The Soul's Thirst

Fri, 18 October 1972 00:00:00 GMT
Book Title:
Osho - Finger Pointing to the Moon
Chapter #:
pm in Mt. Abu, Rajasthan, India
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[NOTE: This is a translation of the Hindi series ADHYATMA UPANISHAD. This version is the final edit pending publication.]






This morning we talked about listening, contemplation, assimilation and samadhi. Samadhi, enlightenment, is the end of the world in you and the beginning of the truth. Samadhi is the death of the mind and the birth of the soul. Looked at from this end samadhi is the last step, looked at from the other end samadhi is the first step.

The mind goes on becoming reduced and dissolved more and more through listening, contemplation and assimilation; in samadhi, it is fully dissolved. And when the mind is fully dissolved, there begins the experience of what we really are. This sutra is about this samadhi. And in this sutra are some very deep things to be understood.


Let this first thing be understood with your full attention. If not today, then tomorrow it will be useful to those who are meditating. There is no experience in samadhi. You will be troubled to hear this.

There cannot be any experience in samadhi, and yet samadhi is the supreme experience. This is a paradoxical statement, it looks contradictory, but there are some reasons for it. In samadhi supreme bliss is experienced, but the seeker who is in samadhi does not come to know of it because the seeker and the bliss have become one, and there is no distance between the two for any knowing to take place.

We come to know only those things which are separate from us, at some distance from us. The realization, the experience of bliss in samadhi is not felt during samadhi. When the seeker comes out of the state of samadhi he infers that bliss had happened; it is a hindsight that ultimate bliss had happened, that the nectar had showered. That one had lived in a different dimension, that one had experienced some deeper state of life - all this is remembered afterwards when the mind is back.

Let us understand it this way. Listening, contemplation, assimilation and samadhi - these are the four steps. It is through these steps that the seeker reaches to the door of samadhi and realizes. If the seeker is not able to come out of samadhi and remains in it, he will never be able to relate his experience to anyone. Then there simply is no way of relating one's experience.

But any seeker who reaches the state of samadhi never returns the same person; he returns a completely new person. On the return all relationships are changed in his mind; however, he does return into the mind. Previously, when he used to live in the mind, he was a slave of the mind, he had no mastery over anything; the mind was able to get him to do anything it wanted. He had to agree to whatsoever mind was dictating, he had to run wherever the mind was making him run. It was a slavery by the mind, mind had the reins of the soul in its hands.

When a seeker returns from the doors of samadhi into the mind he returns as the master. Now the reins are in his own hands. Now he moves the mind where he wants to move it. If he does not want to move it anywhere, he does not move it. If he wants it to function, he makes it function, otherwise not. Now mind has no power of its own. But the seeker who has attained to samadhi can remember things only after he returns to the mind - of course, as its master this time. Because memory is a faculty of mind, that is why he can look back through mind to see what had happened.

This means that mind registers not only the events of the worldly life, but also registers what is happening when the seeker enters samadhi. Mind is a two-sided mirror. In it the outside world is reflected, in it the inside world is reflected. So it is only when the seeker returns to the mind that he is able to experience what happened. If he returns through the same three steps, then only can he express it.

While returning from samadhi, the first step of the seeker will be assimilation. It is at the step of assimilation that he will start experiencing what he has known in samadhi in a subtle form, at a deep level, at his own ultimate center. He will start seeing it reflected in his own behavior. When he lifts his foot, it will not feel as if it is the same old foot; the foot will have a sort of dance to it. When he raises his eyebrows and sees, the eyes will not feel as if they are the same old eyes, but fresh and clear like the morning dewdrop. When getting up he will feel as if weightless, as if he can fly in the sky. When he takes his meals he will see that the food is going into his body and he himself has never taken meals.

Now whatsoever the seeker just returned from samadhi does on that first step of assimilation, there will be the reflection of samadhi in his behavior; everywhere his behavior will have a new grace.

That man of yesterday is dead. He is not the same person who was there before samadhi, standing within the boundary of assimilation. The step is the same, but this person climbing down is different.

He has returned having known something, and he has returned knowing such a thing that his entire life is transformed. And in this knowing the old has died and the new is born.

At the step of assimilation he will see that which has happened in samadhi reflected. The juice that has flowed within him will be seen flowing in every direction in his behavior, from his every cell.

Mahakashyapa was every now and then coming to ask Buddha when samadhi would happen.

Buddha was telling him not to worry, and that he would not need to come and ask him when it happened. When it happens, you will recognize it. And not only will you recognize it, whosoever sees you will recognize it if they have even a little bit of ability to see, because when that revolution happens within its rays shine out, piercing their way through the person's body, being and everything.

On the step of assimilation the seeker will know that he is a different person; that he is new, that he is born again. He will know that he is not the same person who had gone into samadhi. Someone had gone in, somebody else has come out.

The next step below assimilation is contemplation. When the seeker comes into the mind further down from assimilation, the moment of contemplation will arise. Now the seeker will be able to think, look back and contemplate as to what really happened: "What did I see? What is it that I came to know? What did I live?" Now he will try to put his experience into thoughts, words and concepts.

It is those who have been able to put their experience into words at the step of contemplation who have given birth to the Vedas, the Upanishads, the Bible and the Koran. Many have reached the state of samadhi, but it is a difficult task to bring back to the step of contemplation what has been known.

Remember, the earlier journey towards samadhi was not as difficult as we think it is. If we compare it with the return journey it was very easy. This return journey is very difficult. Thousands attain samadhi, but only a very few of them are able to come back and take a footing at the step of assimilation. Still fewer are able to descend to the step of contemplation. And still fewer make it to that first step called listening.

The name of this step is changed on the return journey, about which I shall talk to you later.

Thousands reach to the state of samadhi, but rarely does one of them become a buddha. Buddha means one who is able to climb down all the four steps and give to the world what he has known.

Contemplation means putting all that is thoughtless into thoughts on the return journey. Putting that which cannot be spoken, cannot be thought, within the boundaries of words is the most impossible of all things in this world.

