F o r e w o r d

 

Sant Kirpal Singh Ji (1894-1974) was the towering spiritual figure of his time: a giant of Biblical proportions, whose remembrance lives on forever in the hearts of those who knew him. A seeker after Truth from the beginning, he met his Master, Baba Sawan Singh Ji of Beas (1858-1948), in 1924, after seeing him within for seven years. After a discipleship that was remarkable both for his closeness to his Master and for the degree to which he was able to become a living example of his Master's teaching *, he was entrusted with the Guruship when his Master left the body in 1948.

He established his headquarters ("Sawan Ashram," named after his Master) just outside of Delhi and gave solace and spiritual healing to the thousands of suffering refugees pouring into Delhi from the first India-Pakistan War. His reputation as an absolutely authentic spiritual Master grew and grew, and he expanded his mission constantly, making three World Tours (1955, 1963-64, and 1972), becoming President of the World Fellowship of Religions in 1957, establishing the Manav Kendra (Human Center) in Dehra Dun in 1970, and presiding over the World Conference on Unity of Man in 1974 -- of which were variations on the theme of effecting the spiritual revolution, as he explained later.

But as this book makes clear, Master Kirpal Singh's main work was always and ever the bringing about of that revolution through the connecting of the individual seeker with the manifestations of God within his or her own Self, and the taking of that seeker from plane to plane until he or she reached his or her place of origin at the heart of the Universe. This is the eternal work of the Masters in all religious traditions, and it was the pre-eminent work of Kirpal. And when he left this physical plane, he entrusted that work to his gurumukh spiritual son and successor, Ajaib Singh of Rajasthan (1926-1997), who continues to ease the pain of the suffering ones and show them the reality of their being to this day, even though he has, to our great sorrow, left his physical body and is now with his Master in Sach Khand.

Sant Kirpal Singh Ji did not use the term "spiritual revolution," as far as I know, until late in his career; but the term described a concept which had been central to his teaching from the beginning. Quoting Jesus (and John the Baptist), he would often say, "Change your mind! For the Kingdom of God is at hand" - "Change your mind" being a more accurate rendering of the Greek metanoeite, usually found in English as "repent." But the word literally means "turn around," and implies the kind of shifting of angle of vision that we associate with the word "revolution." And all his life, Kirpal Singh taught the kind of turning around, or mind change, that enables us to see the presence of God in all life: to know that "God resides in every heart" and to act accordingly. This is the essence of the spiritual revolution, and it is a message that those of us living in this contemporary hell we call our world need to hear if we are to survive with a recognizably human soul.

The talks found in this book were given over a period of ten years, from 1963 to 1973. Most of them were given in English on Kirpal Singh's second and third world tours (1963-64 and 1972, respectively), but two of them (talks 4 and 12) were given in India and are translated from the Hindi. All of the talks were published in Sat Sandesh magazine and have been reprinted from there. It was my great privilege and blessing to have been present when nine of these talks were given; they are among the happiest memories of my life -- because when a great spiritual Master gives a talk, much more than a talk is given. I have observed many times with both Sant Kirpal Singh Ji and Sant Ajaib Singh Ji that when they hold satsang, the atmosphere is charged sometimes to a degree that has to be experienced to be believed; we know that the Master is working on many levels, and that our mind and soul are hearing the essence of the talk directly, as it were, at the same time as our ears are hearing the outer words. This dimension of course is not translatable to the printed page; for that matter, neither audiotape nor videotape can get it; so that the actual physical presence of the Master is something other. There is nothing like it in this world.

Why the term "spiritual revolution"? Because the Masters are saying that the condition of the world in general is a natural expression of the human beings who make up that world; so that in order to change things, the human beings who make up that world have to change. It might seem an impossible order, but history shows that it makes more sense than anything else that has been said on the subject, and perhaps it is the only thing that will work.

