As I Have Loved You
DISCIPLES' FEET, AND TO WIPE THEM WITH THE TOWEL WHEREWITH HE WAS GIRDED.
LORD, DOST THOU WASH MY FEET?
NOT NOW, BUT THOU SHALT KNOW HEREAFTER.
ANSWERED HIM: IF I WASH THEE NOT, THOU HAST NO PART WITH ME.
GARMENTS, AND WAS SET DOWN AGAIN, HE SAID UNTO THEM: KNOW YE WHAT I HAVE DONE TO YOU?
ALSO OUGHT TO WASH ONE ANOTHER'S FEET.
HAVE DONE TO YOU.
TESTIFIED, AND SAID: VERILY VERILY, I SAY UNTO YOU, THAT ONE OF YOU SHALL BETRAY ME.
THIS UNTO HIM.
SON OF MAN GLORIFIED, AND GOD IS GLORIFIED IN HIM.
ANOTHER; AS I HAVE LOVED YOU, THAT YE ALSO LOVE ONE ANOTHER.
HAVE LOVE ONE TO ANOTHER.
THE essence of religion is paradoxical - opposites meet there and lose their oppositeness. Contraries become complementary there and lose their contrariness. Day and night are not separate there, neither are life and death, nor the lower and the higher. The earth is the sky there, and the sky is the earth. To the logical mind, to mind as such - because all minds are logical - it is very difficult to conceive.
I will read a few words from A.N. Whitehead, a very perceptive man:'Religion is the vision of something which extends beyond, behind, and within the passing flux of immediate things: something which is real and yet waiting to be realized; something which is a remote possibility and yet the greatest of present facts; something which gives meaning to all that passes and yet eludes apprehension; something whose possession is the final good and yet is beyond reach; something which is the ultimate ideal and the hopeless quest.'
Whitehead understands rightly the paradoxicalness of religion, but he is trying to see it through the mind, hence his final conclusion is that it is a 'hopeless quest - hopeless because how can the opposites meet? Jean-Paul Sartre says that God is impossible because to make God possible, opposites will have to disappear.
Death and life should become one; only then can God exist. And how can the mind conceive of life and death becoming one, winter and summer becoming one, the beginning and end becoming one? For the mind, the quest becomes hopeless.
The modern mind is basically without religion because the modern mind has lost the capacity, the elasticity, to be illogical. In the ordinary world, to be illogical is to be mad; in religion, to be illogical is the method. Madness itself is the method to know God. Unless you are mad enough so that you can put aside the categories of the mind and you can look directly without bringing any concepts between you and the reality, you can, at the most, know the matter, the dead part, the past, but you cannot know the real, the alive, the God. Essential religion will always look elusive to the mind. In fact, it looks like a sort of craziness.
Just a few days ago I was reading R.C. Zaehner's books. This man has tried to understand Zen, Krishnamurti, but he could not; and in the end he has written a small; poem to ridicule them. That small poem not only ridicules Krishnamurti and Zen, it ridicules Jesus, Krishna - it ridicules all religion. R.C. Zaehner writes in this poem, and he feels that he is giving you the very essence of this insanity called Zen:
Tee-hee hee, you and me, me is you, you is me.
Life is death, dead is life, I am my husband, you are your wife.
We aren't God-children, they aren't God-us, we are all that happy, so why this fuss?
Fuss, fuss, fuss, cuss, cuss, cuss.
Yes - that's us.
He thinks that he is ridiculing, and he is being ridiculous himself; but this is natural to the mind.
Jesus goes on saying,'I and my Father are one.' That means that the son is the Father. The VICE-VERSA has never been said, but should be said. Only then will the truth become clear; that the Father is also the son. If the son is the Father, then the Father is also the son, but then things become elusive.
On this last night with his disciples, he brings this meeting of opposites, this meeting of the distant and the near, to a peak point, to a climax. By touching the feet of his disciples, he is saying that the disciple is the Master, the Master is the disciple. This is a Zen act. Without saying anything, he is saying the very essence of all religions. He is saying,'I and thou are not two.' He is saying,'Thou is me, me is thou' - he is making the circle complete. The Master touching the feet of the disciples is a rare phenomenon. Through this symbolic act, Jesus is taking his departure from his disciples, showing them the very essence of religion: where the Master touches the feet of the disciple, where the son becomes the Father and the Father becomes the son, where the night becomes the day and the day becomes the night, and opposites merge, disappear.
This is difficult for R.C. Zaehner to understand. In his book he calls Aristotle many times,'Our father, Aristotle.' It must be so; Aristotle must be his father, not God. Aristotle is the logical mind. The very essence of the logical mind is that day and night are separate and can never meet. East and West are separate - 'East is East, West is West, and the twain shall never meet.' But I tell you, they are meeting here, they are meeting everywhere. Wherever life exists, East and West are meeting; wherever life exists, men and women are meeting; wherever life exists, the Master and the disciple are meeting; wherever life exists, the soul and matter are meeting - in you, everywhere: in a flower, in a tree, in a rock, in a man - the soul and matter are meeting. And still you go on dividing. Can you demark exactly where your body ends and your spirit begins, where your spirit ends and your body begins? They are ONE: the body is touching the feet of the spirit and the spirit is touching the feet of the body. It is a circle.
Jesus says many things without saying them. He shows rather than says; he is a simple man. Zen people can understand what he did, Christians cannot understand. They go on saying,'Our Father who is in heaven...' but that is wrong.'Our father, Aristotle', they should say. Aristotle is their father: the mind that divides, the mind that makes clear-cut distinctions, the mind that categorizes, puts things into pigeon-holes. A very neat and clean job Aristotle has made of life. He has classified; he is the greatest classifier. But whenever you divide, something which cannot be divided disappears. You can dissect a flower and you can come to know of what it is constituted - the matter part - but the spirit part will disappear. You will never come to catch hold of beauty. In dissection, the beauty will disappear. You can dissect a man on an operating- theatre table, you can dissect minutely, you can take tremendous care in dissection and analysis, but only body will be left in your hands. The soul will disappear, because in fact the soul exists in a very deep synthesis where opposites meet.
