A Bold Experiment

Fri, 6 January 1979 00:00:00 GMT
Book Title:
Philosophia Perennis, Vol 2
Chapter #:
am in Buddha Hall
Archive Code:
Short Title:
Audio Available:
Video Available:
100 mins

The first question

Question 1:


Deva Vinaya,

FAITH CAN HAVE THREE MEANINGS. First is belief - belief is a lie, it is insincere, dishonest. To believe something means you don't know it and yet you believe. It is hypocrisy. Belief is out of fear or out of greed. Belief is a conditioning by others imposed upon you; it is a slavery.

The true religious man cannot be a believer and he cannot be a disbeliever either - because disbelief is nothing but belief in a negative form. The catholic and the communist are not very different; the atheist and the theist are not very different - in fact not at all. They are aspects of the same coin. One believes in God, one believes in no- God. One loves God - the love is based on conditioning; it is not true - one hates God - that hate is also based on conditioning; that is not true either.

Those who start by belief never arrive, they cannot arrive. They will go round and round, but they will never penetrate the truth of existence. The beginning has to be open - neither of belief nor of disbelief. The beginning has to be innocent. And if the beginning is innocent, THEN it is faith.

Faith is not belief: faith is faith in truth. "If there is truth, then we will know it, there is no need to believe. There is no need to believe in the Bible or the Vedas or the Koran. If truth was revealed to Mohammed and Christ and to Krishna, why not to me?" This is faith.

Faith means faith in oneself. Faith means a confidence, a respect for oneself. Belief is other-oriented: faith is self-oriented. Faith is a totally different world! It has nothing to do with belief. Belief divides people into Christians, Mohammedans, Hindus, Buddhists.

The man of faith knows no religion - except the religion of inquiry. He believes not in beliefs but in inquiry. And his faith is so much in his own being that he goes unguarded into the unknown, that he moves into the uncharted without any fear. His faith in existence is such that he needs no other support. Faith is self-oriented; faith has a beauty.

Belief is ugly. Avoid believing, because believing is lying. Faith is a search, an inquiry.

The scientist has faith, and your so-called religious person has belief. What is the faith of a scientist? The faith that existence is a cosmos, not a chaos, that existence is based on some fundamental law. The faith that that law is discoverable. The faith that man's consciousness is capable of knowing that fundamental law, the order of life and existence. The scientist has faith. Your so-called religious person has no faith. Because he has no faith he substitutes it by a plastic, synthetic thing called belief. Avoid belief.

Faith will make you more integrated than you are: belief will make you more disintegrated than you are. Belief will keep you a slave: faith will give you a mastery.

Belief will help you, certainly, to become part of a herd, of a crowd. It will be a kind of security; it is comfortable, convenient. Faith is dangerous: it will take you into the realms of the unknown. It will make you alone; you will not be with the crowd and the crowd will not be with you either. But to be alone is of tremendous import, because to be alone is purity, and to be alone one has to be alert, one has to be aware.

The believer falls asleep. The man of faith keeps wakeful - he HAS to keep wakeful because there is nobody else to support him. He is not part of the crowd psychology; he has to stand on his own. But he believes in the cosmos. He does not believe in any doctrine, creed, but there is a tacit belief that existence is not disorderly, that existence is based on a certain order, and that order can be discovered.

Herman Hesse's statement that FAITH AND DOUBT BELONG TOGETHER AND GOVERN EACH OTHER LIKE INHALING AND EXHALING IS true about belief but not about faith as I am defining it. Just change the word 'faith' and the statement is true.

Read: Belief and doubt belong together and govern each other like inhaling and exhaling.

Belief always represses doubt; belief is a strategy to repress doubt. That's why believers say, "I believe strongly." Why strongly? There must be a strong doubt deep down; it needs a strong belief to force it, to repress it into the unconscious. Whenever somebody says 'strong belief' that simply means the doubt is big and has to be fought, and you will need a very strong belief to fight with it.

That's why believers become fanatics. What is a fanatic? A man who has such strong doubt inside himself that unless he is a fanatic he will not be able to repress it. He is afraid of his doubt; he is so much afraid of his doubt that he never looks within. He has to create such fanaticism around himself, such smoke of fanaticism, that the doubt gets completely lost.

And the fanatic cannot communicate; he is afraid - you may say something to him that will bring his doubt again to the surface. He cannot listen to the other side. His argument is his sword - he cannot argue, he can only kill. By killing he proves that his belief is right. That's why Christians and Mohammedans and others have been killing each other - - these are all fanatics. They have made the earth very ugly. They have destroyed much that is beautiful and should be preserved. They have reduced humanity to a very unconscious phenomenon. They have not allowed human beings to flower and bloom; they have been very destructive. They have not been blessings: they have been curses.

