208. Under his Own Pillow

A rich merchant once went to a holy place to attend the temple festival. A thief too followed him, in order to knock off his purse. But, he posed as a companion proceeding to the same place, for the same festival. They stayed in a Dharmasala for the night. When everyone had gone into deep sleep, the thief who kept awake until then, rose and searched everywhere for the merchant's bag. He could not lay hands on it in spite of restless search. When day broke he told the merchant in a friendly manner: "There are thieves in this place; I hope you are taking good care of your bag, which holds all your money". The merchant replied: "O, yes, last night, I kept it right under your pillow. See, how safe it is". So saying, he took it from underneath the thief's pillow! God is like that merchant; He has placed the bag holding Atmasakthi, Atmajñana, and unalloyed happiness in the head of man. But, man is ignorant of this; he seeks to find it outside himself.