THAT INSIGNIA OF AUTHORITY

At Kamarpukur there is a small lake called the Haldarpukur. Certain people used to befoul its banks every day. Others who came there in the morning to bathe would abuse the offenders loudly. But the next morning they would find the same thing. The nuisance didn’t stop. The villagers finally informed the authorities about it. A constable was sent, who put up a notice on the bank "which read: ’Commit no nuisance’. This stopped the miscreants at once.

To teach others, one must have a badge of authority; otherwise teaching becomes a mockery. A man who is himself ignorant starts out to teach others—^like the blind leading the blind! Instead of doing good, such teaching does harm. After the realisation of God one obtains an inner vision. Only then can one diagnose a person’s spiritual malady and give instruction. (164)