I am just a midwife
The first question.
I ALWAYS YEARN TO BE HERE, BUT WHY, ON SEEING YOU, AM I FILLED WITH AWE?
THAT'S HOW IT SHOULD BE. One should feel blessed, because awe is the only quality that can make man, religious. That is the only door. Through awe, you start feeling the divine around you. Eyes filled with awe cannot deny God; it is impossible.
And people who have forgotten how to be filled with awe cannot accept God. God is not the question. If you are still capable of being in a tremendous state of wonder, so tremendous, so penetrating that thinking stops, everything stops -- suddenly time is not there, space is not there, and you cannot figure it out, what it is -- some sublime presence is felt in those moments.
But man has become afraid of awe. That's why in language, in the ancient days, 'awful'
was a religious word, very sacred. Now, when you are feeling terrible you say you are feeling awful. Even the word has changed its meaning. People used to be awful when they were deep in prayer, when they were in close contact with the divine. When the divine was revealed to them, then they used to be awful. Now when they are feeling terrible, horrible, very bad, they say, "I am feeling awful." The word has completely been destroyed. It used to be at the peak; now it is at the bottom. It used to be the most positive feeling; now it is the most negative feeling. How has it happened? There are some reasons for it.
Whenever people used to feel awe, they also used to feel fear. That is natural, because through awe you come in contact with the unknown, unfamiliar, the strange, the mysterious. You cannot control it, you cannot manipulate, you cannot possess it.
Suddenly, something bigger than you, something vaster than you surrounds you, and you are at a loss. Fear arises; you start feeling afraid.
All the old religions describe God as both 'the mysterium' and 'the tremendum' -- mysterium because He is the mystery, a mystery that can never be solved, and tremendum because one feels terrible before Him. These two feelings arise together, but you should pay attention to the first feeling more. Otherwise, the doors of the temple will be closed for you. Emphasize the positivity of it, and learn how to be in the presence of the unknown, how to be in the presence of something that you cannot manipulate, how to be in the presence of something where you have to surrender, where surrender is the only thing that you can do, that can be done -- that's all that's possible.
You should feel blessed; but you must be feeling afraid, hence the question. You must be paying more attention to the negative part, to the shadow part. If you do that, by and by, you will become closed. Then you will not feel awe, and if you cannot feel awe you cannot feel God.
They say philosophy arises out of wonder. It is right, absolutely right. Philosophy arises out of wonder; and religion? -- religion arises out of awe. And what is the difference between wonder and awe?
When you are full of wonder, you try to find a clue; how to dissolve that wonder? You try to think about it, figure out what it is. Wonder creates a question-mark in you, and you start struggling with it -- so philosophy is a fight with wonder. It arises out of wonder, then it tries to dissolve the wonder, to dissolve the inexpressible, the unexplainable, to find an explanation so the wonder can be dropped. Wonder is felt like a dis-ease, a tension. So the philosopher is continuously trying ways and means to be again at ease. He is trying to find some answer so the questions can be dropped, so the mystery is no more a mystery. Philosophy is against wonder.
Religion arises out of awe. Awe is also wonder with one different quality: that is, it does not create a question mark in you. Rather,.it creates deep love, it creates deep gratitude, it creates humbleness. It creates such a state in your consciousness that you would like to bow down before it. It is not a question to be solved, but a deep mystery to be respected.
You would like to kneel down and pray. You would not like to think about it because it is so vast; it is impossible to think about it. You would like to pray; you would like to fall into it in deep love.
Wonder becomes awe when it does not create a question-mark in you; awe becomes wonder if it creates a question-mark in you. That's the difference between philosophy and religion, and then the paths go diametrically opposite. A philosopher goes on thinking and thinking, and a religious person goes on dropping thinking.
God enters into you through awe.
"I always yearn to be here, but why, on seeing you, am I filled with awe?"
That's how it should be. If you are not filled with awe, then your coming to me is pointless. If you don't feel like praying, if you don't feel like bowing down, surrendering, then you have not come to me. Physically you may be here; spiritually we exist far apart.
It happens many times: every day I watch many people who yet have a living heart in them start feeling awe, but they start repressing it. It feels as if it is a kind of weakness and you are not to show it. If they want to cry, they stop their tears. They have come with many questions to ask and suddenly those questions are not there -- because in an awful mood, questioning stops. They forget their questions. And they are very worried about where their questions have gone, and they start searching hectically inside to find something to cling to so that awe does not become too overpowering. Sometimes they ask foolish questions, just to ask, so that nobody becomes aware that they have lost their grounding, that they have fallen into something deep, that they have not been strong enough to resist -- but then they miss. Then they come to me, and yet, they come not.
Coming to me, be ready. It is not a question of asking questions. In fact, there is no need.
Just being with me, just being close with me...fall in line with me, breathe with me, let your heart beat with me a little while so that you can see through my eyes, so that you can taste a little of that with which I am completely overtaken and possessed.
But fear will arise -- because whenever there is something bigger than your mind, the mind says, "Don't move; there can be danger. You may not be able to come back." And the mind says, "It is almost mad, retain your intelligence, retain your thinking capacity, retain your logic." What are you going to do? And you all have been trained for logic, and nobody has been in any way trained for love. That feeling of awe is simply trying to assert something from your heart that has been repressed by the society, by the forces that are trying to control you, by the mind.
