Yogi Bhajan Lecture Archive
Lecture by :
Siri Singh Sahib Bhai Sahib Harbhajan Singh Khalsa Yogi Ji
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Lecture on: 07/24/1996
Category: Master's Touch Course
Location: Espanola, NM

Life of a Teacher

Flexibility, Humility & Compassion

We have divided ourselves with many concepts, and each concept has given us a conception. Then our commotions relate to those concepts.
The normal course of our life is very natural—just like the birds and the animals, we are living by impulse. When we are children, we crawl. When we are young, we are very hot and passionate. When we become old, we fall apart. So these are natural processes of life. They have no rational conception. When you are young, you shall grow. As you grow up, you’ll become an adult. As an adult, you become mature. When you are mature, you become old. When you are old, you are dying.
But the problem is that you can’t handle a relationship, because to handle a relationship, you have to invest your spirit, and you don’t have a concept of your spirit. When you do not have a concept of your spirit, then you have a concept of emotions, feelings, commotions, and everything else added to it.
Are you born that way? Is it decreed that you have to suffer? No. If you have your emotions, and you keep your emotions, but if instead of using your emotions, you use your spirit, you shall not suffer.
When you play the game, then the game plays with you. It’s like a shuttle car, going back and forth. It’s a very subtle situation. Ninety-five percent of people just live their lives, for say, eighty years, and do not leave behind any mark—none whatsoever. They just come, they live, and they go. They were born, just a few people knew them, a few people went to their funeral, and they are forgotten. Not only are they forgotten, the majority of people do not know the name of their great-grandfather, forget about anybody else. So some lived well, some didn't live well, some will not live well. Some will try to live well. It’s going on.
Let me tell you something very funny. A person became a doctor. It took him eight years to become a doctor, and then he started his practice. One day he was very frustrated. I said, “What is wrong with you?”
He said, “Oh, I took out a student loan. Now I work day and night, just to pay it back.”
I said, “Why is it so painful for you to pay it back? It is karma. You have the life, you have the prana, you have the spirit, you have the soul. You have to pay it back.”
Everything you get, you have to pay back. Nothing is free. Your body, your wealth, and your environments are already pre-destined. For instance, somebody might start a business with a hundred thousand dollars; he becomes a millionaire—that’s fun. On the other hand, somebody starts with a hundred thousand dollars, and he loses the hundred thousand dollars. There’s nothing. So loss and gain are personal. The starting point is already set just as the longitude and latitude that you were born at are set.
Do you recognize who you are supposed to recognize? No, you don’t. If it fits your emotion, you recognize it. If it doesn’t, you don’t. If it fits your purpose, you recognize it. If it doesn’t, you don’t. The strength of your judgment is the only enemy you have. You don’t look at things in the light of the spirit, the light of the soul, and you do not believe and trust that everything is the light of the soul. Things will fit in when they want to fit in. You are not required to fit them and unfit them and make people believe or force them to consider.
What has happened to you when you sign for a divorce from a girl to whom you are married, and whom you have told for seven years, “I love you, I love you, I love you?” Then what happens? What happened to your statement of love? “No contest, just our chemistry doesn’t meet.” Why? Why do you sometimes have friends, and then you don’t have friends? Because technically speaking you don’t have strength. You don’t have the strength to go through the gallows. And this is the main reason why the most beautiful gift of life, which could just be enjoyed, is wasted.
Once there was a girl who wanted to marry a boy, but everybody told her, “Don’t marry this boy.”
She said, “No, I want to.”
“Okay, get married.” Six years later they were divorcing. The next time she came, she wanted to marry again.
We said, “Well, this time don’t get married fast. Just get engaged and see what happens.” They got engaged for six years.
After six years she said, “I don’t want to be engaged. I want to be dis-engaged.”
I looked at her and said, “Is six years your routine?”
Similarly, there’s a student of mine, who was one of my best students, who left. Every two and a half years, the cycle changes. I was talking to her a week ago. I said, “Hey, this is the second-and-a-half year coming on. What is next?”
She said, “You tell me.”
I said, “You are going to mess up again. Why is this?”
She said, “I don’t care. I always try to mess up my life, or not mess up my life, I don’t care. Worse comes to worse, you are still alive. That’s enough.”
Can you believe this? I said, “What are you talking about?”
She said, “Oh, I know I can do anything I want, and if worse comes to worse, you’ll take care of me.”
I said, “So you have a general permit to mess it up?”
She said, “Yeah. In two and a half years, I’ll do something else.”
