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First Know Yourself To Know God – Story

There is the story of a seeker who approached a Mahatma and asked him, "Sir, have you seen God?" The Mahatma shot back a query, "Why do you ask this question?" The seeker said, "If you have had the darshan of Bhagavan, I would like to know how I can also see Him".

The Mahatma said, "All right, I shall arrange a darshan for you with God, but you should first tell me who you are so that I may introduce you properly to Bhagavan". The seeker said, "My name is Devadatta Sharma".

The Mahatma said, 'That is only your name, But who are you?" The seeker replied, "I have told you, sir, I am Sharma, a Brahmin." With apparent impatience, the Mahatma said, "Come on Sir, that is just your caste, which least interests me. Who in fact are you?"

The seeker said, "I am a professor in college" The Mahatma said, "That again is not you. It is only your profession. Tell me who are you?" The poor man, getting nervous, blurted out "I, I am, I am a man." The Mahatma laughed and said, "As if I don't know! I don't want your gender. Who are you? Speak up." The seeker said "I am a member of the human race."

The Mahatma said, "That represents your genus. It applies to all human beings. I simply want to know the true identity of the person who wants to meet the Supreme Truth."

Thus the Mahatma countered everyone of the answers given by the seeker. In the end, the man realised that he knew so little about himself. The Mahatma finally gave him the upadesa: "How can a person who knows so little about himself know Bhagavan? Therefore, first know thyself. When you know thyself, you do not need anybody's help to arrange a darshan with God!"