Personally, I am a bit surprised by Sakda's concern over charity. Certainly the Perfect Master's role is very clear and has nothing to do with charity. Jesus said the poor will always be with us, and that is Rawat's attitude as well. Rawat, very early on, correctly pointed out the futility of one man trying to "correct" or alleviate much of the physical suffering in this world. It's far too big a challenge. Whatever little help one person or one organization could accomplish, it would be all inadequate.
This is why both the donated rice and the free eyecare were so mystifying, and even Giorgio admits that he wondered about it: what was Rawat's motivation in making these apparent token attempts at charity? I wondered, too. My answer is that it was to improve his public image, and Giorgio finally came up with the explanation that it was a simiple humanitarian gesture by Rawat the individual, because he was moved to do a little something as a man, not as the Master.
Whatever the truth about this issue, it really is a minor point. What is much more to the point is what the Perfect Master actually IS supposed to be all about, and that is the process toward "enlightenment" or, to put it in current Rawatese, "inner peace."
Carlos, to his credit, turns the conversation to this precise point. And he give his own personal answer quite clearly, in fact much more clearly than premies usually do. Here it is:
"Now I walk in Music most of my day. I see Light, sometimes, merely by closing my eyes when I can feel that gentleness within calling to me. And Nam lifts each breath, and I catch her at it on many, many of them. I still have decades of practice to go before I come to the state he described once as ' All you can see is Light, all you can hear is Music, all you can feel is Nam and all you can taste is Nectar', but my daily experience confirms that he knew of what he spoke.
Don't mistake me. I am no saint, nor lay any claim to such thing. I don't know if there is one soul and many bodies, or one God and many Aspects of God, each as Immortal as the Godhead Himself. But I know that the deepest part of me, and of you, and of him, is the Immortal. And I know that because I have drunk of it enough that it shows me, clearly and simply, what its nature is.
And he is the teacher without whom this would not, for me, have been. That is my test of him as a teacher. And he passes it with flying colors."
This is very interesting to me. It explains why Carlos remains a premie, in a very basic way, and why I am no longer a premie. Rawat does not pass this test for me. I think Carlos is simply mistaken when he credits Rawat with the fact that the techniques "work" for him better than they did when he learned them from another source. The real answer is obviously his own inner potential rather than Rawat's influence. To thank Rawat is nothing but magical thinking. How could that work? It simply does not work that way. Instead, whatever belief and effort that a person gives to his own inner practice, that provides for the results, perfectly naturally, and not supernaturally at all. It is all potential within us. Rawat deserves NO credit, except for the encouragement that he gives. He DOES deserve that credit, but it is a minor one compared to the vastly exaggerated credit that he gives himself and has successfully programed the premies like Carlos to give him.
Carlos also has accepted the teaching that experiences of light, music, breath, and nectar are what brings him fulfillment in this life. That is one of the hallmarks of Rawat's teaching, and it is a fallacy. What brings us fulfillment is the love we feel and share, and the self-actualization that we accomplish; and this is independent of effort we might make in trying to go deeper and deeper into states of consciousness other than the one that we are naturally in.
This question about finally attaining the desired state of consciousness is discussed in the Sakda thread in terms of "graduation." Carlos clearly expects his ultimate fulfillment in life to be attained after decades more effort in going deeper and deeper into a conscious state that he has not yet achieved. He accepts Rawat's teaching that he must practice, practice, practice. I say that only when we give up this constant practice to improve, and this misbegotten goal of transformation into constant divine bliss, only then can we mature into our real self and find our real fulfillment in the here and now.
The fault with the Perfect Master is not that he fails to alleviate worldly concerns, but that he fails to teach his students that right way to fulfillment. His way is actually the ironic sidetrip that only leads the student to constant effort and failure, false dependence, and fake fulfillment. It is exactly opposite of what it purports to be!
One last issue brought up in the thread was the question about how many of Rawat's students have given up the practice of Knowledge. Carlos accepts the actual situation while Giorgio still refuses to look at the numbers in a realistic way. Most premies do finally give up the practice, and find substantial relief when they do. They are then free to grow in the way that people are natually and inherently capable of growing. And so many opportunities and varieties of pursuits and expressions then become available. The all-too-narrow path prescribed by the guru is seen for the confinement that it really is.