*The Christian and Buddhist monks and the Buddhist nuns have the head shaved and the Christian nuns have the hair hidden.
Hidden, hidden, okay. Cut their hair short, too, or they hide it.
*Yes, they hide it. Yes. So I...
You want to know why？
It's a tradition. All right？In India, when you want to renounce the world - even just one day or two days, that's allowed - and then just to symbolize your renunciation, the teacher, or the one who is responsible for that ceremony, will shave your hair. But afterwards, you grow it back again, or even after you became a monk permanently, you still can continue to grow your hair after just that one time shave.
But some monks never shave their hair; they don't care. Indian monks truly understand more. They don't care if your hair's long or your hair's short. They know the spirit of monkhood, okay？Maybe that's why the Christians do not have to shave the head. Why should you？Christians follow Jesus. You see？Christians and Jesus have long hair, you see？
That's why they keep it that way. And the Buddha has no hair. No, he shaved the head, you see？- and all his monks shaved their heads. So they follow Buddhism in that period of time when people shaved their head to symbolize renunciation, so they just follow the teacher; but it's just a tradition, okay？Sometimes people do not understand the deep, the true tradition, so they force people to shave the hair all the time.
Or sometimes people shave it and feel cool, so they shave it all the time. Actually in India, one time only, to symbolize renunciation, and you can do it as often as you want. Every time you want to renounce the world for a few days or a few weeks, or a few months or a few years, whatever. It's not compulsory that you have to follow the monkhood the whole of your life - never！
And it's not compulsory that you have to leave your hair shaved the whole of your life - never！You can do it if you want; but in India, things are very flexible, open-minded, and broad -everybody's happy. Most of the monks are happy. They don't bother about hair. Some monks, they leave their hair so long that when they walk, it trails around them, you know, behind them like a train.
And they put, sometimes, cow's waste to mud their hair together so the flies, the fleas don't breed in their hair, and they never wash their hair, and that's their kind of renunciation; and some of the Sikhs, the renunciates before, they have to leave their hair long, even the men, and have a bunch on top of their hair. That's their renunciation - and the Sikhs have to grow a beard as well.
Not women, okay？Don't worry. Growing beards, that's their renunciation, for example. It's just to symbolize their school of thought, and people look at them and know, 『This one belongs to Buddhism.』It was the idea in the old time, but when the Buddha has died already, you have to find another school, the living school, of Buddhism to study. Whether you want to shave your hair or not makes no difference, as you already know. It's proven to you after initiation.
You're from France？
England！(Yes.) Last time I saw you in France - same beard, same hair, same mustache. Okay, go on.
*I don't know if this is the appropriate place to ask this question. (Why not？) I heard the story of one disciple of Buddha who came before. He had a chance to ask his Master to stay in the world forever, (Yes.) but he missed the opportunity…
Ananda and Shakyamuni Buddha.
*Yes. I was wondering why I have this thought. So I am thinking...
I could explain to you why it didn't happen. Is that what you want to know, right？Okay. I'll explain to you, okay？(Okay.) That is a work of God, too, even though it is hindered by maya, but it's supposed to be like that. Can you imagine？If the Buddha stayed here forever, then you would not practice. You take everything for granted as long as it is everlasting, easy approach, you know？
Easy get, easy forget. So the Buddha has to go. He has to die, one day or another, one way or another. That is very good for mankind. Don't do the opposite. The Buddha will come in another form, and whoever is very longing for the inner Truth will find that Buddha at that time, okay？Don't worry about mankind: they go on forever.
They will be there when the next Master comes. And, the reason why Ananda, the disciple that was the closest to the Buddha did not hear the question of the Buddha and therefore did not invite him… After the third time the Buddha asked, 『You want…？』He hinted. He said, 『Well, the Buddha can stay in the world forever. You know that？』
But Ananda did not request, and after the third time, he [the Buddha] could not ask anymore. After the third time, if the Buddha requested you something and you did not reply, or you did not comply, then the Buddha cannot ask further - not allowed to ask you any further, not allowed to persuade you to do any further. So everything within the three-times limit.
So, Ananda was the closest disciple of the Buddha, but he was the last one to become enlightened. Why？Just like a marriage. You take your partner for granted. When you see them every day, you don't see the greatness in them. Even though he might be the president of United States or the biggest scientist of the world, you still think of them just as a mere father, mother, husband, wife, girlfriend, boyfriend, whatever.