Life is a dialectical process where opposites go on meeting and go on creating a higher synthesis, a symphony, a harmony. And every moment it is happening - the day becomes night every evening, and every morning the night again becomes the day. But you are blind and you cannot see it. Everywhere you can see opposites meeting: the earth is reaching to the sky in the trees and touching it, and the sky is every moment boring into the earth, penetrating it. That love affair continues between the earth and the sky; they are always meeting in deep embrace, infinitely one. The separation is only on the surface.
Now the sutras:
AND SUPPER BEING ENDED...
It is the last supper with Jesus, and only Jesus knows it is the last. The disciples are absolutely ignorant. They cannot even feel what is going to happen, they cannot hear the footsteps of the future. Jesus is already going towards his crucifixion, Jesus is already ready, moving. The moment, the momentous moment is arriving - every moment closer and closer - but they are, in a way, blissfully unaware. Remember, that's what is happening to everybody. Death is coming closer and closer, and you are blissfully unaware. You go on making arrangements to live as if you were going to live forever. Your mind goes on planning for the future, not knowing that death is coming. Death is hiding in every bush; death can jump from anywhere.
On that night of celebration, the last supper with the Master, who could have thought that this would be the last? Who could have thought that the next day Jesus would be gone? This unique man would be no more. There would no longer be this unique opportunity to touch God on earth. There would no longer be any possibility to look through his door, to have a glimpse of the divine from his window. Eating, drinking, they were happy. That's how life goes on: eating, drinking; and every moment death comes closer and closer, and you go on preparing to live as if you were going to live forever.
The man who becomes aware of death becomes a totally different man. Then he is not always wasting his time in preparing for the future. Rather, he starts living in the present. Alas, the disciples didn't know. Later on they would repent, and they would cry and weep their hearts out. They would think again and again, and they would move again and again into the nostalgia of the past: Jesus was so close and they went on missing him.
AND SUPPER BEING ENDED,... HE POURETH WATER INTO A BASIN, AND BEGAN TO WASH THE DISCIPLES' FEET, AND TO WIPE THEM WITH THE TOWEL WHEREWITH HE WAS GIRDED.
I call this 'the Zen act'. What is a Zen act? - a Zen act is an act in which you say that which cannot be said in any other way. There are things which can be said, there are things which cannot be said, and there are things which can only be acted upon. Through action, total action, they can be said; there is no other way to say them. In Zen, the Master always gives a certain problem for the disciple to find out the answer to. They call it 'koan'. The disciple goes on finding out answers, and comes again and again, every morning, to see the Master and to give his answer. But the Master goes on saying,'No, this is not the answer.'
Sometimes it happens that even before the disciple has said anything the Master says,'No, this is not the answer.' Sometimes this too happens: the disciple is coming, he is just outside the door and the Master shouts from inside,'No, this is not the answer.' Only later on, when the disciple becomes enlightened, does he understand what was the matter - the Master had given a problem which could not be answered verbally. You can ACT upon it. Only action can answer it, nothing else, because only action can be total.
Have you ever watched a small child in anger? That is total action; it is not only in the head. Every fibre of his body vibrates with anger - ready to explode, red in the face, as if capable of destroying the whole world - so tiny but so full of atomic energy. Watch a child in anger and you will see what total action is. Or, watch a lover who is in deep love: the mind stops. Even holding the hand of his beloved he is saying something which cannot be said. The very touch shows something, shows something which is beyond words, and the act is total. In anger, in love, in sadness, in bliss, sometimes it happens that the action is total. In dancing, when the dancer disappears and only the dance remains, then the action is total. And a total action is beautiful because a total action is no longer from you. THE MOMENT you are total, God is flowing through you.
On that day, the last day of Jesus with his disciples, Jesus did a Zen act - he washed his disciples' feet, he touched his disciples' feet with deep reverence. The disciples touch the feet of the Master, but their reverence can never be total. For the majority it is just a mannerism that has to be done. It is a sort of duty; they do it unconsciously. Something that has to be done, has to be done, but they are not in it. When they bow down, nothing hows down within them, just the body. It is a dead gesture. For a few others it may not be so dead. Maybe a little life flickers in it, but it is not a flame of totality. The disciples must have touched the feet of the Master many times, thousands of times. This time, the Master was going to touch the feet of the disciples to show them what reverence is, in its totality. That moment, there was nobody who was bowing down and washing. There was bowing, there was washing, but there was nobody - because whenever you are total the ego disappears. The ego exists only when you are partial. If you have experienced it in some way, sometime... and I see that everybody has experienced it sometime, somewhere. Because it doesn't fit with your style of life you have forgotten; because it does not fit with your own pattern you do not pay much attention to it; because it doesn't fit, you by and by forget it, throw it into the unconscious, into the basement of the mind. Otherwise, it has happened to everybody, unknowingly, unawares. Sometimes, just swimming, and suddenly you are filled with an unknown bliss. It happens only if the swimming becomes total. When the swimmer disappears, then the cause of all misery disappears, and then suddenly, God is there.
Whenever you are total, God is there. Whenever you are divided, God is unavailable. So let me say this: your totality is God. God is not a person, it is an experience. It is not waiting somewhere; you have to create it within you. God is not like an object, like a rock that some day you find and bring home, no. God is an inner harmony - you have to create it to find it. It is not a search for a dead object. It is creativity, it is tremendous creativity; and there is no higher creativity than that. A painter paints a picture, a singer sings a song, a sculptor makes an image; a religious seeker creates God! And there is only one way to create God:
to become total so that the act becomes whole.