You can divide life into two and a half year segments. You have a conception, then an inferiority or a superiority complex comes, because you have conceived that conception.
I know a businessman who is very successful, very calm. But the moment he understands that he has to work in partnership, he leaves. There’s a fear of society. It’s called “social phobia.”
There was a very talented girl. She once got a job offer for a very high position. She said, “No, I want to be a school teacher.” She didn't take the ninety-thousand-dollar-a-year job; instead she reported for the twenty-thousand-dollar-a-year position. “I want to teach school children.” There was a very powerful conception in the authoritative power, in the image of a school teacher. She wanted to teach. She had a conception. And whenever you have a concept, you have a conflict.
These days the trend is a little changed, but a couple of years ago, everybody was a masseuse, everybody was a healer. Once I asked somebody, “Do you know the name of this muscle?”
He said, “What? You mean calf?”
I said, “The calf has so many muscles. Have you ever studied anatomy, and understood what you are talking about?”
There is something you do not understand. Birds live, animals live—the cows, the hogs and horses—and you will live, too. In their world, they act and react. But in your case, you have an applied consciousness. In your case it is your depth and strength. In your case it is your wisdom and intelligence. In your case it is your intuition and your human strength. Therefore you can be very flexible, adjustable. Your position can be understood, and you can stand under, and keep going.
A Teacher has no territory and a healer has nothing of self but prayer. A healer is a living prayer. A human is a living light. And there’s no fight about it.
In life we lose three things: flexibility, humility, and compassion. If you look through history, you will see that in the beginning we were one, then we were in one cave, then a couple of caves made a tribe, and then the tribe made the territory. A certain territory made the state; those states made the country; and certain countries made the world. We have been dividing from the beginning of time until today. We never learned wisdom, intuition, self-respect, self-esteem, compassion, kindness, caring. All we learned is “conquer or be conquered.” Even today we do the same thing. We did not have peace then, nor do we have peace now. Simply our geographical or cultural situations might have changed.
Can you believe that the Jews and Arabs have lived for centuries together, and they can’t live in peace today? Yugoslavia was one country. My God, they have killed each other like you can’t even understand. Now in 1996 they call it ethnic cleansing. In Africa it’s tribal cleansing. At home, it is ego cleansing.
Once a woman came to me, and she was so badly beaten, it was terrible. While counseling the situation I asked her, “What happened the night before that in the morning there was a fight?"
She said, “Oh, we were very happy. We went out for dinner, we came home, and had beautiful, marvelous sex. We slept. We got up in the morning, and we were so happy. Everything was fine.”
I said, “Then what happened?”
She said, “Well, he got ready, and I got ready. We were sitting at the breakfast table. I don’t know what happened, but when he put his spoon in, there was a fly in it."
He took the bowl and let it go at her face, threw the table up, broke the plates. She said, "All I knew, is afterwards, there was nothing but a disaster. And then he stomped out. I noticed that I was bleeding. I went to the mirror, and saw that my whole face was cut.”
Why? Have you tolerance? No. Can you communicate? You can’t. Your common notion is not to live in harmony, peace, and tranquillity. Your common notion is to conquer or be conquered. You have a brutal instinct. Yes, I agree that you are part brute, part human, and part angel. But the angelic part must be more than sixty percent. The human part should be almost thirty percent, and your brute part, as ten percent, must keep you together. It is rational. That’s how your development should be. That's how your seven-year cycle of consciousness, your eleven-year cycle of intelligence, and your eighteen-year cycle of life must proportionately grow. Your life force at eighteen years is one. Then your consciousness must grow in proportion—2.5, or 2.6, 2.7, 2.8, even 3 points—something like that. When you are eighteen, that is one unit. Your intelligence must grow 1.6, 1.9, or two. Then life will be very comfortable, very easy.
Once I was called by a man to go see my Teacher. He said, “Your Teacher wants to see you.”
I said, “Is it urgent, or do I have time?”
He said, “Well, come as you want.”
I said, “Okay.” I went home, I changed my clothes, I dressed up properly, and I went and presented myself.
He looked at me. He said, “It took you a long time.”
I said, “No. I came as fast as I could.”
“Well, you are not dressed up properly.”
I said, “Yes, Sir, I didn’t dress up properly.”
He said, “No, no, no, no, no. Stand up before the mirror. I tell you that this is wrong, that’s wrong, that’s wrong, that’s wrong, that’s wrong. Usually you are the best-dressed man.”
I said, “Oh, what a day it is today!” You know, what can you do? Then I sat down.