You see it when the morning sun rises. Seldom is a painter able to catch that rising aspect of the sun in his painting. It is not very difficult to paint the sun, any painter can do that, but to catch the rising aspect of it is difficult. The phenomenon of rising, that quality of growth which is successively growing - if that gets painted, so that seeing the painting one feels that the sun is about to move...

now, now it is rising up, up.... This seldom happens. To catch a tree in a painting is not difficult, but to catch its aliveness is difficult. Looking at it one may feel that the leaves are about to flutter any moment, a slight breeze and the flowers will fall off. This is very difficult to paint - very difficult. And that is the difference between photography and painting. No matter how sharp a photograph may be, it portrays only the dead aspects, it does not portray the aliveness.

However, the sun, the trees, the flowers are experiences of ordinary life; they can be caught.

Samadhi is an extraordinary experience - it happens to only one in millions. And what happens there, all the senses become incapable of informing about it. The ears do not hear there, eyes cannot see there, hands cannot touch there, and the experience that happens there is boundless. The vast immensity falling over your roof, or the whole sky coming down into your courtyard, the havoc, the dumbfoundedness that will come to you - something similar to this happens in the moment of samadhi. This tiny personal space of consciousness, and the whole ocean descends over it.

Kabir has said that first he figured that the drop had fallen into the ocean. But when he came to his senses he realized that the situation was just the opposite: it is the ocean that had fallen into the drop. So Kabir has said that at first he thought that he would be able to somehow tell something or the other after returning - though that too appeared difficult. It is difficult.

Kabir's words are,


"Oh friend! Seeking and searching, Kabir was gradually lost. The drop has fallen in the ocean, how can the drop be sought out?"

The drop that fell into the ocean, how to bring it out again in order that it may narrate the happening to the world? This was already difficult, but Kabir afterwards changed the lines of the song, cancelling the previous ones, and said, "That was a mistake committed because of haste. The experience was new. I could not quite understand what had happened. Out of the old habit I saw things the wrong way around." Then he wrote the verse differently, HERAT HERAT HEY SAKHI RAHYA KABIR HERAYI SAMUNDA SAMANA BUNDA MEN SO KAT HERA JAYI.

"Oh friend, seeking and searching, Kabir was gradually lost. The ocean has fallen into the drop, how can the drop be sought out?

"The ocean has descended into the drop. Had it been the drop that had fallen into the ocean perhaps somehow I would have sought it out, but just the opposite has happened: it is the whole ocean that has fallen into the drop. Now even if I want to I would not know where to look for this drop. Now this drop cannot be found."

The mediums that have enabled us to know all that we have known in the world become useless in knowing what happens in the moment of samadhi. We ourselves become useless. Our very existence gets shattered. Some bigger existence, which has no limits, bursts forth on us - suddenly.

We die in the process.

Samadhi is the ultimate death, bigger than the physical death; because in the physical death only the body dies, the mind survives, whereas in samadhi the mind dies. For the first time our entire relationship with the mind breaks; for the first time all the connecting strings of the mind snap, making us separate. And our whole knowledge was of the mind. So in samadhi, for the first time, we stand utterly ignorant.

Let me repeat it: in samadhi our knowledge does not help, because all that knowledge was learned by the mind, and that mind is left far behind, far away. We have gone beyond the mind. The one who knew is no longer a companion there. The one who understood everything, the one who had the knowledge of all kinds of words and doctrines, the one who had digested all the scriptures, is left far behind. It is not only the outer garment, the body, that is left behind, but the very mind is left behind. All that has been our deepest experience is left behind. Taking the jump from the mind the seeker now stands at the very door of samadhi; now he has no way of knowing.

Whosoever enters the door to samadhi is suddenly totally ignorant. There is no way there for knowing anything, no system for knowing anything, no means for knowing anything, just the pure knowing remains. It is very difficult to give any information after coming back. Who is there to give information? Who is there to bring the news? But the information has been given. Some people have made untiring efforts to do this.

They are the most compassionate ones in this world who gave information after returning from samadhi. Why? Because even the desire to return from samadhi does not arise. Returning from samadhi is like returning from a situation where you achieved everything you wanted, where all wishes were fulfilled, where there remained no reason for even a slight movement, a slight activity to return from such a place.

It is said that when Buddha attained samadhi he did not come out of it for seven days. It is a beautiful story. It says that all the gods gathered at his feet, Indra began to weep and Brahma put his head on Buddha's feet and they all requested Buddha not to remain like that. "Because," they said, "even we gods pine for the message that the person returning from samadhi gives. And so many people for so many lifetimes wait for someone to become a buddha and deliver the message after coming back from samadhi, to speak and tell what he has known. So please do not remain silent, please speak."

But Buddha said, "There is no one left here to speak, there is no desire left to speak. Moreover, what I have witnessed - it is hard even for me to believe that it can be spoken. Where then is the chance of listeners understanding it?"

When the gods did not agree, Buddha further said, "If you do not agree, I will speak; but I tell you that these things that I may say to somebody, I myself would not have understood had someone else told them to me before my own realization. So how will anybody else understand? Through this experience I have also come to another understanding, that those who will be able to understand what I have to say can also reach without me; and those who would not be able to understand what I have to say - there is no sense in racking one's brain in front of them."

But the gods gave a very lovely argument. They said, "We do understand, as you have rightly said, that those who would be able to understand are the very people who are standing on the verge of the experience, only a step away from it; they would somehow be able to cross this distance too even without you. No, we are not asking you to speak for them. And this too we accept, that there are people who have not taken even a single step on the path. Your voice will not reach to these - they will not understand. We do not ask you to speak for them either. But there are such people also who are in the middle of the above two types. Those who would not perhaps be able to understand if you do not speak, but can perhaps understand if you do speak."

The gods emphasized 'perhaps' though. But they also said one more thing to Buddha, "These people in the 'perhaps' category, they may understand, they may not. But if even one person who might have understood missed because of you not speaking.... You think about it. It will be a pain to you, it will be a pain on you. And such a thing buddhas have never done before." So Buddha spoke.

