Provisions for the journey

Fri, 8 November 1976 00:00:00 GMT
Book Title:
Discipline of Transcendence Vol 4
Chapter #:
am in Buddha Hall
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THE SEEKER has to go alone on his pilgrimage. Otherwise is not possible; it is not in the nature of things. Truth is not something outside you, otherwise you could go in company. It is within you. Truth is not objective, so it cannot be collective. It is subjective. Truth is subjectivity, it is your innermost core. Only you, and only you, can penetrate it; nobody else can go with you. The path has to be travelled in tremendous aloneness. And a Master knows it - that he is pushing you in a journey where you will be left alone - Buddha particularly is very much aware of it. He has not uttered a single word against it. He has never said, "I can lead you to the ultimate." You will have to go alone. The tour is going to be absolutely unguided, with no maps, with no guide to show you the path.

Then of course you have to be prepared for it. You have to provide for all emergencies, all accidents on the way, all possibilities for your going astray. You have to carry provisions for the journey. Buddha has called these provisions PARMITAS; the word is beautiful. PARMITA means: that which can lead you beyond; the provisions for the other shore. The journey is going to be alone. The moment you leave this shore you will be left alone in a great and wild ocean, and you will have to fight the ocean, and you will have to find the Way absolutely on your own. No knowledge that you have gathered before is going to be of any help, because each person comes to truth in his own way. The perception of truth is absolutely unique and individual. No two persons have known truth in the same way, because no two persons are ever the same. They are different: their vision is different, their perception is different, their interpretation is different, their expression is different. So all that you have gathered about truth is not going to help you much. In fact it may hinder you, but it cannot help you. It can become an obstacle.

So Buddha says: Don't carry knowledge. Then what does one have to carry with oneself? If the journey is going to be alone, then you have to create some qualities, PARMITAS, which can follow you like a shadow. These ten PARMITAS have to be understood very deeply.

The first PARMITA IS DANA: generosity, sharing. Ordinarily mind is a miser. It tries to hold, to possess. Mind is not generous. And if you go with this mind you will be lost - because a miser's mind is a very closed mind. Miserliness is a sort of closing in: you are not open to the world, you don't allow your windows and doors to bring more light from the outside, you don't allow your windows to bring new breezes from the outside - because you are constantly afraid that something you are holding inside may escape.

Mulla Nasrudin was standing the the court of the City Magistrate. And he was saying, "Now it is too much, and I cannot tolerate any more. We have a small room to live in, only one room. I live there, my wife lives there, my twelve children live there, and my wife is obsessive. She has a few goats in the room and a dog also sleeps there. And it is becoming so ugly and so dirty. It stinks! And I cannot live any more. So I have come to ask for a separation."

The magistrate said, "But don't you have any windows? Can't you open your windows?"

He said, "What! And let my pigeons out?"

When you are holding something you cannot open the windows, you cannot open the door; you will be afraid. And if you don't open the windows of the mind you will be in trouble - because when you are alone in the ocean, fighting with the waves, a closed mind will be a blind mind. You will need all openness there, because only out of openness can the response be right.

So Buddha says: DANA, generosity, sharing, has to be learned. While you are on this shore, learn as much sharing as possible. Share whatsoever you have to share, because nothing really belongs to you. Your possession is a crime.

Whatsoever you possess or claim that you possess is a crime against the whole.

You can, at the most, use, but you cannot claim possession. Things have existed when you were not here, things will be here when you are gone and completely forgotten. Who is the possessor? We come empty-handed, and we go empty- handed. So while you are in the world, don't become like fists; remain open- handed. An open-handed person is an open-minded person too. In fact, the hand is nothing but an extension of the mind.

The right side of your mind is joined with your left hand, the left side of your mind is joined with your right hand. When you move your right hand your mind moves, when you move your left hand the other side of your mind moves. When your hand is like a closed fist, then your mind is also closed like a fist. Yes, this expression 'open-handed' is beautiful: an openhanded man is also open-minded.

So Buddha says: The first PARMITA, the quality that can take you beyond, is sharing. He does not mention what to share, because it is not important what you share. Whether you share a song, or a dance, or you share your love, or you share your experience, your meditation, your money, your house, your clothes, your body; that is not the point. But sharing should become essential.

Ordinarily hoarding is essential. A hoarder will remain clinging to this shore; he cannot go to the other shore - because a hoarder, in the first place, cannot leave this shore. All his hoarding belongs to this shore. See the point of it. Somebody says, "Come, there is a bigger house," but you will say, "First I will have to carry the treasures which I have hidden in this house. I cannot go right now. I have much involvement with this house. My whole life's savings are here. I will have to take it with me; then only can I come." But the other shore is such that you cannot take anything from this shore.

This is a beautiful paradox: you cannot take anything from this shore, but if you are sharing enough, and if you share all that you have on this shore, you can carry a sharing mind. You cannot carry your house, you cannot carry your money, but you can carry your love, your compassion. And that compassion will be helpful.

Buddha says: If you have love and compassion in your heart, existence also behaves in the same way. Existence always reflects you. If you share, existence shares with you. If you are hoarding, that means you are against existence. A hoarder is against, he's afraid, he does not trust - "Who knows what is going to happen tomorrow?" He does not trust existence, he trusts his own bank balance.

His trust is in things that he has created or that he has accumulated. He is not trusting of the vast, of the infinite.

Buddha says: If you trust, then the existence also responds in the same way.