He said, “Sit down, I want to tell you something. Never get ready in a hurry. You will never be yourself. If you will be lazy, you are crazy. If you are in a hurry, you won’t be you.”
A month or two passed, and I forgot about the situation. The man came again and announced: “You are wanted again.”
I said, “Again? Do I have time?”
He said, “Perfect, you have time.”
I said, “Okay, don’t worry, baby.” I got so neatly dressed up, you can’t believe it. When I arrived, my teacher was walking outside on the lawn.
He said, “You came?”
I said, “Very well dressed up.”
He looked at me, and he said, “That’s true.” Then he sat down and he said, “Whenever you go to get something, be bountiful, beautiful, and look as good, and as perfect as you can. Simple, gracious, and go with a smile.”
Well, I was fourteen years old.
One day I was working in the fields, and he looked at me. He said, “Let us go.” Now, you know in India, especially when working in the fields, you have on a big underwear, one shirt, and a little turban on your head—that’s it. That's how I looked, turning the earth with a hoe in my hand. He said, “Come along.” So I started with him. You know, he took me through the main streets of the city, bare-footed.
When I came back, I said, “Thank you, can I go?”
He said, “No, no, I want to tell you something. How was your visit to the city today?”
I said, “Truthfully, or do I just have to tell you what you want to hear?”
He said, “No, truthfully.”
I said, “Very embarrassing.”
He said, “Thank you. I wanted you to experience embarrassment, that’s all. Done. We’ll meet again.”
So a Teacher is there to teach a person all the facets and faculties of life, and to conquer the mental state in embarrassment, in confrontation. That’s the job. You have come here to become Teachers to what, read books, and write stories, teach people how to raise their legs and how to raise their head or stand on their heads? Or just to tell them how good and great you are? No. That will never make you a teacher. That will only make you a book machine. When you become a Teacher, then you become a perfect enlightened creature. It’s very easy. You will not be you.
As long as your ego exists, you are not a Teacher. As long as you expect appreciation, you are not a Teacher, you are a beggar. Some are very qualified beggars, some are very rude and crude. I once went to Boulder and there was a Spiritual Teacher there. When the students told me his rules, I had to talk to him. I said, “Hey, what are you doing?”
He said, “I am testing my students.”
I said, “I can understand there is a certain code of conduct. But you are exposing them to the laws of the state. "Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's."1
As a person you have an authority of contract. But as a Teacher you have no authority—moral, personal, or individual. As a teacher you have no authority of contract. You have only one right—to serve, to serve, to serve; to elevate, to elevate, to elevate; exalt, exalt, exalt.
When a teacher and student meet in a good atmosphere, it creates a spark. Have you heard that?
Class: Yes, Sir.
YB: It creates a spark. When you take a hammer and chisel, it creates a spark, too. A good Teacher is bad news. A bad Teacher is good news.
We are actually not teachers here in this country. Here in this country there’s no standard that you are a teacher. There are so many restrictions—workmen’s compensation, insurance for harassment: sensual, sexual, social, personal harassment. The teacher is so heavily insured here. There are hardly any teachers as far as I know in the United States who have not gone through two, three, five, six lawsuits.
The most famous lawsuit I went through is the one we call the “Beet Case.” Somebody sued me after I mentioned in a lecture I gave in Boston that beets are good for you. So she ate beets. Under that influence she had a tubalization done, and eight years later she realized she can’t have a baby. So she sued. The case went forward, discovery started. But one fine day they withdrew the case, just withdrew it. For two and a half years we stood the torture, and after that she just withdrew it.
They asked me, “What to do?”
I said, “Nothing. It comes with the territory.”
Some students you meet are very wise, loving; they serve you. Some like to be with you just to put their hooks somewhere. Some like to come to be insane. This is one of the situations which is very uncommonly insane. You must understand that as a Teacher, you cannot be judged by the present time. History will judge you. A Teacher is not judged by his students, nor by his fellow man, nor by anybody. A Teacher is always judged by history. Are you willing to take the risk that in history you shall be known as a bogus idiot who exploited everybody, that you were worthless?
Class: Yes, Sir.... No, Sir!
YB: My God, what a risk. You didn’t understand what I was saying. (Laughter in the room.) I forgive you for your affirmation. It’s amazing. Don’t fall in love with me, because then I’ll start testing you and you’ll feel miserable. This is the first job of the love of the teacher. When you love a teacher you should become desireless. Not undesirable—desireless.
One day I told somebody, “Become desireless.” She came naked to the university, and I said, “What is wrong with you?”
She said, “I have no desire.”
I said, “No desire to put clothes on?”
