Maneesha, there are things which are beyond understanding.
Enlightenment is beyond understanding, and of course beyond enlightenment is going to be more miraculous, more mysterious.
Understanding itself is not the heart of human beings, it is not their very being. It is useful only as far as the outside world is concerned. The moment you start moving inwards, you have to learn new ways of feeling, of loving, of knowing, and finally of being.
Understanding is perfectly right for the mind, for intelligence, for the objective world; but life does not consist only of those things which you can understand. In fact, the things that you can understand don't make life a celebration, they don't give life a meaning, a significance, they don't allow life to become love.
Understanding is the demarcation line between the mundane and the sacred.
The mundane can be understood and should be understood. And the sacred cannot be understood and should not be understood. Its sacredness is basically a secret that you experience, just the way you feel the heartbeat, the way you feel your breathing.
The sacred gives color to existence, gives music to that which is mundane. It transforms all prose into poetry and makes everything a mystery unto itself so that the whole existence becomes a constant challenge to discover. You go on discovering, but the discovery is never finished; hence you can never say you have understood. On the contrary, the deeper you enter into the sacred dimension of life the more you feel you don't understand, you don't know.
Socrates had become very old, and before he was given poison the oracle of the temple of Delphi declared him to be the wisest man in the whole world. A few people who knew Socrates were immensely glad, they rushed to Athens to inform Socrates: "It has never happened before, it is unprecedented that the oracle of Delphi should declare anybody as the wisest man in the world. You are the first."
Socrates said, "You will have to go back to the temple of Delphi and tell the oracle that although it has always been right, this time it has missed -- because I know nothing."
The people who brought the news were shocked.
They went back and told to the oracle: "Socrates refuses. Not only does he refuse to be the wisest man in the world, he says, `I know NOTHING.'" And here is the beauty of the incident: The oracle said, "That's why he is the wisest man in the world, there is no contradiction."
Maneesha, if you had understood what I was saying for twelve years about enlightenment, you would have missed. If you had understood what I have been saying for one month continuously about beyond enlightenment, you would have missed.
Because you are aware that you have not been able to understand anything, you have not missed.
And your feeling that sitting close to me you feel as if I have become your heartbeat, your breathing, your circulation of blood -- this is true understanding. This is not knowledge; this is the same understanding as when Socrates says, "I know nothing." This is closer to love, this is closer to music, this is closer to feeling beauty.
You don't understand beauty, you don't understand music, you don't understand dance -- you enjoy, you rejoice, you feel. It enters into your being. It becomes part of you, but you cannot say it is knowledge.
Listening to the music of the winds as they pass through the pine trees, what can you understand? Or listening to the sound of running water, what can you understand? Or looking at a beautiful sunset and all the colors spread over the horizon, what can you understand? What do you understand?
But something happens which is far more precious than understanding.
You fall in love, you feel it, you become it.
This is how it should be -- aes dhammo sanantano. This is how religion has always been, this is the eternal mystery I call `religion' -- not the religion of the mind, but the religion of the heart, of the being; not the religion of knowing, but the religion of innocence.
Whatever is happening to you is exactly what should happen to everybody.
Those who go from here understanding things, knowing things, becoming more knowledgeable, it would have been better that they had not come -- because I have not been a help to them, I have burdened them; I have not been able to unburden them. And my whole effort is to take all weight of knowing, knowledge, wisdom from you and to make you innocent children again -- again collecting flowers in the garden, running after butterflies, collecting seashells, making houses of sand on the beach... utterly absorbed in whatsoever you are doing, utterly blissful -- so the whole existence around you is a fairyland because everything is mysterious.
If I can take away your knowledge and give you back the sense of mystery, then I have done my job, I have fulfilled my function.
It is absolutely true: your emotions, your sentiments, your thoughts -- the whole paraphernalia of the mind -- is from the outside, is manipulated by the outside.
Scientifically it has become more clear. But even without scientific investigation, the mystics, for thousands of years, have been saying exactly the same thing -- that all these things that your mind is filled with are not yours, you are beyond them. You get identified with them, and that's the only sin.
For example, somebody insults you and you become angry. You think you are becoming angry -- but seen scientifically, his insult is only a remote controller. The man who has insulted you is managing your behavior. Your anger is in his hands, you are behaving like a puppet.
