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The Story of Mushkil Gusha

When a number of people come together, and if these people are harmonized in a certain way, excluding some who make for disharmony – we have what we call an event. This is by no means what is generally understood in contemporary cultures as an event. For them, something which takes place and which impresses people by means by subjective impacts – is called an event. This is what some term a ‘lesser event’, because it takes place in the lesser world, that of human relationships easily produced, synthesized, commemorated.

The real event, of which the lesser event is a useful similitude (not more and no less) is that which belongs to the higher realm.

We cannot accurately render a higher event in stilted terrestrial representations and retain accuracy. Something of surpassing importance in a higher realm could not entirely be put in terms of literature, science, or drama, without loss of essential value. But certain tales, providing that they contain elements from the high-event area which may seem absurd, unlikely, improbable or even defective, can (together with the presence of certain people) communicate to the necessary area of the mind the higher event.

Why should it be valuable to do so? Because familiarity with the ‘higher event’, however produced, enables the individual’s mind to operate in the high realm.

The tale of Mushkil Gusha is an example. The very ‘lack of completeness’ in the events, the ‘untidiness’ of the theme, the absence of certain factors which we have come to expect in a story: these in this case are indications of the greater parallel.

The Story of Mushkil Gusha

ONCE upon a time, not a thousand miles from here, there lived a poor old woodcutter, who was a widower, and his little daughter. He used to go every day into the mountains to cut firewood which he brought home and tied into bundles. Then he used to have breakfast and walk into the nearest town, where he would sell his wood and rest for a time before returning home.

One day, when he got home very late, the girl said to him: ‘Father, I sometimes wish that we would have some nicer food, and more and different kinds of things to eat.’

‘Very well, my child,’ said the old man, ‘tomorrow I shall get up much earlier than I usually do. I shall go further into the mountains where there is more wood, and I shall bring back a much larger quantity than usual. I will get home earlier and I will be able to bundle the wood sooner, and I will go into town and sell it so that we can have more money and I shall bring you back all kinds of nice things to eat.’

The next morning the woodcutter rose before dawn and went into the mountains. He worked very hard cutting wood and trimming it and made it into a huge bundle which he carried on his back to his little house.

When he got home, it was still very early. He put his load of wood down, and knocked on the door, saying, ‘Daughter, Daughter, open the door, for I am hungry and thirsty and I need a meal before I go to market.’

But the door was locked. The woodcutter was so tired that he lay down and was soon fast asleep beside his bundle. The little girl, having forgotten all about their conversation the night before, was fast asleep in bed. When he woke up a few hours later, the sun was high. The woodcutter knocked at the door again and again and said, ‘Daughter, Daughter, come quickly; I must have a little food and go to market to sell the wood; for it is already much later than my usual time of starting.’

But, having forgotten all about the conversation the night before, the little girl had meanwhile got up, tidied the house, and gone out for a walk. She had locked the door assuming in her forgetfulness that her father was still in the town.

So the woodcutter thought to himself, ‘It is now rather late to go into the town. I will therefore return to the mountains and cut another bundle of wood, which I will bring home, and tomorrow I will take a double load to market.’

All that day the old man toiled in the mountains cutting wood and shaping the branches. When he got home with the wood on his shoulders, it was evening.

He put down his burden behind the house, knocked on the door and said, ‘Daughter, Daughter, open the door for I am tired and I have eaten nothing all the day. I have a double bundle of wood, which I hope to take to market tomorrow. Tonight I must sleep well so that I will be strong.’

But there was no answer, for the little girl when she came home had felt very sleepy, and had made a meal for herself, and gone to bed. She had been rather worried at first that her father was not at home, but she decided that he must have arranged to stay in the town overnight.

Once again the woodcutter, finding that he could not get into the house, tired, hungry and thirsty, lay down by his bundles of wood and fell fast asleep. He could not keep awake, although he was fearful for what might have happened to the little girl.

Now the woodcutter, because he was so cold and hungry and tired, woke up very, very early the next morning: before it was even light.