Jesus showed them; that was his farewell. He could not have given a greater gift to them. He showed them what reverence is, what love is, how one can totally surrender. They thought that they had surrendered, but a disciple's surrender is a disciple's surrender. A disciple is divided, he is a crowd; only a part of him surrenders. That part may not even be the majority, and the many other parts go on resisting. He surrenders in a reluctant way. A part goes on pulling away from the Master, withdrawing, another part goes on saying 'no'. One part says 'yes', one part says 'no'. The disciple is always 'yes plus no'. When Jesus touched their feet, there was only 'yes'. He gave them the greatest gift he could, the gift of reverence.
I have heard that once a question was asked of Rabbi Joshua ben Karha:'Why did the Holy One, blessed be He, choose to speak to Moses at Mount Horeb out of a thorn bush?' It is relevant, why God chose to speak to Moses from a thorn bush.
Could He not find a better place? - a thorn bush? At least He could have found a rose bush. Why choose a thorn bush in the first place? It has been asked for centuries, but never has anyone given such a beautiful answer as Rabbi Joshua gave. Rabbi Joshua answered so as to teach us that there is no place on this earth free from the presence of God. God is everywhere, even in the lowly, even in a thorn bush. The whole earth is holy.
Why did Jesus touch their feet? He could have touched their heads, so why their feet? Feet are symbols of the lowly. In your body, they are the lowest part. Jesus touched their feet to show that God is there also; even in a thorn bush, in the lowliest, in the LOWEST depth God is there, because God is everywhere. In the darkest valley He is there. He is not only at the peaks, remember; in the valleys also, He is there. He is not only in the saints; in the sinners also, He is. When you pay respects, don't be bothered about whom to pay it to, because He is everywhere. You can touch the feet of a sinner and you have touched His feet, because there are no other feet. All feet, ALL feet are His. Jesus touched the feet of the disciples to show them that nothing is lowly. Everything is high, everything is superbly magnificent and everything is divine. Wherever you tread, you tread on God. Whatsoever you do, you do to God. Whomsoever you pay respect to or become angry with, you are doing it to God.
... HE POURETH WATER INTO A BASIN, AND BEGAN TO WASH THE DISCIPLES' FEET...
The feet are symbolic of the earth, they touch the earth; the head is symbolic of the sky, it touches the sky. The head and the feet - the highest and the lowest, the above and the below - are the same, because only one flows. You are in your feet as much as you are in your head. Don't forget the earth, you are rooted there; remember it. Jesus touched their feet, washed those feet.
THEN COMETH HE TO SIMON PETER, AND PETER SAITH UNTO HIM:
LORD, DOST THOU WASH MY FEET?
It doesn't look appropriate.'Dost thou wash MY feet? It is okay if I wash yours; you are our Lord, our Master.' A question arises in the mind of the disciple Simon Peter: one who loves, one who has a little more faith than the others. Even to him a question arises, just a question,'Is it appropriate that the Master should touch my feet?' A few didn't say anything. They may not even have grasped the meaning of it, it was so sudden. They may even have missed. They may not have been present there; they may not have been able to understand what was happening. Only Simon Peter, the man who was going to become the rock of Jesus' church, raised a question:'Dost thou wash my feet?' He had loved Jesus, he had respected him, but his faith was not yet total.'Man of little faith' Jesus had called him. He had faith, but very little. If the faith had been total, then there would have been no longer any distinction between the Master and the disciple.
In Zen there are stories that sometimes the disciple would hit the Master, and the Master would laugh. They are stories of great love, they are stories of great faith and trust. They show that now the distinction is no more there; now nobody knows who is who. The Master is the absence of the ego, and when the disciple's ego also disappears, there cannot be two absences.
For example: in your room there are two chairs; two chairs are present, two presences. You remove two chairs - now can you say that there are two absences because two chairs have been removed? No, there is only one absence; simply absence. You can remove a thousand chairs but the absence will not be of a thousand chairs; it will simply be absence. A Master is an absence, an emptiness; there is no ego in it. It is on the part of the disciple that they appear as two. From the side of the Master, because he is not there, there cannot be the other. When the'I' disappears,'thou' also disappears.
Peter loved him, respected him, but his love was not yet total. He was still present there; the disciple had not disappeared. The disciple asked,'Why? - you, and touching my feet?' It didn't look appropriate. Remember, in love there is nothing appropriate or not appropriate. In love, all distinctions disappear.
Just the other day somebody asked,'Can an enlightened man love an unenlightened man?' He asked a very pertinent question. He said that it is said of Ramakrishna's life that he would cry and weep for Vivekananda. Sometimes Vivekananda would not come to see him for a few days, so he would go to see him. He would find out where he was.'Is it possible,' the questioner had asked,'that a man like Ramakrishna, in love, in such love that he cried and wept if Vivekananda did not come, went to where he was to search for him, and became very happy when Vivekananda came?'
The questioner had asked,'Osho, do you weep for somebody?' I have so many Vivekanandas that if I start weeping, then there will be no time left. Hence, the difficulty. I cannot cry and weep, but I cry and weep for you because to me you are just potentialities of tremendous possibilities, seeds. Yes, Ramakrishna was deeply in love. And I tell you, only a Ramakrishna can be in deep love, ONLY a Ramakrishna. The unenlightened person can pretend that he loves, can deceive himself and others that he loves, but he cannot love. Love is the quality of enlightenment. It is the light that comes out of that inner lamp, that inner lamp of enlightenment. When that flame is burning inside, then the light flows outside.
Wherever it falls, it is love.