Existence is a mirror... it echoes you. If you go as a hoarder then you will be in trouble, because then everywhere you will see the enemy: in the waves of the ocean, in the infinite journey. A thousand and one problems will arise and you will be at a loss. There will be no guide, there will be no guidebook, and you will be alone, absolutely nude and alone, with no hoardings of your own, no securities, no insurance. It will be difficult for you to go.

Buddha says: You can go only when you have already dispossessed all that you have. Now, you can dispossess in two ways. You can dispossess only as a means, so that you can possess on the other shore - but that is not true dispossession, that is again just a trick of the mind. That's what many Buddhist monks, Jain monks, Catholics and others are doing. They are ready to renounce, but their renunciation is out of calculation. It is not out of love, it is out of calculation.

They calculate that nothing can be saved on this shore, so why not renounce it and save something on the other shore, in the other world? Money cannot be saved, it is going to go, so why not have virtue in your possession?

But the possessiveness remains the same.

Buddha says: Be non-possessive; possess neither on this shore nor the other. Be always sharing.

So there is a very specific teaching. Buddha has said to his disciples that when you meditate and you come to beautiful spaces in your being, immediately share them. If there is nobody, then just close your eyes and shower that blessing on the whole existence. But don't become a possessor of it - even of meditation, even of wisdom... don't become a possessor.

There is a beautiful anecdote.

A young man came to Buddha. He was attracted by Buddha's presence; by and by, he started meditating. But there was one problem. One day he came and he said, "There's only one problem - the problem is: you say that when meditation flowers, then you have to release all the fragrance to the whole world. I can do this with just one exception: I cannot shower it on my neighbor. I can do it on the whole of the world, but just give me permission not to shower it on my neighbor."

Buddha laughed and he said, "You fool, that is the whole point! You can shower it on the whole universe because you are indifferent to the whole universe. You cannot shower it on your neighbor because you have an enmity. Love knows no enmity. First you shower on your neighbor; only then will the universe receive it.

There is no other way. First shower on your enemy, first befriend your enemy, then the whole universe will befriend you."

That's the meaning when Jesus says: Love your enemy. Love thy enemy as thyself. Jesus also says: Love thy neighbor as thyself. Maybe, in almost all cases, the enemy and the neighbor are the same person. They are not different people, the neighbor and the enemy are almost always the same person - because he who is very far away from you cannot be your enemy. To be your enemy somebody has to be very close to you. To be an enemy somebody has to be just on the boundary of your being, has to be your neighbor. Then he pinches you, then his very existence becomes an anxiety, then he interferes, then his very existence is non-acceptable.

Buddha says: Shower your meditation, otherwise you have missed. Now, this is a very new teaching - Patanjali has not said so - this is a very new insight.

Buddha says: If you attain to meditative states, shower it immediately. If you don't shower it, then you have not attained to the space that you think you have attained. Then you are in a deception, you are tn an illusion - because a meditative state is, by its very nature, sharing. If you cannot share, then you must be in a deception somewhere. Then the state is pseudo, then the space is not real. A real meditative space, by its very nature, wants to be shared. If your meditation does not become compassion, then somewhere, something has gone wrong.

This is his first PARMITA, the quality on which you can ride and go to the other shore.

But ordinarily we live very clinging, afraid. Our attachments are more to things than to persons, and our attachments to persons are also very self-motivated.

There is no compassion in them.

So many people come to me and they say, "I am in love with this woman or with this man," and I look into them, and I see that they are in love only with themselves. Nobody seems to be in love with anybody else - hence so many problems. If you really love a woman or a man, love will be enough. There will be no problem out of it. Love knows no problems. If problems arise that simply shows that somewhere love is not true, or it is something else just pretending to be love. Everybody is trying to exploit the other. It is not a sharing thing; you are using the other as a means. Sooner or later the other starts feeling that too - that he or she is being used as a commodity - then there is rebellion, reaction, revenge, conflict.

People you call 'lovers' are continuously trying to dominate each other: we possess things, we possess people. And in this race, this mad race for possessions, we lose our own selves; one is lost in his possessions. If you really want to know who you are, you will have to become a little loose from your possessions.

A rabbi and a Catholic priest were fishing in separate boats some distance apart.

The priest got a bite and was so nervous that he fell out of the boat. He sank twice, and as he was coming up the second time, the rabbi rowed over and called out, "Father, can I have your boat if you don't come up again?"

We may not be so direct, but this is how we are: just waiting - how can we possess more? just waiting - how can our territory become a little bigger? Even if others suffer for it, even if they have to die for it, we are ready to sacrifice the whole world. For what? - for things which you will not be able to carry to the other shore. Death will come and shatter all your arrangements.

Buddha said: Before death takes things away from you, share them. At least there will remain some gratitude in people's hearts for you, at least they will remember you. Death will not be able to efface your memory completely. And by sharing you will become open. And by sharing you will become more trusting - and trust becomes the boat to the other shore. Trust people, because people are nothing but a manifestation of the universe, a manifestation of the universal soul.

When you share with somebody, in fact you are sharing with God - because EVERYBODY is a manifestation of God. When you water a tree and the tree feels happy, and the leaves seem to be delighted, and the tree starts swaying and dancing in the breeze, it is God you have watered. God was thirsty in the tree; you have watered, and God is happy.

Whatsoever you do to people, to trees, to animals, you are doing to existence.

And of course existence repays a thousandfold. When you are totally alone and there is nobody with you, only existence all around, it will repay you. Buddha says: This is the first PARMITA.

Oscar Muscovitz and Sidney Margolis had a profitable little business going, importing artificial flowers for the ladies' dress trade. Mainly, it was profitable due to their seldom, if ever, paying Uncle Sam taxes. But to their loft came, as it must to all men, the agents of the Internal Revenue Service. Finding Oscar in charge, as Sidney was on a buying trip, the first agent tried to explain the nature of the visit.

