Hans was one of Papaji’s earliest western students. When they first met he lived in Germany and he would go to India, to Haridwar, for about three months at a time, often staying in a guesthouse with Papaji. They would share a room and go on long walks along the river, mostly in silence, which is where he asked Papaji this question.
Hans said to Papaji, ‘You can stay in peace and stillness, I cannot. Why does it come and go with me? With you I see this strength, love and being perfectly at ease. My experiences pass.’
Papaji answered, ‘Why do you say this moment comes and goes and not your other experiences?’
Then Hans says, ‘I call my states of peace experiences because they are short, compared with the length of my usual life.’
But Papaji said, ‘I don’t call that experience. I call experience what comes and goes.’
Papaji wanted me to see this is your nature, it doesn’t come and go. The other things that are adopted by culture, environment and whatever – he means other conditionings like the religion – are what come and go.
Hans from Papaji Amazing Grace
This is one of the fundamental points that I’m trying to share. Some of you have your own knowing of your True Nature. I call this a glimpse because it’s like looking through veils into your True Nature. Many of you can’t really understand my answer, or the question, because you’re listening from a certain position, the normal position for ninety-nine-point-nine per cent of humanity.
If you want to experience your True Nature, if you want to know who you really are, if you want to get the full human experience in your lifetime, then what’s being discussed here is very very important. Many of you are spiritual seekers and occasionally you have this glimpse, and in this glimpse you feel very good. You tell your friend, ‘I had a spiritual experience.’
Hans is also telling Papaji that he sometimes has an experience and Papaji says, ‘No, no, not like that.’ He says that your conditioned daily life with all your ideas, concepts, judgements, all these kinds of things stored in your conditioned mind, mean that you’re constantly having different kinds of experiences. In fact very often we keep repeating the same experiences. We call it ‘my life’ and it’s almost robotic. It’s very difficult to see it’s robotic, to get an insight, unless you’re used to really looking inside or you have a friend who has some understanding and can act as a mirror for you.
What I am pointing to is something that never changes and this that never changes is in fact your True Nature. Very few people live in full awareness of their True Nature. I’ve met forty or fifty people, including Papaji, who are living like that. They are like rare tigers that maybe you feel lucky to glimpse through the trees.
Our True Nature can be described by words like love and peace. These words are pointing to something that never changes. We arrive on this planet, we leave this planet; our True Nature never changes. It’s a constant. Papaji is pointing out to Hans that what Hans calls an experience of his True Nature shouldn’t be called an experience because naturally experiences are always changing but your True Nature is a constant.