Deaf, dumb and blind
GENSHA COMPLAINED TO HIS FOLLOWERS ONE DAY: 'OTHER MASTERS ARE ALWAYS CARRYING ON ABOUT THE NECESSITY OF SAVING EVERYONE -- BUT SUPPOSE YOU MEET UP WITH SOMEONE WHO IS DEAF, DUMB AND BLIND:
HE COULDN'T SEE YOUR GESTURES, HEAR YOUR PREACHING, OR, FOR THAT MATTER, ASK QUESTIONS. UNABLE TO SAVE HIM, YOU'D PROVE YOURSELF A WORTHLESS BUDDHIST.'
TROUBLED BY THESE WORDS, ONE OF GENSHA'S DISCIPLES WENT TO CONSULT THE MASTER UMMON WHO, LIKE GENSHA, WAS A DISCIPLE OF SEPPO.'BOW PLEASE,' SAID UMMON.
THE MONK, THOUGH TAKEN BY SURPRISE, OBEYED THE MASTER'S COMMAND -- THEN STRAIGHTENED UP IN EXPECTATION OF HAVING HIS QUERY ANSWERED.
BUT INSTEAD OF AN ANSWER, HE GOT A STAFF THRUST AT HIM. HE LEAPT BACK.'WELL,' SAID UMMON, 'YOU'RE NOT BLIND. NOW APPROACH.'
THE MONK DID AS HE WAS BIDDEN.
'GOOD,' SAID UMMON, 'YOU'RE NOT DEAF EITHER. WELL, UNDERSTAND?'
'UNDERSTAND WHAT SIR?' SAID THE MONK.
'AH, YOU'RE NOT DUMB EITHER,' SAID UMMON.
ON HEARING THESE WORDS THE MONK AWOKE AS FROM A DEEP SLEEP.
JESUS USED TO SAY to his disciples, and not only once but many times, 'If you have eyes -- look! If you have ears, then hear me!' They had eyes just like you and they had ears just like you. Then Jesus must have meant something else -- not these ears, not these eyes.
There is a different way of seeing the world and a different way of hearing -- a different way of being. When you have that different quality of seeing, God is seen; when you have that different way of hearing, God is heard; and when you have that different quality of being, you become God yourself. As you are, you are deaf, dumb, blind -- almost dead.
Deaf to God, dumb to God, blind to God, dead to God.
Nietzsche has declared that God is dead. In fact, when YOU are dead, how can God be alive to you? God is dead because you are dead. You can know God only when you live abundantly, when your life becomes an overflowing, when it is a flood. In that overflowing moment of bliss, life and vitality, for the first time you know what God is, because God is the most luxurious overflowing phenomenon.
God is not a necessity in this world. Scientific laws are a necessity -- without them the world cannot be. God is not a necessity that way. Without him the world can be, but it will be worthless. Without him you can exist, but your existence will be just a vegetable existence. Without him you can vegetate, you cannot be really alive.
God is not a necessity -- you can be there, but your being there will not be of any meaning, it will not carry any meaning at all. It will have no poetry, it will have no song, it will have no dance to it. It will not be a mystery. It may be an arithmetic, it may be a business, but it cannot be a love affair.
Without God all that is beautiful disappears, because the beautiful comes only as an overflowing -- it is a luxury. Watch a tree: if you have not watered it well, if the tree is not getting nourishment from the soil, the tree can exist but flowers will not come.
Existence will be there, but futile! It would have been better not to be, because it will be a constant frustration. Flowers come to the tree only when the tree has so much that it can share, and the tree has so much nourishment that it can flower -- flowering is a luxury!
The tree has so much that it can afford it.
And I tell you that God is the most luxurious thing in the world. God is not necessary -- you can live without him. You can live very well, but you will miss something, you will feel an emptiness in the heart. You will be more like a wound than like an alive force.
You will suffer; there cannot be any ecstasy in your life.
But how to find this meaning, this ecstasy? You will need a different way of looking.
Right now you are blind. Of course you can see matter, but matter is a necessity. You can see the tree very well but you miss the flowers; and even if you can see the flowers, you miss the fragrance. Your eyes can see only the surface -- you miss the center, the very core. Hence Jesus goes on saying that you are a blind man, you are deaf -- and you have to be dumb, because if you have not seen him what is there to say? If you have not heard him what is there to convey and communicate? If that poetry has not happened what is there to sing? You may make gestures from your mouth, but nothing will come out of it because nothing is there in the first place.
When a man like Jesus speaks he is POSSESSED; something greater than him speaks through him. When a man like Buddha speaks he is not Gautam Siddhartha who was born a son to a king; no, he is no longer that. He is no longer the body you can see and touch, he is not even the mind that you can comprehend and understand. Something of the beyond has entered, something which is not of time and space has come into time and space. A miracle has happened. HE is not speaking to you, he is just a vehicle; something else is flowing through him, he is just a medium. He carries to you something from the unknown shore. Only then can you sing -- when ecstasy has happened. Otherwise you can go on singing, but it will be superficial. You may make much noise, but noise is not speaking. You may use many words, but they will be empty. You may talk too much, but in fact how can you TALK?
When it happened to Mohammed, the first day when he came in contact with the divine, he fell on the ground, started shivering and shaking and perspiring -- and the morning was as cold as this morning. He was alone, and from the very pores of the soles of his feet he started perspiring; he was afraid. Something unknown had touched him and he was scared to death. He came running home and went to bed. His wife was very afraid.
Many blankets were put on him but still he continued shivering and his wife asked, 'What has happened? Your eyes look dazed -- and why don't you speak? Why have you gone dumb?'
And Mohammed is reported to have said, 'For the first time something is there to say. Up to now I have been a dumb man; there was nothing to say, I was making gestures from the mouth. I was talking but only my lips were moving, there was nothing to say. Now there is something I have to say -- that's why I am trembling so much. I am pregnant with the unknown, with the divine. Something is going to take birth.'
And this brings suffering, as every mother knows. If you have to give birth to a child you have to pass through many painful days, and when the birth happens there is much suffering. When life enters, it is a struggle.
For three days, it is said, Mohammed remained in his bed, absolutely dumb. Then, by and by, just as a small child starts talking, he started talking. And then the Koran was born.