“No, I’m natural, organic. You told me today.”
I said, “Holy mother, go put clothes on and come back.”
“If you say so.” So she came back with clothes.
From that day onwards, I reserved my judgment of what to say and what not to say. You know, most of the time in my classes, I would ask Shakti, “What should I say?” I have twenty-seven years of the funniest experiences.
You don’t understand that I am not without pain. I am in humongous pain. It’s not that they can’t become great teachers. It’s not that. They just don’t do it.
Some teachers want to be popular. What is this? A popularity contest? Some people want to be very loving. Have you seen one 3HO teacher (I will not name him), who hugs everybody? Do you know him? One day he met me and I said, “Either stop hugging or leave 3HO, because it is not written in the code of conduct. Hug somebody if somebody hugs you. That I can understand. But what are you doing?”
He said, “I just want to hug everybody.”
I said, “Action has a reaction equal and opposite. First you hug, then you bug. And this game of hugging and bugging,” I said, “It doesn’t work.”
I was a teacher in India, too. If you came improperly to class or you came one minute late, that’s all you needed to raise the Kundalini. The class would sit and watch what that person would go through—you would not believe it. Because without a discipline you can never be a disciple, and without a discipline you cannot be a master, and without a discipline you cannot deliver. And without a discipline you will never know the exalted self. The power to obey is the power to command. Here in the West, to surrender, to be humble, to obey is considered to be a slavery, but actually it is the power of the self. Only a most exalted, most powerful character can surrender. It’s a very different culture, different understanding. When I started writing here, “Humbly Yours,” people objected to it. “Sir, what does that mean, ‘Humbly Yours’?”
I said, “Well, I mean what I say.” Because I’m a vehicle, I’m a channel. I’m not the Absolute.

Let us test out our spirit.
You did well this afternoon. Remember what you did this afternoon? Now you have to do this. Remember? These two fingers have to be open. And you have to do the same thing and hit the seventh rib with full force. Right? Ready? You have done it. Now you must do it, and this time you must experience it, because this is the time to do it. Come on. Ready, set, and go!
(Tape “Gobinday, Mukanday" by Matamandir Singh plays.) Come on now. Remind yourself with every breath that you have to win tonight. Good luck.
Let the breath be the Breath of Fire. Hurry up. Try your best.
Inhale. Stretch your hands up please, and lift up your body to the extent that you stretch your spine. It is one time only. Come on, do it, hard! Lift, tight, tight, tight. Relax.
There cannot be any power which can come to you from outside. There’s a dormant power within you which has to be awakened. You must awaken that power and penetrate all the cycles of transmission of your magnetic field energy, in which you have a psyche, which governs your essence to become a greater exalted person, to face everything with grace. That’s the beauty.
So we are practicing in one way or the other, trying to be nice to ourselves for the first time. At least we have the desire to become Teachers. Whether we will become or not, act as Teachers or not, it’s difficult to say. A Teacher acts in the interest of the higher self of the student. There are three parts of the student—his self, his worldly self, and his higher self. A spiritual Teacher only belongs to the higher self. And when he belongs to the higher self, and the student obeys and reaches his higher self, then the other two lower-grade sides are all taken care of. It is very simple.
You have to elevate to go higher, and then you can’t leak downstairs. Here is shashaaraa (YB puts his hand on top of his head). You have to save yourself from your ears, from your eyes, from your mouth, from your hands, and from your legs, and from the other two areas. You have to have a total control of what comes in and what goes out of you, in the interest of you.
This world is our qualification, standard, examination, a place where we must examine our selves in our own interest. We must learn to love ourselves before we love anybody else. We must honor ourselves before we honor anybody else. We must serve ourselves before we serve anybody else. If we do not know how to do things for ourselves, we shall not be in a position to do things for others. Because when we do things for others, that is for a purpose. And purpose will create prejudice. Instead of having friends, you will have enemies. You will have concepts. You have a concept of what is right and what is wrong. You are born and trained and you die in judgment. Things come to you, you feel very honored. Things are taken away from you, you feel very insulted.

Ayk bhee na deh, das bhee hir leh
Ta-o mooraa kaho kahaa karay-eh
Jis thakur sio naahee chaaraa
Taakao keejai sad namaskaaraa
-Guru Arjan, Siri Guru Granth Sahib, page 268
If God has given you one and takes away ten, what can you do, fool?
You cannot fight with the Master; it is better to bow and accept Him.

If He doesn’t give you one and takes away the ten you have, then fool, what can you do? Why fight with that Lord with whom you have no reason to fight? Why not just bow and get the blessings?
