The Profound and the Trivial
MY EXPERIENCE OF ME IS THE MOST PROFOUND EXPERIENCE OF MY LIFE.
IT IS ALSO THE MOST TRIVIAL. PLEASE CLARIFY.
The question is from Dhruva, and the question is really significant. The question has arisen out of an insight, almost a mini-satori.
That's how life is, profound and trivial at the same time, simultaneously. There is no contradiction, Dhruva, in the profundity of life and its trivialness. You have been taught that the sacred is far away and it is never the profane. You have been taught a distinction between the profane and the sacred, between the profound and the trivial. In fact, there is no distinction. The trivial is the profound, the ordinary is the extraordinary, and the temporal is the eternal.
So this is a great insight. Don't lose sight of it. More possibility is there that you will lose it, because it will go against the grain. Your whole training has been such that you are always dividing: into good and bad, into the pure and the impure, the perfect and the imperfect, into virtue and sin, the holy and the unholy. You have always been making these distinctions, and because of distinctions you have missed the reality of that which is.
This cuckoo singing there and Christ speaking to you are not different. A leaf falling from the tree and a word falling from the lips of Buddha are not different. The very dust is divine.
The distinction is man-made, it is a mind trick.
And because of these distinctions, these categories, we are never together, we cannot be together. How can you be together if you make such an unbridgeable gap between the profound and the trivial? Then you will find your whole life is trivial. Eating, drinking, sleeping, walking, going to the office or to the farm -- all is trivia.
Then where will you find the profound? In the church, in the temple, sometimes praying and meditating, sometimes listening to me? Then the profound will not be much in your life, and the profound will be, in a way, false. It will not permeate your whole life. It will not be there always with you. It will not surround you like a climate. Sometimes you will have to make an effort to have that quality of profundity, and again and again you will lose it. And you will become divided, schizophrenic; you will become two, split, and you will start condemning yourself.
Whenever you will see something trivial you will condemn yourself, that "I am just trivial, ordinary." And whenever you will see something profound you will start feeling holier than thou; you will start feeling very egoistic. Both are dangerous.
To feel that you are trivial is a condemnation. It creates an inferiority complex. It pulls you down into sadness. It forces you to remain depressed. And, naturally, you cannot love yourself: you are so trivial. You are so ordinary, how can you love yourself? You fall too short from the ideal of perfection. So a great condemnation arises in your being, and the moment you condemn yourself you are in hell. Then nobody can take you out of it. Even if somebody comes and says you are beautiful, you will not trust him. You will think he is trying to cheat you, bribe you. He is trying to exploit you. How can you be beautiful? You know yourself better than he knows you. You are not beautiful; you are ugly. You are the ugliest person in the world.
Because of this condemnation, love will not happen. How can you love anybody if you are feeling so condemned in yourself? And how can you allow somebody to love you if you are feeling so condemned? Love is impossible. When you live in self-condemnation you live in hell. Hell is not somewhere else: it is in your attitude; it is a condemning attitude.
When you accept yourself and you enjoy yourself, you are in heaven. Heaven is also an attitude.
And you can move from heaven and hell any moment you decide! And you go on moving; you swing between heaven and hell. Just understand that it is your creation.
So if you feel condemned because of your trivia, you will be in hell. And then sometimes you will start feeling very holy because you have done something great. You have saved a life -- somebody was drowning in the ocean and you saved him, and a child was caught in a house on fire and you jumped in and you risked your life, you have done something great -- then you will feel very egoistic. Ego is again hell.
To feel superior is to be in hell, to feel inferior is to be in hell. To drop all superiority, inferiority, and just to be is to be in heaven.
The idea of condemnation is also ego-oriented. People have impossible ideals. Just the other night Vishnu came; he writes again and again that "I am not perfect. What should I do?"
that "I am imperfect," that "Whatsoever I do is imperfect." He is torturing himself because he is imperfect. But who is not imperfect? The very idea that "I should be perfect," is very egoistic. The very effort is egoistic. Nobody is perfect.
In fact, perfection cannot exist, by its very nature. To be perfect means to be dead. Then there will be no evolution, when you are perfect. Then how can you survive? For what? If God is perfect then God is dead. If God is imperfect only then is he alive and can be alive.
I preach the imperfect God, and I preach the imperfect existence, and I preach the beauty of imperfection and the life of imperfection. The very idea that "I have to be perfect," that "No flaw should be there in my life" is egoistic. And certainly you will find a thousand and one flaws.
So on one hand you are on an ego trip, which creates trouble, makes you miserable, because you are not perfect; and on the other hand the same trip creates condemnation. You want to be superior and you know that you are inferior: both are two aspects of the same coin.
You remain in hell.
Enjoy your imperfection. Enjoy the way you are.
And drop all distinctions between the holy and the unholy, sin and virtue, good and bad, God and devil. Destroy all those distinctions. Those are the traps you are caught in. Those are the traps which don't allow you to live, don't allow you freedom. You cannot dance: one foot is encaged in inferiority, another foot is encaged in superiority. You are chained. How can you dance? Drop all these chains.
That's what Zen people say: "A hair's distinction, and heaven and hell are set apart." That's what Tilopa says. A little distinction, a hair's distinction, and hell and heaven are set apart, and you are caught in the duality. No distinction, and you are free. No distinction, is freedom.
The profundity of the trivial and the trivialness of the profound, that's what I teach.
Eating is trivial if you look from the outside. If you look from the inside it is profound, it is a miracle -- that you can eat bread and the bread is turned into blood, that it becomes your flesh, that it becomes your bones, that it even becomes your marrow. You eat bread, and the bread becomes your thoughts, dreams. It is a miracle. It is the profoundest thing that is happening. When you are eating, it is no ordinary thing. God is at work. It is creative. While chewing bread you are creating life, unknowingly, unconsciously. You are making a thousand and one things possible. Tomorrow you may paint: and that bread that you had eaten has become painting. Tomorrow you may sing, or right now you may do something which would not be possible if the bread was not there.