You are dumb. You may be saying too many things, but remember -- you talk too much just to hide that dumbness. You talk not to communicate, you talk just to hide -- to hide the fact that you are dumb. Next time you start talking with someone, WATCH: why are you talking? Why are you so verbal? What is the need? Suddenly you will become aware that the fear is, if I remain quiet the other will think I am dumb. So you talk just to hide this fact -- and you know there is nothing to say, yet you go on talking.
I once stayed with a family and I was sitting with the man of the house, my host, when the son came in, a small child, and he asked his father if he would answer a few questions. The father said, 'I am engaged; you go and ask your mother.'
The child said, 'But I don't want to know that much! Because if she starts talking there is no end to it, and I have to do my homework -- and I don't want to know THAT much!'
People go on talking and talking and talking and without knowing why they are talking -- for what? What is there to convey? It is just to hide their dumbness. People go on moving from here to there, from this town to that; they go on traveling, and go for holidays to the Himalayas and to Switzerland -- why all this traveling, moving? They want to feel they are alive.
But movement is not life. Of course life has a very deep movement, but movement is not life. You can go on moving from one town to another, and you can cover the whole earth, but that movement is not life. Life is of course a very subtle movement -- the movement from one state of consciousness to another.
When people get stuck they start moving outwardly. Now the American has become the bona fide traveler; he travels all over the world from this corner to that -- because the American consciousness is stuck somewhere so badly that if you remain in one place you will feel you have gone dead. So move! Move from one wife to another, move from one job to another, move from one neighborhood to another, move from one town to another - - never in the history of man has this happened. In America the average time for a person to stay in a town is three years; people move on within three years -- and this is just the average, there are people who are moving every month. They go on changing -- dresses, cars, houses, wives, husbands -- everything.
I have heard that once one Hollywood actress was introducing her child to a new husband. She said, 'Now, meet your new father.'
The child said, 'Hello, I am happy to meet you! Would you like to give me your signature in my visitors' book?' -- because he had met so many new fathers.
Everything has to be changed just to feel that you are alive. A hectic search for life. Of course, life IS a movement, but not from one place to another; it is a movement from one state to another. It is a DEEP inward movement from one consciousness to another consciousness, to the higher realms of being. Otherwise you are dead. As you are, you are dead. Hence Jesus goes on saying, 'Listen! -- if you have ears. See! -- if you have eyes.'
This has to be understood first, then this story will become easier.
Then the second thing: why are you so dead? Why are you so dumb, blind, deaf? There must be something, there must be some investment in it -- otherwise so many people, millions of them, could not be in such a state. It must be paying you something, you must be getting something out of it, otherwise how is it possible that Buddhas and Krishnas and Christs go on saying, 'Don't be blind, don't be deaf, don't be dumb, don't be dead! Be alive! Be alert, awake!' -- and nobody listens to them? Even if they appeal intellectually, you never listen to them. Even if you feel in certain sublime moments of life that they are right, you never follow them. Even if sometimes you decide to follow, you always postpone it for tomorrow -- and then tomorrow never comes. What is the deep investment in it?
Just the other night I was talking to a friend. He is a very educated man, cultured -- has moved all over the world, has lived in the Soviet Union and the UK and the United States, has been to China, and this and that. Listening to him I felt he is completely dead!
And then he asked me, 'What solution would you suggest? -- because life has so many sufferings and miseries, so many injustices, so many things that hurt you. How to live life so that you don't feel hurt, so that life cannot create so many wounds in your being -- what to do?'
So I told him there are two ways: one -- which is easier but at a very great cost -- one is to become dead, to become as insensitive as possible. ... Because if you are insensitive, if you grow a thick skin around you, an armor, then you don't bother much, nobody can hurt you. Somebody insults you and you have such a thick skin that it never enters. There is injustice, but you simply never become aware of it.
This is the mechanism of your deadness. If you are more sensitive, you will be hurt more.
Then every small thing will become a pain, a misery, and it will be impossible to live -- and one has to live. There ARE problems, and there are millions of people -- there is violence all around, there is misery all around. You pass through the street and beggars are there; you have to be insensitive otherwise it will become a misery, a heavy weight on you. Why these beggars? What have they done to suffer this? And somehow deep down you will feel: I am also responsible. You simply pass by the beggar as if you are deaf, dumb, blind -- you don't look.
Have you ever LOOKED AT a beggar? You may have seen a beggar, but you have never looked at him. You have never encountered him, you have never sat with him, you have never taken his hand in your hand -- it would be too much. So open -- there is danger.
And you have to think about your wife, not about this beggar; you have to think about your children -- and you are not concerned! So whenever there is a beggar, watch: your speed increases, you walk faster and don't look that way. If you really look at a beggar you will feel the whole injustice of life; you will feel the whole misery -- and it will be too much. It will be impossible to tolerate it, you will have to do something and what can you do? You feel so helpless; you have your own problems too, and you have to solve them.
You see a dying man, what can you do? You see a crippled child, what can you do? Just the other day one sannyasin came to me and he said he was very much disturbed, because on the road when he was passing a truck almost killed a dog. The dog was already not in good shape; two legs must have been crushed before. With only two legs the dog was trying to live, and then this truck again crushed him. The sannyasin took pity, felt compassion, he took the dog in his hands -- and then he saw there was a hole in its back and millions of worms. He wanted to help, but how to help? And he became so disturbed that he couldn't sleep; he had nightmares and continuously the dog was haunting him: 'I have not done anything -- I have to do something. But what to do?' The idea came to his mind to kill the dog because that was the only thing that could be done now. With so many worms, maggots, the dog could not live. And its life would be misery, so it was better to kill it. But to kill -- wouldn't that be violence? Wouldn't that be murder?
Wouldn't that be a karma? So what to do? You cannot help. Then the best way is to be insensitive.
There are dogs and there are trucks, and things go on happening, you go on your way, you don't look around. It is dangerous to look, so you never use your eyes one hundred percent -- scientists say only two percent. Ninety-eight percent, you close your eyes.
Ninety-eight percent, you close your ears -- you don't listen to everything that is happening all around. Ninety-eight percent you don't live.
Have you ever observed how you always feel fear whenever you are in a love relationship or whenever love stays? Suddenly a fear takes over, because whenever you love a person you surrender to the person. And surrendering to a person is dangerous because the other may hurt you. Your protection is down. You don't have any armor.
Whenever you love you are open and vulnerable, and who knows, how to believe in the other?... because the other is a stranger. You may have known the other for many years but that makes no difference. You don't even know yourself, how can you know the other? The other is a stranger. And to allow the other to enter into your intimate life means to allow him to hurt you.
