We are only at the second day of my primary school. It is going to be like that. Every day opens up so many things. I have not finished even the second day yet. Today I will do my best to finish it.
Life is interlinked, you cannot cut it into neat pieces. It is not a piece of cloth. You cannot cut it at all, because the moment you cut it from all its connections it is no longer the same. It becomes something dead, not breathing. I want it to take its own course, not even to direct it, because I have not directed it in the first place. It took its own course - unguided.
In fact, I hated guides and still do because they prevent you from flowing with that which is. They direct, their business is to hurry you up to the next point. Their work is to make you feel as if you have come to know. Neither they know, nor you.
Knowing only comes through living unguided, undirected. That is the way I have lived and am still living.
It's a strange fate. Even from my very childhood I knew this was not my home. It was my Nana's house, and my father and mother were far away. I had hoped that perhaps my home would be there, but no, it was just a big guest house, with my poor mother and father serving the guests continuously, for no reason - at least to me there seemed to be none.
Again I said to myself, "This is not the home I was looking for. Now where do I go? My grandfather is dead, so I cannot go back to that house."
It was his house, and without him, just the house is meaningless. If my Nani had gone back it would have meant something, ninety-nine percent at least, but she refused to go.
She said, "I went there for him, and if he is not there then there is no other reason for me to return. Of course if he comes back, I am ready, but if he is not coming back, if he cannot keep his promise, why should I bother about his house and property? - they were never mine. There is always somebody who can take care of these things. I am not meant for them. I did not go for them in the first place, and I will not return for them."
She refused so totally that I learned how to refuse... and I learned how to love. After leaving that house, we stayed a few days with my father's family. It was certainly not just a family, but more a gathering of tribes, many families; perhaps a kind of mela, a fair. But we only stayed for a few days.
That too was not my house. I stayed there just to have a look at it, then moved.
Since then, how many houses have I lived in? It is almost impossible for you to imagine that in almost fifty years of life I have been just moving houses, and doing nothing else. Of course, the grass was growing - I was moving house, and doing nothing, and the grass was growing. But the whole credit goes to "nothing," not to my moving house.
After that I moved to my Nani's house, and then to one of my uncles' - my father's sister's husband's house - where I had gone to study after matriculation. They had thought it would be only for a few days, but those days proved longer than they had thought. No hostel was ready to take me in because my records were so "beautiful." The remarks given by all my teachers, and particularly by the principal, were really worth preserving. Everybody condemned me as much as was allowed on a certificate.
I had told them to their faces, "This is not a character certificate, this is a character assassination.
Please write as a P.S. that, 'I call this document a character assassination.' Unless you write it, I will not take it." They had to.
They said to me, "You are not only mischievous but dangerous too, because now you can sue us."
I said, "Don't be afraid. In my life many will sue me in the courts; I will never sue anybody."
I have not sued anybody although I could have done it very easily, and hundreds would have been punished.
I was saying I have never had a house. Even this house, I cannot call it "my house." From the first one to the last, perhaps this is not the last, but whichever is the last, I cannot call it my house. Just to hide the fact, I call it Lao Tzu House. Lao Tzu has nothing to do with it.
And I know the man. I know that if he meets me - and someday a meeting is bound to happen - the first thing he will ask will be, "Why did you name your house 'Lao Tzu House'?" Naturally, the curiosity of a child - and nobody could be more childlike than Lao Tzu, neither Buddha, nor Jesus, nor Mohammed, and certainly not Moses. A Jew being childlike? Impossible!
A Jew is born a businessman, with a business suit, just leaving the house and going to the shop.
He comes ready-made. Moses? - certainly not. But Lao Tzu, or if you want someone even more childlike than Lao Tzu, then his disciple, Chuang Tzu.... To be a disciple of Lao Tzu one needed to be more innocent than Lao Tzu himself. There is no other way.