"Mr. Oscar, you people are doing business and failing to report to the government."

Oscar turned purple: "Report? What report? What is to report?" he demanded.

"Well," the agent replied, "first of all, we would like to know about your dependents, that is, your family exemptions."

Oscar proceeded to tell them all about Harriet, his wife, dependent number one, and all the trouble and aggravations she had been giving him lately; then he got to his son and described in great detail how Freddie had gotten this girl in trouble, and the ensuing problems from that scene; dependent number three, his daughter Marjorie, a good girl, but no beauty, and how much she was costing.

Finally, after absorbing as much of the detail of Oscar's private life as he could stand, the agent said, "Mr. Oscar, let us forget all that for a moment and concentrate on the business itself."

Replied Oscar, "Like what, exactly?"

"Like how much business you are doing, what the assets are worth, how much profit you made...."

"What!" screamed Oscar, hysterically. "Are you crazy? I don't even tell my partner that!"

You don't give, even to those who are very intimate with you. You don't give, even to those who love you. You don't give to your father, your mother, your wife, your children; you simply don't give. You don't know the language of giving. You know only one language: how to get more, how to get more, how to get from everybody else. You know only one way of thinking, and that is get- think.

Buddha says: Learn give-think. Learn the ways of giving and you will flower.

That flowering, that fragrance, will follow you. That will be one companion on the infinite pilgrimage.

The second is SHILA.

SHILA means discipline, SHILA means grace in living. Buddhists have misinterpreted SHILA in many ways; they think SHILA means a rigid character.

It does not mean that. The very word means: a graceful life, a life that has grace in it, elegance. And what life can have grace in it? - only a life of compassion, love, gratitude; only a life that is responsible, a life that cares for others. Now, you can be non-violent, but it is not necessary that your non-violence will be a grace. I have seen so many Jain monks: they are non-violent, but very ungraceful; the beauty is missing. And the fruit is the proof of the tree... and there is no other proof. If they were nonviolent there would arise a tremendous beauty: their eyes would show it, their very vibe would show it. There would be a constant soundless music around them - but it is not there. Everything seems to be dull and dead. They are nonviolent, but their non-violence is not graceful. It has not happened spontaneously, it has been forced. Their non-violence has a violent element in it; it has been violently forced. They have tried hard to become non- violent, they have managed somehow to become non-violent, but the non- violence is not like a natural flowering, it is cultivated.

The Buddhist word shila is very beautiful; it means graceful.

There can be two types of stillness. You can force yourself according to Yoga methods, you can learn a certain posture. By and by, you can manage to force your body into that posture. First it will be uncomfortable; by and by the body adjusts. The body has tremendous capacity to adjust to any situation. Then you can force your body to sit unmoving. And if you go on doing it, by and by, after a few months you will become like a Buddha-statue. But that will be violence, and there will be no grace in it. Deep down you will be boiling; deep down there will be hell-fire; deep down, you have not changed. How can you change just by changing the body? The real phenomenon has to be just otherwise: the within has to change, then the outward thing follows. And THEN it has grace.

It is not a question of forcing the periphery - because the center will not be affected at all by forcing the periphery. You can keep quiet; that does not mean you are quiet. But if you are quiet that certainly means you can keep quiet. This difference has to be understood. This is one of the most vital distinctions in a person's religious life: the Way is not from out to in, the Way is from in to out.

Don't force things from the outside, and don't think that by changing your body and your outward demeanor you can change your inner qualities. No, it doesn't happen that way. Change the inner, and the outward follows. Then there is grace.

And Buddha says: The second parmita is grace in living, a discipline that has arisen out of understanding.

The word 'discipline' is meaningful. It comes from the same root as 'disciple'. It means: readiness to learn.'Disciple' means: one who is very ready to learn, very open to learn. When one is open to learn that means one is very aware, because learning is possible only when you are aware. When you are not aware you cannot learn anything. People who are aware can learn - everywhere, anywhere.

Just the other day I was reading about a Sufi mystic, Sibli. Sibli was asked, "Who guided you on the Path? Who was your first Master?" And the questioner was surprised, because Sibli said, "A dog. One day I saw him almost dead with thirst, standing by the water's edge. Every time he looked at his reflection in the water he was frightened and withdrew, because he thought it was another dog. Finally, such was his necessity that he cast away fear and leapt into the water, at which point the other dog vanished. The dog found that the obstacle, which was himself, the barrier between himself and that which he was seeking, melted away. In this same way my own obstacle vanished when I knew what I took to be my own self was just a reflection, not the reality. And my Way was first shown to me by the behavior of a dog. He was my first Master."

A man of understanding learns from everywhere. A man of understanding learns and becomes a disciple. A discipline arises.

And Buddha says: Unless you have discipline, the capacity to learn, to receive - the awareness - you will not be able to go to the other shore. Knowledge will not help, but. the capacity to learn will help. And the difference is clear: knowledge is borrowed; the capacity to learn has to arise in you. It is your capacity. You cannot borrow the capacity to learn. You can borrow knowledge; knowledge is cheap. The capacity to learn means a great transformation in your being: you will have to drop the ego and you will have to drop accumulating. Knowledge you can accumulate, information you can accumulate; learning is not accumulation.

You never accumulate learning, you simply remain learning. No treasure arises out of it. It is just like a mirror: something comes before it, it reflects it. When the thing has moved it remains quiet - again a mirror, again simple, innocent. It does not collect. You cannot ask a mirror, "How many people have looked into you?" He does not collect, he is simply a mirror... he mirrors. Learning is like a mirror, and knowledge is like a photo-plate. It also mirrors, but only once. Then it is caught with the reflection, then it is destroyed.

