Similarly, most great persons in history have been going through a lot of tests, hammer, trimming, and unbearable situations. They have to bear the unbearable; they have to endure the unendurable. Many things like that. And then you are tamed, then you’re trimmed, you’re sculpted into a perfect shape inside that you’re ready to do a great job. Then you have no more attachment to anything at all.
So, that is the thing. I told just one person, my attendant or somebody, I can’t remember, to book my ticket for me. And I said, “Don’t tell anybody,” of course. Well, I forgot, or maybe I didn’t tell, or maybe I forgot. And she told the other attendant. And the attendant has her best friend, and the best friend has a boyfriend, boyfriend has mama, mama has papa, papa has co-workers and whomever; the disciples, they all went to the airport. And I became a sudden star, an airport star. So I told her that was at the beginning. Even sometimes, I said, “I’m thinking of going to Japan.” I didn’t even book a ticket. I didn’t plan anything yet, everybody knew Master was going to Japan and Japanese disciples prepared everything already. Oh God! So, I say that’s why I don’t tell anybody anymore. I even go everywhere alone now, with my own suitcase, pack my own things and book tickets at the airport. I don’t book tickets at home. I don’t ask. I don’t know how to book online. And if I tell somebody to help me to book online, then everybody will be in a big line at the airport again. And at the other end of the destination, would also be a line. I don’t book online anymore. I’m afraid of the line because it’s inconvenient for the people. It’s very convenient for you, I know that; just inconvenient for the airport personnel, the police and the traffic. So, one time I went alone, I came out alone by taxi. I even go by taxi nowadays. And then the personnel at the airport, the one who checks your passport when you pass inside the gate or immigration, she asked me, “Nobody sends You off today?” She even knew that. She said it in Chinese. “Did someone send You off today?” So, I did not understand the word someone. I said, “What mean someone?” She said, “Normally, You come, a lot of people send You off. And when You come back, a lot of people see You. Today, nobody sees You off?” I said, “No, no. I left quietly, alone, by taxi. I did not book. I came to the airport, booked a ticket.” And then I went all alone.
The same when I went on the European tour. You saw me only alone. That’s why I had to drive the stick shift car because there was no taxi anymore. All of you took all the taxis that were available. Either that, or you drove your own car and took other people. And when they saw me, they all came in together, “Master, we have a car! We have a car, come with us.” Then I was so scared. I ran! I ran, and stick shift or not, I just gave it gas. Oh, my God! First time in my life, I ever drove the stick shift. And the man said it was the last car that I could rent, “Take it, or leave it.” And the manager hurried to go home because of a birthday of the daughter or something. I said, “I never drove this before.” He said, “Never mind, just open with the key, here is the brake, and when You want to switch gears, you brake, and then you press the right foot here, the left foot there, and then You go!” Oh man. And it kept stopping on the highway all the time. And I had to start it all over again, so I kept the blinking lights on all the time, and everybody passed by, feeling something. And I said, “Sorry.” All I did was just smile, and they knew there must be some idiot driving on the highway, “I wonder how the police even let such a dumb-dumb drive the car!” But the Slovenian people, they’re very friendly. They did not judge me too much. They just looked-looked and when they saw me smiling, they were also smiling, “OK, no problem!” And I survived! All this stopping in the middle; it stopped 100 times. The car just stopped by itself, I don’t know why. Maybe I pushed the wrong foot or something, and it just stopped like that. I had no idea, and then I was just fumbling and tried again, and then it worked again. And then whenever I needed to stop, then it wouldn’t run again. If I stopped, then it stopped forever. I had to retry, to fumble how to do it again. Already a very bad driver and then had to drive a car like that, the car that I had never seen in my life. In Slovenia, that’s the best car you have. I didn’t know what brand that was even. And the highway was not very big. Was it? Any Slovenian people here, or have you been there? Any of you? The highway of Slovenia is like the national lane here. Maybe that’s good also, because people don’t drive so fast, so I’m spared my life.