He sat up, and looked around, but he could not see anything. And then a strange thing happened. The woodcutter thought he heard a voice saying: ‘Hurry, hurry! Leave your wood and come this way. If you need enough, and you want little enough, you shall have delicious food.’

The woodcutter stood up and walked in the direction of the voice. And he walked and he walked; but he found nothing.

By now he was colder and hungrier and more tired than ever, and he was lost. He had been full of hope, but that did not seem to have helped him. Now he felt sad, and he wanted to cry. But he realized that crying would not help him either, so he lay down and fell asleep.

Quite soon he woke up again. It was too cold, and he was too hungry, to sleep. So he decided to tell himself, as if in a story, everything that had happened to him since his little daughter had first said that she wanted a different kind of food.

As soon as he had finished his story, he thought he heard another voice, saying, somewhere above him, out of the dawn, ‘Old man, what are you doing sitting there?’

‘I am telling myself my own story,’ said the woodcutter.

‘And what is that?’ said the voice.

The old man repeated his tale. ‘Very well,’ said the voice. And then the voice told the old woodcutter to close his eyes and to mount as it were, a step. ‘But I do not see any step,’ said the old man. ‘Never mind, but do as I say,’ said the voice.

The old man did as he was told. As soon as he had closed his eyes he found that he was standing up and as he raised his right foot he felt that there was something like a step under it. He started to ascend what seemed to be a staircase. Suddenly the whole flight of steps started to move, very fast, and the voice said, ‘Do not open your eyes until I tell you to do so.’

In a very short time, the voice told the old man to open his eyes. When he did he found that he was in a place, which looked rather like a desert, with the sun beating down on him. He was surrounded by masses and masses of pebbles; pebbles of all colors: red, green, blue and white. But he seemed to be alone. He looked all around him, and could not see anyone, but the voice started to speak again.

‘Take up as many of these stones as you can,’ said the voice, ‘Then close your eyes, and walk down the steps once more.’

The woodcutter did as he was told, and he found himself, when he opened his eyes again at the voice's bidding, standing before the door of his own house.

He knocked at the door and his little daughter answered it. She asked him where he had been, and he told her, although she could hardly understand what he was saying, it all sounded so confusing.

They went into the house, and the little girl and her father shared the last food which they had, which was a handful of dried dates. When they had finished, the old man thought that he heard the voice speaking to him again, a voice just like the other one which had told him to climb the stairs.

The voice said, ‘Although you may not know it yet, you have been saved by Mushkil Gusha. Remember that Mushkil Gusha is always here. Make sure that every Thursday night you eat some dates and give some to any needy person, and tell the story of Mushkil Gusha. Or give a gift in the name of Mushkil Gusha to someone who will help the needy. Make sure that the story of Mushkil Gusha is never, never forgotten. If you do this, and if this is done by those to whom you tell the story, the people who are in real need will always find their way.’

The woodcutter put all the stones which he had brought back from the desert in a corner of his little house. They looked very much like ordinary stones, and he did not know what to do with them.

The next day he took his two enormous bundles of wood to the market, and sold them easily for a high price. When he got home he took his daughter all sort of delicious kinds of food, which she had never tasted before. And when they had eaten it, the old woodcutter said, ‘Now I am going to tell you the whole story of Mushkil Gusha. Mushkil Gusha is the remover of all difficulties. Our difficulties have been removed through Mushkil Gusha and we must always remember it.’

For nearly a week after that the old man carried on as usual. He went into the mountains, brought back wood, had a meal, took the wood to market and sold it. He always found a buyer without difficulty.

Now the next Thursday came, and, as it is the way of men, the woodcutter forgot to repeat the tale of Mushkil Gusha.

Late that evening, in the house of the woodcutter's neighbours, the fire had gone out. The neighbours had nothing with which to re-light the fire, and they went to the house of the woodcutter. They said, ‘Neighbour, neighbour, please give us a light from those wonderful lamps of yours which we see shining through the window.’

‘What lamps?’ said the woodcutter.

‘Come outside,’ said the neighbours, ‘and see what we mean.’

