The very first thing to be understood in this connection is that complete harmony in the first, second and third bodies is absolutely essential. If there is no harmonious connection between these three bodies kundalini awak-ening can prove harmful. There are a few things which are very necessary in order to bring about this harmony, this relationship.
Firstly, as long as we are unaware and insensitive towards the physical body, this body cannot establish harmony with other bodies. By insensitiveness I mean we are not fully aware of the body.
When we walk we are hardly conscious of the fact that we are walking. When we stand we are hardly conscious of the fact that we are standing. When we eat we are hardly conscious of the fact that we are eating. Whatever activity we do with the body we do in unawareness, like a somnambulist. If we are unaware about this body we must be doubly unaware towards the other inner bodies, because they are more subtle. If we are unaware of this gross body which is visible to the eye, the question of being aware of the invisible subtle bodies does not arise. It is impossible to be aware of them.
Harmony cannot be without awareness. Harmony is possible only in a state of awareness. In a state of unawareness all harmony is broken.
So the first thing is to be aware of the body. With whatever small action the body performs remembering is absolutely necessary. There should be mindfulness with all that we do. As Buddha used to say, "When you walk along the road be aware that you are walking. When you lift the right leg your mind should be conscious of the fact that the right leg has been lifted. When you sleep in the night you should know when you change sides."
There is an incident in the life of Buddha from when he was still only a seeker. He was passing through a village with a companion. They were both talking when a fly sat on Buddha's neck. He was in the midst of discussion when he lifted his hand to drive the fly away. It flew away - but Buddha stopped suddenly. "I have committed a serious error," Buddha told his companion. Then he lifted his hand again in the act of driving away the fly.
The fellow seeker exclaimed in surprise, "What is this you are doing? The fly is no longer there."
Buddha replied, "Now I am driving the fly away as I should have. Now I am fully aware of what I am doing. Now as the hand lifts, I am fully aware that it is being lifted and that it is going in the direction of my neck to drive the fly away. That time I was talking to you; hence my action was mechanical. I committed a sin against my body."
If we begin to do all our physical acts with full awareness, then the identification with the physical becomes broken. If you lift one hand upward with full attention you will feel yourself apart from the hand - because the one who lifts is different from that which is lifted. The feeling of being apart from the physical body is the beginning of the awareness of the etheric body. Then, as I said before, you should be fully aware towards this second body also.
Suppose there is an orchestra playing. Many types of instruments are played in an orchestra. If there is a man in the audience who has never heard music he will only hear the drums because this is the instrument that makes the loudest sound; he will not be able to catch the softer notes of other instruments. But if he begins to become aware of the music he will slowly catch the softer notes. As his awareness increases he will begin to catch the most delicate subtle notes. Then as his awareness increases further he will not only catch the notes but he will become aware of the gap between two notes - the silence between two notes. Then he will have grasped the music completely. The interval, the gap, is the last thing to grasp. Then it can be said that his grasp of music is complete.
The interval, the silence between the two notes, has its own meaning. In fact, the notes are meant only to accentuate this silence. How much this silence is brought into function is the real thing in music.
If you have seen Japanese or Chinese paintings you must have been surprised to note that the painting is always in one corner; the rest of the canvas is left empty. Nowhere else in the world do we find this method of painting, because nowhere else has the artist painted with such meditativeness.
In fact, nowhere except in China and Japan have meditators taken up painting. If you ask this artist why he has wasted such a big canvas for such a small painting when he could have easily used a canvas one eighth of its size, he will reply that in order to bring out the empty space of seven eighths of the canvas he specifically worked on the remaining part. In reality, this is the ratio.
Ordinarily when a tree standing in an open space is painted the whole canvas is taken up. Actually the tree should be in one little corner, as in comparison to the vast skies the tree is very insignificant.
This is the actual ratio. When the tree stands in its right spatial proportion on the canvas, then only can it be alive. Thus, all your paintings are out of proportion. If a meditator produces music there will be less sound and more silence in it - because the notes are very small compared to the silence that joins them. The sounds have only one use - to give a hint of the emptiness, the silence, and then to depart. The deeper you move in music, the deeper will become your sense of silence.
The purpose of our physical body is only that it gives us a perception of our more subtle bodies, but we never use it to this end. We remain fixed only at the physical body because of our sleepy identification with it. We are asleep; and thus we live in the body in a very unconscious manner.
If you become aware of each and every action of this body you will begin to feel the presence of the second body. The second body too has its own activity, but you will not know the etheric until you have become fully aware of the activities of the physical body, as the etheric is more subtle. If you are fully aware of the activities of the physical body you will begin to feel the movements of the second body. Then you will be surprised that there are etheric vibrations within you that are active all the time.
A man becomes angry. Anger is born in the etheric body but it manifests in the first body. Basically, anger is the activity of the second body; the first body is used as a medium for expression. Therefore, you can stop anger from reaching the first body if you wish. This is what is done in repression.
Suppose I am filled with anger: I feel like beating you with a stick but I can stop myself. Beating is an activity of the first plane. Basically, there is anger but now there is no manifestation of anger. I can withhold myself from the act of beating; I can even smile at you if I wish. But within anger has spread throughout my second body. So in repression what happens is that we hold back on the plane of manifestation, but it is already present at its original source.
When you begin to be aware of the processes of the physical body you will begin to understand the movements of love, anger and hatred within you; you will become aware of their presence.
Until you grasp the movements of these emotions that rise from the second body, all you can do is repress them. You cannot be free from them because you only become aware of them when they have reached the first body - and not even then many times: often you only become aware of them when they have reached another person's body. We are so insensitive that not until your slap reaches someone's cheek do you realize what you have done. After the slap you come to know that something has happened.
All emotions rise from the etheric body. Therefore, I also call the second, etheric body the emotional body. It has its own momentum; it has its own movements for anger, love, hatred, restlessness. You will come to know these vibrations.