Mind is nothing but society inside you: the priest, the politicians, the power-mad people - - they have become your mind. They are trying to manipulate you from within. When awe arises, you are falling into an infinite ocean, not knowing what will happen next. In that moment you would like to escape, you would like to close your eyes, you would like to somehow control yourself -- because you have always been told that control is a great value. So you go on controlling everywhere, where it is not needed at all, where it is a hindrance to life. Where it is almost a suicide, there too you go on controlling. You cannot trust, because trust means losing your controlling to somebody else's hands. You cannot surrender, you cannot love, you cannot pray. Even people making love cannot surrender; they go on controlling deep down. Hence, the real peak is missed. They learn techniques of how to make love. They can become very efficient lovemakers, but love is missed -- because it has nothing to do with you.
Love happens only when you are not there. Love happens only when you are surrendered to existence. Then there is a great orgasmic experience. Then you reach to the very peak of your being, and you look at existence from the top-most peak of the Himalayas; you look from the GOURISHANKAR. Then a totally different vision arises, and that vision transforms your life.
So when you come to me, be ready to lose control, be ready to lose yourself. That is the whole purpose of coming; otherwise, don't come. Even if you ask something, don't ask out of your knowledge. Your asking should also be out of your love. Your asking should also be how to go deeper in the mystery -- not how to demystify it, not how to explain it, but how to move deeper and deeper into the eternally unexplained -- because that's what God is.
So have a little taste of God with me. Allow me to be a door.
It will be difficult for you to face God directly, the Whole, because it will be too much, too dazzling. You cannot look at the sun directly; it will destroy your eyes. That's the meaning of a Master: he gives you God in quantities that you can bear. He gives you God in homeopathic doses, and he goes on increasing the dosage, by and by. The more you become capable of absorbing, the more he gives to you. One day, when you are ready to face the sun directly, he simply disappears. He is no longer between you and God.
It is just as you start learning swimming: first you learn in shallow water, just on the bank. It's natural, it is intelligible, it is practical. Then as you are becoming more and more capable, you start moving towards the deeper parts of the river. One day you are ready to go into the ocean.
When you come to me, allow me to be there rather than insisting for your own presence.
You dissolve; let me be there. You open your doors and windows and allow me to pass through you. Much will happen that way. Nothing is going to happen through your questions because they are nothing of worth -- irritations in the mind. But I always see that whenever people feel full of awe, they start defending themselves. Then they undo the whole purpose. Don't defend. If you defend, then how am I going to help you? -- there is no way. I cannot help you against you; I can help you only with your deep cooperation. If you participate, only then can the journey start.
But many times I have felt it -- many people would like to go on the journey, but when it starts, they start clinging to the place where they are standing. They don't want to lose their ground; but then, how can the journey start? You have to go on losing that which you have to attain that which you don't have.
Jesus has said, "Those who want to follow me, they should deny everything, including themselves. They should deny themselves"...and he is right, but it takes a long time.
Between a Master and a disciple, that which can happen right this moment takes much time because the disciple goes on defending in many ways, rationalizing in many ways.
The Bauls say, Look...
Look for Him in the temple of your limbs; He is there as the Lord of the world -- speaking, singing in enchanting tunes.
He is an expert at hide-and-seek; no one can see Him.
Do not try to catch Him, O my heart!
He can never be caught -- you can only hope for Him in whole faith.
When you are deep in awe -- and if you are courageous enough to remain in it -- soon your consciousness will have a tremendous shift, a one-hundred-eighty degree turn. If you can remain in awe for a few moments without disrupting it, without corrupting it with your thoughts, your defences, your rationalizations; if you can remain purely in it -- not doing anything about it, just being in it -- there will be a turn That's what Christians call conversion. It doesn't mean that a Hindu becomes a Christian; that is foolish. It doesn't mean that a Christian becomes a Hindu.'Conversion' means: a great turning in your consciousness. If you can remain with me for a few moments, just in pure awe -- not corrupting it in any way, not doing anything whatsoever; just being in it, allowing it to be -- there will be a shift, a one-hundred-eighty degree turn, a conversion. Suddenly, I will disappear and you will be face to face with your own being. The God is hiding within you.
Iook for Him in the temple of your limbs; He is there as the Lord of the world -- speaking, singing in enchanting tunes.
He is an expert at hide-and-seek; no one can see Him..
... because the very effort to see Him separates you from Him. The very effort to see Him makes Him an object, and He is not an object; He is your subjectivity. He cannot be reduced to being a thing -- He is not. He is not the sought, He is the seeker. He is your consciousness, your purity of consciousness. He is your inner sky. You cannot see Him because He is hiding within you.
There is a beautiful parable:
When God created the world, He used to live here on this earth, but there was great trouble for Him. He was not even able to sleep, because complaints and complaints. And the whole day He was trying to solve people's problems, and in the night also they were knocking on His door. And there were so many suggestions to improve upon the world that He started becoming almost insane. It looked as if nothing was going right -- millions of advisers -- and He was fed up. If He listened to one man's advice, there were a thousand and one against it. It was very difficult to do anything. He asked His counsellors, His advisers, "What to do?" He said, "I would like to hide somewhere."
Somebody suggested, "Why don't you go to GOURISHANKAR, Everest. Nobody will ever be able to come there; you can make your abode there."