So the woodcutter went outside and then he saw, sure enough, all kinds brilliant lights shining through the window from the inside.

He went back to the house, and saw that the light was streaming from the pile of pebbles which he had put in the corner. But the rays of light were cold, and it was not possible to use them to light a fire. So he went out to the neighbors and said, ‘Neighbors, I am sorry, but I have no fire.’ And he banged the door in their faces. They were annoyed and confused, and went back to their house, muttering. They leave our story here.

The woodcutter and his daughter quickly covered up the brilliant lights with every piece of cloth they could find, for fear that anyone would see what a
treasure they had. The next morning, when they uncovered the stones, they discovered that they were precious, luminous gems.

They took the jewels, one by one, to neighboring towns, where they sold them for a huge price. Now the woodcutter decided to build for himself and for his daughter a wonderful palace. They chose a site just opposite the castle of the king of their country. In a very short time a marvelous building had come into being.

Now that particular king had a beautiful daughter, and one day when she got up in the morning, she saw a sort of fairy-tale castle just opposite her father's and she was amazed. She asked her servants, ‘Who has built this castle? What right have these people to do such a thing so near to our home?’

The servants went away and made enquiries and they came back and told the story, as far as they could collect it, to the princess.

The princess called for the little daughter of the woodcutter, for she was angry with her, but when the two girls met and talked they soon became fast friends. They started to meet every day and went to swim and play in the stream which had been made for the princess by her father. A few days after they first met, the princess took off a beautiful and valuable necklace and hung it up on a tree just beside the stream. She forgot to take it down when she came out of the water, and when she got home she thought it must have been lost.

The princess thought a little and then decided that the daughter of the woodcutter had stolen her necklace. So she told her father, and he had the
woodcutter arrested; he confiscated the castle and declared forfeit everything that the woodcutter had. The old man was thrown into prison, and the daughter was put into an orphanage.

As it was the custom in that country, after a period of time the woodcutter was taken from the dungeon and put in the public square, chained to a post, with a sign around his neck. On the sign was written ‘This is what happens to those who steal from Kings.’

At first people gathered around him, and jeered and threw things at him. He was most unhappy.

But quite soon, as is the way of men, everyone became used to the sight of the old man sitting there by his post, and took very little notice of him. Sometimes people threw him scraps of food, sometimes they did not.

One day he overheard somebody saying that it was Thursday afternoon. Suddenly, the thought came into his mind that it would soon be the evening of Mushkil Gusha, the remover of all difficulties, and that he had forgotten to commemorate him for so many days. No sooner had this thought come into his head, than a charitable man, passing by, threw him a tiny coin. The woodcutter called out: ‘Generous friend, you have given me money, which is of no use to me. If, however, your kindness could extend to buying one or two dates and coming and sitting and eating them with me, I would be eternally grateful to you.’

The other man went and bought a few dates. And they sat and ate them together. When they had finished, the woodcutter told the other man the story of Mushkil Gusha. ‘I think you must be mad,’ said the generous man. But he was a kindly person who himself had many difficulties. When he arrived home after this incident, he found that all his problems had disappeared. And that made him start to think a great deal about Mushkil Gusha. But he leaves our story here.

The very next morning the princess went back to her bathing-place. As she was about to go into the water, she saw what looked like her necklace down at the bottom of the stream. As she was going to dive in to try to get it back, she happened to sneeze. Her head went up, and she saw that what she had thought was the necklace was only its reflection in the water. It was hanging on the bough of the tree where she had left it such a long time before. Taking the necklace down, the princess ran excitedly to her father and told him what had happened. The King gave orders for the woodcutter to be released and given a public apology. The little girl was brought back from the orphanage, and everyone lived happily ever after.

These are some of the incidents in the story of Mushkil Gusha. It is a very long tale and it is never ended. It has many forms. Some of them are even not called the story of Mushkil Gusha at all, so people do not recognise it. But it is because of Mushkil Gusha that his story, in whatever form, is remembered by somebody, somewhere in the world, day and night, wherever there are people. As his story had always been recited, so it will always continue to be told.