I’m not telling you that you should study it, but there is a scripture called Asa di Var. It is written in Gurmukhi, and it is translated into English. If you somehow get a chance to read it and understand it, there’s not one wisdom in the world you will not be the master of. You don’t have to go to a library and search everything out. It tells you exactly what it is, and why it is. And it tells you if you cross it, then that is. Pretty good. It tells you about God, soul, and man. It tells you about the Word, the words, and the wonder, the Infinite, the finite. It’s a very defined thing. When I was studying I asked one question: “Why do Sikhs sing this every morning? I mean, there should be some reason.” Then I studied the words. I discovered that it was a combination of sayings of several of the Gurus put together. There are some shabads, and some slokas, and there are some paurees, like steps. In the end, I said, “My God, it’s the science of human behavior in every aspect of life.”
I was not a Sikh to begin with. I became a Sikh. I was born in a Sikh family, that’s true. But I am a scientist. I do not believe that the God which cannot be explained, needs to be worshipped. I also don’t believe that if you do not know who made you, you will make it in this world. I also believe there is a hub, there’s a rim, and there are spokes. Every word spoken is like a spoke. It supports you and stops you. I believe every statement of yours affects forever. I also believe that everything which God has done is so open, that every human has to be absolutely open.
So you don't have to follow my religious beliefs. They are very simple, but they will look very weird to you. I don’t believe anything is complicated. I think when we hide and seek, and we want to hunt and harm, then we create complicated things. I don’t believe anybody loves anybody. I think we use this word to blind another person. Or sometimes we blind ourselves. I believe you cannot love anybody—it happens.
It’s very funny. Over the last twenty-five years when I say to somebody, “I love you,” I mean it. And when they say they love me, they don’t understand what it means to love me. Love me or what? How can you love me? Neither can you see me nor can you hear me, nor can you speak my language, nor understand my strength. Neither do you know my altitude, my longitude and latitude, nor my width. What do you know of me? Am I a statue? There are so many statues at the ranch. Love them. I love them, too. That’s why they are there.
Love is something which is a power that makes you know the Unknown. And if you do not know the Unknown of a person, what is this love? Which part do you love? Do you love my nose and my ears? Do you love my fingers? What do you love? What is this love, love, love, love, you talk about? What is it? What is it when you call someone beautiful? You are the ugliest creature on the Earth. Ask the animals. Ask the dog. The moment the dog sees you, he hates you. “What is this two-legged person? I’m at least balanced on four legs.”
When an animal gets really injured and in trouble, it is put to sleep. But when you are injured and you are in trouble, there's no law to put you to sleep. The law is you must suffer to the end. You have absolutely no rights.
It’s the funniest thing. You can teach a parrot to fire a cannon. You can teach a cat, which cannot be taught. You teach a dog everything. I know one dog who skates. They put him in skating boots and the guy is just having a fun. But you cannot teach your mind, which is your first servant. You cannot potty-train your mind, and you throw slander and garbage everywhere. You’re the ugliest born mammal on the Earth. The ugliest. There’s nothing uglier beyond you, because you have never potty-trained your mind and it shh, shh, shh, shh... everywhere. It’s funny. Have you noticed sometimes you say things which are so ugly. What for? I have heard it. You carry the bacteria of the ugliness from person to person. You gossip, you slander, you do all that kind of stuff. Because you have never potty-trained your mind. You have no power against this thing of yours called “mind.”
We’ll talk tomorrow. Will that be all right?
Class: Yes, Sir.
YB: We’ll explore the mind and its perception, its conception, its projections in progressiveness in the sense of how the mind works.
I’ll come tomorrow sometime, whenever I will feel like it. I think we finished the business today. All the meetings have been done, orders have been passed. I work also, you know? I’m not that free. I have fourteen corporations. I have to work. I’m a pretty good slave.
Yesterday I came here and I looked so good and nice to you. You should have seen me just before coming, in the guest house yelling and screaming. The neighbors came out to see what happened. One young boy said, “Your blood pressure must be very high.”
I said, “No, I was calm. I was a very good actor." I scared everybody to death.
The idea is to project the mental force into the faculty of, in the facility, where another person can understand quickly and things get done. What frequency you use, and what caliber and gauge you use, that is your ability. You never talk like that. You don’t speak like that. You don’t know anything. So we’ll talk tomorrow, we’ll start the subject. We’ll be here at sometime in the forenoon. Good night.


YB Teachings, LLC 2000
Above Article Copyright Yogi Bhajan 2002. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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