Now scientists are able to put electrodes in the brain at certain centers -- there are seven hundred centers. And it is almost unbelievable: the mystics have been talking about these seven hundred centers in the brain for almost seven, eight thousand years. Science has just now discovered that there are exactly seven hundred centers controlling all your behavior.
An electrode can be put at a particular center -- for example, anger -- with a remote control so you cannot see that anybody is doing anything to you. Nobody insults you, nobody humiliates you, nobody says anything to you; you are sitting silently, happily, and somebody pushes the button of the remote control and you become angry. It is a very strange feeling because you cannot see the reason anywhere, why you are becoming angry. Perhaps you will rationalize somehow: you see a man passing down the street and you remember that he insulted you -- you will find some rationalization just to console yourself that you are not going mad. Sitting silently... and suddenly feeling so angry without any provocation?
And the same remote controller can work to make you happy: sitting in your chair you start giggling, and you look all around in case somebody sees you -- he will think you are going crazy! Nobody has said anything, nothing has happened, nobody has slipped on a banana peel, so why are you giggling? But you will rationalize it, you will give some apparently rational grounds for giggling.
And the strangest thing is that when the next time the same button is pushed and you giggle, you will again have the same rationale, the same consolation, the same explanation -- that too is not yours. It is almost like a gramophone record.
And the scientists have come to discover a tremendously meaningful thing: the moment the remote controller releases the center, it rewinds itself immediately. For example, your speech center: the remote control can force you to speak. There is no audience, you will feel awkward -- but you cannot do anything, you have to speak. It is just like a recording.
When the remote controller releases the button, the pressure on the electrode, you become silent. Press the button again... and the strange thing is, you start your speech again from the very beginning!
When I was reading about the scientific investigations into these centers, I was reminded of my student days. I was a competitor in an inter-university debate; all the universities of the country were participating. The Sanskrit University of Varanasi was also participating, but naturally the students from the Sanskrit University were feeling a little inferior compared with competitors from other universities. They knew ancient scriptures, they knew Sanskrit poetry, drama, but they were not familiar with the contemporary world of art, literature, philosophy or logic.
And the inferiority complex works in very strange ways.
Just after I had spoken, the next person was the representative from the Sanskrit University. And just to impress the audience and to hide his inferiority complex he started his speech with a quotation from Bertrand Russell -- he had crammed it, and Sanskrit students are more capable of cramming things than anybody else. But his stage fright....
He knew nothing about Bertrand Russell, he knew nothing about what he was quoting. It would have been better to have quoted something from Sanskrit because he would have been more at ease.
In the middle he stopped -- just in the middle of a sentence. And I was sitting by his side, because I had just finished. There was silence, and he was perspiring. And just to help him, I said, "Start again" -- because what else to do? he was simply stuck. "And if you cannot go ahead, you start again; perhaps it may come back to you."
So he started again: "Brothers and sisters..." and at exactly the same point he got stuck again. Now it became a joke. The whole hall was shouting, "Again!" and he was in such a difficult situation. Neither could he go ahead nor could he keep standing there silent -- it looked very idiotic. So he had to start again. But he would start again, "Brothers and sisters..."
For a whole fifteen minutes we heard only that portion: "Brothers and sisters..." up to the point where he got stuck, again and again.
When his time was finished he came and sat next to me. He said, "You destroyed my whole thing!"
I said, "I was trying to help you."
He said, "This is help?"
I said, "You were going to be in difficulty anyway. This way at least everybody enjoyed it except you -- that I can understand, but you should rejoice that you made so many people happy. And why did you choose that quotation? When I was saying to you, `Start again' there was no need to start over -- you could have dropped that quotation, there was no need to begin again from the very beginning."
But I came to know through reading the scientific research that the speech center is exactly like a gramophone record, but with one thing very strange and special: the moment the needle is taken away from the record you cannot put the needle back where you took it from. Once it is taken away, it will have to begin again exactly at the beginning. The center instantly goes back to the beginning.
And if this happens, can you say you are the master of what you are saying? Are you the master of what you are feeling? Certainly there are no electrodes scientifically put into you, but biologically exactly the same work is going on.
You see a certain woman, and immediately your mind reacts: "How beautiful!" This is nothing but remote control. That woman functioned like a remote control and your speech center simply went into a recorded speech: "How beautiful!"
