It is said, "When a pupil is ready, the Master appears." This means that such is the wonderful sensitivity of the mind, such is the reality of telepathic power, that when a man's search for truth has reached a crisis, he will meet the man who or the book which can best resolve that crisis. But the crisis itself must be filled with uncertainty and doubt, with helplessness and despair before the mysterious forces of the Overself will begin to move towards his relief. It should seem to him the most momentous consequence that it shall be brought to a satisfactory end, if life in the future is to have any meaning for him at all. There must be a sense of inner loneliness so acute that outer loneliness compares as nothing with it. There must be no voice within his world which can speak to his condition. This critical period must fill his mind with exaggeration of its own self-importance to such an extent as to blot out every other value from life. It will be at such an opportune moment, when his search for truth will be most intense and the required preparation for meeting its bearer most complete, that the bearer himself will arise and bring into his night the joyful tidings of dawn. The influence of such a man or his book at such a period is incalculable. Emerson gives its innermost meaning in his lines, "If we recall the rare hours when we encountered the best persons, we there found ourselves. . . . God's greatest gift is a Teacher." The seeker knows at last that even if he has not found the truth he is at least on the way to finding it. He has begun to find harmony with himself.
-- Notebooks Category 1: Overview of the Quest > Chapter 6: Student-Teacher > # 120