Buddha says: SHILA IS the second PARMITA.

The third is SHANTI. SHANTI means patience. Of course, the journey is vast, and you cannot be in a hurry. If you are in a hurry you will never be able to move to the other shore. The journey is timeless; great patience is needed, infinite patience is needed. NIRVANA cannot be something instant.

Sometimes people come - very foolish people - and they say, "I have come only for three days. Is meditation possible?" They don't know what they are asking; even three lives are not enough. And when you are in such a hurry, even three hundred lives will not be enough - because in such hurry your mind is very tense. Slow down, relax a little bit. Don't be impatient - and then it is possible.

Maybe it can happen in three days. You see the point? Try to see the point: it can happen in three days, it can happen in three seconds, it may happen in a split- second - but then you will need oceanic patience. How much time it takes will depend on how much patience you have. The more patience you have, the less time will be needed; the less patience you have, the more time will be needed. If you really want to have it, drop all impatience. Forget all about when it is going to happen. You simply enjoy the moment. Enjoying the moment, being totally in it, one day suddenly it is there. In fact, it has never left you; it was always there.

But you were so much in a rush that you could not see it. The day you relax and sit silently in your room, suddenly you become aware of the presence. It is there, the whole room is full of it. The whole world is full of God; yes, every bush is afire.

The Jews have the beautiful story about Moses going to the mountain, Sinai, and there Moses saw a green bush afire. He was puzzled, he could not believe - because the bush was not burning and the fire was there. And then God spoke to him: "Don't be afraid, Moses. I am your God, your Lord. This fire is MY fire."

And, of course, how can God's fire burn a bush? The bush is also God's fire.

Moses saw one bush afire on the mountain, and I would like to tell you: every bush is afire. There is no need to go to Sinai, just look in this garden - every bush is afire with God because all greenery is His fire, all life is His fire, each breath is His fire.

Patience... then suddenly you start feeling He is present. Impatient, and you are rushing madly, and in your mad rush you cannot see. It is almost as if you carry a beautiful camera, and running around you try to take some pictures, and you go on rushing and running. What is going to happen? - you won't have any pictures, you may have only a few destroyed plates. The whole film will be just a chaos. When you are taking a picture you have to hold the camera absolutely still; it should not be shaky. Then a clearcut picture comes out of it.

When you are not rushing anywhere and your inner being is just still, herenow, God reflects. Then all chaos disappears, all questions disappear. Buddha says:

SHANTI, patience, is the third PARMITA.

The fourth is VIDYA. VIDYA has many meanings: it means energy, it means courage. Certainly courage is needed, and certainly energy is needed.

One has to be continuously aware that one's life energy should not be wasted unnecessarily. One should not have leakages. We are leaking; we are NEVER a reservoir of energy. Infinite energy is given to you, but you are a leaking vessel.

In every way, you dissipate energy, you never sit silently.

Buddha used to call his meditation ZAN. ZAN IS a Pali term for the Sanskrit DHYANA. From ZAN came the Chinese CHAN and the Japanese ZEN. In Japan Zen became the crescendo; what Buddha had planted as a seed flowered in Japan, came to its climax. What Buddha had started came to a conclusion. And Zen people say: Meditation is nothing but sitting silently, doing nothing. That's what Buddha was doing - doing nothing - when he attained. That's what he was doing sitting under the Bodhi Tree. What was he doing? - he was not doing anything; he was simply sitting so silently that there was no leakage of energy.

That energy started rising higher and higher and higher - that energy was reaching peaks. And then the energy rushed and touched the SAHASRAR, the seventh chakra; it came to the ultimate. Suddenly there was a flowering; Buddha became a lotus flower.

You have the same energy but you go on throwing it. Whenever you have energy, a great desire to throw it away arises You may call it 'sexual urge' or you may call it something else; it makes no difference. But whenever you have energy a great desire arises to relieve oneself.

In the west sex is thought of as a release. In the east we have taken the sexual energy in a totally different perspective: there is no need to release it, it is your energy. Because you go on releasing it, you remain empty. If you allow it sometimes to gather, if you simply let it gather inside you, the sheer quantity comes to a point when there is a qualitative change. The gathered energy rises higher and higher, the level goes on becoming higher and higher, and you touch higher altitudes of your being. A point comes when the energy has touched to the climax of your being. That's what SAMADHI IS.

And Buddha says: VIDYA IS the fourth PARMITA. One should learn how not to dissipate energy. Remember, he is not telling you to become a miser - because he has given you the first PARMITA: never be a miser. When he says, "Gather energy," he is not teaching you any miserliness, he is simply teaching you wisdom. He knows how it happened to him.

Share whatsoever you have, but don't leak. Leaking is not sharing. That's why I see that two persons can make love to each other, and still there may be no sharing. Both leaked. They use the other just as a help to leak, that's all. Sharing is totally different; it is not a leaking. And this has to be remembered: when you leak, you simply lose, nothing is gained out of it; when you share, you give something very ordinary, and you gain something very extraordinary. In sharing you never lose.

The fifth, Buddha calls DHYANA: meditation, silence, sitting, doing nothing.

Let that penetrate your life more and more. Whenever you have time, whenever you have nothing to do, don't create unnecessary, unneeded occupations. Just sit silently, watch life flow by. Look at the trees or at the stars, or just look at your nose, or at your navel; or close your eyes and just look at the inner silence, or inner thoughts. Just be... and let things pass; you sit silently.