Mind is a mechanism. It is not you.
It records things from outside, and then reacts to outside situations according to the recordings. That's the only difference between a Hindu and a Mohammedan and a Christian and a Jew -- they have just got different gramophone records. Inside it is one humanity. And do you think when you play a gramophone record... it may be in Hebrew, it may be in Sanskrit, it may be in Persian, it may be in Arabic, but it is the same machine that plays the record. To the machine it does not matter whether it plays Hebrew or Sanskrit.
All your religions, all your political ideas, all your cultural attitudes are nothing but recordings. And in certain situations certain recordings are provoked.
There is a beautiful incident in the life of one of the very wisest kings of India, Raja Dhoj. He was very much interested in wise people. His whole treasury was open only for one purpose -- to collect all the wise people of the country, whatsoever the cost. His capital was Ujjain, and he had thirty of the country's most famous people in his court. It was the most precious court in the whole country.
One of the greatest poets of the world, Kalidas, was one of the members of the court of Raja Dhoj.
One day a man appeared at the court saying that he spoke thirty languages with the same fluency, the same accuracy and accent as any native person could, and he had come to make a challenge: "Hearing that you have in your court the wisest people of the country, here are one thousand gold pieces..."
The rupee used to be golden. We should stop calling it the rupee now, because the word `rupee' comes from the word rupya. `Rupya' means gold. It went on falling from gold to silver, from silver to something else. Now it is just paper and you go on calling it `rupee'.
The very word means gold.
And he said, "Anybody who can recognize my mother tongue, these one thousand gold pieces are his. And if he cannot recognize it, then he will have to give me one thousand gold pieces."
There were great scholars there, and everybody knows that whatever you do, you can never speak any language the way you can speak your own mother tongue because every other language has to be learned by effort. Only the mother tongue is spontaneous -- you don't even learn it, just... the very situation and you start speaking it. It has a spontaneity.
That's why even Germans who call their country `fatherland'.... That is the only country which calls itself `fatherland'. All other countries call their land `motherland'. But even the Germans don't call their language `father tongue'. Every language is called a mother tongue because the child starts learning from the mother, and anyway the father never has the chance to speak in the house. It is always the mother who is speaking -- father is listening.
Many took the challenge. He spoke in thirty languages -- a few pieces in one language, a few pieces in another language -- and it was really hard; he was certainly a master artist.
He was speaking each language the way only a native can speak his own mother language. All of the thirty great scholars lost. The competition continued for thirty days, and every day one person took the challenge and lost it. The man would say, "This is not my mother tongue."
On the thirty-first day.... King Dhoj had been continually saying to Kalidas, "Why don't you accept the challenge? -- because a poet knows language in a more delicate way, with all its nuances, more than anybody else."
But Kalidas remained silent. He had been watching for thirty days, trying to find out which language the man spoke with more ease, with more spontaneity, with more joy.
But he could not manage to find any difference, he spoke all the languages in exactly the same way.
On the thirty-first day, Kalidas asked King Dhoj and all the wise people to stand outside in front of the court. There was a long row of steps and the man was coming up; as he came up to the last step, Kalidas pushed him down. And as he fell rolling down the steps, anger came up -- he shouted.
And Kalidas said, "This is your mother tongue!" Because in anger you cannot remember, and the man had not been expecting this to be a challenge.
And that actually was his mother tongue.
Deepest in his mind, the recording was of the mother tongue.
One of my professors used to say -- he lived all over the world, teaching in different universities -- that "Only in two situations in life have I been in difficulty in different countries -- fighting or falling in love. In those times one remembers one's mother tongue. However beautifully you express your love, it is not the same, it seems superficial. And when you are angry and fighting in somebody else's language, you cannot have that joy...."
He said, "Those are two very significant situations -- fighting and loving -- and mostly they are together with the same person. With the same person you are in love, with that same person you have to fight."
And he was right, that everything remains superficial -- you can neither sing a beautiful song nor can you use real four-letter words of your language. In both cases, it remains lukewarm.
Mind certainly is a mechanism for recording experiences from the outside, and reacting and responding accordingly. It is not you.
But unfortunately the psychologists think mind is all, beyond mind there is nothing. That means you are nothing but impressions from the outside. You don't have any soul of your own. The very idea of the soul is also given by the outside.
