A youth interrupted a hermit, who was in meditation next to a river. The young man told the hermit of his desire to become a disciple. The hermit asked him why. After some thought, the youth replied that he wanted to find God.
Jumping to his feet, the master grabbed the novice by his collar, and dragged him into the water. The hermit ducked the youth's head underwater and held him there for one minute, while the youth struggled fruitlessly to get free. Finally, the master hauled him out of the water. The hermit waited until the boy had finished coughing and spluttering.
When the youth could breathe again, the master asked him what he had wanted most when under the water.
The young man answered with a single word - air. The hermit told the youth to go home, and not to return until he wanted God as much as he had wanted air.