Will you repeat the story of Mushkil Gusha on Thursday nights, and help the
work of Mushkil Gusha?

A hand and a foot do not clap together. ~ Proverb


As long as it is Thursday evening, we will commemorate Mushkil Gusha. So as it is said many times, that Mushkil Gusha’s story is known by many names in many lands and many times not even known as Mushkil Gusha, but the theme is practically the same.

So we have told the story of the old woodcutter and his daughter many times, so we will take another. Mushkil Gusha is the remover of all difficulties, and obviously is of a Spiritual nature. And the nearest thing that probably in the English language that would fit it would be the Holy Ghost, or the Paraclete. And, we know that the Paraclete or the Holy Ghost, or X, is in every human being. Lives with them, it does their breathing, does their seeing, does their hearing, does their tasting, and everything and certainly it would be well worth while to be commemorative of X on at least Thursday evenings.

Now communication between X and Awareness can be a two way street. Basically, it is a one way street because the Awareness is so busy getting what it wants and responding to stimuli etc. that is never really hears anything from X. But X will communicate to awareness and very plain discussion.

Now most of the time we get it by symbols and then we try to shut it up. So, if a person has a pain, it is X, Life, Spirit, in that person, Mushkil Gusha, that is trying to tell the person that something is not functioning right and they can do something about it. But ordinarily the person doesn’t want to hear that so they do something to make themselves incapable of hearing X or Mushkil Gusha, the remover of difficulties so they cover it up with and use many, many forms of things from distractions to drugs to alcohol to many other means of effort to keep from hearing X from talking to them in the symbol.

In order to hear X you have to be somewhat quiet as the old wood cutter sometimes would sit down he was at the end of his rope he didn’t know where to go and as Mushkil Gusha told the old woodcutter, when your need is great enough and your want is small enough. Only when your want is small enough does the mind become quiet enough for the two way communication to take place and be heard. As long as the wants are yammering away as loud as they can obviously we never hear that voice of X coming through the other way. So it effectively keeps it off. When the want was little, small enough and the need was great enough, then Mushkil Gusha appeared to remove the difficulty.

Now what really happens is fairly easy if we stop to see that a mind has to be quiet before we can pick up communication from X. In other words, X is not going to scream, holler and kick at the door like a banshee, it is calm, serene and peaceful but it does respond. And it does hear for all that is asked of it.
We sometimes call it reporting, but no matter where you ask or report or tell or whatever as long as the need is great enough and the want is small enough that the conditioned or fragmented awareness can be quiet long enough for it to hear then there is information that comes through. Now in the story of the old woodcutter, it seems that when he forgot, that terrible things happened to him but that’s not because he forgot, that he was being punished in any way whatsoever, because X loves it’s awareness and it’s body continually. But it is when he paid no attention to it, all of his attention from higher consciousness level got away and he got concerned with a hundred and one things and was not thinking of Mushkil Gusha; we would say he was asleep.
In the fact of being Spiritually awake, being Spiritually awake, is possibly being in a condition of service, without being thought up that have to do this, I must do it or in any other way, but it’s there, let’s do it. And without regard to personalities, etc, and so forth. Where there, some of the notes of the Scriptures where the Christ was condemned because he talked to hookers and because he talked to foreigners and because he would heal a person from another land as quick as he did the Hebrew people and the Hebrew people were scandalized by it because they felt he should only be doing things for them because they were the chosen folks.

But he saw that he worked for a Roman soldier slave boy just as much as he would for some of the high muck Edie mucks of the Judaic religion, probably a little more. And because the man came in the right frame of mind and asked for assistance, the assistance was given. Nobody had to go see him or anything of the sort, the assistance was given.

So if we can begin to see that if we can have a quiet mind and the only way we can have a quiet mind is not to have a lot of wants because if we want a bunch of things the mind is yammering constantly and conniving as to how it can get it and if the person is somewhat of a religious bent they might pray but if they pray they are telling Life what to give them as if they already know.