In the moment of samadhi it is very natural to feel that now all speaking, telling, explaining is useless.

To whom to tell? To whom to say? Whom to listen? But despite all this, some people have returned from samadhi.

On coming back to the contemplation step, a most difficult thing happens to such people. Hence great artists are not those artists who compose songs and poems, not those who create paintings and sculpt, but the great artists are those who at this step of contemplation put the absolutely invisible and imperceptible experience of samadhi into visible and perceptible word pictures. The great artists are those who make efforts that somehow, if even a few hints can be given... who create some devices, devise some system of thoughts, some corollary of thoughts from where you too can have at least a small glimpse, a slight sensation, a little thrill of that experience - even if at the mental level.

Many people attain even to this step of contemplation. But the last step - which was called shravana, listening, the first step while going - that same step now becomes pravachan, discoursing, while returning from samadhi. The step is the same - listening, speaking. What was shravana, the right listening, on the way towards samadhi becomes pravachan, the right speaking, on the way back from samadhi.

And remember, on that first step towards samadhi is the disciple, and on this last step on the way back from samadhi is the master, and the meeting that happens between the two is upanishad.

Where the listener is rightly present and where the speaker is rightly present the phenomenon of the meeting between the two is upanishad.

The word upanishad means that which one knew in being near the master, that which one listened to sitting near the master, that which came into one's experience in his presence, that which echoed in his nearness, that which was touched in his proximity.

Upanishad means sitting near, being near, having the closeness.

So the work of the disciples is just to listen, and the master should remain just the speech. The listener is not there, the speaker is not there; here remains just the speech, there remains just the capability of listening, then upanishad happens.

The sutra says:


Whether it is bliss being experienced, silence being experienced, peace being experienced, nothingness being experienced or emancipation being experienced, none of these experiences can be directly caught in samadhi ... HENCE THEY ARE NOT EXPERIENCED. These dispositions are not consciously experienced.


So even Buddha cannot say that it is so in samadhi. He too says only this much, that it is his inference that it is so in samadhi. Mahavira used to say anything only with the prefix 'perhaps' added. He would say, "Perhaps there is bliss there."

Nobody should deduce from this that Mahavira does not know. From his words it appears so - if Mahavira says 'perhaps', then it seems he also has some doubts. It is not due to any doubt but due to extreme loyalty to truth that he speaks thus. Mahavira's loyalty to truth is so untainted and so virgin that it is difficult to find such loyalty to truth elsewhere.

So what Mahavira is saying is that the mind through which he is knowing this was not present at the time of the experience. For the mind, this is news heard from a distance; where the happening took place, mind was not present. Mind is not an eyewitness. The mind was away. It has thought and used inference now, but the event happened far away.

It is as if sitting here we can see the snow covering the peak of Gourishankar - from here! The mind was physically far away from that peak, and it has only inferred the cold prevailing there at the peak of Gourishankar.

Hence Mahavira uses the word syat, perhaps. He says that perhaps there is supreme bliss there.

He does so because of his extreme loyalty to truth, because these are, after all, the inferences of the mind. Mahavira has known, for him it is not an inference. But the one who knows becomes so much one in the moment of knowing that nothing is experienced. When Mahavira returns into the mind, after knowing....

Let us understand it this way. It is as if you go to the peak of Gourishankar and become one with the cold there, you yourself become the cold. Or you become one with the snow there, you too get frozen like the snow and thus have no experience because the experiencer is not separate anymore.

Then you come down from the peak and after reaching the lowlands you pick up your binoculars and look again at Gourishankar through them. The experience of what has been known has remained reverberating inside. The closeness was such that because of the lack of distance necessary for knowing it could not be known. It has now attained a perspective because of the distance. Now picking up the binoculars of mind one has looked back. Now it feels through inference that there was ultimate coolness there, there was an expanse of absolutely spotless white snow; what a great height it was! It feels that all gravitation had disappeared, as if one had attained wings and could fly in the sky; what a clear sky it was! It feels that it was such a blueness that even the clouds were all left down below and only a cloudless empty sky had remained.

But all this is an afterthought when standing back on the low ground. Hence the sutra says ... ARE INFERRED THROUGH RECOLLECTIONS OF THE MIND.


In this second sutra there are two very valuable words: karma and dharma, action and religion. What we do is action, and what we are is religion. Religion means our self-nature and action means what we are doing. Action means our self-nature reaching outside. Action means that we reach outside ourselves into the world. Action means that we connect with somebody other than ourselves. Self- nature means separate from the other, without relating to the world - the 'I am', the inner being. It has nothing to do with your doing. It is not made of what you do. It is present prior to all your doings.

It is your nature.

There can be a mistake in karma, the doing; there can be none in dharma. Remember, the word dharma does not mean religion here. Dharma here means a quality - our self-nature, our inner self-nature, our being.

So the more the doing, the more the self-nature goes on getting covered. All that we do goes on burying our being underneath. And there are so many layers of our doing that slowly, slowly we forget completely that there is any being of ours other than that of the doings.

If somebody asks you, "Who are you?" - whatever answer you give is about your doing, not about your being. You say you are an engineer, you say you are a doctor, you say you are a businessman.

Do you realize that business is a doing? You are not a businessman, you are doing business. How can a person be a doctor? A person can do the work of a doctor. How can a person be an engineer?

If a person can become an engineer, the person as such will be lost. The person can do the work of an engineer. Engineering is his doing, his work, not his being.

Whatsoever description you give about yourself, if you look deeply into it you will find that you are always saying what you do and never saying a thing about your being. And you cannot. You yourself know nothing about it, you know only what you do. You are thorough about the doing part - what you do, what you can do. All that you are able to say is what you have done in the past and what you are able to do in the future. All those certificates you carry around say nothing but what you can do, not what you are. If you say you are a sadhu, a seeker, it means you are a doer of seeking.

If somebody says he is a thief, it means that his work is the stealing of things. One's act is that of seeking the truth, the other's is that of stealing things.