I thought I was murmuring. But I could not avoid it, because the European tour was very tightly packed. One day, one. The next two days, another country. So disciples were always everywhere in the airport, at the same time with me. And I wonder what kind of brain I had, going on such a trip like that all alone. No booked hotel, nothing. Just went everywhere and booked a ticket, just like that. And driving a car that you’ve never driven before. My God. But the conditions were like that. I could not have it more comfortable at that time. I could not. I could not afford the comfort. I could not. I had to go alone and do all that, alone, and many other difficult situations. Like dragging my suitcase alone up the staircase, because sometimes you don’t have the elevator. Not every country has, or not every airport has it where you want to go. And dragging it far away, and then going up and down the staircase and etc. No time to eat, no time to drink, rushing and all that stuff. But I just had to do it. Just like Lord Mahavira here, He had to wait five months and 26 days in order to find food. After five months and 26 days, He didn’t have to eat anymore. You understand, right? He didn’t have to. But He just had to do it. He just had to go begging, because that’s the way it was arranged. Just like I have to go through a lot of trouble wearing all these clothes and you-know-what inside also. And hooking this behind here, hooking in front here. And wearing this, and the high heels, and all that. Well, at least in Âu Lạc (Vietnam), later I found out that one of the Masters of Aulacese (Vietnamese) Buddhism, He predicted that there would be a woman with high heels, to come and take care of the real religion, something like that, leading the religious community. Well, at least if you don’t understand why I have to wear high heels, now you can ask these kinds of Masters, or Their disciples. And then with jewelry all over the body and wearing nice clothes and stuff like that, they all predicted it. So, OK. Well, at least I am doing God’s will. I don’t care about what anybody else thinks; I cannot care anymore. But it’s a lot of work. A lot of work, instead of this. This is the life [monks and nuns] that you should aspire to – simple. Two, three pairs of clothes, you’re happy, you’re free. True freedom is the best; it’s the best of everything. Or live like Lord Mahavira, not even a stitch (of clothing) on your body.
It is very funny how any practitioner, a true practitioner, the one who will be a Master or something, will be tested to the extent of their last endurance. But that’s the way it is actually. Just like gold, it’s not beautiful like this. It has to be grilled in the very vicious fire, and then has to be beaten, and has to be confined into a mold and shape. And then has to be even sculpted with a chisel and with a hammer, and sticking, and nail, and drill, and hole and… In order to put diamonds in, they must drill the hole, many holes, for example. And then it becomes a beautiful piece of jewelry that is the envy of the world. Similarly, most great persons in history have been going through a lot of tests, hammer, trimming, and unbearable situations. They have to bear the unbearable; they have to endure the unendurable. Many things like that. And then you are tamed, then you’re trimmed, you’re sculpted into a perfect shape inside that you’re ready to do a great job. Then you have no more attachment to anything at all. Having or not having, to you, it’s the same. You don’t even shy away from fame, but you don’t care about fame. You are just whatever the arrangement of Heavens. You are just that. You just do whatever you have to do, regardless of your own liking or not liking. But at that time, after you’ve been drilled and grilled and hammered and chiseled and punched and holed and fired, everything already, I think everything else left you. All the ego, gone. Then God can manifest. So, if you want to be great like Lord Mahavira, learn from His lessons. Like we should not fear hardship. We should not desire for comfort. If you have a comfortable place, OK, you use it. If you don’t have it, you take care of yourself. Use a tent or anything. So you’ll excuse me if I don’t want to build any more buildings. No matter what we build, we can never build enough anyway.
(Sorry.) It’s OK. I don’t know why you cry, but here people do all kinds of weird things, so it doesn’t matter. Why? (Just feel so sorry when You said You have to be molded and hammered, and made holes and everything. You have to go through the unbearable.) It’s OK! It’s OK. It’s OK. It’s the way it’s arranged. At least I look beautiful; I have clothes. (You’re very beautiful, Master.) Lord Mahavira did not have any clothes, and He didn’t eat for five-and-a-half months. Here, they feed me a lot. I am so worried I’ll get fat even. (You’re amazingly beautiful, Master.) Thank you, I’m just joking. Because nobody says I’m beautiful, I have to praise myself. Otherwise, I cannot bear all this. At home, I immediately take it off, and then just put on my old slippers and old, whatever clothes I have there. Because I keep changing places also, so I don’t always have the monk’s clothes around. But I like it, it’s simple, it’s a nice color. You just feel light and comfortable. That’s why monks, they wear these kind of clothes. They feel very comfortable. It doesn’t feel any bother. You feel like you don’t wear anything. It’s very simple. And I was thinking, I left home for a simple life, that’s why I was laughing. You were dreaming of a simple life, and look at how many husbands and wives and children you have. I have gray-haired children, big-nosed children, flat-nosed children, black children, white children, yellow, red, brown, in between. I was dreaming. I was thinking, “OK, be a monk. Oh, so good!” Because I was surrounded with monks and nuns when I was younger. I went to the temple when I was a kid. Of course, I went to the church also, and I saw the monk’s life, Buddhist or Christianity, they’re also wonderful. They live for others. They teach you good things only and they live very simply. That was my ideal. So I thought, “Oh, being a monk is so nice.” I thought. I thought. It was my dream, and it faded so quickly, quicker than I blinked my eyes.