The Christian prayer is beautiful; it says, "God, give us our daily bread." Looks very trivial! What does Jesus mean when he says, "Pray every day, 'Give us our daily bread'"?
Couldn't he think of anything more profound? Bread? You just change the word "bread" and say every day in your prayer, "Lord, give us our daily tea," and you will see how foolish it looks. But the bread or tea or coffee -- or Coca-Cola! ... yes, Coca-Cola too is divine.
Everything is divine -- because how can it be otherwise?
The prayer says, "Give us our daily bread." It is raising the trivial to the profound. It is a great statement. The Hindus have always been saying, "ANNAM BRAHMA" -- "Food is God." Raising the trivial to the profound. Looking into the trivial so deeply that it changes into the profound.
You are taking a shower. It is trivia, everyday business, but it can become profound. Just look deep into it. Just standing under the shower, and the water goes on flowing, and the body feels fresh and young and alive, and the water is a blessing. Because we are made out of water. A man is almost eighty percent water, and the first glimpse of life happened in the sea.
The first thing that existed was the fish, and even now, in the mother's womb, the child floats in seawater, with almost the same ingredients, the same saltiness. That's why when a woman is pregnant she starts eating more salt; she needs more salt because the child needs seawater around him. The child is still a fish in the beginning, primary stage. Water is life, and when you are taking a shower life is showering on you -- eighty percent of life is showering on you, the most necessary element for life. No life is possible without water. These trees will not be there if the water is not, and these birds won't sing, and these animals won't be there and these men will not be there. All life will disappear if water disappears.
There is a profound experience when you are touched by water. You can make it so profound! It depends on you, how you go into it. It can become a meditation, a prayer. You can feel grateful, that God is great, that water is still available.
To breathe is so trivial, who bothers about it? But breath is your life. All languages have words for "life" which really mean "breath". Sanskrit has PRANA for "life"; it means "breath". The word "soul" means "breath"; the word "psyche" means "breath".
And the Bible says God made man and breathed life into him. Life started by breathing into man; otherwise man was just dust. "Adam" means "dust," "earth". God made Adam out of mud. "Adam" is the Hebrew word for "earth". Then he breathed life into him. And that's how life happens always. A child is born and the first thing we wait expectantly for is that he should cry. Why? Because only through crying will he start breathing. For two, three seconds even the doctor cannot breathe, the nurse cannot breathe. Whether the child is going to breathe or not, who knows? He may not breathe. If he is not going to breathe then there will be no life.
If he breathes there will be life. Still the same happens as it happens with Adam: God breathes in the child, in each child.
God is the invisible force, the life energy that surrounds you. It enters through breath in you, and the day you die you will die through exhalation. You start life with inhalation, you stop life with exhalation; then you will not breathe anymore. Again Adam is adam, again dust is dust, dust unto dust.
Breath is life, but have you looked into it? Standing under the sun in the morning, breathe.
It is God you breathe in. And then it becomes profound. It is your attitude.
The trivial and the profound are not two separate things. They are one, they are together, they are two aspects of one energy. Your life is trivia if you don't look deep. If you start looking deep your life is profound.
So Dhruva, it is a great insight. You say, "My experience of me is the most profound experience of my life. It is also the most trivial. Please clarify." Don't get confused. There is nothing to clarify. It is how life is: the trivial is the profound.
The question has arisen because Dhruva must have been thinking these are contradictions, the trivial and the profound. No, they are not contradictory; they are complementary. The trivial hides the profound. The trivial functions like a cover, like a crust; it protects the profound. It is almost like a seed. The seed is protecting the possibility of the tree. That possibility is very soft; the seed is hard. The hard seed, the hard crust of the seed, is protecting the softest possibility, of flowers, of a big tree. And the seed will protect it till the seed finds the right soil. Then the seed disappears, then the sheath disappears, then the hard crust dissolves into the earth and the soft life arises.
The profound is hidden in the trivial, so look deep. Wherever there is the trivial there is the profound. Don't escape from the trivial; otherwise you will be escaping from the profound.
And don't seek the profound AGAINST the trivial; otherwise you will never find it.
A PLAY QUESTION: IF YOU WERE TO COME HERE NOW TO THIS ASHRAM AS A YOUNG UNENLIGHTENED MAN, HOW WOULD YOU RESPOND? WOULD YOU BECOME PART OF THE ASHRAM? WHAT WORK WOULD YOU DO? WHERE WOULD YOU SIT?
The question is from Somendra. A beautiful question.
First, he asks, "If you were to come here now to this ashram as a young unenlightened man, how would you respond?
Even if I was unenlightened I would not be so unenlightened to come to this ashram. That much is certain.
Mulla Nasrudin's wife was dying, and of course he was consoling her in every way, and the wife opened her eyes and said, "It seems almost certain that this night will be my last. I will not be able to see the sunrise again. Mulla, how will you react to my death?"
The Mulla said, "How will I react to your death? I will go mad!"
Even in that serious moment the wife started laughing: she said, "You cunning fellow.
You will not go mad. I know within a week you will be remarried."
And Mulla said, "No. I will go mad -- but I will not go THAT mad."
So even if I was unenlightened I would not be THAT unenlightened.
Second thing, you say, "Would you become part of the ashram?"
Even now I am not part of the ashram. I cannot be part of any institution or any organization, even my own. And if I had come as an unenlightened man, naturally, the ashram will not be mine, will be somebody else's. I cannot be a part even of my own organization, so how can I be a part of anybody else's organization? Impossible.
And then you ask, "What work would you do?"
I have never done any work. I am the laziest man in the world you can find.
And the last, you ask, "Where would you sit?"
I would escape immediately! I would see some organization, some ashram and I would run! You are asking, "Where will you sit?" I will not sit at all.