He said, "You don't know the future. Just within few minutes -- for God it is only few minutes, our centuries are seconds for Him -- just within a few minutes, this man Hilary will reach, and then the same trouble will start."
And somebody said, "Why not the moon?"
He said, "That too is only a question of few minutes. Soon, man will be walking on the moon. It will not solve anything. It will at the most postpone a little."
Then one old counsellor came close to Him and told Him something in His ear. And He was very happy, and He said, "Right! This appears to be the perfect solution."
The old man suggested, "You hide in man himself. There he will never find you. And even if he finds, a man who is so wise to find you within himself will not create any trouble for you. Hilarys can create trouble, but Buddhas cannot -- because by the time they find you inside themselves they will be almost like you. They will not have any complaints, they will not have any question. They will be as silent as you are, they will be as deep as you are. By the time they reach you inside themselves, they will have been transformed. The very journey will become a mutation."
God is hiding within you, but you cannot see God there directly because you don't know how to go there.
One method, one way, is of meditation: start dropping your thoughts. One day when there is no thinking, no ripple, and you are a no-mind, you will reach there; the conversion will happen. Another way is of prayer.
The SANNYASIN who has asked is Rama Bharti. Her path is going to be that of prayer and love. That's why she feels so much awe. When she comes close to me, I have seen her almost tremble, as if some unknown breeze is passing through her. I have seen her throbbing with an unknown rhythm. Love is her path. She has to use this quality of awe; it is rare. Very few people have it; it is disappearing from the world.
People have become much too intellectual, much too hung-up in their heads. They have forgotten the language of the heart. Awe is the script, the very script of that language.
Feel it, allow it to possess you, be possessed by it. It will lead you to the innermost temple of your own being. There will be a conversion, and in that moment your consciousness will have a great shift. Suddenly, it will not be looking at me, it will start looking at itself. That is the only way to know God.
The second question:
WHEN YOU WERE A ZEN MASTER TELLING US TO CHOOSE OUR PATH AND STICK TO IT, I FELT SURE THAT MY PATH WAS OF THE HEAD, THAT I WOULD NEVER BE ABLE TO SURRENDER TO ANYONE. NOW, AFTER ONE LECTURE ON THE BAUL MYSTICS, I FEEL LIKE A LOVESICK SCHOOLGIRL.
HOW TO CHOOSE A PATH WHEN YOU HAVE NONE? HOW TO BE A LIGHT UNTO MYSELF WHEN YOUR LIGHT DAZZLES ME EVERY MORNING?
I can understand your difficulty, but it is being created knowingly. I will throw you from one path to another many times, because that is the only way for you to find out which is your path. Sometimes I will push you, pull you towards meditation; sometimes I will force you towardslove, prayer. You will need the taste of both; only then can you be decisive about it, otherwise not. Just by listening to me you cannot decide, because while you are listening to me you are too much impressed by me.
So this is part of the device: that one day I am speaking on meditation, another day I am speaking on love. I would like you to taste both because that taste will be decisive. Only that will decide which your path is where you feel really flowing, where you feel really spontaneous Where things happen on their own accord and you need not force them, that is your path -- but how to know it?
When you listen to me when I am talking about love you will be impressed by it, but that is not going to decide it. Just being impressed is not going to help. It is a sort of hypnosis.
When I am chanting and singing about love you will be hypnotized by it. You will start thinking, "Yes, this my path." But this is just a wave created by me. It may be your wave, it may not be your wave; and you cannot know it. And your whole life has been conditioned so much by others that you have become very impressionable. You immediately take the imprint from the outside. If you listen to me on meditation, you will be impressed by that. That' why ordinarily Masters have not done that which I am doing here. They only insist on one path continuously, for their whole lives. But then many people follow that path only -- because their Master has impressed them so much about it continuously and consistently that they follow. That may not be their path. Hence, my ABSOLUTELY new effort.
I will be talking on all sorts of paths and all sorts of methods In the beginning it will be very confusing, but that is meant to be so. I would like to confuse you so much that you forget all about being impressed by anybody. My whole effort is to throw you to yourself.
How long can you go on doing this? -- one day you are thinking of meditation, an then I talk about love; you start thinking about love. Again I will talk about meditation, and again the problem will arise. How long are you going to be impressed by me? One day or other you will say, "Now I have to decide. This man will drive me crazy!"
J. Krishnamurti says, "Don't be impressed by anybody," but he is a very consistent man, VERY consistent. And his consistency becomes a deep imprint on his followers. He goes on saying,'Don't be impressed by anybody," but he has been saying that for forty years so consistently that people have even become impressed about it. They say, "Because Krishnamurti says,'Don't be impressed by anybody,' we are not going to be impressed by anybody" -- but this is the impression.
What I am doing is exactly what Krishnamurti is saying. I am doing it; he is simply saying it.
I will not allow you to be impressed. Even if you want, there is no way. I will change continuously: I will plant a few seeds today, tomorrow I will take them back. I will plant something today, tomorrow it will be gone. How long are you going to wait for me? One day you will say, "Wait! Now let me decide. Enough is enough!" But by that time you will have been shifted and shunted from this to that so much that you will have had glimpses of both. You must have tasted a little of love, prayer, a little of meditation, a little of yoga; a little of Meera and Chaitanya, and a little of Buddha and Mahavir. You will have tasted both, and then decision will arise in you. And that will not be because of me, that will be because of you. And when something is because of you it is real, it is authentic; it transforms, it transfigures, it transports you into another world. If it is just an impression, because I have been consistently telling you about something again and again and again, then it becomes just a suggestion deeply implanted within your mind. You may think that you have decided, but it is not your decision.