This is where the mystics are different: they will agree absolutely that about the mind, the contemporary scientific research is right. But it is not right about man's total personality.
Beyond mind, there is an awareness which is not given by the outside and which is not an idea -- and there is no experiment up to now which has found any center in the brain which corresponds to awareness.
The whole work of religion, of meditation is to make you aware of all that is mind and disidentify yourself with it. When the mind is angry, you should think, "It is simply a gramophone record." When the mind is sad, you should simply remember: it is only a gramophone record.
A certain situation is pressing the remote controller, and you feel sad, you feel angry, you feel frustrated, you feel worried, you feel tense -- all these things are coming from the outside, and the mind is responding to them.
But you are the watcher.
You are not the actor. It is not your reaction.
Hence the whole art of meditation is to learn awareness, alertness, consciousness.
While you are feeling angry, don't repress it; let it be there. Just become aware. See it as if it is some object outside you.
Slowly slowly, go on cutting your identifications with the mind. Then you have found your real individuality, your being, your soul.
Finding this awareness is enlightenment -- you have become luminous.
You are no more in darkness, and you are no more just a puppet in the hands of the mind.
You are a master, not a servant. Now the mind cannot react automatically, autonomously -- the way it used to do before. It needs your permission.
Somebody insults you, and you don't want to be angry....
Gautam Buddha used to say to his disciples that, "To be angry is so stupid that it is inconceivable that intelligent human beings go on doing it. Somebody else is doing something and you are getting angry. He may be doing something wrong, he may be saying something wrong, he may be making some effort to humiliate you, to insult you -- but that is his freedom. If you react, you are a slave."
And if you say to the person, "It is your joy to insult me, it is my joy not to be angry," you are behaving like a master.
And unless this master becomes crystal clear in you, crystallized, you don't have any soul. You are just a phonograph record.
As you grow older, your recording goes on becoming more and more. You become more knowledgeable. People think you are becoming wiser -- you are simply becoming a donkey loaded with scriptures.
Wisdom consists only of one thing, not of knowing many things but of knowing only one thing: that is your awareness and its separation from the mind.
Just try watching in small things, and you will be surprised. People go on doing the same things every day. They go on deciding to do something, and they go on repenting because they have not done it; it becomes a routine.
Everything you do is not new. The things which have been giving you misery, sadness, worries, wounds, and you don't want -- somehow mechanically you go on doing these things again and again as if you are helpless. And you will remain helpless unless you create a separation between mind and awareness.
That very separation is the greatest revolution that can happen to man. And from that very moment your life is a life of continuous celebration -- because you need not do anything that harms you, you need not do anything that makes you miserable. Now you can do and act on only that which makes you more joyous, fulfills you, gives you contentment, makes your life a piece of art, a beauty.
But this is possible only if the master in you is awake. Right now the master is fast asleep, and the servant is playing the role of master.
And the servant is not your servant; the servant is created by the outside world, it belongs to the outside world, it follows the outside world and its laws.
This is the whole tragedy of human life: you are asleep, and the outside world is dominating you, creating your mind according to its own needs -- and the mind is a puppet.
Once your awareness becomes a flame, it burns up the whole slavery that the mind has created.
And there is no blissfulness more precious than freedom, than being a master of your own destiny.
Mind is not your friend. Either the mind is pretending to be the master or it has to be put into its right place as a servant -- but mind is not your friend.
And the struggle for freedom, for bliss, for truth is not with the world; it is a fight with this puppet mind. It is very simple.
Kahlil Gibran has a beautiful story.
The farmers in the villages, to protect their cultivated farms, create a false man: just a stick, another stick... it looks almost like a cross. And then they put a kurta on it, and a mud pot in place of the head. That's enough to make poor animals afraid that somebody may be standing there. The white kurta and two hands, in the night... somebody is watching. For the animals it is enough, they keep away from the farm.
Gibran says, "Once I asked such a false man, `I can understand the farmer who made you, he needs you. I can understand the poor animals, they don't have great intelligence to see that you are bogus. But in rain, in sun, in hot summer, in cold winter you remain standing here -- for what?'