People have become afraid of love; it is better to go to a prostitute than to have a beloved.
It is better to have a wife than to have a beloved, because a wife is an institution. Your wife cannot hurt you more because you never loved her. It was arranged: your father and mother and the astrologer... everybody was involved except you. It is an arrangement, a social arrangement. Not much is involved. You take care of her, you arrange for her food and shelter. She takes care; she arranges the house, the food, she looks after the children - - it is an arrangement, a business-like thing. Love is dangerous, it is not a business, it is not a bargain. You give power to the other person in love, COMPLETE power over you.
The fear: the other is a stranger and who knows...? Whenever you trust anybody, fear grips.
People come to me and they say, 'We surrender to you,' but I know they cannot. It is almost impossible. They have never loved, how can they surrender? They are speaking without knowing what they are saying. They are almost asleep. They are talking in their sleep, they don't mean it, because surrender means that if I say, 'Go on top of the hill and jump!' you cannot say no. Surrender means total power has been given to the other: how can you give that?
Surrender is just like love. That's why I say only lovers can become sannyasins -- because they know a little of how to surrender. Love is the first step towards the divine, surrender is the last. And two steps is the whole journey.
But you are afraid. You would like to have your own control on your life: not only that -- you would like to control the other's life also. Hence the continuous quarrel between husbands and wives and lovers -- constant quarrel, conflict. What is the conflict? The conflict is: Who will dominate whom? Who will possess whom? It has to be settled first.
This is not a surrender but a domination -- just the opposite. Whenever you dominate a person there is no fear. Whenever you love a person there is fear, because in love you surrender and you give total power to the other. Now the other can hurt, the other can reject, the other can say NO. That's why you live only two percent, not one hundred percent. Ninety-eight percent you are dead, insensitive. And insensitivity, deadness, is very much respected by the society. The more you are insensitive, the more society will respect you.
It is said, it happened in Lokmanya Tilak's life -- one of the great Indian leaders. He lived in Poona, just this town, and before Gandhi took over and dominated the scene he was the topmost man in India -- it is said about him that he was a man of discipline, and men of discipline are always dead because discipline is nothing but how to deaden yourself. His wife died, and he was sitting in his office where he published a newspaper, KESARI -- it is still published -- when somebody reported, 'Your wife has died, come home!' Hearing this, he looked at the clock at the back and he said, 'But it is not yet time.
I only leave my office at five.'
Look at the whole thing. What type of intimacy, what type of love, what type of caring and sharing was there? This man cares about his work, this man cares about time, but not about love. It seems almost impossible that when somebody says your wife is dead, to look at the clock and then to say, 'It is not yet time. I leave my office only at five.' And the wonder of wonders is that all his biographers appreciate this incident very much.
They say, 'This is devotion to the country! This is how a disciplined man should be.' They think this is nonattachment. This is NOT nonattachment, this is not devotion to anything.
This is simply deadness, an insensitivity. And one who is insensitive towards his wife, how can he be sensitive to the whole country? Impossible.
Remember, if you cannot love a person you cannot love humanity. That may be a trick.
Those who cannot love persons -- because it is very dangerous to love a person -- they always think they love humanity. Where is humanity? Can you find it anywhere? It is just a word. Humanity exists nowhere. Wherever you go you will find a person existing. Life is persons, not humanity. Life is always personified, it exists as an individual. Society, country, humanity, are just words. Where is society? Where is the country, the motherland? You cannot love a mother, and you love a motherland? You must be deceiving somewhere. But the word is good, beautiful: motherland. You need not bother about the motherland, because the motherland is not a person, it is a fiction in your mind.
It is your own ego.
You can love humanity, you can love the motherland, you can love society, and you are not capable of loving a person -- because a person creates difficulties. Society will never create a difficulty because it is just a word. You need not surrender to it. You can dominate the word, the fiction, but you cannot dominate a person. Even with a small child it is impossible, you cannot dominate him because he has his own ego, he has his own mind, he has his own ways. It is almost impossible to dominate life but words can be easily dominated -- because you are alone there.
People who cannot love a person start loving God. They don't know what they are doing.
To talk to a person, to communicate to a person, is a difficult matter. It needs skill, it needs a very loving heart, it needs a very KNOWING heart, understanding heart. Only then can you touch a person, because to touch a person is to move in a dangerous arena -- life is throbbing there also. And each person is so unique that you cannot be mechanical about it. You have to be very alert and watchful. You have to become more sensitive if you love a person; only then does understanding arise.
But to love a god who is somewhere sitting in the sky, it is a monologue. Go to the churches -- people are talking to no one. They are as crazy as people you will find in the madhouses, but that madness is accepted by the society and this madness is not accepted, that is the only difference. Go to a madhouse; you will find people talking alone, nobody is there. They talk, and not only do they say something, they answer also. They make it LOOK like a dialogue; it is a monologue. Then go to the churches and the temples; there people are talking to God. That too is a monologue, and if they really go mad they start doing both things: they say something and they answer also, and they feel that God has answered.
You cannot do that unless you have learned how to love a person. If you love a person, by and by the person becomes the door to the whole. But one has to start with the person, with the small, with the atomic. You cannot take the jump. The Ganges cannot simply jump into the ocean, it has to start in the Gangotri, just a small stream; then wider and wider and bigger and bigger it goes, and then finally it merges with the ocean.
The Ganga, the Ganges of love, also has to start just like a small stream, with persons, then it goes on becoming bigger and bigger. Once you know the beauty of it, the beauty of surrender, the beauty of insecurity, the beauty of being open to all that life gives -- bliss and suffering both -- then you get bigger and bigger and bigger and expand, and the consciousness finally becomes an ocean. Then you fall into God, into the divine. But because of fear you create insensitivity -- and the society respects it. Society does not want you to be very alive because alive people are rebellious.
Look at a small child: if he is really alive he will be rebellious, he will try to have his own way. But if he is a dumb imbecile, an idiot, somehow stuck somewhere and not growing, he will sit in the corner perfectly obedient. You tell him to go, he goes; you tell him to come, he comes. You tell him to sit down, he sits; you tell him to stand, he stands. He is perfectly obedient because he has no personality of his own. The society, the family, the parents, will like this child. They will say, 'Look, he is so obedient.'