But what is your being? What is within you? When you were not yet born from the womb of your mother, what did it mean to be a sadhu, a thief, an engineer or a doctor? Had someone asked you while you were in the womb of your mother who you were, it would have been difficult to answer, because you were not an engineer then, you were not a doctor then, you had not yet done any business. Had someone asked you in your mother's womb, "Who is in?" no answer would have been possible. Or do you think it would have been possible? You were still in the mother's womb - no answer could have come.

Now many methods have been discovered for brainwashing. You say you are an engineer, but your brain can be washed, and after the brainwashing is done properly, if you are asked, "Who are you?" you will just remain blank, because your being an engineer was only in your memory system. You had studied, had received certificates, had done something, had received merits or demerits; it was all in your memory, which has now been washed out. Now you cannot give any answer as to who you are. But you still are. Your being cannot be effaced by washing out your memory, but the impressions of your actions can be washed out.

This sutra says:


Naturally, every day, each moment, the action-impressions are being accumulated. We are sitting, standing, breathing - action is happening. We are sleeping, dreaming - action is happening.

Nobody can run away from action, because running away is also an action. Where will one go?

Will you go and sit down in a jungle? Sitting is also an action. Will you close your eyes there?

Closing the eyes is also an action. Anything you may do, where there is any doing there is karma, the action.

Each moment so many actions are being done. Their shadow, their memory, their impression, their conditioning goes on gathering within us. Whatsoever you are doing is getting accumulated over your being. It is like grooves made on a gramophone disc. When you play back the disc, all that is stored in those grooves becomes alive and starts manifesting itself again. Your mind is exactly the same - a recorded collection of all your actions, everything accumulated. Whatsoever you have done, the grooves have formed upon you. And these grooves are of your endless lives. It is a big burden. And you go on repeating almost the same things over and over again. Your condition is almost like a worn out disc where the needle has got stuck in the same groove and you go on playing it - the same line repeats itself again and again and again.

What are you doing? Yesterday you did the same thing, the day before yesterday you did the same thing, today you are doing the same thing, tomorrow you will also do the same thing - the same anger, the same greed, the same attachment, the same lust, everything the same... a worn-out record. The needle is stuck in the same groove, unable to get past it, and creating the same sound over and over.

This is why there is so much boredom in life. There is bound to be, because nothing new happens.

The needle simply does not proceed further. Just look back on the past thirty, forty years of your life: What have you done? You are playing the same record, the same thing goes on repeating itself every day. This is what the seers of India have called avagaman, the cycle of birth and death. The same again, the same again; the same in this life, the same in the next life, the same in the life after that life - the story of the past is the same, the story of the future is the same. The same sexual desire, the same anger, the same hate, the same friendship, the same enmity, the same earning of money, the same making of a house - and after doing all this one finds one day that a gust of wind has come and this whole house of cards has collapsed.

But just as children immediately collect the cards and start building the house again, we also immediately take a new birth and get busy with building a new house of cards. This time we try to build a stronger house; but the plan of the house is the same, the structure is the same - the mind is the same. We end up doing the same again and go on sinking the same way again and again.

It is not only the sun that sets every evening and rises again in the morning - you also go on setting and rising in the same manner. It is circular, a wheel. The word samsara means a wheel, which goes on revolving, on the same axis.

The endless karma, the action-impressions that are accumulated, get destroyed by this samadhi.

This is worth understanding, because many people think that if bad action-impressions have accumulated, we should destroy them by good actions. They are mistaken. Bad action-impressions cannot be destroyed by good action-impressions. Bad action-impressions will also remain intact and good actions will be accumulated - that is what will happen at the most. They do not cancel each other. There is no way for them to cancel each other.

A person commits a theft, then he repents and becomes a sadhu, a good man. By becoming a sadhu, those action-impressions of the theft that are lying within him are not cancelled. There is no way for that. A separate action-impression, that of being a sadhu, forms. The action-impression of being a sadhu does not coincide with the action-impression of being a thief. What has a sadhu to do with a thief? You were a thief, you had drawn one kind of action-groove on the mind. Then you became a sadhu. Now the action-grooves of being a sadhu do not get drawn over those of being a thief, because being a sadhu is the happening of a different part of your mind from that of being a thief.

What happens instead?

Over the action-grooves of the thief are crammed the action-grooves of the sadhu; nothing is cancelled. The sadhu rides over the thief, that's all that happens. This means yet another man, a thief-sadhu, is born. The goodness of being a sadhu cannot cancel the badness of stealing. The thief continues to remain within, only an imposition takes place - merely one more rider on top of it.

So even the thief was okay in a way, even the sadhu was okay in a way, but this hotch-potch of thief and sadhu that is created is the big trouble. It is a continuous inner conflict, because the thief continues his efforts and the sadhu continues his efforts. And God alone knows how many different forms we accumulate within us which do not cancel each other, which are created separately and remain so. Hence this sutra says that they are all destroyed through samadhi.

Action does not cancel action. Nonaction destroys action. Understand this properly: action does not cancel action, action makes action only more dense. Only nonaction cancels action. And nonaction is attained in samadhi, when the doer does not exist any more.

When we reach that state of consciousness where there is only being, not the doing at all, where not even a ripple of doing has arisen ever, where only the being, the existence has always remained - the being, not the doing - in that moment of being, one suddenly realizes that all the actions that had ever been done by you were not done by you. Some actions were done by the body - let the body have the responsibility for them. Some actions were done by the mind - let the mind have the responsibility for them. But you had not done any actions at all.

Simultaneous to this realization the network of all action-impressions is destroyed. The soul-ness is the cancelation of all actions. It is on losing the soul-ness that the illusion that, "I have done," is created.

When a person is stealing, it is either activated by his body or by his mind. Some people's bodies come to such a condition that stealing has to be done. A person is hungry, the body compels him to do the stealing. The soul never commits any theft. There is the body's hunger, its pain, and its misery; or one's child is dying and there is no money for medicine - one commits the theft. All this is a theft because of the body.