The man who has faith is never a fanatic, cannot be. He is open, he is available, he is reachable, he is vulnerable. He is ready to listen; he is in every way ready to understand the opposite viewpoint. Who knows? The opposite viewpoint may be right. The man of faith has no prejudice to protect; he has no a priori idea; he is not rooted in any ideology at all. He is simply open, inquiring, searching, seeking. He is Ready to listen to everything; all his doors and windows are open. He is not a Leibnitzian monad - he is not a windowless phenomenon. He is available to the sun and the rain and the wind; he is available to God in whatsoever form it comes. He is ready to search for truth. He has no prejudice that the truth should be like 'this'. He does not start with an idea; he starts with a great longing to know, but with no idea to impose on reality.

The man of faith is never a fanatic. A Buddha is never a fanatic. The man of faith is very rational: the man of belief is utterly irrational. He cannot allow reason because he is afraid - reason may disturb his belief . Somehow he has managed to live in a cozy belief, and the reason may come like a storm and disturb everything. He cannot open his doors and windows; he has to remain closed in his own darkness - only then can he go on believing. He functions like an ostrich. He closes his eyes so that he has never to change what he believes. The man of faith lives with open eyes, alert, watchful.

Herman Hesse is right about belief but not right about faith. But there is a third meaning also: that is trust. First meaning is belief - belief is ugly, avoid it. Second meaning is faith - faith is beautiful, imbibe it. And the third meaning is trust - trust means faith has arrived at the goal. Faith is fulfilled, one has come to know, then trust arises.

Trust means "I know," not "I believe." And the person who knows, he need not believe at all - for what? He knows! so there is no question of belief. Only those who don't know believe. Believers never reach the ultimate meaning, trust - only those who have faith reach trust. Faith is the pilgrimage and trust is the destiny. Begin in faith, end in trust.

These are the three meanings of 'faith'. The word is very vague; you will have to understand all the three meanings, because sometimes it is used in the first meaning, sometimes in the second, sometimes in the third.

The second question

Question 2:


YOU ARE LIVING IN IT. Hell is a certain psychology; hell is a certain way of looking at things. If you are in misery, that means you are living in hell. Hell is not a geographical place; it is not somewhere underneath the earth: it is in your way of looking at things. It is living in an unconscious way that one creates hell around oneself.

And so is heaven: that too is again a psychology, not something geographical. It is not somewhere above the clouds - it is not anywhere except in you. These are the two alternatives to live in: to live in hell or to live in heaven. And it is up to you what you choose.

If you live consciously, if you try to bring consciousness to every act that you go through, you will be living in a silent, blissful state, in serenity, in joy, in love. Your life will have the flavour of a festival. That is the meaning of heaven: your life will have many flowers in it, much fragrance will be released through you. You will have an aura of delight. Your life will be a song of life-affirmation, it will be a sacred yes to all that existence is. You will be in communion with existence - in communion with stars, with the trees, with the rivers, with the mountains, with people, with animals. This whole life and this whole existence will have a totally different meaning for you. From every nook and corner, rivers of bliss will be flowing towards you.

Heaven is just a name for that state of mind.

Hell means you are living so unconsciously, so absurdly, in such contradiction, that you go on creating more and more misery for yourself. And still you ask:


You should not ask it - you know. You are living in it.

A bedraggled, worried Jew, surrounded by crying children of all sizes, sat in the chaircar of a transcontinental express nursing a baby of about one and a half years. He was spanking the baby, mumbling to himself as he did so:

"Smack, you do it again. Smack, you do it again. Smack, you do it again."

Such seeming cruelty aroused the ire of a motherly woman who sat in the next seat, and she rose, shook her finger in his face and said, "If you strike that baby one more time I will give you so much trouble that you will never forget it!"

The harassed little man paused with uplifted arm and slowly raised his patient eyes to hers. "Lady," he said. "Why lady, my wife is in the baggage coach ahead, she's dead, and I ain't got no place to bury her. And my daughter Rifka is in the Pullman, and she is going to have a baby, and she ain't got no husband. And that kid has just thrown my hat out of the window. And I am on the wrong train and I don't know where I am going. And this baby has ruined my clothes and my baggage is lost. Trouble! Lady, you give me trouble?


What more proofs do you need that you are in hell? Just watch your life. Just look at your own face in the mirror. What have you done to yourself? It is already hell!

But down the ages we have been thinking that hell is somewhere else - that creates a deception, that makes you feel as if you are not in hell. And you ARE in it! It is NOT somewhere else. The idea of hell being somewhere else is a strategy created by the priests to deceive you, to make you feel that you are not in it, and to keep you afraid. And they have also created the idea of heaven - that too is somewhere else, so that it goes on hanging in front of you like a carrot. And you can be pulled, pushed, manipulated, by the priests through greed and fear.

You have been made afraid of hell, you have been made very much greedy for heaven.

And because you always think they are somewhere else, you remain deceived.