Confucius was just refused. In short, he was told to "Get out, and get lost forever - and remember, do not return to this place again." Not actually in these words, but that was the very essence of what Lao Tzu said to Confucius, the most scholarly man of that day. Confucius could not be accepted, but Chuang Tzu was even crazier than Lao Tzu, his Master. When Chuang Tzu came, Lao Tzu said, "Great! Are you here to be my Master? You can choose: either you can be my Master, or I can be your Master."
Chuang Tzu replied, "Forget all about that! Why can't we just be?"
And that was the way they remained. Of course Chuang Tzu was a disciple and very respectful to the Master. Nobody could compete with him, but that's the way they started, with him saying, "Can't we forget all about that rot?" - I add the word "rot" to make it exactly what it would have been. But that does not mean that he was not respectful. Even after this, Lao Tzu laughed and said, "Just great! I was waiting for you." And Chuang Tzu touched the Master's feet.
Lao Tzu said, "What!"
Chuang Tzu said, "Don't bring anything in between us. If I feel like touching your feet, then nobody can prevent me, neither you nor I. We have just to watch it happen."
And I had to watch it happen, moving from one house to another. I can remember hundreds of houses, but not a single one where I could have said, "This is my house." I was hoping, perhaps this one... that's been the way for my whole life: "Perhaps the next one."
Still, I will tell you a secret. I am still hoping to have a house somewhere, perhaps..."perhaps" is the house. My whole life I waited and waited in so many houses for the real one to come. It always seemed just around the corner, but the distance remained the same. It remained always just around the corner - I can again see it.
I know that no house is ever going to be mine; but knowing is one thing: once in a while, something which can only be called "being" covers it. I call that "all-knowing"; and in those moments, again I am searching for "the home." I said it can be named only "perhaps"; I mean that is the name of the home. It is always going to happen, but never really happens... always just about to happen.
From my Nani's house I moved to my father's sister's house. The husband, I mean my father's brother-in-law, was not very willing. Naturally, why should he be? I was in perfect agreement with him.
Even if I had been in his place I would not have been willing either. Not only unwilling, but stubbornly unwilling, because who would accept a trouble-maker unnecessarily? They were childless, so really living happily - although in fact they were very unhappy, not knowing how "happy" those who have children are. But they had no way of knowing either.
They had a beautiful bungalow, with more room than for just one couple. It was big enough to have many people in it. But they were rich people, they could afford it. It was not a problem for them to just give me a small room, although the husband was, without saying a word, unwilling. I refused to move in.
I stood outside their house with my small suitcase, and told my father's sister that, "Your husband is unwilling to have me here, and unless he is willing it would be better for me to live on the street than to be in his house. I cannot enter unless I am convinced that he will be happy to have me. And I cannot promise that I will not be a trouble to you. It is against my nature to not be in trouble. I am just helpless."
The husband was hidden behind a curtain, listening to everything. He understood one thing at least, that the boy was worth trying.
He came out and said, "I will give you a try."
I said, "Rather you learn from the very beginning that I am giving you a try."
He said, "What!"
I said, "The meaning will become clearer slowly. It enters thick skulls very slowly."
The wife was shocked. Later on she said to me, "You should not say such a thing to my husband because he can throw you out. I cannot prevent him; I am only a wife, and a childless one."
Now, you cannot understand... in India, a childless wife is thought to be a curse. She may not be responsible herself, and I know perfectly well that this fellow was responsible, because the doctors told me that he was impotent. But in India, if you are a childless woman....
First, just to be a woman in India, and then to be childless! Nothing worse can happen to anybody.
Now if a woman is childless, what can she do about it? She can go to a gynecologist... but not in India! The husband would rather marry another woman.
And the Indian law, made of course by men, allows a husband to marry another woman if the first wife remains childless. Strange, if two people are involved in conceiving a child, then naturally, two people are involved in not-conceiving too. In India, two people are involved in conceiving, but in not-conceiving... only one, the woman.
I lived in that house, and naturally, from the very beginning, a conflict, a subtle current arose between me and the husband, and it continued to grow. It erupted in many ways. First, each and every thing he said, in my presence, I immediately contradicted it, whatsoever it was. What he said was immaterial. It was not a question of right or wrong: it was him or me.