Krishnamurti has never asserted a single contradiction. He simply goes on repeating the same thing. His note is simple, clear; there is nothing confused about him. Either you agree with him or you don't agree with him -- that is another thing -- but there is nothing to be confused about. Nobody can say that he is confusing. You can say he is right or you can say he is wrong, but not that he is confusing.
You cannot say about me whether I am right or whether I am wrong. At the most, you can say that I am confusing. But that is my whole device: to confuse you so much. How long can you allow me to shift from this to that, from that to this? One day you are going to shout, "Keep your hands away! Now I want to decide"; and that decision will come out of you. And that will come not only because of intellectual conviction, it will come because of real experiences on both the paths. When you have tasted all, you can decide easily. And then you can remain with that decision for your whole life.
If you are impressed by me and then you decide, you can be impressed by somebody else tomorrow, and then you will decide that. And if you are impressionable for me, you are impressionable for anybody else. That's how people go from one Master to another.
Here there is no need to go anywhere because I am all the Masters together. You can just remain here and the Master changes; there is no need to go anywhere. I consistently contradict myself, so there is no problem. You need not go anywhere; you can just remain where you are.
People go on changing Masters because one day something impresses you and you are over-enthusiastic about it, and then there is a honeymoon -- but honeymoons end.
Anything that begins has to end. After a few days the enthusiasm is gone. Now the thing seems to be familiar. The enthusiasm was because of the unfamiliar, because it was new.
Try to understand this mechanism.
You fall in love with a woman because she is so new: the physiology, the proportions of her body, the face, the eyes, the eyebrows, the color of her hair, the way she walks, the way she turns, the way she says hello, the way she looks. Everything is new, the whole territory unknown. You would like to investigate this territory; it is inviting, it is very inviting. You are caught, hypnotized. And when you start approaching, she starts to run away; that is part of the game. The more she runs, the more enchanting she becomes. If she simply says, "Yes, I am ready," half of the enthusiasm will be dead that very moment.
In fact, you will start thinking how to run away. So, she gives you a chance to chase her.
People are never as happy as while the courting continues -- very happy -- because it is a chase. Man is basically a hunter, so when the woman is chased, running away, trying to hide here and there, avoiding, saying no, the man gets more and more hot. The challenge becomes intense; the woman has to be conquered. Now he is ready to die for her, or do whatsoever is needed, but the woman has to be conquered. He has to prove that he is no ordinary man.
But once they are married, then everything...because the whole interest was in the chase, the whole interest was in the unfamiliar, the whole interest was that the woman was apparently unconquerable. But now she is conquered; now how can that old interest remain? At the most one can pretend, but the old interest cannot remain. Things start becoming cold. They start getting bored with each other because now there are other women who are again new territories: they attract, they invoke, they call forth.
The same happens with thoughts: you are enchanted with one sort of thinking, but by the time you become acquainted with it the honeymoon is over, the love is over. Now you would like to be interested in something else, something new that again gives you a thrill, a kick. This way one goes from one woman to another, from one man to another, from one thinking to another thinking, from one path to another path, from one Master to another Master. This sort of searching will never allow you time enough to create trust.
In one aboriginal community of India in the very primitive parts of Madhya Pradesh, in Bastar, there lives a tribe -- aboriginals, very old people, primitive, almost three or four thousand years old. They are not contemporaries at all but something can be learned from them. One thing has happened in that community that has never happened before anywhere else, and that is: once a man marries a woman there is never any divorce.
Divorce is allowed, but never has divorce happened. And once a man marries a woman, he remains truly with her, and the woman remains truly with him. He never becomes again interested in any other woman in any other way, and the woman never becomes interested in any other man. How have they managed this miracle? They have managed very psychologically.
The structure of their society is such that every boy and every girl is allowed to meet and mix with every other boy and girl. So every boy comes to know each girl of the community, and each girl comes to know each boy of the community. In fact, by the time boys and girls are getting interested in the other sex, they don't stay in their homes in the night. They have a small temple-like thing just in the middle of the village; they call it GHOTUL -- a youth house.
Once a boy becomes interested in girls he has to go to stay in the GHOTUL; once a girl starts becoming interested in the boys, she has to go to live in the GHOTUL. In the GHOTUL they live, all the boys of the village and all the girls of the village, and they make love to each other. Only one thing is insisted upon: the superintendent of the ghotul insists that no boy and girl should remain with each other more than three days. They should change, so that before their marriage time comes they have known everybody; then they can decide.
When you know all the women of your community and decide, that decision is totally different than the decision that is taken in civilized societies. You don't know other women; a better woman, a better man is always possible. Then what will you do? A more interesting personality can always be there; then there will be disruption, there will be distraction, there will be problems. These are small village communities: not many people -- two hundred, three hundred people, at the most, in one community. Every boy is allowed to know each girl. When he has known all the girls and all the girls have known all the boys, and then one girl and one boy decide to get married, before marriage happens they are given one more year to be together, to finally decide -- because to decide before knowing each other well is dangerous. The decision may be only because they want to know each other well. But once they have known each other well, then what will happen to their decision? So they have to know each other well for one year, two years; whatsoever time they need, they can be together. There is no interference on them by the society.