ALL IS HERE! AND ALL IS NOW! There is no other time than now and no other place than here. Hell is here if you live with a wrong psychology, and heaven is here if you live with a right psychology. But I would like you to know about one thing more....

Heaven and hell are only two sides of your mind. The religions that were born outside India have remained with these two ideas, heaven and hell. They could not rise above them. Judaism, Christianity, Islam - all the three religions born outside India, have no idea of something transcendental. In India we have a third word MOKSHA, NIRVANA.

Hell is a wrong psychology, ill, abnormal, neurotic, pathological; heaven is a right psychology, normal, healthy. But there is a beyond where you are no more a mind, when both sides of the mind have been dropped, where you are a no-mind, where you are neither negative nor positive, where you are neither dark nor light, where you are neither this nor that - where you are just a witness to all, to misery and bliss, to all, just a witness, where you are not identified with either misery OR bliss, where hell is a functioning of the mind, and heaven too, and you are beyond both, a watcher on the hills.

That state of witnessing, that state of transcendence is called MOKSHA - freedom, absolute freedom. Freedom from mind is absolute freedom.

I don't teach you heaven, because heaven will always remain with hell; the other side cannot be dropped. If you want to keep one side of the coin, you will have to keep the other side too. If you want to keep the mind, you may be for a few moments in great joy, but again and again moments of sadness will erupt. The other side will have to be recognized.

That's why those who live in the mind go on moving from one polarity to the other.

Sometimes they are happy, immensely happy, in heaven, and sometimes they are immensely miserable, in hell. Sometimes great joy and sometimes great sadness; sometimes love and sometimes hate. And they are pulled constantly into these opposite directions.

This is the state. You have also known a few moments of joy and love and happiness, but they come and go; you cannot abide in them, they can't be made eternal. They are only moments. And when they go, you fall back into the deep dark valleys of depression, despair, anguish.

One goes on moving between heaven and hell continuously! Seeing this, watching this deeply, Buddhas have discovered a third standpoint which is beyond mind, which is no- mind, which is freedom from duality. Pythagoras calls it the golden mean. By 'golden mean' he means if you stop exactly in the middle between happiness and unhappiness, between sadness and joy, if you can stop EXACTLY in the middle, then there will be neither joy nor sadness, there will be neither happiness nor unhappiness, neither pain nor pleasure. And in the EXACT middle, the transcendence happens: you are just a watcher, a witness.

That witnessing is the goal here. I would like all of my sannyasins to become witnesses.

Witness everything, and don't get identified with anything - even beautiful things, tremendously joyous things. Keep aloof, keep a distance; don't lose yourself in them. Let them come and go. Everything that comes goes, everything that is born dies, but you remain - you as a witness always remain.

Once you have found that eternal witness in vou. you have found God. God is not an object, but your pure subjectivity.

The third question

Question 3:


Doctor Malik,

Science HAS ITS OWN LIMITATIONS. I am ready, I can invite scientists to come here to watch what is happening. They are welcome. But they will not be able to know the real thing that is happening here. They will only be able to know the body of it, they will miss the soul - their very methodology prevents it.

Just like if you ask the scientist, "Please watch this roseflower, it is so beautiful" - he can analyse the roseflower, he can reduce it to its constituents. He can tell you how much water is in it, and how much colour and how much perfume, and how much earth and how much air. He can tell you everything that comes within HIS vision, that which he can catch hold of by his methodology. But his methodology is limited. He will not be able to catch hold of the beauty of the flower - that is certain. He will not be able to find any beauty in the flower scientifically. As a man, as a man of heart, he MAY say that the rose is beautiful - but not as a scientist.

If he really goes scientifically into the existence of the rose, he will find everything except beauty. About beauty there are only two possibilities that he will tell. One: that there is no beauty, that it is your projection; that it is in your eyes, not in the flower; that it is your dream, your idea, that you have imposed upon it. Or the other, which will be far more scientific: he will simply say beauty is non-existential.

Beauty cannot be found by the scientist. If you give him anything he will reduce it to matter. And all that is great in it, all that is invisible in it, all that belongs to the beyond, will automatically disappear.

I am absolutely ready. Scientists can come, they can watch whatsoever is happening here through meditations, through music, through therapeutic situations - they can watch. But they will know only the periphery of it. If they really want to know the very soul of it then they will have to become participants, not watchers, not spectators. They will have to fall en rapport with me.

They will not be able to know what is happening only by watching OTHER meditators:

they will have to become meditators themselves. And that is the problem - the scientific methodology is against it. The scientific methodology is based on this idea that the scientist has to remain only a spectator, uninvolved. He is not to become a participant; he has to be there, aloof, detached, just as an observer.