Jesus loved these disciples. To say that Jesus loved or that Ramakrishna loved is really not a right way of saying it, because Jesus is not, a Ramakrishna is not - there is only love. When Jesus touched the feet of his disciples, love touched their feet. Not Jesus, remember, but love touched their feet. Ramakrishna went to seek and search where Vivekananda was, but Ramakrishna didn't go anywhere. He was no more - where could he go? how could he go? who would go? - love went in search. When Ramakrishna cried and tears fell down, it was love crying.
Even Vivekananda felt embarrassed when Ramakrishna would stand and start dancing when he came, or he would hug him. Even he used to feel embarrassed.
Somehow it looked a little outlandish, eccentric. And this old man seemed to be crazy. If psychoanalysts had been present there, they may have suspected homosexuality, because psychoanalysis tries to explain the flower through the fertilizer. Then, even the flower starts stinking; it smells of the fertilizer. But if you ask me such questions, I explain the fertilizer through the flower. Then, even the fertilizer has a fragrance in it. Jesus touched the feet, not of the fertilizer but of the flower, of the possibility.
Ramakrishna went in search. To ordinary people Vivekananda was just ordinary, but not for Ramakrishna. Something extraordinary was waiting there: it needed help, care; it needed attention, it needed love to explode into being.
Jesus touched those disciples' feet in deep reverence, in great hope. He touched their feet to show them,'You are not that which you think you are. You are that which you are seeking; you are my God.' Those were only seeds, but Jesus could see the flowering. He touched their feet because of the possibility of the flowering - someday or other they would explode into beautiful flowers, they would blossom. He loved them, respected them for that. For him it was already a present phenomenon. They didn't know, they were unaware, they were fast asleep. The seed is nothing but a flower, fast asleep and snoring. And what is a flower? - a seed that has discovered itself, a seed that has come to know itself, a seed that has become itself - that's what a flower is. Even a weed is not a weed; a weed is one who is on the path to discover itself. Even a weed has tremendous possibilities. You may not know that even wheat was once thought to be a weed; even wheat! Humanity discovered, by and by, that it was nourishment. Now you cannot think of wheat as a weed. And if you find some weeds in the garden, always be respectful - who knows? They are on the way; some day their capacities and possibilities will be discovered.
They were ordinary weeds, those disciples, very ordinary human beings, but not to Jesus. Jesus could look into their future. Their future was present to Jesus, and he touched the feet of that future. Even a man like Peter could not believe, could not see the appropriateness of it. But in love, there is nothing appropriate and not appropriate. In love, everything takes a totally different flavour. Then, everything is holy.
THEN COMETH HE TO SIMON PETER: AND PETER SAITH UNTO HIM:
LORD, DOST THOU WASH MY FEET? JESUS ANSWERED AND SAID UNTO HIM: WHAT I DO THOU KNOWEST NOT NOW, BUT THOU SHALT KNOW HEREAFTER.
Maybe it would take many lives to know what Jesus did that day, but only hereafter would he be able to know, because to know it now, you would have to be present in your totality, here and now. But then, there would have been a totally different thing. Then Peter would not have felt a little uneasy about it. He may have laughed, he may even have blessed Jesus. That's what Mahakashyap would have done if Buddha had touched his feet - he would have laughed, smiled and blessed him. That small joke of Mahakashyap touching Buddha's head and blessing him would have reverberated all through history. In fact, that is what he did when he laughed. That smile was a blessing showered from the side of the disciple; but that is possible only when the disciple is not. Everything is possible only when you are not, but Peter was there. He was a man of little faith.
WHAT I DO THOU KNOWEST NOT NOW, BUT THOU SHALT KNOW HEREAFTER.
Peter trusted, then he didn't say anything. When Jesus says,'You will know,' he believes that he will know.
PETER SAITH UNTO HIM: THOU SHALT NEVER WASH MY FEET! JESUS ANSWERED HIM: IF I WASH THEE NOT, THOU HAST NO PART WITH ME.
The part that believes in Jesus is not the only part in Peter; many other parts also exist. That part which loves Jesus and has trust is not asking now. The first question was from the part that had faith; it was simply a question. How do I make the distinction? You just try to listen to me.
First, Peter said to him,'Lord, dost thou wash my feet?' - it was a simple question; there was no 'no' in it.'Yes' had not been said, but 'no' had also not been said. It was simply an enquiry:'Dost thou wash my feet?' It didn't look appropriate. When Jesus said,'What I am thou knowest not; but thou shalt know hereafter,' that part which believed and trusted became silent.
Then, the second question from Peter was not from the same Peter. Then he said,'Thou shalt never wash my feet!' Now it is a positive assertion, now it is a positive 'no'. It is no more hesitant; it is no more an enquiry, it is a statement.
This is some other part in Peter which says,'Thou shalt never wash my feet!' Jesus answered him,'If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me - so you decide. If I don't wash your feet and if you don't allow me, then you have nothing to do with me; you are not a part of me.'
Why? Something very deep has to be understood, and that is: whatsoever you call opposites in life are not as opposite as they appear. You love a person, and you hate him also. When you hate a person you continue to love him, you remain divided. A man who loves riches one day becomes fed-up and then he renounces, then he escapes to the mountains. Then if you bring riches to him, he will not look at them. He is not indifferent; he has moved from 'yes' to 'no'. Now he has moved to the other extreme, but he remains the same man. Once he was infatuated, now he has renounced, rejected, but still he has a relationship with the riches. The relationship exists.
For example: a disciple does not allow the Master to touch his feet. Why? - because of the ego. It will look very, very difficult to understand, because you will say that ego should feel perfectly happy that the Master is touching the feet.
Yes, there are people who have that type of ego also; we will come across them.
But this too is ego, when Peter says,'No, I will not allow you to touch my feet.