In fear the etheric body shrinks. The process of shrinking we feel in fear does not belong to the first body. The first body remains just the same; there is no change in it whatsoever. But the effect of this contraction of the etheric body becomes evident in the person's walk, in the way he sits. He looks subdued all the time. He will not stand straight. When he speaks he will stammer. His legs will shake when he walks; his hands will tremble when he writes.
Now anyone can recognize the difference between the handwriting of a man and a woman; it is not at all difficult. A woman's handwriting will never be straight. No matter how symmetrical and well formed, there will always be signs of trembling in it. This is a very feminine characteristic and it comes from a woman's body. A woman is fearful all the time; her personality has become stricken with fear. So without any difficulty one can recognize the handwriting of a woman from a man's.
Also, we can find out how fearful a man is from his handwriting. There is no difference between the fingers of a man or a woman, nor in the way they hold the pen. As far as the first body goes there is no difference between the two, but on the plane of the second body the woman is fearful.
Even the contemporary woman has not been able to be fearless within. Still our society, our culture and the state of our thinking is such that we have not been able to make the woman fearless. She is fearful all the time and the vibrations of her fear spread throughout her personality. The degree of fearlessness or fearfulness in men can also be gauged from their handwriting. The state of fear is on the plane of the etheric.
I have told you to be aware of each happening in the gross body, but you should likewise be aware of the processes of the etheric body. When you are in love you feel as if you have expanded. The freedom experienced in love is because of this expansion. Now there is someone before whom you need not be fearful. There is no cause for fear near a person you love. Really speaking, to love means to be free of fear in the presence of a person before whom one can blossom to one's full capacity, no matter what one is. Therefore, a feeling of expansion is experienced in moments of love. The physical body remains the same, but the etheric body within flowers and expands.
In meditation there are always experiences of etheric body. One meditator may feel that his body has expanded - so much so that it has filled the room. However, his physical body remains the same.
When he opens his eyes he is shocked: the body is just the same. But the feeling of the experience follows him and makes him realize that what he had felt was not false. The experience was clear - that he had filled the whole room. This is a happening of the etheric body; the possibilities of its expansion are limitless. It also expands and contracts according to the emotions. It can expand so that it can fill the earth; it can contract so that there is enough place for it in an atom.
So you will start noticing the movements of the etheric body - its expansions and contractions, in which situations it contracts and in which situations it expands. If the meditator begins to live in those processes in which it expands a harmony will be created. If he begins to live in the conditions that make it shrink harmony will not be established between the two bodies. Expansion is its innate nature. When it has expanded to its full capacity, when it blossoms fully, it is connected to the first body by a bridge. When it becomes fearful and shrinks, all its contacts with the first body break and it lies separate in a corner.
There are other processes of the second body which can be known by other methods. For instance, you see a man perfectly healthy, perfectly normal. Now if someone tells him he has been given a death sentence he will turn pale at once. No change has taken place in his first body but there is an immediate change in his etheric body. His etheric body is ready to leave the physical body. If the owner of a house comes to know that he has to vacate the house immediately all joyfulness and lightness will disappear; everything will be disturbed. The second body has broken its connections with the first, in a sense. The execution is to take place after some time or maybe not at all, but his connection with the first body is broken.
A man attacks you with a gun or a lion attacks you in the jungle: even though nothing has yet happened to the physical body, the etheric body promptly makes arrangements to leave it and a great distance is created between the two. So you can observe the workings of the second body in a subtle way, and this can be done without difficulty. The difficulty lies in this, that we fail to observe the processes of the physical also. If we do so we will start feeling the movements of the second body. When you have a clear knowledge of the working of both this very fact will create a harmony between the two.
Then there is the third body - the astral body. Its movements are definitely more subtle - more subtle than fear, anger, love and hatred. It is difficult to grasp its movements unless the knowledge of the second body is complete. It is difficult even to understand the third body from the first body because the gap is now greater; we are unconscious on the first plane. The second body is nearer the first so we can understand a few things about it. It is just as if the second body is our neighbor:
sometimes we hear the clatter of pots or the crying of a child next door. But the third body is the neighbor's neighbor from whose house we do not hear any sound.
The phenomenon of the third body is yet more subtle. It can only be grasped if we begin to grasp the emotions fully.
When emotions get condensed they become action. And astral vibes are subtler than the waves of emotions. That is why I will not know that you are angry with me unless you show your anger, because I can only see it when it becomes an action. But you can see it well in advance. You can feel it rising in your etheric body. Now this anger that has risen has its own atoms that come from the etheric body. If these atoms do not arise you cannot be angry.
You can call the astral body a collection of vibrations. You will be able to understand the different conditions of this body better with an example. We can see water and we can see hydrogen and oxygen separately: there is no trace of water in oxygen; there is no trace of oxygen in water. Neither oxygen nor hydrogen has any property of water, but these two combine to form water: each has a hidden quality that manifests when they combine. Anger and love are not seen in the astral body; nor are hatred or fear. But they have vibrations which become manifested when combined with the second body. So when you are completely aware of the second body, when you are completely alert about your anger, then you will know that some reactions have taken place before the advent of anger. In other words, anger is not the beginning. It is the next part of a happening that has already taken place elsewhere.
A bubble rises from the bottom of a lake and begins to travel upwards. When it rises from the sand at the bottom of the lake we cannot see it. When it reaches half the depth of the lake it is still invisible.
When it is a short distance from the surface it begins to be visible although it is very small. Then it begins to get bigger and bigger as it reaches the surface, because the weight and pressure of water decreases as it comes up. Also it becomes more clear to our view. At the lower depths the pressure of water kept it small, but as it travels upwards the pressure becomes less and less until it reaches its full size at the surface. But where it reaches its full dimension it also bursts.
So it has traveled a long way. There were places where we could not see it, but it was there all the same hidden under the sand. Then it arose from there, but it was still invisible because the water pressed it down. Then it came nearer the surface from where we could see it although it was still very small. Then it swam to the surface where we could see its totality - but then it burst.