I heard once: Mulla Nasruddin was talking to his son; he had come with a report card from his school. Mulla was expecting that he would receive an A, and he had received a D; in fact he was the last in the class. So Nasruddin said, 'Look, you never obey me, whatsoever I say you disobey; now this has resulted. And look at the neighbors' child -- he always receives an A, always stands first in the class.' The child looked at Nasruddin and said, 'But that's a different matter -- he has talented parents.' This child is very alive, but he has his own ways.
Obedience has a certain dumbness about it, disobedience a sharp intelligence about it.
But obedience is respected because obedience gives less inconvenience. Of course that's right -- disobedience creates inconvenience. You would like a dead child because he will not create any inconvenience. You would not like an alive child -- the more alive, the more danger there is.
Parents, societies, schools, they all force obedience, they dull you; and then they respect those people. That's why in life you never see people who stand first in schools, universities; in life they are simply lost. You never find them in life, where they go... they prove themselves very talented in school, but somehow in life they are lost. It seems that the ways of school are different from the ways of life. Somehow life loves lively people - - the more lively, the more rebellious: people with their own consciousness, being, and personality; people who have their own ways to fulfill; people who are not dead. Schools prefer just the opposite. The whole society helps you to become dumb, deaf, blind, dead.
In the monasteries you will find dead people worshipped as saints. Go to Varanasi: you will find people lying down on beds of thorns, nails -- and they are worshipped like gods.
And what have they achieved? If you look at their faces you will not find more stupid faces anywhere. A person lying on a bed of nails or thorns has to be STUPID. In the first place to choose this way of life one has to be stupid. And then what will he do, what can he do by lying on the nails? He has to make his whole body insensitive. That's the only way: he must not feel it. By and by he becomes thicker-skinned, then it doesn't matter.
Then he becomes a rock, completely dead. And the whole society worships him: he is a sage, he has attained something. What has he attained? He has attained more deadness than you. Now the nails do not matter because the body has become dead.
You may not know, but if you ask physiologists they say there are already many spots in the body which are not alive; they call them dead spots. On your back there are many dead spots. Just give a needle to one of your friends, or your wife or your husband, and tell him to push the needle in your back on many spots. You will feel some spots and some you will not feel. Some spots are already dead, so when the needle is pushed in you don't feel it. Those people, they have done one thing: they have made their whole body a dead spot. But this is not growing, this is regression. They are becoming more material rather than more divine, because to be divine means to be perfectly sensitive, to be perfectly alive.
So I told that man that there is one way, and that is to be dead: that is easier, that is what everyone is doing. People differ in degrees, but in their own ways they are doing that.
You return to your home afraid of your wife; you become deaf, you don't hear what she says. You start reading your newspaper, and you put your newspaper in such a way that you don't see her. What she says you simply become deaf to, otherwise you feel, How can I live if I listen to her? You don't see that she is crying or weeping. Only when she makes it almost impossible for you, then you look -- and that look is so angry.
You go to the office, you move through the traffic, everywhere you have to create a certain deadness around you. You think it protects -- it does not protect, it only kills. Of course you will suffer less, but less blessings will come to you, less bliss also. When you become dead, suffering is less because you cannot feel it; blissfulness is less because you cannot feel it. A person who is in search of a higher blissfulness has to be ready to suffer.
This may look a paradox to you: that a man of the status of a buddha, a man who is awakened, IS blissful -- absolutely -- and also suffers absolutely. Of course he is blissful inside, the flowers go on showering there, but he suffers for everybody all around. He has to, because if you have sensitivity for blessings to become available to you, suffering will also become available to you. One has to choose. If you choose not to suffer, you don't want to suffer, then you will not attain to blissfulness either -- because they both come by the same door; this is the problem. You can close your door in fear of the enemy, but the friend also comes by the same door. And if you lock it completely and block it completely, so afraid of the enemy, then the friend cannot come either. God has not been coming to you, your doors are closed. You may have closed them against the devil, but when doors are closed they are closed. And one who needs, feels the hunger, the thirst to meet the divine, has to meet the devil also. You cannot choose one, you have to meet both.
If you are alive, death will be a great phenomenon to you. If you live totally you will die totally; if you live two percent you will die two percent. As life, so will be death. If the door is open for God it is open for the devil also.
You have heard many stories but I don't feel that you have understood: whenever God happens the devil happens just before him, because whenever the door is open the devil rushes in first. He is always in a hurry. God is not in a hurry.
So with Jesus -- when he attained to the final enlightenment the devil tempted him for forty days. When he was meditating, fasting in his aloneness, when Jesus was disappearing and he was creating a place for Christ to come, the devil tempted him.
Those forty days the devil was continuously by his side. And he tempted very beautifully and very politically; he is the greatest politician, all other politicians are his disciples.
Very diplomatically he said, 'Right, so now you have become the prophet, and you know that in the scriptures it is said that whenever God chooses a man, and a man becomes a messiah, a prophet, he becomes infinitely powerful. Now you are powerful. If you want you can jump from this hill and angels will be standing in the valley. And if you are really a messiah, fulfill whatever is said in the scriptures -- jump!'
The temptation was great and he was quoting scriptures. Devils always quote, because to convince you a scripture has to be brought in. Devils know all the scriptures by heart.
Jesus laughed and said, 'You are right but in the same scripture it is said that you should not test God.'
Then one day when he was feeling very hungry... thirty days of fasting, the devil always sitting by his side... before God comes, the devil comes; the moment you open the door he is just standing there, and he is always first in the queue. God always lags behind because he is not in a hurry, remember: God has eternity to work, the devil has not eternity to work -- moments only. If he loses, he loses, and once a man becomes divine, he will not be hurt any more... so he has to find weak moments when Jesus is disappearing and Christ has not entered. That gap is the moment where he can enter.
Then the devil said, 'But it is said in the scriptures that when a man is chosen by God he can turn even stones into bread. So why are you suffering? And PROVE this, because the world will be benefited by this.' This is diplomacy. He said, 'The world will be benefited by this.'
It seems that's how the devil has convinced your Satya Sai Baba. The world will be benefited by this because when you turn stones into bread, people will know that you are the man of God. They will come running, then you can help them. Otherwise who will come and who will listen to you?
Jesus said, 'You are right. I can turn -- but not I, God can turn stones into bread. But whenever he needs to he will tell me, you need not bother. Why are you taking so much trouble?'