Up until now we have not been able to differentiate between the thief from the body and the thief from the mind. A thief from the body means that it is the society that is criminal. A thief from the mind is himself criminal - a thief from the mind is a different matter. He does not need anything, back home his coffers are full, but he finds a penny lying on the road and he picks it up and puts in his pocket. Now, this man is a thief from the mind. It is not because of any physical need, his body is not imploring him to steal, but his greed. This one penny is not really going to add to his wealth but something will be added, at least one penny.

He may have millions of rupees, but the intention to pick up one paisa remains - this man is the real criminal. But he is never caught. It is the thief who steals because of the body needs who is caught.

The real culprit is the other one, because he has no reason at all - on the body level - to steal, and yet he steals. Stealing is his habit, he derives juice from stealing.

Psychology talks about a disease known as kleptomania. It is a disease of the mind. Most people are suffering from this disease, but only some persons, whose disease becomes acute, come to the notice of psychology.

I have known one professor, a rich man, very well off, who had everything one may desire, but he had only one son and this son was a kleptomaniac. He was suffering from this disease of stealing.

He would steal anything - it did not matter what that thing was. If he came to your house and a button was lying on the floor, he would immediately put it in his pocket. He had no use for it. There may be even a sewing needle lying somewhere and he would put it in his pocket. He would be looking at a book of yours and he would tear off a page and put it in his pocket.

The professor once asked me what to do about him, because he did not steal such things that you felt that he was really stealing and was a thief. He just took trivial things. The boy was studying for his M.A. degree. He was clever. I developed a little relationship with him, so he took me to see his closet where he had kept everything that he had ever stolen. Each item was labelled as to who was deceived for a certain thing, from whose house a certain other thing was removed, etcetera. He was relishing the fact that up till now nobody had been able to know who had taken away a certain thing and how. If he had stolen a button from your house, on the label was written, "I brought it from such and such person's house, right in front of his nose, but he could not have had even an inkling that such a thing was taking place."

Now this interest in stealing is of a different type. It has nothing to do with body-need. Thefts are either from the body or from the mind, there is no theft from the soul. So the day you enter your soul, you suddenly realize, "I have not done those thefts, I have not performed those actions, I was only present in those actions. It is true that those actions could not have been committed without me. It is also true that I had not committed those actions."

Science uses a word, very valuable and significant - catalytic agent. If you split water you will get hydrogen and oxygen, nothing else. H2O is the formula - two atoms of hydrogen and one atom of oxygen constitute water. But if you mix two atoms of hydrogen and one atom of oxygen you will not get water.

This is very interesting. When you split water, you get two parts of hydrogen and one part of oxygen.

Naturally, when you mix these two in the same proportion you should get water. But that does not happen. There is one more thing whose presence is required for the making of water. It does not enter the actual formulation, but the formulation itself can take place only in its presence. That thing is electricity, in this case, and it is called a catalytic agent. In the sky, when lightning happens, it acts as a catalytic agent and water is formed from the oxygen and hydrogen present in the air. It does not do anything, it does not enter the water, but its presence is necessary.

If you take hydrogen and oxygen and let an electric current pass through, water will be formed.

But if you split that water, you will get only hydrogen and oxygen, not the electricity. It means that electricity does not enter water as one of its constituents, but the water cannot be formed without its presence. Science calls this particular phenomenon a catalytic agent.

You cannot commit a theft without the presence of a soul. The soul is like a catalytic agent, its presence is necessary. The body alone - just the body alone - never goes out to commit any theft.

Even if you slip money in the pocket of a dead body, it won't be called a thief when discovered. What does a corpse have to do with theft? Because it is a corpse, it cannot perform actions as such.

Mind alone also cannot be a thief. No matter how much a mind may think, it cannot commit a theft alone. Not only that, if there was no soul inside it could not even think. The presence of the soul is necessary, only then does the theft happen. But still, the day one reaches to the soul one finds that the theft had happened in the presence of the soul but the soul was not involved in the theft. The soul was only present. Its presence is so powerful that things start happening.

A piece of magnet is lying there; iron pieces are being attracted. Perhaps you may think that the magnet is attracting them - you are wrong. The very presence of the magnet is enough. It does not have to attract, it does not have to make any effort to attract. The magnet does not have to contract any muscles to draw the iron pieces toward it. A magnet does not even know that it is attracting.

The very presence of the magnet and the iron pieces begin to be attracted.

The very presence of the soul and actions begin; the body is activated, the mind is activated and the actions begin their journey. The day you re-enter this soul, during samadhi, you are freed of all action-impressions - not because these actions had in any way bound you but because they had never bound you in the first place. You had never before attained to your inner self, where you would have understood that you are unbound.

This view of the Upanishad is in one sense very much against morality. Because of this, there has been great opposition towards the Upanishads deep within the mind. Whosoever is a moralist would ask you to cancel your bad actions with good actions, to do good deeds and not to do bad deeds.

The Upanishads say that performing deeds as such is wrong. Whether you perform a good deed or a bad deed, that is a secondary matter. Your notion of doing, that you are a doer - that is the evil.

Evil is of two types: good evil and bad evil, but both are evils, because the belief that you do something is the fallacy. You are only present and the action is happening, action is happening only in your presence. You are only a witness, not a doer.

The day you taste this presence not as a doer but as a witness you will find out that whatever has ever happened only happened around you; whatever has ever happened you have not done, it only happened around you. Events had happened, had happened close by to you, but still you had remained apart from them.

It is just as when you dream at night and you get up in the morning and you say, "I had a dream"; you remain separate from it. It may be that you committed a theft in the dream, it may be that you became imprisoned in the dream, it may be that you saved yourself from going to jail by paying a bribe. Anything can happen in a dream, but when you wake up in the morning the dream disappears completely - as if it had never happened. After waking up in the morning you don't regard yourself as a thief.

But did you ever give it a thought: could the dream have been there without you? The dream could happen because you were there. If you were not there... the dream would not happen to a dead body. The dream happened because you were there, your presence was a must for it to happen.

