Stopping the Machine

Let’s take another concrete figure to illustrate how the ordinary human awake state and the “being” and “doing” of the mind are brought to an end. Imagine a machine at work. It runs continuously. Now, if you approach the machine and cry aloud from a distance, “Stop operating, please! Of what use is this continual whirling and revolving of yours?” Do you expect the machine to desist from its operation simply because of your words and loud cries? Certainly not! Then what is required for your purpose? You need  someone so bold and courageous as to grab hold of the machine as it is running and by sheer strength to force it to stop and to operate no more. For the machine on its own will never stop until such a one arrives who is daring enough to venture to manhandle it. Now imagine, further, that this machine has a big wheel and many sharp points. One could not seize hold of such a device even when it is at rest and stationary: to grab hold of this deadly dangerous mechanism when it is in motion would be to risk one’s life in vain, since stopping it is next to impossible by any ordinary means. So then what would an expert do to stop such a machine? First of all. he would take up some suitable instrument  and, standing at a distance, use it to break off the shay spikes. Only when this had been accomplished would he venture to use his strength directly to stop the wheel from revolving. Not otherwise.

In this analogy:

the “machine” represents the life of ordinary mankind (manusya);
the “wheel” represents birth and rebirth in the body (sharir);
the “points” represent sanskaras;
the “instruments” represent good actions proceeding from infinite Power and Knowledge (Anant Shakti and Jnan);
the “expert stopper” represents the God-Realized Sadguru

– “Meher Baba’s Tiffin lectures”, p255
21-September-1926; Meherabad

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