So the bubble of anger develops fully and bursts by the time it reaches the first body. When it comes to the surface it reveals itself. You can stop it at the second body if you so desire but that would be suppression. If you look into your etheric body you will be surprised to find that it has already traveled some distance. But in its place of origin it is in the form of energy vibrations.
As I told you before there are no different types of matter; rather, there are different combinations of the same energy particles. Coal and diamond are the same: the difference is only in the combination of energy particles. If you break any matter into its components, ultimately what remains is electrical energy. The different combinations of these energy vibes bring about formations of different substances. All these substances are different on the surface; deep down they are all one.
If you wake up to the etheric body and follow the emotions to their origin you will suddenly find yourself in the astral body. There you will find that anger is not anger, forgiveness is not forgiveness; the same energy vibrates in them both. The energy in the vibrations of love and hatred are the same. The difference is only in the nature of the vibrations.
When love changes into hatred and hatred changes into love, we wonder how two directly opposite feelings change into one another. For example, a man whom I called my friend until yesterday has become my enemy today. Then I console myself that perhaps I was mistaken - that he was never my friend, because how can a friend turn into an enemy? The energy vibrating in friendship and enmity is the same; the difference is only in the nature of vibrations. The difference is in the structure of the waves. What we call love is love in the morning and hatred in the evening. At noon there is love, and this changes into hatred by evening. It is a difficult situation. The one we love in the morning we hate by evening.
Freud was under the impression that we love those we hate and we hate those we love. The reason he put forward was correct to some extent, but since he had no knowledge of the other bodies of man he could not go further with his investigations. The reason he puts forward is very superficial. He says that the relationship with the mother is the first relationship the child experiences: the mother is the first object he loves. When the mother gives him all her care and attention he loves her, and he hates the same mother when she scolds or punishes him. So two feelings fill his mind towards the same object - the mother: he hates her as well as loves her. Sometimes he feels like murdering her and at other times he feels that he cannot live without her - that she is his every breath. This dual thinking makes the mother his first object of love and hate. Thus, later in life, because of this association in his mind, whomsoever he loves he will also hate.
This is a very superficial finding. The bubble has been caught on the surface where it is about to burst. If a child can love and hate his mother also, it means that the difference between love and hate is quantitative and not qualitative. Love and hatred cannot manifest together at the same time.
If both are present, this can be possible only on one condition - that they are convertible: their waves can oscillate from one to the other. So the meditator only comes to know why the mind is filled with conflicting emotions in the third body. A man comes and touches my feet in the morning and hails me as the blessed one - beloved master. The same man comes in the evening, abuses me and says, "This man is the devil himself." The next morning he again comes and addresses me as beloved master and touches my feet. Then others come and advise me not to pay any attention to his words as sometimes he calls me God and sometimes the devil.
I say that he is the only one fit to be relied upon. The man who speaks is not to be blamed. He is not making conflicting statements; rather, his statements belong to the same spectrum. They are rungs of the same ladder, the difference being only quantitative. In fact, as soon as he says "Beloved Master" he catches hold of one part.
The mind is made up of pairs of opposites, so where will the second part go? It will lie under the first waiting for it to exhaust itself. The first gets tired after all, because how long can this man keep on saying "Beloved Master"? When he is tired the second part comes up which prompts him to say, "This man is the devil himself." Now these are not two things; they are one.
Until the time comes when we are able to understand that all our conflicting emotions are forms of the same energy, we will not be able to solve man's problems. The greatest problem that confronts us is that when we love we hate also. We are ready to kill the person without whom we cannot live.
He who is our friend is our enemy also deep within. This is our greatest problem, and wherever there are relationships this poses a big question. One thing to be well understood is that the underlying energy in the different emotions is the same; there is no difference whatsoever.
Ordinarily we look upon light and darkness as two opposite things, which is wrong. In scientific terms, darkness is the minimum state of light. If we try we will find light in darkness too. There is no dark-ness where light is not. It is a different matter if our instruments of investigation fail to recognize it. Our eyes may be incapable of discerning the light in the darkness, but light and darkness are on the same plane, they are different forms and vibrations of the one energy.
It will be easier to understand it in another way: we believe light and darkness to be absolutely opposed to one another, but we do not believe cold and heat to be opposed to each other to that extent. It would be interesting to carry out an experiment. Let one of your hands be heated over a stove and keep the other on ice. Now put both hands in a bucket of water at room temperature. You will find it difficult to decide whether the water is hot or cold. One hand will say it is hot and the other will say it is cold. You will be at a loss to decide because both hands are yours. In fact, cold and heat are not two different things; they are relative experiences.
If we call something cold it only means that we are warmer. That we call it warm only means we are colder: we are only expressing the quantitative difference of temperature between that object and ourselves - nothing else. There is nothing hot and nothing cold - or, you can say that that which is hot is cold also. In fact, hot and cold are misleading terms. We should speak in terms of the temperature; that is the right expression. The scientist also does not use the words hot and cold.
He says that the temperature of a thing is so many degrees. Hot and cold are poetic words. They are dangerous for science because they convey nothing.
If a man enters a room and says it is cold we cannot know what he means. It is possible that this man has fever and the room feels cold to him though it is not at all cold. Therefore, until this man knows the condition of his body temperature his assessment of the temperature of the room is meaningless. So we can say, "Do not comment upon whether the room is hot or cold. Just say what is the temperature of the room." The degree gives no indication of hot or cold; it only informs you what the temperature is. If the temperature is less than your body temperature you will feel cold; if it is more you will feel hot. The same is true for light and darkness: it depends upon our ability to see.
The night seems dark to us but not to the owl. The owl finds the day very dark. It must be wondering, "How strange a creature man is! He keeps awake in the night." Generally man considers the owl foolish, but he does not know what the owl's opinion of him is. For the owl the day is the night and it is night when it is day. He must be wondering at the foolishness of man! He thinks, "There are many wise men among human beings, yet they remain awake at night and when it is day they go to sleep. When it is the real time to be up and active these poor creatures go to sleep." The owl's eyes are capable of seeing at night. Because it can see at night the night is not dark for it.
