Neem Karoli Babaji, whom Mikhaël met in India in 1959
Seriousness, laughter or tears have different origins and meanings-
‘During the course of a day it is therefore natural to go from being serious to laughing, from laughter to sadness or even tears, and vice-versa. Each state has its reason for being, and the most important thing is to experience it knowing there is always something to be learned from it.
But whether it is seriousness, laughter or tears, each one of these states can have various origins and meanings. People who seek to satisfy their egotistical interests have a serious look about them, but seriousness can also be seen on the face of those who are wondering how they can save the needy. In both cases, we talk about seriousness, but there is a great difference in the way it is shown!
And laughter… Laughter can be stupid, vulgar, hypocritical or nasty, but it can also be subtle, frank, and full of love, like a bubbling spring. Yes, because the spring laughs as it generously pours forth the waters of life.
Tears of Joy
As for tears, we generally associate them with sorrow, but in reality any emotion can provoke tears. And just as we experience all sorts of emotions, we also experience all kinds of tears. There are tears of sadness, anger, fury, bitterness, and also tears of joy and wonder.
Poetry, paintings and music can bring tears to our eyes, but the same is true of certain kinds of human behaviour when it is particularly beautiful and noble. And in their texts, mystics mention tears caused by ecstasy. Whatever their cause, tears are useful since they release a certain inner tension. But of course tears of joy and wonder are the most beneficial.
But let tears of bitterness, sorrow or anger dry up; they are simply a small quantity of salty water. However, keep those that have been wrung from the depths of your soul. Tears of joy comfort us and make us more beautiful and younger.
Tears and laughter do not show weakness of character
Some people think that by never crying they show strength of character. No, not at all, it all depends on the reason for crying. When the flowers in our inner garden start to wilt or have collected dust, they need to be watered. And so tears bring them back to life and wash them gently.
And just as tears do not show any weakness of character, laughter does not always mean a lack of care or seriousness either. Seeing how Master Peter Deunov sometimes laughed so heartily made me think; I understood that laughter was more beneficial for the mind than the seriousness and austerity that many people think is characteristic of the sage. This is because there are living energies in laughter, and they nourish the brain.’
Extract from a lecture contained in…
Izvor Book 204, The Laughter of a Sage
Chapter 6, Seriousness, tears, laughter, celebration