Whenever you enter into meditation the first man you will find on the gate, the moment you open the door, will be the devil, because it is in fear of him you have closed the door.
And remember... but first I will tell you an anecdote, then you will understand.
In a shop they had declared a special concession for Christmas, particularly for ladies'
clothes and dresses, so there was a crowd of ladies. One man had come because his wife was ill, and she forced him to go because this was not a chance to be lost. So he stood, gentlemanly, for one hour, but he couldn't reach the counter. You know ladies, their way -- screaming, shouting at each other, moving from anywhere, no queue; and the man was thinking of a queue, so he stood. When one hour passed and he was nowhere near the counter, then he started shoving and shouting and screaming, and he started forcibly to enter the crowd and reach the counter.
One old lady shouted, 'What! What are you doing? Be a gentleman!'
The man said, 'For one hour I have been a gentleman. Now I must behave like a lady!
Remember, the devil never behaves like a gentleman, he behaves like a lady. He is always first in the queue. And God is a gentleman. It is difficult for him to be first in the queue and the moment you open the door, the devil enters. And because of your fear of him, you remain closed. But if the devil cannot enter, God also cannot. When you become vulnerable, you become vulnerable for both God and the devil -- light and dark, life and death, love and hate -- you become available for both opposites.
You have chosen not to suffer, so you are closed. You may not be suffering but your life is a boredom, because although you don't suffer as much as you will suffer if you are open, there is no blessing either. The door is closed -- no morning, no sun, no moon enters, no sky enters, no fresh air, everything has gone stale. And in fear you are hiding there. It is not a house where you are living; you have already converted it into a grave.
Your cities are graveyards, your houses are graves. Your whole way of life is that of a dead man.
Courage is needed to be open -- courage to suffer, because blessing only becomes possible then.
Now we should try to understand this beautiful anecdote: DEAF, DUMB AND BLIND.
GENSHA COMPLAINED TO HIS FOLLOWERS ONE DAY: 'OTHER MASTERS ARE ALWAYS CARRYING ON ABOUT THE NECESSITY OF SAVING EVERYONE -- BUT SUPPOSE YOU MEET UP WITH SOMEONE WHO IS DEAF, DUMB AND BLIND? HE COULDN'T SEE YOUR GESTURES, HEAR YOUR PREACHING, OR, FOR THAT MATTER, ASK QUESTIONS. UNABLE TO SAVE HIM, YOU'D PROVE YOURSELF A WORTHLESS BUDDHIST.'
Masters generally don't complain, but when they complain it means something. This is not only Gensha complaining, it is all the masters complaining. But this is their experience, and wherever you move you find deaf and dumb and blind people, because the whole society is that way. And how to save them? They cannot see, they cannot hear, they cannot feel, they cannot understand any gesture. If you try too much to save them they will escape. They will think: This man is after something, he wants to exploit me, or he must have some scheme. If you don't do very much for them they feel: This man is not for me because he is not caring enough. And whatsoever is done they cannot understand.
This is not Gensha's complaint, because enlightened persons never complain for themselves. This complaint is general, it is how it happens. A Jesus feels the same way, a Buddha feels the same way. Wherever you go, you have to meet people who are deaf, dumb, blind. You make gestures -- they cannot see; or even worse, they see something else. You talk to them -- they cannot understand, and even worse, they misunderstand.
You say something else, they understand something else again, because meaning cannot be given through words. Only words can be communicated, meaning has to be supplied by the listener.
I say a word; I mean one thing. But if ten thousand people are listening there will be ten thousand meanings, because each will listen from HIS mind, from HIS prejudice, from HIS concept and philosophy and religion. He will listen from HIS conditioning and his conditioning will supply the meaning. It is very difficult, almost impossible. It is just as if you go to a madhouse and talk to people. How will you feel? That's what Gensha feels, that's the complaint.
That's my complaint also. Working with you, I always feel a block comes. Either your eyes are blocked, or your ears are blocked, or your nose is blocked, or your heart is blocked; somewhere or other, something is blocked, a stonelike thing comes. And it is difficult to penetrate because if I do too much to penetrate it, you become afraid -- why am I interested so much? If I don't do too much, you feel neglected. This is how an ignorant mind works. Do this and he will misunderstand, do that and he will misunderstand. One thing is certain: he will misunderstand.
GENSHA COMPLAINED TO HIS FOLLOWERS ONE DAY: 'OTHER MASTERS ARE ALWAYS CARRYING ON ABOUT THE NECESSITY OF SAVING EVERYONE.'
Buddha has said that when you are saved, the only thing to do is save others. When YOU have attained the only thing to do is to spread it to others, because everybody is struggling. Everybody is on the path stumbling, everybody is moving knowingly, unknowingly, and you have attained. Help others.
And that is a necessity also, an inner necessity of energies, because a man who has become enlightened will have to live a few years, because enlightenment is not a destiny; it is not fixed, it is not caused. When it happens it is not necessarily at the moment when the body dies. There is no necessity for these two happenings to be together. Really, it is almost impossible, because enlightenment is a sudden uncaused phenomenon. You work for it but it never happens through your work. Your work helps to create the situation but it happens through something else -- that something else is called grace. It is a gift from God, it is not a byproduct of your efforts; they don't cause it. Of course they create a situation: I open the door and the light enters. But the light is a gift from the sun. I cannot create light just by opening the door. Opening of the door is not a cause to it. Non- opening of the door was a hindrance but opening of the door is not a cause -- I cannot cause. If you open the door and it is night, light will not enter. Opening the door is not creating light, but by closing the door you hinder.
So all the efforts that you make towards realization are just to open the door. Light comes when it comes. You have to remain with an open door so whenever it comes, whenever it knocks at your door, it finds you there and the door is open so it can enter. It is always a gift -- and it has to be so, because if you can attain the ultimate through your efforts it will be an absurdity. A limited mind making efforts -- how can it find the infinite? A finite mind making efforts -- all efforts will be finite. How can the infinite happen through finite efforts? The ignorant mind is making efforts -- those efforts are made in ignorance; how can they change, transform into enlightenment? No, it is not possible.
You make efforts; they are necessary, they prepare you, they open the door -- but the happening happens when it happens. You remain available. God knocks many times at your door, the sun rises every day. And remember, nowhere else is it said what I would like to say to you, although it will be a help. It is not said because if you misunderstand it can become a hindrance. There is a day for God and there is a night also. If you open the door in the night, the door will remain open but God will not come. There is a day -- if you open the door in the right moment, immediately God comes.