How can I allow you? I am your greatest disciple! How can I allow you to touch my feet?' - the ego:'I am a humble person, the humblest; how can I allow you to touch my feet?' Deep down, Peter is afraid that if Jesus touches his feet, deep down somewhere some part of his being will feel very exhilarated and happy.
That is the fear. He cannot be indifferent to it. Just see: if you cannot even allow your Master to touch your feet, what else are you going to allow? Peter will say,'I am ready to die for you. You can kill me if you want, but I won't allow you to touch my feet.'
But the basic thing is in saying 'no' to the Master. You can feel ready to die because in dying you will feel very ego-fulfilled - 'I am becoming a martyr.' The mind is so cunning, but still the same ego, the same mind is there.
I was just reading a few days ago: Once it happened that a Roman Catholic priest and a Church of England clergyman were arguing about religion, as priests and clergymen have always argued. They have not done anything else; argument is their life! So the Catholic priest and the Church of England clergyman were arguing about religion, and they both became rather heated. Then the priest, the Catholic priest said,'We must not quarrel. We are both doing God's work - you in your way and I in His.' Ego is VERY subtle.
There is a sentence of St. Paul's; listen to it very carefully, it is very dangerous:'If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him drink, for by so doing you will heap burning coals upon his head.'
Mind is so cunning. The first part is from Jesus, but the second part? This sentence is from St. Paul, this second part is from him. Jesus says,'Forgive your enemies, love your enemies,' but St. Paul is saying that this is a device, a strategy:'If you do this you are heaping burning coals upon his head. Do it! You are destroying the enemy this way. He will be in hell and you will be in heaven because you have forgiven him. When he was hungry you fed him, and when he was thirsty you gave him to drink. Now you are pushing him towards hell. You are becoming holier and holier, and the distance is becoming greater and greater, and you can look towards him as if he were a worm.'
Look at the tricks of the mind! Even if you do good, your reasons may not be good. You may serve, and your reasons may not be good. It looks perfectly right from the side of the disciple that he say,'I shall not allow you to touch my feet.'
He thinks that this is how it should be - Why and how can I allow my Master to touch my feet? He is so great.' But you are denying your Master; you are saying 'no'.
A disciple is a total 'yes'. He should be. He says,'Whatsoever is right, you know better. You know better; if it is right, then do it, and I will be ready to participate in whatsoever you want me to participate in. Wherever you lead me, I will come with you, because I am no more. I am surrendered.'
He said,'Thou shalt never wash my feet.' Jesus answered him,'If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me - then forget all about your discipleship, forget all about your love towards me. Then you are no more with me.' Jesus can understand the ego, the ego of the righteous man, the ego of the puritan, the ego of the holy man, the ego of the saint. But the ego, whether it is of a saint or a sinner makes no difference; it is the same ego.
I came across a sentence of Richard Nixon's:'Violence has no place in America.
Anyone who preaches violence should be shot like a dog!'
Beware of the cunningness of the mind. This has been done on the earth millions of times: people have killed each other for love, people have destroyed countries because they wanted to help those countries to become religious. For their own sakes, they have killed thousands. Remember, the real cause deep down has to be looked at and searched out. Sometimes you are humble, but the reason is the ego; sometimes you are simple only because you are very complex; sometimes you renounce the world because you are too infatuated with it; sometimes you donate money because you are greedy, and sometimes you look very brave because deep down is the coward. Watch! Man can go on deceiving himself and others by posing and pretending to be something else which he is not. That's why Jesus is so hard. He says,'If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me.'
SO AFTER HE HAD WASHED THEIR FEET, AND HAD TAKEN HIS GARMENTS, AND WAS SET DOWN AGAIN, HE SAID UNTO THEM: KNOW YE WHAT I HAVE DONE TO YOU?
Jesus touched their feet; it is a communication of energy, it is a deep communion of energy. He asked,'Know ye what I have done to you?' - and they were not aware. Even if God comes and touches your feet you may not be aware, because it does not depend on God, it depends on your sensitivity. The more deeply sensitive you are, the more you become aware of what is happening. If your sensitivity is so deep that it touches the very core of your being, only then will God's touch be felt. Then it will be a tremendous pouring of energy. When Jesus touched their feet, had they been aware, they would have felt exactly what Hindus call the rising of the kundalini. If they had been aware, they would have seen a tremendous rise, a tide of energy; Jesus was over-flooding them. There are two ways to do it: the Master touches your head and he pulls up your energy - it is a little difficult. When he touches your feet then he forces it up, which is easier.
Jesus had been touching their heads all the years that they had been with him.
Now he touched their feet. From another side, he wanted to give them a push before he left. He wanted to let them become aware of their own energy before he left, because he would be gone and they would be left in darkness; their own flame was not lit. He tried to force the energy up from below, and asked,'Know ye what I have done to you?' but they knew not. They simply thought. A few who had a certain love for him must have felt awkward, and in that awkwardness they missed the opportunity. Someone who was just indifferent, who neither loved nor hated, would have watched the whole thing like a bystander, a spectator, not involved in it. One who did not love him, but hated him - Judas - must have felt very good that now the right thing was being done.
Judas was the only educated, sophisticated disciple of Jesus, and he betrayed. It is a symbolic thing that intellect was the renegade; intellect was going to betray.
He was the intellect of that group of disciples. He was the most scholarly, sophisticated, educated, the most articulate in logic, in thinking. But when you become too clever, your very cleverness becomes like a smokescreen. One great German philosopher, Hegel, has said that God is cunning. When you are cunning, eVen God looks cunning - because you can only see yourself reflected.
KNOW YE WHAT I HAVE DONE TO YOU? YE CALL ME MASTER AND LORD, AND YE SAY WELL; FOR SO I AM. IF I THEN, YOUR LORD AND MASTER, HAVE WASHED YOUR FEET, YE ALSO OUGHT TO WASH ONE ANOTHER'S FEET. FOU I HAVE GIVEN YOU AN EXAMPLE, THAT YE SHOULD DO AS I HAVE DONE TO YOU.
