An interest can be lost, but never the intensity. Interest comes from the mind. Intensity comes from the being. After a while, maybe short or long, you get fed up with your own interest. With intensity, it is a thirst of your being. It transcends the rationale of your logic. Intensity is a call from deep within. The more you have to wait for it, the more the thirst grows, the more the fire flares up.
See the difference between light and laser. Both are made up of the same light rays but the single-pointed intense focus of the laser comes from the coherence and the common frequency of the light rays. The power of this intensity is what gives the laser the tremendous power to even burn a hole through metal. At the same time it is a controlled focus. This is what gives it the power to do even a delicate task like removing a cataract in the eye.
When your thirst for realization becomes that intense, you are ready to pay with your life for the Truth.
A beautiful story from the life of the enlightened master Bayazid:
Bayazid had been with his master for twelve years but the master had not spoken a single word to him.
One day after twelve long years, the master spoke to Bayazid , ‘Go to the hall. There is a book there. Bring me the book.’ Bayazid had been passing through that hall for twelve years every single day while coming to see the master. He replied, ‘I have never seen the book. In fact, I have never looked in the hall. I was interested only in you, not in anything else. But, if you say I will go.’
The master replied, ‘No. Stay.’
Bayazid’s whole interest had turned into focused intensity. His whole interest was just the master. The master said, ‘There is no need for the book. I was just trying to find out how completely focused you are.’
That night, the master told Bayazid, ‘Tonight sleep here.’ Bayazid lay down by the side of the master but he could not sleep. He was filled with so much intensity, his mind completely stopped in that intensity. Next morning Bayazid was dead. A new man had emerged. No instruction was ever given. He just had to wait for twelve years. That was the method for him.
If it was just an interest, there was no way Bayazid could have stayed on for twelve years without even a word from the master. Very naturally, his mind would have strongly protested saying, ‘What are you doing here? You are just wasting time. Nothing has happened till now. He is not even interested in you. How long are you going to waste time like this?’ It is the intensity that holds you on because deep down you understand, not twelve years but even twelve million lives are worth waiting for the Ultimate that the master leads you into. Even that would actually be cheap. If in a desert your thirst for water becomes really intense, you are ready to pay with your life for a glass of water. When your thirst for realization becomes that intense, you are ready to pay with your life for the Truth.
A beautiful Zen story:
A student approached a Zen teacher to learn Zen.
The teacher told him, ‘Hear the sound of one hand clapping.’ The student tried for three years and did not succeed. He was depressed that he could not do what his teacher had told him. He came in tears to the teacher saying he had to leave because he could not do what he had been told.
The teacher said, ‘Wait for one more week. Meditate constantly.’ The student stayed for one more week and meditated. Nothing happened. The teacher said, ‘Try for five more days.’ The student stayed further, yet nothing happened. The student came in despair begging to be released.
Then the teacher said, ‘Meditate for three more days. If you don’t get enlightened, you had better kill yourself.’ The second day, the student was enlightened.
When your whole being is burning with the single intense desire to realize the Ultimate, you will simply absorb the master’s instructions. The magic of transformation is bound to happen. Only then will you be open to receive him. Till then it is just an interest.
source: Living Enlightenment