And it has to be so, because the whole of existence has opposites. God is also in a rest period when he sleeps. If you open the door then he will not come. There is a moment when he is awake, when he is moving -- it has to be so because every energy moves through two opposites, rest and movement, and God is infinite energy! He has movements and he has a rest. That's why a master is needed.
If you do it on your own you may be working hard and nothing is happening, because you are not working at the right moment. You are working in the night; you open the door and only darkness enters. Afraid, you close it again. You open the door and there is nothing but vast emptiness all around. You become afraid, you close it again, and once you see that emptiness, you will never forget it -- and you will be so afraid that it will take many years for you to gather courage again to open it. ... Because once you see the infinite abyss, when God is asleep, when God is in rest, if you see that moment of infinite negativity and abyss and darkness, you will be scared -- so much so that for many years you will not make another attempt.
And I feel people are afraid, they are afraid of going into meditation -- and I know that somewhere in their past life they have made some effort and they had a glimpse of the abyss at the wrong moment. They may not know it but unconsciously it is there, so whenever they come near the door and they put their hand on the knob and it becomes possible to open the door, they become afraid. They come back exactly from that moment, run back -- they don't open it. An unconscious fear grips. It has to be so, because for many lives you have been struggling and striving.
Hence the necessity of the master who knows, who has attained, and who knows the right moment. He will tell you to make all the efforts when it is the night of God. And he will not tell you to open the door. He will tell you to prepare in the night, prepare as much as you can, be ready, and when the morning strikes and the first rays have entered he will tell you to open the door. Sudden illumination! Then it is totally different because when the light is there it IS totally different.
When God is awake then the emptiness is not there. It is a fulfillment; it is perfect fulfillment. Everything is full, more than full -- it is everflowing perfection. It is the peak, not the abyss. If you open the door in the wrong moment, it is the abyss. You will get dizzy, so dizzy that for many lives together you will never attempt it. But only one who knows, only one who has become one with God, only one who knows when the night is, and when the day, can help, because now they happen in him also -- he has a night, he has a day.
Hindus had a glimpse of this and they have a beautiful hypothesis: they call it Brahma's day, God's day. When the creation is there they call it God's day -- but the creation has a time limit, and the creation dissolves and Brahma's night, God's night, starts. Twelve hours of Brahma's day is the whole creation. Then, tired, the whole existence disappears into nonexistence. Then for twelve hours it is Brahma's night. For us it is millions and millions of years, for God it is twelve hours -- his day.
Christians also had a theory, or a hypothesis -- because I call all religious theories hypotheses, for nothing is proved, nothing can be proved by the very nature of the thing.
They say God created the world in six days, then on the seventh day he rested. That's why Sunday is a rest day, a holiday. Six days he created, and on the seventh day he rested.
They had a glimpse that even God must rest.
These are both hypotheses, both beautiful, but you have to find the essence of it. The essence is that every day God also has a night and a day. And every day there is a right moment to enter and a wrong moment; in the wrong moment you will be against the wall, in the right moment you simply enter. Because of this those who have knocked at the wrong moment say that to attain enlightenment is a gradual thing, you attain it by degrees; and those who have come to the door in the right moment say enlightenment is sudden, it happens in a moment. A master is needed to decide when is the right moment.
It is reported that Vivekananda started his disciplehood and then one day he attained the first glimpse. You can call it SATORI, the zen word for SAMADHI, because it is a GLIMPSE, not a permanent thing. It is just as if clouds are not there in the sky -- the sky is clear and from a distance of one thousand miles you have a glimpse of Everest in all its glory, but then the sky becomes cloudy and the glimpse is again lost. It is not attainment, you have not reached Everest, you have not reached the top; from thousands of miles you had a glimpse -- that is satori. Satori is a glimpse of samadhi. Vivekananda had a satori.
In Ramakrishna's ashram there were many people, many people were working. One man, his name was Kalu, a very simple man, a very innocent man, was also working in his own way -- and Ramakrishna accepted EVERY way. He was a rare man; he accepted every technique, every method, and he said everybody has to find his own way, there is no superway. And this is good, otherwise there would be such a traffic jam! So it is good, you can walk on your own path. Nobody else is there to create any trouble or make it crowded.
That Kalu was a very simple man. He had at least one hundred gods -- as Hindus are lovers of many gods, one is not enough for them. So they will put in their worship place this god, that god, whatsoever they can find; they will even put calendars there. There is nothing wrong in it; if you love it, it is okay. But Vivekananda was a logician, a very keen intellect. He always argued with this innocent man and he could not answer.
Vivekananda said, 'Why this nonsense? One is enough, and the scriptures say that he is one, so why these one hundred and one gods?' And they were all sorts of shapes, and Kalu had to work with these gods at least three hours in the morning and three in the evening -- the whole day was gone, because with every god he had to work, and however fast he worked it took three hours in the morning and three in the evening. But he was a very very silent man and Ramakrishna loved him.
Vivekananda always argued, 'Throw these gods!' When he had a glimpse of satori he felt very powerful. Suddenly the idea came to him that in this power, if he simply sent a telepathic message to Kalu -- he was worshipping in his room, this was time for worship - - to take all his gods to the Ganges and throw them, it would happen.
He simply sent a message. Kalu was really a simple man. He gathered all his gods into a bed sheet and carried them towards the Ganges.
From the Ganges Ramakrishna was coming, and he said, 'Wait! This is not you who is going to throw them. Go back to your room and put them in their place.' But Kalu said, 'Enough! Finished!'
Ramakrishna said, 'Wait and come with me!'
He knocked at Vivekananda's door. Vivekananda opened the door and Ramakrishna said, 'What have you done? This is not good and this is not the right moment for you. So I will take your key of meditation and will keep it with me. When the right moment comes I will give it to you.' And for his whole life Vivekananda tried in millions of ways to attain, but he couldn't get that glimpse again.
Just before he died, three days before, Ramakrishna appeared in a dream and he gave him the key. He said, 'Now you can take the key. Now the right moment is here and you can open the door.'
And the next day in the morning he had the second glimpse.
A master knows when it is the right time. He helps you, prepares you for the right moment, and he will give you the key when the right moment is there; then you simply open the door and the divine enters -- because if you open the door and darkness enters it will look like death, not like life. Nothing is wrong in this but you will get scared, and you can get so scared that you may carry that fear for ever and ever.
