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Teacher and Disciple on the Inner Path

Excerpt from an interview with OM C. Parkin

Isn't it amazing that since the Enlightenment, adults in Western culture have been content in their spiritual development with training their minds and accumulating useful knowledge? What value has the maturation into an undoubtedly not exhausted higher human potential, the inner, the spiritual development?

When human beings take responsibility for themselves, step out of a childish-pubescent mindset often extended to decades of life, thus becoming adults, they actually awaken quite naturally to be disciples interested in the deepest depths / the highest heights of themselves, in the immeasurable beyond transcending their limited horizon, their limited self-created world view. Just as naturally, they will seek a spiritual guide on the inner path to the Self, a spiritual master. Spiritual masters and human beings awakened to be disciples attract each other, and they are united by the only pure and everlasting love, the love of Truth.

Below, in interview form, spiritual master OM C. Parkin provides insights into the nature of true discipleship, with hints on development paths and pitfalls.

May I use a quote from OM? "In reality, the student-teacher relationship is a love relationship. And this love carries the student through the confusions and is constantly nourished by the teacher. " To me this is a very important statement and I would like to ask you to elaborate or explain it a little more.

It is true that it is a love relationship. At the same time, it is true that this love relationship does not necessarily correspond to the disciple's idea of love, because a true love relationship serves to destroy and not maintain ideas of love. This love relationship is a relationship in which the student begins to gain confidence in his own heart, to listen to his heart, to let his heart speak, so that his whole organism naturally resonates with the organism and teaching of the teacher. Even a child has access, albeit limited, to love. A child can also love, can love the parents. An adolescent can love the parents. An adult can love.  A spiritual human being can love.

Love runs as a possibility through all stages of development, through all stages of discipleship, beginning with the early ones, the simplest, where there is a great deal of inner limitation through ignorance and through inner divisions where forces of the subconscious prevail. However, if students understand that love is what they can hold on to from the first moment to the last, love can also accompany them through all the limitations, through all the attacks of the mind’s shadow forces, like a red life thread by which they can orient themselves, along which they can shimmy. And when this thread breaks, because the student has forgotten the essentiality of this inner silken thread and the necessity of moving along it, other forces take over in the student's consciousness, counter-forces that work out of the shadow, and then the well-known phenomena of turning away occur. For in fact, as long as you stay with and move along this thread, there is no impulse of inner turning away. We must not understand this morally, as if there were a prohibition of turning away, but there is simply no impulse. For just as children do not turn away from their parents, whom they love, students do not turn away from a realized teacher, whom they love. That this love, which is always subject to mental limitations, also has to pass tests, has to overcome limits, is true, but it does not mean that the love is destroyed by this. The red thread of this love relationship always remains, is in fact available to the students at any time, provided they understand how to move along this thread. Thus, this invisible thread leads inward, for a fully realized teacher is not another person with whom one can maintain an external love relationship but is the SELF.

Could we say that the student-teacher relationship evolves from a dependent relationship into the relationship of two free people serving the same?

After all, the adult human being is the fruit of the first phase of the inner path, and the adult human being is the threshold of conscious discipleship. If there is such a thing as complete inner freedom, it is available exclusively to the adult human being who has left behind and integrated the developmental stages of the child, the adolescent. This adult human being who accepts conscious discipleship has already gained a relative inner freedom that is beyond dependence or independence, for these are concepts that have no place at all in the student-teacher relationship.

And this relatively free eye then looks into the absolute freedom which corresponds to its own longing and also to the reality in which the looking person really lives, which only has not yet been fully recognized.

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