Same with Ananda; because he was so close to the Buddha, he did not see, he did not pay attention to what the Buddha said. Sometimes he was not attentive. So the great moment came
when the Buddha hinted that he could stay in the world forever, Ananda missed it, and that opportunity never came back again.
So, the Buddha had to go. But that's good. Don't blame Ananda, and don't feel sorry for the Buddha. That's good for the Buddha. First, he didn't suffer long. It's good for mankind, because mankind will have longing. They also know that the Buddha comes and the Buddha has to go one day or another. They have to search, they have to treasure the presence of the Buddha when the Buddha is still alive.
So that's very good for mankind. Don't blame the maya, either. Don't ask any Master to stay too long. It's not necessary, all right？(Thank you.) You are welcome. Master is inside you. If a Master goes, another one will come always. Okay？Don't worry. The world is never without a Master. At least one or two sometimes. Not too many.
* Yes. I don't know if it might be exactly the words, but in the small book of aphorisms coming from Master it's written somewhere that sometimes maya could be also Buddha. Does it mean also that if not a Buddha, will be a Buddha？I don't understand this sentence very well.
*I have some meaning, but I am not sure.
Okay. Tell your meaning. Tell your understanding first.
*My understanding is that even the devil could also become one day good and become also Buddha, because everybody could become a Buddha, even the bad ones, and that's the reason why Buddha is Buddha. But I don't know if it is the meaning exactly.
Well, it's correct in a part of it, in a sense, but the meaning is like this: the maya is also the Buddha. It's like this, because originally everything came from one place -the nothingness, the beginning of all things. So where can the maya have come from if not coming from Godhood, coming from Buddhahood or from the Kingdom of God, okay？
In the beginning, we all were Masters, or part of the Master plan, part of the whole of the creation, like a piece of the whole apple pie, all right？But then each of us carries something individually, different. Like, okay, this one has tomato on it, the next one has mushroom, and the next piece of pizza, that has some olive on it. That's it, okay？And some part is smaller, some part is bigger. Smaller for children to eat, bigger for adults to eat, for example like that.
So, in the beginning, we were all Masters anyhow, or at least we were part of the Masterhood, but then if we want to have fun in the world, then we have to divide ourselves. Each one takes up a different role. So one takes up a role as a Buddha, the other one takes up a role as the opposite of the Buddha.
Just like in a theater play: in the beginning, all the actors, actresses, belong to the same company, but the one who is cut out to be the main actress, she must be so and so beautiful and have so and so figure; and the other one is designed to be a maid and she has to wear such and such dress and behave such and such way and have such and such kind of proportion, the body, things like that.
So we are all the same, but when we descend into a lower level of existence such as this world, then we have to relinquish our right as a Master in order to play another role. So if you play that role too long, it could be possible that you forget everything that you have done in Heaven, or forget what you are, your greatness. That's why I tell you the Master is within you.
Now, if you want to reclaim your Masterhood again, then begin, search inside. For so long you've searched outside in order to fulfill your role, your purpose, whatever, and you forget, okay？So now is the time to look back inside for your own greatness. So maya is actually playing the role of maya for the purpose of balancing the creation, for the purpose of making it `spicy.' If there is no opposite, how would you recognize the other part？
If you have never ever seen a woman in your life, you would not recognize yourself as a man. Therefore, there must be a maya, there must be a Buddha, things like that. That's why all the Masters tell you that you are equal, you are all children of God, or you are all the Buddha, you have all Buddha Nature inside - and that's the only truth there is. Okay？
But that doesn't mean that when you look at somebody doing evil things and you say, 『That is good.』No！Evil is evil, good is good - because for that purpose, they are evil or they are good, and God makes them like that so we know good. If there's no evil, we don't recognize good. Just like when there is no sorrow, we don't know what happiness really means.
So there must be the opposite, what we call 『yin and yang,』so that we can recognize ourselves. Okay？Each one helps the others to recognize their greatness. So no problem about that. You got it？
Not exactly？ Well, you are the professor. You are so used to complicated explanation and books, so it's difficult for me. Maya is the Buddha, because there is no maya in the beginning. There is only Buddha who masks as the maya in order to play the bad guy, because without trial, without a bad guy, how can you prove you are good？
How can you realize you are good？All the heroes are born from situations; all the medicine and all that genius that came from sickness. If there is no sickness, there's no great doctor, no great medicine, no great discovery. If there's no need for light and industry, then we'd have no discovery of electricity. There is just a purpose of badness in order so that everyone can recognize what goodness is and keep on to it.
