In the heart of our heart, the aspiration, the enquiry, is only for such a thing which can quench our thirst, and nothing else. Knowledge is only making enquiry. Why? To find inner satisfaction. He is enquiring to satisfy the inner interest, inner enquiry, and when he finds it, it is finished. No more enquiry is necessary, “I have got my desired thing for which I was in a searching mood life after life. I have got that.” This is prema, affection, love, beauty, and charm, which can stop our progress with its own guarantee.
sarvaṁ karmākhilaṁ pārtha jñāne parisamāpyate
(Srimad Bhagavad-gita: 4.33)
Karma is finished where knowledge begins. And knowledge—
tapasvibhyo ’dhiko yogī jñānibhyo ’pi mato ’dhikaḥ
karmibhyaś chādhiko yogī tasmād yogī bhavārjuna
yoginām api sarveṣāṁ mad-gatenāntar-ātmanā
śraddhāvān bhajate yo māṁ sa me yukta-tamo mataḥ
(Srimad Bhagavad-gita: 6.46–7)
“When one has got My service, then everything else is finished; all eliminated, dismissed. Who has come to Me and has got full engagement, cent per cent engagement in Me, is the highest of all the yogis, all the jnanis, all the tapasvis, and all the karmis. I consider them to be the highest. All the others are attempting; they are students. But when one has got service to Me, student life, the enquiry, is finished. One will be busy then in trying to satisfy Me.”
One has engaged all one’s talents exclusively in nitya-seva, and that is also of infinite character, not finite. There are so many different departments of service—the garlands, the bed, the food, the diplomatic section—and they are also evolving. One is engaged there and fully engrossed in one’s duty. Everyone’s duty is infinite. You may use your talent to its best limit, to show what improved service you can render. The scope is there, but mainly it is service, not enquiry for any other fortune. You are not a fortune seeker any longer. Your fortune is fixed, and you are showing your genius there in that limitation. You will also find that you are thriving there most.
Spoken on 9 January 1982.
Listen to the original audio recording of this talk here.