Buddha says: If you can sit silently for even a few moments without doing anything, glimpses will start coming to you.

Now, modern psychologists also agree that if a person can be allowed just to sit silently, that's enough. Nothing else is needed. All else is just a help to sit.

Somebody gives you a mantra and says, "Sit silently and do the mantra." Now there is much research work going on about Transcendental Meditation. And Mahesh Yogi thinks it is because of the mantra that things happen; that is not true. It is just because you sit silently for twenty minutes that things happen.

Mantra is not relevant: you can sit without the mantra and the same thing will happen. Maybe mantra gives you an excuse to sit - because you are so foolish that you cannot sit, you have to have something to do. So if somebody says, "Say, 'Ram, Ram, Ram,'" you have some excuse to sit silently for twenty minutes because you are doing 'Ram, Ram, Ram.' Whatsoever results come - your blood pressure goes low, your breathing becomes more silent, there are changes in the oxygen content of your body, even your heart beats with a different rhythm, you feel very relaxed, the alpha waves are created, and out of those alpha waves you feel very quiet and refreshed - but it has nothing to do with the mantra, or with any mantra in particular. You can do, 'Ram, Ram'; you can do 'Aum, Aum'; you can do, 'Allah, Allah', or 'Ave Maria', or anything. Or you can create your own mantra; you can repeat your own name - even that will do. In fact, it has nothing to do with any mantra; it has nothing to do with mantra as such. If you can simply sit for twenty minutes without doing anything, the same will be the result. So whatsoever psychological investigations have revealed about TM, it is nothing about TM, it is simply about sitting silently.

Just sit silently and you will see: you are growing a new quality to your being; you are becoming more collected, more centered, more fulfilled. Your face will change, your eyes will change, you will have a serenity around you. Even others will start feeling your serenity. Even they will start feeling that something has happened to you - because wherever you move you will bring a certain cool breeze with you. And the situations will remain the same.

Somebody will insult you but now you will be able to laugh; no anger will arise.

Not that you are controlling it; in fact, it is not arising. You can see the whole absurdity of it. You can see the point that that man, that poor man who is angry and insulting you, is in bad shape. It has nothing to do with you. You have to be more compassionate to him. You will feel compassion rather than being angry.

Rather than being destructive to him, you will feel much pity for him... a totally different quality.

Worries may be the same - they continue. Through your meditation the world is not going to change, the world will be the same. But by your meditation YOU will be different, and when you are different the world is different, because it is your world; it depends on your vision, on your interpretation. Everything will be the same, but nothing will be the same anymore - because you have changed.

And Buddha says: On this lonely journey to the other shore, you will need to learn how to sit silently very much.

Ordinarily we are almost obsessively occupied. You cannot sit silently, you have to do something. Doing is a madness. If you have nothing to do you feel at a loss, you start boiling within: you start reading the same newspaper again, or you go and start gossiping to the neighbor, and you have talked about these things a thousand and one times, and again you are there. You have to do something.

You cannot remain quiet, you cannot remain unoccupied.

In the west you have a very absurd proverb: The empty mind is the devil's workshop. This must have been invented by the devil himself - because the empty mind is God's workshop. This must have been invented by the devil so that nobody remains empty and the devil can continue his work well. If you are really empty the devil cannot enter you, because thoughts function as horses for the devil: he cannot come. Without thought, evil cannot enter you. Without thought, there is no possibility of ANYTHING entering into you. All that enters into you from the outside enters through thought. When there is no thought the outside disappears; you are just an inside. That's what I said in the beginning:

truth is subjectivity.

The sixth PARMITA Buddha calls PRAGYA. PRAGYA means wisdom. It is different from knowledge: knowledge is that which is not based on your own experience, wisdom is that which is based on your own experience. Rely only on that which you have experienced. Don't rely on anything else - otherwise when you are left alone, all your knowledge will disappear - and nothing will be left.

That which has come from others is not going to be with you when others have left you. Only that which is yours will be yours.

A disciple was leaving his Master. It was a dark night and it had become late.

The disciple was a little apprehensive because he had to pass five miles of dense forest to reach to his village. The Master saw that fear. He said, "Are you afraid of the darkness?"

The disciple said, "Yes, I am afraid, but I couldn't gather courage to say so."

The Master said, "Don't be afraid." And the Master lit a candle, gave the candle to the disciple, and said, "This will do. You go."

When the disciple was going out of the door, the Master suddenly blew the candle out. The disciple said, "I don't understand what you have done. Just a moment before you lit the candle for me with such compassion. Now why are you so cruel? Why have you blown it out?"

The Master laughed. He said, "My candle will not be of much use to you."

Buddha has said: APPO DEEPO BHAVA - 'Be a light unto yourself.'

"The night is dark, I know, and I would like to help you in every way; but I cannot do anything that is impossible. Only your light will help you in the dark night, so rely on yourself. Go with my blessings. Go into the dark night with my blessings. Rely on your own consciousness. Remain alert, let that be your light, because nobody else's light can help you."

This is a beautiful parable, of infinite significance.

Wisdom is that which is your own experience - remember it. And all that you have gathered from others, throw it! burn it! That which is yours is true; that which is not yours is untrue. A truth is truth only if you have experienced it.

Even a truth becomes a lie when you have not experienced it. When I say a truth to you it is truth when I say it. When you hear it it becomes a lie - because for you it will not be based on your experience. So drop all that luggage that you have been carrying: it is useless, it is not going to help.