USUALLY I AM "THIS WAY" OR "THAT WAY". BUT FOR SOME TIME I HAVE EXPERIENCED ALL KINDS OF CONTRADICTIONS, SIMULTANEOUSLY. I SEE WOMEN AS OBJECTS OF WORSHIP, AND AT THE SAME TIME I LUST AFTER THEM. I AM CONTENT TO LET LIFE FLOW, AND I AM AFRAID OF THE FUTURE. I CRAVE TO BE ALONE, AND I CRAVE TO BE ALWAYS WITH PEOPLE. I FEEL BIZARRE BECAUSE THESE CONTRADICTIONS ALL SEEM EQUALLY REAL AND TRUE. IS THERE ANYTHING TO BE UNDERSTOOD OR DONE ABOUT THIS?
Whenever you come across a contradiction, watch very carefully. There is bound to be something of great significance. Never avoid contradictions, because life is contradictory. Life exists through the tension of contradiction. So whenever you come across a contradiction you are very close to the source of life. Let that be always remembered.
The ordinary reaction is whenever you come across a contradiction you start trying to solve it, start finding explanations for it, or start dropping it into the unconscious so you need not worry about it. You start doing something about it immediately the moment you feel some contradiction because you have been taught to live noncontradictorily. You have been taught a very dangerous thing. Nobody can live noncontradictorily. If you want to live you have to live through contradiction, AS contradiction.
You have been taught to be consistent; that's why you have become false. This is the whole trick. How does such great hypocrisy exist in the world? Why? Why has the whole world turned out to be hypocritical? There is a trick to it, a great trick; a great technology is behind it. The technology is: teach people to be consistent, and they will become hypocrites.
Because life exists through contradiction.
Life is inconsistent. One moment this, another moment that; life is that way. One moment you are feeling loving, another moment you hate the same person; life is like that. Now, you have been taught if you love, then love always. What happens? You cannot love always, so only one thing is possible: when hate comes you hide the hate, you repress the hate, and you go on pretending love. This is what hypocrisy is. When you don't love you pretend.
You are full of hate for your wife, but you come home and you hug her and you kiss her and you inquire, "How are you, honey?" and all that. And deep down you are hating her and you want to kill her. In fact, the whole day you have been fantasizing how to kill this woman.
But you have been taught to be consistent. So, once, you had fallen in love, and you have said things in those love moments and you have promised that "I will love you forever and ever" -- now you have to be consistent.
What will you do with your hate that is bound to arise? Each love object is bound to be the hate object too. If you want not to hate, then you will have to stop loving. If you really want not to hate anybody, then you will have to stop loving, but you cannot love consistently. The inconsistency will come up again and again.
It is as if somebody has told you, "If you see the day, don't see the night. That is inconsistent." So what will you do? In the day you keep your eyes open, in the night you keep your eyes closed and believe that it is day. But the night comes; it doesn't follow your ideas. It has to come. The night follows the day; the day follows the night.
You have been taught, "Be consistent." Your so-called character is nothing but an effort to be consistent.
A real man cannot have any character. A real man is bound to be characterless because to have a character means to have consistency. To be characterless means to be free.
I said something yesterday. Now, if I have a character, I will try to be consistent with my past; whatsoever I said yesterday, I have to say the same thing today. But then I have to repeat my past. I cannot live in the moment and I cannot live in the present.
In fact, a consistent man is one who goes on changing his past into his future, who goes on putting his past as his future, ahead of himself. That is the man of character, consistent man.
An inconsistent man is one who never allows the past to become his future, who remains free for the future, who has no promises to keep, who has no commitment with the past. Whenever it was, he lived it totally; gone, it is gone.
A real man will love you and will hate you too. And sometimes he will say, "I will love you always"; and sometimes he will say, "I cannot love you again. Impossible." Sometimes he will be in a deep honeymoon with you and sometimes in a deep divorce, and both things will go like day and night. A real marriage is a continuous honeymoon and divorce, and honeymoon and divorce. Mini honeymoons, mini divorces; big honeymoons, big divorces. It continues like day and night.
So whenever you come across a contradiction, be watchful, be very alert. You are very close to life. And when you are consistent you are just false, a plastic thing, you are not real.
I don't teach consistency. I teach the freedom of being inconsistent. I teach the freedom of being contradictory. That's my whole approach towards life.
Of course, you are afraid of being contradictory because then you will not know who you are. With character there is something, something very secure: you know who you are. You have a label: a good man, a bad man, a saint, a sinner. You can believe in your identity when you are consistent -- that you are a good husband, a good Christian, a churchgoer, and this and that. With the inconsistency your identity disappears; you don't know who you are. You become an opening, you are no more closed, you have an open future. You don't know what you are going to do the next moment; only the next moment will tell. To live in that insecurity needs courage.
Sannyas is what I propose. Sannyas means to remain in insecurity; sannyas means not to allow your past to influence your future, not to allow your past to project itself into the future.
Let the dead bury the dead. The past is gone, gone. Don't cling to it, and don't help it to cling to you.
The moment something has passed it has passed. Be completely clean of it and be free and fresh again; then you will be real, authentically real, and there will be joy, and there will be celebration and song. I am not saying you will not ever be sad, no. You will be sad. The false man is never sad -- because he is never happy. The false man just remains in the middle, never happy, never sad. He is simply so-so, lukewarm; he is never too cold and never too hot. He is just "okay". He somehow manages. He has a comfortable life, but no real life.
I am not saying that the real man will always be happy. I am saying the real man will always be real. When he is sad he will be really sad. He will sing a song -- of sadness. He will accept his sadness as part of life, as part of growth. He will not reject it. If he feels like crying he will cry; he will not say, "What am I doing? This is not good. Only women cry, and I am a man." He will not say that. He will say, "If my eyes want to cry and the tears are rolling down, good. I have to be real. I am only whatsoever I am." He will cry. His tears will be true.
Your smiles are false, your tears are false. You manage to smile, and you manage to cry too. So you live an empty life. The real man's life will be full, sometimes full of joy and sometimes full of sadness.
