A story of convergence refusing conversion

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A story of convergence refusing conversion

Postby s3g » Tue May 18, 2010 7:58 pm

One evening two Moslems from the village appeared at Thakur's cottage. "We have come for initiation," they announced. "We have watched what you are doing and we believe that your prophet is greater than Mohammed."

Thakur shook his head. "Don't come to me if you wish to change your faith. Your Prophet is as dear to me as every other."

"But the teaching of Mohammed has no instructions for building and doing all these things you do. We need a guru who is concerned with here and now . . . not yesterday and tomorrow . . ."

"Although prophets must fashion their words according to the age and conditions of the time in which they appear, yet they all speak the same truth which is eternal for all men of all times. How is it possible to love one above another? Ram, Krishna, Buddha, Mohammed, Christ . . . How can a name change anything? Leave the words aside if they confuse you. Meditate on the Saint himself . . . the spirit ... the purpose and emotion of his life. Then you will understand."

The young man's lips thinned sarcastically. "You won't take us. That's what you're saying, isn't it?"

"If you seek to change your faith, I can be of no help to you." Thakur smiled suddenly. "Only look," he coaxed. "In a single day you make many appearances. You begin in a wrinkled nightshirt, with sleep-filled eyes. You work in your paddy fields and your body glistens with perspiration and your garments are streaked and spotted with earth. You bathe in the river . . . and you are naked. In the evening there is a feast ... a wedding perhaps . . . and you array yourself from head to toe in all the finery that your wife has lovingly laid out for you. Now suppose that your child were to say quite seriously, *I love my father only when he goes to weddings'?"

He pondered the two men for several moments. "Don't be distracted by the garment, brothers. Cleave to the beloved prophet of your birth. For he is your most precious link with the Supreme Father of us all."

The more aggressive of the young men swept Thakur with a hostile glance as he shrugged his shoulders. "They said you wouldn't take us I was a fool to think you would”

"If a Moslem comes to me with sincere desire to love Mohammed with all his heart ... to serve him with all his being ... I would receive him with open and joyous heart."

The Moslems withdrew, sullenly and without ceremony. In less than six weeks they were back again, this time accompanied by three friends. The same young man who had assumed the role of spokesman on the first visit did so again.

"We have studied the teachings of Mohammed every night," he explained after bowing politely, "and we see that you were right and that he is a true Prophet. We wish to love him completely, although there are questions that disturb us. We respectfully request that you become our Guru."

Thakur jumped lightly to his feet and the startled and momentarily embarrassed young man found himself caught up in a tight and laughing embrace. Each of his companions, in turn, experienced this spontaneous, electrifying show of affection before Thakur led them to Monmohini for initiation.

[From Ocean in a Teacup]
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