But there are things which can be known only by participation. For example, love cannot be known only by observation. If you see two lovers kissing each other, what are you going to know about it scientifically? Just a transfer of a few germs from the lips of one to the other - what else? The kiss will be reduced to a transfer of germs. The beauty, the soul of the kiss, has disappeared. It has become really ugly; it is no more beautiful.

Love becomes chemistry in the hands of the scientist. It becomes a hormonal attraction. It has something to do with sexual glands and nothing to do with the individual as a whole.

It is only a question of male hormones or female hormones; it is a biological attraction.

But then love loses all poetry, love simply becomes a very ordinary phenomenon. It becomes very mundane, it loses all sacredness.

So, Doctor Malik, you are welcome, your friends are welcome.

Malik is a psychiatrist in the Delhi University. You can come here - he IS here - you can bring your friends, and you can do what you call scientific work, scientific scrutiny.

But I will have to tell you beforehand that whatsoever you come to know will be only the circumference of it. If you really want to know it, you will have to come here not as scientists but as poets, lovers, meditators, participants. Only then the core of it will be revealed to you.

That has become one of the most fundamental problems humanity is facing today, that wherever science moves, it reduces everything to the LOWEST denominator. It uglifies things. If you ask about the lotus, the scientist only finds mud and nothing else. The lotus comes out of the mud, that's true - but it is not just mud and nothing else.

If you ask a Buddha, then you will have a totally different perspective. If you ask the Buddha, then even mud is nothing but a hidden lotus.

That is what true religion is, the true vision of religion is: it beautifies things. It takes everything to its highest peak. In religion, the religious approach believes in the highest and the lowest is only a container. The scientific approach believes in the lowest, and the highest is just a by-product.

Karl Marx has said that man's consciousness is nothing but a by-product - a by-product of his physiology. Just a by-product, an epi-phenomenon, a shadow. It can be ignored, it need not be taken into account.

It is because of people like Karl Marx that Joseph Stalin could kill millions of people in Russia. If consciousness is just a shadow then there is no problem, you can kill as many shadows as you want. You are not killing anything at all! If they are only shadows, epi- phenomena, by-products, then why be worried? Man is nothing but the body.

You have reduced all divinity into dust.

Science has to learn something from religion, only then can there be a future for science.

Otherwise science is doomed, and with science, man's future is doomed. Adolf Hitler's approach is very scientific, just as Joseph Stalin's is. Man disappears in the scientific approach - there is no soul in him, just a mechanism. And you can destroy machines, there is no problem in it. And you will not feel any guilt, any prick in your conscience.

Meditation is an inner phenomenon. It is serenity at the deepest core of your being. It is bliss. And ultimately it is a transcendence of all situations. It is utter silence. You will not be able to detect it by scientific scrutiny.

If you go and watch a Buddha, what are you going to find? You will not be able to penetrate into his deepest core - that will remain unavailable. Yes, you can watch his behaviour, but the behaviour is not the man. And modern psychiatry is basically behaviouristic - it believes only in the behaviour, because behaviour is observable. It does not believe in the soul, because the soul is not observable.

In fact, psychiatry, psychology, psychotherapy: these words should not be used - because the word 'psyche' means soul, and the soul is completely denied. Not that psychologists have come to know that there is no soul; it is denied because the methods that they use are very gross.

For example, if you want to hear music through the eyes you will not be able to hear the music. And then you can say, "There is no music, because I cannot see it." If you make it a point that music can be accepted only when seen, then your very approach has made it absolutely certain that there is no music.

Music can be heard but not seen. Beauty can be seen but not heard. Each method has its own limitation. The scientific method is very gross. That's why it has become very very penetrating in the world of matter, but it has become absolutely oblivious of the world of the spirit. The spiritual world is non-existential for the scientist AS a scientist. Love, poetry, music, beauty, bliss - all are non-existential. This is a very lopsided vision.

Pythagoras wanted a science which was able to be mathematical and musical both - he wanted it to be a synthesis. And that's my longing too: a real science will have two aspects to it. One will be the objective aspect, the objective science, and the other will be the subjective aspect, the subjective science. And that will be the point of meeting of religion and science.

Science is objective science, and religion is subjective science. And man is both: the meeting of the inner and the You ask me, Doctor Malik: HOW WOULD YOU LIKE YOUR BOLD EXPERIMENT TO BE UNDER SCIENTIFIC SCRUTINY?

I am perfectly happy - you can come. But you will know only about the body and you will miss the soul - UNLESS you are also courageous enough to become participants here, crazy enough to dance with my people and sing with mv people and celebrate with my people, not keeping aloof, but dissolving yourself into the commune. Then you will know both the sides, the outer and the inner. But the inner you will know as an individual, not as a scientist. The outer you can know as a scientist.


ONE VERY FUNDAMENTAL THING has to be understood. Modern psychiatry is rooted and based in illness - it knows nothing about wellness. Modern psychology and all its branches are basically following the medical model. And that is utterly wrong, because just to look into man's pathology is not right.