And the real man one day becomes enlightened. The unreal man never becomes enlightened. When the real man becomes enlightened, then there is no joy and no sadness.
Then his being is just a witness. Joy comes: he watches it. Sadness comes: he watches it.
Now, these are the three stages. The false man: his joy is just a show, a mask, his sadness too; he pretends. The real man, the second stage: he is natural, spontaneous; his joy is true, his sadness is true. You can trust him. When he is crying, his whole heart is crying; and when he smiles, his whole heart is smiling. And the second stage is a must to attain to the third, the enlightened man. The enlightened man is neither sad nor happy. He has attained to the witnessing soul; he simply watches. He knows the sadness has come, the happiness has come, but these are like climates that come and go and change, and he remains centered.
The false man cannot jump to the enlightened state; hence I teach the real man, but the real man is not the goal.
That's why my work goes beyond the Encounter ideology, Gestalt ideology. The Gestalt ideology or the Encounter ideology stops at the real man. Good. Better than the unreal. But not enough. Something has yet to happen. I use Encounter groups, Gestalt groups, and all the therapies that have become available in the West. They are perfectly beautiful; they bring you from the first, false state to the authentic, real state. But my work goes beyond them. But I can go beyond only if you have gone through the second stage. From the first there is no way, from the false there is no way, to enlightenment; only from the real is there a way.
You will have to go through the ecstasy of the real and the agony of the real. When you have lived deeply all the realities of life, the witness will arise. It arises naturally, out of being real.
So you say, "Usually I am 'this way' or 'that way'." That is not a good way. You get fixed with one thing, this way or that. Become more fluid, remain more fluid, because life is not solid; it is fluid, it is flow. And that's what is happening and is confusing you.
"But for some time I have experienced all kinds of contradictions, simultaneously." Good.
You are blessed. This confusion is the beginning of a great journey, a great pilgrimage. If you become afraid you will go back to the false.
The false is secure. Let me remind you again and again: the false is comfortable. A good way to die is the false, but not a good way to live. Even your death will be false, because how can the death be real? When you have not lived really, how can you die really?
So many people die, but rarely does a real death happen. When a Buddha dies it is a real death, or when Lin Chi dies it is a real death. There are very few deaths which are real, because there are very few lives which are real. You only pretend to live, and then one day you pretend to die.
I have heard, a man met an old friend on the road, and the old friend was a very, very fanatical Christian Scientist. The old friend asked this man, "How is your father now?" and the man said, "He is very ill." The Christian Scientist, of course, to be consistent with his philosophy, said, "He is not ill. He only thinks he is ill."
That is the Christian Scientists' ideology, that you only think that you are ill, that's why you are ill. You are not really ill. He said, "He only thinks he is ill. He is not really ill."
After eight days, these two men met again, and the Christian Scientist asked again, "How is your father now?"
And the young man hesitated a little, and then he said, "Now he thinks he is dead." -- to be consistent with this old man's ideology.
The father has died, but this is a reality.
You go on living in a fantasy world. Your life is nothing but your thinking, a pseudo thing; and so is your death. Your illness, your health, your happiness, your sadness are all so bogus that how can you die a real death? A real death has to be earned. One has to become worthy of real death. And one becomes worthy only by living truly.
Now you are very close to a great source of light. That's why you are feeling all sorts of contradictions simultaneously. That means your solidity is melting. Your hate and love are not categorized as two anymore. They are not put into boxes separately anymore; they are merging with each other. The profound and the trivial are coming together, and you are confused because now you cannot label what is what.
"I have experienced all kinds of contradictions, simultaneously. I see women as objects of worship, and at the same time I lust after them." That's what has happened down the ages.
There are two things man has done with woman: either he has worshiped woman as a goddess or he has condemned woman as a witch. Either he has exploited the woman for his lust or he has touched her feet and said, "You are divine. Divine mother." Either the woman has been a prostitute or a divine mother. Man has not accepted woman just as human.
And woman is human, as human as you are. She is neither a divine mother nor is she a prostitute, but that's how the mind goes on. The mind makes things different, separate, puts them in categories. You have killed the real woman, because the real woman is both, the prostitute and the divine mother, together, simultaneously. If you fall in love with a prostitute you will find a divine mother. Even a prostitute will turn into a divine mother if you are in love with her; you will not find the prostitute. And fall in love with a divine mother and you will find the prostitute too.
What I am saying is that life is not so small as to be put into boxes -- that this is a prostitute and this is a divine mother. Life is vast, so big. It contains contradictions. And that is the beauty of life and that is the richness of life.
Man has been changing between these polarities. Sometimes he calls the woman the divine mother. That too is inhuman, because then you put the woman on a pedestal and you don't allow her to be human. Watch. When you force a woman to be a divine mother, what are you doing? You are not allowing her to be human. And she will pretend that she is a divine mother, so if you want to make love to her she will be reluctantly ready. She will say no, and she will mean yes. She has to say no; she is the divine mother.
A good woman has to be a dead woman. Even while you are making love, she will lie down there like a corpse. A slight movement, and you will become afraid: so are you wrong, she is not so good, not so virtuous? If she starts enjoying your lovemaking, you will think that she is a bad woman. Only bad women enjoy lovemaking, not good women. Good women?
They don't think of sex at all.
Look at the trick. You put the woman so high; then you don't allow her to be human. You have made her "superhuman". That is a way to make her inhuman. Or you force her to be a prostitute; that is again a way, to put her below the human, to make her again inhuman. Then you go to the prostitute, you give her the money, you make love to her -- with no responsibility, with no love. It is simple, pure lust, but you know that that woman is a bad woman. How can you love her? You feel good, there is no problem. You can lust after this woman and you can use her as a thing. She is just a prostitute, not a human being; you don't relate to her. You just go and do things to her, pay the price, and you are finished. Next day in the marketplace, you will not even recognize her.
In both these ways you have turned the woman into inhuman beings. Both are ugly.
The woman is both: the divine mother and the prostitute. Just as you are both: God and animal.