"And the false, bogus man said, `You don't know myjoy. Just to make those animals afraid is such a joy that it is worth suffering rain, suffering sun, suffering heat, winter -- everything. I am making thousands of animals afraid! I know I am bogus, there is nothing inside me -- but I don't care about that. My joy is in making others afraid.'" I want to ask you: would you like to be just like this bogus man -- nothing inside, making somebody afraid, making somebody happy, making somebody humiliated, making somebody respectful?
Is your life only for others?
Will you ever look inside?
Is there anybody in the house or not?
The people who are with me, their search is to find the master of the house.
I say to you the master is there -- perhaps asleep, but he can be awakened. And once the master is awakened within you, your whole life takes new colors, new rainbows, new flowers, new music, new dances.
For the first time you become alive. Before, you were only vegetating.
Baraka is a Sufi word meaning grace.
George Gurdjieff was trained in Sufi schools. He has carried many ideas of the Sufis into the West.
The Sufi master -- just like any other master in the world -- is full of grace. If you are receptive, if you are open, just coming close to the master something invisible, some vibe of the divine, some rays of the unknowable start penetrating you.
It also has the meaning of blessing.
People come to the masters and ask for blessing.
In English there is no exact word to translate `baraka', but in Sanskrit, in Hindi, we have the word prasad. Blessings carry a faraway echo of it. If you are receptive... And unless one is receptive one never goes to a master.
That has been the Eastern tradition. Why waste your time and why waste the master's time? You go only when you see that your heart is opening, it needs a ray of light, as if your being is just like thirsty earth which needs a raincloud to shower on you. Only in such moments people go to a master, they touch the feet of the master, they sit with the master.
Nothing is said and everything is heard; nothing is asked and everything is given.
Baraka is a mystical principle that happens between the receiving disciple and the overflowing master.
It is possible to pass a master without even noticing him -- if you are not open.
Sufis are very careful. It is not easy to find a Sufi master; he may take months or sometimes years to find -- and perhaps the master is just living in front of your house.
The Sufis wait for the right moment.
They have their disciples who come to know that a certain man is asking if this village has a Sufi master. And the disciples go on telling him, "Yes, the Sufi master is here, and you will be called only when you are ready -- because the real thing is your openness.
The master is ready, but what will you be doing? Even if we take you to the master, you will not be able to recognize him."
So the disciples will keep the person hanging around, giving him hope, giving him time -- "Next month we will try" -- making him more and more thirsty. And when they see that he has become a longing, that now it is no longer an ordinary inquiry, it is not just a curiosity to see a Sufi master, but a deep longing, a question of life and death; that if this man does not get in contact with a master he may die, only then will he be introduced into the company of the master. And he will be surprised: the master is a man he has passed in the village many times, he sells vegetables -- because Sufis keep themselves hiding in very ordinary life. Somebody is a shoemaker, somebody is a weaver, somebody sells vegetables -- ordinary things, nothing special about it. And they meet in the middle of the night.
Then the same man sits with the dignity of an emperor. It is called `the court of the master'. The same man who was selling vegetables the whole day long in the marketplace -- now even the emperor comes to touch his feet.
But nobody can come to the Sufi master unless somebody from his company introduces him, unless somebody takes the responsibility that the person is ready, somebody brings him, introduces him: "He is ready. He needs your grace."
When Gurdjieff entered into a Sufi circle for the first time -- it took him three years to enter the circle.... When he entered, almost a dozen people were sitting there silently with their eyes closed. He was brought close to the master.
The friend who brought him told him, "Just sit down. Nothing is needed on your part except a silent opening, and the rain will come. And then don't close yourself. Drink of the master as much as you can -- this is his blessing; this will keep you on the path, on the right track. It will keep you courageous enough to pass all the dark nights, it will keep you trusting that the morning is going to happen. The face of the master, the eyes of the master, the gestures of the master, the silence of the master -- everything has to be soaked up so it becomes part of you."
When the master is no longer outside you only, but inside you too -- that is real blessing.
Then the disciple is pregnant, the master has come into his womb, and it will help him in times of danger, in times of discouragement, in times of darkness.
It will always keep him together, remembering that if truth can happen to one man, if God can happen to one man, then it is everybody's birthright.
Remembering..."It may take a little time for me, I have joined the path a little late. But the dawn is not far away."
The commune in America was only a beginning; a beginning of many communes around the world.
They will go on spreading -- because it is not only a question of orthodox religions and dirty politics, it is also a question of the future of humanity. And the future is always more important than the past.