Buddha says that whenever you attain, start helping others, because all your energies that were moving into desire... now that door is finished, that travel is no more, that trip is no more; now let all your energies which were moving in desiring, VASANA, become compassion, let them become KARUNA. And there is only one compassion -- how to help the other to attain the ultimate, because there is nothing else to be attained. All else is rubbish. Only the divine is worth attaining. If you attain that you have attained all; if you miss that you have missed all.
When one becomes enlightened he lives for a few years before the body completes its circle. Buddha lived on for forty years because the body had got a momentum: from the parents the body had got chromosomes, from his own past karma the body had got a life circle. He was to live eighty years, enlightened or not. If enlightenment became possible or if it happened, then too he had to live eighty years. It happened nearabout when he was forty; he lived forty years more. What to do with the energies now? Now there is no desire, no ambition. And you have infinite energies flowing. What to do with those energies? They can be moved into compassion. Now there is no need for meditation either; you have attained, you are overflowing -- now you can share. Now you can share with millions, you can give it to them.
So Buddha has made this a part of his basic teaching. He calls the first part DHYANA, meditation, and the second part PRAJNA, wisdom attainment. Through meditation you reach to prajna. These are your inward phenomena, two parts: you meditated, now you have attained. Now to balance it with the outer -- because a man of enlightenment is always balanced. Outside, when there was no meditation inside, there was desire. Now there is wisdom inside, there should be compassion. The outer energies should become compassion; the inner energies have become wisdom, enlightenment. Enlightenment inside, compassion outside. The perfect man is always balanced. So Buddha says go on and on and help to save people.
Gensha complained: how to do it if you come to somebody who is deaf, dumb and blind?
-- and you almost always come across such people because only they are there. You don't come across a buddha, and a buddha doesn't need you. You come across an ignorant person, not knowing what to do, not knowing where to move. How to help him?
TROUBLED BY THESE WORDS, ONE OF GENSHA'S DISCIPLES WENT TO CONSULT THE MASTER UMMON.
Ummon was a brother disciple to Gensha -- they were disciples to the same teacher, Seppo. So what to do? Gensha has said such a troubling thing to this man: how to help people? He went to Ummon.
Ummon is a very famous master. Gensha was a very silent one. But Ummon had thousands of disciples and he had many devices to work with them. And he was a man like Gurdjieff -- he would create situations, because only situations can help. If words can't help because you are dumb, you are deaf -- words can't help. If you are blind, gestures are useless. Then what to do? Only situations can help.
If you are blind, I cannot show you the door just by gesture because you can't see. I cannot tell you about the door because you are deaf and you cannot listen. Really, you cannot even ask the question, 'Where is the door?' -- because you are dumb. What to do? I have to create a situation.
I can take hold of your hand, I can take you by my hand towards the door. No gesture, no word. I have to DO something; I have to create a situation in which the dumb, the deaf and the blind can move.
TROUBLED BY THESE WORDS, ONE OF GENSHA'S DISCIPLES WENT TO CONSULT THE MASTER UMMON.
... Because he knew well that Gensha wouldn't say much; he was not a man of many words and he never created any situation; he would say things and he would keep quiet.
People had to go to other masters to ask what he meant. He was a different type, a silent type of man, like Ramana Maharshi; he would not say much. Ummon was like Gurdjieff.
He was also not a man of words, but he would create situations, and he would use words only to create situations.
HE WENT TO CONSULT THE MASTER UMMON WHO, LIKE GENSHA, WAS A DISCIPLE OF SEPPO.
And Seppo was totally different from both. It is said he never spoke. He remained completely silent. So there was no problem for him -- he never came across a deaf, dumb and blind man because he never moved. Only people who were in search, only people whose eyes were slightly opening, only people who were deaf but if you spoke loudly they could hear something... so that's why many people became enlightened near Seppo because only those who were just borderline cases reached him.
This Ummon and this Gensha, these two disciples became enlightened with Seppo, a totally silent man -- he would simply sit and sit and do nothing. If you wanted to learn you could be with him, if you didn't want to you could go. He would not say anything.
YOU had to learn, HE would not teach. He was not a teacher, but many people learned.
The disciple went to Ummon.
'BOW PLEASE,' SAID UMMON.
He started immediately, because people who are enlightened don't waste time, they simply jump to the point immediately.
'BOW PLEASE,' SAID UMMON.
THE MONK, THOUGH TAKEN BY SURPRISE....
... Because this is no way! You don't order anybody to bow. And there is no need -- if somebody wants to bow he will bow, if he wants to pay you respect, he will pay it. If not, then not. What type of man is this Ummon? He says 'Bow please' before the monk has asked anything; he has just entered his room, and Ummon says 'Bow please.'
THE MONK, THOUGH TAKEN BY SURPRISE, OBEYED THE MASTER'S COMMAND -- THEN STRAIGHTENED UP IN EXPECTATION OF HAVING HIS QUERY ANSWERED.
BUT INSTEAD OF AN ANSWER, HE GOT A STAFF THRUST AT HIM. HE LEAPT BACK.'WELL,' SAID UMMON, 'YOU'RE NOT BLIND. NOW APPROACH.'
He said: You can see my staff, so one thing is certain, you are not blind. Now approach.
THE MONK DID AS HE WAS BIDDEN. 'GOOD,' SAID UMMON, 'SO YOU'RE NOT DEAF EITHER.'
You can listen: I say approach and you approach.
'WELL, UNDERSTAND?' 'UNDERSTAND WHAT SIR?' SAID THE MONK.
What is he saying? He says:
'WELL, UNDERSTAND?' 'UNDERSTAND WHAT SIR? SAID THE MONK.'AH, YOU'RE NOT DUMB EITHER,' SAID UMMON. ON HEARING THESE WORDS THE MONK AWOKE AS FROM A DEEP SLEEP.
What happened? What is Ummon pointing to? First, he is saying that if it is not a problem to you why be worried? There are people who come to me....
A very rich man came, one of the richest in India, and he said, 'What about poor people, how will you help poor people?' So I told him, 'If you are a poor person, then ask; otherwise let the poor ask. How is it a problem to you? You are not poor, so why create a problem out of it?'
Once Mulla Nasruddin's child asked him -- I was present, and the child was working very strenuously, grumbling of course, on his homework, and then suddenly he looked at Nasruddin and said, 'Gee Dad, what is this education stuff? Of what use is all this education stuff anyway?'