Let me repeat: the profane is the sacred, the samsara is the nirvana.
Through these categories ... The reality is so complex and so deep it cannot be categorized, it cannot be demarked into definitions. No woman is just a prostitute and no woman is just a divine mother. And that is true about man, the same way. Once you see this, you are freed from categories, logical boxes, pigeonholes, and you can see reality as it is.
A woman is a human being, as you are a human being. Yes sometimes she is a witch; just as sometimes you are mean, ugly, horrible, she is too. And sometimes she is ecstasy, pure ecstasy. Sometimes she is the most beautiful phenomenon on the earth, just as you are.
In India we have the right representation, the symbol of Kali. You must have seen the pictures of Kali or the statues of Kali. That is really a great understanding about women. Kali is painted as black, as black as the devil -- "kali" means "black" -- and yet she is the divine mother. And she is most beautiful. She is black, as black as the devil, but her form is that of the divine. She has a beautiful face, a beautiful body, absolutely in proportion; but she is black. And then, she is dancing on the chest of her husband, almost killing him. Shiva is her husband, and she is dancing on his chest and almost killing him. And she loves him too. She loves and kills together. All contradictions put together.
The mother gives you birth, the woman gives you birth, and by and by the woman kills you too. She brings your death closer; hence the attraction and the fear. You are attracted with the divine, and you are afraid with the devilish.
So you say, "I see women as objects of worship, and at the same time I lust after them."
Both are complementaries. Accept them. That's how reality is. The woman is both, and you are both. And if you accept this contradictory reality, one day you will go beyond it, you will transcend it.
There is a transcendental element too, but that transcendental element can be understood only when you pass through contradictions. If you avoid contradictions you will never attain the transcendental. Go through the contradictory, and by and by you will become just a witness to them both.
How does it work? It works in a simple way. If you think you are good, you are identified with good. If you think you are bad, you are identified with the bad. But if you allow both good and bad together, you cannot get identified with either. You remain unidentified, and that is the fundamental, the radical change. You remain unidentified. You cannot figure out who you are, good or bad, day or night, life or death, beautiful or ugly. You cannot identify with anything, so you remain unidentified.
Good comes and passes, and you know you cannot be good, because the bad is coming.
And the bad comes and passes, and you know you cannot be the bad. either, because the good is coming. So you cannot be good and you cannot be bad; then who are you? You are a witness. a witness who watches everything come and go, a watcher on the hills.
"I am content to let life flow, and I am afraid of the future." The same. The same contradiction on so many levels.
"I crave to be alone, and I crave to be always with people." The same.
"I feel bizarre because these contradictions all seem equally real and true." They are. And when for the first time you recognize that they are true and real, one feels bizarre. That's what the Zen people say: first the rivers are rivers and the mountain are mountains, then the rivers are no more rivers and the mountains are no more mountains -- bizarre, confusion, clouds, everything topsy-turvy, all disturbed -- and then one day mountains are again mountains and rivers are again rivers, everything settled again, on a higher plane of course, on the transcendental plane of course.
You will have to go through this bizarreness. To be sane one has to pass through many insanities.
"Is there anything to be understood or done about this?" Just understood, nothing to be done about it. I don't teach doing. Nothing has to be done. You just watch. Watch more and more carefully, watch in detail. Watch the subtlest nuance of any change in you. Watch all -- which no prejudice, with no judgement. And that watching will integrate you, will make you more and more aware.
And that is the whole purpose of life: to create more intelligence, to create more awareness.
IS THERE ANYTHING I CAN GIVE YOU BACK?
Nothing, because that is what I give to you. I give you nothing, and only nothing can you give me back.
In fact, don't start thinking of giving me anything back, because I am not giving you anything. I am simply making you aware of things that you already have. You don't owe anything to me, not even a thank-you. If you thank me, that is simply generous of you, you are just being polite and gentlemanly; otherwise there is nothing. You don't owe anything to me. I have not given anything to you and I am not going to give anything to you, and nothing can be given, in the very nature of things.
In fact, if you are not angry at me, I will be happy enough. Because I take away many things. I don't give anything to you. I take away your ego, and I don't give anything instead. I take away a thousand and one things. And when those thousand and one things have been taken away, suddenly you become aware of that which has always been there from the very beginning.
So let me say it in this way: I give you that which you already have, and I take away things which you don't have but you think you have. I take away that which is not there but you believe is there. I take away your illusions.
But I cannot give reality. Reality is that which cannot be given; it is already there. I eliminate the illusion, and the reality is there. I simply give you back to yourself.
There is no need to be worried -- "Is there anything I can give you back.?" Just if you are not angry, that will be enough. If you can forgive me, that will be enough.
I know it is very difficult to forgive me. That is the greatest danger a Master takes on his shoulders. It is very difficult for the disciples to forgive him, and they are always watching from the corner of their eyes to find some fault. They are always waiting to find some loophole so they can jump upon it and they can say, "So, I have found the reality. This man is nothing," and they can go and condemn. It is a very dangerous game.
The disciples are continuously watchful. They are like spies, spying on the Master, if they can find something.
Just the other question-answer day, when I talked about Dr. Kovoor, two, three persons got almost mad about me. They have written letters that "Why did you do this? It is cheap!" And I go on telling you the cheap is the costly! And the trivial is the profound! And the world, the samsara, is nirvana! Do you hear me, or not? And they have demanded, almost it is a demand, that "You have to answer it, why you attacked him." I have not attacked him; I have attacked these three people who have written to me. What have I to do with Kovoor? He is not going to come here, I am not going to go there. We are not going to meet anyway. I have attacked these three persons, and I have got them, trapped them, they are trapped. I have attacked their idea of me.
One has written, "It is inconceivable that a man of your height should come so low." But who in the first place has told you that I am a man of height? You yourself project, and if your projections are destroyed, you are angry at me?
I go on repeating, just to be safe, that I am a very ordinary man. Otherwise you will hang me in the sky. You will say, "You are so high."