But once they decide to get married, of course that decision is very, very solid, absolute, unconditional -- because all conquering is gone, hunting is gone, chasing is gone. The honeymoon is before marriage in that community, and that seems to be more logical, psychological, more true to the human mind. The honeymoon is before the marriage.
Marriage has to happen only when the honeymoon is over. When two persons, knowing each other well, decide to be together, now it is not a question of conquering. It is not a question of novelty. It is not that they decide for marriage because they want to know each other; they decide for marriage because they know each other. This is totally different.
But that GHOTUL and the system of those communities is disappearing. They are being civilized by us, forced, because this seems to be immoral. At least for Christians, Hindus, Jains, it seems immoral. Their community is being destroyed; their GHOTUL is thought to be like a house of prostitution. So they are being taught against their experience: they are being taught to destroy GHOTULS and to stop this 'immoral' situation.
But man seems to be absolutely foolish. They are not immoral people; they are very moral people, very natural people. But Christians are there working and trying to convert them into Christians. They have converted many of those poor people into Christians.
Now GHOTULS are disappearing, and there, one of the most solid systems is being destroyed. In fact, we should learn something from them.
My whole device is to give you all the chances possible for spiritual growth so that you can have a feel for the right path. And that feel has to come through you. It has not to come through me, it has not to come through my, influence.
There are two ways not to influence you: one way is not to speak, to disappear somewhere so nobody can come close. Many people have done that too, but that doesn't seem to work. It has no compassion in it. The other way is to communicate to you, to say to you what I have attained, what I have known, what I have tasted. That has been done, but then people become impressed. They become so impressed that they are almost dragged out of their natures That too is dangerous. Maybe a hundred persons are influenced -- then ten, fifteen, at the most twenty, will reach to the goal. Eighty will be going against their nature.
My effort is to make you available to all possibilities and to make all possibilities available to you so you can move, you can change, you can have your own time, at your own pace. And then one day a feeling will arise, and tha. feeling will be totally yours. It will have nothing to do with me. Then you have come to a point where marriage happens:
then you are married to a particular path.
I will continue talking about other paths, but from that moment you will listen to me, you will love me, you will be grateful to me, but if I am saying something which goes against your path you will not choose it, you will not be impressed by it. If something fits on your path you wil choose, but the decision will be your chosen path. Now anything that fits with it you will take in; anything tha doesn't fit you will not take in. And you will not say, "That is wrong"; you know that on some other path it fits, so I may be right for somebody else.
But once you have chosen your path, whatsoever I say, you will be able to choose. You will become a chooser you will have an inner criterion -- what fits, what does no fit.
I am here for many sorts of people. I am not one dimensional; I am here for all sorts of people, and I am speaking to all of them. By and by, listening to me, being attentive to me, you will go on deciding by your feeling. Then I will continue to speak; you will love to listen, you will love to understand, but you will not be distracted. Once you are married you will not be distracted. Then there is no divorce.
"When you were a Zen Master telling us to choose our path and stick to it, I felt that my path was of the head, that I would never be able to surrender to anyone. Now, after one lecture on the Baul mystics, I feel like a lovesick schoolgirl. How to choose a path when you have none? How to be a light unto myself when your light dazzles me every moming?"
One day you will be saturated with it. One day, one morning you will arise in your own being, alert to your needs, alert to your direction. Once that direction is understood, recognized, then there will be no problem. But one has to wait for it; it takes time. And before it happens I will have to shift you, turn you, shunt you from here and there.
Sorry, but I have to do it.
The Bauls say, Blind one, how can you stumble on a straight spontaneous path?
Be spontaneous in your own self and find the way that is born in you.
That's what I am trying to do here -- I am a midwife. I'm not going to create something for you; it is already being created in your womb. It is already being created in your innermost shrine. At the most, I can help it to be born smoothly. At the most, if something goes wrong I can help you to remove the obstacle. But the child has been getting ready in you; I am just a midwife....
Once you have found your child, your direction, then the path is very spontaneous.
Blind one, how can you stumble on a straight spontaneous path?
Be spontaneous in your own self, and find the way that is born in you Words of wisdom describing God can reveal us riches in a darkened room.
Seeking in darkness is confusing.
Break the barriers and look at the sky; the formless is held as a beautiful form in the arms of the moon.
I go on describing about the wealth, treasures, but your eyes are full of darkness. My description impresses you; greed arises in you. You would also like to become a possessor of great treasures -- but your eyes are full of darkness. Even if the treasure is right in front of you and I am describing it to you, you are impressed by my description but you are not aware of the treasure Iying just in front of you. My description is not going to help.
Words of wisdom describing God can reveal us riches in a darkened room.
Seeking in darkness is confusing.
Break the barriers and look at the sky; the formless is held as a beautiful form in the arms of the moon.
So don't be too impressed by my words, and don't start feeling very sure while listening to me. But I know it is natural, it is human. Many times you will feel sure: "This is my path"; but next day it will change. So become a little unsure about your sureness. Hesitate a little. When I was talking on Zen you felt sure: "This is my path." Now I am talking about Bauls -- remember, tomorrow I may be talking about something else, so this time at least don't feel so sure. Listen to me, but don't give surety to what is heard. Wait, there is no hurry. Be patient, go on listening and trying, but don't feel sure because your surety is dangerous. Feel sure only when your child is born, when you have a sense of direction.