The Master lays great emphasis on "right understanding," which is a revolution of our world view along these lines: First, recognizing that, since the universe is created by a Maker and pervaded by consciousness, it has a purpose. Then, that each human being (in fact, each living being) is a manifestation of that consciousness, and so the way in which we relate to each other is the test, the definition, of whether we believe in God or not. The Masters have made this point repeatedly; it's also in the Bible:

Those who say, "I love God," and hate their brothers or sisters, are liars; for those who do not love a brother or sister whom they have seen, cannot love God whom they have not seen. The commandment we have from him is this: those who love God must love their brothers and sisters also. (I John 4:20-21, NRSV)

This point cannot be made too often. Why? Because we must remember each time we meet somebody. Each time we think about someone, we have to remember, "He or she is my brother or sister, or father or mother, or son or daughter, in God." They are fellow expressions of the consciousness that created the universe, walking around in front of us. And this is the right understanding, that that consciousness created the universe, pervades it, and resides in the heart of every human being. And then, when the Masters come, if people have this understanding, they are open to receive the next thing, the opening up of what Master Kirpal calls the "secret chamber or closet" within them, which in fact is a door into a new world: we go into the closet and we find that the other end opens into infinity, and we just keep on going. And the Master's point is, it is possible for the world at large to expect this, if the right understanding which the Master refers to above has been already inculcated.

The talks in the book are divided, somewhat arbitrarily, into two parts. The talks in the first part are more general, and those in the second part more specific. But there is often a considerable overlap, so that some of the "general" talks contain very specific points, and some of the "specific" ones are very general in places. Within the parts, with the exception of the title talk, they are arranged chronologically.

The Appendices have been added because they throw light on aspects of the Master's teaching not emphasized in the body of the book. "On the Role of Women," for example, is Master Kirpal's most elaborate statement of principles that he acknowledged all his life, and which he articulated very clearly in the following interchange in Chicago on October 29, 1972, as recorded by his long-time disciple and chronicler of the Third World Tour, B. S. Gyani Ji:

The following afternoon at the Palmer House, Master was asked, "Can a woman become a Master? If so, why haven't there been any women Masters?" Master said, "Look to history; there have been women Masters. A soul is a soul; it makes no difference, man or woman. It is only according to Karma whether your body is male or female." (Sat Sandesh, January 1973, p. 20)

Of course, Master Kirpal's use of language did not always reflect this; English was not his first language, and he spoke it the way he was taught. He used "man" and "human" absolutely indiscriminately, often using the word "man" to refer to a specific woman, as I observed on several occasions. But no one should assume from his use of the word "man" that he does not mean "human," or that women are excluded from the responsibility and the promise; it is just not so, as the above extract (and Appendix I) make clear.

Although the talks included in the book stand on their own, and someone unfamiliar with Kirpal Singh can get a clear understanding of his teachings from reading it, study of some of his other books (particularly The Way of the Saints) would illuminate many passages; this book is in many ways a companion volume to that one.

I am grateful to Sant Ajaib Singh Ji for his encouragement and support in preparing this volume, and for his allowing his words to be used as an Introduction. His perspective on Kirpal is invaluable because he is a gurumukh sant, someone who has completed the spiritual revolution within himself and become a living example of what Kirpal Singh is talking about throughout this book. He sees Kirpal as he really is, not veiled as he appeared most of the time to most of us. His story of not closing his eyes when Master put the dear ones into meditation (p. xxi) always makes me think of these lines of William Blake:

God Appears & God is Light
To those poor Souls who dwell in Night
But does a Human Form Display
To those who Dwell in Realms of Day

It is the great good fortune of Kirpal's initiates that Sant Ji was able and willing to obey his Master and take on the responsibility of guiding them and initiating new seekers in the years since Master Kirpal left; thank God for him. As Kirpal Singh says in the title talk of this book:

So springtime is upon us now; there will be more fra-grant Saints, I would say now, who will come up and give us through the grace of God, a contact with the God-into-Expression Power. And this is the <d>revolution, the spiritual revolution, which is coming up -- an awakening all around.

And as Swami Ji says in Sar Bachan, "Whoever seeks the Satguru will surely find him, for the Satguru is an incarnation eternally present upon this earth."

Russell Perkins

 

 

* For a wonderful eyewitness account of Kirpal's discipleship, see "The Merciful One" in A. S. Oberoi, Support for the Shaken Sangat, pp. 57-94.