Yet on waking up in the morning you do not feel concerned that you committed a theft. What to do now to offset it? Fast, do penance, give to charity, renounce? What to do? No, you do not feel to do anything. A dream does not even remain in the memory for more than two minutes after waking up.

It disappears like a column of smoke.

In the state of right samadhi the whole of life feels like a dream, whatsoever has been lived... not just in this life but in the infinite lives in arriving to the state of samadhi. Just as in the morning when you come to the awake state from sleep, similarly, when you arrive in samadhi from this so-called waking state, that whole circle of the past, all that dream-stuff disappears like smoke.

The one who has arrived in samadhi knows for the first time that, "I just am; all the actions that have happened near me are like dreams." And no anxiety or regret about them remains. Neither any self-praise remains, "What great deeds I have done," nor any self-condemnation remains, "What mean deeds I have done." No, everything disappears.

In your dreams, whether you were an emperor, a great sannyasin, a murderer or a thief - none of these alter the taste of your morning tea. All the three become meaningless. It is not that if you were an emperor in your dream then in the morning you are drinking your tea dreaming of the dream, or if you were a thief, a scoundrel, a murderer in the dream, then you are feeling guilty and the tea tastes acrid. Nor do you give up taking tea because you were a sadhu, a sage in the dream. It also does not happen that you think, "I have been a saint all night long and now I am drinking tea the next morning - what a shameful act." No, when you drink your tea in the morning all your dreams have gone.

I have heard... Rinzai was a great Zen master in Japan, and once, when he got up in the morning, he told his disciple who was standing by, "I will narrate a dream I saw last night if you will explain to me."

His disciple said, "Please wait for a couple of minutes, I shall first bring water for you to wash your face and hands."

The disciple brought the water. Rinzai washed his face and hands and smiled. By that time another disciple had come. Rinzai said, "I had a dream last night. I was going to tell the dream to this first disciple, asking him to define it, but he defined it before my telling him. Will you define it? Shall I tell it to you?" The other disciple said, "Kindly wait a minute, let me first bring a cup of tea for you and then we will see."

After drinking the tea, Rinzai laughed and said, "I am very pleased, now there is no need to tell you my dream." There was yet another person present who was watching all this. He thought there was no limit to the foolishness. He said, "There is a limit to everything. The dream has not even been told and the definitions have already been made, and everything is solved." He requested Rinzai to at least narrate the dream, so one could know what the dream was.

Rinzai said, "I was testing my disciples. Had they shown any readiness to define the dream I would have thrown them out of the monastery. Is there any need to define a dream? It was a dream, and the matter is over. This first one did the right thing. He was saying, 'There is still some shadow of the dream lurking, so just wash your face with cold water.' This second one also did the right thing:

'Perhaps the washing of your face was not enough, the dream is still lurking hazily in the mind, so have a cup of hot tea and wake up!' - and that is the definition of a dream. Can there be any other definition of a dream? Just wake up and a dream becomes meaningless. What is there to define in it? No one ever bothers to define what is meaningless."

What we call big deeds, small deeds, good deeds, bad deeds - how many divisions have we not made - moral, immoral, good conduct, bad conduct; they all become meaningless, futile in samadhi.

On awakening in samadhi one finds out that it was all a long, endless, infinite dream, and one was just present there. You had not entered it, you were standing just outside. This is why all action- impressions are destroyed, and dharma, the self-nature, arises. When all action-impressions are cancelled, when all that we were involved in is cancelled, we come to know that which we are, that which is our being, our self-nature. Self-nature is dharma, the religion.


Dharmamegha is a lovely word. Clouds we have seen. When Ashadh, the first month of monsoon comes, clouds gather in the sky. But we are not aware of the whole phenomenon. Those clouds gather in the sky in Ashadh, and the peacocks start dancing. Big cracks have developed in the vast stretches of land due to the summer heat, as if the earth has opened its lips, as if the earth has opened its doors on all sides to drink the drops of water to its heart's content. And the thirsty earth has been waiting for so long, and the thirsty trees have been listless like fishes thrown out on dry sand. Then those clouds gather in the sky and the rains begin to shower under the shadow of the dark clouds, and a dance, a song spreads all over.

Dharmamegha is a phenomenon similar to Ashadh that happens within you. It is as if your being was thirsty for lifetimes, cracks had appeared in it, there was no trace of the water anywhere that may quench the thirst. You were drinking water, but that only increased the thirst rather than quenching it. You drank many types of water and traveled to many water sources, and who knows what you did not search for and hold on to. But every time the hope turned into despair, nothing came to your hands. This thirsty and torn-apart earth of your entire being, full of longing... rainclouds gather over it for the first time in the moments of samadhi, Ashadh comes within, and a rainshower of nectar - it is only a symbol - a rainshower of nectar starts happening for the first time. For the first time, in the moments of samadhi, the soul is bathed and the nectar starts showering from those clouds in an endless number of streams.

This description is only symbolic. The actual happening is far bigger. Calling it nectar cannot actually give us any idea about it. But still we get some indication that the clouds gathered in the sky... rainshowers started from them and the soul, thirsty for lives upon lives, was satiated.


But why is it called dharmamegha? Because the self-nature for the first time showers upon oneself.

Dharma means the self-nature.

Whatsoever we have known up to now was the nature of the other. Sometimes when beauty was seen it was in someone else. Sometimes when love was received it was from someone else.

Happiness was received, unhappiness was received. It was always from the other, all information was through others; there was no experience of one's own. Someone else, someone else, someone else - always the other and only that other was important. Now for the first time the other is removed and the self starts showering over the self. It is like our own springs have burst open, it is like one found one's own source and the self began showering over the self.

Dharmamegha means the self-nature has started showering. You yourself become bathed in it, drowned in it; become fresh, become new. All the action-impressions, all their dust, all the mess from the infinite journeys, all the rubbish that has gathered over one, is all swept away. All that remains is naturalness, spontaneity; all that remains is oneself, nothing else.