And you will be able to see the difference, because it is so tremendously different. It will not be because of me. You will be able to see now that it is not that you are impressed by me; there is nothing like impression. Suddenly a great upsurge, a great energy has happened in you, and it is absolutely certain. But you will be able to see that it is not because of any influence from my side. Sometimes it may even happen contrary to what I am saying. Sometimes -- it is possible if you have been shifted too many times from one path to another -- I am talking about love, and listening to me about love a great certainty will arise in you that, "This is not my path; my path is meditation," or vice versa. It is difficult to say how you will be able to make sure that this is not the surety coming by influence, but your own. But I know that you will be able to do it.
It is exactly like when you have a headache: you know. You don't ask anybody, "Please tell me when I have a headache. How am I going to know that it is a headache, that I am really having it?" No, you will know. When the real certainty arises, it is so clear, so crystal-clear -- like a pillar of light; and just by its arising you are washed clean.
Just by its arising you feel a new being, altogether new, a new birth. It is not intellectual, it is not in the head. You will feel it all over your body, all over your body, all over your mind, all over your heart. Your totality will feel it. When that certainty arises, then it is faith, then it is trust. By being influenced, whatsoever you get is nothing but a belief. A belief is a very impotent thing;.it never changes anybody.
The third question:
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE FOLLOWING: THINKING AND UNDERSTANDING, REACTION AND RESPONSE, BELIEF AND FAITH, SYMPATHY AND COMPASSION, COMMUNICATION AND COMMUNION?
Thinking is the absence of understanding. You think because you don't understand. When understanding arises, thinking disappears. It is like a blind man groping his way; when eyes are there you don't grope for the way, you see it. Understanding is like eyes; you see it, you don't grope. Thinking is groping. Not knowing what is what, you go on thinking, guessing. Thinking cannot give you the right answer because thinking can only repeat that which is known. Thinking has no vision for the unknown.
Have you ever tried thinking about the unknown? How will you think? You can think only that which you know; it is repetitive. You can go on thinking it again and again, you can make new combinations of old thoughts, but nothing really is new.
Understanding is fresh, new. It has nothing to do with the past. Understanding is here, now. It is an insight into reality.
With thinking there are questions and questions and no answers. Even sometimes when you feel that you have found an answer, it is just because one has to decide some way or other. It is not really the answer, but you have to decide for action so some answer has to be clung to. And if you look deeply into your answer, you will see a thousand and one questions arising out of it. Understanding has no questions but only answers, because it has eyes.
Thinking is borrowed. All your thoughts are given by others to you. Watch -- can you find a single thought that is yours, authentically yours, that you have given birth to? They are all borrowed. The sources may be known or unknown, but they are all borrowed. The mind functions like a computer, but before the computer can give you any answer you have to feed it. You have to supply all the information; then it will give you the answer.
That's what mind has been doing.
Mind is a biocomputer. You go on collecting data, knowledge, information, and then when a certain question arises your mind supplies the answer out of that collection. It is not a real response; it is just out of the dead past.
What is understanding? -- understanding is pure intelligence. That pure intelligence is originally yours; you are born with it. Nobody can give you intelligence. Knowledge can be given to you, not intelligence. Intelligence is your own sharpened being. Through deep meditation one sharpens one's being; through meditation one drops borrowed thoughts, reclaims one's own being, reclaims one's originality, redaims one's childhood, innocence, freshness. Out of that freshness, when you act, you act out of understanding. And then the response is total, here-now; and the response is because of the challenge, not because of the past.
For example: somebody asks you a question -- what do you do? You immediately go inside the mind and find out the answer. You immediately go into the basement of the rnind where you have collected all knowledge, and find the answer there. Then it is thinking. Somebody asks a question and you become silent; you look into the question with penetrating eyes; not into the memory, but into the question. You face the question, you encounter the question. If you don't know you say you don't know.
For example: somebody asks whether God exists or not. You immediately say, "Yes, God exists." From where is this answer coming? -- from your memory? Christian memory, Hindu memory, Muslim memory? Then it is almost useless, futile. If you have a communist memory you will say, "No, there is no God." If you have a Catholic memory you will say, "Yes, there is God." If you have a Buddhist memory you will say, "There is no God." But these answers are coming from the memory. If you are a man of understanding you will simply listen to the question, you will go deep into the question, you will simply watch. If you don't know, you will say, "I don't know." If you know, only then will you say you know. And when I say 'if you know', I mean, if you have realized.
A man of understanding is true. Even if he says, "I don't know," his ignorance is more valuable than the knowledge of the mind, because at least his ignorance, his acceptance of the ignorance is closer to truth. At least he is not trying to pretend, he is not a hypocrite.
Watch, and you will see that all your answers come from your memory. Then try to find out a way where memory does not function and pure consciousness functions. That is what understanding is.
I have heard....
A doctor stepped into the patient's room. Five minutes later he came out and asked for a corkscrew, then he went back to his patient. In another five minutes he was out again and demanded a chisel and hammer.
The distraught husband couldn't stand it any longer. He pleaded, "For heaven's sake, doctor, what is wrong with my wife?"
"I don't know yet," the doctor replied. "I can't get my bag opened."