Buddha says: In this journey to the other shore, you drop all the weight that you have gathered from others. Just take that much which is yours. Of course, you cannot drop it. You will have to take it; there is no way to drop it. Can you drop anything that you have known? Can you drop it? How can you unknow what you have known? - there is no way. If you have experienced something in meditation, how can you drop it? You cannot drop it... because by experiencing it, it has become part of your being. That's what PRAGYA is. PRAGYA is some experience that has become part of your being, is no longer a possession. It is just your very being. And how can you carry that which you have not experienced?

You cannot carry it. Only that is yours, which has been experienced by you.

Beliefs have to be dropped. Only wisdom can be of help.

There is a Hassidic story:

Without telling his teacher anything of what he was doing, a disciple of Rabbi Baruch had enquired into the nature of God, and in his thinking had penetrated further and further until he was tangled in doubts and what had been certain up to that point became uncertain. When Rabbi Baruch noticed that the young man no longer came to him as usual, he went to the city where he lived, entered his room unexpectedly and said to him, "I know what is hidden in your heart. You have passed through the fifty gates of reason. You begin with a question and think and think up an answer... and the first gate opens. And to a new question, and again you plummet, find the solution, fling open the second gate, and look into a new question. On and on like this, deeper and deeper, until you have forced open the fiftieth gate. There you stare at a question whose answer no man has ever found - for if there were one who knew it, there would no longer be any freedom of choice. But if you dare to probe still further, you plunge into the abyss."

"So I should go back all the way to the very beginning?" cried the disciple.

"If you turn, you will not be going back," said the rabbi. "You will be standing beyond the last gate. You will stand in faith."

That's what Buddha calls wisdom.

Belief is from others, faith is your own. Don't be deceived by dictionaries:

dictionaries say faith means belief, belief means faith. They don't mean that. They are not synonymous; they are really opposite to each other, antagonistic. Belief is just faith in appearance; deep down, there is doubt, because you have not experienced - how can the doubt disappear? You are simply pretending that you know. Without knowing the doubt will remain there deep inside your heart. One day or other you will have to face it. And the time that you wasted in repressing it is a sheer wastage. In the first place, you should have encountered it.

Doubt encountered, not repressed, disappears. Then arises faith. Faith is the Jewish term for the same thing that Buddha calls pragya, wisdom. By belief you trust others, but others cannot go with you. Don't lean on others: that is Buddha's fundamental message. Lean on your own self, because you will be left alone in the final stage, and only your own eyes, your own wisdom, will be of help.

Another Hassid story I would like to share with you....

A woman came to Rabbi Israel, the Magid of Kosnitz, and told him with many tears that she had been married a dozen years and still had not borne a son.

"What are you willing to do about it?" he asked her.

She did not know what to say.

"My mother, " so the Magid told her, "was aging and still had no child. Then she heard that the holy Baal Shem was stopping over in Ept in the course of a journey. She hurried to his inn and bade him pray that she might bear a son.

"'What are you willing to do about it?' Baal Shem asked her.

"'My husband is a poor bookbinder,' she replied, 'but I have one fine thing that I shall give to the Rabbi.'

"She went home as fast as she could and fetched her good cap, her katinka, which was carefully stored away in a chest. But when she returned to the inn with it, she heard that Baal Shem had already left for Magditch.

"She immediately set out after him, and since she had no money to ride, she walked from town to town with her katinka, until she came to Magditch.

"The Baal Shem took the cap and hung it on the wall. 'It is well,' he said. "My mother walked all the way back from town to town until she reached Ept. A year later, I was born."

"I too," cried the woman, "will bring you a good cap of mine so that I may get a son."

"That won't work," said the Magid. "You heard the story; my mother had no story to go by."

Old answers won't help, others' answers won't help. You cannot repeat in life; life is unrepeatable. You can read the VEDAS and the KORAN and the BIBLE: it won't help. It may help the RISHI who wrote the VEDA, but it won't help you - because it is a borrowed thing to you. The rishi had never read any VEDA, Mohammed had never read any KORAN. YOU cannot have that which Mohammed gained, because he had never read any KORAN. And you are trying to gain it by reading the KORAN? No, it is not possible.

Buddha says: Remember, life is unrepeatable, truth is unrepeatable. Nobody else's answer is going to help, you have to find your answer. Depend on only your experience. Sort it out in your mind; all that is not yours, throw it out. Go and throw it in the river. Keep only that which you know, which you know on your own, and that will become a provision, a PARMITA.

The seventh is UPAI. UPAI means: skillful means. Buddha emphasizes very much that all means are not good; only very skillful means have to be used.

What does he mean by 'skillful'? - he means an UPAI: a method which can be dropped when its use is finished. Otherwise one can become too burdened by the method itself. He used to say: You use a boat to go to the other shore, but then you leave it. You don't carry it on your head. You don't say, "This boat has brought me to this shore, so now how can I be so ungrateful and leave it here? I will carry it on my head for my whole life."

Buddha says: Use things, and drop them when their work is finished. When you have utilized them, go ahead. Leave them behind.

All methods have to be dropped by and by. Ultimately, finally, before you reach to the other shore, you have to drop all - meditations, disciplines - everything has to be dropped. So be very skillful, otherwise there is a tendency to be caught by the method.

I know people... even a person like Ramakrishna was in a difficulty. He used Mother Kali for his meditations, then he became obsessed with it. Then whenever he would close his eyes, Kali would be standing there. Her image would come... beautiful... but this was trouble. Now he could not be alone. Now there was no way to be totally silent; the Mother was always standing there, so there was always company. And when the Mother is standing, of course, Ramakrishna had to say something: praise her, sing a song, pray, do something.