That's where Sigmund Freud missed. He contributed something immensely valuable, but still he missed the whole point. He was too much interested in the abnormal, in the ill.

And slowly slowly, because all that he studied was nothing but illness, he started feeling that there is no hope for man.

To study illness is needed, because ill people have to be helped. But they cannot be really helped unless you know what wellness is. At the most, you can make them adjusted to the society, but the society ITSELF IS ill.

That's what modern psychiatry, psychoanalysis, psychotherapies, go on doing. Whenever somebody becomes a little unadjusted, the work of the psychiatrist is to pull him back to adjustment. Adjustment is thought to be normal. But that is not necessarily the case - because if the society itself is abnormal then to get adjusted to it will be abnormality, not normality.

In fact, great suspicion has arisen in modern days. R. D. Laing and other people have become suspicious of the whole project. The society is abnormal, and you help people to be adjusted to it! You serve the society, you don't serve those people. You are agents of the society, of the status quo, of the establishment. And the person whom you are forcing - through drugs, through electro-shocks, through psychoanalysis and a thousand and one other methods - may be really a normal person. And because he is normal he cannot adjust to the abnormal society.

Just think of a Buddha. The Buddha cannot adjust to the society. The Buddhas have always been rebellious. They cannot bow down to the society, they cannot surrender to the society - the society is ill! The society has been living under a great curse, the curse that has been created by the priests and the politicians. It has been living under a great conspiracy.

People have not been allowed to be healthy, because healthy people are dangerous.

People are not allowed to be intelligent, because intelligent people are dangerous. Your educational system exists not to help people to become intelligent, but to hinder people from becoming intelligent. It exists there so that everybody can be reduced to a mediocre being, so that everybody is reduced to a stupid scholar.

And twenty-five years of conditioning from kindergarten to the university can reduce anybody to a stupid scholar, can make anybody mediocre - because your education requires that people should be able to reproduce whatsoever has been taught to them.

That is the criterion of their intelligence.

That may be the criterion of their parrotlike memory, but it is not the criterion of their intelligence. Intelligence is a totally different phenomenon. Intelligence has nothing to do with repetition; in fact intelligence will abhor repetition. Intelligence will always try to live life in its own way. Intelligence will like to do its own thing. Intelligence will like to enter into life's mysteries, not according to set formulas, prescribed strategies.

Intelligence is always original.

And the universities don't allow original people to exist. They weed out original people; their whole effort is to destroy originality - because original people will always create trouble in the society. They will not be so easily manipulatable, and they cannot be so easily reduced to clerks and deputy collectors and station masters and school teachers - they cannot be so easily reduced to efficient machines. They will assert themselves. They will try to live life not according to a pattern but according to their own insight.

If a person loves music he would rather remain a beggar but still he will persist in living the life of a musician. Even if he has the choice of becoming the prime minister he would rather live like a beggar and insist on going on playing his music. That will be intelligence, because only when you live your life according to your own lights, according to your own insights, according to your own inner voice, do you attain to bliss, to fulfillment.

And to become a prime minister you don't need intelligence. In fact if you have intelligence you cannot become a prime minister, because who would like to go into politics if he has intelligence? Who would like to go into that ugly game? One would like to become a poet or a painter or a dancer - but WHO would like to become a politician?

Not the intelligent person but only those who are still barbarians, only those who still enjoy violence, domination over other people.

Universities destroy intelligence. Your education is very destructive to intelligence - it serves the society, and the society is abnormal, very abnormal. In three thousand years, five thousand wars have been fought: can you say this society is healthy? this society is sane?

Man is always ready to kill, murder, or commit suicide. What kind of society is this? And psychiatry and psychoanalysis try to adjust people. They call unadjusted people 'abnormal'. That's why psychologists go on saying that Jesus was abnormal. In fact, they say he was neurotic. Jesus neurotic! And the rabbis who managed to murder this man, they were healthy. Jesus is neurotic: Pontius Pilate is healthy, normal.

If Jesus is neurotic, then Buddha is neurotic, Mahavira is neurotic, Pythagoras, Patanjali, Lao Tzu, Zarathustra, all are neurotics. Socrates is neurotic - and the judges, those stupid judges who decided that he should be poisoned and killed, they are normal.

The whole earth is a madhouse, Doctor Malik. And Doctor Malik lives in Delhi - he should know well that Delhi attracts all kinds of neurotic people.

Who is ill? And how can you decide and define illness unless you know what wellness is?

Sigmund Freud missed, because he only studied the ill people. But ill people can be studied, because illness always happens on the periphery. And the well people cannot be studied, because wellness happens at the center. It wells up in your being. Illness is superficial, wellness is intrinsic. Sigmund Freud cannot study a Buddha, because he will not be able to find any symptoms.

