To Become a Medium

Swami Satyananda Saraswati

If there is an electrical junction in your room, you take a nylon rope and connect it with the positive and the negative. Connect it to your room and attach a bulb to that. Switch it on and do you know what will happen? Nothing. So you go to an electrician and tell him, "The electricity is not flowing, there is something wrong with the junction; there is something wrong with the meter; there is something wrong with the transformer, because I have connected the lines all right."

So the electrician comes and he says, "Where is the connection? This is not correct. This nylon is a non-conductor of electricity. Put a copper wire." So you purchase a copper wire, connect the positive and negative to the main switch, switch it on and there is the light. Well, that is how it should happen between guru and disciple.

Laying down the arms

There must be some form of conduction between the two. If the disciple is resisting, if he is full of doubts and apprehension, and afraid of his guru, he is a non-conductor. There is no use saying, "My guru is not working through me." Between two individuals there is a cord. In ordinary life it is an emotional cord. The same emotion can be sublimated and then it becomes faith and devotion. This devotion is an invisible link between guru and disciple.

It is true that the guru has to be the powerhouse, but the disciple has to be a good conductor. In order to be a good conductor, a disciple has to lay down his arms of resistance. He has to make himself empty, for only then can the music flow. That is how a disciple is also made. The art is emptying oneself. I do not mean that a disciple has to become like an idiot. A disciple keeps his own mind, his own personality and his own ego and individuality. However, as far as he and the guru are concerned, when he is empty and receptive, then only can the disciple act as a channel for guru's power.

Constant awareness

The word for disciple is shishya; this means he is a medium. In order to be a perfect channel for the guru's transmission, in addition to meditation, one has to become one with him on the spiritual plane. It is difficult to explain how to become one on the spiritual plane. One has to understand. How does a mother feel oneness with her child? How does a friend feel closeness with a friend? It is in the realm of awareness.

The realm of awareness has to be permeated. All the time the mother is aware of her son. The awareness of her son is totally in her mind. If someone has lost his dearest friend, what is the state of his awareness? That is called total awareness. He is always on your mind. The awareness is constant. You eat and sleep, you talk and walk, but the awareness is constant. Constant and consistent awareness is important between guru and disciple.

This can only happen if there is devotion. If there is no devotion, there cannot be constant and consistent awareness. It has to be like a greedy man who always thinks about money, or of a passionate man who always thinks about a woman. In the same way, the awareness of the guru has to be constant.

Towards the light

Therefore, the main quality is devotion. You are not attached to his body, his knowledge, position or his worldly qualities. Still you are attached to him. You do not know what it is; if you analyse devotion, it is like this. I am attached to an object and I have passion for it. I can explain it, but in the case of guru, you do not know why you are aware of him.

You are not attached to his body, his money, his wisdom, but still you are aware of him. This is one explanation of devotion.

When devotion comes within the range of the mind, it consumes all forms of thinking. For the moment, there are no distractions, the disciple forgets himself, and at that time he can see the light. He can see that there is no darkness. The experience is a kind of bliss within. The disciple, therefore, should first of all develop devotion.

—2 September 1980, Chamarande, France