The past is heavy and long. The future is light, unknown. But the past is dead, and life belongs to the future -- and death cannot win over life.
One commune can be destroyed. Thousands of other communes will arise.
Of course my way of functioning will be different because the experiment in Rajneeshpuram needed me to be there, it was the first commune.... Every step had to be taken carefully. And within five years, so much was done that is not possible to do even in fifty years. But now the basic rules are clear.
And my being in any commune is going to be dangerous for the commune.
It was absolutely necessary for the first commune that I should be present. I took the risk, and the commune has succeeded. Now there are communes all around the world. More communes will be arising. I am just waiting for the right moment to trigger a new kind of process.
I will not be part of any commune because my presence will be dangerous for the commune. So now I will be just wandering from one commune to another. Before my presence becomes dangerous in one commune, I will move to another -- so the commune is saved, and whatever I can give and my presence can give, can be given on a much bigger scale around the globe.
There is no need for people to come to me. I can move from commune to commune. This way, many more communes can flourish.
I am just waiting for the right moment. Preparations are being made, and soon I will start working on a series of communes -- because the movement has to become worldwide, it is already worldwide.
The commune is the lifestyle of the future.
The family is gone and the commune is going to take its place. Much depends on the success of commune life, and we have to make the commune life such a celebration that it starts spreading like wildfire, that others start communes of their own.
Each village can become a commune, there is no need to establish different villages. We just have to prove that life in a commune is much richer, much more lovely, much more meditative, that there is a possibility of living in a different way, different from the way humanity has lived up to now.
We have proved it in Rajneeshpuram.
It was our success that forced America to destroy the commune. If we were not successful, nobody would have bothered about us. Remember this: it was not a failure that we were destroyed; it was our success which could not be tolerated.
And if we have been successful in one place.... We are successful in Germany, in Italy, in Holland, in Japan, in Australia, in different other countries. Because I am not there, the politicians are not worried, the theologians are not afraid.
So I want the communes to become more consolidated before I start my world tours, because now it will not be A world tour, it will be just the beginning of world tours. I will be continuously rotating like a satellite around the earth, creating as much trouble as possible. Only then these traditional vested interests can be destroyed.
But if the truth is with us, the victory is also with us.
The ordinary human being stops his growth of intelligence at the age fourteen because the biological purpose is complete.
At the age of fourteen, the person is mature enough to give birth, to reproduce. Biology is no longer interested beyond this point.
This is the reason why the average human being is stuck at the age of fourteen as far as his mental age is concerned. People go on growing physically up to seventy, eighty, ninety, a hundred years -- in some places like Caucasia, up to one hundred and fifty, even one hundred and eighty. But their mental age remains stuck at fourteen. This has been the routine up to now.
This can be changed. And this should be changed because there is infinite potential for growth, but the change will come only if you have some goals beyond biology. If your life remains concerned only with sex, children, family, food, house, then there is no need; that much intelligence is enough. But if your interest is that of an Albert Einstein then your intelligence starts moving sometimes even ahead of your physical body.
Emerson is reported to have said -- and rightly so -- when asked how old he was: "Three hundred and sixty years."
The journalist who was asking said, "Three hundred and sixty? You don't look more than sixty."
Emerson said, "That's right. From one point of view, I am sixty years old. But I have done so much work as far as my intelligence is concerned that either six people would be needed to do it or I would need three hundred and sixty years. My intelligence is so far ahead of my physical body."
Intelligence depends what you are doing with it.
The person who is meditating has the greatest possibility of reaching the highest peaks of intelligence because in meditation he is doing the greatest possible work that a man is capable of -- and that is realizing oneself, knowing "Who am I." Entering into the deepest interiority of one's subjectivity is the greatest work for intelligence. Then you cannot even count -- you cannot count Gautam Buddha's intelligence, it is beyond calculations, beyond measurements.
And if you are a meditator, as your meditation goes on becoming more and more luminous, your intelligence will be growing to the last breath of your life. Not only that, even after the last breath your intelligence will continue to grow -- because you are not going to die, only your body will be dying. And the body has nothing to do with intelligence, mind has nothing to do with intelligence.
Intelligence is the quality of your awareness -- more aware, more intelligent.
And if you are totally aware, you are as intelligent as this whole existence is.