You can go to a doctor and you can ask, "What is the definition of health?" and you will be surprised that no doctor can answer it. At the most he can say, "When a person is not ill, he is healthy." But what kind of definition is this? - "When a person has no illnesses he is healthy." Health is a positive phenomenon and you are defining it negatively. Illness they can define. They can define what is cancer and what is tuberculosis and they can define all kinds of illnesses - millions of illnesses they can define. But a single phenomenon, health, remains indefinable - it has not been studied at all.

Unless psychology becomes rooted in the people who are whole and holy - who are enlightened, alert, aware, who have transcended all kinds of identifications, who have become pure consciousness - unless psychology studies these people.... But then psychology will have to change its methods. Then it cannot go on imitating physiology, physics, chemistry and the natural sciences. Then it will have to learn much from literature, from poetry, from music. Then it will have to move more and more close to the arts rather than going and following science.

That has been the misfortune, that Sigmund Freud was basically a physician, a medical doctor. And his idea of making a science of psychology was the idea of medical science.

He started studying ill people, and he based his whole understanding in the illnesses. And because when you treat ill people only ill people come to you, slowly slowly, all that you know about man is that which you have known through ill people. Then that becomes your understanding about man.

That's why whatsoever Freud says about man is basically wrong. It is about the ILL man - it is not about the human man, it is not about humanity. It is not about a real man, it is something about the ill person.

For example, if you study only blind people, and you decide that no man has eyes, what kind of understanding will that be? It will not be true about man, it will be only true about blind people.

Psychiatrists only come across ill people, and then they start deciding about man, they start defining man. That is going beyond their limits. First you will have to understand the whole - the ill man and the well man, both. And in fact the man who is perfectly well should be the criterion; he should be the decisive factor. Psychology has to become the psychology of the Buddhas. Only then will it be true, authentic.

My effort here is not that of a psychiatrist or a psychotherapist. I am not treating ill people here. My effort here is to release the sources of well-being in you. I am not interested in treating you, I am interested in freeing you.


NO. THAT DOES NOT MEAN that meditation cannot help - it helps, but that is coincidental. It helps, but that is only a by-product.

My basic effort here is to create Buddhas - people who are whole. I am not treating ill people here - although a few ill people come, and they ARE helped, but that is not my purpose here. It is not a therapeutic community: it is a spiritual commune. Therapies are happening here, but they are not basically meant for ill people - because in my vision the whole of humanity is ill, it is abnormal.

The therapies that happen here are not particularly interested in any particular kind of disease. We are simply helping so-called normal people to become REALLY normal.

As I see it, every human being is brought up by ill people, abnormal people - the parents, the teachers - and naturally they go on giving their illnesses to the child. Unless one becomes alert about what has been done to oneself, unless one dares, is courageous, has guts, to drop all conditioning, one never becomes normal.

Sixty therapeutic groups are run here, just to help common people, the so-called normal people, to be aware that they are not normal - that is the first step towards becoming normal. And once you have understood that you are not normal, things start changing. A great awareness starts arising in you: something has to be done, something becomes urgent.

And we help people to drop their conditionings - Hindu, Christian, Mohammedan, communist. We help people to drop all their conditionings, because only an unconditioned being is really normal and natural. Conditionings are perversions. So we are not really interested in helping so-called ill people. Our work is to help the so-called normal people. But sometimes ill people come and they ARE benefitted. That is just a fringe phenomenon, on the margin.

So I cannot say which meditation is going to help which particular disease. In fact, EACH meditation will help in some way or other, because all meditation techniques are basically moving to the same point of inner silence. The method may be active or the method may be passive, it doesn't matter, the goal is the same. It may be a Sufi method, it may be a Zen method - the goal is the same. The goal is: how to make you so silent that all thinking disappears and you are just a mirror, reflecting that which is.

My definition of God is: that which is. And once you start seeing that which is, and you start falling in tune with it, well-being arises. You become part of this tremendously beautiful universe.

But, Doctor Malik, if you come here and your friends come here, they can look into this matter - which meditation will help which kind of disease. And that will be immensely beneficial.

Psychoanalysis and psychiatry help ill people. Religion helps people who are already well but would like to know the peaks of wellness - would like to go to the Everest of wellness, what Abraham Maslow calls 'peak experiences'. Those peak experiences are everybody's birthright. And if you don't have peak experiences you are missing something immensely valuable.

But religion goes even one step further ahead than Abraham Maslow and humanistic psychologies. It is not only a question of attaining peak experiences - because peak experiences will come and go. You cannot remain on the peak for ever. You can have a deep sexual orgasmic experience, you can attain to a peak - but the moment you have attained, already you have started going downhill. You cannot stay on the peak; there is no space to stay.