This is that which can be said, that which can be understood. Only Jesus is not trying to explain. THAT cannot be explained. The energy push that he gave, the arousal of energy - that cannot be said. That was felt by a few, that may have been missed by others. Now he is saying that which can be said.
YE CALL ME MASTER AND LORD, AND YE SAY WELL; FOR SO I AM. IF I THEN, YOUR LORD AND MASTER, HAVE WASHED YOUR FEET, YE ALSO OUGHT TO WASH ONE ANOTHER'S FEET. FOR I HAVE GIVEN YOU AN EXAMPLE, THAT YE SHOULD DO AS I HAVE DONE TO YOU.
He is telling them to be respectful to each other, and that is very difficult for disciples. They are competitive. And a Master knows that the moment he disappears, the religion will be forgotten and politics will enter because disciples are politicians. In the presence of the Master they may forget their politics, but once the Master is gone they will forget about the Master, sooner or later. They will start fighting about who the leader is, who the greatest disciple is, who the successor is.
This ugliness happens to everybody's, to every Master's disciples. It happened to Mahavir's disciples, it happened to Buddha's disciples, but it didn't happen immediately to Jesus' disciples. The reason is that Jesus touched their feet. It happened later on because the disciples didn't follow; the example was forgotten.
When Jesus touched their feet he was saying,'You go on touching each other's feet - be respectful and go on doing this to your own disciples also. Sooner or later you will become Masters and you will have disciples - touch their feet. Let it become a tradition; not a dead one, but let it remain an alive current of reverence.' The disciples didn't fight amongst themselves because Jesus touched their feet. But later on, mind gathers dust and forgets. Then Christianity became divided.
Now Christianity has a thousand and one divisions, all sorts of divisions for small and foolish things which don't mean anything. There are small things for which they go on fighting and creating new churches and new denominations, and if you look deeply, nothing seems to be so important. Their distinctions are just foolish. Their arguments are about very futile things. In the Middle Ages, the Christian theo-logicians were in a great argument, and the argument was: how many angels can stand on a pin-point? How many? - things like this.
You can find arguments, and then you can go on arguing. The whole thing seems to be that the ego is always in search of fight, because if you fight, only then does it exist. If you love, if you respect, it cannot exist. Jesus said to them through his example,'Don't be related to each other through the ego; be related through love, respect, humility, because soon I will be gone and then there will be no one who can help you to come out of your egos. Then you will be left to yourselves. Then you will have to continue something which can help you not to fall a victim of the ego. Go on touching each other's feet, and do the same to your own disciples.'
WHEN JESUS HAD THUS SAID, HE WAS TROUBLED IN SPIRIT, AND TESTIFED, AND SAID: VERILY, VERILY, I SAY UNTO YOU, THAT ONE OF YOU SHALL BETRAY ME.
For the first time he came to know exactly who was going to betray him. By touching the feet he felt the energy, and only Judas was happy that he had touched his feet. In fact, Judas was waiting for it too long. He had always been waiting; he had never thought Jesus higher than him. Deep down, he believed that he was more of a philosopher, of a thinker. Deep down, he used to think that he was of a deeper understanding than Jesus. Many times he had tried, many times he used to show faults to Jesus that'This you did wrong.'
When Mary Magdalene came to see Jesus, she brought a bottle of very costly perfume and she poured it on his feet. Judas immediately said,'This is not right.
You should have prohibited her from doing that. This is not good; this is wasting. This much money could have fed the poor of the whole town for many days.' Of course, your intellect will also agree with Judas. His argument was absolutely socialistic; he was a communist. He was speaking rightly, and he knew more economics than Jesus. It is true; why waste so costly a perfume? The feet can be washed with water. There was no need to pour such a costly perfume on them. The perfume could have been sold and the money could have been used for the poor of the town to be fed - perfectly true. The argument was right, but what did Jesus say? Jesus said,'The poor will always be with you, but I will not always be with you. You can feed the poor later on when I am gone, but I cannot stop her. You can see only the perfume, I see her heart. I cannot say no to her. In deep love, in deep overflowing, not finding a way to express, she has poured that perfume. I cannot say no to her.' Hmm... but Jesus' argument is not so strong as Judas' argument. Marx would agree with Judas, Mao would also agree with Judas, and I don't think that anybody will agree with Jesus. Even Christians will feel a little embarrassed about the whole thing - it doesn't fit, doesn't look good. But I agree with Jesus. He understands the language of the heart.
When he touched Judas' feet, immediately he could feel his energy: that he was going to betray, and he was going to betray that very day, that very night.
VERILY, VERILY, I SAY UNTO VOU, THAT ONE OF YOU SHALL BETRAY ME.... THEN SAID JESUS UNTO HIM: THAT THOUB DOEST, DO QUICKLY.
'Why are you waiting? Whatsoever you want to do, do it quick]y; be finished with it.' And even then Jesus could not understand; even then Judas could not see that this man could understand. Just by touching his feet, this man could understand the future, this man could see what was going to happen. This man had read his innermost thought: that he was going to betray, that he had become a conspirator against him, that he was now a part of the enemy group, that he had already bargained that he would deliver Jesus to them and they would have to pay for it. For only thirty silver coins, Jesus was sold.
This is beautiful, because this is what you are also doing; you are selling your possibility of Jesus for not even thirty silver coins; for any rubbish thing you are ready to exchange. You are ready to give your life for any rubbish thing: for a car, for a house, for jewelry; for anything you are ready to sell your innermost Jesus.
Your head is the Judas!
And the Jesus within you is crucified every day, sold in the market, bargained away for nothing valuable.