The vibrations of love and hate are like those of darkness and light: they have their own ratio. So when you begin to be aware of the third plane you will be in a strange condition: it will no longer be a matter of your own choice whether to love or to hate. Now you will know that these are two names of the same thing.
If you choose one you automatically choose the other; you cannot escape the second choice. So if you ask for love from a man of the third plane he will ask if you are prepared for hatred also. You will of course say, "No, I want love only. Please give me love!" He will reply that it is not possible because love is one form of the vibration of hate. In fact, love is the form that is pleasing to you, whereas hate is that form of the same vibrations which is displeasing to you.
So the man who awakes to the third plane begins to be liberated from the pairs of opposites. He will come to know for the first time that what he had looked upon as two opposites are one and the same. Two opposite branches became part of the same trunk of the tree. Then he will laugh at his stupidity for trying to destroy one in order to keep the other. But then he did not know that this was impossible and that deep down the tree was the same. But only after awakening to the second plane can the third plane be known, because the third body has very subtle vibrations. There, there are no emotions - only vibrations.
If you come to understand the vibrations of the third body you will begin to have a unique experience.
Then you will be able to tell directly on seeing a person what vibrations surround him. Because you are not aware of your own vibrations it is not possible for you to recognize those of another person; otherwise, the vibrations emanating from the third body are gathered around every person's head.
The halo depicted in pictures of Buddha, Mahavira, Rama and Krishna is the aura seen around their heads. These have special colors which have been detected. If you have the right experience of the third body you will begin to see these colors. When you begin to see these colors you will see not only your own but those of others as well.
In fact, the deeper we begin to see ourselves, the deeper we begin to see inside others also - to the same extent. Because we know only our own physical body we know only the physical bodies of others. The day we come to know our own etheric body we will begin to be aware of the etheric bodies in others.
Before you become angry you can know well in advance that you are going to be angry. Before you express love it can be easily predicted that you are making preparations for love. So what we call getting to know the feelings of others is not such a great thing after all. By becoming aware of one's own emotional body it becomes easy to grasp the feelings of others, because we begin to see all its variations. By awakening into the third plane things become very clear, because then we can see the colors of the personality also.
The colors of the clothes of sadhus and sannyasins were chosen by the color seen from the third body. The choice was different in each case according to which body was emphasized. For instance, Buddha chose yellow because he stressed the seventh body. The aura around the person who has attained to the seventh plane is yellow; therefore, Buddha chose the color yellow for his bhikkhus.
It was because of this color that Buddhist bhikkhus found it difficult to remain in India. The yellow color is identified with death. And in fact, it is the color of death, because the seventh plane is the plane of ultimate death. So the yellow color is connected with death deep within us.
The orange color gives the feeling of life. Therefore, orange-robed sannyasins looked more attractive than the yellow-robed ones; they appeared alive. This color is the color of blood and the color of the aura of the sixth body: it is the color of the rising sun.
The Jainas chose white, which is the color of the fifth body - the spiritual body. The Jainas insist on leaving God alone - on leaving God out of discussion and on leaving nirvana out of discussion - because scientific discussions are possible only up to the fifth body. Mahavira was a scientifically- minded man. Therefore, he talked about matters as far as they could be solved mathematically; beyond that he refused to talk. He did not wish to talk where his words were liable to err so he refused to elaborate on mysticism. Mahavira said that we will not talk about it; let us move in and experience it. So he did not talk of the planes after the fifth. This is why Mahavira chose white; it is the color of the fifth plane.
From the third plane you will start seeing colors which are due to the effect of the subtle vibrations within. In the very near future it will be possible to photograph them. If they can be seen by the naked eye it follows that they cannot escape the eye of the camera for long. Then we will develop a wonderful ability to assess people and their character.
There is a German thinker by the name of Luschev who has studied the effect of color on millions of people. Many hospitals in Europe and America are using his experiments. The color you choose deeply tells about your personality. A man with a particular disease prefers a particular color; a healthy person chooses quite another color; a tranquil man prefers yet another color; an ambitious man quite another than a nonambitious person. With your choice you give a hint of what is happening within your third body. Now it is an interesting fact that if the color that emanates from your third body is grasped, and if your preference of color is then tested, it will turn out to be the same color: you will choose a color similar to the color emanating from your third body.
Colors have wonderful meanings and uses. It was not known previously that colors could be so meaningful that they can even outwardly convey about your personality. Also, it was not known that the effect of colors can touch your inner personality. You cannot escape from them. For instance, the color red: it is always connected with revolution. It is the color of anger and it is difficult to escape from it. Therefore, the revolutionaries carried red flags. There is an aura of red around a wrathful mind. It is the color of blood, the color of murder, the color of anger and of destruction.
It is very interesting that if everything in the room were colored red the blood pressure of all of you sitting here would rise. If a man lives continuously with the color red his blood pressure can never be normal. The color blue causes the blood pressure to fall: it is the color of the skies and of supreme tranquility. If there is blue all around you your blood pressure will fall.
Leave aside man: if we fill water in a blue bottle and keep it in the sun the chemical composition of the water will change. The water absorbs the blue color which then changes its composition. This water has an effect on man's blood pressure. Similarly, if we fill a yellow bottle with water and put it in the sun its characteristics will be different. The water in the blue bottle will remain fresh for days whereas the water in the yellow bottle will turn foul at once. The yellow color is the color of death and it disintegrates things.
You will begin to see the circles of all these colors around you. This will be on the third plane.
When you are aware of these three bodies that very awareness will bring about a harmony between them. Then shaktipat of any kind will not be able to bring harmful results. The energy of shaktipat will enter your fourth body through the harmonious layers of the first three bodies; this will be the highway along which it will travel. If this path is not ready there can be many dangers. For this reason I said that the first three bodies should be strong and fit; then only growth happens smoothly.