If you find me eating or if you find me taking a bath ... Do you know? In heaven there is no provision for God's bathroom. No provision. I have gone through all the scriptures.
Can you believe God farts? Impossible. So high, and farting? Belching? These things are good for human beings, not for gods.
Who has told you I am so high? But you project.
And I am not so foolish as to accept your projections. If you want to project such things, you will have to find some other people. You are not allowed to project anything on me. I will go on throwing it. I am not here to fulfill any of your expectations. That is the very trouble you have to tolerate with me. You would like me to be dead and sitting on a golden throne, and then you can worship me easily. But I am alive.
And I go on doing things that I like. I don't care what you think. If you are disturbed it is your problem; it is none of my business. Then you have to look into yourself and find ways not to be disturbed.
These things come again and again in your mind, and you don't see that they are YOUR problems.
Somebody else has asked, "Why do we have to pay money here?" "I have no money," he says, "and I want to be here." But then who is going to pay for you? You will need money, you will need food, you will need a shelter, you will need clothes, sometimes you will be ill, you will need the hospital: who is going to pay for you? Now, he thinks that this ashram is money obsessed. If people who don't have money are allowed, then Laxmi will have to go even more money obsessed because for them also she will have to arrange. Just to avoid money obsession, money has to be arranged. There are many people who would like to be here, but then who is going to arrange for them? And if somebody else arranges for them, he will demand something in return.
The person says, "Even Christians don't ask for money; even they are not that bold." I know they are not that bold. They need not be; they have enough money. The Vatican has enough money; that is the richest party in the world. But then you have to pay -- not in money, money is there -- you have to pay with other things: you have to pay with your freedom.
Here I want you to be free. I don't want to hinder your freedom.
If you want to stay here without money, then I will have to ask some people who have money to give money to the ashram. But then they have their conditions. Then their conditions have to be fulfilled. Otherwise why should they give their money? They give money in return for something. Then you will not be free here. And I will not be free here. I will not be able to say what I want to say. Then they will dictate to me that this has to be said and this has not to be said.
Nobody is money obsessed. But the questioner is money obsessed: he has no money and he wants to be here. But what is money? Money is just that you have to pay for everything.
You eat: you have to pay for it. You live: you have to pay for it. You need clothes: you have to pay for it.
And why should you not pay? Then somebody else will have to pay for you. Why exploit somebody else?
If you don't have money, then go and earn money and come back. YOU are money obsessed! But you think that Bhagwan is demanding money. It is your problem.
Somebody has said, "I can't see the point why I have to pay when I come to the lecture.
When I have to pay ten rupees for the lecture, then I cannot think of you as God." So the price of thinking of me as God is ten rupees! If he does not have to pay, he will think of me as God.
What do you think? You are trying to bribe me? Pay twenty rupees and think of me as the devil, perfectly okay!
Why should you not pay? Why should you like to exploit?
And this is my understanding, that you hear only when you pay; otherwise you don't hear.
When you have nothing to pay, there is no need to hear. The more you pay, the more alert you are -- because those ten rupees are gone. If you don't listen it is your business; you remain a little alert. J know you are money-minded; those ten rupees will keep you awake.
And my godhood is not in danger, because I don't care what you think about me. That is not the point at all. It is not that you have made me a god. This is my declaration; it is not your recognition. If nobody believes in me, then too I am a god. If only I believe in me, that's enough. I don't need a single witness. This is MY understanding.
Then again, the moment you think that this man is Bhagwan, then he should behave in such a way and in such a way. Then he should be on a high pedestal. He should not behave like a human being.
Then you don't understand my concept of Bhagwan. My concept of Bhagwan is not that a Bhagwan is a special being, that a Bhagwan is a perfect being, that a Bhagwan is not of this world. My concept of Bhagwan is that God is a normal quality of existence. Just by being, you are God.
You are not a painter by just being. For painting, you will have to learn some skill, you will have to go to an art school. And then too your being a painter will depend on so many recognitions -- people will recognize, may not recognize; the critics will appreciate, may not appreciate; a thousand and one things. If you want to be a musician, just by being, you are not a musician. You will have to learn; this is something which has to be learned.
When I say God, I mean you ARE God, just by being. It is not a specialization.
Then what is the difference between me and you? The only difference is that I recognize my godhood and you don't recognize yours. Otherwise there is no distinction. I am as imperfect as you are! Then what is the difference between me and you? The difference is that I enjoy my imperfection and you don't enjoy yours, that I am perfectly happy with all my imperfections and you are not happy with yours. You have a notion of perfection and I have none. I am perfect in my imperfections. I have accepted them totally, in toto. I am not trying to improve myself; I am simply the way I am. And I am happy the way I am.
The day you are also happy the way you are, the day you are also happy with all your imperfections, you are God. You are still God, whether you recognize it or you don't recognize it, but you have your ideas about God, and then you project those ideas. And if, sometimes, they are shattered -- and they will be shattered again and again because I cannot keep to your expectations ...
I am a free man. I live the way I live. And see the whole point: I am not expecting anything from you; still you go on expecting things from me. My whole effort here is to help you to be yourself, and your whole effort here is to make me something that you want me to be. Drop all this nonsense.
That's why I say even if you can forgive me, that will be enough. You need not even say a thank-you.
It is very difficult to be safe amongst disciples; hence I need bodyguards. Because a disciple has "surrendered," now he will take revenge. And of course, if he surrenders to me, he will take revenge on me. Where else will he go to take the revenge?
Watch all these tendencies in you.
It was not Kovoor, it was not my criticism of Kovoor, that has hurt you. It is your idea of me, it is your expectation of me, that is feeling hurt. So drop the expectations; otherwise you will feel hurt again and again -- I will find other Kovoors. Sometimes, even if they are not there, I can invent! But I am going to destroy all your expectations of me because if you cannot drop expectations about me, how can you drop expectations about yourself? It will be impossible.