Even sometimes when you say, "I don't know," it is not necessary that it may be coming out of understanding. It may be simply that you can't open your bag. It may be that you cannot open your memories, or you are not able to find something in the memory; you need time. You say, "I don't know"; you say "Give me time, let me think about it." What will you do by thinking? If you know, you know; if you don't know, you don't know.
What are you going to think about? But you say, "Give me time, I will think about it."
What are you saying? You are saying, "Give me a little, time; I will have to go into the basement of my mind and search. And there is such rubbish accumulated through the years that it is difficult to find, but I will try."
Meditate, and become free from this basement. It is not that the basement is not useful; it can be used. But it should not become a substitute for your understanding.
A man of understanding looks into things directly. His insight is direct, but he can use all his accumulation to help the insight to reach you. He can use all his accumulation to make everything that he is trying to convey to you clear. But that which he is trying to convey is his own. Words may be borrowed, language may be borrowed -- has to be borrowed -- concepts may be borrowed, but not what he is trying to convey to you. The container will come from the memory, but the contents will be his insight.
And of course, a man who has no understanding is continuously a victim of so many thoughts, because he has no one insight to give him a center. He has a crowd of thoughts, unrelated to each other, even diametrically opposite to each other, contradicting each other, with deep antagonism towards each other. He has a crowd -- not even a group, not even a society, but a mob of thoughts buzzing inside the mind. So if you go on with your thinking too far, one day you will become mad. Too much thought can create insanity.
In primitive societies madness is rare. The more civilized a society is, the more people go insane. Even in civilized societies, more people go insane who work with their intellects.
This is unfortunate but this is a fact: that more psychoanalysts go mad than in any other profession. Why? -- too much thinking. It is very difficult to manage so many contradictory thoughts together. In managing them, your whole being becomes unmanaged, becomes a chaos.
Understanding is single, understanding is central. It is simple; thoughts are very complex.
A henpecked husband visited a psychiatrist and said he had a recurring nightmare.
"Every night," he said. "I dream I am shipwreck with twelve beautiful women."
"What is so terrible about that?" asked the psychiatrist "Have you ever tried cooing for twelve women?"
That was his problem: how to 'coo' twelve women Even to coo one woman is difficult.
Thinking is like cooing for thousands and thousands of women around you. One naturally goes mad. Understanding is very simple: you are married to one insight, but that insight works like a light, a torch. Wherever you focus your torch, mysteries are revealed.
Wherever you focus your torch, darkness disappears.
Try to find your hidden understanding, and the way is to drop thinking. And to drop thinking two are the possibilities: either meditation or love.
The second: 'reaction and response'.
Reaction is from the thoughts and response is understanding. Reaction comes from the past; response is always in the present. But ordinarily we react -- we have everything already ready inside.
Somebody is doing something and we react as if button has been pushed. Somebody insults you -- you be come angry. That has happened before. It has been happening the same all the while. It has become almost like a button: somebody pushes it, you become angry. There is not a single moment of waiting, not a single moment where you look at the situation -- because the situation may be different. The person who is insulting you may be right. He may have simply revealed a truth to you; that's why you feel insulted.
Or, he may be absolutely wrong, or he may be nasty person -- but you have to look into the person. If he is right, you have to thank him because he has shown some thing to you -- he has shown compassion towards you. He has been friendly by bringing a truth to your heart. Maybe it hurts, but that is not his fault. Or, he is simply stupid ignorant: not knowing anything about you he has blurted something out. Then there is no need to be angry; he is simply wrong. Nobody is worried about something which is absolutely wrong. Unless it has some truth in it, you are never irritated by it. You can laugh at it, at the whole absurdity of it. It is ridiculous.
Or, the person is nasty and that is his way. He is being insulting to everybody. So he is not doing anything to you in particular; he is simply being himself -- that's all. So in fact, nothing is needed to be done. That man is that type.
Somebody insulted Buddha. His disciple Ananda asked him, "I was getting very angry and you kept quiet. You should have at least allowed me; I would have put him right."
Buddha said, "You surprise me. First he surprised me, now you surprise me. Whatsoever he was saying is simply irrelevant. It is unconnected with us, so why get into it? But you surprise me more: you have become very annoyed, you look angry. This is foolish. To punish oneself for somebody else's error is foolish. You are punishing yourself. Cool down. There is no need to be angry -- because anger is fire. Why are you burning your own soul? If he has committed some mistake, why do you punish yourself? It is stupid"...but we react.
I have heard....
One man was saying to one of his friends, "To please my wife, I have given up smoking, drinking, and playing cards."
"That must make her very happy," said his friend.
"No, it has not. Now, every time she begins to talk to me, she can't think of anything to say."
People live mechanical,-robot-like lives. If your wife has been continuously nagging you to stop smoking, and you think that she will be happy if you stop, you are wrong. If you smoke she is unhappy, if you stop smoking she will be unhappy, because then she will not find any excuse to nag you.
One woman has said to me that she doesn't want her husband to be perfect. I asked, "Why?" She said, "Because I love nagging." If the husband is perfect what are you going to do? You will be simply at a loss.
Watch yourself, watch others, and see how they are behaving in a mechanical way:
unconscious, like somnambulists, sleepwalkers.
Reaction is of the mind; response is of the no-mind.
Belief and faith? -- again the same: belief is of the mind, of the thinking; faith is of no- mind, of awareness, understanding.