We will have to understand some things from afar. I talked to you about the seven bodies. Keeping these in mind, we can also divide existence into seven dimensions. In the entire existence, all the seven bodies are forever present. Awake or asleep, active or dormant, ugly or beautiful, they are always there. Take a piece of metal - say a piece of iron: all the seven bodies are present in it but all the seven are asleep; all the seven are dormant, nonactive. Therefore, a piece of iron looks dead.
Take a plant: its first body has become active, its physical body; therefore, we get the first glimpse of life in plants.
Then there is the animal: his second body has become activated. Movement which does not exist in plants starts in animals. The plant puts down its roots and stays in one place always. It is not mobile because for that the second body must be activated - the etheric body from which all movements come. If only the physical body is awakened it will be immobile, fixed. The plant is a fixed animal.
There are some plants that move a little: that is a state between plant and animal. In many muddy areas of Africa there are certain plants that slide a distance of twenty to twenty-five feet in a year.
By means of their roots they can clutch the ground and let it go and thus perform movement. This is the revolutionary link between the plant and the animal.
The second body has also begun to work in the animal. This does not mean that the second body has reached awareness; it only means it has become activated. The animal has no knowledge of it. Because of the second body being activated it experiences anger, it can express love, it can run, defend itself, it experiences fear, it can attack or hide and it can move.
In man the third, astral body is activated. Therefore, not only does he move bodily but also with the mind: he can travel with his mind. He travels in the past as well as in the future. There is no future for the animal, and for this reason it is never worried, never tense, because all anxiety is of the future. What will happen tomorrow is our greatest worry. But for animals there is no tomorrow; today is everything for them. Even today does not exist for them in a way, because what does today mean to one for whom tomorrow has no meaning? What is, is.
In man a more subtle movement has taken birth - the movement of the mind. It comes from the third, astral body. Now he can think of the future with the help of the mind. He can also worry about what will be after death - where he will go, where he will not go. He also reflects upon where he was before birth.
The fourth body is active in a few persons, not in all. If a person dies after his fourth body is activated he is born on the plane of the devas, the gods, where there are many possibilities for the activation of the fourth body. If the third body remains active, only then does a man remain as a man. From the fourth body birth on higher planes begins.
With the fourth there will be a difference that must be understood. If the fourth body is activated there is less possibility of acquiring a physical body again and more possibility of a bodiless being.
But as I said, remember the difference between activation and consciousness. If the fourth body is merely activated and one is not conscious we call it the plane of the pretas, evil spirits; if it is activated as well as fully conscious we call it the plane of the devas, godly spirits. This is the only difference between pretas and devas. An evil spirit is not aware that its fourth body is activated whereas a godly one is. Therefore, the preta can cause a great deal of harm both to itself and to others with the activity of its fourth body, because unconsciousness can only bring harm. The deva will be the cause of many good deeds both to itself and to others, because awareness can only be beneficial.
He whose fifth body becomes active goes beyond the existence of devas. The fifth is the spiritual body. On the fifth plane activation and awareness are one and the same. No one can reach the fifth plane without awareness; therefore, activation and awareness take place simultaneously here. You can reach up to the fourth without awareness also. If you awaken the journey will take a different turn: it will go toward the deva plane, the plane of the gods. If you go on being unaware your journey will be in the realm of the evil spirits.
On the fifth plane activation and awareness are there simultaneously, because this is the spiritual body and unawareness is meaningless so far as self is concerned. Atman means consciousness; therefore, the other name of atman is consciousness. Here unconsciousness has no meaning.
So from the fifth body activation and awareness are one and the same thing, but before that the two ways are separate. The difference between male and female is there until the fourth; the difference between sleeping and waking is there until the fourth. As a matter of fact, duality and conflict are there only up to the fourth body. From the fifth the nondual begins - the undivided. Unity starts from the fifth. Before this there is diversity, difference. The potential of the fifth comes neither from the plane of pretas nor from the plane of the devas. This should be understood.
The fifth body is not possible for pretas because theirs is an unconscious existence. They do not have that body which is necessary for awareness, and they do not have the first body which is the first step toward awareness. For this reason the preta has to return to a human form. Therefore, the human existence is in a sense at a crossroads. The plane of the devas is above it but not beyond it, because to go beyond it is necessary to come back to the human existence. The preta has to return in order to break its unawareness, because for this a human form is absolutely necessary. The devas have to return, because in their existence there is no suffering whatsoever. Actually it is an awakened existence. However, in such an existence there cannot be the pain and suffering that give birth to that longing for meditation. Where there is no suffering there is no thought of transformation or of attainment.
So the realm of devas is a static existence where there is no progress. This is a peculiarity of happiness: it blocks all further progress. In pain and suffering there is a longing for growth. Suffering stimulates us to find ways and means of freedom from pain and sorrow. In happiness all seeking stops. So this is indeed a very strange state of affairs, and people usually cannot understand this.
In the lives of Mahavira and Buddha there are descriptions of devas coming to them in order to be taught, but these are very exceptional happenings. It is strange that devas should come to human beings because it is an existence above the human existence. It seems strange but it is not, because the existence in heaven is a static existence from where there is no growth. If you wish to go ahead then just as you take a step back before you jump you have to step back to the human existence and then take a jump.
Happiness is peculiar in the sense that there is no further movement. Another thing: happiness becomes boring. There is no other factor that can cause as much boredom as happiness.
Unhappiness is not boring; an unhappy mind is never bored. Therefore, an unhappy man is never discontented, nor is a society where pain and misery prevails. It is only the happy person or the happy community that is discontented. India is not as discontented as America. The reason is only this, that they are affluent and happy whereas we are poor and miserable. There is nothing to look forward to in America and there is no suffering to goad them to further growth. Besides, happiness is repetitive: the same forms of pleasure and enjoyment over and over again become meaningless.