Nasruddin said, 'Well, there is nothing like education. It makes you capable of worrying about everybody else in the world except you.'
There is nothing like education. All your education simply makes you capable of worrying about situations everywhere in the world, about everyone except you -- about all the troubles that are in the world. They have always been there, they will always be there. It is not because you are here that troubles are there. You were not and they were there; you will not be soon and they will remain there. They change their colors but they remain. The very scheme of the universe is such that it seems that through trouble and misery something IS growing. It seems to be a step, it seems to be a necessary schooling, a discipline.
The first thing Ummon is pointing out is: You are neither blind, nor dumb, nor deaf, so why are you concerned and why are you troubled? YOU have eyes -- why waste time thinking about blind men? Why not look at your master? -- because blind men will be there always, your master will not be there always. And you can think and worry about blind and deaf people, how to save them, but the man who can save you will not be there for ever. So you be concerned about yourself.
My experience is also that people are concerned about others. Once one man brought to me even exactly the same question. He said, 'We can listen to you but what about those who can't come to listen, what to do? We can read you,' he said, 'but what about those who cannot read?'
They appear relevant, but they are absolutely irrelevant. Because why are YOU worried?
And if you are worried in such a way then you can never become enlightened, because a person who goes on wasting and dissipating his energy on others never looks at himself.
This is a trick of the mind to escape from oneself -- you go on thinking about others and you feel very good because you are worrying about others. You are a great social reformer or a revolutionary or a utopian, a great servant of the society -- but what are you doing? You are simply avoiding the basic question: it is with YOU that something has to be done.
Forget the whole society, and only then can something be done to you; and when you are saved you can start saving others. But before that, please don't think -- it is impossible.
Before you are healed, you cannot heal anyone. Before YOU are filled with light, you cannot help anyone to enkindle his own heart. Impossible -- only a lighted flame can help somebody. First become a lighted flame -- this is the first point.
And the second point is, Ummon created a situation. He could have said this but he is not saying it; he is creating a situation, because only in a situation are you totally involved. If I say something only intellect is involved. You listen from the head; but your legs, your heart, your kidneys, your liver, your totality is not involved. But when the monk got a staff thrust at him he jumped totally. Then it was total action; then not only the head and the legs, the kidneys, the liver, but the whole of him JUMPED.
That's the whole point of my meditation techniques: the whole of you has to shake, jump, the whole of you has to dance, the whole of you has to move. If you simply sit with closed eyes only the head is involved. You can go on and on inside the head -- and there are many people who go on sitting for years together, just with closed eyes, repeating a mantra. But a mantra moves in the head, your totality is not involved -- and your totality is involved in existence. Your head is only as much in God as your liver and kidneys and your feet. You are totally in him, and just the head cannot realize this.
Anything intensely active will be helpful. Inactive, you can simply go on rambling inside the mind. And they have no end, the dreams, the thoughts, they have no end. They go on infinitely.
Kabir has said: There are two infinities in the world -- one is ignorance and another is God. Two things are endless -- God is endless, and ignorance. You can go on repeating a mantra, but it will not help unless your whole life becomes a mantra, unless you are completely involved it it -- no holding back, no division. That's what Ummon did. The monk got a staff thrust at him.
HE LEAPT BACK.'WELL,' SAID UMMON, 'YOU'RE NOT BLIND. NOW APPROACH.'
THE MONK DID AS HE WAS BIDDEN. 'GOOD, YOU'RE NOT DEAF EITHER.'
What is he pointing at? He is pointing at this: 'You can understand, so why waste time?'
Then he asks, 'WELL, UNDERSTAND?' Ummon was finished. The situation was complete. But the disciple was not yet ready, had not yet got the point. He asked, 'UNDERSTAND WHAT SIR?' The whole thing was there now. Ummon had said whatsoever was to be said. And he had created a situation where thoughts were not: when somebody pushes a staff at you, you jump without thought. If you think you cannot jump, because by the time you have decided to jump the staff will have hit you. There is no time.
Mind needs time, thinking needs time. When somebody pushes a staff at you, or suddenly you find a snake on a path, you jump! You don't think about it, you don't make a logical syllogism, you don't say: Here is a snake; a snake is dangerous; death is possible; I must jump. You don't follow Aristotle there. You simply put aside all Aristotle -- YOU JUMP!
You don't care what Aristotle says, you are illogical. But whenever you are illogical you are total.
That's what Ummon has said. You jump totally. If you can jump totally, why not meditate totally? When a staff is thrust at you, you jump without caring about the world.
You don't ask, 'That's okay, but what about a blind man? If you push a staff, how will it help a blind man?' You don't ask a question -- you simply jump; you simply avoid. In that moment the whole world disappears, only you are the problem. And the problem is THERE -- you have to solve it and come out of it.
-- that's what Ummon asked. The point is complete.
'UNDERSTAND WHAT SIR?' SAID THE MONK.
He has still not got it.
'AH, YOU'RE NOT DUMB EITHER' -- you can speak also.
ON HEARING THESE WORDS THE MONK AWOKE AS FROM A DEEP SLEEP.
A whole situation -- nonverbal, illogical, total. As if someone has shaken him out of his sleep. He awoke; for a moment everything became clear. For a moment there was lightning, there was no darkness. Satori happened. Now the taste is there. Now this disciple can follow the taste. Now he has known, he cannot forget it ever. Now the search will be totally different. Before this it was a search for something unknown -- and how can you search for an unknown? And how can you put down your total life for it? But now it will be total, now it is not something unknown -- a glimpse has been given to him.
He has tasted the ocean, maybe out of a teacup but the taste is the same. Now he KNOWS. It was really a small experience -- a window opened, but the whole sky was there. Now he can move out of the house, come out under the sky and live in it. Now he knows that the question is individual.
Don't make it social. The question is YOU, and when I say you I mean YOU, each individual; not you as a group, not you as a society. When I mean you, I mean simply you, the individual -- and the trick of the mind is to make it social. The mind wants to worry about others -- then there is no problem. You can postpone your own problem; that's how you have been wasting your lives for many lives. Don't waste it any more.
I have been pushing these talks, subtler ones than with Ummon, but if you don't listen to me I may have to find grosser things.
Don't think about others. First solve YOUR problem, then you will have the clarity to help others also. And nobody can help unless he is enlightened himself.