From the beginning the way he looked at me decided how I had to look at him - as an enemy. Now, Dale Carnegie may have written HOW TO WIN FRIENDS AND INFLUENCE PEOPLE, but I don't think that he really knows. He cannot. Unless you know the art of creating enemies, you cannot know the art of creating friends. In that, I am immensely fortunate.
I have created so many enemies that you can depend on it, that I must have made a few friends at least. Without creating friends, you cannot create enemies. That is a basic law. If you want friends, get ready for the enemies too. That's why many, the majority of people, decide to have neither friends nor enemies, just acquaintances. These are thought to be common-sense people; in fact
they really have uncommon sense. But I don't have that, whatsoever it is called. I created as many friends as I created enemies, in fact, in the same proportion. I can count on them both. They are both reliable.
The first, of course, was his guru. The moment he entered the house I told my father's sister, "This man is the worst I have ever seen."
She said, "Shut up. Keep quiet, he is my husband's guru."
I said, "Let him be, but tell me: am I right or not?"
She said, "Unfortunately you are, but keep quiet."
I said, "I cannot keep quiet. We have to come to a confrontation."
She said, "I knew that once this man comes there is going to be trouble."
I said, "He is not responsible. I am the trouble. The day you accepted me, remember, I told your husband, 'Remember, you can accept me, but you are accepting trouble.' Now he will know what I meant. There are things which only time can reveal - a dictionary is useless."
The moment he seated himself, pompously of course, I touched his head. Now, that was the beginning, just the beginning. My relatives all gathered and said, "What are you doing? Do you know who he is?"
I said, "I did it just to know who he is. I was trying to measure him, but he is very shallow. He does not even reach up to his feet, that's why I touched his head."
But he was all fire, jumping and crying and shouting, "This is an insult!"
I said, "I am simply quoting from your book." He had recently published a book in which he had said, "When somebody insults you, be silent, be quiet, don't be disturbed."
He then said, "What about my book?"
That helped me a little, and I then said, "Sit down in your chair, although you don't deserve it."
He said, "Again! Are you bent on insulting me?"
I said, "I am not bent on insulting anybody. I am just thinking of the chair."
He was so fat that the poor chair was somehow just managing to hold him up. The poor chair was actually crying, and making noises.
I said, "I'm just talking about the chair. I am not concerned about you, but I am concerned about the chair because later on I will have to use it. In fact it is my chair. If you don't behave, you will have to vacate it."
This was almost like setting light under a bomb. He jumped up, shouting vulgarities, and said, "I always knew the moment this child entered this house it would no longer be the same."
I said, "At least that is true. Whenever there is truth I will always agree, even with an enemy. The house is no longer the same, that is true. Go ahead, tell us why it is not the same."
He said, "Because you are godless."
In India, the word for godless is nastika, which is a beautiful word. It cannot be translated as "godless" although that is the only available translation. nastika simply means "one who does not believe." It does not say anything about the object of belief or disbelief. It is tremendously significant, at least for me. I would like to be called nastika, "one who does not believe," because only the blind ones believe. Those who can see, they need not believe.
The Indian word for the believer is astika; like "theist" it exactly gives you the sense of "the believer."
In the Indian language a theist is called astika - one who believes, the believer.
I have never been a believer, and nobody who has any intelligence can ever be a believer. Belief is for the imbeciles, the retarded, the idiots, and that lot - and it is a big company, in fact it is the majority.
He called me nastika.
I said, "I again agree, because it describes my attitude towards life. Perhaps it will always describe my attitude towards life, because to believe is to limit. To believe is to be arrogant; to believe is to believe that you know."
To be nastika simply says, "I do not know." It is exactly the English word "agnostic," "one who does not believe." Nor can he say that he does not believe; in fact he simply remains with a question mark.
A man with a question mark, that is an agnostic.
Carrying one's cross is not very difficult, particularly if it is made of gold and studded with diamonds, and hanging around your neck. It is so easy. It was difficult for Jesus. It was not a drama; it was a real cross. And Jesus was not a Christian; and the Jews were really angry. Ordinarily they are good people, and when good people get angry then something nasty is bound to happen, because all good people repress their nastiness. When it explodes, it is an atomic explosion! Jews are always nice people; that is their only fault.