So the realm of devas is the peak of boredom. There is no place more boring in the universe, and there is so much boredom there. But it takes time for the boredom to develop. Besides, it depends upon the sensitivity of the individual. The more sensitive a person the sooner he will get bored; the less sensitive a person the longer it will take. It is also possible that he may not get bored at all. The buffalo eats the same grass every day and is not tired of it.
Sensitivity is very rare. The boredom will be proportionate to the sensitivity of the person. Sensitivity always looks for the new: it seeks more and more that is new day by day. Sensitiveness is a kind of restlessness, and this in turn is a kind of aliveness. So the realm of the devas is a kind of dead existence, as is also is the realm of the pretas. But the realm of devas is more dead, because in the world of the pretas there is a lot of suffering and ways to inflict suffering as well as the pleasure of making oneself and others suffer. There are enough provisions for restlessness there, so there is no boredom at all.
The realm of devas is very peaceful: there is no disturbance of any sort. So ultimately the return from the realm of devas can only be out of boredom. Remember, it is above human life; sensitivity increases there. The pleasure that does not become boring to us over the years in the bodily life becomes stale and boring once it is enjoyed in the realm of devas.
This is why it is said in the Puranas that the gods yearn to be born as human beings. Now this seems very surprising because here on earth we long to go to the realm of the devas. There are even stories where some deva descends on earth to fall in love with a woman. These stories are indications of the state of mind. They show that in that realm there is happiness, but it is boring because there is just pleasure and enjoyment without a trace of pain or sorrow. Then it becomes boring. If one is given a choice between infinite happiness without a moment of sorrow and infinite sorrow and suffering, the wise man will choose the latter. We have to return from the realm of the devas; we also have to return from the realm of the pretas.
Human existence is at the crossroads: all journeys are possible from it. The man who attains the fifth body, however, has not to go anywhere. He enters a state in which there is no longer any birth through the womb; he is not reborn through the womb of any mother.
He who attains the self has ended his journey in a sense. The state in the fifth body is a state of liberation. But if he feels satisfied within himself, he can stop at this plane for an infinite number of ages, because here there is neither pain nor pleasure, neither bondage nor suffering. There is only one's own being - not the universal being, the all. So a person can go on living in this state for an infinite number of ages until a time comes when he grows curious to know the all.
The seed of inquiry is within us; therefore, it arises. If the meditator nurtures the curiosity of knowing the all from the very beginning, he can escape the danger of getting stuck in the fifth body.
So if you know the full science of the seven bodies you will know that the inquiry should be complete and ultimate from the very beginning. If you start with a goal of stopping midway, then when you reach the fifth you will feel you have come to the end, to your destination, and you will miss the point.
So the man of the fifth body has not to take birth but he is bound within himself: he breaks away from everyone but remains bound to himself. He is rid of the ego but not of the feeling of "I am." Ego is a claim against others.
Understand this well: When I say 'I' it is to dominate some 'you'. Therefore, when the I succeeds in dominating a you the ego feels victorious. When it is dominated by the I of another it is miserable.
The I is always an effort to overpower the you. The ego exists always in contrast to the other.
Here at the fifth the other is no more and there is no longer any competition with it. This state of I-ness, asmita, is self-contained. This is the only difference between ego and asmita. Now I have nothing to do with you; there is no claim of I, but still there is my being. I no longer need to stand against the other, but "I am" although there is no you to be compared with.
For this reason I said ego will say 'I' and the being will say 'am'. This will be the difference. In "I am"
there are two concepts: the I is the ego and the am, the being.
The feeling of I-ness is not against anyone; it is in favor of itself. The feeling is one of "I am," so let there be no one else in the world. Let there be a third world war and let all perish but I should remain. So although there will be no ego in me the feeling of I-ness will still be: I know that I am, even though I will not say I to others, because for me there is no longer any you left to whom I can say it. So when you are absolutely alone and there is no other, then too you are - in a sense of being existent.
The ego disappears in the fifth body and thus the strongest link in the chain of bondage falls. But the feeling of I-ness remains - free, independent, boundless and without any attachments. But the I-ness has its own limits. All other boundaries fade away except the boundary of I-ness. At the sixth this too drops or is transcended. The sixth is the cosmic body.
The question of being born in a womb ends with the fifth body, but birth still must be taken. This difference should be properly understood. One birth is from within the mother's womb and one birth is from within oneself. This is why in this country we call the brahmin, dwij - twiceborn. This term was actually used for the brahma gyani, one who knows the Brahman - the cosmic reality. To call an unenlightened person a brahmin is unnecessary. When a second birth of an entirely different kind was gone through a person was called dwij - twiceborn; an enlightened person was called a brahmin.
So one birth is from the womb of another and one is from one's own self. Once the fifth body is attained you cannot be born to another. Now you will have to be born through the fifth body into the sixth body. This is your journey, your own inner pregnancy, your own inner birth. Now there is no connection with an external womb or with any external means of creation. Now you have no father or mother; you are the father, you are the mother, and you are the child. This is entirely an individual journey. So when a person enters the sixth body through the fifth he can be called twiceborn and not before that. He is born without the external means of creation, without the help of an external womb.
One rishi of the Upanishads prays, "Oh Lord, open the golden covers of this inner womb within which the reality is hidden." The covers are definitely of gold. They are such that we do not want to throw them aside; they are such that we are eager to keep them. The I-ness is the most priceless cover that is over us. We ourselves will not want to part from it and there is no external obstruction to stop us. The cover itself is so lovable that we cannot leave it. Therefore, the rishi says, "Remove the golden covers and open the womb that makes a person twiceborn."
So Brahma gyanis were called twiceborn, and by Brahma gyani is meant one who has attained the sixth body. From the fifth to the sixth the journey is one of being twiceborn. The womb is different, the mode of being born is different. Now everything is wombless: the womb is one's own, and we are selfborn now.
From the fifth to the sixth there is a birth and from the sixth to the seventh there is a death. Therefore, one who has undergone the latter is not referred to as twiceborn; there is no meaning in it. Do you understand? It is easy to follow now.