But people only repent later on. Even Judas repented after Jesus' crucifixion; the next day he killed himself, committed suicide. Because only afterwards, you become aware of what you have done: for just thirty rupees, thirty silver coins, you have sold the greatest man ever? But only later on, at the time of death, when you have crucified your Jesus completely, then you will repent and you will cry. And then you will see what you have done to yourself, to your God who was hiding within you.
... THEN SAID JESUS UNTO HIM: THAT THOU DOEST, DO QUICKLY...
Why did he say this? He said this is as a last opportunity to make Judas aware that he was aware. But Judas would not understand. It is as if he had decided not to understand.
If you have eyes to see, you will find God everywhere, good everywhere:
scriptures in silence and sermons in stones.
But if you don't know how to see, or you have lost the capacity to see, or you have forgotten how to open your eyes and for all practical purposes you have become blind, then even when a Jesus is standing before you, the door open, you cannot see. If you could see, then even in the rock a door would open and you would find God there. You cannot see that even in Jesus, where God is dancing just in front of you, alive in its infinitude... but you cannot see.
Judas missed. And remember, there are more Judases in the world; the majority consists of them. You may call them Christians, but that doesn't matter; the majority consists of Judases. The followers of Judas are millions, and it is rare that somebody follow Jesus, very rare - because to follow Jesus you have to lose yourself. You have to pay the cost; you have to pay for it with your own life, your very being. But to follow Judas nothing is asked; it is free of cost. In fact, Judas promises that you can get many things if you follow him. Jesus simply says,'Lose yourself and then everything will happen'; but losing yourself is the beginning. Judas says,'I will give you everything and you need not lose anything.' The cunning mind agrees with Judas; only a trusting heart can agree with Jesus.
... THEN SAID JESUS? UNTO HIM: THAT THOU DOEST, DO QUICKLY. NOW NO MAN AT THE TABLE KNEW FOR WHAT INTENT HE SPAKE THIS UNTO HIM.
No other disciple could understand why, why he had said suddenly to Judas,'Do it quickly if you want to do it. Don't wait. For whom are you waiting?' Why Jesus said it, no disciple could understand. Because no disciple was in the present, otherwise they could have seen. No disciple was perceptive enough, otherwise they could have understood.
THEREFORE, WHEN JUDAS WAS GONE OUT, (immediately Judas left) JESUS SAID: NOW IS THE SON OF MAN GLORIFIED, AND GOD IS GLORIFIED IN HIM.
'Now is the Son of man glorified'; because now soon he is going to be crucified.
The Son of man is glorified only if the ego is crucified. The ego has its ways of protecting itself. In one way you stop - it finds another. It goes on and on and on. Unless you look so deeply that you can see all the ways of the ego in one glimpse, in one lightning glimpse, you can do one thing and it starts flowing from another.
I was reading a story: A tomcat who was always out at night caused the neighborhood great annoyance because of the noise from his revels with the female cats. The owners eventually had him doctored, but were disconcerted to find that he still stayed out all night and that the noise continued. So they went to the veterinary surgeon to complain about the ineffectiveness of his treatment.'Nothing unusual,' came the cheerful reply.'You see, he now acts in a consultative capacity.'
If you cannot be active at least you can be consultative. If you stop one door of the ego, the ego starts opening another. You have to see the subtle ways of the ego in a lightning flash, so totally that all its cunning subtleties are seen. In that very vision, in that very fire of sudden lightning, the ego disappears and leaves no shadow behind, no trace behind.
'Now is the Son of man glorified, and God is glorified in him.' Why both together? - because crucifixion is a meeting point, it is a crossroad. The ego disappears, and man is glorified because man becomes pure when the ego disappears; but immediately that the ego disappears, God is there, and God is glorified. The ego functions as a double-edged sword: on this side man becomes pure, and in that purity, innocence, God is revealed on the other side. The whole thing is, the whole religion is - how to drop the ego, how to become so aware, alert, that the ego cannot deceive you.
Let me tell you first what ego is. Everybody is born without the ego. When a child is born, he is simply consciousness: floating, flowing, lucid, innocent, virgin - no ego exists. By and by, the ego is created by others. The ego is the accumulated effect of others' opinions about you. Somebody comes, a neighbor, and says,'How beautiful a child,' and looks at the child with a very appreciative look. Now the ego starts functioning. Somebody smiles, somebody does not smile; sometimes the mother is very loving, sometimes she is very angry; and the child is learning that he is not accepted as he is. His being is not accepted unconditionally; there are conditions arouncl. If he cries and weeps and visitors are there in the house, then the mother is very angry. If he cries and weeps and there is no visitor, the mother doesn't bother. If he does not cry and weep, the mother always awards with a loving kiss and caress. When the visitors are there, if he can keep quiet and silent, the mother is tremendously happy and awarding.
He is learning others' opinions about himself; he is looking into the mirror of relationship.
You cannot see your face directly. You have to look in a mirror and in the mirror you can recognize your face. That reflection becomes your idea of your face, and there are a thousand and one mirrors all around you - they all reflect. Somebody loves you, somebody hates you, somebody is indifferent. And then, by and by, the child grows and goes on accumulating the opinions of others. The total essence of the opinions of others is the ego. Then he starts looking at himself the way others look at him. Then he starts looking at himself from the outside - that s what ego is. If people appreciate and applaud, then he thinks that he is perfectly beautiful, accepted. If people don't applaud and don't appreciate, but reject, he feels condemned. Then he goes on seeking ways and means to be appreciated, to be assured again and again that he is worthy, that he has a worth, a meaning and significance. Then one becomes afraid to be oneself. One has to fit with the opinion of others.
If you drop the ego, suddenly you become a child again. Now you are not worried about what others think about you, now you don't pay any attention to what others say about you. You are not concerned, not even a bit. Now you have dropped the mirror. It is pointless - you have your face, why ask the mirror?