If they had been a little less nice, Jesus need not have gone to the cross. But they were so nice, they had to crucify him. They were really crucifying themselves; their own son, their very blood - and not an ordinary son, their very best. Jews have not produced, neither before, nor after, anyone who even resembles, or even comes close to Jesus. They should have loved the man, but they were nice guys, that was the trouble. They could not forgive him.
I have been with many saints, so-called of course, and a few really saintly, but I will not call them saints. The word has fallen into wrong company, and become foul. I will not call Pagal Baba a saint, nor call Magga Baba a saint, nor Masta Baba a saint - just sages. Saintly certainly, but not in the ordinary way people think of saints.
My uncle's guru, Hari Baba, was thought to be a saint. I said to him, "You are neither a Baba, nor a Hari. Hari is the name of God; please change your name to something that applies to you. Baba has no reference to you either. Just look in the dictionary and find something that makes some sense."
The conflict started and continued. I will tell you about it later on.
From this house I moved to a university hostel, then to a small house when I went into service. But the house was small, and the family so good that I felt continuously embarrassed, because I could even hear what they were saying in their bed. Now, it is not right, but in the middle of one night I had to say, "Please excuse me, I can hear you."
They were, of course, very shocked. In the morning they said, "You have to leave the house."
I said, "I know. Look, I have already packed everything." I had packed. In fact I had brought a vehicle, and my things were already being loaded.
They said, "This is strange, we had not yet said anything to you."
I said, "You may not have said anything to me, but I heard everything that you were saying to your wife, in bed. The wall is so thin. It is not your fault. What can you do? But what can I do either? I tried hard not to hear you."
And do you know that even today I have to sleep with ear plugs. Those ear plugs started after that night. It was long ago. It must have been somewhere in 1958, or perhaps the end of 1957, but somewhere around there. I started using ear plugs just so as not to hear what was not meant for me. It had cost me a house, but I left immediately.
I have been continuously leaving, always packing for the new house. In a way it was good, otherwise I would have had nothing else to do, just packing and then unpacking, then again packing and unpacking; it kept me more occupied than any other Buddha before, and more harmlessly. They too were occupied, but their occupation implied others.
My occupation has always been, in a certain sense, personal. Even if thousands of people are with me it is still a one to one relationship between you and me. It is not an organization, and it can never be. Certainly for managerial purposes it has to function as an organization, but as far as my sannyasins are concerned, each single sannyasin is related to me, and only to me, not via anybody else.
I am a very unoccupied man. I cannot say unemployed, hence I have used the word "unoccupied,"
because I rejoice in it. I am not applying for any employment. I am finished with all employment. I am just enjoying. But to enjoy a certain milieu is needed; that's what I am creating.
The whole of my life I have been creating it, gradually, in steps. I have spoken again and again about the new commune. It is just to remind myself, not you, so that I don't forget the new commune.
Because the moment that I forget it, I may not wake up the next morning.
Gudia will wait.... You will run; yes, I have seen you coming, almost running. You will wait, but I will not be coming because I will have lost the only small thread with which I was holding myself.
And this was going on and on. From Gadarwara I moved to Jabalpur. In Jabalpur I changed houses so many times that everybody wondered if it was my hobby, changing houses.
I said, "Yes, it helps you to become acquainted with so many people in different localities, and I love to be acquainted."
They said, "It is a strange hobby, and very difficult too. Only twenty days have passed and you are moving again."
And from Jabalpur finally to Bombay.... In Bombay too I moved from one locality to another. This went on until I ended it here, in Poona. Nobody knows where next.
It started with my school, and it is just the second day. Life is so multidimensional. When I say so multidimensional, it may look absurd because just multidimensional covers it. Why call it so multidimensional? Life is multi-multidimensional.
You must be feeling hungry, and hungry ghosts are dangerous people. Just two minutes for me....
Just end it now.