We have been reading a little book about a sweet little girl from down in the tropics and she didn’t outline things as to how it would come, she just knew it was going to work out well. And I would say she had an example constantly that Mushkil Gusha was there because in the story which is obviously fiction but probably based upon some semblance of a real person somewheres or other. Instead of being tagged with wants she saw that everything would be alright as far as things went and she was in many, many, many difficulties that were extreme. And she was always delivered by seemingly almost miraculous methods. We can say miraculous if we want to go for those words but that she was delivered by her having a quiet mind and that was one of the things she always worked at was to get her mind quiet even if she had to leave everybody and go out and sit in the jungle by herself. She got her mind quiet and then she’d come in and say everything was all right.

Now her need was obviously in many cases very intense but to all appearances her wants were very, very nil. She wasn’t wanting anything for herself or what have you. And I think that is as much a story of Mushkil Gusha as the story of the old woodcutter is.

So let’s see if we can have ourselves in the mental condition that we can have, see something that is needed that we can say that it will be taken care of and be quite willing to serve - but we have no desire to say how it will come about because in many of the ways that are relieved is as the Scripture says, “Strange and wondrous is the way of the Lord.” Lord being X, Awareness, Life, whatever word one wants to use there.

That is constantly communicating to the conscious mind or the interest of Awareness and using it if it will allow it to be used. You allow the whole thing to be used. But most of the time, the conscious mind the educated awareness, is so cock sure that it knows exactly what ought to be, how it ought to be done and etc. that and its wants are so great that it is yammering away that it never hears the voice of Life which is Wisdom itself. And possibly would be the only really transforming situation in a human life that if a person’s life is; all the action is determined by X and that the Awareness sees what is but doesn’t see what ought to be done about it, how it ought to be done or anything else, it’s job is to see what is without judgment. And that it knows that the other things will be alright without going into all the detailing of trying to tell the Creative Power what to do.

I have been to churches and I have also been to dinners where somebody said to give the blessing and they gave great detailed instructions to God. So if they are capable of giving detailed instructions to God, obviously God is a dumb cluck and would not know how to do anything, so why tell him about it and if your so damn smart and know exactly how to do it why don’t you go do it instead of telling the Lord how to do it. I, at one time interfered in a long dissertation of a blessing. I was serving dinner to about 50 some people and I announced that dinner was ready and they called upon one of dear Sisters to give the blessing; 34 minutes later she was still telling the Lord what to do and I walked out and slapped the table very hard and said “Dinner is served!” And we started setting it down in front of them.

I don’t know what happened to the rest of her prayer, but anyway it got shut off along about there somewheres, because this person was giving detailed instructions to the good Lord, what to do about this people, what to do about that person, what to do about the whole national situation, what to do about everything as though she knew all the answers, so I didn’t feel that in any way was I being sacrilegious by interfering in this long recitation, it would appear that she was trying to convince everybody around her that she was so smart she knew what to do about everything and everything under the sun, so I didn’t feel it was very wrong to go out and slap the table and say we are serving dinner NOW and start slopping it in front of them right quick.
So I think that if we can remember that Mushkil Gusha is a name for Life, for the inherit Spirit that emanates man. Without that Spirit there, there is a dead body laying around, whatever. And that that is quite capable and willing of communicating to us if we stop to listen, now and then, anyway. And that it can take care of all sorts of things if it is allowed to do so without the interference, but evidently it is extremely polite, and does not interfere in any way. It does take care of things in many and strange and wondrous ways.

So I think that would cover the story of Mushkil Gusha for tonight and we appreciate always remembering to consider it and possible just Thursday night is not quite adequate, probably if every day in the week was thought about it, it would probably be even better.

Good night.

This is a link to Robert Rhondell Gibson Reading the Mushkil Gusha Story.
If your browser settings are such that when you click on this link to the MP3 file and it does not play then you can "Save Target As" and download the file to your computer. [Marsha]

This is a link to 4 paintings by Bonnie Bernhard which Illustrate the story.

This is a link to a PDF file of the story.