It happened in a hillside village: the hunter said to his guide, "This seems to be a very dangerous cliff. It is a wonder they don't put up a warning sign."
"They had one up for two years," the native guide admitted, "but no one fell over so they took it down."
Belief is blind -- you believe because you have been taught to believe -- but it never goes very deep because it has no understanding of the situation. It is just a superfluous tag, just something added to you. It has not grown from you, it has not been a growth. It is just borrowed, so it never penetrates your being. A few days you carry it, and then seeing that it is useless, nothing is happening, you put it aside. There are Christians who are not Christians; there are Hindus who are not Hindus. They are Hindus only because of those beliefs that they have never used, those beliefs that have never been given any respect by them. They think they are Christians, Hindus, Mohammedans, but how can you be a Mohammedan if you have not lived your belief?
But belief cannot be lived. If one starts becoming more alert, watching life, responding, then by and by a faith arises. Faith is yours; belief is somebody else's. Drop beliefs so that faith can arise. And don't be satisfied with beliefs, otherwise faith will never arise.
Sympathy and compassion....
The same; the questioner has asked the same thing again and again.
Sympathy is of the mind: you feel somebody is in trouble, somebody is in misery; you think somebody is in misery and you have to help. You have been taught to help, to be of service, to be dutiful, to be a good human being, to be a good citizen, to be this and that.
You have been taught; you feel sympathy. Compassion has nothing to do with your teachings. Compassion arises as an empathy, not as a sympathy. Compassion arises when you can see the other person as he is, and when you can see him so totally that you start feeling him. You start feeling in the same situation.
It happened: A few people were beating a fisherman. Ramakrishna was moving from one bank to another of the Ganges, near Dakshineshwar. On the other shore a few people were beating a man. Ramakrishna was in the middle of the stream. He started crying and weeping, and he started shouting, "Stop, don't beat me!" People who were sitting around him, his disciples, could not believe what was happening: "Who is beating you? Who can beat him?" They said, "What are you saying, PARAMAHANSADEVA? Have you gone mad?" He said, "Look! They are beating me there on the other side." Then they looked; a few persons were beating a man, and Ramakrishna said, "Look at my back." He uncovered his back -- there were marks, blood was coming out. It was impossible to believe. They went, they rushed to the other shore, caught hold of the man who was beaten. They uncovered his back: exactly the same marks.
This is empathy -- putting oneself into somebody else's place so totally that what is happening to him starts happening to you. Then compassion arises. But these states are all of no-mind.
Communication and communion....
Communication is of the mind: verbal, intellectual, conceptual. Communion is of no- mind, of deep silence; a transfer of energy, non-verbal; a jump from one heart to another - - immediate, without any medium.
The basic, most essential thing to remember is -- because it divides your life, it divides the whole world into two worlds -- that if you are looking through a screen of thoughts, then you live in one world: the world of belief, thinking, sympathy. If you are looking with clean eyes, unclouded eyes, your perception has a clarity: pure, just seeing into things as they are, not projecting anything upon them. Then you have understanding, then you have meditation. Then the whole world changes. And the problem is that mind can deceive you. It creates sympathy. It creates pseudo coins: for compassion it creates sympathy. Sympathy is a pseudo coin. For communion, it has only communication, which is a pseudo coin. For faith, it has belief, which is a pseudo coin.
Remember it -- mind tries to substitute. You are lacking something? -- mind tries to substitute it. Be very alert, because whatsoever mind can do is going to be false. Mind is the great falsifier, the greatest deceiver there is. It helps, it tries to console you, it gives you something.
For example: if in the day you have fasted, in the night you dream of foods, resting in great hotels, or being invited to the palaces of the kings and eating beautiful food. Why? - - the whole day you have been hungry, now it is difficult to sleep because of hunger; the mind creates a substitute, a dream. Have you not watched?
In the night your bladder is full and you would like to go to the bathroom, but sleep will be disturbed -- the mind immediately creates a dream that you are in the bathroom. Then you can go on sleeping. It gives you a substitute. The substitute is conciliatory; it is not real -- but for the time being it helps.
So beware of mind's consolations. Seek reality, because only reality can fulfill.
Consolations will only post-pone; they can never be fulfilling. You can eat as much food as you like in the night in your dream, you can enjoy the fragrance of it, the taste of it, the color of it, everything, but it is not going to be nourishing. The one thing that is not going to happen: it cannot nourish. Belief can give you the whole fragrance of faith, the taste, the color. You can enjoy it but it will not nourish you. Only faith can nourish.
Always remember: that which nourishes you is real, and that which simply gives you a consolation is very dangerous. Because of this consolation you will not seek the real food. If you start living in dreams and you don't eat real food, then by and by, you will dissipate, disappear, become dry, and you will be dead.
So take immediate action: whenever mind is trying to give you a substitute, don't listen to it. It is a great salesman, a great seducer. It convinces you, and it says, "Those things are very cheap. Faith is very difficult to find because you will have to risk your life; belief is very easy, very cheap. You can get it for nothing." In fact, so many people are ready -- if you accept their belief they are ready to give you something more with it: become a Christian, become a Hindu, become a Mohammedan. People are ready to give you a great welcome and respect, respectability. Everything is available; just accept their belief.
Belief is not only cheap, it can even bring many more things with it.
Faith is dangerous, never cheap. You will have to put your whole life at stake. It needs courage, but only a courageous person can be religious.