In one sense we can call it the ultimate blessedness, in one sense we can say this is the ultimate treasure, and in one sense we can say this is the ultimate poverty. If we think of the divine, this man has attained the ultimate wealth. It is this dharmamegha samadhi that Jesus called, "Poverty of the spirit." When someone reaches this point he becomes poor in every respect. Now he has nothing else except himself, nothing else remains except one's own self. This is what will be called poverty.

This is why Buddha called his sannyasins bhikkhus, not swamis. It was because of the dharmamegha samadhi. Buddha said, "I will not call my sannyasins swamis, I will call them bhikkhus." But they mean the same thing. If you look from the side of the world they have become bhikkhus, beggars; if you look from the side of the divine they have become swamis, the owners, the emperors.

Hindus were using the word swami from the other aspect: after attaining to samadhi one becomes for the first time an emperor, a master. Up to now one had been a beggar, begging all around, with folded hands and an outstretched begging bowl. Up to now your soul had been nothing more than a begging bowl. Whatever crumbs of bread someone threw in that begging bowl was your only treasure. Leftovers, defiled and stale food, crumbs fallen down from the dining tables - you were collecting it all and considering it your wealth. He was a beggar up to now.

Hence Hindus called the sannyasin attaining to this dharmamegha samadhi, swami. But Buddha said, "Whatever was there up to this time - all the riches, the empire, the whole world - has all been left behind. Nothing of the other has remained, only the self. The ultimate poverty has happened.

When you are just alone without anything else, not even clothes, not even your own house, not even your own land - nothing is left as your own but only the self... who can be poorer? Even a beggar has something other than just his self. It may be little, but it is something; something other than his self. It may be just underwear, but that too is wealth."

Even a beggar is not so much a beggar that he is all alone, without anything else.

Buddha told his bhikkhus that the world should drop from them in such a way that nothing remains, that not even a trace of the world remains. You become a total beggar as far as the world and its belongings are concerned.

But these two things are the same. One who becomes a beggar from the side of the world becomes a swami from the side of the soul. One who becomes a swami from the side of the soul becomes a beggar from the side of the world. That is why we have given so much respect to the bhikkhu, as never to any person with possessions. We have installed the bhikkhu on a throne on which we have never installed even an emperor. The word bhikkhu became respectable.

Now the meaning of the word bhikkhu is beggar, and if you call someone a bhikkhu he will want to fight with you. But Buddha called his most blessed disciples bhikkhus. Whosoever he called bhikkhu became blessed. Sometimes such people create problems even in the field of language. People like Buddha leave the language topsy-turvy. There was a clear meaning for the word bhikkhu and he spoiled it. He gave it a totally new meaning - the bhikkhu became an emperor. If emperors bowed down at the feet of bhikkhus, that endowed great dignity to the bhikkhu.

Dharmamegha samadhi makes one a beggar from one side and an emperor from the other side.


Remember, both virtue and sin. This is the depth of the Upanishadic thinking. The thickets of virtue and sin, both; all the good you had done, that too, all the bad you had done, that too... the thickets of both are destroyed at their roots.

Do not think that when you attain God you will keep the bank balance of your virtues with you - "I built an inn for free accommodation. I built a temple. I gave food to a certain number of brahmins.

Do you have a record of that?" If you arrived at the gates of paradise with an account of all this, it does not matter if the inscription at the entrance says 'Paradise', inside you will find only hell.

In the language of this world, virtue and sin are higher and lower. Sin is bad and virtue is good. This may be alright in the view of the society, but in the ultimate view of dharma, both virtue and sin are meaningless because being a doer is sin and being a non-doer is virtue. There is one thing that is clear - only one who is a non-doer, one who is egoless, will be able to enter. Only he will be able to enter there who is not - one who has disappeared and is going there as a nothingness. If you as an ego are still there even slightly the path is very narrow, you will not be able to enter.

There is a statement by Jesus which has never had its spiritual meaning explained. In fact, the West is not capable of finding the spiritual meaning; hence whatever meaning is derived turns out to be worldly.

Jesus' words are, "It is possible for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle, but a rich person shall never be able to enter the kingdom of my Lord." But after two thousand years of Christianity not even once has anybody rightly interpreted the statement. Two thousand years is a long time.

The whole interpretation that has been given is that a rich person cannot go to heaven. Is there a possibility that a camel may pass through the eye of a needle? It cannot happen. How can a camel pass through the eye of a needle? But that which is not possible, Jesus says, may somehow happen; some trick may be devised, some way may be found for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle. But a rich person will not be able to gain entry past the doors of heaven. Christianity took only its superficial meaning, but that is not its true meaning.

What is meant by a rich person is, one who feels even slightly that he has something. A rich person is one who has the notion of having something. So if somebody feels he has earned virtues, he is a rich person. If somebody feels that he has been a sadhu, observing self-control, penance, he is a rich man. The meaning of a rich man is someone who says he has something about him other than himself. This is a rich man. If he says, "I performed this many prayers, observed this many fasts, have stood in the hot sun for this many days. For years I have been standing on my feet without sitting down. I did this much service to the poor, have visited this many hospitals, have done this, have done that" - if he has anything to claim then this man is that rich man.

Now listen to the statement of Jesus again: "It is possible for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle, but a rich person shall not be able to enter the kingdom of my Lord."

Who is poor? One who has nothing to claim when standing in front of God. And if one says, "I have meditation, I have virtues, I have religion"? No, one who stands empty in front of God and says, "I have nothing, only I am. Whatsoever I am is all that you have given me, there are no accumulations of my own; my very being is my everything, I have no account of even my actions..." One who stands at that door with such an emptiness is the poor person. He is the bhikkhu of Buddha, the 'poor man' of Jesus. Such a person is able to enter the kingdom of God.

So the right meaning of being poor is, one who is empty. One who is empty is able to enter. And this is why Jesus talked of a camel. The eye of a needle is very small - there is no way for a camel to pass through it. The door to the kingdom of God is even smaller than the eye of a needle - only an emptiness can pass through it. Even if there is a little of something with you, even a little of the 'I', it will get stuck. You are trying to pass through the eye of a needle along with your camel. It is not possible. Drop the camel!