From the fifth to the sixth there is birth through oneself; from the sixth to the seventh there is death through oneself. We were born through others - through the bodies of others - and the death that follows is also of others. This I shall explain.
If your birth is from another, how can your death be your own? How can this be? The two ends will be unrelated. If another gives me my birth, then death cannot be mine. When birth comes from another death too is from another. The difference is this, that first I appear through one womb and the second time I enter into another womb - but I am not aware. When I came into this birth it was apparent, but now my going is not apparent. Death precedes birth: you had died somewhere before you were born somewhere. Birth is apparent, but of death you are not aware.
Now you were born through a mother and father: you obtained a body, an apparatus that will run for seventy to a hundred years. After a hundred years this instrument will not work. The day it will stop working is predestined from the moment of birth. It is not so important when it will fall; what is important is that it will fall. With birth it is decided that you will die. The womb which brought you your birth brought along your death also. You have brought them both along together. In fact, death lies hidden in the birthgiving womb; there is only an interval of a hundred years.
In these hundred years you will complete your journey from one end to the other and go back exactly to the place from where you came. The death of your body is received from another at the time of your birth; therefore, death is also from another. So neither are you born, nor is it you who dies. In birth there was a medium and in death too the same will be the case. When you enter the sixth, cosmic body from the fifth, the spiritual body, you will be born for the first time. Then you will be self-born: your birth will be without a womb. But then self-death will at the same time await you - a wombless death also awaits you. Wherever this birth takes you, from there death will lead you even further ahead. The birth takes you to the Brahman and death to nirvana.
This birth can be very prolonged; it can be endless. Such a person, if he remains, will become God.
Such a consciousness if it travels for long will be worshipped by millions; prayers will be offered to him. Those whom we call an avatar, Ishwara, son of God, tirthankara, are those who have entered the sixth plane from the fifth. They can remain in that plane for as long as they wish and they can be of great help. There is no question of any harm coming from them and they can be great indicators.
Such persons are forever striving and working for others to travel through the preceding journey. The consciousness of people from the sixth plane can also relay messages in various ways, and those who have the slightest feel of such persons cannot place them anywhere lower than bhagwan, the blessed one. Bhagwan they are: there is nothing lacking in their being Bhagwan because they have attained the sixth, cosmic body.
In this very life it is possible to enter the sixth plane through the fifth. Whenever anyone enters the sixth in this life we call him a Buddha or a Mahavira or a Rama or a Krishna or a Christ. And those who perceive them as such look upon them as God. For those who cannot see the question does not arise.
One man in a village recognizes Buddha as Ishwara; to another he is nothing - absolutely ordinary.
He catches a cold like us; he falls ill just like us; he eats, sleeps, walks and talks like us; he even dies the same as us. "Then what is the difference between him and us?" is how they argue. The number of those who do not see is infinitely greater than of those who do, so those who do appear to be mad, deluded, because they have no evidence whatsoever to offer as proof.
Actually there is no evidence. For instance, this microphone is before me. If you who are present cannot see it, how will I prove to you that it is there? If I say it is and you cannot see it, I will be judged mad. To see when others cannot see is a proof that you are not sound of mind.
We measure enlightenment also by majority of votes; here too we have the voting system! So by some people Buddha is felt as God and by some not. Those who cannot see him as God will say, "What madness is this? He is the son of King Shuddhodana and so-and-so is his mother and so- and-so his wife. He is the same Gautama, not somebody else." Even his own father could not see that Gautama has become a totally different man. He looked upon him as his son, and said, "Into what kind of foolishness have you fallen? Return to the palace. What are you doing? The kingdom is getting ruined and I am getting old. You return and take care of everything." The poor father failed to recognize that Buddha had become the master of an infinite kingdom. Those who had the eyes to see looked upon such people as a tirthankara, Bhagwan, or the son of God. They will make use of some such word to address people of the sixth body.
The seventh body is never attained in this body. In this body we can at the most stand on the boundary line of the sixth body from where we can see the seventh. That jump, that void, that abyss, that eternity, is visible from there, and there we can stand. Therefore, in the life of Buddha two nirvanas have been mentioned. One nirvana he attained under the bodhi tree on the banks of the river Niranjana: that was forty years before his death. This is called nirvana. That day he stood on the periphery of the sixth body - and he remained there for forty long years. The day he died is called the mahaparinirvana; that day he entered the seventh plane. Therefore, when anyone asked him, "What will happen to the Tathagata after death?" Buddha would reply, "There will be no Tathagata."
But this does not satisfy the mind. Again and again they would ask, "What will happen to Buddha in mahaparinirvana?" To this Buddha replied, "Where all activities cease, where all happening ceases, that is called mahaparinirvana." As long as something keeps happening in the sixth body it is the existence; beyond this is the nonexistence. So when Buddha is not, nothing will remain. In a sense you may say he never was. He will fade away like a dream, like a line drawn on the sand, like a line drawn on water that disappears as it forms. He will be lost and nothing will remain. But this does not satisfy our minds. We say that somewhere, on some level, in some corner no matter how far away, he should exist. But in the seventh he becomes only the void, the formless.
There is no way of bringing new form beyond the seventh. There are people who stand on the borderline and see the seventh, who see that abyss; therefore, all that is known of the seventh plane is what is reported by those who stand at the boundary line. It is not an account of people who have gone there, because there is no means to give any account. It is just as if a man standing at the borderline of Pakistan would look and report that there is a house, a shop, a road, some people, and he can see the trees and the sun coming out. But this man is standing on the Indian border.
To go into the seventh from the sixth is the ultimate death. You will be surprised to know that the meaning of acharya in the olden days was one who teaches the final death. There are aphorisms which say, "Acharya is death." So when Nachiketa reaches the god of death he reaches the acharya.
The god of death can only teach death and nothing else. Acharya is a designation from which only dissolution, disintegration and extinction can be taught.