He became very disturbed: "What to do about it?" And he himself had cultivated it. For years he had cultivated it, for years he had prayed before the image, saying, "Come into my dreams." For years he had been asking, crying and weeping, "Mother, when I close my eyes, why don't you come to me?" Then it started - not that the Mother heard; there is nobody to hear. Not that the Mother took compassion: there is nobody. But constantly asking, constantly remembering, he became hypnotized. It was an auto-hypnosis, but tremendously powerful; he was a powerful man. Now Kali was always standing there - in the night, in the day - it was difficult to have any privacy now. Even if he went in, Kali was there. Inner space also became occupied; he became burdened. But how to drop Kali? - even the idea to drop her was difficult. Then he asked a very great saint who was passing by. He told him, "Something has to be done now."

The saint could see the point: he had used a method but had used it unskillfully, so he had become too obsessed with the method. It was good, it could have been used, but one should always remember that every method has to be dropped one day, so don't become too attached. Now he had become too attached.

The saint told him, "You close your eyes and when Kali appears, take a sword from inside and cut her in two."

Ramakrishna said, "What are you saying? Have you gone mad? How can I cut Mother Kali? No, that is not possible. I cannot do it, I cannot even think about it!"

Then the saint said, "Then you will be always obsessed with this idea. You will never attain to real SAMADHI, because real SAMADHI is when consciousness is absolutely pure and there is no content in it. The mirror is absolutely pure, nothing reflects." He said, "Then it is for you to decide."

Now Ramakrishna was in much doubt about what to do. He wanted to attain to SAMADHI, but this attachment was coming in the way. Finally he decided:

"Okay," he said, "I will do it. But from where to get the sword?"

And the saint laughed and said, "From where you have got your Mother Kali, from the same place! It is imagination, so imagine a sword - and imagination can cut imagination. This Mother Kali is your imagination, your sword is your imagination. And cutting, and Mother Kali falling apart, is also imagination. To destroy imagination, a real sword is not needed. For only an unreal thing, an unreal thing will do."

Ramakrishna tried many times, but would not succeed. The saint got fed-up. He said, "Now tomorrow I am leaving. This is the last time. To help you I will do one thing: I'm going to bring a piece of glass, and when the Mother Kali arises"...

because whenever the Mother Kali would be there, immediately you could see it from outside also: Ramakrishna would start swaying and tears of happiness would start rolling down his face.... He said, "When I see that now you are in your hypnosis and the Mother Kali is there, I will cut you on your third-eye center with my piece of glass. Blood will flow. At that moment, this is to remind you not to forget the sword. As I am cutting you, you cut your Mother Kali. You try it, otherwise tomorrow I will go." He was threatening to go, and it was difficult to find a man like him. His name was Totapuri, a very rare PARAMAHANSA.

Ramakrishna tried, crying and weeping, and when Totapuri cut his third-eye center, he also took courage and cut the Mother inside. Suddenly, all disappeared, Mother and sword and all. He was in absolute silence.

Buddha says: Use all means and methods in a very unattached way, so when the time is right to drop them, you can drop them. Everything has to be dropped.

The eighth is PRANIHAN, surrender. And Buddha says: Remember, you have to do much, but the ultimate always happens when you are not doing anything. It happens in a let-go. PRANIHAN IS the state of let-go. You do all that you can do; it will help, it will prepare the ground, but it cannot cause the truth to happen.

When you have done everything that you can do, then relax, then nothing more is left to be done. In that relaxing, in that let-go, the truth happens. Truth is not something that we can bring. It comes, it descends, it happens; it is nothing of your doing.

The ninth, BALA, is power. After surrender is power. Now, see the difference.

At the fourth Buddha said VIDYA, energy. It was not power, it was simply energy, human energy. Now after surrender there is BALA: power, divine power. When you have surrendered and your ego is dropped, suddenly you are full of unknown power. You have become a receptacle.

And the tenth, GHYANA, IS seeing into the nature of things, or awareness.

Buddha uses the word 'GHYANA' in a very specific way: seeing into the nature of things. When you have surrendered and the power of the divine or the power of the whole has descended on you, then there is that encounter, that vision, that realization - NIRVANA.

These ten are the PARMITAS. They have to be practised.

Now, the sutra. The sutra is to remind you of how you have to work for these ten PARMITAS.




This is one of the things to be understood. This is very significant, and Buddha has repeated so many times, "My teaching is like honey; sweet within, sweet without, sweet throughout; sweet in the beginning, sweet in the middle, sweet in the end. My teaching is like honey." He has repeated that a thousand and one times. Why? There is a very significant message in it.

Ordinarily, whenever you feel happy, afterwards comes unhappiness. When you indulge you have a glimpse of happiness; then there is pain and frustration. So it is sweet in the beginning, but bitter in the end. Seeing this, many people have tried the reverse, the extreme opposite. That's what ascetics do: they say, "Fasting, austerities, discipline, is painful in the beginning, but very sweet in the end." These are the two ways in the world: the way of the worldly man who hankers for pleasure.... Even if in the end it brings pain, it's okay:"We will see.

Right now, why miss?" Even if a drop of honey is there, he's ready to suffer for years for it. The worldly man thinks of the momentary and suffers for it.

The so-called religious man, seeing this absurdity, stands on his head. He turns the whole thing upside-down. He says, "If in the world this is experienced, if you enter into a blissful, peaceful, happy state, in the end you become frustrated. The happiness is for a moment, and for years afterwards you remain frustrated." He tries the other: he says, "First I will move into pain - I will fast, I will move away from all pleasure, I will go to the Himalayas, I will stand in the cold, or in the hot sun, I will move into pain myself - and then comes pleasure." Yes, that's true. It happens because pain and pleasure are two aspects of the same coin. If first you look at one side, you will have to look at the other side later on.