But it is very difficult to give up our vehicles, because on vehicles we look taller. This is how Jesus must have thought of a camel. Whosoever is riding on their ego is riding on a camel. And everybody knows how troublesome a camel ride is. The ego ride is a camel ride. One has to bear with lots of jerks and jumps, it is continuously going up and down. However, one appears to be high.

One has to come down from the camel. Whatsoever you have, it has come from your doing - everything, whatsoever! Whatsoever you have because of your doing is limited by your mind, mind is its boundary. Nothing reaches up to the soul that has come from your doing.



Then for the first time it is experienced what these seers mean - what this Tattvamasi is, That art thou. It is for the first time indirectly experienced - indirectly! Even now it is not seen very clearly.

Even now it only feels so, it is only touched, inferred; it is not yet directly experienced. When this dharmamegha showers over one, when the mind becomes absolutely empty and the poverty becomes ultimate and the seeker becomes nothing but an emptiness within, then for the first time this supreme statement, Tattvamasi, that you are the Brahma, is experienced indirectly.

These seers of the Upanishads are very wonderful people. Still they say it is not a direct experience.

Still it is as if we are sitting with closed eyes, and the sound of somebody's footsteps is heard and we feel that somebody has come; but it is indirect. It is very dark and difficult to see, and suddenly the echo of a tuneful song spreads and we feel that somebody is singing. This is indirect knowledge.

Indirect means, so far there is no face-to-face encounter, so far it is only being sensed. The first thing that happens after the dharmamegha shower is the indirect experience of the statement, "Tattvamasi - That art thou - that which is said by the seers, the Upanishads, is right." That statement which you had heard - had listened to in shravana, contemplated in manan, assimilated in nididhyasan, attained oneness in samadhi, now on the showering of the dharmamegha samadhi is bound to be right. When you understand, "That is right," this is an indirect knowledge. But today one comes to feel it, one tastes it - that it has been said rightly.

IS ONLY REALIZED INDIRECTLY.... When this indirect knowledge becomes stabilized and when there remains not even a single ripple of the opposite of any kind anywhere, when it settles indubitably, becomes an implicit trust, THEN THE DIRECT KNOWLEDGE, LIKE A MYROBALAN FRUIT KEPT ON ONE'S OWN PALM, IS BORN.

When the indirect knowledge becomes completely stabilized, when the total being experiences and says that the seers were right in saying, "Tattvamasi - That art thou"; when there remains not a single ripple of any kind of the opposite anywhere, when it feels wholly the truth - but still indirect - then the experience of Tattvamasi becomes direct and immediate, as if someone has placed a myrobalan fruit on your palm. Such a man then does not say, "What the seers had said is right."

Such a man says, "Tattvamasi is now my statement."

With indirect knowledge, this man says, "Because the seers have said it, I can say that it is right." In direct knowledge, this man will say, "I say it is right, hence the seers also must have been right in saying so." Try to understand this difference properly.

In indirect knowledge the evidence was from the Vedas, the seers, the scriptures. That is why the journey had begun with shravana - listening. The master has said it, so it must be right - the search had begun in this trust. It is indirect knowledge as long as you feel, "The master has said it, so it must be right." And one who knows the master accepts positively that the master must have said it right.

If somebody is with Buddha and Buddha says, "Tattvamasi - That art thou," then this man cannot even conceive of any falsehood. He has no idea if this statement is right or not, but he knows Buddha, so what Buddha says becomes authentic for him. That something unauthentic can come out of Buddha is out of the question for him, he cannot conceive this.

For one who has lived near the master, has known the master, the master's words are the evidence for him. But, "The master's words are the evidence," is indirect knowledge, it has come from the other. This will be the first realization. When a disciple of Buddha attains samadhi he will bow down at the feet of Buddha with folded hands and say, "Now I know that what you had said is right."

But when this realization deepens more and he drowns more and more, the situation will change completely. Then he will say, "I know it. And now I say that it is my experience that it is right, what the master had said is also right."

Now this person himself becomes the evidence, this person himself becomes the scripture. It is such persons we have called a buddha, a tirthankara, an incarnation, a person who himself is the evidence - those who do not say that because it is written so in the Vedas it is right, but who say that because it is known by them to be right, it is right. And if the Vedas are also saying the same thing, then on the authority of their knowing, the Vedas are also right. And if the Vedas are not saying so the Vedas are wrong. Now the criterion is one's own experience. Now one's own touchstone is available.

This is the state of the siddhas, the fulfilled ones.

When samadhi enters from the indirect knowledge into the direct knowledge it becomes the state of siddhas. Only if a person having attained to such a state returns via samadhi, assimilation and contemplation up to the step of discourse, do we get the news of that world. So if we have given so much respect to the scriptures, it is because they are the words of those that were heard by the people living close to them and who had found that whatsoever this person says he can never say anything wrong. Yet such people do not ask one to believe in what they are saying.

Buddha says, "Think, reflect, contemplate, assimilate, practice, and if it becomes your own experience, only then accept it. Do not accept just because I am saying it, do not accept just because Buddha is saying it, do not accept just because the scriptures are saying it. No, you seek and search for it, and when it becomes your own experience then you will also become a witness for it.

A person who has attained to samadhi becomes a witness in favor of all the scriptures - not a knower of them but a witness for them. A pundit becomes knowledgeable of them, an enlightened one becomes the witness. A pundit says scriptures are saying the right thing because it appeals to the logic, an enlightened one says scriptures are saying the right thing because that is my experience too.

Enough for today.

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Mulla Nasrudin sitting in the street car addressed the woman standing
before him:
"You must excuse my not giving you my seat
- I am a member of The Sit Still Club."

"Certainly, Sir," the woman replied.
"And please excuse my staring - I belong to The Stand and Stare Club."

She proved it so well that Mulla Nasrudin at last got to his feet.