“A musician, a poet, and a very beautiful man, Narada, who always, even while moving, continued to play on a very simple musical instrument — and remember, the more simple the instrument the more difficult it is to create great music out of it. He used to carry a simple instrument, an ektara — a one-stringed sitar. It is easy when there are many strings to create music, because you can create different notes on different strings. The ektara has only one string — that is the meaning of ektara. Ek means one; tara means string. It has become almost the symbol of Narada. You will not find a statue or a painting of him without his ektara.
He was a master musician, and a great poet — and perhaps the only man in India who knew the hilariousness of existence, who used to laugh….”
– The Messiah, Vol 1, Chapter #20
“That’s why the second book I choose is Narada’s BHAKTI SUTRAS.
His sutras begin with “athato bhakti jigyasa — now the inquiry into love….” To inquire into love is the greatest exploration, the greatest inquiry. Everything else falls short, even atomic energy. You can be a scientist even of the caliber of Albert Einstein, but you don’t know what real inquiry is unless you love. And not only love, but love plus awareness… then it becomes inquiry into love, the most difficult task in the world.
Let me repeat, it is the most difficult task in the world — love with awareness. People fall in love; people become unconscious in love. Their love is only biological, it is gravitation. They are pulled down towards the earth. But Narada is talking about a totally different love: love as meditation, as awareness. Or in scientific terms, love as levitation, against gravity. Leave gravitation for the graves; levitate, arise! And when one starts rising to love, flying towards the stars, that is athato bhakti jigyasa.”
– Books I Have Loved, Chapter #5