And my whole work consists in a simple thing: to live a life without expectations, without hope, to live a life moment to moment, with no ideals.
Two men were chatting when the name of a mutual friend was mentioned. "Are you a friend of Harry's?" the first asked.
"Are we friends?" the man said. "Twenty years we are friends. There is nothing I would not do for Harry and there is nothing he would not do for me. In fact, for twenty years we have gone through life together, doing absolutely nothing for each other."
I am doing nothing to you. You, please, do nothing to me. Even if this can happen, there will arise a great friendship. You need not feel obliged; you don't owe anything to me.
MEHER BABA REMAINED SILENT FOR THE LAST FORTY-FIVE YEARS OF HIS LIFE.
PLEASE COMMENT ON ITS IMPLICATIONS.
There is nothing much in it. He just got fed up with the questions of his disciples.
And sometimes the idea arises in me too. So watch.
OSHO, THERE ARE A FEW WORDS YOU ALWAYS PRONOUNCE WRONGLY.
So that you can say to people that at least in one thing Osho is consistent.
My English is not that of the Englishman; my English is not that of the American; it is not even of the Indian. My English is just MINE. So you have to tolerate it. And I am very reluctant to improve about anything.
And my English has been of a great help to me. I used to live in Jabalpur, for many years.
The first day I was driving to the university, a woman, who lived next to me, an American woman, she wanted a lift. Now, this was going to be dangerous. This was the first day -- and every day then I will have to carry her and tolerate her chattering for almost half an hour, going to the university and coming.
I had heard the American expression "Can I drop you off somewhere?" but I managed it into my English and I asked her, "Can I throw you down someplace?" And finished! She never asked again.
Once, another, an Englishwoman, got interested in me. I don't know what she saw in me, but she was almost in a fantasy. She was a lecturer in the same university, in the English department. She was after me. I was simply surprised as to what she saw in me because I don't see anything in myself; it is just emptiness there. But my English helped.
You know the expression ...? I had read somewhere, in a novel, that a young man gazes into the eyes of his woman and says to her that "Your face, your beauty, your joy, your presence make time stand still." So I did the same to this woman.
I told her, "You have such a face that it would stop a clock." And finished! My English helped me.
Sometimes you will find it difficult too, because my structure of the sentences is mine, and sometimes the meaning I put into words is mine, the pronunciations are mine; sometimes you can't even get what I am saying. That helps you to keep awake. You have to listen attentively; you can miss. You cannot take me for granted.
One man was discussing with me about a politician, and I told the man, "That politician is a spherical S.O.B."
The man was puzzled; he said, "I have come across many S.O.B.'s in my life. But what do you mean by 'spherical'?"
"I mean," I said to him, "he is an S.O.B. any way you look at him."
"Spherical," that is my own word.
And my English has a certain reputation, and I am not going to destroy it.
A little lady from Fresno, visiting San Francisco, got quite a thrill out of attending a daring party in the Bohemia known as Telegraph Hill.
A friend who was showing her the sights pointed out a familiar-looking young couple and whispered, "Don't look now, but those two artists there are living in sin."
"Sin, my foot!" exclaimed the Fresno lady. "I know them. It is just Lois and Maurice, and they were married in the Fresno Baptist Church five years ago."
The young couple overheard and quickly drew the Fresno lady aside. "For God's sake don't tell anybody we are married," said the young man in a tense undertone. "It would ruin our artistic reputation."
I have a certain reputation of my English, hmm? And I am not going to change it in any way.
Question WHAT IS PORNOGRAPHY, AND WHY DOES IT HAVE SO MUCH APPEAL?
Pornography is a by-product of religious repression. The whole credit goes to the priests.
Pornography has nothing to do with pornographers. The pornography is created, managed by the Church, by the religious people.
In a primitive, natural state, man is not pornographic. When human beings are naked and nude and man knows the woman's body and woman knows the man's body, you cannot sell PLAYBOY. It is impossible. Who will purchase PLAYBOY? And who will look into all that crap?
They have repressed so much that man's mind is fascinated of pornography. The whole credit goes to them. They have repressed so much that man's mind is boiling. The man wants to see the woman's body. Nothing wrong in it, a simple desire, a human desire. And the woman wants to know the man's body. A simple desire, nothing wrong about it.
Just think of a world where trees are covered with clothes. There are people ... I have heard about some English ladies who cover their dogs and cats with clothes. Just think, cows and horses and dogs dressed. Then you will find new pornography arising. Somebody will publish a NUDE picture of a tree -- and you will hide it in a Bible and look at it!
This whole foolishness is out of religious repression.
Make man free, allow people to be nude. I am not saying they should continuously be nude, but nudity should be accepted. On the beach, at the swimming pool, in the home ...
nudity should be accepted. The children should take a bath with the mother, with the father, in the bathroom. There is no need for the father to lock the bathroom when he goes in. The children can come and have a talk and chitchat and go out. Pornography will disappear.
Each child wants to know. "How does my daddy look?" Each child wants to know, "How does my mother look?" And this is simply intelligence, curiosity. And the child cannot know what the mother looks like, and the child cannot know what the father looks like; now you are creating illness in the child's mind. It is YOU, that YOU are ill, and the illness will be reflected in the child's mind.
I am not saying sit nude in the office or in the factory. If it is hot, it is okay, but there is no need to be naked, it should not be an obsession; but this continuous obsession of hiding your body is just ugly.
And one thing more. Because of the clothes, bodies HAVE become ugly, because then you don't care. You care only about the face. If your belly goes on becoming bigger and bigger, who bothers? You can hide it. Your body has become ugly because it is not exposed; otherwise you will think a little: the belly is getting too big. Just let one hundred people stand nude, and they all will be ashamed, and they will squirm and they will start hiding themselves.
Something is wrong. Why is it so? They know only about their face. The face they take care of; the whole body is neglected.
This is bad. This is not good. It is not in favor of the body, either.