Buddha says: My teaching is totally different - it is neither of the worldly nor of the other-worldly; it is neither of one extreme or of another extreme; it is sweet in the beginning, it is sweet in the middle, it is sweet in the end. He says: It is not a question of choosing between pain and pleasure. If you choose pleasure, pain will come; if you choose pain, pleasure will come. But on the whole both are there.

"My teaching," Buddha says, "is of choiceless awareness." You don't choose. You should not choose - neither pain nor pleasure; then the whole coin drops out of your hand. Then pleasure and pain both disappear, and that which is left behind is what bliss is, or peace, or serenity... but it is sweet.



If your heart is not willing then there is no need. Then the time has not come for you to move on the Way or to go in search for the truth. Then you still need to live in the world and get a little more mature. But don't go against the heart, because that going is useless. If your heart goes with you into the search for truth, only then go.


Buddha says: If your heart is ready, if you have experienced life and the pain of it, if you have suffered life and understood the frustration of it and your heart is ready to move to the other shore - you have experienced this shore and have found that it is just empty, just illusory - if you are ready to move to the other shore without looking backwards, not even a slight desire for this shore has remained in your being, then you are ready.

Then Buddha says: You are free of all discipline. Then there is no need; then this much is enough: your heart is in accord with the Way. Discipline will come; this is enough. Discipline is needed because your heart is not in accord with the Way.

"But then," Buddha says, "that discipline is not of much use."

Remember, Buddha is not ready to take you on the Way if you are immature.

Maturity is a must. And what do I mean by 'maturity'? By 'maturity' I mean: a man who has looked into life and found that this is just a dream. When the reality that you think is real starts looking like a dream, you are mature. Then it is very simple to move to the other shore alone - there will be no difficulty; your heart will be in accord with the Way. You can go dancing, you can go singing, you can go laughing... you can go joyous, cheerful. You will not go reluctantly, you will not go resistantly, you will not go against yourself. In fact, you will not be going; you will simply be moving with the stream, like timber.



Buddha says: First, great effort is needed, and then great surrender too. That is the meaning of the Zen people saying that 'effortless effort' is needed. A great harmony is needed of effort and no-effort. If you rely on your effort, you will never reach; if you rely only on God's grace, you will never reach. The possibility to reach arises only when you have done all that you can do. Only at that moment does the universe shower on you, not before it. Then you can relax.

So Buddha says: First do each thing that you can do. Never ask for help before that. Don't be lazy, don't be lethargic; bring all your energy into action. Become totally involved in the spiritual work. Of course, remember also that this is not going to give you the ultimate. A moment will come when you will have to surrender. But... you can surrender only when you have done all that you can do.

God helps those who help themselves.

There are two types of people. The.first type says, "If it is going to happen by His grace, it will happen. When He needs, or when He wants, it will happen. I will have to wait." Their waiting is impotent, their waiting is not of worth. They have not earned it, they have not taken even a step towards God. It is not going to happen.

Then there are egoistic people; they say, "It is going to happen by our effort.

There is no God, there is no grace, there is no possibility of the universe helping us; the universe is absolutely indifferent to human beings. We have to do all that we can do, and it is going to happen only by our effort."

Buddha says: These people also will never reach. They are too egoistic. The first type is too lethargic, the second type is too active, and the reality is just in the middle: be active and yet ready to surrender.

These are the differences among the three religions in India. Hinduism is of the first type, Jainism is of the second type, Buddhism is of the third type.

Hinduism believes it will happen by God's grace; that whenever He wills, it will happen: Nothing can happen without His will. Not that what they say is wrong, but they don't earn it.

Jainism says: It will happen by our will, our power. There is no grace, no help coming from the universe, so we have to fight and struggle. So Jainism becomes a very egoistic trip, Buddha says: You have to do all that you can do. Be a Jaina first, and then be a Hindu. That is the greatest synthesis ever brought to the world: be a Jaina first, and then be a H indu.

In Buddha the whole east came to a synthesis. Buddha's contribution to the world is unique. And that's my teaching too: be a Jaina first, and then be a Hindu. First make all the effort that you can, go to the very end that you can, and then relax. Then you have earned; now the grace will be coming.

Effort plus surrender, struggle plus surrender, brings one home.

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"The principle of human equality prevents the creation of social
inequalities. Whence it is clear why neither Arabs nor the Jews
have hereditary nobility; the notion even of 'blue blood' is lacking.

The primary condition for these social differences would have been
the admission of human inequality; the contrary principle, is among
the Jews, at the base of everything.

The accessory cause of the revolutionary tendencies in Jewish history
resides also in this extreme doctrine of equality. How could a State,
necessarily organized as a hierarchy, subsist if all the men who
composed it remained strictly equal?

What strikes us indeed, in Jewish history is the almost total lack
of organized and lasting State... Endowed with all qualities necessary
to form politically a nation and a state, neither Jews nor Arabs have
known how to build up a definite form of government.

The whole political history of these two peoples is deeply impregnated
with undiscipline. The whole of Jewish history... is filled at every
step with "popular movements" of which the material reason eludes us.

Even more, in Europe, during the 19th and 20th centuries the part

And if, in Russia, previous persecution could perhaps be made to
explain this participation, it is not at all the same thing in
Hungary, in Bavaria, or elsewhere. As in Arab history the
explanation of these tendencies must be sought in the domain of

(Kadmi Cohen, pp. 76-78;

The Secret Powers Behind Revolution, by Vicomte Leon de Poncins,
pp. 192-193)