A mother asked when she should begin the education of her child.

"How old is she" asked the Master.

"She's five."

"Five! Hurry home! You're five years late already."

When the Master hears that a neighbouring forest had been devastated by fire, he mobolized all his disciples. "We must replant the cedars" he said.

"The cedars?" exclaimed an incredulous disciple. "But they take 2,000 years to grow!"

"In that case" said the Master, "there's not a minute to lose. We must set out at once."

A friend said to a university student "What do you go to she Master for? Will he help you earn a living?"

"No, but thanks to him I will know what to do with the living when I earn one." was the reply.

"Your religious leaders are just as blind and confused as you are" said the Master. "When confronted with life's problems all they come up with is answers from a book. But life is too large to fit into any book."

To illustrate this he told of the thug who said "This is a holdup! Give me your money or else."

"Or else what?"

"Don't confuse me. This is my first job."

"How does the Master explain the evil in the world" asked a visitor.

One disciple replied "He doesn't explain it. He's too busy doing something about it."

Said another "People are forever fighting the world or bored with it. The Master is enchanted with what he sees as stupendous, awesome, unfathomable."

The preacher was widly acclaimed for his eloquence. But he confessed to his friends that his eloquent speech never had quite the effect of the Master's unadorned pronouncements.

After living with the Master for a week he knew exactly why.

"When he speaks" said the preacher, "his speech embodies silence. My speech, alas, embodies thought."

The Master had what amounted to a veneration for the human body. When a disciple referred to it as an "earthen vessel" the Master rapturously quoted the poet Kabir:

"Within this earthern vessel
are canyons and himalayan mountains;
the seven seas are here
and a thousand million galaxies;
and the music of the spheres
and the source of waterfalls
and rivers."

When the Master met a group of teachers he spoke long and animatedly for he had been a teacher himself. The trouble with teachers, he said, is that they keep forgetting that the goal of education is not learning but life.

He told of the time he spotted a boy fishing in the river.

"Hello! Nice day for fishing!" he said to the yougster.

"Yes" came the reply.

After a while the Master said "Why aren't you in school today?"

"Well sir, like you said - it's a nice day for fishing."

And he told of the report card his little daughter got: "Meena is doing well in school. She would do much better if the pure joy of living did not impede her progress."

The Master loved to show how nature is shot through with holiness. He was once sitting in the garden when he exclaimed:

"Look at that bright blue bird sitting on the branch of that tree springing up and down, up and down, filling the world with its melody, abandoning itself to unreserved delight because it has no notion of tomorrow."

"The law is an expression of God's holy will and as such must be honoured and loved" said the preacher piously.

"Rubbish" said the Master. "The law is a necessary evil and as such must be cut down to the barest minimum. Show me a lover of the law and I will show you a muttonheaded tyrant."

He once told of his sister who got tired of pushing her daughter's baby carriage, so she had a motor put on it. Then the police stepped into the picture. First they said the powered carriage could travel three miles an hour so it had to be classified as a "self-propelled vehicle", therefore the mother would have to get a license, plates, lights and brakes, and, to crown it all, a driver's license!