All peaks are the repetition of the ancient myth of Sisyphus. Sisyphus carries the rock to the peak of the hill, but the peak is small and the rock is big. Sisyphus has been punished by the gods, because he rebelled against the gods, to take the rock to the peak. But the moment the rock reaches the peak it starts falling back, slipping back, downhill.

That is the story of every man. You cannot stay on the peak. You will make the journey, the long journey, to reach the peak - and once you have attained, it is finished. The moment you become aware of the peak, it is no more; you have started going downhill.

There is no space to abide.

Religion helps you not only for peak experiences - that is only for the beginners - religion does not help you only to have beautiful experiences, but to have a total orgasmic consciousness. Not the peak experience, not the orgasmic experience, but an orgasmic consciousness - so that you are twenty-four hours in an orgasmic ecstasy. So that your whole life, moment-to-moment, is a celebration.

My effort here is that of religion. I help people first to know peak experiences so that a great longing can arise in them to abide on those peaks. But one cannot abide on those peaks. Then another effort starts in your life: how to create orgasmic CONSCIOUSNESS. Peaks are experiences, they come and go. Orgasmic consciousness is a transformation of your being. It is a new birth, a resurrection. But attaining to peak experiences helps many ill people. I am not concerned with it, but it helps.

So it is perfectly good, Doctor Malik, you, your friends, are welcome. Come, study, study scientifically, AND study as participants. Find out what meditations can be helpful to what kind of diseases.

But that is not my work. It is happening here. My goal is totally different - but many other things happen always on the fringe, on the margin. And if you are interested in those marginal things, it is perfectly good. If somebody can be helped in any way by this experiment that is going on here, I will be happy.

The last question

Question 4:


LIFE AND BORING? Man, what are you talking about? You must be living in a kind of death. It is not life that is boring - you must be dead! That's why you are feeling bored.

Rather than taking responsibility on your own shoulders, you are throwing it on life. But that's how the human mind continuously goes on playing games.

It always throws the responsibility on somebody else; it always finds a scapegoat. It is very irresponsible. And those who are irresponsible will never change. Don't say life is boring - see that you don't know how to live. You must be living in a wrong way; you must be living in a negative way. You must be living at the minimum; your life must be a lukewarm life - that's why it is boring.

Life is incredibly ecstatic, but then it has to be lived at the optimum. Then you have to live in a maximum way - not lukewarm. You have to be hot, passionately alive. Your life must be missing passion. Then it is boring. But it is you who are responsible, it is not life which is responsible for it.

No animal is bored, no bird is bored, no tree is bored, no river, no mountain, no star - only man.... This capacity to be bored is not necessarily a curse: it is a blessing in disguise. It simply says man is free to choose between boredom and ecstasy - nobody else is free to choose. Except for man, the whole existence is ecstatic, but there is no choice. The ecstasy is in-built. The birds are chirping, singing, the trees are blooming, the stars are shining... but it is all in-built.

Man has the choice. That is a great gift of God. Man is free to choose - and then if you choose a life that is boring, remember, it is your own responsibility. You can choose a life that is ecstatic.

I have lived both the ways! - that's why I can say it so authoritatively. I have lived the way you are living, for many many lives. I was also bored. Now, I am as ecstatic as the birds, as the trees - with only one difference: this is my choice, this is my freedom. And when you are blissful with freedom, your bliss has a depth. a tremendous grandeur which the bliss of the birds and the animals cannot have. Their bliss is almost imposed upon them.

And remember. even if freedom is imposed upon them, because it is imposed it will lose all meaning. If you are forced to live in paradise, and you are not allowed to get out of it, and naked swords are watching the gates, you will feel bored.

That's what happened to Adam and Eve: they started feeling bored in paradise. They wanted to do something new, something novel. It was out of boredom that they ate the fruit of the tree of knowledge. They must have started feeling bored. Everything was good, everything was beautiful! But it was imposed: it was not chosen by themselves.

When a man chooses by himself, even if he chooses the prison, he will be happy there - if it is HIS choice.

Freedom is a great gift. And it is only man who is free - it is man's glory. But we have turned it into agony, because we always choose the boring life. Why do we choose the boring life always? Because the boring life is more secure, convenient, safe. If you really want to live passionately, then you will have to live in insecurity and you will have to live in danger, and always in danger. And you will have to live through many inconveniences.

You cannot live so comfortably, you cannot live in such coziness; you will always be open to all kinds of dangers.

That's why people choose a boring life. Rather than living passionately, they live at the minimum - because if you live at the minimum you live with minimum risk. Otherwise, life is tremendous surprise - and EACH moment. If you live with open eyes and passionately, intelligently, dangerously... that's what Friedrich Nietzsche says: Live dangerously!

That's what I say, that's what sannyas is all about - living dangerously. Living moment- to-moment alert to what is happening. Not living in the past, but living in the present.

Ready to risk.... And then you will see a totally different quality happening around you:

life becomes psychedelic, it starts gaining depth, meaning. It becomes something fantastic, something intoxicating.

