Theo. – What did you learn with your meditation teacher when he allowed you to become a trainer?

The Elder – The main thing I learnt was that I should always keep in my mind and in my heart what is the Goal of human life for the aspirant sitting opposite me.

Theo immediately grasped the message and felt the prayer voicing in his heart. He apprehended the condition required for guiding a meditator and he fully enjoyed it.

A few minutes later, he further reflected on it and said:
– When I started meditating, you taught me that heart-to-heart communication that further developed into a soul-to-soul communication. At the beginning, I thought it was about an individual soul to another individual soul (jivatman), then you introduced the idea of the inner master, atman (the immortal soul). Later, when we approached the three levels of liberation, I still better understood it. Finally, if my understanding of the process is right, I think that you just focus your mind on the Centre, on the Divine within the meditator, do you?

The Elder – Actually, the divine within me is what starts communicating with the divine within the aspirant’s heart and that link is maintained constantly.

Theo. – Don’t you ever feel that it can also be interrupted or cut off?

The Elder – Then you can reconnect by making a sankalpa (a subtle suggestion).

Theo. – It sounds so simple…

The Elder – You must be careful though. You can do it only if you are yourself deeply rooted in your centre and in union with the Divine. It is only when you are in such a condition that you can solicit the Divine, the Ultimate Goal within the aspirant’s heart.

Theo. – Does it happen automatically?

The Elder – In fact, the beginning of the meditation and the resulting connection are merely a reminder of the connection established when a beginner is being initiated during the three introductory meditations offered to him or her. I will never start working on it so long as that connection has not been established.

Theo. – Why not?

The Elder (jokingly):
– Because I am lazy and I’d rather have the divine in its entirety in order to do the work.

Theo. – Then the inner master takes control, doesn’t he?

As usual, the Elder did not answer directly. He went back to his Centre and was deeply absorbed.

Theo understood and felt within him that the experience of the Divine cannot be explained…  it must be lived at first!

That instant connection reminded him of another one:
– It is like the Sahaj Marg inner prayer we say before meditating: it connects us to the Centre via our inner master.

The Elder – Transmission is the divine breath (prana), the Word that comes directly from God. It is like a carrying beam that will help us to reach Him. It creates a direct way (yatra) to God, to the Centre within our selves.

Theo. – As far as I can understand it, the quality of the work depends on our ability to withdraw before the Divine.

The Elder – It also depends on the interest, on the attention you’ll pay to the aspirant.

Theo. – A strange thought occurred to me: when you look at the divine within the meditator, the divine is then connected to the Divine. But can we call that a work?

The Elder – We may. It is a non-action, the ‘non-doing’ evoked by Babuji, and mentioned as ‘akarma’ in the Bhagavad Gita.

Theo. – Yeah! I can remember the formula you gave us:
Karma + vikarma = akarma.

The Elder – Exactly:
– Here, the action, karma, is the practice of meditation.
– Vikarma is the inner intention.
Akarma is the ‘non-action’ or the resulting actionless action.

Theo. – The inner action Daaji has called Love.

The Elder – Which is also a sankalpa (suggestion). The fact of associating karma and vikarma produces a non-action, akarma, which is unlimited. It is purely divine. Then the work done on the             aspirant or on the disciple is unlimited, it is infinite.

Theo. – And it generates that infinite energy called ‘pranahuti’. It is a masterwork indeed!

The Elder – That is why, in Sahaj Marg, the Master’s heart is what absorbs the pranahuti to transmit it to the trainer and to the meditator.

Theo. – The Master’s heart is purely divine…

The Elder – And that is the reason why we say that ‘the Master in the trainer’ is the one who has to do the spiritual work. It is only at such a level that the work can be excellent.

Theo. – I think I can better understand now the concept of a non-action action (akarma). To make it short, the trainer must do it, otherwise nothing will ever happen.

The Elder – No action, indeed, means laziness; it is ‘tasmasic’, and the Bhagavad Gita reminds us that ‘action is better than inaction’. What matters is that you should make a clear distinction between inaction and a non-action action, as you say. Inversely, there are also some ‘rajasic’ trainers too: they are very active and do it all by themselves. They want immediate results. So, they scrupulously apply the raja-yoga techniques our Masters have taught us.

Theo. – And what sort of results do they get?

The Elder – Partial ones. That will all depend on the spiritual level of such trainers, as they will tend to give what they have and start from what they are.

Theo. – Some trainers of that sort gave me satsanghs and I can say that it works very well.

The Elder – If in a group just a few meditators solicit the Master in the trainer, that is enough for the Master to manifest Himself.

Theo. – Do you mean that the force, the intensity of the trainer’s aspiration depends upon the seated meditators facing him?  Who is helping then?

The Elder (smiling):
– I can remember the times when, in Manapakkam, our Master Chariji, who had just completed a trainer’s preparation, would send the poor beginner to conduct meditation for three or four thousand meditators without giving him or her any practical indication.

Theo. – So, what would happen then?

The Elder – It certainly was the experience that would mark their lives. They could do nothing but let the Inner Master conduct the meditation: after the normal moment of panic, the trainer would then learn what withdrawing to let the Master do the spiritual work did really mean.

Theo. – And what would happen to them afterwards?

The Elder – Just like you, they’d receive the theoretical and the technical training required and apply it meticulously, but they will probably remain nostalgic about that state of ignorance that had led them to surrender to the Master with all the fantastic and divine effects it had entailed.

Theo. – Is there any possibility for them to recover that condition?

The Elder –They learn by experience, just as you are doing. The Inner Master will guide and teach you.

Theo. – Why is vikarma, the inner intention, so important then?

The Elder – Because it concerns the purpose of the work, the Ultimate Goal, which awaits the brother or the sister sitting opposite us with their eyes closed. There are moments when the trainer can let himself/herself be carried away by the transmission and slip into a deep meditation (samadhi). That would be an action (karma) without intention (vikarma).

Theo. – Then the meditators would not receive anything, would they?

The Elder – When the meditator is in Samadhi, the Master can directly perceive the aspirant’s call and answer it without going through the trainer.

Theo. – It sounds fantastic!

The Elder – It does and it does not, because then the required regenerative cleaning work won’t have been made. And for that work to be efficient, the trainer should apply his/her will.

Theo. – It is like the daily cleaning we must do at the end of the day. Sometimes I just slip into a deep meditation and forget about cleaning.

The Elder – The transmission (pranahuti) must be received in a purified heart by our purified chakras. Otherwise, you know the consequences.

Theo. – I do. I know that the transmission may strengthen our tendencies, because it is neutral…

The Elder – Everything is in its place and has its raison d’être.

Theo. – It is like learning how to play a music instrument: first, you practice scales, again and again, until the day when your teacher allows you to play freely…

The Elder – … until you can master it completely and you are able to be infinitely creative.

To be continued…

Theophile the Elder
An excerpt from Dialogues with Theophile the Elder
Theophile the Younger’s initiation