But before this death it is necessary for you to be born. Right now you don't exist. That which you consider as yourself is borrowed; it is not your real being. Even if you lose it, you were never the possessor. It is just as if I were to steal something and then give it in charity: since the thing did not belong to me, how can it be my donation? What is not mine I cannot give. So one whom we call a renunciate in this world is not a renunciate at all because he renounces that which is not his.
And how can you be the renouncer of that which is not yours? To claim to have left that which is not yours is madness.
Renunciation takes place when you enter the seventh from the sixth. There you cast aside that which is you - because you have nothing else. You leave your very being.
The only renunciation that is meaningful is the entrance from the sixth plane to the seventh. Before that all talk of renunciation is childish. The man who says "This is mine" is foolish. The man who says "I left all that was mine" is also foolish, because he still claims to be the possessor. Only we ourselves are ours - but we have no understanding of this.
Therefore, from the fifth to the sixth you will know who you are and from the sixth to the seventh you will be able to renounce that which you are. And the moment someone renounces that which he is there is nothing more left to be attained, there is nothing more left to be renounced. Then there is no question left. Then there is infinite stillness, eternal silence. After that one cannot say that there is bliss or peace; one cannot say that there is truth or falseness, light or darkness. Nothing can be said. This is the state of the seventh.
To attain the fifth body and to be awakened is one and the same thing. Then you no longer need the initial bodies. Now you can work from the fifth plane; now you are an awakened person. Hence, there is no difficulty. The initial bodies are required only up to the fourth body. If the fourth is activated and awakened the person becomes a deva - a heavenly soul. If the fourth lies idle and asleep the person enters the realm of the pretas - the evil spirits. You will have to return to the human form from both of these states, because you have no idea of your identity as yet. And in order to know your identity you must still have a need for the other. Only with the help of the other will you be able to know yourself.
Right now to know yourself you need the other; without the other you will not be able to recognize yourself. The other will form the boundary from where you will know yourself. Therefore, up to the fourth plane you will have to take birth under any circumstances. After the fifth the other is not necessary; it has no meaning. In the fifth it will be possible for you to be without the previous four bodies. But with the fifth the process of an entirely new kind of birth begins, and that is the entrance into the sixth plane. This is a different matter altogether and does not involve the first four bodies.
Now this is a different matter altogether. If a tirthankara wishes to be reborn a very interesting happening takes place: that is, before death he does not discard his fourth body. There is a way and a method of doing this, and that is by having the desire to be a tirthankara. So when the fourth body is falling away one desire has to be kept alive so that the fourth body does not drop. If the fourth drops birth in the physical form is impossible.
Then the bridge, the connection through which you came, is no more. So the desire to be a tirthankara has to be kept alive through the fourth body. Not all who are worthy become tirthankaras; they go straight along their way without this. There are only a few who become such masters, and their number is fixed beforehand. There is a reason why their number is predetermined. It is predetermined that for a particular age so many tirthankaras would be enough for so many people.
So the desire of becoming a tirthankara has to be very strong. It is the last desire, and if it slips the matter is over. So the seed of desire that "I want to teach others" must be very strong. One must feel, "I will show others the way; I will explain to others, I must come back for others." Then the tirthankara can descend into a physical body. But this means that the fourth body has not been left yet. He steps onto the fifth but he fastens a peg in the fourth body. This peg can be quickly uprooted; hence, it is a very difficult task to maintain it there.
There is a process of making tirthankaras: they are made in mystery schools, it is not an individual happening. In the same manner that a school functions, a group of seekers meditate. Then from among them they find one who shows full promise of becoming a tirthankara; he can express what he knows, he can impart what he knows, and he can communicate it to others. So the whole school begins to work on his fourth body. He is told to concentrate on his fourth body so that it should not disintegrate because it will be useful in the future. Thus, he will be taught ways and means of saving his fourth body. And more labor and hard work goes into saving this body than in discarding it.
It is so easy to let go and allow the fourth body to dissolve. When all the anchors are pulled up, when the sails are all drawn and filled with the wind, when the vast ocean calls and there is bliss and bliss everywhere, you can imagine how difficult it must be to guard one small peg. It is for this reason that when we address a tirthankara we say: "You are most compassionate."
This was the only reason why a tirthankara was so called. The greatest part of his compassion was that when everything was ready for his departure he stayed back for those who were still at the shore and whose boats were not yet ready to sail. His boat is absolutely ready; yet he bears the sufferings of this shore, he endures the stones and the abuses. He could have left anytime; his boat was ready to set sail. Yet for no reason of his own he preferred to be amidst those who are capable of harassing and even killing him. So his compassion knows no limits. But the desire for this compassion is taught in mystery schools. Therefore, meditators working individually cannot become tirthankaras, because when the peg is lost they will not know about it. Only when the boat has sailed do they realize that the shore is left far behind.
Even persons who have attained the sixth plane - those whom we call Ishwara - sometimes help in the advent of a tirthankara. When they find one worthy enough not to be let off from the shore they try in a thousand ways to keep him back. Even devas who, as I said, are helpful in doing good, take part in this. They go on influencing such a one to save one peg. They tell him, "We can see the peg; you cannot. But you have to save it."
So the world is not anarchic, disorderly. There are profound arrangements; there is order within order. Efforts of all kinds are often made - but at times the plans go amiss, as in the case of Krishnamurti. Great efforts were made with him to fix a peg, but they failed. The whole school of seekers made a tremendous effort to preserve a peg in his fourth body, but all efforts failed. Other persons had a hand in this effort. There were also the hands of higher souls behind this - of persons of the sixth and the fifth planes, and awakened ones of the fourth plane. Thousands took part in it.
Krishnamurti was chosen as well as a few other children who showed promise of becoming tirthankaras, but the opportunity passed away without bearing fruit. The peg could not be fixed, and so the world lost the benefit of a tirthankara which could have been possible through Krishnamurti.
But that is a different story....