And there are many types of mirrors: some make your face look long, some make your face look big, some make your face look small, some make your face look horrible, distorted.
Don't ask the mirror, because then the quality of the glass will always be there in the reflection. And there are millions of mirrors all around you, millions of relationships, and you go on gathering. That's why ego is always inconsistent. It is a crowd; it is a heap with no inner coherence. Somebody says that you are beautiful, then somebody says that you are just homely. Somebody says,'You? - and beautiful? You make me feel horrible, terrible. You are nauseating. You? - and beautiful? You are a nausea. I feel like vomiting whenever I see you.' Now what to do? You collect all these opinions - inconsistent, contradicting each other - and they all become part of your ego.
Ego is a crowd. It is a marketplace because you have gathered it in the marketplace, because you have gathered it from the crowd. It is not you, it is others' opinions about you. Why be bothered? Drop all opinions of others about you. Why not be direct and immediate? Why not see within yourself, in your own nature? Why not face yourself? Why bring a mediator, a mirror into it?
When you start looking into your own nature with closed eyes, you are moving beyond the ego. And once you know who you are - even a slight glimpse - then you will start laughing at the whole ridiculousness of it: that you were asking others who you are. They don't know themselves who they are, so why ask them? You become free; a freedom is attained. Without the ego, you come back to your own nature.
JESUS SAID: NOW IS THE SON OF MAN GLORIFIED, AND GOD IS GLORIFIED IN HIM. A NEW COMMANDMENT I GIVE UNTO YOU, THAT YE LOVE ONE ANOTHER; AS I HAVE LOVED YOU, THAT YE ALSO LOVE ONE ANOTHER. BY THIS SHALL ALL MEN KNOW THAT YE ARE MY DISCIPLES, IF YE HAVE LOVE ONE TO ANOTHER.
Love is the essential message of Jesus, but it has been lost - lost in arguments, debates, discussions, conflicting philosophies, wars.
I would like to tell you one anecdote: One day a little boy asked his parents,'How do wars break out? How are they declared?' He was reading a book on history, and a book on history is nothing but wars, ugly wars. That is all your history is.
The boy became worried, anxious.'Why do wars start? How do they start?' he asked his parents.
So the father, who was very learned in political and economic affairs, started talking about the economic causes of u wars.
But the mother thought that the little boy was too small to understand such complicated things and she said,'Let me explain it.' The mother began to explain and the father became very angry. He grew very angry and hostile, because he was going to teach the child and the mother jumped in. A great argument developed.
The little boy was very frightened indeed, and held up his hands and cried loudly,'Stop, stop! Now I know how wars start.'
Once you create a philosophy, an opinion, you are already on the warpath. If there is ideology, there is going to be fight. This is the predicament: there are people who want the world to be without wars, but they have ideologies and their ideologies create wars. There are communists who go on arranging peace conferences, and they have a particular ideology of how the world should be and how the society should be. There are Catholics who go on talking about peace, but they have an ideology; and there are Hindus who go on talking about peace, but they have an ideology. There are even Jains who talk of non-violence, peace, no war, but they have an ideology - and if you have an ideology you are the cause of war.
A world without wars will be a world without ideologies. A world without wars can be based only on a nonideological love. Love is not an ideology, it is not a theology, it is not a philosophy.'This,' Jesus says,'is my new commandment.'
A NEW COMMANDMENT I GIVE UNTO YOU, THAT YE LOVE ONE ANOTHER; AS I HAVE LOVED YOU, THAT YE ALSO LOVE ONE ANOTHER.
BY THIS SHALL ALL MEN KNOW THAT YE ARE MY DISCIPLES, IF YE HAVE LOVE ONE TO ANOTHER.
Verily, verily, I also say unto you, that only those who love are Christians.
Catholics cannot be Christians; they are against Protestants. Protestants cannot be Christians; they are against Catholics. Christians cannot be Christians; they are against Hindus. Hindus cannot be Christians; they are against Mohammedans and Christians. To follow Christ, one has to follow love. This is his new commandment: follow love and forget everything. Everything is irrelevant; only love has relevance because only love leads you to the divine, only love leads you to the temple of God. Make love your only, and the ONLY commandment. There is nothing else. If you follow love, everything will be set right of its own accord.
One man went to St. Augustine and asked,'Just in short, give me the very essence of religion. I am not a learned man; don't make it very complicated and don't give me many commandments, because I will get confused. You simply say one thing to me, just a key word.'
St. Augustine said,'Then that word is 'love'. You love and don't be bothered by anything else.'
If you love, everything falls in step of its own accord. Let love be your God; let love be your only commandment; let love be your religion. Please remember - don't make an ideology of it. Act in a loving way, be in a loving way. Don't create a philosophy around love because that will create wars. A peaceful world is possible if love starts throbbing in the heart of man. Man has been so inhuman to man in the past that even animals look like angels in comparison. Because up to now we have only talked about love; we have not loved.
Now let us love, and forget all talk about love. Lovers are needed.
And remember one thing which Jesus says, because you may not have listened to it:'A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another' - and now comes the most important clause in the sentence - 'as I have loved you.'
How does a Jesus love? His love is unconditional. He loves; he loves you without any expectations. He loves you just because you are beautiful. It is not that he has some expectations of you; it is not that you have to be in a certain way, then he will love. He simply loves you because you are, because you are God.
You ARE gods; you are already worthy. Whatsoever you are, you have a worth of tremendous value, otherwise God wouldn't allow you to exist. So Jesus''as I have loved you' means: be in the attitude of unconditional love. And remember, only unconditional love is love.
Love conditioned is love corrupted; love unconditioned is the vast sky of being.
It is another word for God.