there is perfection.
But spiritual Perfection is not in the domain of duality. All these relative perfections explained come within the scope of intellect, but the perfection of spiritually Perfect souls is beyond intellect. When one is Perfect spiritually, one experiences that nothing except God exists – he alone exists. To a Perfect being, everything that exists under the intellect and under the domain of duality is illusion. So for the Perfect man, nothing exists but God. Science, art, music, weakness, murders are all dreams to him. His knowledge, his Perfection, is one indivisible existence.
When this Perfect soul, for spiritual reasons, wants to use all his power and knowledge, he does it purely for the spiritual good of others. He then applies his universal mind in that subject and knows all. To express everything outwardly is not necessary, but he does know everything. How? All languages have their root in the Mental world of thought, and are then expressed orally. But he, the Perfect man, knows the mind of everyone. He knows the purport of every thought before it is uttered. So it is with everything, science, art, etc. If he wants, he can know it even before it is actually manifested. But he does that only when he thinks it necessary.
… Perfection include all perfections, but there is no need to express them. Krishna was Perfect spiritually. That means he was perfect in everything, but he never showed his perfection materially because that material manifestation of perfection has no meaning, and is in the realm of illusion. He could have shown himself a perfect drunkard, a perfect sinner, a perfect rogue, but that would have shocked the world. So he did not express that. He was a perfect drunkard, perfect sinner, perfect rogue, perfect in everything. He must have been, because he was, above all, perfect God.
… When it is necessary, these Perfect souls express their Perfection in everything. For the spiritual benefit of the world, I can be perfect in any mode of life I have to adopt, not merely to show perfection, but for my work. Every aspect of life is contained in the highest state of Perfection: perfection in the world, perfection in yoga, perfection in attachment, perfection in detachment.
Perfection has both the human and divine qualities in full, and expresses itself in high and low alike. A Perfect man has infinite love, inviolable spirituality, and greatest sense of humor. He comes down to the level of the devotee, and yet is all the time the Master.
1948? Meherazad? HM p28
Another version: LM9 p3223
The Perfect Ones, who retain normal consciousness and the body, even after realising the unchanging and absolute Truth, dwell eternally in divine love, which transcends all duality and all understanding. They enjoy abiding and unassailable peace, for they have arrived at the final goal of all creation.
1952, GM p198-199
There are individual as well as national and universal problems which need the spiritual guidance of Perfect Masters and Avatars. Age after age these God-men guide humanity through their divine messages. Even after the absence of their physical bodies, these messages are carried to the remotest corners of the world by their disciples, devotees and followers, who spread the beloved’s word even at the cost of life.
The Avatars and Perfect Masters give their divine guidance and protection to the human race and the world in their own unique and imperceptible ways, which are beyond the grasp of the human intellect.
The Perfect Masters are the true saviours of mankind, and not of the selected few only. Their love and grace alone sustain the universe.
A disciple or devotee should never approach a Perfect Master with a mind clouded with doubts and queries of why, when and wherefore. This can be a hindrance to his receptivity of the Master’s grace, which is beyond the probings of the intellect.
So I say with divine authority, approach me with unfailing faith, love and devotion, and with the longing to receive my divine love and grace.
February and March 1954,