But the bad one has done that, has masked himself as a bad one for that purpose so that you be great, so that you know, 『This is bad. I should not do this. I have to keep on with the good one.』Because you compare, you say, 『This is really bad. This is good.』Because if you don't have a bad one to compare, you don't know. You lose your direction and the purpose, so there must be a maya; but they are the Buddhas who mask behind the maya. Got it or not？(Yes.) Oh, good！Bless you. Bless you.
It is abstract and very difficult to understand, that I know, but I am very proud of you that as a professor of your age, and the great university in Belgium, and you have practiced humility enough to ask me this question and to even admit it when you did not understand. I really appreciate that, okay？
*Thank you, Master, for sharing time with us. I've been practicing just Convenient Method several months. I have not been initiated.
* If I see any Light or Sound…
If you see any Light or hear any Sound, right？
*Yes. How can I recognize or judge whether it is true or false？
Okay, when you close your eyes, and you close with a band, like eyesight blinder, it's all dark, right？It's all dark at that time then. When you go to the airplane, they have them, very light - not that you band yourself with a bandage - and then you close it, it's all dark, and suddenly the light flashes. Or there is a point of light moving, and you concentrate on that. Then at least, then you know.
*How about Sounds then？
Sound, you don't have it yet, honey. You are not into the Sound yet. The Sound comes later with the initiation.
*So it has to be the Light first？
Because you are just a beginner, so you have not committed yourself by your vegetarian diet or by your own decision, therefore, we just give you a taste, okay？
*Can I have some questions？
Sure, sure. Please.
*Does our attitude towards death always have to be serious？
What kind of attitude we should have towards death？
*Does it have to be serious, or can you laugh about it？
Well, it depends on how you want to go. You can go laughing...
*But no, it is a question for any death. For doctors, for each kind of situation, for all death, for everything.
I know what you mean, like, you mean the doctors when they see death every day, right？How should they feel, right？
*Not only doctors, all death as well. Should we be this serious about this or not？
*Why is our attitude serious towards death？
Not everybody is. I am not.
* What will be important for myself, if not…
Important for you？Life, not death. Live while you are alive, and the death, when it comes, you can't do anything about it, whether you are serious or not serious - no use. Enjoy your life, while it lasts. That's what I can tell you. There's no death actually, just the change of the body. For as long as you don't come back to this physical body, you feel great: you're in Heaven, you are in the freedom, you're in bliss - you never lack anything at all.
Instead of, like, living in this world in this physical body, you have to clothe it, feed it, take care of it, and give it medicine, vaccinate it, make it up, and make it 『down,』everything, and still, it's not so good. But in the body, after death it's very light, very shining, very léger (light).
You can go anywhere you like in an instant and without… - yes！like that！- without needing a helicopter or booking a train ticket and all that, go through customs and searching all over.
*Okay. That means we should laugh about it.
Ha ha. Yes. But I am afraid at that time you have no more muscles to laugh. Everybody dies almost the same - very tight-lipped - but you can arrange your smile beforehand. Like, you say to the cremator, 『Please stick two toothpicks at both corners of my mouth for me.』They can do everything nowadays, the make-up artists for the death. Don't they？Can't they？Yes. Just pay a little extra money for the two toothpicks.
*It's the first time that I am here.
Me too. I've never been here before.
*I'd like to ask you about an experience I had a couple of years ago. Actually, I went through a very difficult time of my life and I came out of this time, and after a couple of months I talked to my cousin about it - and she was very much into meditation at that time as well - and she gave me a massage and then she said she's going to give me some energy with her hands on my head.
And when she was in front of my forehead, I kind of switched off and saw myself sitting on a train, like going inside of a mountain and going down in circles, and it was getting faster and faster, and faster. I felt I went through the whole time of my life again, the bad time. (The bad time？)
No, I went through a big crisis. (Only the bad time？)
When she moved in front of you, you re-experienced all the pain？(Yes, kind of.) This is a kind of hypnotism. (Yes.) People use that in therapy.
*All right. It went on. So I woke up that way and I just wanted to get out of this feeling, (That's good.) and my cousin said, like, 『Sit down and pray for this white light,』and I really had this very strong feeling here in front of me and I had this purple opal ring, and this white light came and it was just like... basically it was a feeling of 『everything exists at the same time,』like good and bad.