And when you live moment-to-moment, you cannot live a knowledgeable life, because knowledge comes from the past. If you live moment-to-moment, dropping the past, dying to the past every moment, you will live a life of innocence, like a child. That is the life of a sage: to live like a child.

Jesus says: "Unless you are like little children you will not enter into my kingdom of God." You will have to live without knowledgeability, you will have to live innocently, you will have to live with wonder, with wondering eyes, always ready to be surprised.

Life IS FULL of surprise! It is just the dust of knowledge that has gathered in your eyes so that you cannot see the surprises. They are happening all around! Every moment miracles upon miracles are happening. Life is miraculous. How can you be bored? Life is such a miracle, with so many surprises, so unpredictable, so ridiculous, so absurd!...

It is said:

When Bodhidharma became enlightened, he could not stop laughing for days, he could not sleep either, because the laughter wouldn't stop. Everybody became worried - the disciples and the friends, and they all inquired, "What has happened? And why don't you stop? Are you going mad? or have you gone mad?"

And when people said such things, Bodhidharma would laugh even more; he would roll on the ground. Slowly slowly, it cooled down, but the quality remained forever with him.

Laughter became his flavour.

When he cooled down a little bit, when the shock of enlightenment was absorbed, when that lightning experience was digested, then he said, "I started laughing because it is so ridiculous. I was trying to get that which I have already got. I was trying to get that which is already in me, which I have never lost. I was trying to find bliss and bliss is my nature.

I was trying to find truth, and I am truth."

Just as Jesus says, "I am the way, I am the door, I am the truth..." He is not saying it only about himself: he is saying it about every 'I'; whosoever can say 'I' is the way, is the gate, is the truth. The statement is not about Jesus as a person; the statement is about everybody who is capable of saying 'I'.

And, really, when you find that all that you have been searching for down the ages was already the case, you HAD it within you, how can you stop laughing then? But you may not become a Bodhidharma so soon - still life need not be boring. I will tell you a few stories.

The first:

A man who was very depressed met his friend, Jerry J., who was a very sharp thinker.

"What is the matter?" Jerry J. asked.

"I'm despondent. I can't adjust to the fact that I've got three balls."

"Three balls?" said sharp Jerry. "Kid, we can make a fortune together! " "How?" asked the other fellow, brightening up.

"We will go to bar after bar and bet everybody around that between you and the bartender you've got five balls! It can't miss!"

"Let's go," said the man.

So they went into the first bar, and Jerry J. made friends with the strangers at the bar.

Then he made the announcement: "I will bet anybody in the place that between my friend here and the bartender there they've got five balls."

Nearly everyone rushed forward to cover the bet. Jerry looked at the bartender who was shaking his head.

"You don't mind being part of the wager, do you?" Jerry asked.

"Not at all," the bartender said. "I am very impressed."

"How do you mean?" Jerry asked.

"Well, up to now I've never met a man with four balls - I've got only one."

The second:

It happened in Paris in the spring. On a sunny day in May a Chinaman picked up a whore on the Champs Elysees and took her to the Meurice Hotel. They opened the windows and the breeze blew in and everything seemed beautiful. The Chinaman got into the bed with the whore. He made love to her for a while and then said, "Pardonnez-moi, Mademoiselle, je suis fatigue."

So saying, he went to the window and took a deep breath. Then he went under the bed, came out the other side, and jumped into bed to make love again.

After a while he got up saying, "Pardonnez-moi, Mademoiselle, je suis fatigue." Again he went to the window, took a deep breath, rolled under the bed and came out the other side.

The sixth time this happened, the whore had become very tired too. Getting out of bed, she said, "Pardonnez-moi, Monsieur, je suis fatigue."

She went to the open window, took a deep breath, and looked under the bed. She found four other Chinamen there.

And the third:

So this old man went into Ma Agnew's whorehouse and said, "Listen, Ma, I want a girl with gonorrhea."

The madam nodded and sent him upstairs to a room. Then she called one of her favourites for him. The girl came into the room and started to undress when he asked, "Do you have gonorrhea?"

"Gonorrhea? I should say not!" she said.

The old man sent her back. The madam summoned another girl and said. "Shirley, you go upstairs, and tell this old codger that you have the clap. Okay? Let's do what we have to to make him happy."

The girl agreed and went upstairs, and when the old man asked, "Do you have gonorrhea?" she smiled and said, "Of course I do!"

"Good!" he said. "Let's get it on."

They got into bed together and made love for about ten minutes. When it was over and they lay side by side, the girl named Shirley said, "Listen, grandpa, I've got a confession to make - I don't really have gonorrhea."

The old man smiled. "Now you do," he said.

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From Jewish "scriptures":

Baba Mezia 59b. A rabbi debates God and defeats Him.
God admits the rabbi won the debate.