Any country where people are allowed a little freedom to be nude becomes more beautiful; people have more beautiful bodies. If American women are getting more beautiful and have more beautiful bodies there is no wonder in it. Indian woman will have to wait long; they can hide their ugly bodies in the saries very carefully. The sari is a great help.
Nudity should be natural, should be as natural as animals, as trees, as everything else is nude. Then pornography will disappear.
Pornography is there as a sort of mental masturbation; it is mind masturbation. You are not allowed to love women, you are not allowed to love men, you are not allowed to make as many contacts as possible; the mind is boiling and starts a sort of inner masturbation.
Pornography helps you; it gives you visions of beautiful women and beautiful men, to dream about, and it gives you a thrill.
Your alive wife does not give you any thrill. With your alive wife you suddenly go dead.
There are people, even while making love to their wife, they are imagining some other woman; they are imagining some PLAYBOY picture. They can make love to their woman only when in their imagination there is some other woman, some fantasy. Then they get thrilled. They are not making love to their woman, and the woman is not making love to them.
She may be thinking of some actor or some hero or somebody. There are four people in each bed! Of course, it is too crowded, and you never contact the real person; those imaginary ones are standing in between.
You should know that masturbation -- mental or physical is a perversion. It does not exist in nature. Homosexuality does not exist in nature, but in zoos it comes into existence. In zoos animals start masturbating. In zoos animals even start becoming homosexually interested.
Wherever the situation is unnatural, unnatural perversions enter. In the military, in the army, people become homosexual, because it is an "all-boys" club, no woman available. Their pent-up energies start making them insane; they think they will go mad if they don't allow some outlet. In the boys' hostels, in the girls' hostels, where no boy can come, no girl can come, the other sex is not allowed, naturally pornography will be greatly enjoyed. It will help masturbation.
But these things have not been talked of directly. Now many will be offended -- why am I talking about these things? I am here to make everything clear to you so that you can become more and more natural. The appeal for pornography simply says that your mind is in an abnormal state. It is perfectly good to be interested in a beautiful woman, nothing wrong, but to have a picture of a nude woman and to get excited about it is just stupid. That's what people are doing with pornography.
I have heard a beautiful joke. Listen attentively, don't miss it.
A husband was suspicious of his wife, so he hired a private detective to find out whether she had a lover or not. The detective, a Chinese immigrant, came back to report after only two days. His arm and nose were broken and his head was tied up in bandages.
"What happened?" the husband inquired eagerly. "Any proof yet?"
"Well," the detective answered, "I hid outside your house when you left in the morning.
After half an hour a man came and let himself in with a key. I climbed a tree to see into the bedroom, and there was he holding she and she kissing he. So he play with she and she play with he; I play with me and I fall down from the tree."
That's what pornography is.
Beware of all sorts of perversions. To love is good; to dream about it is ugly. Why? When the real is available, why go for the unreal? Even the real never satisfies! So how can the unreal satisfy? Even the real, in the final analysis, proves to be illusory, so what to say about the illusory?
Let me repeat: Even the real, one day, proves to be just unreal, so what to say about the unreal?
Go into the real love, and you will become so aware one day that even the real love, the so-called real love, will disappear. And when a man is completely beyond sexuality ... Not that I am saying "TRY to go beyond," no, not at all, God forbid. What I mean when I say when a man "goes beyond" is that when a man has gone deeper into sex, into love, and has known and has found that there is nothing, that very finding takes him above. He starts floating above the earth, he grows wings. That transcendence is BRAHMACHARYA, that transcendence is celibacy. It has nothing to do with your effort; it has nothing to do with repression.
A repressed person can never attain BRAHMACHARYA; he will become pornographic.
And there are a thousand and one ways of being pornographic. In the old Indian scriptures there are descriptions of great RISHIS sitting in meditation and beautiful women trying to seduce them, dancing around them, naked. And the stories say they are sent by the God of heaven to corrupt them because the God in heaven is afraid if they attain to their SAMADHI they will become competitors. The God of heaven is afraid of their competition, so when they are attaining closer and closer, coming closer to SAMADHI, he sends beautiful women to seduce them.
Now, there is no God, and no beautiful women come from heaven; this is mind pornography. These RISHIS, these so-called seers, have repressed sex so much that at the last moment, when they are really getting closer to their innermost center, that repressed sex bursts forth, explodes. And in that explosion their own images, mind images ... It is a mind panorama, it is very colorful, and it is so colorful and looks so real that even they are deceived; they think really women are there.
Just go in a cave for three months and be celibate and force celibacy. After three months you will be a great seer -- and you will start seeing things. That is what a great seer is. You will start seeing damsels and beautiful APSARAS from heaven coming and dancing around you seducing you. They are just your mind picture. When you are deprived of reality, your dreams start almost looking like reality. That's what we call hallucination.
In those old days PLAYBOY magazine was not available, so the RISHIMUNIS had to depend on their own. Now you can have some support from the outside.
But beware: even the real is proved, finally, to be unreal. So don't move into the realms of the unreal. Go into the real, let it be a great experience. I am not against it, I am all for it, go into it, because only by going into it, one day, BRAHMACHARYA, one day, you simply get out of it.
Not that love will disappear. In fact, for the first time love will appear, but a totally different kind of love. Buddha calls it compassion -- a cool love, with no sexual heat in it.
Your being will become a benediction. Your very presence will make people feel your love.
Your love will fall and shower on them. In your very presence, people will start moving into the unknown.
Yes, great compassion will arise in you. It is the same sexual energy, released from the sexual objects. Not repressed. Released. Not forcibly repressed, but understandably released.
The same sexual energy becomes love, compassion.
And when love, compassion, arises you are fulfilled. Buddha has said two things are the goals: awareness and compassion. And both come out of the sex energy; both are born out of it. Those two are the flowers, ultimate flowers, of sex energy.
That lotus is waiting in you to flower. Don't waste your energies. Use your energies to understand them, go into them deeply, meditatively, so that one day that lotus opens.