So you want to go back to that kind of painful past experience again？(No.) That's what you call experience？
*No. I just... The good experience I think about is this white light actually.
The white light will come when you let go of the past black light, okay？Let go of the attachment for the past experience, and let go of the expectation. For when you expect, your mind's occupied with thinking like, 『okay, I want to have that again』-keeps thinking and arguing
and intellectualizing all the time and you can't concentrate.
In our meditation, you should just relax and wait. The Light is there all the time anyhow. Just make sure you are awake when it comes, that's all. The white Light is the third level anyhow - it's not a big deal - but you had reached the third level at that time; you came back down again.
*People tend to travel in their sleeping time and find that they return very, very fast, causing them concern, which perhaps stops other people from repeating the experiences as well. Can you perhaps elaborate on this for us？
Why do you fear about that？
*No, it's the coming back. Sometimes you come down too fast, you are falling too fast.
You're still here.
*Yes. (So？) So, there's no problem there？
I don't see any. Do you？
You are welcome. Everyone, individually, must experience different kinds of heavenly encounter and take what yours is. Be brave: you're going into the unknown, you are going into the beyond. You go beyond this world, beyond the touch and seeing and smell and that kind of world. So be prepared. Go faster if you can. No problem. You all worry about everything that's really non-existent. Don't worry about the body. Even if the body has to go, let it be.
*Dear Master, when I'm in meditation, I got a lot of power in my body. I feel... sometimes I don't know what should I do？I feel like running, running.
Yes, so powerful. You feel energized, right？
*I feel so strong, healthy.
I know. I know.
*My question is: While reading Master's book, I feel your book is like a history book - some very, very old history person writing the book - so knowledgeable and with wisdom, and logical. So when I saw you today, you look like a young girl, (Thank you.) so lovely. I feel I want to kiss you, like that.
*Just feel passion; you are so lovely.
*Everybody respects you. I think it's the same as my feeling probably for everybody in here. So, do you have passion？If people love you, what should you do？You are pretty, you are young, you are a Master, you are famous in the world.
*If people like... For example, people love you, have you got passion ？You don't... I don't know how I can explain, because you are a human being, too, and human beings…
Yes. Do I have passion？(Yes.) Yes, I do. (Thank you.)
You are welcome. Talk so long and just ask that question？
You think I am wood or made of concrete or what？I told you, I get all the things that you get. I did not lose anything, I just gained more wisdom.
*Do you feel all the pressure？(Yes, I do.) Because millions of people love you...(Yes, I do.)
When I read your magazine, you said everybody....
I understand now. Understand. You mean you expect that I am very old, all wrinkled - I do have some, but not that much yet - and a beard and all that？I am getting old also, you know？Just that my face probably doesn't look that old sometimes.
*You are so lovely. You're a professional artist, so lovely. That's why I find that all the… why people love you. You have a lot of color on your...
No, it depends on what kind. Yes, yes. I understand, I tell you straight. If the love is kind of general love and respect, with no condition imposed, no expectation on me, then it's very, very beautiful, it's very harmonious and very blissful for me. It's a blessing - but if there is a kind of selfish love imposed upon me, then I feel pressure, very much.
*Everyone loves you, wants to see you or wants to be around you, listen to you, so you have no time for yourself. Do you？
I sneak out for TV and movie sometimes.
*That's why we worry about you, a lot, a lot. (Don't worry.)
Thank you so much. Don't worry. I'm supposed to bring you happiness, not worry, okay？I can take care of myself. I am strong. I am down sometimes, but that's just the way of life. You can't just have `always up.' It's okay. When I am in pain I scream, and when I am happy, I laugh - just take it as it comes. No problem. God will never let me be out of breath for too long. Hes will give me an oxygen mask. When I nearly die, Hes says, 『Okay, here. Get it. Five minutes.』
*So, I feel Master's like an angel.
Angel？Angel-like Master. I feel that. I am both. Actually, when we practice we become younger, energetic and uplifted. When people are uplifted and positive, they look younger, more lovely; everybody likes an uplifted person. Nobody likes a miserable and uptight personality, that's all, okay？
And most of the time, when I am with you I am very happy because I am honored by doing the job that's assigned to me, and when I see your lovely face, your loving glance, and your satisfied smile of seeing me, then I cannot be miserable, I cannot think of any sadness anymore. So, most of the time when you see me talking to you, you always see me very happy and smiling, and that makes me look younger and more lovely, like every of you. All right？Just natural. Thank you for the compliment anyhow.